The HOLY DHAAM “Damodar Kund” (lake) is situated under a rain shadow of High Himalayas north of Annapurna range. The elevation of the Damodar Kund is approximately 4890 meters . Being at a great altitude the area is too cold and windy place. The Damodar lakes are located three days walk north east of the main Mustang trekking route & very close to Tibetan border and Mukthinath . However nowadays as per the locals there is a mote able road also .
En route we can have darshanam of Saligrama kshetra (Muktinath) which is situated at a height of 3,800 metres . Jomsom airport is at 2713 metres. The distance to Muktinath from Jomsom by walk is 21 kms (via Kagbeni) Another short-cut which involves climbing of a steep mountain that would save about 3-4 kms. Presently Jeeps and motorbikes are operated for easy travel of the piligrims . To reach Muktinath, we need to cross 3 settlements- Eklabhatti, Khinga, Jharkot (Earlier, piligrims used to go toMuktinath via Eklabhatti, Kagbeni, Jharkot).
Gandaki and not the Mukthinath temple.
Few also claim Its Damodar kund .
River Kaligandaki has its source in Damodar Kund and throughout its flow to south right up to Indian border carries a manifestation of lying lord Vishnu with Damodarkund jeweled as His auspicious Head and with Muktinath as the mouth, Shaligram Chakra as chest Kuru Kshetra as the waist, Devaghatam as the Knee and lastly the auspicious feet of lord Vishnu goes to the credit of Gajendra Moksha devadham,. Such a beautiful elaboration of the lord, one may find starting from the auspicious lakes of Damodar Kund. The Damodar Kunda (lake) is situated rain shadow of High Himalayas north of Annapurna range.
According to another version, the Mukthinath temple is very much the Divya Desam of Salagramam. It is difficult to establish which of the two versions is right. Either way, there is no question that our Thirumangai Azhwar visited atleast the banks of the Gandaki River, as did Swamy Ramanuja. And no matter which version is accurate, there is no taking away from the beauty of this Divya Desam and its surroundings.
Thirumangai AzhwAr and PeriyAzhwAr had glorified this divya desam with 12 Paasurams. Thirumanagai AzhwAr visualizes the Great Lord here as RaamAvathAran and KrishNAvathAran. PeriyAzhwAr’s experiences Lord as Baala KrishNan and His play among the Gopikas. In one of Azhwar’s P asurams , Thirumangai Azhwar counsels His mind to hurry up and reach this divine SaaLigrama KashEthram to worship the Lord there as Lord Raama- and Lord KrishNa avathAra Moorthy. Azhwar’s description of the beauty of nature at this dhivya dEsam are so attractive that one will crave to have HIS darshan . AzhwAr appeals to His mind politely..
“KaayAmalar VaNNan SaaLagrAmamadia nenjE”
(Oh My mind! Please travel to the SaaLigrAma KshEthram of the Lord with the dark-bluish hue of KaayAmpoo! “
Manam kamazhum tadam soozhnthu yengum azhahAya SaaLagramamadai nenjE!”
Oh My mind! Please hurry up and get to the SaaLagrama KshEthram of the Lord known for its pretty groves filled with fragrant flowers !…………………..
AzhwAr exhorts his mind to attain the Lord of Salagrama who, armed with bow and arrow, crossed forests inhabited by wild deer, elephants and horses, and then built a bridge of boulders to reach the high-walled fortress of Lanka and severed the ten heads of Ravana- the king of the RakshasAs glorifying LORD RAMAs avataram .
Adiyens very close devotee brother Sri Thiruvenkada ramanujadasan ( Mouni baba) had been to Damodar kund twice . He was kind enough to share the pics .
SRIDEVI BHOODEVI SAMETHA SREE MOORTHY PARABRAHMANEY NAMAH :
Adiyen’s travelogue to Mukthinath Divyadesam is available in the below link
SALIGRAMA DIVYA DESAM ANUBHAVAM
Adiyen Ramanuja dasan