Why Tungnath temple in news:
Tungnath, located in Rudraprayag, Uttarakhand, is not only one of the highest Shiva temples in the world but also the highest among the five Panch Kedar temples. Recently, it has been designated as a national monument. The Central Government declared Tungnath a monument of national importance in a notification dated March 27. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), led by Devraj Singh Rautela, confirmed that they had been working towards this recognition for a significant period. During the process, ASI actively sought public opinions and objections regarding the declaration of Tungnath as a national heritage.
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About the Tungnath temple:
- The ancient temple which is located at an altitude of 3,690 metres (12,106 ft) above sea level is connected with the Pandavas. After defeating Kauravas in the Kurukshetra war the Pandavas wanted to atone for their sins of fratricide and Brahmanahatya or killing of Brahims during the battle. For this they handed over the reins of the kingdom and went in search of Lord Shiva to worship him and be free of their sins.
- They reached Varanasi but the God wanting to elude them as he was deeply disturbed by the deceit and death in the war assumed Nandi’s form and hid in Garhwal. The Pandavas, determined to seek His blessings moved to Garhwal and it was Bheem who saw the bull and recognised it to be Lord Shiva. The Pandavas built temples in all these five places to worship Shiva and atone for their sins.
- The temple is believed to have been built by Adi Shankaracharya, the 8th-century Hindu philosopher and reformer. The temple is a simple structure, built in the Nagara style of architecture. The main deity of the temple is a lingam, a representation of Lord Shiva. There are also shrines to Goddess Parvati and other Hindu deities.
- The temple is open to pilgrims from April to November. During the winter months, the temple is closed and the idol of Lord Shiva is moved to a nearby temple.
- Tungnath Temple is a popular pilgrimage site for Hindus. It is also a popular destination for trekkers and hikers. The temple is located in the Garhwal Himalayas, and the trek to the temple is a challenging but rewarding experience.
Here are some additional details about Tungnath Temple:
- The temple is located in the Tungnath mountain range, which is part of the Garhwal Himalayas.
- The trek to the temple takes about 3-4 hours from Chopta, a small village in the Garhwal Himalayas.
- The temple is open to pilgrims from April to November.
- During the winter months, the temple is closed and the idol of Lord Shiva is moved to a nearby temple.
- Tungnath Temple is a popular pilgrimage site for Hindus.
- It is also a popular destination for trekkers and hikers.
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