Pashupatinath TempleHindu Temples | April 14, 2010
Pashupatinath or Pashupati Temple (‘Temple of Living Beings) is a famous Hindu pilgrimage located on the banks of Bagmati River in Deopatan village, located just 3 km northwest of Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal. The temple is dedicated to Pashupati (Lord of Animals) or Lord Shiva. Thousands of Hindu devotees pay visit to Pashupati Temple every year from various parts of the world. Non-Hindus are, however, barred from entering the temple. Pashupati Temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
About the temple:
Pashupatinath Temple is located in an open courtyard at the centre of Deopatan. The temple is a square, two-tiered pagoda temple built on a single-tier platform and reaches 23.6 meters above the ground. The temple structure is adorned with richly ornamented gilt and silver-plated doors. The temple has a sanctum that contains a metre high linga with four faces representing Pashupati, Vishnu, Surya, Devi and Ganesh. The priests of the temple are called Bhattas while the chief priest is called Mool Bhatt or Raval. The priest of the temple are from southern India, a tradition said to be started by Sage Sankaracharya .
Lord Pashupati was worshipped by the earlier rulers of Kathmandu Valley. Although the precise dates are not known, it is believed that the temple was built by Pashupreksha of the Somadeva Dynasty in the 3rd century BC. Pashupata sect is believed to be related with the foundation of the temple. The original temple at Pashupati was destroyed several times before it was given its present form by Bhupalendra Malla in late 17th century. Various other temples were built on the model of Pashupatinath, like those in Bhaktapur, Lalitpur and Benaras in India. Queen Gangadevi during the reign of Shivasimha Malla had renovated the architecture of the temple.
Architectural beauty and attractions:
- Chadeshwar, an inscribed Lichchavi linga dating back to the 7th century, in the south of the temple
- The western door features a ornamented statue of a Nandi, the holy bull
- Dharmasila, a sacred stone where oaths are taken
- Small pagoda temple of Vasukid of snakes, the g in the northeast corner of the temple courtyard.
- Sacred bathing ghats on Bagmati River like Arua Ghat, Bhasmeshvar Ghat, Gauri Ghat and others
- Pandra Shivalaya (15 shrines), which were built to enshrine lingas
- The two-level roofs of the temple are decorated with gold while the four main doors are adorned with silver
- Brahma Temple
- Gorakhnath and Vishwarup Temples
- Guhyeshwari (Guhjeshwari) Temple
- Kirateshwar Mahadeva Mandir and Surya Ghat
Festivals at Pashupatinath:
- Teej Akshaya
Time to visit:
May-June is the ideal time to visit
How to Reach:
Regular bus service connects connect Kathmandu with Deopatan. Goshala is the stop for Pashupatinath. Battery-operated tempos also cater to the pilgrims and drop them at Ring Road, west of Pashupatinath.
- Kantipur Temple House (in Kathmandu, located about 3.9 km away)
- Hotel Mohit (in Darjiling, located about 300 km away)
- Hotel Simla Palace (in Lucknow, located about 440 km away)
- Hotel Manglam (in Lucknow, located about 450 km away)
- Hotel Mandakini Palace (in Kanpur, distance about 510 km)