Shri Tuljabhavani Temple History


Along with temples of Renuka at Mahur, Mahalaxmi at Kolhapur, and Saptashringi at Vani, the temple of Bhavani at Tuljapur forms the four great Shaktipitha in Maharashtra. Many legends are associated with the temple. One legend involves a demon, Madhu-Kaitabh who was wreaking havoc upon the gods and humans. Unable to find any solution, they turned to Lord Brahma for help, and upon his advice turned to Goddess Shakti, who took up the form of a destroyer and powered by the other (Sapta) Mata Varaahi, Brahmi, Vaishnavi, Kaumaari Indraani and Saambhavi, vanquished the demon and restored peace. Legend also states that Bhavani finished another demon that had taken up the disguise of a buffalo (Mahisha), and took shelter on the Yamunachala Hill which is part of Balaghat mountain range. The Tuljabhawani temple is located on this hill. Another legend mentions the story of a sage known as "Kardam" After his death his wife "Anubuti" had performed a penance at the banks of river "mandakini " for Bhavani mata to look after her infant child. While performing the penance the demon known "Kukur" tried to disturb her penance during which the Goddess came to the aid of "Anubuti" and killed the demon "Kukur". From that day onwards the Goddess Bhavani came to be known as Tulja Bhavani.

The main entrance of the temple bears the name of Sardar Nimbalkar. The other two entrances are named after the parents of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj , that is Raja Shahaji Maharaj, and Rajmata Jijau. As one enters the Sardar Nimbalkar entrance, there is a temple dedicated to Markandeya Rishi on the right. After descending the stairs, one sees the main Tulja Temple. There is yagna kund (Holy Fire pit) in front of this temple. On the floor near two main gates (Raja Shahaji Mahadwar and Rajmata Jijau main gate), there are two libraries named, Shree Santh Dnyaneshwar Dharmik Library and Shree Tukaram Dharmik Library. After alighting from the stairs, there is `Gomukh Theerth` on the right side and `Kalakh`, also known as `Kallol Theerth` on the left side. Before entering the Sanctum sanctorum of the Goddess, devotees take a dip here in these theerths (Shallow tanks of "holy" water). There are also Amruth Kund and a Datta temple on the premises. A Siddhi Vinayak temple is situated on the left side of the main gate whilst on the right, there is a temple of Aadishakti, Aadimata Matangadevi. A temple of goddess Annapurna is also present in the main complex.

The idol of Goddess Tulja Bhawani is believed by her devotees to be `swayambhu` ("self-manifested" or "that which is created by its own accord"). The high granite idol is three-foot tall, with eight arms holding weapons, and bearing the head of the slain demon Mahishasura. The Goddess is also known as Tulaja, Turaja, Tvarita and Amba.

Tourist Point

Kalbhairav Temple :-

In the Tulja Bhavani Bhavani temple area in Tuljapur, there are temples of two Kshetrapal deities, Kalbhairav and Tolbhairav. In fact, there are many stations of Bhairava in Tuljapur area. Kalbhirav, Tol Bhirav, Unmatt Bhirav, Raktabhirav, Batbhirav are prominent among them. According to popular belief, Kalbhairav is even older than the Tulja Bhavani temple and Kalbhairav has been sitting here since before the goddess.

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Ghatshil Temple :-

The Ghat Shila Temple is dedicated to Lord Rama. An ancient rock temple located in the city of Tuljapur, this Temple has an interesting mythological adage behind it. It is believed that Lord Rama passed through these rocks (Shila) along with his brother Lakshman, in the mountains (Ghats) to search for Goddess Sita – his wife. It is believed that he was directed by Goddess Tulja Bhawani towards Lanka, the place where Sita was abducted to.

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Vishnu Tirth Tuljapur :-

The Vishnu Tirth is located to the northeast of the Tulja Bhawani Temple and has three entrances. It is similar to the Kallola Tirth Tank and is believed to be the site where the Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati come together. It is connected to the main Mandir via stone steps. It is a popular spot amongst devotees who come here to take a holy bath to cleanse their sins.

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Kallola Tirth Tank :-

Kallola Water Tank is a huge water tank situated in the first stage of the Tuljapur Temple – at the Prakara Temple. The tank is close to 40 ft by 20 ft in dimension, circumvented by a wall on all sides. Legend has it that the sacred water of the three holy rivers of Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati merge together in this tank, post an invite from Lord Brahma.

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Papanash Tirth :-

The Papanashi Tirth is one of the most noteworthy water tanks in Tuljapur. Papanashi literally translates to ‘water destroying sins’ and the place is credited with helping devotees wash off their sins. This tirth tank is situated outside the Tulja Bhawani Temple, about 500 m away near the circuit house.This tank goes back to several centuries and is covered in stone.

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Bharati Buva Math :-

The Bhartibuacha Matha (Maherghar) is located on the west side of Tuljabhavani Mandir. To visit this ancient and historical place, one needs to go through the Shivaji Darwaja, behind the Tuljabhavani Mandir. Then, the Aradhwadi is crossed, after which you will find the Matha.Bharatibuva is the incarnation of Lord Shiva and Goddess Bhavani comes to play saripath with him

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