Kashi Vishvanath Temple is one of the most famous Hindu temples dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is located in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India. The temple stands on the western bank of the holy river Ganga, and is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, the holiest of Shiva temples. The main deity is known by the name Vishvanatha or Vishveshvara meaning Ruler of The Universe. Varanasi city is also called Kashi, and hence the temple is popularly called Kashi Vishvanath Temple.
Know suprising facts about Kashi Vishwanath Temple:
- The Divine Golden Chatra on Top: The temple has a golden chatra on top. It is believed that any wish is fulfilled if it is made after seeing the chartra.
- Shanidev come to Kashi in search of Lord Shiva: It is believed that when the earth was created the first ray of light fell on Kashi. There are legends that believe that Shiva had actually stayed here for some time. Shiva is supposed to the guardian of the city and its people. It is said that in Kashi even the nine planets cannot do their own free will and have to abide by Shiv. Shani was supposed to have come to Kashi in search of Shiv and could not enter the temple for 7 and half years. When you visit Kashi you will see the temple for Shanidev outside the Vishwanath temple.
- Devotees visit Jyotirlinga to attain Moksha: It is believed that a faithful attains salvation (Moksha) if they are able to see the Shivlingam.
- Construction of the Kashi Vishwanath temple: Mughal Emperor Akbar gave permission to build the original temple, which was later destroyed by Aurangazeb.
- Jyotirlingas in Kashi Vishwanath temple: Kashi Vishwanath is revered as one of the 12 Jyotirlingas of Shiva. It is also said that Lord Shiva actually stayed here for some time. Kashi has been derived from the word KAS, which literally means to shine
What is the significance behind the temple?
Varanasi is regarded among the holiest of the Hindu cities. The Kashi Vishwanath temple is widely recognized as one of the most important places of worship in Hindu religion. Inside the Kashi Vishvanath Temple is the Jyotirlinga of Shiva, Vishveshvara or Vishvanath. The Vishveshvara Jyotirlinga has a very special and unique significance in the spiritual history of India.
Many leading saints, including Adi Sankaracharya, Ramakrishna Paramhansa, Swami Vivekananda, Bamakhyapa, Goswami Tulsidas, Swami Dayananda Saraswati, Sathya Sai Baba and Gurunanak have visited the site. A visit to the temple and a bath in the river Ganges is one of many methods believed to lead one on a path to Moksha. Because of the immense popularity and holiness of Kashi Vishwanath temple, hundreds of temples across India have been built in the same architectural style. Many legends record that the true devotee achieves freedom from death and saṃsara by the worship of Shiva. Shiva’s devotees on death being directly taken to his abode on Mount Kailash by his messengers and not to Yama.
Architectural Style: Hindu Temple
Address: Lahori Tola, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh 221001
Date built: 1780
Built by: Ahilyabai Holkar
Contact No. 0542 239 2629
The Kashi Vishwanath Temple opens daily at 2:30 AM and closes at 11 PM.
There are 5 aartis of Shree Kashi Vishwanath:
. Mangala Aarti :- 3.00 – 4.00 (Morning).
. Bhoga Aarti :- 11.15 to 12.20 (Day).
. Sandhya Aarti :- 7.00 to 8.15 (Evening).
. Shringara Aarti :- 9.00 to 10.15 (Night).
. Shayana Aarti :- 10.30-11.00 (Night).
Security arrangements do not allow any cell phones, camera, belts with metal buckle, cigarettes, lighters, etc. inside the temple.
How to Reach:
- By Air – The nearest airport to the city is Babatpur which is 22 km from Varanasi. Direct flights are operated by Air India as well as other private airlines from cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Agra, Bhubaneswar and Lucknow.
- By Train – The nearest Railway Station is Varanasi Junction or the Mughal Sarai Junction. Several trains connect the city to almost all major parts of the country like Delhi, Chennai, Howrah, Jammu, Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Guwahati.
- By Road – The city is located on NH2 highway linking Kolkata to New Delhi. Several buses are available from places like Delhi, Agra, Lucknow, Kanpur, Allahabad, Patna, Nagpur, Gorakhpur, Azamgarh and Gaya.
Places of Interest:
- Tulsi Manas Temple: This temple is yet another important shrine in Varanasi. Dedicated to Lord Rama, Tulsi Manas Temple is situated next to another famed shrine called Durga Temple. It is a white-marble temple that has its walls covered with the text from Tulsi Das written Ramcharitramanas. It is believed that the temple is located at a place where Tulsi Das wrote this famous Indian epic.
- Kathwala Temple: This temple is famous for its exquisite architecture and wood work. It is believed that the temple was built by King of Nepal and thus, this shrine is also called Nepali Temple. It is situated in the Lalita Ghat and catches the attention of many visitors in Varanasi. The intricate wood carving is what attracts visitors the most; the temple reflects the refined taste for good architecture taste of the rulers of Nepal.