Muktinath Temple is one among the most ancient Vishnu temples in the world. Muktinath Mandir situated at an altitude of 3710 meters above sea level in Mustang district Nepal.
The temple holds great significance for both Hindus and Buddhists and is considered one of the most important pilgrimage sites in the Himalayan region.
Hindu Belief: For Hindus, Muktinath Temple is part of the sacred pilgrimage circuit of 108 Divya Desams, or holy shrines dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
Devotees believe that paying homage here can cleanse them of sins and pave the way to salvation. The central deity of the temple is Lord Vishnu, enshrined in a beautifully adorned sanctum.
Buddhist Significance: Muktinath is not just a site of Hindu devotion; it holds immense importance in Tibetan Buddhism as well.
Known as “Chumig Gyatsa” in Tibetan, it is believed to be a meditation place for Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava), a revered figure in Tibetan Buddhism. This interfaith convergence adds to the temple’s unique allure.
Rituals and Experience
One of the most iconic rituals at Muktinath is the holy bath under the 108 water sprouts that encircle the temple. Pilgrims believe that this ritual purifies their soul and facilitates spiritual liberation.
The entire experience is a blend of devotion and natural wonder, as the icy waters descend from the snow-clad mountains, creating a surreal ambiance.
Devotees also offer prayers, light butter lamps, and circumambulate the temple, contributing to the serene and spiritual atmosphere that envelopes this sacred site.
- Address: Muktinath-Chumig Gyatsa Pilgrimage Site, Muktinath 33100, Nepal
- District: Mustang District
- Elevation: 3,762 m (12,343 ft)
- Affiliation: Hinduism
- Deity: Lord Muktinath (Lord Vishnu)
- Entry Fee: Free
- Visit Duration: 1 to 2 hours
- Dress Code: decent outfit recommended
- Architecture: Dravidian architecture
- Best Time to Visit: September to October
Significance of the Muktinath Temple
The significance of the Muktinath Temple is that it is believed that one who visits this temple attains salvation or Moksha. Moksha means freedom from the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. It helps one get rid of all their sins in this place.
Muktinath is called ‘Mukti Kshetra’ in Hinduism, which means the ‘place of liberation or moksha’. This temple is considered to be 106th amongst the 108 Divya Desams of Lord Vishnu, which is considered sacred by the Vaishnava sect.
It is also one of the ‘Shakti Peetha’. The Buddhists call the temple Chumig Gyatsa, which means “Hundred Waters” in Tibetan.
Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahesh are the three Supreme Gods and are also known as the Holy Trinity. Brahma is known as the Creator, Vishnu, the Protector, and Shiva or Maheshwara, the Destroyer.
Vaishnavites consider Vishnu as the Supreme Lord. Vaishnavites believe that Lord Vishnu holds the entire world as a Lotus in his hand. Lord Vishnu is merciful and he blesses one salvation.
Muktinath Temple is considered very important for Buddhists as well. This is because Guru Padmasambhava meditated in this place for some time. Tibetan Buddhists consider Muktinath an important place for Dakinis. It is one of the 24 Tantric places for them.
Timings of Muktinath Temple
Here are the timings of the Muktinath Temple:
|Morning Darshan||5:00 AM||12:00 PM|
|Evening Darshan||2:00 PM||9:00 PM|
|Seva Sankalpa||8:00 AM||9:00 AM|
|Tirtha Prasad||1:00 PM||3:00 PM|
|Pooja Timings||6:30 PM||8:30 PM|
How To Reach Muktinath Temple?
Due to bad weather conditions flying is a bit difficult. However, you can fly from Kathmandu to Pokhara which takes 25 minutes. From there, take another flight to Jomson. This is a 15-minute flight. From there, drive to the temple.
There are no train ways connecting Kathmandu and Muktinath.
The distance by road from Kathmandu to Muktinath is 378 km via Prithvi way and 460 km from Ah2 and Prithvi way. It takes 14 to 17 hours to reach depending on the route taken.
Mountain Flight: You can fly from Kathmandu to Muktinath via a Mountain Flight. The Mountain Flight drops you off at a place from where it is a 30 minutes walk to the temple.
Attractions around Muktinath Temple
- Mukti Kunda: Two holy water ponds known as “Laxmi Saraswoti Kunda” located in-front of the temple. Taking plung here is believed to rinse away your sin.
- Mukti Dhara: 108 water spouts (bull head shape) in the back yard of this temple where holy water (chill) from Gandaki river flows continuously. Taking bath under all these 108 Muktidhara is believed to bring salvation.
- Jwala Mai Temple: Continuously burning holy flame from rock located inside Dhola Mebar Gompa is just five minutes walking distance, situated in the south region of the temple.
- Mharme Lha Khang Gompa: Monastery located in the north region of the temple is dedicated to Guru Rimpoche also known as Padmasambhava.
- Swaminarayan: Satguru of Sabij Yoga.
- Shaligram: Fossils of the Jurassic park age that is found in Kali Gandaki River. This black stone is the symbol of lord Vishnu and kept in prayer room in the home.
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