World’s most sacred mountains
Since ancient times, mountains have played an important role, and many have become more important because of religious significance attached to them. These peaks now serve as the site of pilgrimages. If you browse through history, you will find how these peaks also formed a primary part of many of the world’s religions. If you are curious to know about these peaks, here are five of the world’s most sacred mountains.
Nanda Devi, India
Nanda Devi is the second highest mountain in India, and sits at 7816 m and is part of the Garhwal Himalayas in the state of Uttarakhand. The peak is known for its religious significance and its delicate ecosystem. The name Nanda Devi translates to The Goddess which gives Bliss, and the Nanda Devi National Park which surrounds it was declared a UNESCO world heritage site in 1988. The said trek is one of the popular treks in the Garhwal Himalayan region that takes one to the abode of sacred Goddess Nanda Devi, the reason why the spot is one of the world’s sacred mountains.
Mount Fuji, Japan
Sitting at a height of 3776 m, Mount Fuji is not only the highest mountain, but also the most sacred mountain in Japan. This snow capped mountain is considered sacred in both Buddhism and Shintoism, and since it’s also an active volcano, the mountain has been venerated as the home of a fire god, a Shinto goddess, and Dainichi Nyorai, the Great Sun Buddha. While it is referred to as an embodiment of the very spirit of nature by Shintoists, the Japanese Buddhists revere the mountain as a gateway to another world. In the summer, it is the scene of thousands of pilgrims climbing to the summit.
Mount Agung, Bali
Mount Agung holds great importance for the Balinese, which rises at a height of 10308 ft high in eastern Bali. The Mother Temple of Besakih, which is the holiest and the largest holiest temple in Bali, sits comfortably at 3000 ft up its slopes. Although this peak is known for threatening volcanic activity, which might wipe out most parts of the island, it’s still the culture’s most sacred mountain.
Mount Sinai, Egypt
Situated in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt, Mount Sinai sits comfortably at 2285 m, and it would have been just an unremarkable mountain if religious significance would not have been attached to it. People believe that this is the mountain where God spoke to Moses, and it’s the spot where he gave him the 10 Commandments. And this belief has been pulling pilgrims for over a thousand years, and there are no signs yet of this slowing down.
Mount Kailash, Tibet/China
Mount Kailash is one of the world’s most sacred mountains, most parts of which are still inaccessible. As per the Hindu and Buddhist scriptures, Mount Kailash is the physical embodiment of Mount Meru, which has ancient caves and monasteries, which can be seen by only a few fortunate ones. Considered sacred in Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism, the peak has been engulfed in the myths of ancient Asia for many years. While this peak is believed to be an abode of Lord Shiva by Hindus, other religions also believe that their important religious figures also visited it.