Sat, 02 Dec, 2023

Renovation of Jaya Bageshwori Temple

By Bimal Gaire

Kathmandu valley is known as the "City of Temples". "Gaushala" is the most popular area amongst all inside the valley because it is considered as the most sacred place due to the presence of "Pasupatinath Temple" and "Jaya Bageshwori Temple". Pasupatinath Temple is one of the most popular Hindu Temples of the world. Yearly, thousands of pilgrims visit Kathmandu to pray in this holy temple. Besides this giant and hugely popular temple, there lies Jaya Bageshwori Temple with its own uniqueness and importance. Jaya Bageshwori Temple is dedicated to three major goddesses; namely, Maha Saraswoti, Maha Laxmi and Maha Kali. The temple is extensively designed with brass in pagoda style. Goddess Saraswoti is known as the goddess of memory, speech and wisdom. This temple is a reflection of the power of the Maha Kali which she reflects with her weapon, a symbol to drive away the evil temptations and acts from one’s mind. Every morning people clasp their hands and mutter prayers, visiting the temple area. The statue of this temple has to be changed every twelve years. This process is called 'Kalevar Fernu' and can take about six months to complete. This renovation and idol changing process has recently occurred in the temple where the temple was covered with white clothes and no rituals were carried out inside the premises. Apart from the statue of the goddess, there are many other statues of Bhairav and Ganesh in the temple. An interesting fact of this temple is that the Idol of Ganesh in the temple is considered as the human head of the lord Ganesh before his head was chopped off by Lord Shiva and replaced with an elephant’s. Another interesting fact is that, during the ancient times, when the 'Sati Pratha' was prevalent in the country, the “sati” had to offer all her belongings and jewelry to the temple prior to the ceremony in "Aryaghat".  During this period, the temple was considered to be more prestigious than the Pasupatinath temple. Although the temple is one of the most important parts of our history, many of us are unaware of its history.  The local residents around the area have been actively taking care of the temple and its premises. We can see elderly people gathering and relaxing in the cold breeze that passes by the temple area. There is constant religious music playing during the morning hours near the temple area which energizes the air and people believe that it makes their soul pure. Recently the temple was renovated and a beautiful Bhairav art painting has been placed inside, which has been a center of attraction to the visitors of the temple. This is a  good step for the preservation of our culture, tradition and importance of "Jaya Bageshwori" temple.