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Pashupatinath Temple

About Pashupatinath Temple:

Pashupatinath Temple is a famous and sacred Hindu temple. Another chronicle states that Pashupatinath Temple was in the form of Linga shaped Devalaya before Supuspa Deva constructed a five-storey temple of Pashupatinath in this place. As the time passed, the need for repairing and renovating this temple arose. It is learnt that this temple was reconstructed by a medieval King named Shivadeva (1099-1126 AD). It was renovated by Ananta Malla adding a roof to it. 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'.

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, Pashupatinath is one of the four most important religious sites in Asia for devotees of Lord Shiva. Built in the 5th century and  later renovated by Malla kings, the site itself is said to have existed from the beginning of the millennium when a Shiva lingam was discovered here.

The largest temple complex in Nepal, it stretches on both sides of the Bagmati River which is considered holy by Hindus.  The main pagoda style temple has a gilded roof, four sides covered in silver, and exquisite wood carvings. Temples dedicated to several other Hindu god and Buddhist deities surround the the temple of Pashupatinath.

History of Pashupatinath Temple:

The temple was created in the 5th century by Licchavi King Prachanda Dev after the previous building was consumed by termites. Over time, many more temples have been erected around this two -storied temple. These include the Vaishnava temple complex with a Rama temple from the 14th century and the Guhyeshwari Temple mentioned in an 11th-century manuscript.

Pashupatinath Temple is the oldest Hindu temple in Kathmandu. It is not known for certain when Pashupatinath Temple was built. But according to Nepal Mahatmaya and Himvatkhanda, the deity here gained great fame there as Pashupati, the Lord of all Pashus, which are living as well as non-living beings. Pashupatinath Temple's existence dates back to 400 B.C. The richly ornamented pagoda houses the sacred linga or holy symbol of Lord Shiva.

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

Best Time to Visit:

Late September to December remains the best time to visit Kathmandu because of the views of pristine glaciers and local festivals. During these months, the place remains dry and suitable for exploration and trekking.

Features:

Visit Pashupatinath for an unmatched mix of religious, cultural and spiritual experiences. Located 3 km northwest of Kathmandu on the banks of the Bagmati River, the temple area also includes Deupatan, Jaya Bageshori, Gaurighat (Holy Bath), Kutumbahal, Gaushala, Pingalasthan and Sleshmantak forest. There are around 492 temples, 15 Shivalayas (shrines of Lord Shiva) and 12 Jyotirlinga (phallic shrines) to explore.

Pashupatinath Temple is one of the seven UNESCO Cultural Heritage Sites of the Kathmandu Valley.  It is also a cremation site where the last rites of Hindus are performed. The rituals of cremation is not for the faint hearted; still visitors are seen watching curiously from across the river from the hillside. Visit Pashupatinath Temple for an out-of-this-world experience.

Timing for Aarti:

All the four doors are also opened during the Abhisheka time i.e. 9-11am.

Timing for Darshan at Pashupatinath Temple:

4 am to 7 pm

Location:

Located on the banks of the Bagmati River, approximately 5 km north-east of Kathmandu in the eastern part of Kathmandu Valley, the capital of Nepal.

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