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18 Mahashaktipeeth

The Shakti Peethas (holy places of cosmic power) are places of worship consecrated to the goddess 'Shakti', the female principal of Hinduism and the main deity of the Shakti sect. Shaktipeeth are sprinkled throughout the Indian subcontinent. This goddess is often associated both with Gorri / Parvati, the benevolent goddess of harmony, marital felicity and longevity, with Durga, goddess of strength and valour, and with Mahakali (the black one) , goddess of destruction of the evil.


According to legend, at some time in Satya Yuga, Daksha (who was the son of Lord Brahma) performed a yagna in a place called Kankhal (near Haridwar) This Yagya was named Vrihaspati Yagna .He performed this Yagna with a desire of taking revenge on Lord Shiva. Daksha was angry because his daughter Sati (one of his 27 daughters) had married the 'yogi' God Shiva against his wishes. Daksha invited all the deities to the yagna except for Shiva and Sati. The fact that she was not invited did not deter Sati from attending the yagna. She had expressed her desire to attend to Shiva, who had tried his best to dissuade her from going. Shiva eventually allowed her to go escorted by his ganas.

But Sati, being an uninvited guest, was not given any respect by his father. Further more, Daksha insulted Shiva. Sati was unable to bear her father's insults toward her husband, so she committed suicide by jumping into the yagna fire (sacrificial fire)

When Lord Shiva heard about her death he became furious. He along with his ganas (followers) went to the place where Daksha was performing his oblation,. The oblation site was completely destroyed by Shiva and his ganas (mainly by the great Veerbhadra) and killed Daksha.

Lord Shiva then carried the corpse of Sati and started dancing furiously all over the place like a lunatic. The other gods intervened to stop this dance.

To bring down his anger, Lord Vishnu severed the dead body with his Sudarshan chakra. Various parts of the body fell at several spots all through the Indian subcontinent and formed the sites of which are known as Shaktipeeth.

The modern cities or towns that correspond to these 64 locations can be a matter of dispute, but there are a few that are totally unambiguous, these are mentioned in the Ashta Dasa Shakthi Peetha Stotram by Adi Shankara. This list contains 18 such locations which are often referred to as Maha Shakthi Peeths


S. No.


Part of the body fallen

Name of Shakti


Trincomalee (Sri Lanka)


Shankari devi


Kanchi (Tamil Nadu)

Back part

Kamakshi Devi


Pradyumna* (West Bengal)

Stomach part

Srunkhala devi


Mysore (Karnataka)


Chamundeshwari devi


Alampur (Andhra Pradesh)

Upper teeth

Jogulamba devi


Srisailam(Andhra Pradesh)

Neck part

Bhramaramba devi




Mahalakshmi devi[9]



Right hand

Ekaveerika devi


Ujjain(Madhya Pradesh)

Upper lip

Mahakali devi


Pithapuram(Andhra Pradesh)

Left hand

Puruhutika devi


Purnagiri Temple,Tanakpur State
Uttrakhand India])


Purnagiri temple Tanakpur ,
Uttrakhand India


Draksharamam(Andhra Pradesh)

Left cheek

Manikyamba devi




Kamarupa devi


Prayaga(Uttar Pradesh)


Madhaveswari devi


Kangra(Himachal Pradesh)

Head part

Vaishnavi devi



Breast part

Sarvamangala devi


Varanasi(Uttar Pradesh)


Vishalakshi devi



Right hand

Saraswathi devi

[*] The temple is currently non-existent. Only a few ruins are found in these places. Instead, Sringeri in Karnataka is believed to be the Shakti Peeth of this aspect of the goddess.

Among these, the Shakti Peethas at Kamakhya, Gaya and Ujjain are regarded as most sacred as they symbolise three most important aspects of mother Goddess viz. Creation (Kamarupa Devi), Nourishment (Sarvamangala Devi/Mangalagauri) and Annihilation (Mahakali Devi).

When observed carefully one can see that they lie in a perfect straight line from Kamakhya to Ujjain via Gaya symbolizing that every creation in this universe will annihilate one day without fail.


Lankayam Shankari devi, Kamakshi Kanchika pure
Pradyumne Shrinkhala devi, Chamunda Krouncha pattane
Goddess Shankari in Sri lanka, Kamakshi in Kanchipuram,
Goddess Shrinkhala in Pradyumna and Chamunda in Mysore
Alampure Jogulamba, Sri shaile Bhramarambika
Kolha pure Maha lakshmi, Mahurye Ekaveerika
Goddess Jogulamba in Alampur, Goddess Brhamarabika in Sri Shailam,
Goddess Maha Lakshmi in Kolhapur and Goddess Eka veera in Mahur
Ujjainyam Maha kali, Peethikayam Puruhutika
Odhyane Girija devi, Manikya Daksha vatike
Goddess Maha Kali in Ujjain Purhuthika in Peethika,
Goddess Girija in Odhyana and goddess Manikya in the house of Daksha,
Hari kshetre Kama rupi, Prayage Madhaveshwari
Jwalayam Vishnavi devi, Gaya Mangalya gourika
Goddess Kama rupi in the temple of Vishnu, Goddess Madhevaswari in Allahabad,
The flame gving Goddess in Jwala muki and Mangala Gouri in Gaya.
Varanasyam Vishalakshi, Kashmire tu Saraswati
Ashtadasha Shakti peethani, Yoginamapi durlabham
Goddess Visalakshi in Varanasi, Goddess Saraswathi in Kashmir,
Are the 18 houses of Shakthi, which are rare even to devas.
Sayamkale pathennityam, Sarva shatri vinashanam
Sarva roga haram divyam, Sarva sampatkaram shubham

Om Shum…