One of Kolkata’s most respected and worshipped goddesses and among Bengalis is honored with her own temple. Specifically, the Dakshineshwar Temple honors Goddess Kali in her Bhavatarini guise. It is Bhavatarini who rescues her followers from the abyss of samsara.
A Glimpse of the Holy Site
Dakshineswar Kali, a famed Hindu navratna temple dedicated to Bhavatarini, a form of Goddess Kali, stands on the river’s Eastern bank Hooghly. She frees her followers from the ocean of existence and inspires the Bhavatarini form of Kali, which was constructed at Rani Rashmoni in 1855. Several rooms were constructed along the complex’s border walls in addition to the main shrine.
Several deities are honored with shrines in these chambers. Twelve are devoted to Shiva, one to Krishna and Radha, and one to Rashmoni the Queen. In addition, there is a ghat for riverside swimming. In addition, the temple has a well-known connection to Sri Ramakrishna, a respected yogi, mystic, and figure from nineteenth-century Bengal.
A History of Dakshineswar Kali
In addition to showing reverence to the deities, visitors can enjoy the stunning architecture and natural scenery. The temple dates back to 1847, founded by the affluent widow Rani Rashmoni. At the time, she intended to visit Benaras to honor the Goddess and demonstrate her devotion to her. But the Divine Mother, i.e., Goddess Kali, appeared in her visions before she could set sail with her convoy of 24 ships and a huge party.
The Goddess instructed her to place her idol on the banks of the Ganges in Kolkata, where she would, after that, appear to worshippers. Rani Rashmoni bought a 20-acre land from an Englishman and built a temple there in obedience to the directive. The construction of the temple took eight years and cost nine million rupees.
An Architectural Marvel
The temple was constructed between 1847 and 1855, and on the day of Snana Yatra (May 31) in 1855, a statue of the Goddess Kali was placed within. Dakshineswar Kali follows the Navratna style of Bengali architecture, characterized by its nine spires. The nine spires are on the upper two floors of the stair-accessible temple facing south.
The 100-foot-high inner sanctum sanctorum holds a statue of Kali, the Hindu goddess, atop Lord Shiva’s breast. These statues sit at the center of a massive silver lotus blossom. The perimeter of the temple grounds is lined with twelve Shiva temples. These statues are set atop silver lotuses with a thousand petals.
Dakshineswar Kali Temple Timings
Kali, the Goddess, is worshiped at the temple, and her silver statue rests atop a lotus. There are 12 smaller Shiva temples surrounding the big one. Guests are not required to donate to enter the temple. Sunday through Saturday, you can visit the temple. Temple hours are 6 AM to 12:30 PM and 3:30 PM to 8:30 PM daily.
The Bengali architectural style known as aat- chala is used to build these sacred sites. The temple also features Vishnu and Radha Kanta shrines to the northeast. The garba griha and the veranda are separated by a set of stairs.