Mahabilwakeshwar Temple in BillawarBillawar is one of the most ancient towns of Kathua district. It is well known for its old temples and historical sites.
Being located in the heart of district, its importance exists since the time of Mahabharata, the great epic of Indian mythology.
There are many ancient beliefs that legendary warriors, the five Pandavas had spent the last phase of their exile period at this place.
They were followers of Lord Shiva and used to pray regularly at this place. It is believed that they selected this area due to abundant presence of bilwa trees (a sacred tree) which are one of the favorites of Lord Shiva.
At the same place, the famous Mahabilwakeshwara Temple was later built. This temple was also called as Hari Hara temple in ancient times.
History of Mahabilwakeshwar Temple in BillawarInterestingly, according to some legends, the name of town is based on these bilwa trees. As such, it came to be known as Billawar. The city of Billawar is incepted around Mahabilwakeshwar Temple.
The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and built at the same place where Pandavas used to worship. Initially, it was built by pandavas itself, according to legends.
It is said that with the blessings of Lord Krishna, they built Mahabilwakeshwar temple in one night. But length of night was of 6 months almost. This fact was revealed by one oil merchant who crushed down raw material of 6 month in one night which is highly impossible.
Due to whistle blow by this merchant, the end work of temple got hampered and gumbat (top of atrium) remain incomplete which is still in same state.
Importance of Mahabilwakeshwar Temple in BillawarMahabilwakeshwar Temple is constructed in the ancient form displaying magnificent architecture of that time. It is famous in this region from ages and devotees usually visit this place in large numbers. The foot fall of devotees increases during Shravan month, particularly on Mondays. The temple is surrounded by small fencing all around along with billwa trees dotting its landscape. Archeological Survey of India has declared this temple as protected monument and special treatment is carried to preserve its architecture significance. The temple is synonymously significant for the existence and history of this town in Jammu region of state.
How to Reach Mahabilwakeshwar Temple in BillawarMahabilwakeshwar temple is situated in the Mooni region of Billawar. It has its existence near the banks of River Bhinni which is one of the major streams of Ujh River. To reach here, bus service is easily available from Billawar town. It is merely 9 km away from the center of town. Tourists can conveniently reach Billawar from major cities like Kathua, Jammu and Srinagar through bus service. Nearest rail head for Billawar is at Jammu Tawi while many trains also halt at Kathua station.
Best Time to Visit Mahabilwakeshwar Temple in BillawarMahabilwakeshwar Temple is an ancient temple visited throughout the year. People from all parts of the state and country visit here in large numbers. But Monday in every week is believed to be the most sacred day for visit. Shravan month is also important period to visit Mahabilwakeshwar temple in Billawar. Mahashivratri is another best time to pay devotion at Lord Shiva at this Temple.
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