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Kedarnath Jyotirlinga

Kedareshwara or Kedarnath Jyotirlinga situated in the hills of Himalayas is one of the twelve sacred Jyotirlingas where Shiva was present physically. Let us hear the beautiful legend behind this shrine After the famous war of Mahabharata, Pandavas who won the war felt guilty of all the killings that happened during the war. They sought forgiveness for their sins. They were aware that only Lord Shiva could absolve their sins and purify them. They decided to search for Shiva and traveled all across. Pandavas went to Kashi, the city of Shiva to meet him. Shiva did not want to meet the Pandavas as they had committed some grave and serious sins. Shiva left for Kailasha when he got to know of Pandavas' arrival at Kashi. When Pandavas got to know of this they decided to visit the Himalayas. When Shiva saw them coming he disguised himself into a bull to hide from them. When the Pandavas saw this bull they knew that it was special and had to be Shiva. Bheema, the mightiest of the Pandavas started chasing the bull. The bull dug a pit and tried to hide underground. Bheema pulled him from the tail. During all this chasing and running around the bull spilt into five pieces and scattered all across. The Pandavas built temples across all these five spots to honor Shiva. Pleased with their worship Shiva forgave them. These five temples together are called the PanchaKedara. The hind part of the bull was placed in Kedara and is known as the Kedarnath jyotirlinga. Another legend tells that this jyotirlinga was built by the divine twin Nara and Narayana who are the incarnations of Lord Vishnu. Pleased with their worship Shiva decided to stay near them and manifested himself into the Jyotirlinga. This is the reason why Lord Vishnu is worshipped along with Shiva in Kedarnath.

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