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Shikharji or Sametshikhar also known as the Parasnath Hill

Shikharji or Sametshikhar also known as the Parasnath Hill, located in Giridih district in Jharkhand, India, is a major Jain pilgrimage destination and is the most sacred place for Jains in the world. According to Jain belief, twenty of the twenty-four Tirthankaras (teachers of the Jains) attained Moksha (Nirvana) from this place. Parasnath Hill with a height of 1,350 metres (4,430 ft)) make up the highest mountain in the state of Jharkhand.

Shri Sammed Shikharji attracts pilgrims from across India.

The number of Tirthankars who attained nirvana at Shri Sammet Shikharji is 20. For each of them there is a shrine on the hill.

The hill is also known as Parasnath, a name derived from Parshva, the 23rd Tirthankara who attained Nirvana there. His present temple is not very old, although the idol in the main temple is ancient. The Sanskrit inscriptions at the foot of the images indicate that they were put in the temple in 1678 A.D.

Archaeologists believe some of the existing temple edifices on Parasnath Hill date from 1765 A.D. although the place is of greater antiquity. It is certain that the present edifices replace older edifices, which were demolished. Jain temples are often pulled down and re-built.

Each tirtha (pilgrimage site) represents centuries of devotion, which found expression in temple-building, and to this day are at the centre of pilgrimages and festivals at frequent intervals. Although many of the temples may seem complicated in appearance, each is designed on the principles common to the religious architecture of the late medieval period, the elaborations being due to such factors as the addition of supplementary shrines, second stories, and adding pillared cloisters around all the larger examples. One variation unique to Jain temples is the frequent production of a class of temple known as chaumukh, or four-faced.

There is a Temple of Bhomiyaji at the start of the Hills (Termed as Taleti) and it is said that once you bow your head at this temple and start the journey towards the top of the hill, there is no way you can be mislead in the journey. The moment you forget the way, there will be Dogs who will guide you the way and will soon disappear fast once you are back on track.

Tirthankaras attaining Nirvana at Shri Sammed Shikharji

Shri Ajitnath Ji
Shri Sambhavanath Ji
Shri Abhinandannath Ji
Shri Sumatinath Ji
Shri Padmaprabha Ji
Shri Suparshvanath Ji
Shri Chandraprabha Ji
Shri Suvidhinath Ji
Shri Sheetalnath Ji
Shri Shreyansanath Ji
Shri Vimalnath Ji
Shri Anantnath Ji
Shri Dharmanath Ji
Shri Shantinath Ji
Shri Kunthunath Ji
Shri Aranath Ji
Shri Mallinath Ji
Shri Munisuvrata Ji
Shri Naminatha ji
Shri Parshva Ji
One can also pay a visit to Palganj Ji, which is just 12 km away from Madhuban (place from where this journey begins). This temple has a sculpture of Shri Parasnath Bhagwan which was from 4th Century, also the priest of the temple narrates story about this temple which is worth to listen.

Shikharji temples

Following are temples at Shikharji. The actual temples are not numbered; hence there may be minor differences in the numbering of temples in various guidebooks and literature. The following numbering is based on the guidance provided by the local Shikharji resident supervisor.

Shri Gautam Swami (Ghandhar)
Shri Kunthunath Prabhu (17th Tirthankar)
Shashvat Jin Shri Rishbhanan Prabhu
Shashvat Jin Chandranan Prahbu
Shri Naminath Prabhu (21st Tirthankar)
Shri Arnath Prahbu (18th Tirthankar)
Shri Mallinath Prabhu (19th Tirthankar)
Shri Shreyansnath Prabhu (11th Tirthankar)
Shri Suvidhinath Prabhu (9th Tirthankar)
Shri Padam Prabhu (6th Tirthankar)
Shri Munisuvrat Prabhu (20th Tirthankar)
Shri Chandrah Prabhu (8th Tirthankar)
Shri Adinath Prabhu (1st Tirthankar)
Shri Anantnath Prabhu (14th Tirthankar)
Shri Sheetalnath Prabhu (10th Tirthankar)
Shri Sambhavnath Prabhu ( 3rd Tirthankar)
Shri Vasupujya Prabhu (12th Tirthankar)
Shri Abhinandan Prabhu ( 4th Tirthankar)
Shri Shubh Swami Ghandhar
Jal Mandir
Shri Dharamnath Prabhu (15th Tirthankar)
ShashvatJin Shri Vardhman Prabhu
ShashvatJin Shri Varishen Prabhu
Shri Sumatinath Prabhu (5th Tirthankar)
Shri Shantinath Prabhu (16th Tirthankar)
Shri Mahavir Prabhu (24th Tirthankar)
Shri SuParshavnath Prabhu (7th Tirthankar)
Shri Vimalnath Prabhu (13th Tirthankar)
Shri Ajitnath Prabhu (2nd Tirthankar)
Shri Neminath Prabhu (22nd Tirthankar)
Shri Parshavnath Prabhu (23rd Tirthankar)

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