OM MANI PADME HUM
ANNAPURNA CIRCUIT BASECAMP TREKKING
Pokhara - Tatopani - Kagbeni - Jomson - Muktinath
Śrī Muktināth Thīrthayātrī Sant Sevāśram
Muktināth Area - Jwala Mai Temple (Dhola Mebar Gompa)
Jwala Mai (lit. goddess of fire) is the temple of the eternal flame, wich is located inside the Tibetan style Dhola Mebar Gompa, situated to the east of the main Muktinath temple. It is built above an underground water stream, and small natural gas jets underneath the gompa produce continuously burning flames on top of the water.
It is here that one can find the eternal burning flames of natural gas, or as the Buddhists say: Sale Mebar (burning soil); Do Mebar (burning stone) and Kla Mebar (burning water). The holy flame alongside a spring, in combination with earth, water, fire and air, seems to be the origin of the religious significance of Muktinath, becauese only here all the elements are present in one spot. Take your shoes oft before entering the temple. For a small donation the nun will light a butter lamp for your safe return trek.
The small burning flames are hidden in the Gompa on the floor, behind a grid. One wouldn't notice them, if not shown by someone. One has to kneel down on the floor with forehead almost touching the ground to see the small blue flame (behind a grid) that has been burning here for thousands of years. Pilgrims have been coming here for more than 3000 years to witness this natural combination of earth, water, fire and air at one spot.
Inside the Dhola Mebar Gompa, the main statues of Manjushri, Avalokiteshvara and Vajrapani are seen. Below the statues (on the floor) is the eternal holy flame. To see the tiny blue colored flames you have to look down and you see two small windows. You might have to kneel and crane your neck for looking throgh the grid window. In the second one, on hearing carefully you would hear the gurgle of water.
Mukhtinath Dhola Mebar Gompa - Jwala Mai Temple water-spout
Dhola Mebar Gompa, or Jwalamai (Goddess of Fire) Temple, where a holy flame of natural gas burns behind a grill just above a spring, whose sacred water pours through a cow’s head spout.
The spring water from inside the Jwala Mai temple (Dhola Mebar Gompa), rushing outside through a water-spout.
The taste of the water is sweet and cooling.