Adinath Temple, located on the summit of the Mainak Hill on Maheshkhali Island off the coast of Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, is dedicated to the Hindu God, Shiva, who is worshipped as Adinath. The temple is famous for the annual fair held at the foot of the Mainak Hill in the month of Phalgun as per the Bengali calendar.
Legend and Stories
A top Mainak Hill in Little Moheshkhali Union, with sweeping views across the interior, the channel and mainland, SreeSreeAdinath Temple has attracted pilgrims for centuries. It is said to be the site where Ravan, primary antagonist of the Ramayana, set down a sacred Shiva Linga stone he had promised Lord Shiva to carry uninterrupted from Kailash to Lanka in return for being granted immortality. In Moheshkhali efforts failed him and the Shiva Linga remained there. But the story of the temples beginning is not the origin of the connection with Nepal. Rather it stems from the experience of a solvent Moheshkhali Muslim named Noor Mohammad Shikdar. Trouble began when one of Shikdar's cows suddenly stopped giving milk. At first he blamed his cowherd who in turn sought to discover the cause of the matter. The cowherd watched the cow one night, to find that during the dark hours it left the barn and made its way to the Shiva Linga where milk began to instantaneously flow over the black stone. Only when the flow of milk stopped did the cow return to the cowshed. Shikdar did not, however, believe the cowherd's narration of events; until he had a dream to tell Moheshkhali's Hindu zamindar landlord to build a temple at the site. In a subsequent dream, in 1612, Shikdar was ordered to steal a protima statue of Lord Shiva from the Nepal State Temple to place on Mainak Hill. To complete the task he assigned one Naga Sannyasi who was, unfortunately, caught in the act. On the night before his trial however, the Sannyasi found favour with Lord Shiva who appeared before him, advising that he simply tell the truth and answer the judge's trial questions calmly.
On the following day the judge asked the colour of the protima. While the King of Nepal replied that the statue was a touchstone colour, the Sannyasi said it was white. As the latter answer was correct, it was understood the Sannyasi had divine blessing in his task. As such, the Nepalese king asked forgiveness and on his own initiative arranged for the protima to be brought to Mainak and with due honour.
Bangladesh can be reached by air from any part of the world. You can take a direct flight into Dhaka, the capital city, from 27 major cities in the world. There are no direct trains that can get you to Bangladesh from any neighbouring country. One can also drive into Bangladesh from India from Benapol and Chilihati.
Devotees visit this temple to seek fulfillment of the following:-
- Relief from diseases
- Purchase of vehicles
- Gain Knowledge
Kailaasarana Shiva Chandramouli Phaneendra Maathaa Mukutee Zalaalee Kaarunya Sindhu Bhava Dukha Haaree Thujaveena Shambho Maja Kona Taaree
Meaning -Oh Lord Shiva who is seated on Mount Kailash, where the moon decorates his forehead and the king of serpents crown his head, who is merciful and removes delusion, You alone can protect me. I surrender to thee.
Aum Trayambakam Yajaamahey Sugandhim Pusti Vardhanam Urvaarukamiva Bandhanaath Mrutyor Muksheeya Maamritaat
Meaning -We worship the fragrant Lord Shiva, who has 3 eyes and who cultivates all beings. May He free me from death, for immortality, as even a cucumber is separated from its bond with the vine.
Morning 6 AM to Evening 9 PM