From Devaprayag, Sankara came with his disciple to Srinagar.
(This is not the Srinagar, in Kashmir; it means only Devi's
City). This is the place where there were a lot of Sakti worshippers,
following Sakta marg. They used to give animal and human sacrifices. The king was worried about Sankara's visit. He told
one of the Saktas to debate with Sankara. Sankara debated with
him and advised the Saktas that the Sakti worship is quite good
but should not be taken too far with animal and human sacrifices.
The Saktas understood the purport and started resorting to Sattvic
Sakti worship. They themselves demolished the sacrificial seats,
Bali peetam. Only one Sakta wanted to kill Sankara during night.
Sankara was in deep meditation, in Manonmani Mudra. Sanantana
prayed to Siva and requested the Sakta to abide in Siva, the non-
moving, sattvic state for ever, where Siva and Sakti are in complete
repose. The Sakta prostrated to Sanantana and left.
Sankara and his disciple then came to Rudraprayag, where Siva
sits in meditation without Uma, the latter having gone to Kanchipuram for her own penance. This is the holy place, where Mandakini and
Alaknanda are in confluence. From here, Sankara proceeded to
Karnaprayag, also called Virahi Ganga, where Siva sits without
Sakti. Here Siva is in the form of an Effulgence, Agni rupa and meditates on the other seven forces, five elements and moon and
vaccuum. Uma is doing her tapas, as Aparna, in Kanchipuram. Aparna is one who does not eat even dry leaves for food! Sankara composed here, the famous Siva aparadhamana Stotram, seeking forgiveness of Siva and the famous Sri Dakshinamurty Stotram, where Siva is prayed in eightfold form. He also composed the famous
Siva Panchakshara Stotram and Siva Manasa Puja.
Sankara then went to Jyotir Math area. The king welcomed him
and asked for some teachings for the ordinary citizens in the
place. Sankara wrote many bhakti verses and taught simple path
of devotion to them. Sankara then went to Pandukeswaram and
Naranarayana Parvatam and reached Badrinath. In Badrinath,
he had a darshan of Badrinarayana and visited the Badrikasrama,
the famous cottage of great Sages like Narada. He went into a bhava-samadhi immediately. He had a vision of Badrinarayana, where
the devotion and wisdom got merged totally.
In Badrinath, he found that again the image of Badrinarayana
was not original. He found in his samadhi state, that the original
Badrinarayana image had been stolen and thrown into Naradakuntam in Alaknanda. He dived there and recovered the original image.
He found the image to be slightly damaged. He immersed the image
in Alaknanda and purified it. He still found the image defective
but thought that this is adequate for devotees for full benefits.
He appointed one of the Kerala brahmins who had come to see
him therre, as the priest for the temple for regular pujas daily.
He then visited Saraswathikuntam, where Saraswathi, the unseen,
subterrenan river is curled up. Saraswati is Jnana. Here, he
taught his commentary of Upanishads and Brahma Sutra to
Sanantana and others. He stayed there in Vyasa Guha, the
Cave of Vyasa. Sanantana understood the commentary in one
reading and repeated them to Sankara.