Located in Gujarat, Palitana is perched at the foothills of Shatrunjaya Hill. Palitana is a little town that has gained importance as being one of the most sacred tirth (pilgrimage) for Jains with about 900 temples. Shri Adishwara Temple in Palitana is a famous pilgrim site.
Palitana Adishwara temple that crowns the hill of Palitana is dedicated to Lord Aadeshwar (Rishabdev). The holy temple nestled at the hill top is spread over a vast area and incorporates within its premises about 108 smaller temples of the 108 Gods according to the beliefs of Jainism. Shri Adishwara, Palitana features among one of the popular tourist attractions in Palitana.
Description of Shri Adishwara, Palitana
Devotees visiting the famous Adishwara Temple in Palitana desire to climb to the mountain-top at least once in their lifetime, because of the holiness associated with the temple. The journey is exhausting. The walk up the stone stairways comprising of around 4000 steps takes about an hour and a half. Dolis are available those who prefer to avoid the steps. Dolis are held by two men at both ends of a stick in the middle of which are a base to sit on. Food is avoided or carried on the way. The journey must begin prior to the sunset as no one can stay atop during the night.
Adishwara temple, Palitana has many beliefs associated to the temple monuments. One such belief states that if you manage to squeeze yourself through an exceptionally small opening in a particular room, you are regarded to be a person without any sins. Before setting your foot down to leave, don't miss out to pamper your taste buds with masala dahi.
Climbing up the hill of the Palitana Adishwara temple successfully and returning with the blessings of Lord Aadeshwar is believed to be a great reverence and a matter of pride. It is seen that at various stretches while getting down many people wash the feet of the devotees and apply a tilak (vermilion) on their head. And some others give out sweets to all. It is believed that by doing this deed they mean to suggest and indicate that 'please make us a part of the good deed you have done by worshipping the holy temple.