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Bhimashankara Jyotirlinga

(Shiva Purana - Koti Rudra Samhita - 20 to 21) (JL-6)

Shiva Bhimashankar JyotirlingaMeditation: I meditate on the Bhimashankara Jyotirlinga at Kamarupa where Lord Shiva protected devotee Sudakshina from the atrocities of demon Bhima.

Demon Bhima tormenting Sudakshina:
- About demon Bhima: In earlier times there was a demon named Bhima. He was born from Kumbhakarna and Karkati in the Sahya 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 sage Suteekshna, the disciple of sage Agastya. Thus she was living alone under the protection of her son. Hearing her story Bhima became enraged and decided to cause trouble to Hari.

- Bhima performing penance for revenge: Bhima undertook severe tapas for thousands of years meditating on Brahma, and secured the boon of strength beyond measure.

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

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

Sudakshina worshipping Lord Shiva for protection: Sudakshina made a Parthiva Linga and started worshipping Lord 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 worshipped a Parthiva Linga of Lord Shiva at home.

Devas worshipping Lord Shiva for protection: In the meantime the devas and sages lead by Brahma and Vishnu started invoking Lord Shiva on the bank of river Mahakoshi. They made a Parthiva Linga and worshipped Shiva.

Lord Shiva appearing and assuring protection: Shiva became pleased, appeared before the devas 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 he should continue his worship.

Lord Shiva slaying demon Bhima:
- Bhima commanding Sudakshina to stop his worship: Sudakshina 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. Sudakshina having faith in the protective power of Shiva told the truth. Bhima commanded the king to stop the worship of Shiva.

- Sudakshina disregarding Bhima: Sudakshina did not listen and continued his worship as before.

- Bhima trying to kill Sudakshina: Bhima became angry and threw his sword towards the king.

- Shiva appearing and protecting Sudakshina: 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 fighting with Lord Shiva: 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 became 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.

- Lord Shiva reducing Bhima to ashes with a humkara: 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 grew there.

- Gods and sages requesting Lord Shiva to abide there: Then the gods and sages prayed to Lord Shiva to abide there as Bhimashankara.

- Lord Shiva abiding there as Bhimashankara Jyotirlinga: Thus Shiva abided there as the Bhimashankara Jyotirlinga.

Pilgrimage: Bhimashankar Temple, Pune district, Maharashtra Bhimashankar Temple, Pune district, Maharashtra Bhimashankara Jyotirlinga is identified with Bhimashankar Temple in the Pune district of Maharashtra.

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Last updated on Nov-2023

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