Trik Uta

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  Oct17 Trikuta, Tripura Sundari,&Tantra: New look at Ma Vaishnao Devi shrine Trikuta, Tripura Sundari,&Shrividya: NewLook at Ma Vaishnao Devi shrine Ma Vaishnao Devi Shrine at Katra, near Jammu is the second most visited shrine inIndia. More than ten million devotees thronged the sacred caves situated in theTrikuta mountains in the year 2011 alone. Devotees observe many taboos includingavoiding eating non-vegetarian foods and other this-worldly activities. For millionsof devotees, the Mother Goddess is physically present in the form of three pindis(stone emanation) in the sacred cave. The legends put the story of a younggirl’s struggle against a lustful tantrik Bhairo, behind the emergence of the three pindis. In all likelihood , local myths and legends are mere parochialization of theGreat Tradition centered around Trika Saiva philosophy of Kashmir and Shrividyatradition. Kol Kondoli – First Sight of Mother  The first step of the pilgrimage is at Kol Kandoli, Nagrota 13 Km from Jammu.The prevalent local narrative mentions that the Mother Goddess appeared as asmall child of 5 years in Nagrota and practiced spiritual austerities for next twelveyears. The legend mentions that the temple at Nagrota was built by the Pandavas. Itis mentioned that the Mother used to play on swings with little children. Oncechildren felt thirsty, the divine child gave an utensil (kaul made of silver ) andwhen it was shaken, water gushed out.The present temple has been renovated by the Archaeological Survey of India.Devotees worship the Divine Mother in the form of single Pindi which is believedto have emerged on the day when the Divine child left Nagrota for TrikutaMountains. The ancient temple wall is decorated with lotus containing eight &sixtyfour petals and iconography is clearly inspired by tantras. Adjacent to this temple,there is a Siva temple of Gandeshwara Mahadeva. There is a well opposite the Sivatemple. Water from the well is believed to have healing properties and it is locally believed that this eternal well was created when the utensil was shaken by childrenafter being instructed by the divine child.In the temple compound, there is a courtyard where swings are tied to a peepultree. Pilgrims ride on swings as part of ritual worship. The lotus and jasmineflowers are being offered in the worship. The recently constructed new compoundhas idols of Mothers of ten mahavidyas of tantras. Kol Kandoli: Parochialization of an esoteric tradition. The legend about Pandavas building temple itself suggest that there are enoughloopholes in the local narrative since the supposed appearance of the divine child isonly seven hundred years old; while Pandavas are believed to have roamed in the pre-Christian era. Nagrota is well known for abundant presence of nag snakes(Cobra), a snake used in tantrik symbolism. In local language, the name, KolKandoli signifies ‘Kol’ &‘Khandolan’. ‘Kol’ is utensil & ‘Khandolan’ is shaking. Itis interesting that ‘Kol’ itself seems to be parochialization of ‘Kaul’ tradition.‘Kandoli’ seems to be derived from ‘Kaundali’ (Mooladhar chakra in esoterictradition)’( Abhinavagupta, Tantraloka, chapter V,VERSE -145). Shaking of ‘Kol’is homologization of shaking of a Kaul’s body at mooladhar (lowest chakra).‘Kaundali” signifies shaking, swinging and the lowest root chakra.It is polysemic.The well in the compound with healing properties suggest the connection of thesacred comopound with siddhas/alchemical tradition/tantra. Throughout sacredcentres, particularly shakti pithas, such wells are found. Some of famous wells are  located in the temple complex of Kamakhya, Hinglaj, Puran’s Well (Sialkot,former shrine for the Nath sadhus), Gorakh’s well in Kacch, Vaidyanath wells of Benaras. Hathyoga Pradipika instructs spiritual practitioners to live in themonastery in whose courtyard, a well should be located. (David Gordon White,The Alchemical Body, University of Chicago,1996).The iconography , dominance of lotus in worship ceremony in this temple points tothe tantrik roots of the compound. The building of temple of the goddesses of tenmahavidyas as well as presence of Siva in the form of Gandeshwara Siva with Nandi Bull adjacent to the temple of the Goddess is ample evidence for this beingconnected with the earlier prevailing Great Tradition of Kashmir Saivism. Kheer isoffered in prasadam pointing to the strong resemblance with the shrine of Kheer Bhawani, a famous Goddess temple of the Saivite tradition in Kashmir. Dattatreya Just few kilometers from Nagrota lies two caves across river Tawi opposite BahuFort in Jammu. Presence of Dattatreya cave is another evidence of this shrine beingclosely connected with tantra tradition. Dattatreya is the Adiguru of MatsyendraNath. MatseyndraNath is the great yogi/siddha to whomAbhinavagupta pays obeisance in the greatest treatise on Tantras, Tantraloka(verse7, Chapter.1). The Kauls among Kashmiri pandits trace their descent fromDattatreya. Dattatreya is believed to be the author of sixty-four tantras includingGandharva, Mahanirvana, Rudrayamal, Kularnava tantras. Dattatreya is also thegreat master of Tripurrahasya, the SriVidya in which TripuraSundari is worshiped.Dattatreya cave is 30 feet long and located above the flowing Tawi river near theSheesh Mahal built by the Dogra rulers. This is active Shrividya centre and oneSwami Krishnanda has built new temple and installed Mahakali's statue. The nearby cave of SriChanda seems to be based on historical accounts. SriChandwas Guru Nanak’s son. He is the founder of the mystic order of Udasin sect. There  are historic records mentioning the visit of Guru Nanak to Ma Vaishnao Devishrine. The presence of cave near Nagrota where SriChand is believed to havemeditated in all likelihood is true. Since, Udasin sect considers Siva as the ultimateGod and there is esoteric tradition of raising Kundalini energy, it is significant pointer to establish Kol Kandoli temple at Nagrota as an ancient Siva-Sakticomplex rooted in the Saivite tradition of Kashmir. Trikuta Hills: Sacred journey to Ma Vaishnao Devi From Kol Kandoli to the sacred caves of the Goddess temple on Trikuta mountainsis the homologous journey inside human body from the base to the top. Nagrota isat the base while Mata’s Bhawan is situated on the peaks. Kol Kandoli at Nagrota(meaning the land of cobra serpents, hinting simultaneously about the coiledKundalini energy at the root centre) is the lowest point in the journey. There areother stations from Kol Kandoli to Bhawan-Banganga, Charan Paduka,Ardhkuwari-. These seem to be homologous geographical representation of the journey from chakras to chakras. The geography of the pilgrimage itself is a merereproduction of esoteric journey, the unfoldment of Kundalini energy. Theentrance into ArdhKunwari cave is symbolic entrance into the heart chakra, thecave of heart, hradyakash. It is pertinent to learn that in Kashmir Saivism, cavityof heart has immense significance.There is a Bhairon Temple on the highest peak of Trikuta, higher than Mata’sBhawan itself. Though local tradition relates the centre with the story of Sridhar Pandit & Bhairon tantrik, a disciple of GorakhNath whom Mother Goddess killedand later blessed, any serious scholar of tantra can figure out the parochializationof the great tradition of tantra. Every Sakta pitha is supposed to have its Bhairava,the form of Siva. Highest point in the human body is the Sahasrara, cranialaperture supposed to be the abode of Siva in esoteric tradition. Every journey to aSakta pitha culminates only after the darshan of the corresponding Bhairava.Highest journey to Ma Vaishnao Devi culminates at Bhairon Temple. Siva- principle is represented by ash in Indian tradition. Ash is the ultimate dissolution,the end of manifestation, nimesha.In Bhairon temple, there is huge fire –pit in atriangular shape. The devotees gather ash as the blessings. The sacred geographyrecapitulate the tantra soteriology. Bhairon is mere parochialization of Bhairav of Great Tradition.There is another legend about Mother Goddess as the divine child. She lived in Kol Kandoli for twelve years. Thus, at the age of sixteen(Shodasi), she is believed to have gone to the Trikuta mountains. One can draw a parallel between
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