Farooq Abdullah once again pushes the fake claim that a Muslim man spotted Shiva Lingam in the ancient Amarnath cave, here is how he is categorically wrong

The holy Amarnath cave.

Farooq Abdullah, President of the Jammu and Kashmir National Conference, has once again pushed the myth of the Amarnath caves being discovered by a Muslim named Buta Malik. In light of the recent incidents of street violence by Muslims, Abdullah stated that no Muslim has ever raised a finger against any faith and that it was a Muslim who unearthed the Shivling in the Amarnath cave.

Several individuals rebuked Farooq Abdullah for his words, and he was reminded again that the story he is narrating is a fabricated story from the realm of fiction. Users highlighted that the Amarnath cave is a pilgrimage site that has been known for ages.

Journalist Aditya Raj Kaul wrote, “Stop spreading fake news, Farooq Abdullah. Read history. Amarnath cave has ancient origins. Read Neelmat Puran, Rajatarangini. Read your class teacher and my great grandfather Master Samsar Chand Kaul’s – The Mysterious Cave of Amarnath. It’s several centuries old pilgrimage.”

The fabricated myth of the discovery of the Amarnath caves by a Muslim can be easily debunked with a few internet searches. Numerous ancient texts have described this pilgrimage, proving it to be an old custom that has remained undisturbed until today.

The Amarnath cave

The Amarnath cave is a Hindu shrine in Jammu and Kashmir and is an important site of Sanatan Dharma. The cave is located in Lidder Valley and is surrounded by glaciers and mountains most of the year, except for a brief period in summer when it can be visited by pilgrims. The yatra is currently underway.

The Shiva Lingam inside the cave is a stalagmite formation that is formed when water drops fall from the cave’s roof onto the floor and freeze, resulting in an upward vertical development of the Lingam.

The pilgrimage to the Amarnath caves is an ancient custom mentioned in Kalhana’s Rajtaringini, Nilamata Purana, Francois Bernier’s memoirs, and many others. The references in the aforementioned writings demonstrate that the ancient custom is both religious and cultural in nature.

Rishi Bhrigu, according to Hindu epics, was the first to explore the Amarnath cave. It is said that the Valley of Kashmir was immersed underwater centuries ago, and Rishi Kashyapa drained it through a succession of rivers and tributaries. As the water receded, Rishi Bhrigu was the first to encounter Lord Shiva in the Amarnath cave.

The Amarnath cave is also referenced in the Nilmata Purana, an old Kashmiri work that provides information about its history, geography, religion, and folklore around it, and was composed during the sixth and eighth centuries AD. it mentions, “One is honoured in the world of Rudra by seeing the mountain Mahadeva after having a plunge in the Mahuri in front of Tripuresa.”

“By bathing at Amaresa, a man may get the merit(gift of) a hundred cows…,” Nilmata Purana further mentions. The Amaresa mentioned in the Nilmata Purana refers to Amareshwar. Amareshwar is another name for Amarnath. While explaining the splendour of numerous Shiva pilgrimages in Skanda Purana’s ‘Maheshwarkhand Arunachal Mahatmya Khand,’ Amresh Tirtha is described to be the epitome of human pursuit, where Mahadev and Parvati dwell.

Even in Kalhana’s Rajatarangini, a book on ancient Kashmiri history, it is mentioned that the Kashmiri kings visited the sacred Shrine of Amarnath on a regular basis. Rajatarangini was written in the 12th century AD, much before the story of Buta Malik was peddled. In Book II v. 138, Kalhana says that King Samdhimat Aryaraja (34 BCE-17CE) used to spend “the most delightful Kashmir summer” worshipping a Linga formed of snow in the regions above the forests. This appears to be a reference to the Shiva Lingam at Amarnath. There is yet another reference to Amareshwara or Amarnath in the Rajatarangini (Book VII v.183). According to Kalhana, Queen Suryamati, the wife of King Ananta (1028-1063), granted under her husband’s name agraharas at Amareshwara and arranged for the consecration of Trishulas, Banalingas, and other sacred emblems.

Returning to contemporary history, Godfrey Thomas Vigne, a British tourist, visited the holy Caves in 1842 and published a thorough chapter about it in his book. In 1842, he wrote about the Amarnath Yatra and its complete route. He narrated, “A stream descends from it to Palgam, and there joins the Lidur, which comes rattling down the larger valley on the right, at the end of which are seen the snowy mountains on the way to Umur Nath.”

Source: TFI Media

There are numerous additional references that may be used to learn about the cultural and religious significance of Amarnath cave and its presence as a pilgrimage since time immemorial. Pilgrimages to the Amarnath caves are as old as time. It has withstood nature’s fury, the medieval Islamic tyranny, and terrorists in independent India thanks to the sheer determination of Hindus who, despite all odds, ascend those peaks and pray to Mahadeva.

OpIndia Staff: Staff reporter at OpIndia