In the remote corner of the exotic west of Tibet, the pristine Mount Kailash (6714 meters) dominates the entire region’s landscape. The celestial beauty of Mt. Kailash is not only fascinating, it is also the ultimate pilgrimage destination for Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Bon religions from around the world. For all four religions, Mount Kailash is the spiritual epicenter. Every year, thousands of devotees make the pilgrimage to the holy Mt. Kailash for spiritual purification.
Here are the 10 important spiritual facts about Mt. Kailash.
1. The Kailash parikrama or the sacred circumambulation
Hindus pay reverence to Mount Kailash as a throne of Lord Shiva, the great Tirtha and the ultimate pilgrimage site on earth. It is considered most auspicious to make a religious pilgrimage around its fifty-three kilometers circuit which is also known as Kailash Parikrama.
2. A place for finding the ultimate nirvana
Jains refer to Mount Kailash as Mt. Asthapada and believe that their religious founder, Rishavdev, attained Nirvana – The Ultimate Happiness there.
3. The Buddhist connection
Buddhists have named Mount Kailash Garu Rimpoche, meaning “precious jewel of snow” and a gigantic mandala. According to the legend it is the abode of Chakra Samvara and Guru Rinpoche – Padma Sambhava, who brought Buddhism to Tibet and beyond.
4. Dwelling of the wise one
In Tibetan Buddhism it is believed that Mt Kailash is the dwelling place of Chakra Samvara Demchog (the Wheel of Bliss) and his consort, Dorje Phagmo. It is also venerated as the abode of one of the great Tibetan yogi – Milarepa.
5. Kora: circumambulation for the pursuit of spirituality
Buddhist pilgrims perambulate clockwise around the mountain and it is called Kailash Kora. Kailash Kora has the greatest spiritual significance for the Buddhists.
6. The amazing beliefs
In Tibet’s pre-Buddhist, Shamanic Bon religion, Mt Kailash is abode of Sky Goddess Sipaimen, and is in the form of a giant Mandala that is the central point of all Tantra Rituals and Forces. The founder of Bon Religion, Tonpa Shenrab Miwoche is believed to live on Mt Kailash, which is considered as nine- story Swastika Mountain, and the axis mundi – the central pillar of the world. The Bonpo Pilgrims walk counter-clockwise around the Mt Kailash.
7. The sacred lakes that adds to the charm
In fact, the entire region of Mt. Kailash has religious significance. The region also includes the two turquoise-blue, pristine high-altitude lakes of Mansarovar and Rakshesa.
8. Source of the four major rivers
Another uniqueness contributing to the mystical and spiritual aspects of Kailash is that four most sacred rivers of the Indian sub-continent begin from here – Sutlej, Karnili, Brahmaputra and Indus. The end of these rivers is more than 2,000 kilometers apart, yet they all have their source within hundred kilometers of Mt. Kailash.
9. Naturally rewarding journey of a lifetime
Mt. Kailash, the holy region, is known as navel of the universe, attracting scholars and researchers from all over the world. Mt. Kailash (also known as the ‘Sumeru Parbat’ in Hindu epics) provides a spiritually enriching, naturally unique and a truly rewarding journey of a life-time.
10. Of legends, myths and ancient traditions
Every object in this area is sacred and related to many of the legends and mythical stories from ancient scriptures and oral traditions.
Mount Kailash so magical, so majestic, so serene, and so tranquil makes her existence timelessly sprinkling the aura of spirituality throughout the Himalayan region.