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Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple

India is known as a land of many religions. Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Sikhism, Buddhism, and Jainism are some of the religions practiced in India. But in India majority of the population follows or believes in Hinduism, and talking about Hindu deities, Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahesh are considered to have the highest stature. Out of these three Hindu deities, Shiva is one of the prominent figures in the Hindu religion.

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple

In this article, we will talk about one of the most important religious sites or pilgrimage sites for Hindu Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple, which is dedicated to Lord Shiva.


There are many Hindu temples globally, but Kashi Vishwanath Temple is one of the most popular. Hindus worldwide flock to the Kashi Vishwanath Temple to worship Shiva. Kashi Vishwanath Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. This temple is located in Varanasi, also known as Kashi, Uttar Pradesh, India, and it is situated on the western bank of the river Ganga. Kashi is one of the oldest cities in the world.

There are 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva, which are at different places; a Jyotirlinga is regarded as the holiest of all the temples of Shiva. Out of the 12 Jyotirlingas, the Jyotirlinga named Vishwanath of Lord Shiva is famous in Kashi as Kashi Vishwanath Temple. According to Hindu doctrine, one will attain salvation through a pilgrimage to this temple. Vishwanath or Vishweshwar is the name of the main deity which people worship in the Kashi Vishwanath temple. The meaning of Vishwanath and Vishweshwar is who rules the universe or, in other words, ruler of the universe.

History of Kashi Vishwanath Temple

The Kashi Vishwanath Temple, situated on the western bank of the river Ganges in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, is dedicated to Lord Shiva. According to tradition, this temple is where Lord Shiva and Mother Parvati are originally enthroned. It is believed that this temple was built by King Vikramaditya about 2500 years ago. During the 11th century, King Harishchandra renovated the structure; it was demolished around 1194 by Muhammad Ghori.

The temple was rebuilt, but in 1447 it was once again destroyed by Sultan Mahmud Shah of Jaunpur. After this, it was built by Pandit Narayan Bhatt with the help of Raja Todar Mal in the year 1585. However, in 1632, Shah Jahan sent an army to destroy the building. The army, however, was unable to achieve its objective because of Hindu opposition.

Again during a Mughal assault, this historic temple was demolished by the Mughal king Aurangzeb in 1669, and a mosque was built at this place. Since then, Gyanvapi Mosque and Kashi Vishwanath Temple have stood adjacent to each other. Saqi Mustad Khan, an author of that time, mentioned the destruction of the Kashi Vishwanath Temple in his book Maasir-I-'Alamgiri. It is written in this book that on 2nd September 1669, Aurangzeb got the news of the destruction of the Kashi Vishwanath Temple. It is said that when the priest of the temple and his people came to know that Aurangzeb's army was coming to demolish the Kashi Vishwanath temple, then the Jyotirlinga of Lord Shiva was kept hidden in a well inside the temple.

The most recent construction of Kashi Vishwanath Temple, which still stands today, was built in the eighteenth century by Rani Ahilya Bai Holkar, the queen of Indore. Once Lord Shiva came in the dream of Rani Ahilya Bai Holkar. Then she decided that she should rebuild Kashi Vishwanath Temple, and in 1777 the Kashi Vishwanath temple, which we see today, was reconstructed. King of Punjab Maharaja Ranjit Singh rebuilt this temple in 1835 with 1000 kg of gold; that is why this temple is also called Golden Temple. From the 11th century to the 18th century, the construction and demolition of the Kashi temple happened.

About Jyotirlinga

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple

Kashi Vishwanath Temple was constructed several times. The Jyotirlinga of Kashi Vishwanath Temple is the most important of the 12 Jyotirlingas. This Jyotirlinga is made of smooth black stone. Shivling is always decorated with flowers and bel leaves. On the day of Mahashivratri, Deepawali, and other important festivals, this temple is decorated with clothes and ornaments. Shiva's vahana Nandi's face should be right in front of Shivling, but it is not so in Kashi Vishwanath Temple, and it is believed that if you come to see Kashi Vishwanath, then you should also visit the temple of Bhairava then only you will get the full result.

Aarti is performed five times a day in the Khasi Vishwanath Temple. The first Aarti takes place from 3 am to 4 am, called Mangala aarti. Mangala Aarti of Kashi Vishwanath is performed first among the 12 Jyotirlingas. 11 Pandits perform Mangala Aarti of Vishwanath in the form of 11 Jyotirlinga. The second Aarti is at noon, which is called Bhog Aarti. The third Aarti takes place at 7 pm, called Sandhya Aarti. The fourth Aarti takes place at 9 pm, called Shringar Aarti. The last and fifth Aarti takes place from 10 o'clock to 10.30 in the night, called Shayan Aarti. The Ganga Aarti at Varanasi is also very popular and looks very beautiful.

The Story behind this temple

There are many stories related to the origin of this temple and the origin of Jyotirlinga inside the temple. One famous Story is that Lord Shiva lived in the Himalayas with his wife, Shalaya Princess Parvati. Parvati requested Lord Shiva one day that she didn't want to live in the Himalayas. Then Lord Shiva started looking for a good place according to the request of Parvati. Then Shiva liked Kashi, the city of King Divodasa. Since then, Kashi became the permanent abode of Lord Shiva.

Another famous story related to establishing this Jyotirlinga and city Kashi has been told in the Kotirudra Samhita of Shiva Purana. According to which once the thought of making one to two came in the mind of Lord Sadasiva, then Sadasiva took the form of pure Shiva, and then the Shiva appeared in two forms, male and female. The male was called Shiva, and the female was called Shakti. Then Shiva and Shakti became invisible and created Prakriti (Nature; the wife of Lord Vishnu) and Purusha (Men; lord Vishnu himself). So after some time, Shiva told Prakriti and Purusha that both of you should do penance to create the best being, but they could not find a proper place to start their penance, so they decided to ask Shiva for help.

Then Shiva built a place called Panchkroshi, and then Shiva gave this place to them to do penance. Panchkroshi was situated between the clouds. Then Shri Hari spent a lot of time praying to Shiva, after which several water springs originated from their body. Due to which the whole cloud was filled with water. When Shri Hari found that the whole cloud was filled with water, he was surprised, and when he shook his head because of surprise, one of the gems fell from his ear, and where this gem fell was called Manikarnika. Today this place is in Varanasi.

When Panchkroshi started drowning due to many water streams, Lord Shiva wore it on his trident. Since then, it is believed that Lord Shiva takes this place on his trident in case of any crisis. Later Vishnu and his wife resided there, and then from the navel of Vishnu, Brahma was born. Then Shiva entrusted Brahma the task of creating the world. Then Shiva thought that if any creature wanted to see him, how would anyone see him? Then Shiva, for the welfare of the people, shifted Panchkroshi city from the cloud to earth, and Shiv himself established the Jyotirlinga in Kashi. So this is the story of Vishweshwar Jyotirlinga. Today Panchkroshi is known as Kashi or Varanasi.

Kashi-Vishwanath Corridor Project

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple

Kashi Vishwanath Temple is surrounded by passageways that are narrow and small. Due to which the people who live here have to face a lot of problems, and it is also very hard to manage pilgrims or huge crowds who come to Kashi to worship Kashi Vishwanath due to congested lanes, especially in any festival session.

The foundation stone for the Kashi Vishwanath Corridor was laid by Prime Minister Modi in March 2019. The holy shrine and the surrounding areas will be renovated substantially in this project. Before this, Rani Ahilyabai Holkar had done renovation on such a big level.

  • The main aim of this project is to connect the historic Kashi Vishwanath temple with the Ganga ghats. The 50 feet long corridor connects the Kashi Vishwanath temple directly to the Manikarnika Ghat and Lalita Ghat of the Ganges.
  • Under this project, approximately an area of 5 lakh square feet will be renovated, along with 63 temples. Apart from all these things, the pilgrims or travelers who come here will also see the new museum and the ancient civilization of Kashi.
  • The first phase of the project, which Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated on 13th December 2021, costs ₹339 crores to construct. The first phase consists of 23 buildings that cover a total area of about 5 lakh square feet. It will cost around ₹800 crores for the entire project, funded by the state government. To implement the grand plan, more than 300 properties have been acquired. The state government will give money to the house owners in return for removing 300 buildings for the project.

How to Reach

It is possible to reach Varanasi from all major Indian cities. The options to reach Varanasi are many like by air, road, and train. There is a direct flight from all major Indian cities to Varanasi. To get to Varanasi by air, one must take a ticket for Lal Bahadur Shastri Airport, also known as Varanasi Airport or Babatpur Airport, approximately 20 kilometers away from Varanasi city, which is the closest airport to reach Varanasi by air. All the major cities of India are also connected to Varanasi by road and railway route. Moreover, in Varanasi, there are many hotels where pilgrims can stay, so there are no problems with accommodations in Varanasi.


At the time of Mahashivratri, people from many places come to Kashi to visit Kashi Vishwanath. People from all over the world come here to worship Mahadev. It is believed that Holocaust will not be able to destroy the city of Kashi because if something like this happens, then Lord Shiva will wear the city of Kashi on his trident. Great people like Swami Vivekananda, Swami Dayanand Saraswati, Goswami Tulsidas have visited this temple. This is not the only temple; there are many ancient temples in this city and in Asia, but it is believed that Kashi Vishwanath Temple is the most ancient temple among all.

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