Mystic Haridwar (Uttarakhand Chronicles)
Sometimes you have to realize that the mystic nature of certain destinations have to be always something that you cherish besides the true spirituality that lies within you. It’s always a discovery that you want within yourself that you try to find in destinations all around the world. As a traveler you realize that the journey within yourself is what you make of the journeys outside.
With that thought, I realized, a journey was about to begin, it was certainly going to be a trip of our lifetime. My friends and I had embarked upon a beautiful trip that would certainly change our life for the best of the reasons!! West Himalayas, was going to be the ultimate destination for all of us to reach to finally. But before that, we had our fair share of adventure, journeys and certainly some spirituality…
On that note, we realized that what better to start upon a journey than to visit the ultimately spiritual and holy city of Haridwar…
Har-ki-Pauri is quite the place to be especially at the evening. The prayers and the aarti there are really enchanting, besides the brightly lit temples at the foot of the Holy Ganges. Quite a spectacle to capture indeed.
This revered place is the major landmark of the holy city of Haridwar. Literally, “Har” means “Lord Shiva”, “ki” means “of” and “paudi” means “steps”. Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu are believed to have visited the Brahmakund in Har ki Paudi in the Vedic times. There is a large footprint said to belong to Lord Vishnu on a stone wall.
It is believed that it is precise spot where the Ganges leaves the mountains and enters the plains. The ghat is on the west bank of Ganges canal through which the Ganges is diverted just to the north. Har ki pauri is also the area where thousands of pilgrims converge and the festivities commence during the Kumbha Mela, which takes place every twelve years, and the Ardh Kumbh Mela, which takes place every six.
Each evening at sunset priests perform Ganga Aarti here, when lights are set on the water to drift downstream. This is the most amazing and soul touching spectacle. A large number of people gather on both the banks of river Ganges to sing its praises. The priest hold large fire bowls in their hands, the gongs in the temples at the Ghat start ringing and the chants flowing out of lips fill the air. People float earthen diyas, with burning flickers and flowers in them as a symbol of hope and wishes .The golden hues of floral diyas reflected in the river Ganges present the most enchanting sight.
A Naga Baba, relaxing in the morning near the river….
People by the Holy Ganga in the morning…
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