Goddess Bagalamukhi & her consort Lord Shiva

Clad in a yellow dress with a golden complexion or Pitambara Maa, as she is fondly called in Northern parts of India, Goddess Bagalamukhi occupies a golden throne in an ocean of nectar full of yellow lotuses. Legend has it that a demon named Madan was rewarded the vak siddhi by virtue of having undertaken austerities. This meant that whatever he uttered materialised. He abused this boon by killing people. The gods sought out Goddess Bagalamukhi and she willingly rescued them.

She holds a cudgel in her right hand. With her left she pulls the tongue of Madan giving substance to her face that captures and controls- an exhibition of stambhana. This power to stun and paralyse her enemy into silence is what enamours the followers of this one of a ten goddesses (mahavidyas) in Hinduism.

It is said that those who worship. Goddess Bagalamukhi can make their enemies deaf and dumb, destroy their intelligence and turn their wealth into poverty. She represents the knowledge that everything can turn into its opposite and enables us visualize failure in success, death in life and joy from sorrow. Specifically her Magical powers, also known as Siddhis- “accomplishments” or “perfections”- is what sets her apart from other Mahavidyas.

There is also this belief that if you worship all the deities in a Goddess Bagalamukhi temple it’s the equivalent of having worshipped 330 million gods and goddesses at one place. Major temples for Goddess Bagalamukhi are found in Bankhandi in Himachal Pradesh, Nalkheda at Shajapur and Pitambara Peth at Datia in Madhya Pradesh. Nepal, where she enjoys Royal patronage, hosts a large temple at Newar city of Patan.

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