Kalighat Kali Temple, Kolkata

Kalighat Temple, Kolkata Overview

Kalighat Temple is located in Kolkata, West Bengal. One of the 51 Shakti Sthals of India, it is one of the most visited Kali temples in India. The spot is where the toes of Sati's right foot fell during Shiva's Tandava dance. It is said that Kalighat was where Chowranga Giri, a Dasanami monk, worshipped Ma Kali with great austerity and has thus been known as a religious centre for Ma Kali worship for centuries. This 200-year-old temple embodies the principle that only divine knowledge can subsume sodomized ego, akin to an Asura. This transcendence will lead to moksha, as Ma Kali guides all through their devoted worship of her.

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Kalighat Temple
Kalighat Temple

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Temple Idols & Architecture

A 3ft high altar referred to as Shoshti Tala or Monosha Tala is placed in the temple complex. Three stones representing goddesses Shashthi (Shoshti), Shitala and Mangal Chandi are found here. A large rectangular platform called Natmandir was erected near the temple by Zamindar Kasinath Roy in 1835. A verandah called Jor Bangla stands between the Natmandir and sanctum sanctorum. Two sacrificial altars for animal sacrifices are placed here, known as Hari-Kath.

There is another Radha-Krishna Temple here known as Shyama-Raya temple. A separate kitchen here is used to make vegetarian bhog for Radha-Krishna. There is a sacred tank here as well which is known as Kundupurkar or Kalighat Temple Tank in which the 'Sati-Anga' (the right toe of Sati) was originally discovered. Sacred; bathing in these waters is known to bestow the gift of pregnancy.

Quick Facts & Tips

  • All priests who are women as the temple commemorates Kali femininity. 
  • Unlike most temples, there is no daily worship or food offering (Bhog). 

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