About Kedarnath Temple

Kedarnath Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and it is located in the Garhwal Himalayan range near the Mandakini River in Uttarakhand, India. It is considered as one of the holiest Hindu temples and also one of the 12 Jyotirlingas, which are shrines where Lord Shiva is worshipped in the form of a sacred Shiva Lingas. The temple is situated at an altitude of 3,583 meters (11,755 feet) above sea level amidst breathtakingly beautiful and rugged terrain.

The temple of Kedarnath held the immense religious significance in the Hindu mythology, particularly the devotees of lord Shiva. The Kedarnath temple is one of the temples from Uttarakhand’s Chardham Yatra circuit and according to the legends it was built by the Pandavas and it was revived and re-established by the saint Adi Shankaracharya around 8th Century.

kedarnath temple

Architecture and Design of the Kedarnath Temple

The Kedarnath Temple exhibits traditional Hindu temple architecture, characterized by its stone construction, pyramid-like spire (shikhar), and intricate carvings.

The temple of the Kedarnath is primarily constructed using the very large grey block of stones, it is a common feature of Himalayan architecture as it makes it resilient against the rugged and harsh weather if Himalayas. The surrounding structure of other small shrines and platforms compliments the main temple of Kedarnath and it creates a cohesive spiritual space.

There is also a large statue of the Nandi bull outside the temple which stands as guard of the temple and the Nandi bull is also known as the divine vehicle of lord Shiva.

The design of Kedarnath Temple is stunning, with a tall spire called shikhar representing Lord Shiva. The devotees enter through a hall called mandapa, filled with lovely pillars and carvings telling Hindu stories.

Inside The Kedarnath Temple

Garbhagriha (sanctum sanctorum): Inside, there's the garbhagriha, where Shiv ling is kept in the form of Hump (lord Shiva’s Hump). It's a sacred space accessible through a narrow entrance. The spire stands tall, symbolizing Lord Shiva's presence. As people step inside, they're greeted by a hall adorned with beautiful pillars and carvings illustrating tales from the great Hindu mythology.

Pooja ceremonies at Kedarnath temple

The Head priest at the Kedarnath temple is known as Rawal, and all of the rituals, pooja ceremonies, etc are performed by the pujaris on the directions given by the head priest (Rawal), The Rawal mainly belongs to Veerashaiva community from Karnataka.

Shringar Aarti: This pooja is performed to adorn the deity with beautiful ornaments, flowers, garments, etc. This pooja and aarti is also accompanied by the singing of devotional songs and the waving of incense sticks to offer reverence to Lord Shiva.

Bhog: Offering of food, fruits, and sweets are the part of the Bhog ceremony. These offerings are considered very sacred and later distributed among the devotees as prasad (blessed food).

Aarti: Daily aarti ceremonies are conducted multiple times throughout the day in kedarnath temple, in which the devotees gather to attend aarti and seek blessings from the lord Shiva.

Mahabhishek: Mahabhishek involves the bathing of Shiva ling from various sacred substances such as milk, water, honey, etc. it is performed on special occasions, festivals, to seek the blessing of lord Shiva.

Rudrabhishek: It is a special Pooja dedicated to lord Shiva, and it is considered as the most significant ceremony to honor the lord, Shiva. It involves the bathing of the shiv ling and offering several sacred substances and chanting hymns to seek blessings. It can be booked online before coming at the Kedarnath temple.

Some important info about Kedarnath Temple

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    The Opening and Closing date of Kedarnath temple in 2024

    Opening Date: 11th May 2024 (Tentative)

    Closing Date: Yet to be announced