One of the five Kedar is Madmaheshwar Mahadev. The existence of the temple is because of the below tale.
After winning the glorious battle of Mahabharata and killing their brothers, relatives (Gotra-Hatya), Gurus(Brahma-Hatya), and much more, Pandavas took up the path of penance. Though the war was fought for righteousness, the killing is yet killing. So, to wash their sins, Pandavas started a pilgrimage to Lord Mahadeva to wash their sins.
Lord Mahadeva, incensed by the dishonesty and death caused, wanted to avoid them. So he disguised himself as Nandi, the bull, and disappeared into the ground with different body parts appearing in different places.
The Lord showed himself has Kedarnath as the main central land and five other associate spots. The latter are Panchakedara, with two peripheral areas dedicated to Goddess Parvati, and the Ardhanarishwara form of Lord Mahadeva.
The temple Madmaheshwar or Madmaheshwar Mahadev marks the presence of Lord Shiva in the form of a bull navel. There is a navel-shaped lingam in the Madhya Maheshwara. Along with the Madmaheshwar Mahadev (literally, the drunken Lord), the other five parts are situated at Kedarnath with the hump, Tunganath with arms, face at Rudranath, Nabhi or navel at Madmaheshwar Mahadev, and Hair at the Kalpeshwar temple.
Pandavas appreciated the reappearance in 5 different forms and built temples as part of their penance and worship of Lord Mahadeva. Finally, they got free of their sins and went on to their journey to heaven called Swargarohini.
Among the temples of the Kedara circuit, Kedarnath, Madmaheshwar, and Tunganath are built in the North Himalayan style of architecture. It is an unwritten custom to visit Lord Badrinath, the pilgrimage site of Lord Vishnu, after seeing the Kedarnath temple.
Inside the temple is a navel-shaped black rock shiva linga enshrined inside it. There are two associative shrines, one for the Goddess Parvati, Lord Shiva’s consort, and the other in a half-man, half-woman form dedicated to the Ardhanarishwara form of the God.
There is another temple on the right of the main temple dedicated to Goddess Saraswati. The temple priests are brought from South India, known as Jangamas. They belong to the Lingayat sect of the Mysore from the Karnataka state.
Since it is cold here, the temple remains open for some period in a year. The temple is open to the public at the beginning of summer, typically in May, and stays open till October/November, when the winter season begins. During harsh winters, the symbolic idol of the Lord Mahadeva is shifted to the Ukhimath with religious formalities to continue the worship.
Reaching Madmaheshwar Mahadev
Garhwal Himalayas pilgrimage sites are accessible from Rishikesh. It is connected by train to the rest of the country. One can reach Rishikesh from Delhi via road or railway easily. The nearest airport to Rishikesh is Jolly Grant airport in Dehradun.
After Rishikesh, one must reach Guptakashi, situated on a state highway through Devprayag, Rudraprayag, and Kund. Madmaheshwar Mahadev is accessible after a 21 km trek and a 6 km journey by road. The shrine can also be accessed from Uniyana via Ukhimath.
Trekking to Madmaheshwar Mahadev
The base camp Uniyana is located 18km away from the Ukhimath. The region is blessed with rich biodiversity, including flora and fauna, Himalayan monal, various endemic flowers, Himalayan Musk deer, etc.
The trekking route starts from Uniyana and goes to Ransi village, Gaundhar, and further via Bartoli, Katara, Nanu, and Madmaheshwar Mahadev.
Kalimath and Gaundhar are two scenic sites along the way to the temple. Kalimath is called a Siddhapeetha, and many pilgrims come to this shrine of Goddess Mahakali.
Visitors find peace and spiritual comfort here with temples of Mahakali and Mahalakshmi and Lord Mahadeva himself. Kalimath is famous for the Bhairava temple.
Gaundhar is famous for the confluence of Marakanga Ganga and Mahdyamaheshwara Ganga rives, which offer captivating views and pure chilled holy water.
Madmaheshwar Mahadev and the stay
Madhmaheshwar is a small sacred town with mysteries hidden at its core. The whole village gathers to pray to Lord Mahadeva in the evenings. The city has small huts; the town has a culture of its own and unique traditions.
The city has some anachronic culture of an old-world still scenting the atmosphere. With the snow-capped Himalayas, the temple looks as if it was put here only to enhance the beauty of the landscape.
The thick deodar forests add on a pinch of magic among everything else. Situated at 3265 m above sea level, one should not expect 5-star or even 3-star stays here. Life is primary and original. People are welcoming, and you could opt to remain in a staycation homestay. Smiling and helpful visages replying with their eyes as if they knew already that you were to visit and the Lord told it to them himself.
Madmaheshwar Mahadev For Bikers and wanderers
Coming from Rishikesh, you must not forget to stop at this place called Teen Dhaara, famous for its Pahadi food. Rich in the handmade spices used for the food, this might be one of the best things on your journey. It would help if you felt high while swimming through these exhilarating views of Garhwal.
This is the feeling of permanence in existence, connecting with a spiritual being. Whatever we may feel the power of our capacities is, roaming around this world feels like a sand particle lost in the vast expanse of this universe. You will also meet Brooks, rivers, and some endemic flowers on the way uphill. Don’t forget to relax and talk to them for a while.
If you bring your vehicle, do not forget to stop at Srinagar to rest. The last village on the way before the trek starts is Ransi. After crossing Ransi, on your vehicle, The walk to Madhamaheshwar starts. If you want to check whether your 20s body has not turned into a 50s one, this trek is perfect for you.
It would help if you climbed up to challenge your limits. This 18km trek takes around 8-9 hours to climb up. Ascent followed by a descent, this trek will take you to a meditative state while you go up the mountain. If you start early in the morning, you can reach the temple during arti. Food and water during the climb shall not be an issue as there are small hamlets you’ll find every 3-4 km.
Do not expect 5-star level food. You will indeed find excellent Uttaranchal cuisine home meals here. People are welcoming, and the warmth can be felt in their behavior and smiles. On the way are many taps which pour out the soul of water and you’ll feel refreshed after drinking it.
Choose to stay in tents and blankets to sleep under the stars or homestays on the top. The choice is yours. After resting for the night, you can go for the Budha Madhmeshwar, a 2 km-long trek from the main temple. Though the climb is challenging, as they say,
This saying is realized when you reach the Madmaheshwar Mahadev. From Chaukhamba peaks, you can enjoy breathtaking views. It’s the beauty in its purest form, untouched and unbiased. A unique, serene experience awaits you.
The main thing to do is to pray and offer arti in the Madmaheshwar Mahadev. One must not forget to sit in the temple and meditate for some time. This fills your soul with blessings. The spiritual aura of the temple produces healing vibrations. One of the oldest religious places in India, the temple comprises North Himalayan architecture with a rock-cut sanctum.
There is a lake called Kanchani Taal situated 16 km from the Madmaheshwar Mahadev. It can be reached by climbing a trek, but this trek can be pretty tricky.
To experience the Himalayas and the captivating view of the surroundings, you must never forget to visit the Budha Madhmaheshwar. This temple-shrine structure is a holy spot made of a cluster of rocks.
The journey to this place can be pretty wondrous as the famous peaks like Kedarnath, Neelkanth, Trishul, Kamet, etc., are visible from here. Lush green meadows offer you a quiet, still place to sit in, with a dynamically changing environment.
It is the summit of experience one can get. The clouds changing shapes every minute while you sit through them can take you to another universe for some moments.
Ukhimath, or the Madmaheshwar Mahadev, is an integral part of the Pancha Kedar system. This is a must-visit place while going for the Pancha Kedar visit. In the winter months, the winters get spine freezing.
The idols of Madhmaheshwar and Kedarnath are brought down to this place to continue worship for the frozen six months of yeat. Whatever is wished here gets filled, and no one from here is believed to have left empty-handed. The temples of Kedarnath and Madhmaheshwar are closed during this time. The water inside the temple is considered holy and said to remove all sins and purify the soul.
Tips for visiting Madmaheshwar Mahadev It is a must to carry woolen clothes. Moreover, it would help if you took boots that are non-slippery and comfortable enough to support you during the climb. Carry water and a stick to prevent falling while you track; you might also get water from the villages on the way but never keep your bottle empty.
DO NOT forget to keep a charged portable charging unit. You might face issues with the network support, and you might not be able to call anyone; you can still click pictures. Do not want to forget to bring a speaker to listen to some chill Indi pop music.
Any questions related to Madmaheshwar Mahadev, please leave them in the comments below.