Thursday, June 21, 2012

AMARNATH TEMPLE

Amarnath Cave temple in the state of Jammu and Kashmir is dedicated to Lord Shiva and
a pilgrimage to this holy land is conducted every year in the month of 'Shravana' for 45 days
  during July-August.Amarnath Cave is situated at an altitude of 3,888 m (12,756 feet) and 
it is situated 141 km from Srinagar, the capital of Jammu and Kashmir.
Inside the 130 feet holy cave the Shiv Linga which is formed from Snow/ice  can be witnessed during May to August  and it wanes thereafter.The Lingam reaches in good heights and good  form during the 'Shravana Mela' when pilgrims  are visiting this shrine.
Many Hindus believe visiting this Shrine at least once in their  life time is very much auspicious. But in the adverse weather conditions and difficult mountainous paths trekking is
not easy and at the  high ranges breathing easily may be also affected because of scarcity of
air.Yet the Amarnath pilgrimage is happening every year with vigour and vitality by the aspirant devotees in hundreds and thousands.Last year in 2011, a total of 634000 devotees
visited Amarnath Cave temple during the 45 day  Amarnath Mela.
Many devotees  go to the cave through 'Phalgam town' route and another route also is available.Buses and cars reach up to 'Chandanwari' and then the pilgrims have to move on foot,or use pony or can get help from Dandies(Chairs carried by porters).There are limited
helicopter services  available the details which can be made available from reputed travel agencies.
The pilgrimage to Amarnath temple can be performed  only by  Government registration.
Only physically and mentally capable people  select this pilgrimage which is not an easy task.
All pilgrims should carry  good quality woolen clothes.
Pilgrims may take with them dry fruits and energy giving chocolates etc.They should carry
enough money.
Comfortable walking shoes,Walking sticks,torch,raincoat,windcheater and medical kit should be carried with them.Pilgrims should obey the sign boards warnings.
En route to the cave various organisations are offering free food and sheltering to the devotees which are known as 'Pandals'.Tents for hire are also available on the way.
The devotees should travel along with experienced people or travel  along with other groups.
Falling rocks ,avalanches etc  should be taken care of.
The Amarnath temple is believed to be more than 5000 years old.In ancient texts dating
back to centuries before Christ mentions about Amarnath temple and pilgrimage details  are given.
There are references about this temple and pilgrimage in  several old texts including the  one
found which belonged to the  time of 'Akbar the Great'.
According to Hindu mythology Lord Shiva revealed the secret of Life and Immortality to
his consort Goddess Parvati Devi inside the Amarnath Cave.When Parvati Devi inquired
about  immortality to him,  he selected this serene isolated place to reveal  that great secret
of 'Amar Katha'.He left his vehicle 'Nandi'  the bull at Phagalgam,released the moon which was  on his forehead at Chandanwari,Snakes he dropped at Sheshnag,Lord Ganesha was asked to stay at
Mahaguna Parvat,the five elements of life was left at Panjitarni.He created 'Rudra'(Kalagni)
and ordered to afire inside the cave to eliminate any living thing there and entered the cave with Parvati and revealed the secret of eternity and immortality.But however two pigeon
eggs beneath Shiva's deer skin attire  remained there unharmed and two pigeons hatched out of
them which  became immortal.Devotees claim that  many them witnessed the two pigeons inside 








and also  outside the cave in that cold weather and in that high altitude.The cave is the abode of that immortal birds for centuries.

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