(‘peak of the gods’)

Places of pilgrimage have exercised enormous influence on the Hindu society. They have contributed not a little, to the preservation of Hindu religion and culture. A river, a mountain, a forest, the seashore or for that matter, any place of natural solitude and beauty—have always attracted the devout and the holy, making them in course of time a regular place of pilgrimage.

Amarakaṇṭaka hill belonging to the Mekala mountain range in the Bilaspur district of Madhya Pradesh is the place of origin of the famous river Narmadā. One of the cities of Bāṇāsura destroyed by the arrow of Lord Śiva is said to have fallen here. Śrāddha performed here is said to yield great results. It is believed that a person committing religious suicide here, by fasting or by jumping into fire or water, after purifying himself through certain vows like that of brahmacarya (celibacy) and ahiṁsā (non-violence), will attain mukti or liberation. Even a visit, especially on the days of lunar and solar eclipses, is highly eulogised.

See also NARMADĀ.