Majestic Himalayas and revered Kedareshwar!

The temple at Kedarnath enshrining the Jyotirling of Lord Shiva opens only 6 months a year (April-November). The priests then go to Urvimath, where the worship of Kedareshwar is continued during the winter season. The temple sits at the bottom of majestic Himalayas, peaks always covered under snow, it looks beautiful.

Amazing Ancient Architecture Engineering!

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Legend Behind Kedarnath Temple

Legend goes that Nara and Narayana – two incarnations of Vishnu performed severe penance here. Pleased with their devotion, Lord Shiva appeared in front of them and said that they may ask for a boon. Nar and Narayan requested Shiva to take up a permanent abode as a Jyotirling at Kedarnath so that all people who worship Shiva shall be freed from their miseries. According to yet another popular legend, Goddess Parvati worshipped Kedareshwar to unite with Lord Shiva as Ardhanareeswarar. Besides, the Pandavas are believed to have visited this area several times. Arjuna is believed to have come here to pray to Shiva to obtain the coveted Pashupata Astra.

The Jyotirling

The Kedarnath temple does not have a Shivling, it has a huge black rock called the Shiv shilaa. The revered Shiva Linga housed in the temple is in an unusual pyramidal form.

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Kedarnath in 2010 was totally destroyed except the temple in 2013. Even today you can see the remnants of that devastation. Everything around got destroyed except for the Temple. The big boulder below, located just behind the temple, saved the temple during the big flood. Today people pray even this boulder.

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Boulder that saved the temple from rushing water carrying the mountains

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Winter Abode of Kedareshwar

The Shiv shila cannot be moved anywhere. The temple has idol of Kedareshwar made from pancha Dhatu (five metal combination), and during winters, this idol is moved down to the Omkareshwar temple in Urvimath after lighting a ghee lamp, “Nanda Deepa”..

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Kedareshwar at Ukhimath

The Trek

The old trek route started from Gaurikund to Kedarnath via Rambara. After this route was destroyed in 2013, the trek was from Sonprayag to Kedarnath which took two night halts. From 2015 new trekking route was started from Gaurikund to Rambara, then to Limchuli and finally to Kedarnath.

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Bhavishya Kedareshwar

There is a prophecy that in the time to come the present day Kedarnath will be destroyed. There’s going to be a big earthquake which is going to destroy all access routes to Kedarnath. Kedareshwar is supposed to show itself somewhere else, and the process has started. A Swayambhu (self-manifested or that which is created by its own accord) Shiv Shilla is currently in the process of formation at Bhavishya Kedar Temple in Joshimath.

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Srimat Shankaracharya praised Lord Shiva thus:

Mahaadripaarshve cha tate ramantam sampujyamaanam satatam muneendraih;
Suraasurairyaxa mahoragaa dhyaih Kedaarameesham shivamekamide.

Meaning: Oh Lord, who resides in the great heights of Himalayas, oh Lord, thou, who art worshipped forever by saints, Hermits, Demons, Gods, Yakshas and Maha Nag (giant snakes), I bow and offer millions of Pranams.

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