Out of all the mythological tales that I have heard on Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, the story of Yam Dwar remains the most inquisitive one because of the certain mysteries surrounding it, which hasn’t found any answer till date. It is indeed interesting to hear that no one can stay inside Yam Dwar for long, else the person wouldn’t survive. Locals even narrate stories around it. Another mystery surrounding Yam Dwar is that no one knows from where or when it was constructed. There were research conducted through the reading of the stones but no one has been able to find anything concrete
Yam Dwar: The Gateway to the God of Death
Yam means Yamraj (known as the God of death in Hinduism) while the Dwar means Door. Yam Dwar holds an important relevance on Kailash Yatra route because everyone is required to pass through this gate, before starting the three days of Parikrama around Mount Kailash. There is no escape.
One must pass through this gate because it is believed that after a person cross Yam Dwar successfully; he or she gets liberated from all their pass sins. Also, the person gets free from all the negative energy surrounding them. It was a promise of Yamraj to the Shiva that wouldn’t allow anyone enter the surrounding of Kailash with negative energy and therefore it is believed that Yamraj guards this door personally
Who is Yamraj and why he guards Yam Dwar at Kailash
The Yamraj, who is believed to be the brother of Saturn, is known as the god of Death in Hinduism. It is said that once a person is about to die, it is Yamraj who comes to take the soul of the person from the earth to the heaven, where he shall evaluate your sins and decide the grant of your next life. Yamraj is considered to be the first human to die who went to the heaven and hence became its monarch.
There is a belief that once there was a man who was unwilling to die in the hand of Yamraj, when he came to receive his soul. Instead, he ran to a Shiva temple, uttering the “Maha Mritiunjaya” mantra. It is said that it is then that Shiva appeared and ordered Yamraj to leave this man. But tied in his duty, Yamraj refused which resulted in Shiva killing him. Yamraj was given another life by Shiva, when the other gods intervened and that is when Yamraj promised Shiva that a person who would visit his abode at Kailash with faith, will be freed from all the sins. He shall personally look into it and that’s how Yam Dwar is believed to be originated
Things to keep in Mind while circumambulation around Yam Dwar
- You would need to take three circles in clockwise motion, before passing through Yam Dwar
- Don’t stay inside for long according to the local beliefs
- Once you will cross Yam Dwar, DON’T LOOK BEHIND till the time Yam Dwar is out of sight
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