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Grishneshwara Jyotirlinga

(Shiva Purana - Koti Rudra Samhita - 32 to 33) (JL-12)

Shiva Grishneshwar JyotirlingaMeditation: I meditate on the Grishneshwara or Ghushmeshwara Jyotirlinga at Shivalaya where Lord Shiva restored the dead son of devotee Ghushma.

Sudeha killing the son of her sister Ghushma out of jealousy: 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.

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 became 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.

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 became 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 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 with her demand. 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.

At the instance of his wife, Sudharma married 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 engaged herself in worshipping 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.

Then, by the grace of Shiva, Ghushma gave birth to a son, who was beautiful and virtuous.

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. Once a brahmana arrived there and gave his daughter in marriage to the son. Sudharma and Ghushma became happy but Sudeha felt her heart burning.

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 continuing with her daily worship of Lord Shiva unperturbed, inspite of the news of her son's death: 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.

Lord Shiva restoring 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. Lord Shiva became 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 then abided there as Ghushmeshwara Jyotirlinga. The lake which was a store house of Shiva Lingas consecrated by Ghushma became known as Shivalaya as also the place. Sudeha arrived there and became repentant. The three of them (Ghushma, Sudharma and Sudeha) circumambulated the Shiva Linga hundred and one times. Their minds became free and they feel great joy. By looking at or worshipping this Linga, joy increases in a person.

Pilgrimage: Grishneshwar Temple, Aurangabad district, Maharashtra Grishneshwara Jyotirlinga is identified with Grishneshwar Temple in the Aurangabad district of Maharashtra.

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Last updated on Mar-2024

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