A famous temple of lord Pashupatinath in Nepal lies at the west bank of holy river, Bagmati. It is about 5 km northeast of Kathmandu. According to Gopal Vamshavali, the oldest ever chronicle in Nepal, states that the temple was built by Supuspadev, a Licchhavi king who ruled around 464 to 505 AD. However, another ancient chronicle states that this temple was in Linga shaped Devalaya (small temple) before Supuspadev replaced it five stored temple. The temple witnessed many rounds of renovation over the years and finally it took the present shape during the reign of shivasimha Malla who ruled 1578 to 1620 AD. Again, it was renovated twice: in 1674 and in 1697 AD.
It has four silver/gold gilt doors on all four sides and all the available spaces have carving and paintings. The struts also depict deities in various postures. Silver gilt doors are the time of Rana period 19/20th century. Front gate was made during the reign of King Mahendra. Three types of puja are performed; Daily, Festival and Special. There are 3200 Statue of various deities. It is also said that the Gold gilt roof is started to made after the Bhaskar Verma, a Licchhavi king gave a shower with gold to the temple. For other information read History of Nepal.
Around the temple of Pashupatinath
There are many other smaller temples dedicated to various deities: Vasuki, Chandeshwori and Kritimukha Bhairav (7th Century), the temple of Bramha (9th century), Kotilingeswor, the temple of Unmatta Bhairav, Muktimandap, Radha Krishna and Parthiveswor (15th to 17th century AD).
According to Hindu scriptures, Pashupatinath is one of the most important pilgrimage address for Hindu. The literal meaning of the word “Pashupatinath” is the lord of all the animals of the universe (supposed to have control over all living beings Human and non-human). Hindu pilgrims from different parts of the world visit this place in all seasons. On the special occasions like big Maha Shivaratri festival which falls on the fourteenth day of the waning moon in Late February early march attracts hundreds of thousands of devotees from within Nepal and from India.
The significance of the place is recognized at the international level too. The Pashupatinath area have a matchless inventory of temples, history, legacy and faith which is included in the list of the world cultural heritages site in 1979 AD (UNESCO). The beautiful pagoda temple is in square and stands firm in the middle of a spacious courtyard. If you are interested more about other world cultural heritage site in Nepal designated by UNESCO read: Kathmandu Nepal Points of Interest.
About Shiva Linga in Pashupatinath Nepal
In the Hindu religion, Shiva is one sect of religion. And Linga is connected with the Shiva. There are two types of linga: one is plane and another is 4 headed linga on four sides. Upper part indicates linga (Penis) and down part indicate Yoni (Vegina). The power of creation. There are three parts; Down part consider that there is Bramha (A god of Creater), Middle Part have Bishnu (A protector) and Upper part have Rudra (A god of medicine or incarnation of Lord Shiva).
Four side of each headed linga have different priest at the main sanctum of the temple. The priest should have last 7 generation of vegetarian. 108 Bhandari are the assistant of Bhatta priest. Bhatta are the main priest of the temple. Who came from south India. Another, the four faces are described as the symbol of four dhaamas (the four holiest places of the Hindu Pilgrimage; Badrinath, Dwarka, Puri and Rameswaram) and the four Vedas (sacred books of Hindus) as well.
Vedas and Puranas (the two most sacred books of the Hindus) elaborately describe the Five-faces Lingas that enshrine the sanctum of the temple. Tatpurusha (East), Sadyojata (West), Vamadeva (North), Aghora (South), and Ishana (Up). Virateshwor Shiva Linga is one biggest linga of Nepal which dated back to 7/8th century. More than 400 small and large Shiva linga can be found at Pashupati area. Side of Buddha Statue is also dated back to 7/8th century.
Around the Pashupatinath, Licchhavi period 32 inscription, Malla period 50 and shah period 55 Inscriptions has published. 103 Inscription has not published yet. 3200 Statue of various deities has counted up to till. Another, Pashupatinath temple area have 27 temple and statue of Licchhavi period and 37 of Malla period temple and statue. At last, those who come and visit the Pashupatinath area, all the curse will remove even if he/she has done blunder sin in his/her life.
Funeral rite in Pashupatinath Nepal
According to Hindu, Funeral rite conducted for the afterlife journey of the deceased for salvation. The rites are often done on the banks of the rivers. The process is takes the dead body to the riverside and kept on the funeral pyre for cremation. Son/s of the deceased, with their head shaved, light the pyre. Then after, the son/s sit for mourning for 13 Days wearing only white robes and remain secluded from others, eat frugally one meal of rice., often with ghee (butter) and fruits a day.
During the period they are not supposed to touch others. A religious scripture, Garuda Puran is recited to console the mourners. During the period, dead soul is remembered with religious rituals. On the 13th day, an elaborate ritual is held for the heavenly abode of the dead soul. The priest is offered various goods with the belief that these will be received by the dead soul. Then after, every month for one year, similar ritual, but on smaller scale is observed.
For the whole year, the mourners wear the white clothes. However, nowadays many people discard white clothes after 13 days for their convenience. After a year, a religious ritual called “Sraddha” is performed, after which the mourners discard the white dress. Shraddha is performed every year in the sacred memory of the dead.