Maya Devi Temple, Haridwar, Uttarakhand
Maya Devi temple in the holy city of Haridwar is one of the 51 Shaktipeeths of India. In earlier days, Haridwar was known as Mayapuri. Maya Devi Temple is also a Siddha Peeth. This ancient temple which dates back to the 11th century CE is one of the few temples that has survived centuries of wear and tear and is well preserved.
In the days of creation, Daksha Prajapati organized a grand Yagya. He invited all Devi-Devtas, Rishis, and Munis to be a part of the ceremony. Prajapati Daksha was an ardent devotee of Lord Vishnu and had a severe dislike for Lord Shiva. He did not invite Lord Shiva, even though one of his daughters – Sati Mata, was married to Lord Shiva. Sati Mata was also not invited, but she went – arguing that one does not need an invitation to go to their parent’s house. There Prajapati Daksha insulted Lord Shiva in front of everyone present. Sati Mata could not bear this and ended Her life by entering the sacrificial fire. Lord Shiva was uncontrollably enraged when He heard. He took Sati Mata’s body and started His fearsome Tandav Nritya. This would have disastrous consequences for the world, so Lord Vishnu separated Sati Mata’s body from Mahadev by cutting it into 51 parts with His Sudarshan Chakra. A Shakti Peeth came to be at the places where the body parts fell.
Maya Devi Temple in Haridwar is where Sati Mata’s heart and navel fell. It is one of the three Siddha Peeths of Haridwar along with Mansa Devi and Chandi Devi temples.
Adhisthatri of Haridwar
Maya Devi is recognized as the Adhisthatri (Guardian) of Haridwar from the days the city was known as Mayapuri. The temple is considered one of the most important as it is a Shakti Peeth as well as a Siddha Peeth. Maya Devi is a loving and benevolent Mother always eager for the welfare of Her devotees. Navratri is celebrated with great zeal here and devotees come in large numbers during that period.
The Maya Devi Temple
Maya Devi Mandir is located near Har ki Pauri in Haridwar. In the sanctum of the temple is enshrined a Murti of Maya Devi – with four arms and three heads. Kali Mata can be seen on Her left side and Kamakhya Mata on Her right side. Besides these, there are two other Murtis of Goddesses. A circular path around the sanctum has depictions of the Dash Mahavidyas. Outside there is a smaller shrine dedicated to Chamunda Mata and Shitala Mata.
Maya Devi Temple Timings
- 06.00 am to 12 Noon
- 02:00 PM to 08:00 PM
How to reach Maya Devi Temple
- The nearest airport is Dehradun Airport, at a distance of 35 km from the temple.
- The nearest railway station is Haridwar, at a distance of 0.5 km from the temple.