Friday, 19 August 2011

Shri Amarnath Ji Yatra 1st August 2011

Jammu in the morning after taking breakfast at Vaishnavi Dham, we decided to take a tour of the city. As such Jammu city is known for its ancient temples. We booked auto who took us to a place called Mini Haridwar situated on the banks of river Jammutawi. The temple complex houses replica temples of Chardham (Badrinath, Rameshwaram, Jagannathpuri & Dwarka), 12 Jyotirlingas, Pashupatinath among others. Also there is temple showing Devi taking rest in lying position (this is somewhat rare). A very nice atmosphere filling one with religious fervor. From there we went to Naudurga temple. There were shops authorised by Laddakh government selling varied range of woolens being carpets, pashmina shawls, blankets etc with attractive schemes. From there we went to Bahu Fort where the famous Bawey Wali Mata Temple is placed interior to the fort and the temple is dedicated to Goddess Kali.  It is assumed that this famous temple is constructed in 1822, immediately after Maharaja Gulab Singh took the throne of the Kingdom. Goddess, Bawey Wali Mata, is the presiding deity of the Jammu region. Lots of devotees throng to this temple offering prayers on Tuesdays and Sundays. It is strongly believed that the Bawey Wali Mata has mystical powers and the temple is second only to Mata Vaishno Devi temple.
A majestic garden, known as Bagh-e-Bahu with extensive lawns beautifully filled with flowers and plants is a favorite picnic spot and surrounds the Bahu Fort apart from a big fish aquarium.

From there we went to the famous Raghunath temple. Temple, constructed by Maharaja Gulab Singh and his son Maharaja Ranbir Singh starting in 1851 and finishing in 1857, is in the midst of a temple complex including Panjbakhtar Temple and Ranbireshwar Temple. The lovely temple complex consisting seven historical shrines adorned with a tower. The chief deities in these temples are different incarnations of Lord Vishnu, Lord Surya and Lord Shiva. The Mughal architectural style is prevalent in these temples, amply shown by the arches, niches and surfaces. Gold plated interiors are lovely.

It houses many mammoth statues of deities and a large number of ‘lingams’ (altar representing Lord Shiva). One of the lingams has been brought from Germany and is transparent where Deepak put behind the lingam is visible from the front.
The temple is renowned for its revered inscriptions. A Sanskrit library, contains the rarest and richest collections of manuscripts and ancient books, is functioning in the temple. It is a perfect religious place in which historians find more valuable materials.
After doing jaap & meditation for some hours followed by shopping in market outside the temple we proceeded to Vaishnavi dham where after taking dinner we went to adjacent Jammu Railway station for catching the night train Himgiri express (12356) to Lucknow. Departure from Jammu 22:45 hours and reached Lucknow next day on 2nd August at 15:00 hours.
This was completion of a very fulfilling journey and also once in a lifetime experience both for a very arduous yatra among most beautiful Kashmir valley and great Spiritual experience of Shri Amarnath ji’s ashirwad.

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