Saturday, June 11, 2011

Kailash Yatra 2011 - 1

OM Namashivaya

One more summer is over and the snow on the Himalayas have started melting and another season of the Kailash yatra has started. The publisher of adiyen's book on Kailash yatra Shri. Ravi Ramanathan has a desire to visit Kailash after publishing the book by the grace of Lord Shiva, his desire got fulfilled this year. He undertook the yatra during the earlier part of this year through Annapoorani travels, Chennai. In the coming posts we will see the photos taken during the yatra and the anectodes associated with it as described by him. When he sought the permission from Lord Kapaleeswara of Mylapore first He asked Ravi to first visit kasi along with his wife which he did in the month of April and undertook the Kailash yatra during May. The tour operator in Chennai was

Annapoorna Yatra Service,
63, Naduththeru,
Tel. 044-32946526/27

Pasupathinath temple , Kathmandu

The itenary of the yatra through Nepal normally starts from capital of Nepal , Kathmandu all the yatri's first reach Kathmandu. Shri Ravi travelled from Chennai by flight to Delhi and then to Kathmandu on 07-05-2011 and stayed in the Hotel and was given briefing about the yatra by

Richa ToursNepal Plaza Bldg,
Second Floor,
Tridevi Marg, Thamel,
PO BOX 1657,
Kathmandu, Nepal
Phone:977-1-4423064, 4420710, 4411953,
, who were the tour operator on the Chinese side for this yatra.

Main entrance of Pasupathinath temple

( You can see the rear side of Nandi the mount of Lord Shiva)

On 08-05-2011 they had a tour of kathmandu in which they visited Pasupathinath temple, Guhyeswari Sakthi peetam and Neelkant Vishnu. They were provided with the kit bag and made last minute shopping in Kathmandu. These photos are that of Pasupatinath temple. Pashupatinath Temple, with its astonishing architectural beauty, stands as a symbol of faith, religion, culture and tradition. Regarded as the most sacred temple of Hindu Lord Shiva in the world, Pashupatinath Temple's existence dates back to 400 A.D. The richly-ornamented pagoda houses the sacred linga symbol for Lord Shiva. The lord is Pasupathi "Lord of animals".

Thousands of pilgrims from all over the world come to pay homage to this temple, that is also known as 'The Temple of Living Beings'. This temple can be called as the Kasi of Nepal and is situated on the banks of Bagmati river in the eastern side of Kathmandu. The priests are from India a tradition started by Adi Sankaracharaya. The Sakthi peetam Guhyeswari is also situated in this temple.

There are many legends describing as to how the temple of Lord Pashupatinath came to existence here. Some of them are narrated below:-

The Cow Legend Legend says that Lord Shiva once took the form of an antelope and sported unkown in the forest on Bagmati river's east bank. The gods later caught up with him, and grabbing him by the horn, forced him to resume his divine form. The broken horn was worshipped as a linga but overtime it was buried and lost. Centuries later an astonished herdsmen found one of his cows showering the earth with milk. Digging deep at the site, he discovered the divine linga of Pashupatinath.

The Linchchhavi Legend According to Gopalraj Vamsavali, the oldest ever chronicle in Nepal, this temple was built by Supus Padeva, a Linchchhavi King, who according to the stone inscription erected by Jayadeva 11 in the courtyard of Pashupatinath in 753 AD, happened to be the ruler 39 generations before Manadeva (464-505 AD).

The Devalaya Legend Another chronicle states that Pashupatinath Temple was in the form of Linga shaped Devalaya before Supus Padeva constructed a five storey temple of Pashupatinath in this place. As the time passed, the need for reparing and renovating this temple arose. It is learnt that this temple was reconsturcted by a mediaeval King named Shivadeva (1099-1126 AD). It was renovated by Ananta Malla adding a roof to it.

Festivals: Pashupati area is regarded as one of the most important places of pilgrimages for the followers of Hinduism. Thousands of devotees from within and outside the country come to pay homage to Pashupatinath every day. And on special occasions like Ekadasi, Sankranti, Mahashivratri, Teej Akshaya, Rakshabandhan, Grahana (eclipse), Poornima (Full moon day) the whole atmosphere turns festive and mirthful as people congregate here in a far greater number.

During the Shivaratri (also spelled Shivratri) festival Pashupatinath temple is lit with ghee lamps throughout the night and the temple remains open all night. Thousands of devotees take ritual baths in the Bagmati river on the day of the festival and observe a fast for the whole day. Hundreds of sadhus (sages) from different parts of Nepal and India come here on the occasion of Maha Shivaratri.

Auspicious Days to Visit In August, during the Teej festival, thousands of women visit the temple to bathe in the holy waters of the Bagmati River. Because this ritual is meant to bring a long and happy marriage, many women dress in red saris, which are traditionally worn for wedding ceremonies. Full moon and New moon days are also considered auspicious to visit the temple.

Shri Ravi Ramanathan

Propreiter Prema Prasuram

Publisher of Kailash Manasarovar Yatra book

Pigeons in the temple complex

There are lot shops in and around the temple

where shopping can be done.

As it is seen there are no restrictions for Indians visiting Kailash through Nepal, but when we travel through India there are many restrictions the first batch starts from India starts on 29th May only and only 16 batches are allowed in a year. But before that many groups would have travelled via Nepal. Ravi told that on the day his yatra started there were some five groups and in totoal there were around 90 yatris. Also the time taken for yatra through this route is only 15 days so many elderly people prefer this route but there are acclaimatization problem and also most of the time the tour operators of Nepal do not allow pligrims to do the full Kora.

Yatra continues

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