Now, the number of Sakta Peethas (seats of the mother-goddess) are 51. But ancient Tantra and Sakta tradition mentioned four important Peethas. These are known as Adi Peethas. What are these Peethas?
The following verse mentions about Pithas as follows:
linga-traya-visheshagyah shadAdhAra-vibhedakah |
pitha-sthAnAni chagatya maha-padmavanam vrajet ||
The aspirant, who have the knowledge of the "three Lingas" raises the Kulakundalini, by piercing the Shat Chkras (six centers), travels through the Pithas and finally reaches the Maha Padma Vana (the great forest of lotus - which is referring to the Sashrara Chakra)
KulArnava Tantram 5.106
On this, there is a commentary on the "three Lingas", Pithas and others.
For Pithas the commentary is as follows:
Pithas exist inside our bodies as they exist in the external world. Tantras mention about 51 of them. The Devi Bhagavatam mentions about 108 Pithas but ancient Tantras mention about only 4 such Pithas. According Yoga-sAra they are KAmarupa (withing our body it's at MulAdhAra), Purnagiri or Purnashaila (anAhata Chakra), JAlandhara (Vishuddha) and UdyAkhya or UddiyAn (AjnA).
In Shaktism, the Pithas are considered to be existing within the body too. That is why it's common in Shakti worship (like Sri Vidya and others) for an aspirant to perform something called Pitha Nyasa before the worship.
As an additional reference I'm using this site:
Hevajra Tantra – Four Pitha’s are narrated – 1-Jalandhara ,2-Odiyana ,3-Purnagiri ,4-Kamarupa
Kalika Purana – Six Pitha’s are narrated – 1- Devikuta ,2- Uddiyana ,3- Kamagiri ,4- Jalandhara ,5- Purnagiri ,6- Kamarupa
Rudrayamala – Ten Pitha’s are narrated -1- Kamarupa , 2-Jalandhara ,3- Purnagiri ,4-Oddiyana ,5-Varanasi ,6- Jvalanti 7-Mayavati ,8-Madhupuri ,9-Ayodhya ,10-Kanchi
Kularnava Tantra – Eighteen Pitha’s are narrated -1- Uddiyana ,2-Devidaikotha ,3-Hingula ,4-Kotimudra ,5-Jalandhara ,6- Varanasi ,7- Antarvedi ,8-Prayaga ,9-Mithila 10-Magadha ,11-Mekhala ,12-Anga ,13- Vanga ,14- Kalinga 15-Simhala ,16-Slrirajya ,17-Radha ,18- Gauda
Jnanarnava Tantra –Eight Pitha’s are narrated – 1-Kamarupa 2- Malaya ,3- Kaulagiri ,4- Kulantaka ,5- Cauhara ,6- Jalandhara ,7- Uddiyana ,8- Devakuta
Kubjika Tantra –Forty two Pitha’s are narrated -1- Mayavati ,2-Madhupuri ,3-Kasi ,4- Goraksakarini ,5-Hingula ,6-Jalandhara ,7-Jvalamukhi ,8-Nagarasambhava ,9-Ramagiri 10- Godavari ,11-Nepala ,12-Karnasutra ,13-Mahakarna ,14-Ayodhya ,15- Kurukhetra ,16-Simhanada ,17-Manipura ,18-Hrsikesa ,19-Prayaga ,20-Badari ,21-Amika ,22-Vardhamana 23-Triveni ,24-Ganga-sagar-sangam ,25-Narikela ,26-Viraja 27-Uddiyana ,28-Kamala ,29-Vimala ,30-Mahismati ,31-Varahi ,32-Tripura ,33- Vagamati ,34-Nilavahini ,35- Govardhana ,36-Vindhyagiri ,37-Kamarupa ,38-Ghantakarna 39-Hayagriva ,40-Madhava ,41- Ksiragrama ,42-Vaidyanatha
Jnanarnava and the Tantrasara –Fifty Pitha’s are narrated -1- Kamarupa ,2- Varanasi ,3-Nepala ,4-Paundravardhana ,5-Kasmir ,6- Kanyakubja ,7-Purasthita ,8-Carasthita ,9-Purnasaila ,10- Arbuda ,11- Amratakesvara ,12-Ekamra ,13- Trisrotah ,14-Kamakotta ,15-Kailasa ,16-Bhrgu ,17-Kedara 18-Candrapura ,19-Sripitha ,20-Onkara ,21-Jalandhara ,22- Malava ,23-Kulanta ,24- Devikotta ,25- Gokarna ,26-Marutesvara ,27- Attahasa ,28-Viraja ,29-Rajagrha ,30-Kovagiri ,31- Elapura ,32-Kalesvara ,33-Jayantika ,34-Ujjayini 35-Ksirika ,36-Hastinapura ,37- Uddisa ,38-Prayaga ,39-Vindhya ,40-Mayapura ,41-Jalesvara ,42- Malaya ,43-Srisaila 44-Merugiri ,45- Mahendra ,46- Vamana ,47-Hiranyapura 48-Mahalaksmi ,49-Uddiyana ,50-Chayachatrapua
Where are purnagiri and udayakhya? Mar 14, 2021 at 10:53
1Purnagiri is in Uttarakhand and Uddiyan is in Orissa @Archit– RickrossMar 14, 2021 at 10:55
Early Buddhist tantra (Hevajra Tantra, 693 A.D) first mentioned the four Peethas.
However, in the Hindu tradition, the same four Peethas were first mentioned in Kalika Puran (Ch. 64, 43-45; Ch. 18, 42-44 and 49-51). Roughly these four Peethas are placed in four corners of India. These are as follows -
- North - Jalandhara. It is the seat of the Goddess Chandi.
- West - Uddiyana in the Swat Valley, Pakistan. This is the seat of Goddess Katyanai. There was a suggestion that Uddiyana is actually located in Odisa. But this view is rejected by scholars.
- South - Purnagiri. The seat of Goddess Purnesvari.
- East - Kamarupa, Assam. The deity is Kamesvari.
Abul Fazal, who was in Akbar's court (1556-1605 A.D), also mentioned about four Peethas in his book Ain-i-Akbari. His list includes the following names.
- Sarada Peeth in Kashmir (Now in Pakistan occupied Kashmir)
- Tulja Bhavani in the Bijapur region. The shrine of Bhavani is located in Tuljapur, near Osmanabad, Maharastra. This could be the same as Purnagiri mentioned in other texts. Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj was a devotee of Goddess Bhavani. As Tuljapur was far away, he established another Bhavani temple in his Pratapgarh fort.
- Kamakhya in Kamrupa, Assam. This is the most famous Sakta Peetha.
- Jwalamukhi. Though he mentioned Jalandhari, actually he referred to Jwalamukhi, which is very clear from the vivid description of the place. This place is in Himachal Pradesh.
Thus we see that in the late middle age, Sarada Peetha replaced Uddiyana.
References - The Sakta Pithas by Dr. D. C. Sirkar