Being a country of diversity, India holds many stories, facts, mythological sites in its arms. From the creation of this universe till now India has encountered many mythological events; that led to the formation of several temples and other periodic monuments. Every temple or site has special importance in the Hindu mythology and so is Char Dham. Char Dham in India are the four pilgrimage sites that are situated in different states of India and is highly sacred. It comprises Dwarka, Badrinath, Puri, and Rameshwaram.
1. Puri: Jagannath Temple
Puri Dham or Jagannath temple is the first among the list of Char Dham in India. The Legend has it that Jagannath temple was built by Lord Vishwakarma. According to the story, King Indradhyaman saw a dream in which Lord Krishna asked him to build the idols. The idols should be made with the trunk of the tree, on the seaside of Puri and then install it in a temple. On the order of Lord Krishna, the king started the search for a qualified carpenter for making idols from wood.
After a few days, an old brahmin came and expressed his desire to make the idols that too in one month. But he placed the condition in front of the king. He wanted to work in a closed room and no one would open the door before one month. If someone will open the doors before that, he leaves without completing the idols.
Initially, the king heard the sound of making the idols but after some time he didn’t hear anything. And in dilemma opened the door. As the condition, the old brahmin left without completing the idols. Now the king realized that the old brahmin was none other than the Lord Vishwakarma. However, the king placed the incomplete idols in the temple and started worshiping them.
Here Hindu devotees worship Lord Jagannath along with his brother Balbhadra and sister Subhadra. Puri is situated at the coast of Bay of Bengal in the state of Orissa. The temple of Puri is dedicated to the Lord Jagannath and his siblings. Jagannath temple is 1000 years old and only Hindu devotees can worship there. Non-Hindu visitors are not allowed there.
Visit the temple between 5 am to 9 pm and you are not allowed to click pictures there.
2. Badrinath Dham: Badrinath Temple
Badrinath Dham is located on the Garhwal Hills near the bank of the river Alaknanda, in the state of Uttarakhand. According to the mythology, the first incarnation of Lord Vishnu Nar and Narayan was famous for performing great penances. Once they decided to undergo penance for the welfare of all living entities. They went to an open place and sat in Yog Mudra started their penance. The Goddess Lakshmi is the consort of Lord Vishnu protected his incarnations by taking the form of Badri tree. She protected them from the harsh condition of weather while they were in penance. This made the incarnation very happy and therefore they named this place as Badrikashram.
In Badrinath temple, there is an idol of Lord Vishnu in the form of Yog Mudra. This place was famous for having Badri trees, but now there is no tree. The town lies between two mountains which are known as Nar and Narayan. One can visit the place Chamoli, where it is actually situated, and worship the idol.
The temple remains open from 4.30 in the morning to 9 pm and is closed between 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm.
3. Rameshwaram Dham: Ramanathaswamy Temple
Rameshwaram is situated in the state of Tamil Nadu near the ocean and the Ramanathaswamy temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is located in the Gulf of Mannar at the tip of the Indian peninsula. When Lord Ram was going for the battle with Ravan he thought that he needs to impress lord Shiva first. As Ravana was the greatest devotee of Shiva, it would be difficult to beat him without the blessing of Shiva. Therefore he himself made the Shivling to impress Lord Shiva so that his blessing would help him to kill Ravan. That Shivling is now worshiped in the Ramanathswamy Temple which was made from the sand of ocean. There are 22 jalkundas that has sweet water which was said to be created by Lord Rama with his arrow.
This is the place from where the Ram Setu, the bridge, has been built in between India and Sri Lanka. Among all the Char Dham in India, people come to this Dham to repent on their bad deeds. It is a place which gives you salvation from your bad deeds and fulfills all your wishes.
You can visit the temple between 5:00 am to 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm to 9:00 pm.
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4. Dwarka Dham: Dwarkadhish Temple
Dwarka is the last in the list of Char Dham in India because it gives salvation from the cycle of life. It is situated near the coastline of the Arabian Sea, which is 340 km away from Ahmedabad, Gujarat. Being in the west, it is located where the Gomti River meets the Arabian Sea. The Dwarka is said to be the home of Lord Krishna. He was the ruler of Dwarka and had settled the city thereafter roaming around for a perfect place. The Dwarka Dham is believed to be a Dham where people can get Salvation from the cycle of life. And therefore it has more importance than other Char Dham in India.
The Dwarka city was made in Dwapar Yug by Lord Krishna himself. But it has been destroyed by the ocean and submerged in it 6 times. What we see today is the Dwarka which is built 7th time. It has been found out that half of the Dwarka is still under the sea.
The devotees come here to worship Lord Krishna and the timing of visiting the temple is 6 am to 9:30 at night.