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02/Apr/2022

Tarapith[1] is considered to be the maximum favorable area for tantra sadhana and tantric. The cremation floor, which is positioned on the bank of the river Dwarka[2] has several huts and hermitages of tantric. Relationships between the cremation area and a tantric are immense. This awful area has many mud-clad huts of tantric with thatched roofs underneath the banyan trees. The pink-painted skulls embedded in the dust partitions make the place dreaded.

Atma, cremation area, human skull, and tantric:

It is believed that Goddess Tara may be seen in shadows ingesting the blood of goats sacrificed each day at her altar, to satiate her anger. The ash-smeared tantric is usually seen in and across the temple. Tantric[3] uses appropriate skulls to drink liquid – skulls of virgins and people who devoted suicide are appeared as effective as Atma(soul) of those skulls have not attended freedom from existence cycle. The strong relationships between Atma, cremation area, human skull, and tantric have prevalently existed.

 

Where Is Tarapith?

It is known from different writings of great writers and devotees of Ma Tara, namely Promod Kumar Chattopadhyay, Binoy Ghosh that Tarapur was a village in the Birbhum district of West Bengal between Mallarpur and Rampurhat railway station in 1910. Tarapur (other names Chandipur, Sahapur) now called Tarapith is the land of Ma Tara and the very famous Tarapith temple is situated there.

Shakti Pith Tarapith  known as “the temple of salvation”. Relationships between the temple and Tantric are as old as the temple is. Tarapith is one of the Shakti Pith among 52 Piths and the eyeball of Sati fell here when her dead body was chopped into pieces by Lord Vishnu to prevent Lord Shiva to cause destruction of the universe. Lord Shiva was angry as Sati left her life in protest of her father Daksha’s cruel behavior toward her husband Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva kept Sati’s body on his shoulder and started dancing vigorously. It was about to cause the destruction of the universe and Lord Vishnu had to interfere.

When  Built?

The exact date when Tarapith Temple was built is not known. The first part of the thirteenth century is the approximate time when the mandir  built by Joydutta with the blessing of Ma Tara as most belief.

Who Built the Temple?

The commonly accepted story is that a merchant, Joydutta was the person who built the temple. Here is the story of Joydutta.

 

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Relationships between: Image- The Temple

 

The Story:

Once Joydutta and his only son and many associates were traveling in a few boats through the Dwaraka River with a lot of valuable goods for trading.  He cast anchored his boats beside a scary cremation ground. The place was in a dense forest.

It was night, Joydutta was busy with accounting work along with his son on the boat. From the cremation ground side, a girl of dark complexion, with long hair, wide eyes, with smiling face came near Joydutta and asked “what is there in your boat”. Joydutt was busy. He felt disturbed. He tried to concentrate on his work without looking at the girl. But the girl kept on asking the same question again and again. He then answered in annoyance “ash”.   The girl left the boat immediately. Relationships between the girl’s coming and sudden existence not known at that time.

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Relationships between: Image-Road to Mandir

The next morning, Joydutta found all his valuable goods have turned into ash. Even his only son expired in a cholera attack within a short time. Joydutta broke down.

The boatmen and servants of Joydutta encountered an unbelievable incident at that time. A dead fish became alive when they were cleaning the fish in a nearby pond before cooking. They told the story to Joydutta. They were confident that the dead body of Joydutta’s son will get his life back if he touches the water of that pond. So, they brought the dead body to bathe in the pond. The young man became alive. Joydutta was very happy.

That night Goddess Tara came in the dream of Joydutta in the guise of a little girl and told him about her greatness. She left before morning light came.

Joydutta  told in his dream, about a stone idol under a very old shetshimul (white bombax ceiba) tree in the forest. Joydutta discovered that stone idol from that place also discovered the footmark of Ma Tara and a Shiva Linga stone. The relationships between Ma Tara in the guise of a small girl, and Joydutta established.

Joydutta builds a temple in the sacrate place with his own money and installs the stone idol of Ma Tara in the temple. He arranged worshipping on daily basis and Bhog regularly. Relationships between Ma Tara and Joydutta helped to establish the mandir.

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Relationships between: Image- Ma Tara

 

The story of the building of the temple is in the mouth of the people and is coming generation after generation. No written history is available.

It believed that Tarapith is not one of the 51 Shaktipeeths but one of the 108 Peeths. It believed that half eye of Sati had fallen here. In the Shivcharitra text, it  said that the eyes fall in the Tarapith. Tarapith also called Mahapeeth.

There are three entrances in the east, west, and south direction for entry on the platform of Tarapith temple. On the front side of the temple, there is a commentary craft on terracotta stones. Which is venerated from Ramayana, Mahabharata, and many mythological events. Apart from this, there is a newly constructed Natya Mandir in front of the temple. In which morning and evening, Tara Vandana by countless devotees and music composed by devotee Kabir keeps resonating.

There is a temple of Chandrachud Shiva in the courtyard of the temple. There is a Vishnu temple adjacent to the Shiva temple. Where Lord Vishnu worshiped in a craft form. Along with this, there is also an idol of vehicle Garun and Hanuman ji. There is an idol of seeker Vamakhepa in the temple of Tulsi Manch, Narayan Mandir, attached Bamdev at the entrance of Vishnu temple.

Also rising from the ghat built to touch the water of the living pool Pushkarini, there are two Vishnu idols in the Vasudev temple on the right side, which  ethically worshiped as Shashti Mata. Probably both the idols belong to the Gupta era. Attached to the Vishram Mandir is the Mother’s Vishram Mandir. Aarti  held here in the morning and evening. During the evening aarti, instruments like dhol, shehnai, and gati played. At 4 o’clock the priest, whose turn it is, opens the temple.

Seeing the Dhyanamayo Tara Maa adorned in a mask, a garland of hair and a garland of flowers, the soul of the devotees  relieved. After the Mangal Aarti, the worship of the priests begins. Bhog offered to the mother between 12 noon and 1 pm.

In the evening, Sandhya Aarti  followed by Adishila Shilammayi form. After that the temple closed at 10 pm, on some special occasions like two Ashtami, both Chaturdashi, Purnima, Amavasya, Sankranti, night special worship, Aarti and Bhog request  organized on both sides of the month (Krishna Paksha and Shukla Paksha). . It  forbidden to take a picture of the mother without the permission of the priest. The spire of the temple is 70 feet high and decorated with modern artwork in green and white color. The red flag  always hoisted on the summit.

The entire part of the temple decorated with stones and tiles. There is an ancient gate in front of the sanctum sanctorum of the temple, which is painted with ocher color and red paint. There is a grill in the iron pipe on the way to have a long chain for the devotees to see. Which is painted with a red belly.

The area of ​​the Devi temple is one and a half bighas. There are 230 serving priests of the mother. The employees are 50. There are about 2000 shops for fruits, flowers, prasad, and photos. Two thousand devotees, worship on the same day. There are a lot of crowds on Tuesdays and Saturdays number is about 3 to 5 thousand. Every year 25 lakh devotees do darshan and worship.

Who Rebuilt the Temple again?

 

In the year 1743 approximately, the temple rebuilt. The old temple was too old to remain erect. Ramjiban Choudhury, an important employee of Raja Udaynaryan Roy of Rajshahi rebuilt the temple. Ramjiban not only build the temple, but he also built Chandrachur Temple, a big tank named Tarasagar. He helped to build a Shiva Temple and one more Tara Temple in Kaleswar village.

Ramjiban arranged daily Puja and Bhog at Tara Ma temple and Chandrachur Temple. Joydutta appointed Bhirab Thakur, the first purohit. Ramjiban appointed Gangaram Thakur as purohit. Bhirab Thakur’s 13th generation was Gangaram Thakur.

The mandir reconstructed once again by Jagannath Roy, a zamindar of Mallarpur at approximately 1840.

 

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Relationships between: Image – Bamakepa

 

Who Was Bamakhepa: [4]

 

Bamakhepa was the last Tantric sadhak of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Bama was born at Atla village which was four kilometers away from Tarapith. His father Sarbananda Chattopadhyay and mother Rajkumari Devi were a religious couple and believers in God who had their second son Bama.

Sarbananda’s source of income was from service as a priest. For better income, he started a Jatra Dal (open-air drama group). He was good at Vocal music and Violine. Rama and Bama were two brothers. They were good at singing too. Bama sometimes acts in the role of Krishna, sometimes as Ram. During his appearing, he unknowingly associated in detail with the characters he played. He was  very much religiously aligned, and simple, moody, little eccentric. He was a little different than other boys in his childhood.

 

Bamakhepa (left surpassed mad saint), attended his tantric spirituality with the aid of sadhana at Tarapith and became the head of the temple. He used to offer his worship with his left hand and his spirituality made him act in an unnatural manner.  He used to call in the name of Bamakhepa (1837– 1911) for this reason.

Bamakhepa was a high-level ascetic. Many great personalities came in touch with him. They wrote about him in their writings. Given below a small list of it.

  • Swami Vivekananda [5]
  • Dyananda Swaraswati [6]
  • Rabindranath Thakur [7]
  • Charan Kobi Mukundadas [8]
  • Maharshi Debendranath Thakur [9]
  • Swami Ramananda Bharati [10] and many others

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