This book is a guide to the Tirthas, sacred bathing places. Those who know how to perform a snan (ritual bath according to the Hindu precepts) are free to do so. One doesn't see many bathers in the Bagmati around Pashupatinath, even at Shivaratri. On the other hand, the ghats of Gokarnareshwara are used heavily during Gorkarna Aunshi. Just recently, traffic was stalled In Teku, because of all the women going to the ghats there to bathe, on Rishi Panchami. In many places it is possible to stop by the river and sprinkle some water on one's head. It may not seem like much, but this is the Kali Yuga and a little dharma goes a long way. The two basic geo-mythological accounts (Sthala Purana) of the Himalaya and Kathmandu Valleyare the Himvatkhanda and Nepalamahatmya. Both of them trace the origin of the Bagmati (Vagmati) River to Shiva's laughter, although the cause for his laughter in each story is different. Yogi Naraharinath, editor-in-chief of the printed edition of the Himvatkhanda was also a great exponent and champion of Pilgrimage. In the appendix to the Himvatkhanda, can be found a reprint of a booklet on pilgrimage to the sacred bathing places (tirth yatra) along the Bagmati, written by a certain Damodara Paikurel of Naksal. That Sri. Naraharinath saw it fit to be placed in the printed edition edition of the Himvatkhanda, shows what importance he gave to this small tract, and of his desire to preserve it, and foster pilgrimage along the Bagmati.
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