Kalratri Devi Temple, Varanasi
|Architectural style:||Dravidian architecture|
When the evil demon Durgasur was to be killed, Kalratri was sent by Goddess as her special emissary. Kalratri created havoc by her exhalation which resulted in huge fireballs destroying the demon’s army. (Details given under Durga Devi).
After slaying the demon and taking the form of Durga Devi, Kashi Khand states that Durga Devi guards Kashi in form of various Shaktis/Devis at various places in Kashi. Kalratri is one of them.
Maa Durga’s seventh form is Kalratri. Her body is pitch black just like darkness. Her hair is in disorder. She has a garland around her neck that shines like lightning. She has 3 eyes that are round like the universe and give out lightning rays continuously. She exhales fire flames continuously through her nose. Her vehicle is a donkey. Her upper right-hand grants blessings and her lower right hand assure protection. Her upper left hand has an iron thorn and her lower left hand has a dagger.
Though her appearance is fearsome, she always grants auspicious boons. So her name is Shubhkari. Her devotees need not fear her. She destroys evil, so demons and ghosts run away even when somebody thinks about her. Her devotees are freed from fear (phobia) of fire, water, animals, enemies, night etc i.e. all kinds of fear.
Kalratri devi is considered to be very powerful.
Legend / Local stories
How to Reach:
Kalratri is located at D.8/17, Kalika Galli, which is a lane parallel to Annapurna – Vishwanath Lane. People can travel to Dasaswamedh by rickshaw and walk through the Gully to Visweshwar temple and after crossing Sakshi Vinayak, they may take right turn, climb a few steps and reach Kalika Galli through Shukreshwar.
Devotees worship Kalratri Devi during Navratri falling in September/October and some people refer regard this Goddess as a form of Kali. The road Kalika Galli is named after this Goddess. This temple is one of the Shakti Peets of Varanasi.
TYPES OF POOJA
The temple is open from 06.00 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. and from 04.00 p.m. to 10.30 p.m. Aarties are held in the morning and evening.
According to old-timers, Kalratri is a very powerful Devi and at any time, few old people can be seen in the temple premises deeply engrossed in prayers.