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The monsoons have arrived in Assam, and with the rains begins the auspicious Ambubachi Mela in Guwahati’s Kamakhya Temple. The heart of Tantric traditions in India, the temple attracts sadhus, sadhvis and Tantric practitioners every year during this time.

The festival begins on 22 June this year – a day after the summer solstice – and goes on till 26 June. The festival is a celebration of the Shakti culture, which worships the mother goddess Kamakhya.

During the period of Ambubachi, from the seventh to the tenth day of the Hindu month of Asadha, the doors of the the shrine are closed to all as it is believed that the Goddess Kamakhya goes through the annual cycle of menstruation. On the twelfth day, the doors are opened ceremonially and a big fair is held at the temple premises.

Photo: Anjana Dutta

Photo: Anjana Dutta

Photo: Anjana Dutta

Photo: Anjana Dutta

Photo Credit: Anjana Dutta

Source: In Pics: Celebrating the Shakti Cult at Guwahati’s Ambubachi Mela