Vindhyavasini is the name of Devi Amba or Durga. Her temple is located at Vindhyachal, 8 km away from Mirzapur on the banks of river Ganges, in Uttar Pradesh. The goddess gets her name from Vindhya Range and the name Vindhyavasini, literally means, she who resides in Vindhya. As it is believed that the Shaktipeeths were created on earth, where the body parts of Sati fell. But Vindhayachal is the place and a Shaktipeeth, where the Devi had chosen to reside after her birth. At the time of the birth of Krishna as 8th Child of Devaki-Vasudeva, Maha-Yogini Mahamaya has taken birth at same time at Nanda-Yashoda and as per the instruction from God Vishnu, Vasudev had replaced Krishna with this girl child of Yashoda.
When Kansa tried to kill this girl child she escaped from the hand of Kansa and turned into Devi form and informed him that the one who would kill him was already born and safe and vanished from the prison of Mathura.Thereafter, she choose Vindhyachal mountains to reside, where her temple is located at present. The temple is one of the most revered Shakti Peethas of India. The Vindhyavasini Devi is also known popularly by name of Kajala Devi. Goddess Kali is adorned in the form of Vindhyavasini Devi.
The huge number of crowds visits the temple, especially during Navaratri in Hindu months of Chaitra and Ashwin. In month of Jyeshtha, the Kajali competition, a folk genre is held here.There is a temple of Mahasaraswati named Ashtbhuja Temple, 3 km away on a hillock and a temple of goddess Kali in cave called Kali khoh temple. The pilgrims prefer to visit these three temples, which is a part of rite called Trilokan Parikrama. There is also a temple dedicated to goddess n pokhara, Nepal. The goddess is the royal goddess of Shah Dynasty kings of Nepal.
About The Temple
The Vindhyavasini temple is one of the most famous Shaktipeetha temples in the India. It is the shrine of Maa Vindhyavasini, who is a divine form of Maa Shakti. Millions of devotees from all across the world visit this holy shrine each year to get a darshan of this famous form of the Goddess. The Vindhyavasini temple is mentioned in the Srimad Devi Bhagwatam as one of 108 main Shaktipeethas Vindhyavasini Devi Temple is situated in Vindhyachal, 8 km from Mirzapur, on the banks of the holy river Ganges. It is one of the most revered Shaktipeeths of the presiding deity, Vindhyavasini Devi. The temple is visited by large number of people daily. Big congregations are held during Navratras in Chaitra (April) and Ashwin (October) months. Kajali competitions are held in the month of Jyestha (June). The temple is situated just 2 km from the Kali Khoh, an ancient cave temple dedicated to Goddess Kali.
The temple is about seventy kilometres, about an hour and a half by driving from Varanasi, Vindhyachal is a renowned religious city dedicated to Goddess Vindhyavasini. Mythologically goddess Vindhyavasini is believed to be the instant bestower of benediction. There are several temples of other deities in the vicinity, the most famous ones being Ashtabhuja Devi Temple and kalikhoh Temple, which constitute the Trikona Parikrama (circumambulation).
Vindhyachal is one a town in Mirzapur-Vindhyachal Municipality is situated in the middle of the two holy cities- Allahabad and Varanasi on the bank of River Ganges in the Mirzapur district. It is one of the holiest places of India. The built up area lies along the direction of the River Ganges with the temple of Vindhyavasini in the centre. The city is dedicated to Goddess Vindhyavasini and is one of the renowned Shaktipeethas of the country and an important religious and pilgrim centre. There are many other temples and mineral springs (locally known as Kunds) in the vicinity of the town. Vindhyavasini, Ashtabhuja and Kali Khoh are three main Shakti temples here, located on the three corners of Vindhya Parvat.
About The Deity
By myth, Goddess Vindhyavasini is believed to be the instant bestower of benediction. There are several temples of other deities in the vicinity, the most famous ones being Ashtabhuja Devi Temple and kalikhoh Temple, which constitute the Trikona Parikrama (circumambulation). The Vindhyavasini Devi Temple, the Ashtabhuja temple, dedicated to Goddess Mahasaraswati (on a hillock, 3 km from Vindhyavasini temple) and the Kali khoh temple, dedicated to Goddess Kali (2 km from Vindhyavasini temple) form the Trikon Parikrama. Bhairav temples are located around the city centre to ward off evil effects, viz., Anand Bhairav on the east, Sidhanath on the west, Kapal Bhairav on the south and Rudra Bhairav on the north side.
Legend and Stories
Ashtabhuja Devi Temple is situated at the top of the Vindhya Mountain in Vindhayachal. According to legend, a girl child born to Vasudev and Devaki, parents of Lord Krishna, flew miraculously from the grip of Kamsa when he attempted to bash her to death, and descended here. This temple within a cave of a hillock,3 km from Vindhyavasini Devi temple,is dedicated to her. Shrimad Devi Bhagwat has given special importance to Vindhyachal Shakti Peeth out of its 108 Shaktipeeths. It is a very famous Shakti Peet. Every years lakhs of devotees from every corner of India come here of both the Navratri. Thousands of saints come to Vindhyachal Dham and mountain for performing 9 days meditation. Every Tuesday and Saturday, temple has huge crowd of worshippers.Scriptures state that there is no other shrine like Vindhyachal elsewhere in the universe. Vidhya is not just a place between mountain ranges and natural beauty where streams Punya Salila, Patit- Pavani, Ganga make sound, but, it is a symbol of India’s integral culture. The 3 powers - Maha Lakshmi, Mahakali and Maha Saraswati reside at this place.
Parvati had performed meditation at this place for lord Shiva and got the name Aparna. Lord Ram performed Shrad- Tarpan of his ancestors at Ramganga Ghat and established the Rameshwaram Linga. He also established the Ramkund. Lord Vishnu received Sudarshan Chakra at this place. Vindhyachal which is situated on the Mahalalakshmi Yantra, circled with mountains, has been considered as the land of power. It is a very significant place out of the 108 Shakti Peetha and 12 Maha Peeth. According to Rudraymal, back of Sati had fell at this place. According to the Narad Puran, it is a place of conjunction of Ganga and Vindhya mountains. This place has multiple virtues. There is no place in universe which is pure like Vindhya.
Vidhyachal is called as Shaktipeeth, Siddhipeeth and Manidweep in scriptures. According to Devi Bhagwat, the place where Vindhachal mountain meet and, Ganga wash their feet and go back; Ganga again moves towards south by touching the Vindhya ranges in south, this place is called Manidweep. Jagdamba always reside here. Vruahneel Tantra also mention the existence of Vindhyavasini at this places.There is a story why goddess Durga chose to reside in Vindhyachal. According to the story, when Lord Krishna was born, Mahamaya was born to Nanda-Yashoda at the same time. Since all were aware that Kansa would kill Krishna, Vasudev replaced Mahamaya with Krishna as per the instruction of Lord Vishnu. When Kansa went to kill Mahamaya, she freed herself from his captivity and mocked at him stating that he is a big fool because the boy who is going to take his life has been replaced by her and is in safe hands. Thereafter, she escaped from Kansa's Mathura's prison and permanently planned to reside in the mountains of Vindhyanchal.
According to another Hindu mythology, it is believed that Goddess Durga had killed Mahishasura- The Demon, and thereafter had established herself in this region. This is also the reason why she is known as Vindhyavasini in Vindhyanchal regions. Another popular name of this temple is Kajala Devi.During Jyeshtha month (summer season- June Month) a folk competition is hosted at this place which is known as Kajali competition. This competition is one of the biggest attractions for the residents of this place.
Navratri Mela on both Navratries, Kajali Festival.The divine trinity is worshipped here as Ma Laxmi, Ma Kali and Ma Saraswati.‘Kajali’ the local folk music is dedicated to Ma Vindhyavasini. All Kajali singers from north India come here to celebrate Kajali Mahotsava (Festival). People come here to seek blessings from goddess of power. Tantriks also visit this place for Tantra sadhana (Meditation).
The three temples on the three corners of Vindhyachal, viz., Vindhyavasini, Kali Khoh and Ashtabhuja temple are locally known as “Trikon” (triangle) and pilgrimage is completed only after visiting all of them which is known as “Trikon Parikrama” (circumambulation of the divine triangle). As per Indian belief the triangle pilgrimage brings in overall good fortune to the pilgrims. There is also provision of taking holy dip, in the Kali Kund during this pilgrimage. The Parikrama is considered over after visiting the pond of saint Karngiri.
Aarti and Timings
'Sringar' of Maa Vindhyavasini is done 4 times in 24 hours.
- Mangla Aarti - 4:00 am to 5:00 am in the morning.
- Bhog Aarti - 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm in the afternoon.
- Chotti Aarti - 7:15 pm to 8:15 pm in the evening.
- Badi Aarti - 9:30 pm to 10:30 pm in the night.
Temple Aarti Timing during Navratri
During Navratras the temple is closed only four times for one hour each and remains open to devotees for the remaining 20 hours.
- Mangla Aarti - 3:00 am to 4:00 am in the morning.
- Bhog Aarti - 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm in the afternoon.
- Chotti Aarti - 7:15 pm to 8:15 pm in the evening.
- Badi Aarti - 9:30 pm to 10:30 pm in the night.
Maa Vindhyavasini Temple closes at 12:00 am except in Navratras and opens 4:00 am in the morning. Immediately after opening, 'Mangla Aarti' is performed and devotees are allowed to seek blessings from Devi Mata from 5:00 am. The temple is again closed at 12 Noon for 'Bhog Aarti' and is re-opens at 1:30 pm. The temple is again closed for 'Chotti Aarti' at 7:15 pm and re-opened at 8:15 pm. At 9:30 pm the temple is closed for 'Badi Aarti' and opened again for devotees at 10:30 pm.
State Bank of India, Main Branch, Mirzapur-231301, Uttar Pradesh.
Government Tourist office
U.P. Government Tourist Office, Jahnavi Campus, Near Shastri Bridge, Mirzapur, Uttar Pradesh.
There are few good restaurants around the temple.
Awadhi and Mughlai are the basic genres. The cooking patterns are quite similar to the North Indian ones. Both, vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes are prevalent here. The use of paneer, cardamom and saffron are popular. Chaats, samosas and pakodas are also widely eaten.
Best time to visit
Vindhyachal has a tropical climate like other parts of Uttar Pradesh. During summer, the city becomes hot and humid. In winter, it becomes cold. Monsoon usually comes in the month of July. The best times to get there are from March to October.
There is no evidence available on the origin and construction date of the temple yet it is believed that it was constructed many centuries ago by an unknown dynasty. The temple is not only famous for its religious significances but also for its incredible architecture that shows the real image of Indian style of architecture. The main attraction of the temple is an idol of Goddess Vindhyavasini which is believed to be Swayambhu or self originated. According to local folklore, once a saint visited the location where present temple is situated. He found an idol of Goddess Vindhyavasini in the forests.Later the place where the idol was found was constructed into a great temple. Since the Stone Age, this area has been populated by humans. Evidences of the civilizations from the mid-Stone Age till the Copper Age are found here abundantly.
In the Maurya period, many financial key activities took place here. A pillar inscription from the period of Ashoka was found in the Narghat region. The valiant Vikramaditya ruled this area in the first century B.C. He built the Bhartrihari Temple too. Some 12th century literature also refers to this place numerous times. The very first historical description was given by the great traveller, Tieffenthaler.
Legend has it that the location of the Vindhyavasini temple is where Mata Parvati had meditated to Lord Shiva. Thus it is one of the most important places for devotees to visit during the Navratris, in order to seek Devi’s most auspicious blessings. This special shrine is also blessed by the combined powers of Maha Lakshmi, Maha Kali and Maha Saraswati. Many scriptures refer to Vindhyachal as the holiest and most special of the Shaktipeethas where Goddess Durga resided during the Dwapara Yuga. The incident of Lord Krishna’s birth also is significant to the Vindhyavasini temple. As Vasudev and Devaki’s son was smuggled out of Kamsa’s prison and taken to Gokul, Devi Mahamaya who was born to Nanda and Yashoda was taken to the prison to fool Kamsa. Later she had manifested in front of Kamsa and prophesied that Krishna would be his end. She then chose Vindhyachal as her residence. Since this temple is located on the Vindhya mountain range, it is called the Vindhyachal, and the form of devi residing here is hence known as Vindhyavasini.
The months of Chaitra, Ashwin and Jyestha are considered especially special for the darshan of Maa Vindhyavasini. Another legend refers back to the time after Daksha Yagna and Sati’s death. Lord Shiva was carrying the charred body of Sati all across the land in great sorrow, but Vishnu sliced it down with his Sudarshana Chakra. The toe of Devi Sati had fell at the location of the Vindhyavasini temple. Some say that Devi Durga had created the hillock upon which the temple stands, after killing the demon Mahisasura. Incidentally it is also the place where Lord Vishnu had received the Sudarshan Chakra from Lord Shiva. Vindhyavasini Devi Temple is regarded as one of the holiest shrines not only in Uttar Pradesh but also in whole India and is also considered amongst the most respected, holy and revered Shakti Peethas of the Kali Mata (Kali Goddess). In the scriptures of Hindus, this temple is mentioned as a holy shrine which enhances its religious significance.
The temple is flocked by thousands of devotees every day. Even on normal occasions, twenty five thousand people a day visit the temple. Tuesdays are auspicious.
People who profess the Hindu religion are not allowed inside the premises. Special dress codes are to be followed and worn by men and women to gain entry inside the monument. No electronic equipments are allowed inside the monument. Photography of any kind is strictly prohibited. Cleanliness has to be strictly maintained inside the premises. Smoking or tobacco isn’t allowed inside. Entry into the temple after the consumption of liquor or non-vegetarian food is not allowed. Actions of violence and quarrels are not to be committed inside the temple. Remove shoes and other leather items outside the temple. The belongings you carry inside are wholly and solely your responsibility. Any damage that’s caused has not to be blamed on the temple authorities. No mobile phones are allowed. Ladies handbags are also prohibited.
Varanasi is the closest airport located around 78 kms from Vindhyachal. The nearest airport is at Varanasi, which is 90 km away from Vindhyachal. There are many domestic flights from Varanasi to other major airports. Daily flights are available to and from Delhi, Agra and Khajuraho. Taxis are available from the airport to Vindhyachal.
Vindhyachal has its own railway station on Manikpur – Mughal Sarai line. Although a small railway station many trains stop here. Otherwise, one can easily come from Mirzapur railway station in twenty minutes.
Vindhyachal is 8 kms away from Mirzapur a large city In Uttar Pradesh. It is well connected to road.
Maha shakti Peeth, Maa Vindhya vasini dhaam,
Vindhyachal, Mirzapur, Uttar Pradesh,
India, Pin : 231307.
Devotees visit this temple to seek fulfillment of the following:-
- Trouble-free marital life
- Removal of physical ailments
- Freedom from economic Problems
- Fearless disposition
Yaa Devii Sarvabhuuteshhu Maatrirupena Sansthitah Yaa Devii Sarvabhuuteshhu Shaktirupena Sansthitah Yaa Devii Sarvabhuuteshhu Shaantirupena Sansthitah Namastasyaih Namastasyaih Namastasyaih Namo Namah
Meaning -Goddess Durga is omnipresent and a personification of the universal mother, who is omnipresent and who embodies power and energy. Oh great mother, who also embodies peace, I bow to you, mother, I bow to Durga and I bow to Shakti.
Ayi Giri Nandini Nandita Medini Vishva Vinodini Nandi Nute Giri Vara Vindhya Shiro Adhi Nivaasini Vissnnu Vilaasini Jissnnu Nute Bhagavati He Shiti Kannttha Kuttumbini Bhuri Kuttumbini Bhuri Krte Jaya Jaya He Mahissaasura Mardini Ramya Kapardini Shaila Sute
Meaning -I offer my salutations to the mountain's daughter, who fills the world with joy, who is praised by Nandi, who lives on Vindhya's summits, who gives joy to Her brother Lord Vishnu and who Lord Indra praises, Oh Goddess who is Lord Shiva's consort and who created abundance. The destroyer of the demon Mahishasura, the one with beautiful hair and the mountain's daughter, victory to you.
Madhu Kaittabha Vidhvamsi Vidhaatr Varade Namah Ruupam Dehi Jayam Dehi Yasho Dehi Dvisso Jahi
Meaning -Oh Devi Durga, we salute you for destroying Madhu and Kaitabha and granting Lord Brahma the boon of protection. Please bestow on me spiritual beauty, victory and glory and crush my inner enemies.
Mahissaasura Nirnaashi Bhaktaanaam Sukhade Namah Ruupam Dehi Jayam Dehi Yasho Dehi Dvisso Jahi
Meaning -We salute Goddess Durga who destroyed Mahishasura, the demon, who bestows a lot of happiness on Her devotees. Please bestow on me spiritual beauty, victory and glory and crush my inner enemies.
4:00 am to 10:00 pm