Ma Kali is the almighty and the absolute being of Calcuttans and Dakshineshwar, a prominent temple of Goddess Kali.
Even I am regular worshipper of Ma Kali but I generally used to go to Kalighat Temple. However this new year I got the chance to be at the Dakshineshwar temple.
Despite the movement of so many people, the place seemed to be very peaceful and serene. When I entered the main temple complex, on the right side there was a covered lane sort of place where there were number of shops from where I bought flowers and prasad for my puja. If you are carrying some stuff you can easily keep them under the shopkeeper’s custody from where you buy, as for that matter I also did that.
Then when I came out of the place, I found that there is a very nice arrangement for us to deposit our shoes, as Hindus don’t go to temples or mandirs with the shoes on. The boy out there charges Re 1 for a pair of shoes we keep.
And now when finally I was done with all the preparations I went inside in the temple. I had to stand in a long queue as it was the first day of the year but generally if you go on normal days, you don’t get such huge crowd.
Note: Tuesdays and Saturdays are always an exception – don’t expect thin crowds on those days.
But trust me the waiting in the queue was worth it. After standing for about 1 hour I finally got Ma Kali’s darshan and I did my puja.
Then as I came down, right opposite to the temple of Ma Kali, there are twelve individual temples of Lord Shiva. That is why, these temples are called “Barah Mahadev“. One by one I visited all of them.
Now after having done with my puja, as I was leaving I noticed that there is Ganga Ghat right inside the temple campus and I went there and saw people having bath out there. The water was so pure and cold; I went down a few stairs to feel the water and washed my feet and face. It felt so nice!
Finally I came out of the temple having a feeling which was so pure and new.
Some facts about the temple: Rani Rashmoni is the person who thought about the temple and Ramkrishna Ji was the priest of the mandir then. The bedroom of Shri Ramkrishna Ji is still there in the temple boundary.
Now reading all these you must be worrying how to go to Dakshineshwar? Well reaching the Dakshineshwar mandir is quite easy and convenient. You can come directly by a train from sealdah station or by boat from Belur. There are a lot of buses from Esplanade also.
One more thing: Don’t forget to visit Belur Math, the tranquil monument with lush lawns and gardens which as said earlier will be just a boat ride away from Dakhshineshwar.
One more thing which I forgot to add: when you go via road, don’t forget to have a look at the mandir from Bally Bridge; the view is amazing!