The word “Jyotirlinga”, when broken into two words becomes ‘jyothi’, which means ‘radiance’ and ‘lingam, which means ‘Image or sign’ of Shiva. There are a total of 12 Jyotirlingas in India, all sited at strategic locations. Thousands of devotees visit these Jyotirlingas from across the globe to get the blessings of Lord Shiva and get rid of all misfortunes and misdeeds. In this blog, we will talk about the 12 Jyotirlingas in India. Read onto the blog and choose the Jyotirlinga which you are planning to visit next. Begin your spiritual journey by visiting any of these divine jyotirlingas.
Somnath in Gujarat
Located in Prabhas Patan near Veraval in Gujarat, it is believed to be the first among the twelve jyotirlingas in India. Temple was destroyed and was rebuilt around sixteen times. Presently, the temple was reconstructed in a Chalukya style. The Somnath temple is considered holy as several legends are connected to it. One of the prominent tales that is associated with the temple is about a Moon that married 27 daughters of Dakshin Prajapati. Later, the moon was cursed by Prajapati for neglecting all his wives excluding Rohini. To get free from the curse, moon worshipped Lord Shiva. The almighty then accepted his prayers and dwelled in Somnath permanently. The temple opens every day for the worshippers from 6 AM to 9 PM.
Nageshwar Daarukavanam in Gujarat
Another Jyotirlinga that lies on the coast of Saurashtra is Nageshwar which is one of the popular Jyotirlingas in India. Thousands of devotees visit the Nagnath temple to seek the blessings of Nageshwar Mahadev. The temple has a 25-m tall statue of Lord Shiva, humongous garden and an alluring view of Arabian sea. As per the Shiv Purana, the Nageshwar Jyotirlinga is in Darukavana which is a former name of a forest in India. We can find the instances of Darukavana in Indian epics like Kamyakavana, Dvaitavana, Dandaka Vana. The temple is open on all days from 5 AM to 9 PM.
Bhimashankar in Pune
Bhimashankar temple is situated on the banks of river Bhima which further joins river Krishna. The temple has a magnificent black rock structure with Nagara architecture style. It is believed to be built by Bheema- Kumbhakarna’s son. Thousands of devotees visit this temple during the Maha Shivratri. People who visit Bhimashankar temple also go to one more temple which is located close by, Kamalaja temple (incarnation of Parvati). Worshippers can visit the temple anytime between 5 AM to 9:30 PM.
Trimbakeshwar in Nashik
This Jyotirlinga lies near Brahmagiri mountain, the place from where Godavari river originates, also known as Gautami Ganga. Shiva Purana tales reveals that Godavari River and Gautami Rishi begged Shiva to reside here, Thus, Lord Shiva emerged here in the form of Trimbakeshwar. The most distinctive part of this temple is its shape. Rather than a shrine, there are three lingams that represent, Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu. The temple is open for the worshippers on all days from 5:30 AM till 9 PM.
Grishneshwar in Aurangabad
Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga temple also known as Ghrneshwar or Dhushmeshwar Temple is located near Ajanta and Ellora caves. The word Ghrneshwar means ‘Lord of Compassion’. It is one of the most important pilgrimage centres for the people who follow the Shaiva tradition. Vishnu’s Dashavatar sculpture carved on a red rock is the staggering feature of this temple that grabs the attention of every visitor. For darshan and puja, people can visit the temple between 5:30 AM to 9:30 PM.
Baidyanath in Deoghar
Also known by the name of Vaidyanath, Baidyanath and Vaijinath, it is one of the 52 shakti peethas shrines of Sati and the most worshipped Jyotirlingas. As per the Hindu mythology, Ravana used to worship Shiva in Deoghar to get the blessings of the god. Ravana offered all his heads one after the other to Shiva. Please by his sacrifice, shiva gave darshan to the Ravana as a doctor (Vaidhya). This is how the temple got its name as Vaidyanath. The footfall in the temple increases during the Shravan month as it is believed that people who worship Shiva in this month can get rid of all misdeeds and miseries and can attain salvation. Temple is open on all seven days from 4 AM to 3:30 PM and 6 PM to 9 PM.
Mahakaleshwar in Ujjain
Engulfed in the dense forest, Mahakaleshwar temple is sited on the banks of river Shipra in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh. According to the mythological beliefs, Mahakaleshwar is believed to be set up by a five-year-old boy Srikar, who was motivated by the devotion of Ujjain king, Chandrasena. It is also considered to be one of the seven Muktisthals in India, a place where human beings liberate themselves to eternity. The temple is open for the devotees from 4 AM to 11 PM.
Rameswaram In Tamil Nadu
Also known by the name of ‘Varanasi of the south’ and ‘southernmost jyotirlinga’, this phenomenal temple is believed to be worshipped by Lord Rama. The temple has a spectacular structure that offers a picturesque view with the longest corridor and beautifully adorned 36 theerthams. It is also one of the most visited sacred shrines in India. People who visits the Ramanathaswamy temple also visits the Dhanushkodi beach (place from where Lord Rama had built Ram Setu). The temple is open for the pilgrims from 5 AM to 1 PM and 3 PM to 9 PM. However, the darshan is allowed only till 8 PM.
Mallikarjuna in Andhra Pradesh
Sri Bhramaramba Mallikarjuna also known as by the name of Srisailam temple is situated on the banks of River Krishna. One of the notable features of this temple is its mukha mandapa hall, splendid architecture and decorated gopurams. The Mallikarjuna consists of the deities of Parvati and Shiva. Do you know how this temple got its name? Well, the youngest son of Lord Shiva (Kartikeya) got annoyed and came to the Kronch Hills from Kailash. Lord Shiva and Parvati stayed here by the name of Arjun and Mallika. Hence, this temple then got its name ‘Mallikarjuna’. The temple is open for the devotees between 6:30 am to 1 pm and 6:30 pm to 9 pm.
Omkareshwar in Khandwa
One more temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is located on an island called Shivapuri, on the Narmada River. As per the Hindu legends, a war took place between Devas and Danavas. Devas prayed to Lord Shiva for the victory in war. Contented by the prayer, Shiva came on the earth as Omkareshwar and helped devas to attain triumph over evils. There are two temples of Lord Shiva on Narmada river, one is Omkareshwar situated on the island and another one is Amareshwar lies on the south bank of the river. Worshippers can offer prayers in the temple between 5 AM to 10 PM.
Kashi Vishwanath in Varanasi
Kashi Vishwanath temple is built on the banks of Ganga river by Maharani Ahilyabai Holkar (Maratha Monarch) in 1780. Main deity of the temple is Shri Vishwanath. Temple has been destroyed and reconstructed countless times. Last time, it was demolished by Aurangzeb (sixth Mughal emperor). As per the mythological stories, Shiva used to reside here and offered contentment and liberation to all the people. Temple is open for the worshippers on all the days of the week. However, the time of darshan vary as per the daily puja rituals.
Kedarnath In Uttarakhand
Dedicated to Lord Shiva, Kedarnath temple lies in the Garhwal Himalayan range at an altitude of 1200 feet and is one among the four dhams in India. Due to the extreme climatic conditions, the temple remains shut for 6 months in winters. Devotees can visit the temple from May to June. Worshippers visiting Kedarnath temple usually first go to Gangotri and Yamunotri to take holy water which is later offered to Kedarnath shivling. It is believed that people who offer water to shivling gets rid of all miss deeds and misfortune. Shrine opens everyday from 4 AM to 12 Noon and 3 PM to 9 PM.
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