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Monday, 03 October 2016 19:52

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Kedarnath is not only one of the twelve Jyothirlingas of Lord Shiva but it is one of the Panch Kedars also. It is set amidst the stunning mountainscape of the Garhwal Himalayas at the head of the Mandakini..

Kedarnath is not only one of the twelve Jyothirlingas of Lord Shiva but it is one of the Panch Kedars also. It is set amidst the stunning mountainscape of the Garhwal Himalayas at the head of the Mandakini River. Among the twelve Jyotirlingas, Kedarnath is the Northern most one.


The temple at Kedarnath opens only when the sun enters the zodiac sign of Aries and it is closed when the sun enters Scorpio. Thus, this JyotirLinga can be visited only during six months in a year. From the month of Vaisakha to Ashwin (Ashwiyaja) is the time when pilgrims can make the journey to this. The rest of the year it is too cold and the Himalayas are covered in snow. Therefore, the Kedarnath temple remains closed for pilgrims. The priests then go to Ukhimath, where the worship of Kedareshwara is continued during the winter season. According to legend, Lord Shiva wished to elude the Pandavas, and took refuge in Kedar- nath in the form of a bull. The Pandavas, who came for repentance for killing their brothers, in the great battle of Kurukshetra followed Lord Shiva to the site, he dived into the ground leaving behind a hump on the surface. This conical projection is worshipped as the idol in the shrine. The lingam at Kedarnath, unlike its usual form, is pyramidal.The remaining parts of the body are worshipped at four other sites- the arms (Bahu) at Tungnath, mouth (mukh) at Rudranath, navel (nabhi) at Madmaheshwar and hair (jata) at Kalpeshwar. These five shrines collectively are known as the Panch Kedar.



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