1. The Temple
The popular Bengali TV serial Rani Rashmoni, starring Ditipriya Roy, is about the life and times of the queen of Janbazaar in Kolkata. Rani Rashmoni is a historical figure who is known for her philanthropic works, her guts and giving the British a run for their money. Among her most notable works include the construction of Dakshineswar Kali Temple. Built in mid 19th century, the temple — situated in north Kolkata — became famous as the seat of mystic saint Ramakrishna Paramhansa. Till date, celebrities and dignitaries visit the temple at regular intervals. Want to know more details about the place ahead of Kali Pujo? Read on.
The Dakshineswar Kali Temple is located on the eastern banks of the Hooghly river. The presiding deity is Bhavatarini, an avatar of Kali. The temple compound comprises the nine-spired Kali temple along with a large courtyard, 12 shrines which are dedicated to Lord Shiva along the riverfront. There is also one shrine which is dedicated to the Rani of Janbazar.
2. Ramakrishna’s Association
Dakshineswar Kali Temple gained massive popularity early last century because of the saint Ramakrishna Paramhansa who counted the stalwarts of Bengal among his disciples and was the guru of Swami Vivekananda. Ramakrishna, who came here from Kamarpukur village in 1855, spent most of his life here.
3. Dream Sequence
It is told that while Rani Rashmoni was planning a pilgrimage to Benaras via the river Hooghly, but the night before she started, she had a dream where the goddess, in the form of Goddess Kali, appeared. She was told that there is no need to travel to Benaras. Instead, the queen should install Goddess Kali’s statue in a temple on the banks of the Hooghly and pray to her there.
4. Taking Shape
Rani Rashmoni didn’t waste time. She bought a 30,000 acre plot in Dakshineshwar from an Englishman and built the temple compound between 1845 and 1888. The idol was installed on the Snana Yatra day on May 31, 1855. More than a lakh Brahmins were invited from across India to mark the occasion.
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