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Location of Joshimath
in Uttarakhand and India
Coordinates 30°34′N 79°34′E / 30.57°N 79.57°E / 30.57; 79.57
Country  India
State Uttarakhand
District(s) Chamoli
Population 132002 (2001)
Time zone IST (UTC+05:30)

Jyotirmath ( ज्योतिर मठ ), also called Jyotir Math and Joshimath( जोशी मठ ), is a city and a municipal board in Chamoli District in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. It is home to one of the four cardinal pīthas established by Adi Shankara.



As of 2001 India census[1], Joshimath had a population of 13,202. Males constitute 61% of the population and females 39%. Joshimath has an average literacy rate of 77%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 83%, and female literacy is 67%. In Joshimath, 12% of the population is under 6 years of age.

The matha

Jyotirmath is the uttarāmnāya matha or northern monastery, one of the four cardinal institutions established by Adi Shankara, the others being those at Sringeri, Puri and Dwaraka. Their heads are titled "Shankaracharya". According to the tradition initiated by Adi Shankara, this matha is in charge of the Atharva Veda.

JyotirMutt Lord Narasimhar Temple

Jyotirmath, which is close to the pilgrimage town of Badrinath, has not always been an active matha. It is sometimes said incorrectly that the original northern matha was established at Badrinath. This place can be a base station for travellers going to Guru Gobind Ghat or the Valley of Flowers National Park.

JyotirMutt established by Adi Sankara

In its most recent history, the Jyotirmath became inactive in the early 19th century. The formal occupation of the matha was restarted with the aid of the heads of some of the other mathas from about 1940 onward. However, there is an unresolved controversy over the succession to the headship of Jyotirmath. The best known of the claimants to be the current head or Shankaracharya is Svarūpānanda Sarasvatī who is also head of the Dwaraka matha. The other two claimants are Vāsudevānanda Sarasvatī and Mādhavāśrama.[2]

Ropeway at Joshimath to Auli, Uttarakhand


External links

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