During my trip to Allahabad last year, we visited the Sita Samahit Sthal or Sitamarhi, the place where Goddess Sita went underground on meeting Rama again after her stay with sage Valmiki. The place is situated almost midway between Allahabad and Varanasi. According to mythology, abondoned by Rama, Sita went to stay with Rishi Valmiki in his ashram on the banks of river Ganga where she gave birth to her two sons Luv and Kush. Later when Rama planned for the Ashwamedha yagya, Luv and Kush got hold of Rama’s horses and challenged him, not knowing that He was their father. Valmiki intervened and told Rama about his sons and that Sita was in his Ashram and asked Him to take his wife and sons back home. Rama told Valmiki that he was willing to take Sita back if she could prove her purity. Angered by this Sita, known as the daughter of Mother Earth, asked her mother to take her into her lap. Hearing Sita’s pleas, the earth opened up and Sita descended into it. Today, at the same place stands a beautiful temple.
It is a beautiful temple, located in calm and pristine surroundings. Unlike many temples in north India, it is clean and well maintained. The main door has beautiful intricate carvings depicting various episodes from Ramayana.
There is lovely artwork in glass on the ceiling as well.
On the lower level of the temple, there is a marble statue of Mother Sita, ready to descend into the earth.
There is something very divine about this statue that touches you deep within. I found myself wondering, what were Her feelings at this moment. Was She sad that Her Husband didn’t trust her, was She sad at the thought of leaving behind Her sons or was She happy going back to Her mother, Earth. A mortal like me could not say.