Monday, 22 April 2013

Devprayag : Confluance of two rivers

Dev Prayag is the confluence of the two holy rivers, the Bhagirathi and the Alaknanda. It is the first prayag on the way to Badrinath. After this confluence, the river is known as Ganges. The holiness of this place is considered equal to the famous Triveni sangam confluence at Allahabad where the Ganges, Yamuna and Saraswati rivers joint together.

Bhagirathi flows with strong currents and meets with calmer river Alaknanda. The confluence got the name tag 'Dev' from a poor Brahmin called Deva Sharma who performed “rigorous religious austerities” here and was blessed by Rama, Vishnu’s incarnation and hero of the epic Ramayana. There are two Kunds or ponds on the banks of the rivers which join here, these are: the Vasistha Kund on the Bhagirathi and the Brahma Kund on the bank of the Alakananda. Legend also mentions about this site being Vishnu’s navel and that Brahma meditated here.

The many legendary kings who did penance here were, Rama - to atone for his sin of killing the demon-king Ravana, a Brahmin - as well as his father Dasaratha. Legend also states that Vishnu entreated the demon-king Bali for 3 steps of land here. Legend also states that Rama, before attaining salvation, vanished from here. Vaishnavites consider it as one of the 108 Divya Desams (sacred abodes of Vishnu) for undertaking a pilgrimage during their lifetime.

A famous temple dedicated to Rama called the Raghunath Math is located above the confluence. A 15 ft (4.6 m) high, black granite image of Rama is worshipped here as the central icon. It is believed to be installed in the temple about 1250 years ago. A Shiva temple is also located nearby.

Ancient stone inscriptions have also been traced here. The stone inscriptions dates the temple’s existence to the first century AD. The temple, which is 72 ft (21.9 m) in height, has a quadrilateral pyramidal shape with width narrowing towards the top of the temple tower. The top is surrounded by a white cupola. The sloping roof over the cupola is supported by wooden pillars. The roof is made up of copper plates adorned by plated ball with a spire. An image of Garuda (a mythical bird in human form with a beak and wings to fly, which is the vahana or vehicle of Vishnu). On the festive days of Ram Navami, Vasant Panchami and Baisakhi, which are special occasions at this temple, the god is placed on a stone thrown for worship. A stair way from the temple of Deva Prayag of Panch Prayag, leads to the confluence of Bhagirathi and Alakananda rivers where a distinct demarcation of the churning muddy stream of Alakananda mix with the saffron clear flows of Bhagirathi is seen to evolve as Ganges, the holiest river for Hindus. Brahmins and pilgrims feed the fish specie Cyprinus denticulatus (4–5 ft (1.2–1.5 m) length) at this site.








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11 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing these beautiful pictures and fascinating information.

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  2. That is informative. The picture look so beautiful and the confluence is very much visible.

    http://rajniranjandas.blogspot.in/2013/04/the-valley-view.html

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  3. Noce post. I'd love to see a place where two large rivers meet - the White Nile and the Blue Nile would be top of my list!

    Stewart M - Melbourne

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  4. Really nice, one goes slow, and the other goes fast, great photos.

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  5. Nice snaps!! Thanks for sharing.

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  6. Nice snaps!! Thanks for sharing.

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  7. Lovely pictures , quite inviting .

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  8. the tempest in the current is so week captured! I almost made up my mind to visit Naini lets now see when it happens.

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  9. I love Hindu mythology, it is my favourite. Thanks for all the information, I learned a lot! Beautiful pics!

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  10. The confluence is too serene. Nice pictures.

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  11. Nice captures! confluence looking amazing and attracts to visit.
    it's really, Devprayag is a holy land of the holy rivers from the pristine time.

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