Introduction- Charm of Goddess Chandi, The chindi Temple.:
In a remote village nestled in the picturesque mountains of Himachal Pradesh exists a temple dedicated to the revered Hindu goddess Durga. The reigning deity is perhaps Chandi, an aggressive avatar of Goddess Durga. Thousands of devotees visit Chindi Temple every year and the temple falls under the ancient Suket dynasty of Himachal Pradesh. The Goddess is known as Chindi Mata in the local areas. Ancient Ashthbhuji (Eight armed) Idol of Goddess Chindi has been established in the temple which is made up of stone and Idol of God Vishnu is also established along with the Goddess’s. Read till end to know more about Charm of Goddess Chandi, The chindi Temple.
Temple is located in Chindi and It is a small hamlet located in a Karsog valley. The Temple is located on the main road and is visible Chindi comes around 14 kms before Karsog town which is known for its spectacular views and ancient temples. The village itself is engulfed with beautiful apple orchards and hilly woods of pines and Deodars. The area is home to many species like musk deer, Ghoral, bears which are the part of nearby wildlife sanctuaries.
How to reach- Charm of Goddess Chandi, The chindi Temple:
Chindi Temple is easily approachable.
The availability of transport:
1. Airport facility- Not available (there is no nearby air service available)
2. Bus facility- Buses are easily available
3. Taxi facility: Taxi facility is also easily available and cab be booked easily
The distance by road is given below:
From Shimla – approx. 92 kms (via NH-44 approx time- 3 to 4 hrs)
From Sundarnagar – approx. 73 kms (via SH-13, approx time-3 hrs)
History of the Temple:
It is believed that the goddess appeared in the form of a girl. According to the story the goddess first reached and stayed at the place ‘Shiva’ after she left the place called ‘Jufar’. This is the temple which belongs to the God Mahasu. It is said that God /mahasu accepted Goddess as his sister and he was the one who told her about the place Chindi.
After that she reached a village known as ‘Bajo’ and there she asked for water. There she was treated with lot of respect which made her so happy that she declared that place as her maternal home and also promised that she will visit this place after every 3 or 5 years. The interesting fact that this is still practiced here. After this goddess reached ‘Bakhrot’ where she declared this place as pious. Every year in the fair is celebrated here in Shravan month.
Later she reached the place called ‘Bahog’ and it belonged to the demons. When these demons disrespected goddess then she killed them. Also she cursed that this place will never have any vegetation and till today there is no kind of vegetation available at this place. At last she finally reached Chindi and got mesmerized by its beauty and she then decided to stay here forever.
Interesting fact: Power of Goddess Chindi
- It is believed that if a devotee of the Goddess wish for something from true heart then she fulfill their wish. Also people visit this temple from far away places to pray for the good health and well being from the deity. Goddess also boon childless couple with a child and prosperity if asked with good will.
- What makes the Chindi temple different from other temples in the country that map of the temple is believed to prepared not by humans but the ants. Yes, you heard it right. It is difficult to believe but this is one of the interesting fact about the temple. The Goddess appeared in the dream of the local priest and informed him about this map prepared by the army of the ants. The temple has to be built on the same map and thats how the shrine came into existence.
- Chindi Temple fair held every year where the Goddess visit the nearby scared places in her chariot but It is said that she do not cross nala (stream) and also do not stay anywhere for even one night.
- During the fair time when goddess comes out of main temple then the whole hill area gets covered with fog and it always starts raining because no other Devta (God) is allowed to see the Goddess dancing. I was lucky enough to witness this fact by myself and was also amazed to see the energy and the whole spiritual environment around.
The Architecture of the Temple is just amazing. The temple complex comprises of the entry gate, Main temple, one another building and circular step well. All these are highly ornamented and use of murals and sculptures dedicated to nature like vegetation and animals like tiger, lion, elephant, snake, birds and deer etc.
The first things one will notice is a beautiful entrance gate after the staircase. This is made in stone, wood and slate. There is tiger lying at top of the gate and it seems that he is guarding the temple complex.
Murals and sculptures showing vegetation, Lord Ganesha, snake and lion and Beautiful small wooden wind chimes were paced at all ends of the gate and one big wind chime is placed in the center. Other small pendants or chimes also hanging from the edge of the roof.
The main temple building is the one where the idol of Goddess is established. It is a single floored building with interesting roof structure which is a combination of gabled and Pagoda style roof which has been supported by using the wooden posts. The structure is made majorly of stone and horizontal wooden post has been used in the middle and The roof is made majorly with wood and traditional slates has been used to cover it.
There is a porch with the wooden columns and mural of the Goddess has been carved in the front of the temple. The doors and windows has amazing intricate carved out detailing of other Hindu God and Goddess. A carved deer head was placed on the roof of the main shrine and Tiger statues were guarding the gate. Small pendants and chimes handing from the edges of the roof which is the part of the ornamentation and this small detailing helps the temple to stand out.
This building stands just opposite to the main temple. It is a two story building and it is fully made in wood and also the facade is covered in wood as well. The ground floor of the building consists of the kitchen area which is used to make prasad (food offering) for the Goddess and also the Dhaam (feast) prepared during fairs and festivals for the devotees visiting the temple.
The upper floor is used as a storage area for the religious stuff which belongs to the goddess like Chariot, clothes and other important belonging of the goddess. A big mural has been carved at the top of the building. The upper floor has a running corridor with series of wooden columns. Roof of this building is also the combination of gable and Pagoda style and one of the main focus element on the roof is wooden eagles with open features has been sculpted. Chimes has been added to enhance the beauty of this structure.
Circular Step well:
There is a circular step well right at the entrance of the temple. It step well is made in stone and no one is allowed to enter it, fencing has been done around it. It only open when the goddess visit near by places during fair. This is dedicated to the Chindi Goddess and mostly can be seen filled with water at any time of the year.
Interior of the Temple:
The interiors of the temple is as amazing as its exteriors. Whole interiors are made in intricate wooden carving work. These carvings are related to Hindu mythology and Gods. Also the Idol of chindi Goddess is placed in the temple.
This was all about the Charm of Goddess Chandi,The Chindi Temple it is one of the good example of temple architecture of northern India. I hope you have found this article interesting and If you liked this blog Charm of Goddess Chandi,The Chindi Temple, please let me know through your comments. Please share it with other people who are passionate about architecture and design. Contact us in case of any queries and also read my previous blogs related to architecture and travel. Be safe and remain indoor during this tough time. Thank you.