13 August 2009

Shakthi Sthalams - Jwaala Temple in Himachal Pradesh

"JWAALA TEMPLE" lies in Himachal Pradesh state in the Himalayas. This famous shrine is part of the Ashtadasha Shakti Peethas (18 seats of mother goddess).
The famous Shloka of Adi Sankara "Lankaayaam Shaankari Devi" mentions JAWAALAAYAAM VAISHNAVI DEVI - meaning Vaishnavi Devi in the Jwaala temple. It is an unusual temple. There are no idols in the main shrine. Instead there are seven flames which have been burning since time immemorial.
The flames are mystical. They are burning on rocks. It are quite unique.The flames which change colors from blue to light blue to crimson to deep red are about 6 to seven inches long. The Shrine has one main flame on the back wall. One on the left side wall, two on the off centre of the back wall and three in a pit in the centre of the shrine.
Homas are performed by devotees to one of the flames by offering Ghee with Homa spoons.
As one performes Pradakshina of the temple and walks out to the Mantapa, Naivedyam (offerings) are given to Jwaala Devi. Sitting by the side of the pit, the devotees offer various fruit offerings. Interestingly, a lot of Ginger is offered as Naivedyam.

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