A view infront of the 'Sri Muktinath Temple' in Nepal
A view infront of the 'Sri Muktinath Temple' in Nepal

Sri Muktinath temple, named as ‘Thiru Saligram’ is one of the 108 Divya Desam temples, located at Dhawalagiri, Mustang District of Nepal, dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Muktinath temple is also called as Mutki Kshetra, the place of liberation or moksha, and it is one of the most ancient temples of Lord Vishnu. The canal downstream from Muktinath temple is the origin of all Silas and Saligrams, which are essential to initiate a temple of Lord Vishnu anywhere. And thus this temple is also called as ‘Thiru Saligram’ and considered sacred for Hindus and Buddhists.

Muktinath temple contains 108 water springs, which is considered as a holy number and bear more importance in Indian philosophy, which denotes all theerthams (temple tank) from all the 108 Divya Desams, which also includes Srirangam temple, Tirumala temple and Vaikunta temple, where the pilgrims take holy bath even in the freezing temperature. The Shrine of Lord Muktinath is believed to be one of the eight most holy shrines for Vaishnavas. These eight holy shrines are together known as Svayam Vyakta Ksetras. The list of eight most holy shrines for Vaishnavas are:

  1. Muktinath Temple
  2. Srirangam Temple
  3. Srimushnam Temple
  4. Tirupati Temple
  5. Naimisharanya Temple
  6. Thothadri Temple
  7. Pushkar Temple
  8. Badrinath Temple

The Prakaram (outer courtyard) contains 108 bull faces by which water is poured. And there is an old Benedictine present at this temple sanctum who is worshipped by the Buddhists. The founder of Tibetan Buddhism Guru Rinpoche also called as Padmasambhava believed to have meditated at this temple. Muktinath temple has been respected by many saints of Hindu tradition and the temple has been revered in scripts like Vishnu Purana with the Gandaki Mahathmya. The month of March and July will be the suitable time to visit Muktinath temple because of the poor weather conditions.

Specialty

Muktinath temple is also considered as one of the 52 Shakti Peetha temples. The Shakti Peetha is a place of worship to Goddess Shakti also called Goddess Sati, the main deity. Goddess Sati is the embodiment of Goddess Parvati (Goddess of harmony) and Goddess Durga (Goddess of strength) and Goddess MahaKali (Goddess of destruction of evil). It is said that the four major Shakti Peethas are created from the limbs of Goddess Sati‘s corpse. The four major Adi Shakti Peethas are:

  1. Bimala Temple
  2. Tara Tarini Temple
  3. Kamakhya Temple
  4. Dakhina Kalika Temple

Apart from the following four Shakti Peethas, there are 52 other famous Peethas found from the religious books. The body part or ornament of Goddess Shakti that fell to the earth, is the place where the Adi Shakti temples are built. The mythology says that Lord Shiva had a dance of destruction (Rudra Tandava) carrying half burnt body of goddess Sati after Goddess Sati’s self-immolation. To stop the dance of destruction performed by Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu threw His Chakra (Sudharshan Chakra) on Goddess Sati’s body which dismembered Her body into 52 parts. The forehead of Goddess Shakti is believed to have fallen here, where Mukinath temple is built.

Festivals

  • Rishitarpani – August
  • Ram Navami – March or April
  • Vijaydasami – September or October
By Air

One can fly from Kathmandu to Pokhara and then from Pokhara to Jomsom Airport.


By Trekking

From Jomsom Airport, one can either trek all the way or take a jeep to reach the temple.


By Helicopter

Tourists can also hire a helicopter all the way to Muktinath temple which takes around forty five minutes to reach. The helicopter can be hired only when the weather condition permits.

  • Changu Narayan Temple
  • Guheswari Temple
  • Ram Janaki Temple
  • Pasupathinath Temple
  • Bindabasini Temple
  • Baglung kalika Temple
  • Dakshinkali Temple

LEAVE A REPLY