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Jyotirlingas - from Shiva Purana

  1. Somnath Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva relieved the curse of Chandra Deva)
  2. Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva-Parvati came to meet Kumara)
  3. Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva protected devotee Veda Priya from demon Dushana)
  4. Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva granted boon to Vindhya Mountain)
  5. Kedarnath Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva gave darshan to devotees Nara and Narayana)
  6. Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva protected devotee Sudakshina from demon Bhima)
  7. Vishwanath Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva created Kashi and held it on his trident)
  8. Tryambakeshwar Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva gave darshan to devotee Gautama Rishi and released the Gautami Ganga)
  9. Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga (Where Ravana placed the Atma Linga of Shiva)
  10. Nageshwar Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva protected devotee Supriya from demon Daruka)
  11. Rameshwar Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva appeared before Sri Rama and gave the blessing of victory against Ravana)
  12. Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga (Where Shiva brought back to life the dead son of devotee Ghushma)


Somnath Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Somnath Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 14): Daksha marries his daughters to Chandra: Somanatha is the first Jyotirlinga. According to legend, Daksha married his 27 daughters to Chandra. Having obtained Chandra as their husband the girls were happy. Similarly Chandra was also happy.

Chandra loves only Rohini neglecting the other wives: However, of all the 27 wives, Chandra loved only Rohini (and neglected the others). The other wives with sorrowful heart went to their father and narrated their sorrows.

Daksha advices Chandra to be kind towards all wives: Daksha also felt sad hearing their tales. He went to Chandra and asked him to be kind towards all his wives, and not repeat such impartial behaviour in future. Chandra however was overpowered by Shiva Maya and did not follow the advice of Daksha. Being attracted towards Rohini, he did not honour the other wives as before.

Daksha curses Chandra to suffer from Kshaya Roga: Daksha arrived at the abode of Chandra and cursed him to suffer from Kshaya Roga (disease of consumption). The curse took immediate effect and Chandra became infected with the disease of consumption.

Gods and sages goes to Lord Brahma to find a remedy: All the sages and gods became worried. They went to Lord Brahma to seek his refuge. Lord Brahma told them about the earlier misdeeds of Chandra (like kidnapping Tara, the wife of Brihaspati) and said that this suffering will check his misconducts. Lord Brahma also told about the remedy. If Chandra goes to Prabhasa Kshetra and worships Lord Shiva by performing Mrityunjaya Puja, then by the grace of Lord Shiva, he can get rid of this ailment.

Chandra goes to Prabhasa Kshetra and performs Tapas: According to the advice of Lord Brahma, Chandra went to Prabhasa Kshetra. The gods and the sages had earlier invoked all tirthas there including Saraswati for the tapas of Chandra. Chandra performed tapas there for six months uninterruptedly by worshipping the Vrishabha Dhwaja (the one with bull as the emblem, i.e. Lord Shiva) with Mrityunjaya Mantra. He recited the Mrityunjaya Mantra ten crores of times and meditated on that mantra with a still mind.

Shiva gives darshan to Chandra: Shiva was pleased with his tapas and appeared before Chandra. Shiva told him to ask for a boon. Chandra asked the Lord to rid him of the disease of consumption. Shiva relieved Chandra from the curse. He (Shiva) said that in one paksha (fortnight) his kala will get reduced gradually, and in the next paksha his kala will increase gradually.

Shiva stays in Prabhasa Kshetra as Someshwara (Somanatha Jyotirlinga): All the gods and sages reached there and blessed Chandra. Then they offered their salutations to Lord Shiva and requested Him to stay there with Devi Parvati. Chandra deva also eulogised the Lord. Shiva was pleased with them and stayed there in the form of Someshwara (Somanatha Jyotirlinga) which became famous in the three worlds. Those who worship Lord Shiva there are relieved from diseases like consumption, leprosy etc. The gods created a kunda there known as Chandra Kunda. Persons who take bath there becomes free from all sins. By taking bath in that kunda for six months, a person gets cured from incurable diseases like consumption. Performing pradakshina (circumambulation) of Prabhasa Kshetra is equivalent to performing parikrama of the whole world. The person becomes shuddhatma (of pure mind) and after death goes to heaven. By looking at Soma Linga, a person gets freed from all sins. His desires are fulfilled and after death goes to heaven.

Somnath Jyotirlinga - Prabhasa Kshetra:

Sri Somnath Jyotirlinga, Prabhasa Kshetra, near Veraval, Saurashtra, Gir Somnath district, Gujarat Sri Somnath Jyotirlinga, Prabhasa Kshetra, near Veraval, Saurashtra, Gir Somnath, Gujarat The Somnath Jyotirlinga is identified with the Somanth temple in Prabhasa Kshetra near Veraval in Saurashtra. It is in the Gir Somnath district of Gujarat.


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Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 15): Kumara leaves Kailasha after the challenge with Ganesha: When Kumara (Kartikeya) reached Kailasha after going around the entire earth, Devarshi Narada arrived there and told Kumara about the marriage of Ganesha and other events. Narada also indicated that Kumara was deliberately sent to take a round around the earth. Hearing this, Kumara saluted his parents and left towards Krauncha mountain inspite of his parents trying to prevent him.

Shiva sends devas, rishis and ganas to bring back Kumara: Getting separated from Kumara, his mother Girija became very sorrowful. Shiva tried to console her but Parvati did not listen. Then Shiva sent the gods, sages and ganas to bring back Kumara. But Kumara out of arrogance did not listen to them.

Shiva and Parvati themselves go to Krauncha mountain to see Kumara: Then Shiva and Parvati both felt sorrowful. They went to the place where Kumara was abiding. Kumara knowing about the arrival of his parents, left Krauncha mountain and moved to a place three yojanas away.

Shiva and Parvati abides in the Krauncha mountain in the form of Jyoti: After the departure of Kumara from the Krauncha mountain, both Shiva and Parvati abided there in the form of Jyoti. Out of their love for their son, Shiva and Parvati used to go to see their son, Shiva during Amavasya and Parvati during Poornima. From that day, Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga became famous in the three worlds. Whoever sees this Jyotirlinga becomes free from sins and all his desires are fulfilled. He does not have to take birth again from the womb. He becomes prosperous in this world with foodgrains and riches.

Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga - Srisailam:

Sri Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga, Srisailam, Kurnool district, Andhra Pradesh Sri Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga, Srisailam, Kurnool district, Andhra Pradesh The Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga is identified with Srisailam Mallikarjuna temple in Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh in the Nallamalai Hills. Srisailam is located on the banks of river Patalaganga (Krishna).


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Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 16): The story of Veda Priya: In the city of Avanti there lived a brahmana who was very noble. He studied and followed the Vedas. The brahmana (Veda Priya) was a devotee of Shiva and used to worship Shiva daily by making a Parthiva Linga. Veda Priya had four sons - Deva Priya, Parama Priya, Sukrita and Suvrata. The sons were also noble and devoted to Shiva. Due to the nobleness of these brahmanas the entire city was filled with Brahmateja.

The story of demon Dushana: A demon named Dushana lived in the Ratnamala mountain. By getting boon from Brahma he became very powerful. He defeated the devas and drove them out of their abodes. He was of evil nature and intent upon destroying the Vedic Dharma.

Dushana comes to Avanti and spreads terror: To destroy the Vedic Dharma at Avanti, Dushana arrived there with a huge army. He called four of his demons and told them to punish the brahmanas who follow Vedic Dharma. Either the brahmana should leave the Vedic Dharma and worship of Shiva or their lives will be in danger. The four demons starting spreading terror in the city. But the brahmanas did not get disturbed and continued to worship Lord Shiva.

People of Avanti takes refuge of the brahmanas: In the meantime, the people of Avanti were terrified and took refuge of the brahmanas. The brahmanas told them that they neither have weapons nor the strength to face the demons. But they have taken refuge of Shiva. So their disgrace will be the disgrace of Shiva. Therefore let Shiva protect them. So saying they continued to worship Shiva.

Shiva protects the brahmanas in the form of Mahakala: Dushana ordered the demons to bind all the brahmanas and beat them. The brahmanas still did not bother and continued to meditate on Shiva. When the demons tried to harm the brahmanas, a pit formed near the Parthiva Linga with a loud sound. Out of that hole Shiva arose assuming the terrible form of Mahakala. Shiva declared that he as Mahakala has come to destroy the wicked. Thus speaking he gave out a Humkara. Dushana and part of his army was reduced to ashes. Part of the army fled.

Shiva gives boon to the brahmanas: The gods played musical instruments and rained flowers from heaven. The brahmanas offered their salutations to their Lord. Shiva was pleased and told the brahmanas to ask for a boon. The brahmanas requested the Lord to redeem them and abide there for the welfare of all. Shiva bestowed salvation to the brahmanas at His Feet and abided there in the form of a Linga. From that day Shiva became famous as Mahakaleshwara. By seeing this Linga, a person does not have to face misery. His desires are fulfilled and he finally attains moksha.

Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga - Ujjain:

Sri Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga, Ujjain district, Madhya Pradesh Sri Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga, Ujjain district, Madhya Pradesh The Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga is identified with the Mahakaleshwar temple in Ujjain district of Madhya Pradesh. A special feature of the puja is Bhasma Arati which is held in the early morning at 4 AM.


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Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 18): Narada worships Shiva at Vindhya mountain: Once Narada worshipped the Shiva Linga at Gokarna with great devotion. Then he went to Vindhya mountain and worshipped Shiva there.

Narada quells the pride of Vindhya mountain: The Vindhya mountain appeared before Narada thinking with pride that he possessed everything and does not have any deficiency. To dispel his pride Narada told him that Sumeru mountain was higher than him and is considered as god. Vindhya mountain was pained hearing this, and he decided to perform penance worshipping Lord Shiva.

Vindhya mountain performs tapas at Omkareshwar: He went to Omkareshwar and constructed a Parthiva Linga. He worshipped Lord Shiva for six months uninterruptedly at the same place.

Shiva gives boon to Vindhya mountain: Shiva was pleased with his tapas, appeared before him and told him to ask for a boon. Vindhya mountain asked for the buddhi to accomplish his task. Shiva thought that Vindhya mountain will use the boon for his own purpose causing harm to others, so how can the boon be made beneficial to others. Shiva however gave the best boon that the Vindhya mountain could do whatever he liked.

Shiva abides in the Linga at Omkareshwar: At that time the devas and sages came there and worshipped Shankara. They requested Shiva to stay there for the welfare of all. The earlier Linga named Omkara became of two forms. Shiva abided in the Omkara Linga and came to be known as Omkara Shiva. Shiva also abided in the Parthiva Linga and came to be known as Parameshwara. Both the Lingas fulfill the desires of the devotees and bestows prosperity and salvation. Whoever worships Shiva does not have to be reborn again from the womb of a mother.

Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga - Khandwa:

Sri Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga, Khandwa district, Madhya Pradesh Sri Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga, Khandwa district, Madhya Pradesh The Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga is identified with Omkareshwar temple in Khandwa district of Madhya Pradesh, on the banks of river Narmada. In this place river Narmada splits into two parts and forms an island (named Mandhata or Shivapuri) which resembles the symbol of Omkara. According to legend, the Shivalinga split into two, one half is Omkareshwar and the other Amreshwar (Mamleshwar).


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Kedarnath Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Kedarnath Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 19): Nara and Narayana worships Lord Shiva at Badaryashrama: Nara and Narayana, two incarnations of Hari, performed tapas in Bharata Khanda at Badaryashrama. They worshipped Lord Shiva in a Parthiva Linga. Shiva used to come there daily since he is subservient to his devotees.

Lord Shiva gives boon to Nara and Narayana: They continued to worship Shiva for a long time. Shiva became pleased and one day appeared before them and told them to ask for a boon. They requested Shiva to abide there so that they can worship him.

Lord Shiva abides there in the form of a Jyotirlinga: Lord Shiva abided there in that snow-clad Kedara mountains in the form of a Jyotirlinga. This Linga was worshipped by Nara and Narayana and it removes all sorrows and sins. Lord Shiva fulfills the wishes of the devotees there. One who sees this Jyotirlinga in the Badari forest becomes free from all sins and finally becomes liberated.

Kedarnath Jyotirlinga - Uttarakhand:

Sri Kedarnath Jyotirlinga, Rudraprayag district, Uttarakhand Sri Kedarnath Jyotirlinga, Rudraprayag district, Uttarakhand The Kedarnath Jyotirlinga is identified with the Kedarnath temple in Rudraprayag district of Uttarakhand. The temple is located at an altitude of 3581 m.


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Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 20): The story of demon Bhima: In earlier times there was a demon named Bhima. He was born from Kumbhakarna and Karkati in the Sakya mountain. He was living with his mother. One day Bhima asked his mother about his father. His mother told about Kumbhakarna who was killed by Rama. She also told about her other husband Viradha who was also killed by Rama. She further told about her father and mother - Karkata and Puskasi, who were reduced to ashes by an ascetic. Thus she was living alone under the protection of her son.

Bhima performs penance and secures boon of immeasurable strength: Hearing her story Bhima was enraged and decided to cause trouble to Hari. Bhima undertook severe tapas for thousands of years meditating on Brahma, and secured the boon of strength beyond measure.

Bhima defeats the devas: Thereafter Bhima overpowered the devas and removed them from their abodes. He also defeated Vishnu and conquered the nether world.

Bhima imprisons the king of Kamarupa, a great devotee of Shiva: Then he went to Kamarupa country, fought with king Sudakshina and defeated him. Bhima imprisoned the king of Kamarupa who was a great devotee of Shiva.

Sudakshina worships Shiva in the prison: The king made a Parthiva Linga and started worshipping Shiva in the prison. He eulogized Ganga and mentally bathed in her holy waters. He worshipped Shiva by stotras, mudras, asanas and the Panchakshari Mantra (Om Namah Shivaya). Queen Dakshina also assisted in the worship.

Devas take refuge in Shiva: In the meantime the devas and sages lead by Brahma and Vishnu started invoking Shiva on the bank of river Mahakoshi. They made a Parthiva Linga and worshipped Shiva. Shiva was pleased, appeared before them and told them to ask for a boon. The devas requested Shiva to kill demon Bhima. Shiva assured them that he would kill the demon. He also sent the gods to Sudakshina to assure him that Bhima would be killed and let him continue the worship.

Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 21): Shiva kills demon Bhima: The king continued to worship Lord Shiva in the prison. Bhima thought that the king was performing some sort of magical rites against him. He told the king to tell truthfully what he was doing. The king having faith in the protective power of Shiva told the truth. Bhima commanded the king to stop the worship of Shiva. The king did not listen and continued as before. Bhima became angry and threw his sword towards the king. Instantly Shiva appeared there and declared that he was Bhimeshwara who has come to protect the devotees and destroy the evil. Shiva destroyed the sword of Bhima. Bhima threw many other weapons towards Shiva and Shiva destroyed them all. A fierce battle ensued between the Shiva ganas and the demons. The entire earth was shaken up by that fight. The gods and sages became highly disturbed. Finally Narada arrived and prayed to Shiva to cut short that terrific battle. All the gods eulogized Shiva. Shiva became pleased and reduced Bhima and his army into ashes by a humkara. The fire of the anger of Shiva spread from forest to forest along with the ashes of the demons. Several oshadhis were grown there.

Shiva abides there as Bhimashankara Jyotirlinga: Then the gods and sages prayed to Lord Shiva to abide there as Bhimashankara. Thus Shiva abided there as the Bhimashankara Jyotirlinga.

Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga - Pune:

Sri Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga, Pune district, Maharashtra Sri Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga, Pune district, Maharashtra The Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga is identified with the Bhimashankar temple in the Pune district of Maharashtra in Sahyadri hills (about 125 km from Pune city). This is the place from where river Bhima originates.


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Vishwanath Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Vishwanath Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 22): Shiva wills to become many and creates Purusha and Prakriti: Shiva, in the form of Chidananda (Consciousness and Bliss), who is without vikaras (modifications), who is advitiya (one without a second) and sanatana (eternal), once willed of becoming saguna (with attributes). It split into male and female forms. The male form is known as Shiva (as saguna) and the female form is known as Shakti.

Shiva tells Purusha and Prakriti to perform penance for creation: Thereafter a divine voice emerged from the nirgina Paramatman which told them (Purusha and Prakriti) to perform tapas for starting the creation. Purusha and Prakriti told the (nirguna) Shiva: There is no place to perform tapas, so where should we perform tapas as commanded by You?

Shiva creates a city extending five kroshas: Then the (nirguna) Shiva from the essence of its tejas created a beautiful city entending five kroshas.

Vishnu performs tapas in that city: Then Shiva established Vishnu in that city for creation. Vishnu performed tapas there for a long time. By that tapas several streams emerged. At that time everything was shunya and nothing else was visible. Vishnu saw this strange sight (of nothingness) and shook his head (in surprise). Then a mani (gem) fell from his ear. That mani turned into a great tirtha known as Manikarnika.

Shiva holds Panchakrosi on his trident: When the streams of water flowed and spread upto five krosas, Shiva held it on the tip of His trident.

Brahma born from the navel of Vishnu: Then Vishnu slept there with Prakriti as his wife. By the command of Shiva, from the navi (navel) of Vishnu was born Brahma seated over a lotus. By the command of Shiva, Brahma created fourteen lokas in the Brahmanda.

Shiva separates Panchakrosi thinking of the salvation of living beings: The living beings born within the lokas of Brahmanda are bound by karma. So how can they attain me? Thus thinking Shiva separated the Panchakrosi (holding it on his trident). This place bestows auspiciousness, destroys the karmas, and thus reveals the illumination of Moksha. The place bestows divine knowledge and is very dear to Shiva.

Shiva establishes Kashi in the mortal world: Shiva the Paramatman established the Avimukta Swayambhu Linga in that kshetra (in the tip of his trident) and said: This kshetra is part of my amsha (part), so I will never leave it. Thus uttering Shiva placed Kashika from his trident on the mortal world. Kashi does not get destroyed even after a day of Brahma. At that time, Shiva holds it on his trident. When Brahma again recreates, Kashi is again established on the earth. The Avimukteshwara Linga of Kashi liberates one from grave sins. At other places, one attains only Sarupya Mukti while at Kashi one attains Sayujya Mukti.

Shiva abides in Kashi: Kalagni Rudra and Avimukta prayed to Lord Shiva to abide in Kashi for the welfare of all. Thereafter Shiva for the benefit of the people abided in Kashi. the city then became greater than ever before.

Vishwanath Jyotirlinga - Kashi:

Sri Vishwanath Jyotirlinga, Kasi or Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh Sri Vishwanath Jyotirlinga, Kasi or Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh The Vishwanath Jyotirlinga is identified with the Vishwanath temple in Varanasi district of Uttar Pradesh. The temple is situated on the bank of river Ganga. The ancient city of Varanasi has many ghats on the Ganga river. The Dashahwamedh Ghat is close to the Kasi Vishwanatha temple.


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Tryambakeshwar Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Tryambakeshwar Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 24): Story of sage Gautama: In ancient times there lived a famous sage known as Gautama with his chaste wife Ahalya who performed tapas for thousand years in the Brahmagiri hills.

Gautama pleases Varuna Deva and gets perennial water supply: Once there was no rainfall for hundred years. All living beings suffered greatly. Sage Gautama performed tapas with pranayama for six months and pleased Varuna Deva. As a boon Varuna Deva filled a pit dug by Gautama with perennial water. Due to this perennial water supply, the ashrama of Gautama was filled with various foodgrains, trees, flowers and fruits. Knowing about this, thousands of sages, animals, birds and other beings arrived there. The place developed into a beautiful forest.

Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 25): Conspiracy against Gautama: Once when the disciples of sage Gautama went to the water pit to fill water, the wives of the other sages rebuked them saying that they are entitled to fill water first, being the wives of sages. The disciples returned and told this to Devi Ahalya. When she accompanied them and got the water, the other wives rebuked her also. Thereafter those wives instigated their husbands to drive away sage Gautama. The sages in delusion invoked Ganeshwara and asked for the boon of getting Gautama driven out of the ashrama. Ganeshwara tried to abstain them from their intentions in various ways, warning them that this will bring about their downfall. However the sages were adamant.

Gautama leaves the ashrama: Ganeshwara took the form of a skeleton cow and entered the field of the ashrama. Gautama took a straw to drive out the cow but the cow instantly fell down and died. The other sages took this opportunity and blamed Gautama of killing a cow. They asked him to leave the ashrama. Gautama left the place and built an ashrama one krosha away. He asked for the method of repentance from the sages. The sages told him to circumambulate the Brahmagiri mountain one hundred eight times, bring Ganga on earth and have a bath in that, and worship Lord Shiva by making one crore Parthiva Lingas. Thereafter taking bath in the Ganga, go around the mountain eleven times, and then bathe the Parthiva Lingas in Ganga water hundred times.

Gautama worships Lord Shiva: Gautama went round the Brahmagiri mountain and then made a Parthiva Linga and started worshipping Lord Shiva. He was accompanied by Devi Ahalya.

Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 26): Shiva grants boon to Gautama: Shiva was pleased and appeared before Gautama. Shiva told Gautama to ask for a boon. When Gautama told the Lord to relieve him of the sins, Shiva revealed the conspiracy of the sages and told that Gautama is always pure. Sinful persons become pure by looking at him. So Shiva told Gautama to ask for another boon. Gautama thought that the news of his sin has spread everywhere and his intention of purification should be carried out. He therefore requested the Lord to make Ganga flow there. Shiva granted the boon and made the remaining water of the Ganga flow down the Brahmagiri hill. The gods arrived there and eulogized Lord Shiva and Devi Ganga. They requested them to stay there permanently. The gods told that when Guru (Jupiter) will come in Simha Rasi, all the gods will also arrive there. At the request of gods and sage Gautama, Ganga flowed there by the name Gautami, and Lord Shiva abided there as Tryambakeshwar Jyotirlinga. Both of them wash away great sins.

Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 27): Flow of Gautami Ganga: The flow of Ganga started in Brahmagiri hills from Udumbara branches. Sage Gautama took bath there. The place is known as Gangadwara and washes away all sins. When the sages who hatched conspiracy against Gautama came to bathe in the Ganga, Ganga disappeared. Gautama was merciful to them and asked the sages to perform repentance by circumambulating the mountain hundred and one times. After the completion of their repentance, at the request of sage Gautama, river Ganga appeared there again from Kushavarta, a place below Gangadwara. A person taking bath there is relieved of all sins.

Tryambakeshwar Jyotirlinga - Nashik:

Sri Tryambakeshwar Jyotirlinga, Nashik district, Maharashtra Sri Tryambakeshwar Jyotirlinga, Nashik district, Maharashtra The Tryambakeshwar Jyotirlinga is identified with the Tryambakeshwar temple in the Nashik district of Maharashtra in the foothills of Brahmagiri hills. The river Godavari originates from this place.


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Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 28): Ravana worships Shiva in Kailasha: Once Ravana, who was full of pride worshipped Lord Shiva in the Kailasha mountain. When he could not please Shiva, he performed more severe tapas. Thereafter he performed tapas at Siddhisthana on the southern side of the mountains within a cluster of trees. He dug up a pit, lighted fire in it, and placing the Shiva Linga nearby, performed homas. In summer he performed tapas in panchagni (five fires), during rainy season he sat on the bare earth, and during winter he performed tapas in water. But even then Shiva was not pleased, because Shiva is not pleased with evil-minded persons. Thereafter Ravana became noble and started offering his heads to Shiva, one by one daily.

Shiva gives boon to Ravana: After offering nine heads, when he was about to offer his tenth head, Shiva appeared and prevented him. Shiva also restored all his other heads and bestowed on him immense prowess. Also, as a boon Ravana wanted to take Lord Shiva himself to Lanka. Shiva instead gave him a Shiva Linga and told him that wherever he kept it on the ground, it will get fixed there.

Ravana places the Shiva Linga on the ground: While carrying the Shiva Linga, Ravana felt a great urge to ease himself due to Shiva Maya. Seeing a cowherd boy, he gave him the Linga to hold for sometime. But the cowherd boy was unable to bear the weight of the Linga for long, and placed it on the ground. The Linga got fixed there and came to be known as Vaidyanatheshwara. It bestows both worldly prosperity and salvation, and removes sins by a mere look. After Ravana left, the gods came there, worshipped that Shiva Linga and returned to their respective abodes.

Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga - Deogarh:

Sri Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga, Deogarh district, Jharkhand & Parli, Maharashtra Sri Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga, Deogarh district, Jharkhand The Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga is identified with Baidyanath Dham or Babadham in the Deogarh district of Jharkhand. The temple is around 4 miles from the Jasidih railway station on the Howrah-Delhi route. During the month of shravan, thousands of devotees fill their kanwars (pots) with Ganga water at Sultanganj and carry the water to Baba Baidyanath temple at Babadham walking a distance of 109 km.

Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga - Parli:

Sri Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga, Parli, Maharashtra The Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga is also identified with the Parli Vaidyanath temple in Parli, in the Beed district of Maharashtra.

Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga - Kangra:

Baijnath Temple, Kangra, Himachal Pradesh The Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga is also identified with the Baijnath temple near Palampur, in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh.


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Nageshwar Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 29): Story of demon Daruka: There was a demon called Daruka who lived with his wife Darukaa and other demons in a vast forest (Darukavana) spreading over sixteen yojanas on the western coast of the ocean. Demoness Darukaa obtained a boon from Devi Parvati, because of which wherever she moved in the forest, that part became full of trees and other requisites. Daruka was of evil nature and harassed people by destroying their yagyas.

Aurva rishi curses the demons: The noble people who were terrorised by the demons took refuge with sage Aurva and requested him to protect them. Sage Aurva pronounced a curse on the demons that if they try to kill the people on the earth, they will themselves be killed inspite of them being powerful. The gods came to know of this curse and taking this opportunity started preparing for a war with the demons.

Demoness Darukaa carries the entire forest within the ocean: The demons came to know of the intention of the gods and became worried. In case they fight, they wil perish; in case they do not fight, they will still perish. In case they stay as they are, what shall they eat? When they were thus worried, demoness Darukaa told them that she has a boon from Devi Parvati by means of which she can carry the entire forest wherever she liked. Then she carried the entire forest within the ocean. Due to the curse of sage Aurva, the demons did not return on earth, but roamed about on the surface of water. They used to harass the sailors.

Daruka imprisons Supriya, a devotee of Shiva: Once, several boats arrived there. The demons made the people captive and imprisoned them in their city. The leader of those people was Supriya, a vaishya and a great devotee of Shiva. Inside the jail, he worshipped Lord Shiva in a Parthiva Linga. He also taught other people how to worship Shiva.

Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 30): Shiva appears to protect Supriya: In this manner six months passed worshipping Lord Shiva. Then one day Daruka came to know of this and enquired Supriya about the object of his meditation. Supriya said he knew nothing. Daruka became angry and ordered the demons to kill Supriya. Supriya closed his eyes and meditated on Lord Shiva. Shive appeared from within a pit and gave the Pashupata astra to Supriya. Supriya killed all the demons with it. Thus Shiva protected his devotees.

Shiva grants a boon to the forest: Shiva then granted a boon to the forest that the four castes (Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras) will flourish in that forest. Excellent sages and devotees of Shiva will live there and not persons of tamashika nature.

Parvati grants a boon to demoness Darukaa: In the meantime, demoness Darukaa who was a devotee of Devi Parvati invoked the goddess through hymns. Devi Parvati appeared and gave her a boon that her race will be protected.

Conflict between the boons of Shiva and Parvati: There was a mild conflict between Shiva and Parvati due to their conflicting boons. However the conflict was resolved in a loving manner. Devi Parvati said that the boon of Shiva will take effect after the end of the yuga. Till then there will be tamashik creation. Else there will be a pralaya. Demoness Darukaa who is her own shakti will rule over the rakshasas, and their descendants will collectively stay in the forest.

Shiva abides in the forest: Shiva thereafter said that he would stay in the forest and lovingly protect the devotees. Then Shiva took the form of a Jyotirlinga and Parvati became known as Nageshwari. The Nageshwar Jyotirlinga fulfills all the desires of the people.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga - Saurashtra:

Sri Nageshwara Jyotirlinga, Dwarka district, Gujrat & Hingoli district, Maharashtra & Almora district, Uttarakhand Sri Nageshwara Jyotirlinga, Dwarka district, Gujrat The Nageshwar Jyotirlinga is identified with the Nageshwara temple on the coast of Saurashtra in the route between Dwarka city and island of Beyt Dwarka, in the Devbhoomi Dwarka district of Gujarat. It is believed that this is the Darukavana mentioned in the puranas.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga - Hingoli:

Aundha Nagnath Jyotirlinga, Hingoli district, Maharashtra The Nageshwar Jyotirlinga is also identified with the Aundha Nagnath temple located in the Hingoli district of Maharashtra.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga - Almora:

Jageshwar Mahadev Temple, Almora district, Uttarakhand The Nageshwar Jyotirlinga is further identified with The Jageshwar Mahadev temple (1870 m) in Almora district of Uttarakhand. This is located in a narrow and beautiful valley in the confluence of streams Nandini and Surabhi, which flow down the hills and meet here.


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Rameshwar Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Rameshwar Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 31): Sri Rama camps on the seashore with the army of monkeys: When Sri Rama came to know that Devi Sita was in Lanka, he marched with a huge army of monkeys and camped on the shore of the southern sea.

Sri Rama worships Lord Shiva: There, Sri Rama made a Parthiva Linga and worshipped Lord Shiva with sixteen types of ritualistic worships. He prayed to Lord Shiva with great devotion to bless him for the victory of his mission against Ravana, another great devotee of Shiva. Sri Rama worshipped Lord Shiva again and again; he recited mantras, meditated and danced before the Lord. His heart was overwhelmed with devotional love.

Shiva blesses Sri Rama: Shiva became very pleased and appeared before Rama. He told Rama to ask for a boon. Sri Rama eulogized Lord Shiva and prayed for victory against Ravana. Shiva granted him the boon.

Shiva abides there as Jyotirlinga: Sri Rama further requested Shiva to reside in the Linga for the welfare of all people. Shiva took the form of a Linga and resided there. The Linga became famous in the world as Rameshwara. This Linga fulfills the wishes of the devotees and grants prosperity and salvation. Whoever worships this Shiva Linga with Ganga water with great devotion becomes a Jivanamukta.

Rameshwaram Jyotirlinga - Ramanathapuram:

Sri Rameshwaram Jyotirlinga, Ramanathapuram district, Tamil Nadu Sri Rameshwaram Jyotirlinga, Ramanathapuram district, Tamil Nadu The Rameshwaram Jyotirlinga is identified with the Rameshwaram temple by the sea-side (Bay of Bengal) on the Ramanathapuram district of Tamil Nadu. There are 22 Tirthas within the temple complex where the pilgrims bathe.


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Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana:

Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 32): Story of Sudharma and Sudeha: A brahmana named Sudharma lived near Devagiri mountain. He was well-versed in the Vedas, performed the Vedic rites and taught Vedas to his pupil. He was a great devotee of Shiva. His wife Sudeha was devoted to her husband and also followed Shiva Dharma. However they were not blessed with a son. Sudharma did not grieve about this and engaged himself in the worship of Lord Shiva. However Sudeha was mentally distressed and often implored her husband to strive for a son.

Neighbours rebuke Sudeha: Once Sudeha went to a marriage ceremony of a neighbour. There, a woman called her a barren woman who has no one to inherit her wealth. It is a disgrace to her wealth and honour. Sudeha was very depressed and narrated this story to her husband. Sudharma consoled her not to be worried because what will happen will happen. But Sudeha insisted that he should somehow beget a son.

Sudharma tests the will of Shiva: Due to persistent demand from his wife, once Sudeha prepared two flowers to offer in the sacrificial fire. He mentally marked one flower to be yielding a son. Then Sudharma told his wife to choose a flower. Sudeha picked the other flower which was not mentally marked to yield a son. Sudharma was relieved knowing the will of the Lord and told his wife to shed false hope for a son and instead devotedly serve the Lord.

Sudeha requests her husband to marry her younger sister to beget a son: Sudeha could not leave her desire to get a son. One day she requested her husband to marry her younger sister Ghushma to beget a son. Sudharma did not agree initially but Sudeha brought her younger sister immediately and persisted. Sudharma warned her that the birth of a son from Ghushma will make her jealous. Sudeha assured him that she will never be jealous of her sister.

Sudharma marries Ghushma: At the instance of his wife, Sudharma marries Ghushma. After marriage Sudharma told Sudeha to look after her younger sister with loving care. He himself continued to engage himself in the worship of Lord Shiva. Sudeha looked after her younger sister with loving care without any jealousy.

Ghushma worships Lord Shiva with great devotion: Ghushma worshipped Lord Shiva daily by making one hundred and one Shiva Lingas. She worshipped those Lingas and then consigned them daily in a nearby lake. Performing daily worship in this way, she completed the worship of hundred thousand Lingas.

Son born to Ghushma: Then, by the grace of Shiva, a son was born to Ghushma, who was beautiful and virtuous.

Sudeha becomes jealous of Ghushma: After the birth of the son from her younger sister, Sudeha became jealous of Ghushma. Her heart started burning like a fire. When people praised the son, she was not able to tolerate this.

Shiva Purana (Kotirudra Samhita 33): Ghushma's son gets married: Once a brahmana arrived and gave his daughter in marriage to the son. Sudharma and Ghushma were happy but Sudeha felt her heart burning.

Sudeha kills the son of Ghushma: Sudeha's heart kept burning with the fire of jealousy, which finally she could not bear. She decided to kill the son to extinguish the flame in her heart. So, one night, when the son was sleeping with his wife, Sudeha killed him with a big knife and cut off his limbs in pieces. She carried those body parts and threw them in the lake where Ghushma daily consigned the Shiva Lingas.

Ghushma remains unperturbed and continues to worship Shiva: Next morning, Ghushma got up early and as usual started worshipping Lord Shiva by making the Shiva Lingas. The wife of the son screamed by seeing blood and flesh on the bed of her husband. Sudeha also pretended to cry. Ghushma heard the news but did not discard her daily worship. Her mind was unperturbed. She completed her worship in noon and said that the one who has given the boy will also protect him. She carried the Shiva Lingas to the lake and consigned them as usual.

Shiva restores the son of Ghushma: Then she found that her son was standing on the bank of the lake. The son declared that he was brought back to life by the grace of his mother and Lord Shiva. Ghushma did not feel too much elated by seeing her son alive, just as she was not perturbed to hear about his death. Lord Shiva appeared before her and told her to ask for a boon. Lord Shiva also revealed that Sudeha had killed the son and now he is going to kill that woman with his trident. Ghushma asked the boon to save her sister.

Shiva abides there as Jyotirlinga: Lord Shiva was greatly pleased with Ghushma due to her devotion and non-attachment. He told Ghushma to ask for another boon. Ghushma requested the Lord to stay there in her name and protect the world. Shiva thereafter abided there as Ghushmeshwara Jyotirlinga. The lake which was a store house of Shiva Lingas consecrated by Ghushma came to be known as Shivalaya as also the place. Sudeha arrived there and became repentent. The three of them (Ghushma, Sudharma and Sudeha) circumambulated the Shiva Linga hundred and one times. Their minds became free and they felt great joy. By looking at or worshipping this Linga, joy increases in a person.

Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga - Aurangabad:

Sri Grishneshwar or Ghushmeshwara Jyotirlinga, Aurangabad district, Maharashtra The Grishneshwar or Ghusmeshwara Jyotirlinga is identified with the Grishneshwar temple in Verul village, 30 km from Aurangabad and 11 km from Daulatabad in Aurangabad district of Maharashtra. The temple is in close proximity to Ellora caves.


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Bharatavarsha - The Land of Gods and Sages:

1. Stotras by Deity:
Initial: Ganesha - Hanuman - Gurudeva - Gayatri
Tridevas: Brahma - (Vishnu - Narasimha - Rama - Krishna) - Shiva
Tridevis: Saraswati - (Lakshmi - Tulasi - Bhoomi) - Parvati
Others: Murugan - Surya - Ganga - Yamuna - Narmada - Others
Final: Vedas - Brahman

2. Pilgrimages by Deity:
Initial: Ganesha
Tridevas: Brahma - (Vishnu - Narasimha - Rama - Krishna) - Shiva
Tridevis: Saraswati - Lakshmi - (Parvati - Shakambari)
Others: Murugan - Ganga

3. Sadhana: Sadhana - Hermitages - Penances

4. Saints: Ramakrishna - Vivekananda - Ramana - Saints

5. Sacred Geography: Forests - Mountains - Rivers - Lakes

6. Puranas: Scriptures

7. Religious Life: Stotras - Puja - Pilgrimages - Festivals - Varnashramas - Samskaras - Traditions

8. Other Aspects: Sanskrit - Arts - Music - Dance - Medicine - Architecture - Astronomy

Green Corner: >>



Om, May there be Peace in Heaven,
May there be Peace in the Sky,
May there be Peace in the Earth,
May there be Peace in the Water,
May there be Peace in the Plants,
May there be Peace in the Trees,
May there be Peace in the Gods in the various Worlds,
May there be Peace in Brahman,
May there be Peace in All,
May there be Peace Indeed within Peace,
Giving Me the Peace which Grows within Me,
Om, Peace, Peace, Peace.

(Shanti Mantra of Upanishad)

Preserve Nature,
And Nature will preserve Us,
Simplify Life,
And make the Nature thrive,
Plant Trees,
And make our planet Green.

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Green Message: The Evergreen Messages of Spirituality, Sanskrit and Nature

Last updated on Sep-2017

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