Pilgrims Hug Kailash Shiva Lingam To Death

Hindu pilgrims who hugged a sacred phallic ice form in Indian Kashmir may have caused it to melt, experts say.

“Hugging and touching the stalagmite definitely generates heat and can lead to its melting,” said Mohammed Ismail, the head of the geology department at the University of Kashmir.

Hundreds of thousands of devotees make the gruelling trek to the Himalayan Kashmir mountains each year to gaze at the ice formation, which occurs annually and is worshipped as a symbol of Shiva, the god of destruction.

But by Monday, just the second day of the two-month pilgrimage, devotees only had a tiny stump of ice to look at compared to the towering form a few weeks earlier.

Officials had said global warming might be to blame for the formation’s disappearance, before adding that irresponsible actions by pilgrims visiting the cave shrine before it officially opened could be responsible.[link]