Holy Pilgrimage - Hindu temples in USA
Kali Mandir, Laguna Beach, CA
P.O. 4700, Laguna Beach, CA 92652 U.S.
About Kali Mandir
Divine Mother KaliIn India there has been an unbroken tradition of worshiping God in the form of the Divine Mother Kali for thousands of years. Mother Kali is She from Whom all are born and into Whom all must eventually return. She is the ultimate power of creation, preservation and destruction. Although Ma Kali’s iconography has layers of symbolic meaning, Her essence is simple: transformation. She transforms the lives of those who worship Her.
Kali MandirFounded in 1993 by Elizabeth Usha Harding, author of Kali, The Black Goddess of Dakshineswar, Kali Mandir has grown into a beautiful blend of sincere Indian and Western devotees from different lineages, as well as aspirants with no formal affiliations. Kali Mandir was formally registered as a California non-profit, tax-exempt religious organization in 1995.
Ma Bhavatarini Kali of DakshineswarKali Mandir is closely associated with the Dakshineswar Kali Temple, located in Kolkata, India. Founded in 1855 by a courageous woman named Rani Rasmani, Dakshineswar became world famous as the stage for Sri Ramakrishna’s Divine Play. This temple is also associated with the lives of many great saints such as Swami Vivekananda, Paramahansa Yogananda, Sri Anandamayi Ma, Swami Ramdas and Neem Karoli Baba. Today millions of devotees from all over the world come to Dakshineswar throughout the year to worship the Divine Mother as Ma Bhavatarini Kali (Savior of the Universe).
Ma Dakshineswari Kali of Laguna BeachSri Haradhan Chakraborti and Sri Pranab Ghosal, Dakshineswar temple priests, brought a beautiful stone image of Kali from India. The Kali image was ritually awakened in Laguna Beach in 1993 and given the name Ma Dakshineswari Kali (the Goddess from Dakshineswar). Since that day, Ma has been formally worshiped at Kali Mandir during daily pujas, monthly amavasyas (New Moon worship) and yearly festivals. She is worshiped along with other forms of divinity such as Lord Ganesha, Shiva, Vishnu, Radha & Krishna, Hanuman, and Ma Durga.
Aims and IdealsKali Mandir aims to create a tangible spiritual atmosphere through daily worship, ritual, singing, chanting, volunteer service, reading of the scriptures and spiritual discussions.
Open to all religious denominations, Kali Mandir functions as a traditional Hindu temple dedicated to the worship of the Divine Mother Kali in the mother/child relationship.
The mode of worship is conducted in a similar manner as that of the Dakshineswar Kali Temple (with the exception that we are strictly vegetarian). We implicitly follow the spiritual tradition of Sri Ramakrishna, Holy Mother Sarada Devi and Swami Vivekananda.
Kali Mandir stands for universal spirituality. No practices associated with a sectarian cult or left-handed forms of Tantra are performed here. Worship is done in accordance with dakshina-marg or the right-handed path of Tantra which adheres to conservative Hindu norms in the mood of selfless devotion.
While devotees may have their individual gurus, there is no guru or personality cult at Kali Mandir.Our spiritual focus is on the awakened deity Ma Dakshineswari Kali and Sri Ramakrishna.
Promoting traditional Goddess worship, Kali Mandir aims to remove misconceptions about such worship.We propagate a spiritual culture that forms a bridge between East and West.
Kali Mandir strives to be a place where people are inspired to lead ideal lives of love and service.
As a purely spiritual organization Kali Mandir has no affiliation with any political organizations anywhere in the world.
Kali Mandir has no membership and is financially supported by voluntary donations. A small portion of income is derived from our gift shop named Ancient Mother.
Amavasya (new moon) Kali Puja will be performed at Kali Mandir on Tuesday, August 6th. The puja will also be broadcast live from 7PM until 10PM (California time).
This classic book by Usha Harding gives an intimate and detailed description of Kolkata’s famous Dakshineswar temple and Ma Bhavatarini, the Kali worshiped by Sri Ramakrishna.
10:00 am ~ 12:00 noon
6:00 pm ~ 8:00 pm
Arati is performed daily at 11:30am & 6:30 pm
Out of consideration for our neighbors and respect for the ashram schedule, please strictly observe temple hours.
Please help us maintain the sanctity and purity of the temple. We humbly request that you bath before before coming to the temple and wear clean clothes and dress modestly: do not wear shorts (with the exception of small children), tank-tops or short skirts. Do not wear leather in the temple or bring meat, fish, eggs, alcohol or illegal drugs onto the property. Please turn off your cell phone and do not point your feet toward the deity when seated in the temple. All are welcome to bring offering for Ma such as flowers fruit, sweets, ghee, sesame oil, perfume, incense and new jewelry or new saris. Food and sweets for offering must not contain meat, eggs, gelatin, onion or garlic. Please read ingredients carefully.
The Kali Mandir Online Library is a collection of articles and other writings on Goddess Kali, Mother worship, Her saints and the Tantric tradition. The library is intended as a source of information and inspiration, and we shall be updating it periodically. Copyright is with the authors and original publishers.
Going Green with Solar Panels
Please help us go green & lower our steep electric bills. We are currently talking to a few solar panel vendors trying to figure out the best and most cost-effective way to install solar panels. As for now, the bids we have been getting are around $30,000. Donations are tax-deductible and will be gratefully accepted.
My Mother: Ma KaliLife becomes fruitful and sweet when we establish an intimate relationship with God that permeates through our daily activities. Ma is mine. She is always with me. Fear and anxiety may come but they’ll pass quickly like clouds driven by strong wind. To quote a wise man: “Don’t tell God how big your problem is. Tell your problem how big your God is.”
We must feel the Divine Presence in our daily life. Mere intellectual acceptance that God exists cannot hold us during turbulent times. Feel the Divine Mother with your entire being. Ma is everywhere all the time, but She is most accessible where devotees congregate. That’s why temples are important. A temple is like a bank where many devotees deposit their devotion and their prayers. The devotees’ love makes the place holy.
Get InvolvedKali Mandir exists because of Ma and Her devotees. We all depend on each other.
There are many ways of getting involved and becoming part of Ma’s worship.
Special PujaOffered on Your Behalf Invoke the Divine’s presence and blessings in your life by having a special puja performed either at Kali Mandir or in your own home.
What is Puja?Revealed by the ancient sages, puja is the science and art of invoking and honoring the living presence of God. The Sanskrit mantras and practices of traditional puja come to us from the Vedas, Puranas and Tantras. The main goal of puja is the offering of our loving devotion to the Lord of our heart. Puja awakens divine vibrations and aligns us with cosmic forces, bringing peace, solace, sustenance and happiness into our lives.
Special pujas offered on your behalfSwami Bhajanananda Saraswati or Brahmachari Parameswara Chaitanya, Ma Dakshineswari’s monastic pujaris (priests), who are trained in the technical nuances of Hindu ritual, performs most special pujas. These sacred ceremonies, performed either at Kali Mandir or in your home, take approximately one and a half hours and include:
- Kalash sthapana—establishing the Divine Presence within a sacred vessel.
- Ganesha puja—worship of the Remover of Obstacles
- Navagraha puja—worship of the nine planetary deities
- Lakshmi puja—worship of the Goddess of Auspiciousness
- Ishta/kula devata puja—worship of your personal and/or family deity
- Homa/Agni Hotra—offerings into the sacred fire
Special pujas performed at Kali MandirSpecial pujas can be performed at Kali Mandir on your behalf, or on behalf of your loved ones. All pujas are done in the presence of the awakened deity of the Divine Mother, Ma Dakshineshwari Kali.
Puja is an auspicious way to celebrate important events in your life, such as birthdays, to help counteract inauspicious doshas in your astrological chart, or simply to invoke the blessings of God in your and your family’s lives through devoted worship
If you are not present during the special puja, we will send you a letter confirming the performance of the puja, prashadi flowers & sweets offered on your behalf, and sacred ash from the fire ceremony.
The minimum donation for a special puja performed at Kali Mandir is $108. This offering covers the cost of all necessary items such as flowers, sweets, wood, ghee (clarified butter), etc., as well as a donation for the continued work of Kali Mandir and pujari dakshina (token gift to priest).
Special pujas performed in your homePerforming a puja in the home brings the blessings of the Divine to the household. The sacred mantras and rites of traditional worship remove negative energies and fill the home with a tangible presence of Swami jiauspiciousness. Having a puja performed in your home is an ideal way of blessing a new home or commemorating a special event in your life.
Home pujas also include special rituals designed to bless the family and home. The minimum requested donation for a home puja is $151.00. We request that you provide the wood, ghee, flowers and food offerings.
How to gain the most benefit from a special pujaThe more you are personally involved and connected to the worship, the greater the effect in your life. If you are present during the puja, you can participate in the chanting of the mantras and in offering into the sacred fire. You can also prepare some traditional offering such as halava (farina pudding) or paisha (sweet rice). Some devotees also fast, pray or chant extra japa (mantra meditation) on the day of the puja. Many also decide to sponsor the cost of Ma Dakshineswari’s daily sweet and flower offerings on the day of the special worship (approximately $20.00).
How to request a special pujaTo request a special puja either at the temple or in your home, simply call Kali Mandir at (949) 494-1906, or e-mail Swami Bhajanananda at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Let us know the occasion, your ishta-devata (chosen diety), kula-devata (family diety), and your gotra (name of the sage from which your family descends), if known. After requesting a puja, we will choose an auspicious day and time according to the Hindu astrological almanac. If you have a specific day you wish the puja performed, we will try to accommodate your request, if the temple schedule permits.
Your tax-deductible donation can be made by cash, check or credit card.
Kali Worship Worldwide:
In the last 18 years of Kali Mandir’s existence, we have come across so many sincere worshipers of our Divine Mother Kali who are scattered around the world. This international page is dedicated to the lovers of Ma Kali worldwide. We’ll post photos and copy as it becomes available. It will be beneficial and inspiring to all of us if devotees living in different parts of the world become aware of each other. Perhaps we can all be connected through monthly amavasya (New Moon) Kali worship.
There are many ways of worshiping the Divine Mother Kali. Here, at Kali Mandir, we worship the Divine Mother following Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa’s teachings. We worship Ma Kali in a mother/child relationship and, practicing ahimsa, we do no harm to animals. We are strict vegetarians.
It is not hard to start Kali worship as a group effort. Kali Mandir started very small in a one-bedroom apartment. Ma came and, slowly, devotees gathered. In the beginning, it was just a few friends who gathered once a month for amavasya Kali puja. We performed a very simple puja, mainly ringing the bell as we offered light, flowers, water, incense and vegetarian food to Ma.
You are welcome to send photos and copy to email@example.com.
Om Tat Sat
(My humble salutations to the great devotees , wikisources and Pilgrimage tourist guide for the collection )