Dedicated to Goddess Shakti or Sati, the Mangla Gauri Temple belongs to the 15th century. Widely worshiped in the region, Goddess Mangla Gauri is considered the deity of benevolence. The temple is also revered as it is one of the 18 mahashaktipeeths (devotional shrines where the body parts of Goddess Sati fell), and stands atop the Manglagauri Hill. During the monsoon months, on every Tuesday, a special worship ceremony is conducted. Women fast so that their family prospers and husband achieves success and fame. The worship offering includes 16 types of bangles, seven varieties of fruits and five sweets. An idol or photo of the goddess is first bathed in milk, curd and water and then robed in red cloth. Vermilion, henna and kohl are applied to the deity, which is then placed on a wooden plank. Fruits, sweets and ornaments are kept in front of the idol or photo and then the prayers begin.

Legend has it that after Goddess Shakti’s body was shredded by Lord Vishnu’s sudarshana chakra, her breasts fell here. From then on, Goddess Mangla is worshipped in the form of breast symbol signifying nourishment.

Small shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva and images of Goddess Durga, Goddess Dakshnia Kali and Goddess Mahishasura Mardini, the different forms of Goddess Sati, are also worth a visit in the temple complex. The temple finds mention in the Padma Purana, Vayu Purana, Agni Purana as also Shri Devi Bhagwat Purana and Markandey Purana. The complex also has temples of Maa Kali, Lord Ganesha, Lord Hanuman and Lord Shiva.

As one starts climbing up the small hillock on which the temple is situated, a not-to-be-missed temple is of Bhima, one of the five Pandava brothers. There is a knee impression, which locals claim belongs to him as it was here that Bhima did shraddha-karma. It is known as Bhimvedi Gaya.

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