Hindu Holy Place - Kedarnath
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India is the land with multiple religions and is a country of God fearing people.People start for the pilgrimage from one place to another and perform pooja etc.to wash away all their sins.There are many holy places in India and the main such places are shown here in the following table.
This is one of the twelve "Jyotirlingas" of Lord Shiva,on the head of river Mandakini,amidst the mountains of the Kedarnath range,located at an elevation of 11,735 feet above sea level.It is situated in the Uttar Kashi district of the northern state of Uttaranchal,near to the Indo-Chinese border.
It is near to Rishikesh (235 km) and Dehradun (250 km).The linga at Kedarnath is pyramidal, unlike its usual form.A statue of Nandi,the celestial bull stands at the entrance of the temple.
The shrine of Kedarnath is one of the holiest pilgrimages.Kedarnath can be reached through a 14 km. long trek from Gaurikund.The shrine is closed in winter season, since it is submerged in snow.The ideal time to visit is between May to October.
The referrance of the temple is found in the great epic - Mahabharat which mentions that,after the great war of Mahabharat,the Pandavas sought the blessings of Lord Shiva to atone their sins but Shiva eluded them and took refuge at Kedarnath in the form of a bull.
Further,he dived into the ground,leaving behind his hump on the surface.This conical part is worshipped as the idol in the temple.The other sacred bodies of Lord Shiva are worshipped at four other places.
The hair at Kalpeshwar,the mouth at Rudranath,the arms at Tungnath,the navel at Madmaheshwar and all these places together are named as Panch Kedar.
Attractions In Kedarnath
The existing temple,about1000 years old.was built in 8th century A.D. by Adi Guru Shankaracharya,which is adjacent to an ancient temple built by Pandavas.There are figures of deities and scenes from mythology on the walls of the temple.
The linga is conical in shape.The shrine consists of the main idol, a statue of Nandi,the celestial bull,place for worship and a pandol for gatherings of piligrims.
Adi Guru Shankaracharya,after establishing the four dhams in India,attained his samadhi at an early age of 32 years,behind the Kedarnath temple.