Shri Mahamaye Gudi
Srimath Bhuvanendra Teertha Swamiji. He personally designed the image and conducted the Pratishta.. The temple has been completely renovated in the recent years. Now it is surrounded by a herbal garden, a water tank- Kalpa Teertha Goshala in its serene atmosphere. Devotees visiting the main temple complete their pilgrimage with a visit to the beautiful and peaceful shrine of mother “MHAMMAYEE”. Truly, visit to Manjulakshetra is not complete without a visit to this holy shrine.
What is “Kushasthali? Kushasthali – literally means a place where Kusha grass grows. Kusha or Darbha is a must for all Brahminical rituals. Hence, wherever Saraswats Migrated and settled, they have named the place Kushasthali, whether it is Kurukshetra (Haryana), Gowda Desha (Bengal), Ujjayini (M.P.) , Dwaraka (Gujarat) or Goa. Manjeshwar being one of the oldest settlements of GSB’s , it is found appropriate to call the Guddekeri portion of Manjeshwar as “Kushasthali”.
According to legend, in 1851, A.D. one day oracle of manjeshwar temple, proclaimed through the Patri Vedamurthi Raghu Bhat that some feminine shakthi Devatas have started from North and that they may come to Manjeshwar also. Oracle also asked the devotees to be careful and not to fear. Accordingly after some days a coconut frond fell on a woman while washing clothes, when the Oracle was in progress inside the temple. Immediately after that the woman got into a trance and came running to the temple, where oracle Patri was standing. She began to challenge the power of Oracle. Then Oracle realised that the trance is that of Mahamaya. Oracle after showing its superior power gave permission to the shakti Devata to stay in the vicinity of the temple and consecrated Her on the gajasthambha in front of the temple. Even during the suppressed state, the Devata used to give some troubles to children and ladies. The Oracle on all such occasions warned her and kept her under control. Finally the Devata realising the superior power many times to consecrate. Her in some other suitable place with due arrangements for her worship, so that she will live safely. She also promised that She will serve the Lord for ever and will bestow happiness and prosperity on the Devotees. Accordingly Oracle granted her demand and ordained that a proper gudi should be constructed at a suitable place so that Devi can stay permanently in Manjeshwar for the well being and prosperity of the Devotees.
As ordained by the oracle, the consecration of Mahamaya Vigraha at the newly constructed gudi at Guddekeri in Manjeshwar was done by the holy hands of Srimad Bhuvanendra tirtha Swamiji on Vaishaka Shuddha Chaturthi, Prajotpathy Samvatsara of Saka year 1793, which corresponds to 24-4-1871. It is said that the construction of the gudi was financed by Narsayya Kini family of Manjeshwar. It is also said that the Vigraha (Idol) of Mahamaya was given by Swamiji himself. Traditionally it is believed that, since the coconut frond fell on the body of woman and she immediately got a trance of Shakti devata Mahamaya, the goddess Mahamaya also was named as “ Kalpavriksha Mahamaya”, as the coconut tree is also termed as Kalpavriksha.
The name as Kalpavriksha may be interpreted another way also – Kalpavrikshais a divine tree, which means ‘wish – yeilding tree’, i.e., the tree which yields what ever is begged for. The Goddess Mahamaya also bestows on the devotees whatever is begged from her, just like a wish yielding tree kalpavriksha. Thus She is praised as “ Sarvarthasadhike” (one who fulfils all the desired things). In this sense also, this goddess may be termed as Kalpavriksha Mahamaya. There seems to be Justification in this interpretation, as Mahamaya of Kumbla Mahamaya temple ( the idol of which belonged to the family of Upendra Bhat who came to Kumbla from Thalassery) is also known as Kalpavriksha.