Tripura Sundari Temple, Udaipur, Agartala

Journey to Tripura Sundari Temple: A historic blend of myth and devotion over five centuries.

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The Tripura Sundari Temple, also known as Matabari, is a renowned Hindu temple located in Udaipur, Gomati district, about 55 km from Agartala, the capital of Tripura, India. It is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas and holds immense religious significance. Here’s a detailed overview:

Historical Significance and Architecture

1. Historical Background:

  • Legend: The temple's origin is steeped in a fascinating legend involving King Dhanya Manikya, who ruled Tripura in the late 15th century. According to the tale, the king had a dream in which Goddess Tripura Sundari instructed him to initiate her worship on a hilltop near Udaipur, the then capital of his kingdom. Upon investigating, the king discovered that the hilltop already housed a temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. This revelation led to a dilemma, as he couldn’t initially reconcile the idea of establishing a Shakti idol in a Vishnu temple. The divine vision reoccurred the following night, leading the king to understand that Vishnu and Shakti are different manifestations of the same Supreme Deity (Brahman). Consequently, the temple of Tripura Sundari was established around 1501 CE. This legend underscores the unity between Vaishnavism (worship of Vishnu) and Shaktism (worship of Shakti).
  • Establishment: King Dhanya Manikya of the Manikya Dynasty built the temple in 1501 AD.
  • Architectural Style: The temple is constructed in a typical Bengali hut style, with a conical dome and square sanctum. It stands on a small hillock, enhancing its visual appeal.

2. Architecture and Design:

  • Main Deity: The temple enshrines Goddess Tripura Sundari (also known as Devi Tripureshwari), a form of Parvati. The idol is around 5 feet high and made of Kasti stone.
  • Second Deity: The temple also houses another idol of Goddess Chandi, known locally as Chhotima, which is 2 feet high and sits on a lion.
  • Temple Structure: The temple's design is simple yet captivating, featuring a traditional Bengali thatched roof structure known as Ek-ratna, and a sanctum with a vestibule.

Religious Importance

  1. Significance as a Shakti Peetha:
  • Shakti Peetha: It is one of the 51 revered Shakti Peethas, where the divine feminine energy, Shakti, is worshiped. These sites are scattered across the Indian subcontinent and are considered powerful places of worship.
  1. Festivals and Rituals:
  • Diwali and Durga Puja: These are the major festivals celebrated at the temple, attracting thousands of devotees.
  • Rath Yatra: A significant annual event where the idols of the deities are taken out on chariots, known as the “Maa Tripura Sundari Rath Yatra.”
  • Kartik Purnima: Another important festival marked by special rituals and festivities at the temple.

Who is Tripurasundari?

Devi Tripurasundari, also known as Shodashi or Lalita, is an important Goddess, particularly in the Shakta tradition where she is revered as a form of the Divine Mother or Shakti. \

  • Name Significance: 'Tripurasundari' means 'The Beauty of the Three Worlds,' referring to her transcendental beauty that surpasses all three realms of existence – the physical, the astral, and the causal worlds.
  • Epithets: She is also known as Lalita (The simple one'), Rajarajeshwari ('The Supreme Sovereign Queen'), and Shodashi ('The One Who is Sixteen Years Old'), emphasizing her eternal youthful and majestic nature.

Iconography

  • Appearance: Devi Tripurasundari is often depicted as a youthful goddess, embodying supreme beauty and grace. She typically has four arms holding various symbols such as a noose (pasha), a goad (ankusha), a sugarcane bow, and five arrows made of flowers.

Color: She is usually shown as red or crimson in color, symbolizing her connection to the fire element and representing energy, passion, and action.

 

Location and Accessibility

  1. Geographical Location:
  • Address: Matabari, Udaipur, Gomati District, Tripura, India.
  • Coordinates: 23.5126° N, 91.4848° E.

 

Google Map Image

 

 

  1. Transport:
  • Nearest Airport: Maharaja Bir Bikram Airport in Agartala, around 55 km from the temple.
  • Road Connectivity: Well-connected by road from Agartala, with regular bus and taxi services.
  • Railway Station: Nearest major railway station is in Agartala.

Visitor Information

  1. Visiting Hours:
  • Temple Timings: Typically open from early morning till late evening. The temple opens around 4:00 AM and closes around 9:00 PM.
  • Best Time to Visit: October to March is ideal due to pleasant weather and major festivals.
  1. Facilities:
  • Accommodation: Several guesthouses and hotels in Udaipur and Agartala offer accommodation options.
  • Food: The temple area has numerous eateries and stalls offering local cuisine and snacks.
  1. Nearby Attractions:
  • Neermahal: A beautiful water palace located on the Rudrasagar Lake, about 45 km from the temple.
  • Ujjayanta Palace: Located in Agartala, this former royal palace now serves as a museum.
  • Sepahijala Wildlife Sanctuary: A biodiversity hotspot around 35 km from Agartala.

Cultural and Social Impact

  • Local Reverence: The temple plays a central role in the spiritual life of the local community, with many traditions and daily activities revolving around it.
  • Tourism: It is a major pilgrimage site and a key tourist attraction in Tripura, contributing to the local economy.

The Tripura Sundari Temple is not just a religious monument but also a symbol of Tripura's rich cultural heritage, drawing visitors from around the world.

 

Knowledge Bank

Which Goddess is known as Srividya?

Lalita Maha Tripurasundari is also known as Srividya.

Is Tripurasundari one among the Dasha Mahavidyas?

Yes. Tripurasundari is one among the Dasha Mahavidyas.

Quiz

Who is the consort of Tripurasundari?
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