Budhanilikantha is situated some 9 km north of Kathmandu's center. Revered as an emination
of Avalokikiteshwara by Newar Buddhists, and by Hinduists as
Narayana, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu lying on a bed of naga
spirits or snakes on the foot of Shivapuri Hills.
stone sculpture was fashioned by King Vishnugupta in the 7th century. In his four hands the deity
holds the four attributes: a discus (symbol of the mind) a mace (primeval
knowledge), a conch shell (the five elements), and a lotus seed (symbolizing
the universe). A priest washes the face of the deity every morning. Since
the time of King Pratap Malla in the 17th
century, who dreamt that his successors
would die if they were visit the statue, no Nepali king has ventured into
its presence. The Budhanilikantha festival in November celebrates the deity
waking from his monsoon repose.
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