India is a country which holds many secrets and many amazing things to make it hard to believe that even these things and places even exist, today I am going to introduce with one of such wonders in India.
This is about the Patal Bhuvneshwar temple in Uttarakhand. It is a limestone cave temple 14 km from Gangolihat in the Pithoragarh district of Uttarakhand state of India. This temple is located in the village of Bhubneshwar. As per the legend, the cave enshrines Lord Shiva and 33 crores, demigods. This cave is 160 m long and 90 feet deep from the entrance. The cave has a narrow tunnel-like opening connected with various numbers of caves. The cave is lit up by electricity. This cave was built by the flow of water. It is not just one cave but a series of caves within caves.
As per the legend, the first human who discovered this cave was king Ritupurna who was the ruler of Ayodhya and he was of Surya Dynasty in Treta Yug. The story is about King Rituparna and King Nala. It is said that once king Nala was defeated by his wife Queen Damayanti to escape the imprisonment by his wife king Nala request King Ritupurna to hide him. Ritupurna took his to Himalaya and suggested his stay there. While going back to the home he was attracted by a deer that ran into the woods and went after it. When he failed to find the deer he rested under a tree where he had a strange dream in which the deer asked him not to him. When he woke up he went to the cave where a guard was standing he enquired about the cave and was allowed to go inside at the entrance of the cave he met Sheshnag he carried him to his hood inside the cave and he saw the marvel of the Gods taking place inside the cave. After his visit, the cave was closed for ages and it was predicted in the Skandpurana that it will be reopened in Kaliyuga. Shankaracharya during his visit to Kalyug to Himalaya re-discovered this cave. Since then regular worship is done at this place.
The journey inside the cave has to be done under feeble lights and iron chains. The stone formation of Sheshnag can be seen holding the earth. The Havan is performed in a dimly lit entrancing atmosphere under the spell of holy chants. It is believed that the cave is connected by an underground route to Mount Kailasha. It is also believed that the Pandavas went there the last journey in the Himalayas after meditating at this mesmerizing place in front of Lord Shiva. This pilgrimage is situated at 1350 m above sea level dedicated mainly to Lord shiva almost every god that we have heard or read about resides in this cave. It is believed that worship offered at Patal Bhuvneshwar is equivalent to worshipping at Char Dham of Uttarakhand.
The roads end half a kilometer away from this cave. You have to descend almost 100 steps into this cave to enter garbh-girha it feels like you are entering the very center of the earth.
Each stone reveals the story of Hindu pantheon in the shapes of gods, goddesses’ saints, and known mythological characters.
If you ever get a chance to visit this place to experience the mystifying environment and one of the wonders created by nature itself a gift from the mother nature to all of us to take time from our daily life and experience the divinity of this world and divinity that lies within us which we don’t get the time in our daily busy life to explore.
I hope you like this article and plan your next journey to this beautiful place in search of peace and self-assessment.