Kedarnath Temple is situated in kedarnath, state of Uttarakhand. It is located near the river called Mandhakini. The temple stands at a height of about 11,755 feet, on the shores of Mandakini River.
Kedarnath temple is built by Pancha Pandavas (the five acknowledged sons of Pandu).
The history reveals that during the Kurukshetra war, a war described in the Indian epic Mahabharata as a conflict that arose from a dynastic succession struggle between two groups of cousins Kuru, the Kauravas and Pandavas, for the throne of Hastinapura kingdom, the Pandavas killed their own cousins and relatives. To absolve themselves from the sin of killing their cousins, they made penance towards Lord Shiva and chuffed the Lord with their meditation and penance at the place of Kedarnath.
But Lord Shiva was not happy with this event and He turned Hmself into a bull and tried to flee away from the Pandavas. On seeing the bull which looked peculiar, the Pandavas started following the bull. The bull got into a hollow, and finally the different body parts of the bull started falling in different places around. And from the hind of the bull, which fell at a particular place around, appeared a Jyotirlinga (Lingam) where Lord Shiva appeared out from the radiant sign.
The pandavas got rid of from their sins after the special Darshan (blessing) of Lord Shiva in a sacred Jyotirlinga form. And it was said that from then, Lord Shiva remained at the place where He got emerged in the form of a triangular shaped Jyotirlinga.
Fortes of Kedarnath temple
The triangular shaped Lingam, is worshiped as Lord Kedarnath, who is known as Sadashiva manifestation of Lord Shiva. And there are other idols placed in the temple such as Lord Krishna, Nandi, Lord Veerabhadra (the guard of Shiva).
Kedarnath temple is revered as one of the sacred Jyotirlinga temples, dedicated to Lord Shiva. According to the mythology, Lord Shiva first manifested Himself as a Jyotirlinga. (Lingam – The Radiant Sign of The Almighty Lord Shiva).
The 12 Jyotirlinga Temples dedicated to Lord Shiva are:
- Somnath Temple
- Mallikarjun Temple
- Mahakaleshwara Temple
- Omkareshwar Temple
- Vaidyanath Temple
- Bhimashankar Temple
- Rameshwaram Temple
- Nageshwar Temple
- Vishwanath Temple
- Trimbakeshwar Temple
- Kedarnath Temple
- Grishneshwar Temple
The temple has the statues of Pancha Pandavas inside the temple premises. The the temple is fully covered with the signs and symbols of the Pancha Pandavas. There is a belief around the devotees that by worshiping Lord Kedarnath (Lord Shiva) at this temple, will help them attain piety.
Beside the Kedarnath Temple, there is a Samadhi (shrine) of Adi Sankaracharya, who was believed to revived the Kedarnath temple later.
The temple will be opened only between the months of April to November due to the extreme weather conditions. The deities of Kedarnath temple are brought to the place called Ukhimath for worship during winter.
Poojas in the Morning
- Baal bhog pooja
- Laghurudraksha abhishek pooja
- Shodshopchar pooja
- Ashtopchar pooja
- Chopchar pooja
- Sadharan Shiva pooja
- Sampoorna din ki pooja
- Sampoorna arti
- Pandva Pooja
- Ganesha pooja
- Bahirava pooja
- Parvati pooja
Poojas in the Evening
- Shiv ashtottar Patha pooja
- Shiv sahastranam pooja
- Shivnamawali pooja
- Shiv mahiman istotra pooja
- Apradha samapan istotra pooja
- Shiv tandava istotra pooja
- Ekanta seva pooja
- Vinayak Chathurthi – September or October
- Deepawali – September or October
- Shravani Annakoot Mela – August
The nearest airport is the Jolly Grant Airport near Dehradun, is about 239 kilo meter and it also closer to Rishikesh (16 kilo meters).
The nearest railway stations to kedarnath are at Rishikesh (215 kms), Haridwar (241 kms), Dehradun (257 kms), Kotdwar (246 kms).
Haridwar railway station is connected with New Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Amritsar and Howrah.
Kedarnath is well connected through road via major cities like Chandigarh (387 kms), Delhi (458 kms), Nagpur (1421 kms), Bangalore (2484 kms), Rishikesh (189 kms).