Chardham – Historic and Spiritual Importance of 4 Temples
Chardham and its beliefs
The word Temple comes from the Latin word ‘Templum’. It means religious and spiritual rituals. and reserved structures for activities like prayers and sacrifice.
We often worship in temples but barely understand the significant meaning behind it. However, before worshiping in any temple, we should know about its tales, beliefs, and mythology. It is as important as visiting that temple. As a result, the worship becomes more meaningful for any devotee.
In India, the majority of people follow Hinduism and its beliefs. Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism has been born and grown here in India. In Hinduism, Badrinath in the North, Jagannathan Puri in the east, Rameswaram in the south, and Dwarka in the west. They are believed to the holy sites. We are going to discuss all the temples one by one. Also, we will see the importance of these holy sites.
What is Chardham ? and why is it important ?
These four holy sites are located at four cardinal points of India. There are sayings in Hinduism that these sites are lord Vishnu’s favorite places. People believe that Lord Vishnu bath in Rameswaram, a meal at Puri, Meditate in Badrinath, and rest in Dwarka. That’s the reason is these places called ‘Chardham’.
Saint Shankaracharya established these four shrines in the 8th century. Dham means a sacred place.
Jagannath Temple [ Lord of universe ]
Jagannath temple is located in Puri, Odisha. It’s a coastal town that is a pilgrimage site in the Hindu religion. This temple has dedicated to the Lord Jagannath. Lord Jagannath is another form of Lord Vishnu. It is strongly believed that this temple is as old as human civilization.
There are mentions of this temple in ‘Rigveda‘ era. In this temple, three statues of gods and goddesses are worshiped. Every year statues of Balabhadra, Subhadra, and Jagannath are made of Neem and Daru’s leaves. Lord Jagannath is believed as a god of the universe.
These three statues are situated in the sanctum of the temple. Every day there is a meal served, dedicated to the gods and to the people. Total 56 food items are dedicated to Lord Jagannath. This meal is called Mahaprasad.
There are 2 types of Mahaprasad. Firstly, sankudi mahaprasad. Secondly, the Sukhila Mahaprasad. It is cooked in the temple’s kitchen. You will definitely surprise by hearing that about how they make this meal. Above all, it required 250 earthen ovens and 32 rooms. In which 600 cooks work and 400 assistants served the meal to the people.
The Rath Yatra, in other words, the Chariots rally is organized here every year. It’s like a festival at that time. In this Rath Yatra, three gods and goddesses traveled from Jagannath temple to Gundi Cha temple as a tradition. For this yatra, huge Rath [ Chariots ] are made for the gods. These chariots are made up of 18 wheels and 45.6 feet in height.
Rameswaram temple [ The temple of Rama ]
This temple is famous for its rich architecture and spiritual significance. It is located in India’s southern state Tamilnadu. Temple is also called Ramanathan swami temple. This temple is specially dedicated to Lord Shiva. However, It is a legend that when Lord Ram was invading Ravan’s Srilanka. The temple was built before the Ram Setu [Adams Bridge]. This temple is not only one of the Chardham sites but also one of the 12 Jyotirlingas.
If you have an interest in ancient architecture. Then you will find it so much interesting watching the ancient structures. Pillar cravings and corridors are out of the mind. Lord Ram established The shivlinga. After that, various kings constructed so many things from centuries.
Besides the Shivling, there are 22 wells are situated inside the temple called ‘Kund’. Devotees believed that this holy water forgives their sins by bathing here. They gather to worship Lord Ram and Lord Shiva and dive into sacred water.
Mahashivratri is celebrated so big as a festival here.
Dwarika [ The city of Lord Krishna ]
It is situated near the Gomati river. This temple is also called ‘ Jagat temple’ or ‘Trilok Sundar ‘. Lord Krishna’s great grandson Vajranabh built this temple. The flag on the tower of the temple is made of 52 yards of cloth. It can be seen from a 10-kilometer distance.
Because of the Gomati river, temples’ grandeur was enhanced because of 56 ladders. The temple is made up of soft limestones. Sanctum looks so beautiful because of the waste blue, A rectangular hall, and porches. Here, Pilgrims enter from the Swarga Dwar and exit from the Moksha Dwar.
The lower part of the Dwarkadhish temple was built in the 16th century. After that, the clusters which include small towers them were built in the 19th century. The main part of the temple is 100 feet high which is of 5 floors. On the exterior, so many carvings show extraordinary continuity. Multi-layered mythic intensity occurs here. Interior is made up so simple epidemic in contrast. Ornamentation occurs only near the idol of Dwarkadhish.
This temple is called a ‘Mokshapuri’ [ The place of Liberation or salvation ]. Dwarakadhish means Lord of Dwarika which is the name of Lord Krishna. There is an idol of Trivikrama, the fourth form of lord Vishnu situated here. Also, there is a statue of Balarama [ Brother of Krishna ].
The statue of Pradyumna and Aniruddha are on the left side of the main idol. These are the son and grandson of Lord Krishna respectively. There are idols of Lord Vishnu, Lord Shiva, Devaki, Radhika. Also Jambavati, Satyabhama, Lakshmi, For example.
Janmashtami is the most important festival celebrated in Dwarika.
Badrinath Temple [Tallest amongst Chardham ]
Lastly, we are going to see the temple surrounded by beautiful mountains. If you are willing to know about the Chardham. Then it is important to know about Lord Badrinath. This temple is located in Uttarakhand state, India.
According to ancient beliefs, Lord Vishnu meditated here under the Badri tree for thousands of years. Then Lord Badrinath’s temple was established in the pose of meditating. This temple was greatly impactful with statues and images of Lord Vishnu. Temple situated in the middle of Nar Narayan temple.
It has 3 sacred sections called Sabha Mandap, Garbha Graha, and Darshan mandapa. You can visits Surya Kund, Tapt Kund, and Panch Badri, for instance. devotees worship the Lord Vishnu in form of Badri Narayan. One meter long lord Vishnu’s statue is situated in Nar Narayan temple which is called ‘Salegram’.
Mata murti is the most important festival at the Badrinath temple. The legend is that the mother of Lord Badrinath had divided the Ganges into 12 channels for the welfare of people.
The temple is closed because of winters. Therefore, A sacred ‘Akhand Jyoti’ is kept lit all the time inside the temple. Meanwhile, The image of Badrinath Transferred to Narsimha Temple, Jyotirmath after closing the temple. It is 64 km away from Badrinath temple.
After that, In the winter, Moreover, in April-May temples open up for pilgrims.
Most Importantly, Don’t forget to comment on this blog.
In conclusion, You must visit the Chardham one in life.
Also if you like some historical cities then read Lost Cities in India that is vanished now.