Devotees throng Assam's Kamakhya temple for Kumari Puja

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Guwahati, Sep 24 (ANI): Hundreds of devotees thronged revered Kamakhya temple in Assam state on Thursday for Kumari Puja organised during Hindu festival of Navratri, in which young girls are worshipped.

Kumari Puja is held at the Kamakhya temple every year prior to Durga Puja celebrations that began on Saturday and end on "Navami" (the ninth day of the Navratri festival). The tradition is as old as that of the origin of Kamakhya temple.

It is believed that the Goddess, although omnipresent, surely exists in the virgin. Reverence to female children as goddesses is an age-old custom of India.

The Kamakhya temple situated in Guwahati, main city of Assam, on the banks of river Brahmaputra, is dedicated to goddess Kamakhya, consort of Shiva, Hindu God of destruction.

It is believed that at Kamakhya, the Goddess appears in the form of a virgin. So some of the pilgrims worship the living virgin as Goddess in this temple.

Worship of a living woman as Goddess is of purely Tantric origin. It is stated that virgin worship is nothing but Shakti worship.

The virgin worship is performed along with Durga, Kali and other Mahavidyas. The salutation mantra of virgin worship is the same as vidya's salutation mantra. Sometimes, it is also seen that the virgin is fed and clad and saluted without any mantra. The tantrics believe that the virgin is the Goddess incarnate.

"Her name is not Kamakhya but Kamakshi. People come here as their wishes are fulfilled here and that's why we have come all the way from Bihar," said Chandreshwar Pathak, a devotee from eastern Bihar. (ANI)

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