Hari Parvat situated at the periphery
of Srinagar city is an ancient and one of the holiest places
of Kashmir. It is the abode of Mahashakti-the Divine Mother
Jagatamba Sharika Bhagwati, also known as Maha Tripursundhari
or Rajrajeshwari (locally called as harie). The eighteen armed
Goddess Sharika is regarded as the Presiding Deity (Isht -
Devi) of Srinagar city. The Godess Sharika is represented
by a Sayambhu’ Shrichakra (Mahamaha Shrichakra), also
called Mahashriyantra, which consists of circular mystic impressions
and triangular patterns with a dot (bindhu) at the Centre.
The mystic Shrichakra engraved on a vertical holy rock (Shila)
is located at the middle of western face of Hari Parvat. The
shrine can be approached from Deviangan by a flight of chiseled
stones, numbering one hundred and eight. The number one hundred
and eight has mystical signficance in Hindu mythology. It
is perhaps due to the Goddess Shrichakra that the capital
city of Kashmir is said to have derived its name of Srinagar
As per the ‘Visishtadhvaita’ doctrine,
‘Shri’ is the Divine consort of of the Lord and is said
to play on intermediatory role between God and the human soul.
The Shrine of Chakrishwar has been a place of worship
from the day, the Goddess Sharika manifested Herself in the form
of a ‘Shila’ on the Hari-Parbat.
To worship the Supreme Godess, the devotees used
to go to Hari
Parbat regularly and reach the Shrine of Chakrishwar to be at
the holy feet of the Divine Mother in the wee hours of the morning.
Phagun Krishna Paksh Ashtami (Hora Ashtami) and Ashad Shukla Paksh
Saptami, Ashtami and Navami (Har Satum, Har Aatham and Har Navum)
are the auspicious days for the devotional congregational prayers
at the Sharika-peeth Chakrishwar.
Ashad Navami (Har Navum) is said to be the Birthday
of Sha-rika Bhagwati. On this day of Sharika Jayanti the devotees
make sacrificial offering of ‘Teher-charvan’ (rice boiled
with turmeric po-wder and mixed with oil and salt and cooked liver
of goat) to the Supreme Goddess. This ritual is locally known as
‘Chout Kharoun’. On ‘Navreh’ (The new Year
Day of Kashmiri Pandits, during the month of Magh and ‘ ‘Navratra’,
the devotees regularly visit the Hari Parvat for special prayers
Shree Yantra or Shree Chakra
Shree Yantra is considered one of the most auspicious, important
and powerful Yantras which not only gives the maximum benefit, but
also proves beneficial for almost everybody. While this Yantra has
been used as a source of attaining all worldly desires and wishes,
the Yogis, saints and spiritual personalities, by virtue of their
devotion, have used it as an instrument to attain the ultimate.
To attain the ultimate, the great spiritual personalities
have always focused their energies on a “ Swayambhu”
Maha Shree Yantra considered to be in the old city of Srinagar,
Kashmir. While in India there are 52 energy centres, but the energy
centre of Hari Parvat Srinagar is considered the only of its kind
in the entire universe which has a great significance in terms of
attaining spiritual bliss.
The word “Shree” means wealth and “Yantra”
an instrument— and it makes the sense of “Instrument
for Wealth”. At Hari Parvat, where the Shree Yantra is considered
to be in the shape of a rock, people have craved for spiritual wealth
and they attained what they wished.
The whole hill of Hari Parvat seems to be the multi-dimensional
figure of geometrical figure of Goddess Sharika and at the corner
of the hill is this magnificent and holy rock and those who have
the eye to look at it can find different geometrical images in the
shape of triangles, squares and pentagons . On gets lost while gazing
at this energy centre as it emits different figures while concentrating
Although most of the lines and shapes are not so
visible due to the “sindoor” coated on it yet those
who can see through, can identify themselves to be a part of this
It was great painter-cum-scholar of Kashmir—
Late Ghulam Rasool Santosh who was benefited by this Yantra in his
art. Those who have gone through his art work, could see how Santosh
painted Shree Yantra in his master-pieces in a bid to reach near
to the ultimate.
Santosh could not carry forward his dream of deciphering
all those geometrical figures emitting from this holy rock and kits
sorroundings. There were many reasons for that.
After the mass migration of Hindus from the valley
in 1990, this place is presently a little in a state of neglect
although visited by people in one or two once in a blue moon. This
author had an opportunity to visit this foundation rock of Kashmiri
Pandits in recent past only to see some security personnel guarding
it. Those on the guard had high regard for the place but were unaware
of the importance of this Shila of Sharika— the Maha Shree
Yantra. The security personnel posted at this place said that there
exists a committee and it members visit quite often this place and
also arrange religious functions. They, however, regretted that
under the present circumstances, when Kashmir is in turmoil, this
place is by and large ignored in terms of visit by devotees and
An elderly Muslim recalled those golden days when
the Kashmiri Pandits in thousands would visit this holy place every
day. The youngsters had no knowledge of this Yantra. A youth wondered
how a person by name of Ghulam Rasool (Santosh) was obsessed with
this rock and place.
This Shree Yantra has a great significance for
Hindu community. Those who have its knowledge, categorize it in
two forms— Evolution Yantra of Samyachar Order of Kashmir
and Involution Yantra of Koulahar order of Kashmir.
There are nine folds of Shri Yantra— Outer
three circles that depict the Chakra ruling the three worlds; Sixteen
petals depicting 16 Yoginies associated with the attainment of desires;
Eight petals— depicting power of speech, holding, walking,
excreting, pleasure, abandoning, concentration and detachment; Fourteen
triangles describing all good fortune and associated with chief
nadis or currents of bio-energy; Ten outer triangles depicting Yognies
of 10 vital breaths; Inner ten triangles depicting Shakties of 10
vital fires; Eight triangles depict powers that rule cold, heat,
happiness, sorrow, desire and three gunas— Sativas, Rajas
and Tamas; Central Triangle depicts Chakra giving all success and
Bindu depicting Maha Tripura Sundari— the ultimate.
According to Kamlesh Tufchi, member Satisar Foundation,
the entire hillock of Hari Parvat is a great Yantra. While Yantras
are normally two dimensional, this Yantra is a three- dimensional
and that is why it holds great spiritual importance, Tufchi said.
The concept of three-dimensional Yantra is also vived by this rare
picture that was clicked by the author on his recent visit.
This foundation rock of Kashmiri Pandits has withstood
the evil and bad times. It is witness to number of occasions when
Kashmiri Pandits had to migrate from the valley. It is also witness
to the fact that Kashmiri Pandits have firm belief and faith in
this energy centre, the description of which is in Nilmatpuran and
.Earlier, the Birthday of Jagat Amba Sharika Bhagwati
used to be celebrated by performing a ‘Mahachandi Yagna’,
which would commence on Ashad Saptami (Hari Satum) and culminate
on Ashad Shukla Paks Navami (Har Navum) with a sacrificial offering
of a lamb called ‘Raze-Kath’. Presently ‘Har-Naum’,
the holy birhtday festival of the Goddess Sharika is celebrated
at Chakrishwas Shrine with a night long singing of hymns and bhajans
in the praise of the Goddess.
Some of the devotees prefer to do parikarma for
the complete month of Magh right from the Lord Ganisha’s temple),
passing through Devi-angan right upto Kathi-Darwaza. A legend from
‘Sharika Mahatmya’ records that inorder to save and
free the residents of the valley (Satidesh) from the evil deeds
of the demon, the Mother Goddess Ashatadushbuja Jagatamba Durga
took the form of a bird (Haer in Kashmiri) On the day of Ashad Shukla
Paksh Navami (Har Navum), it is believed to have carried a celestial
pebble in its beak and dropped it on the demon to crush it to death.
A miracle happened and the celestial pabble is
said to have assumed the shape and form of a hillock giving it the
name of Sharika Parbat or Hari Parvat. Subsequently the Goddess
Sharika (represented by the mystic ‘Soyambhu Shrichakra’)
made Her permanent abode on the western face of the hillock (Hari
Parvat) on the vertical rock (Shila) to assure the native people
of Her presence and protection. The whole of Hari Parvat is a hallowed
place. A number of temples and holy temples representing the different
deities are located on its all sides. It is due to this belief that
the devotees undertake a circumambulation of the whole hillock of
Hari Parvat. The parikrama starts from the Lord Ganesh Shrine, which
is located on the south-western corner of Hari Parvat. Inisde the
temple, the deity is represented by a huge ‘shila’ from
Lord Ganesh’s temple, there are two parikarama’ routes;
one along the foot-hill of the hillock and the other along the fortified
stone well, locally known as ‘Kalai’. The devotees have
the option of taking either of the two routes. The next place of
obeisance on parikarama route is the ‘Saptrishi sthapna (Satresh)
which is marked by an open space on the slope of a hillock near
a big boulder in the vicinity of a chinar tree. Here, the devotees
ascertain their luck (locally known as ‘phall’) by random
picking up of some rice grains scattered on the boulder.
Furtheron, the next holy spot on the ‘parikarma’
is the ‘sthapna, of the Goddess Kali, which is marked by a
small temple adjacent to a Chinar tree. Infront of the Kali temple,
a large flat chunk of pond measuring about ten Kanals or so is known
as ‘Sidh-Peeth’-- a place of awekened Divine presence.
The ‘Sidh Peeth’ is said to be invested with strong
divine spiritual vibrations.
Next, on the parikrama route is a vast stretch
of open space known as ‘Devi Angan’- the playfield of
the Cosmic Mother. It is studded with small hutments for the purpose
of worship and meditation. Due to its scenic charm and absorbing
natural beauty, Devi-Anagan is also a place for religious and social
festivities. Next holy spot on parkarama of Hari-Parbat is the ‘sthapna’
of Hari, represented by a rock located on the north eastern face
of the hillock. The devotees after performing pooja here, take a
symbolic ‘round turn’ parkrama infornt of the ‘Shila’
pronouncing loudly the holy words ‘Hari Kartum Yaeri (Mother
Goddess bless me). Infront of Devi-Angon, the two perikarma routes,
one along the fortification wall (Kalai) and the other below the
foothill merge together. Next on the parikarma route, the devotees
pay their obeisance to the Goddess Mahalakshmi a next and opposite
to Mahalakshmi sthapna, on the left side of parikarma route, there
is a temple called ‘Amber Kouls’ mandir, though some
wrongly refer it as Ram Koul’s Mandir.
Next on the parikarma, falls the sthapna of ‘Vamdev’,
which is located on the left side of the parikrama route. ‘Vamdhev’
is regarded as the Divine Consort of the Goddess Reghnya. Earlier,
there existed a stone statue of Lord Vamdev and a small ‘dharamshalla’.
The devotees also perform parkarma here. Pakhribal, the shrine of
the mother Raghnya is the next holy spot on the parikarma route.
It has a holy spring inside the temple complex. A ‘yagnya’
is performed in honour of the Goddess Raghnya especially on Shiklapaksh
Ashatmi’ and other auspicious days. A small Hanuman temple
located on the right side of the foothill is the last holy spot
on the parkrama route. The circumbatation (parikarama) of the Hari-Parbat
ends at ‘Kothi-darwaza’, which is one of the two main
gates of the old township around Hari Parvat, the other being ‘Sangeen-darwaza’
towards Hawal. It is rightly believed that those who worship at
Hari Parvat are deemed to have worshipped all the Gods and Goddesses
of the Hindu mythology.