It is said that Maa Shakti had separted herself from Lord Shiva and emerged from the ‘yajna’ performed by Lord Brahma for creation of this universe. His son Daksha performed several yajnas and Devi Sati was born to him as his daughter and the incarnation of Maa Shakti.
Subsequently after Sati performed severe penance, she was married to Lord Shiva . However, Daksha was not happy.
To humiliate Lord Shiva, he performed a grand sacrifice(yajna) called Vrihspti near Munimandala (present Muramalla in Andhra Pradesh) where he invited all gods and goddesses barring Shiva and Sati. Although initially reluctant Shiva finally let Sati attend the yajna on her repeated insistance. Daksha ignored the presence of Sati and even insulted Lord Shiva in front of other deities. Enraged and unbable to tolerate her husband’s insult Sati sacrificed herself in the ‘yajnakunda’. In utter anguish and violent rage Lord Shiva started the Tandav(the celestial dance of destruction), carrying Devi Sati’s corpse on his shoulders. The entire world was on the brink of destruction.
To stop this devastating penance Lord Vishnu dissected Sati’s corpse into several pieces with his Sudarshan Chakra. The various parts of Sati’s body fell at several places all through the Indian subcontinent and temples were erected at each spots to commemorate different manifestations of Lord Shiva and Parvati. They came to be known as a Shakti Peeths and are amongst the most sacred sites for pilgrimage.
There are 51 Shakti Peeth sites linked to the 51 alphabets in Sanskrit. The majority of these sites are in West Bengal.
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