The Puranas and other Hindu scriptures describe that Mother Goddess Shakti was consecrated in Asta Dasha Shakti Peethas (18 prominent temples). The origin or the story of Asta Dasha Shakti Peetha temples goes like this…..
Once, King Daksha Prajapathi wanted to perform a Yagna. Except Lord Shiva he invited all the Gods and Sages. Despite her fathers recklessness towards her husband, Goddess Dakshayani went to the Yagna and got insulted. With anger and shame, she jumped into the Yagnagunda (the sacred spot of Yagna) and sacrificed her life.
With knowing this Lord Shiva became very ferocious and carried Dakshayanis dead body on his arms. He performed ‘Ugrathandava or ‘Rudrathandava (a dance form of Lord Shiva when he is angry). Lord Shivas rudrathandava created a bit of deluge in all lokas.
To solve this great problem, Lord Vishnu slashed Goddess Dakshayanis dead body parts wqith his Sudrashana Chakra (the sacred discus). And the parts were fallen all over the places. The places where her body pars were fallen are worshipped as Astadasha Shakti Peethas (18 prominent temples of Mother Goddess – Shakti).
According to some Hindu Mythology books, the total number of Shakti Peethams is 108. And some more sacred texts describe that there are 51 prominet Goddess Shakti temples. But most people believe that the 18 Shakti temples are most auspicious Shakti Peethams, which are also referred as Astadasha Shakti Peethas.
List of 18 Most Auspicious Goddess Shakti Temples (Astadasha Shakti Peethas):
- Trincoli (Srilanka) – Shankari Devi … Read more about Trincomalee Shankari Devi Temple
- Kanchi (Tamilnadu) – Kamakshi Devi
- Pradyumnama (Hugli – Kolkatta ) – Shrunkala Devi
- Mysore (Karnataka) – Chamundi Devi
- Alampur (Andhra Pradesh) – Jogulamba
- Kolhapur (Maharashtra) – Malalakshmi Devi … Read more on Kolhapur Temple
- Srisailam (Andhra Pradesh) – Bramaramba Devi
- Mahoor (Maharashtra) – Ekaveera devi
- Ujjaini (Madhya Pradesh) – Mata Mahakali
- Pithapuram (Andhra Pradesh – Puruhuthika Devi … More on Pithapuram Puruhuthika Temple
- Jajpur (Orissa) – Girija Devi .. Read about Jazpur Girija Devi Temple
- Draksharamam (Andhra Pradesh) – Mata Manikyamba .. More on Draksharamam Manikyamba Temple
- Hari Kshetram (Assam) – Mata Kamarupika (Kamakhya Devi)
- Alahabad (Uttar Pradesh) – Madhaveshwari devi
- Jwala (Jammu Kashmir) – Vaishnavi devi … Festivals at Jwala Vaishnodevi Temple
- Gaya (Bihar) – Mangalya Gauri devi .. More about Gaya Mangala Gauri temple
- Kasi or Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) – Mata Vishalakshi
- Srinagar (Kashmir) – Mata Saraswati devi