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The Pashupatinath Temple is a Hindu temple in Kathmandu, Nepal, located on the banks of the Bagmati River. It is devoted to Shiva’s avatar Pashupatinath. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is one of Nepal’s most well-known temples. Only Hindus are permitted to enter the shrine.
King Licchavi built Pashupatinath Temple in the 5th century AD. A two-story pagoda with a golden roof and silver doors serves as the primary temple. There are more temples dedicated to various Hindu deities, as well as a cremation ground, within the temple complex.
The Pashupatinath Temple is one of Nepal’s and the world’s most revered Hindu shrines. Every year, hundreds of pilgrims flock to the place.
History of Pashupatinath Temple
While there are several beliefs regarding how the temple came to be, the most frequently accepted one is that it was built by a deity. According to folklore, Lord Shiva and Parvati rested by the Bagmati River while they travelled through the Kathmandu Valley. In front at the natural beauty of the valley and its surrounding woodlands, they were overcome with surprise and amazed. Afterwards, the two decided to transform into deer and stroll through the woodland, taking in all of its splendour. Several locations have been pinpointed as places where the two deer crossed paths. The other gods began searching for Lord Shiva when he was in the form of a deer. The Gods searched everywhere for him before finding him in the Kathmandu forests, where they asked him to return to his home. The Gods insisted on returning with Lord Shiva, but he refused. He got into a fight with them and ended up losing one of his antlers.
Lord Shiva finally relented and decided to return, but only after announcing that he would now be known as Pashupatinath, Lord of All Animals, in recognition of his long stay in the forest as a deer. Because of the lingam’s transformation of an antler that fell in the forest, it was believed that anyone who appeared in front of it would not be reborn as an animal. Over time, the lingam was buried beneath the earth’s surface and forgotten.
According to legend, a wish-fulfilling cow named Kamadhenu took refuge in a cave on the Chandravan mountain after nearly 10,000 years. Every day, Kamadhenu would descend to the spot where the lingam formerly stood and pour milk there. People who noticed Kamadhenu’s daily milking began to question why she did it. Because of this, they dug up the earth in that place and discovered a gorgeous, dazzling lingam in the ground. Everyone who had a good look at it vanished and was supposed to be free of all their past deeds and reincarnations. In the course of time, the devotees built a huge temple around the lingam that became known as the Pashupatinath Temple. Devotees have long believed that their prayers will be answered and that they will be closer to God if they attend the temple.