15 Jan, 2019 Great Nepal Treks
An Entertaining Yet Spiritual Experience
If you visit Nepal, especially Kathmandu and do not visit Pashupatinath Temple during the evening for the Aarati session, you are indeed missing something. Pashupatinath Temple, a holy shrine for Lord Shiva's followers and one of the most important temples for Hindus, it is one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Nepal. Its history dates back to 400 B.C., and holds a very important place in the hearts of Nepalese. Hindus and non-Hindus from all over the world also come to Nepal to visit the temple every year which is believed to be the gateway to heaven. While Pashupatinath Temple is quite popular on its own and the name is enough, the temple lights up even more during the evening time. Every day after 5 PM the banks of the Bagmati river is filled with devotees and enthusiastic tourists. The excitement builds up as the priests start to prepare for the evening Aarati.
After 5, both the banks of the Bagmati river near the Pashupati Temple is filled with people as they patiently for the Aarati to start. As priests start the Aarati, the singers and musicians start to sing Bhajan (religious songs) while the dancers perform a classical dance to them. The dance and the music are quite entertaining but they are not the main attraction of the evening. The main attraction is the Aarati itself as the priests perform each and every step of the procedure precisely with mesmerizing moves and syncing perfectly with the music and the environment. Some devotees even can be seen drowning into the moment and dancing along to the music. While it is quite entertaining to witness the event, the feeling is amazing. Being at Pashupati during the Aarati feels very soothing to the soul and makes you forget all your pains and suffering for a while. Maybe that is the reason why hundreds of people visit the temple every day after 5 P.M to witness the Aarati. As we mentioned in the beginning, if you come to Kathmandu and do not visit Pashupatinath Temple during the evening for the Aarati session, you are indeed missing something.
So, next time you visit Kathmandu, make sure to go to the Pashupatinath Temple in the evening to witness the spiritual Aarati session.