Pashupatinath Temple (Nepal) – Lord of the Living

When talking about varied culture, Asia takes away the pride to be the best continent. So many different countries, each, again, a maze of different colored cultures. Thousands of places, hundred kinds of culture followed, each with a different taste of society and mankind. There are so many mythologies, out of which arise the Gods. India ranks when it comes to Hindu temples. But all other countries of the continent are also in the competition. We talk about one such country, famous for its high snow-covered mountains, as well as its religious practices. If your guess is Nepal, then you’re right. Nepal is a small country along the north-eastern border of India. There may be many places of discussion in Nepal, and one of them is the Temple of Pashupatinath – the savior of all living beings. Pashupatinath temple is one of the biggest temples of Hindus in the world. It is a temple of Lord Shiva, who is referred to as the savior of all living beings. This temple is located in Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal, on the banks of river Bagmati.

Pashupatinath Temple

The main believers of Lord Pashupatinath are the Hindus. Hence, anyone not born in Nepal or India is considered as a non-Hindu and so is not allowed to enter the premises of the temple, but they can have a look at the temple from the non-temple side of Bagmati River. Among all temples of Lord Shiva all over the world, this temple is regarded as the most sacred. The festival of Shivaratri – the night of Lord Shiva – is celebrated as the most important one. On this day, thousands of devoted people come to aquire the blessing of the Lord. Near the temple, there is a shore known as the Arya Ghat that lies along the banks of Bagmati River. This is the place most widely used for cremation of dead people in Nepal.

Mystery and History

Since this temple belongs to the devotism of Lord Shiva, there are stories of how he landed up at this place, now called Pashupatinath temple. It is said that Lord Shiva, while searching for a new place for his escape from the Himalayas, landed downwards bringing his feet into the Kathmandu Valley. When all other Gods came searching for him he disguised himself as the majestic deer. But when he refused to help them, Lord Vishnu applied his force and broke the thorns of the deer. The used them to create a linga on the river bank. Gradually, the temple, where the linga existed, got buried and was forgotten. But, a cow seemed to secretly sprinkle its milk over the burial and when the place was dug out, people found the linga and re-established the temple, now known as the Pashupatinath Temple. The temple was built in 5th century. The saints and priests were called Bhattas and the main priest, the Mool Bhat.

Architecture

The temple is built with cubic constructions, beautiful carvings on the wooden rafters, two level roofs of copper with gold covering, four main doors covered with silver sheets, and a gold pinnacle called Gajur – a symbol of religious thought. This is referred to as the pagoda style of building. The door in the west has a statue of a large Nandi bull covered in gold. The deity’s idol is of black colored stone, of 6 feet height and circumference.

Besides being famous for its myths, history, architecture, devotionals, and some controversies, this temple also takes the pride of being in the list of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites.

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