In the Mahabharata, it is said that ….one that performs fasting, prayers and yajna at Naimisharanya…absolves from sins and finds great happiness in the world. Yet, Naimisharanya remains shrouded with mystery and mysticism and few people know its great history and religious significance.
Significance of Naimisharanya
Located in Sitapur district of Uttar Pradesh, 90 km ahead of the state capital Lucknow, Naimisharanya is a celebrated abode of Lord Vishnu. In fact, mythology links the land’s sacred connections with all the 33 crore Hindu Gods and Goddesses. Foremost among the sacred sites of Hindus, performing penances for twelve years in this soul is said to transport a soul to Brahmaloka itself. This exotic pilgrimage site nestles upon the serene banks of River Gomti, a tributary of Ganga.
Myths of Naimisharanya
It is held in awe by theologises and also followers of Hinduism as it’s believed to be Vishnu’s chosen land. Vishnu has many names out of which one is called “Animisha or “one who is always awake, vigilant and alert”.
Another name for Naimisharanya is Nemi basically means the outer surface of the chakra. The place where Nemi part of the chakra fell automatically gets known as the Chakra Tirtha. A Chakra Tirtha always has a sacred bathing place that is shaped in the form of a chakra. The surrounding forests are believed to possess sacred mystical powers and they are known as Naimisharanya. Mythology says that the God Vishnu had vanquished several malevolent demons here in a Nimisha or one second (the time it takes to blink)…
Historical Tales of Naimisharanya
Naimisharanya is said to have come into existence when the universe originated. The saints and wise men of that age had divine revelations of that day. And the streams of divine knowledge reached down to successive generations. In Satya Yuga or the Age of the truth, Naimisharanya was a popular place of pilgrimage and it is the first pilgrimage site that was defined on earth.
The 8th Aranya is Naimisharanya and it is also called the Asthma Vaikunta. Historically, 33 crore gods, 3.5 crore temples and 88,000 wise men reside in Naimisharanya. This is, therefore, a land of sacred land where every good deed brings back desired results and pious fruits. The land of Naimisharanya has existed forever and will exist forever and possesses a deep meaning that is beyond the scope of ordinary words.
In the sacred sphere of Naimisharanya, there are many important historical sites that can teach humans the virtues of living a sin free life with focus on the almighty. Per Bhagavata Purana there is no sacred place on earth that can compare to Naimisharanya.
It is also believed that the Brahma Manav chakra struck the planet earth at Naimisharanya and that is how it came to be known as chakra Tirtha. Swayambhuva Manu and his companion Shatarupa performed Yagnas and worship for 23000 years for receiving Narayana as their son. Lore about Naimisharanya runs that the saint Dadhichi donated his spine to the gods at Naimisharanya and his bones were made into weapons that could conquer evil.