Jyotirlingas in Maharashtra
Jyotirlingas are the hide form of light of Lord Shiva .For the followers of Lord Shiva there are 12 Jyotirlingas situated in different parts of India. The five most important of these 12 Jyotirlingas are located in Maharashtra.
The five Jyotirlingas of Maharashtra are
- Aundha Nagnath
- Parali Vajinath
The village of Trimbak, 36 kms from Nashik, is famous for the Trimbakeshwar Temple and as the source of the Godavari River. Trimbakeshwar enshrines one of the 12 jyotirlingas dedicated to Shiva and this one is considered to be the main jyotirlinga.
Legend has it that Guatam Rishi performed a rigorous ritual of prayer and penance or tapasya to Shiva on Brahmagiri Hill which rises above the present-day temple. Pleased with this devotion, Shiva is said to have blessed him and brought down to earth from heaven the sacred rivers of Ganga, Gautami and Godavari. At the Kushavarta Teertha, devotees usually dip themselves into the waters and purify themselves of all sins before entering the temple. To this day, Hindus offer shraad prayers (prayers for the souls of the departed) here. It is also believed that bathing in the waters of the Godavari will bring moksha or salvation.Trimbakeshwar is supposed to be only one place to perform “Kaalsarpyog” pooja all over India.
Mondays are considered particularly holy and the priests carry the idol of Trimbakeshwar or Jotirlingas, in a palanquin on their shoulders around the temple. The annual festival of Shivratri is also celebrated with great pomp and gaiety and attracts thousands of pilgrims from all over.
Those who chant the Dwadasa JyotirLinga Stotram or prayer will attain salvation and enlightenment and be released from this cycle of human existence with all its travails. By worshipping the Lingas, people of all castes, creeds and colour would be freed from all difficulties. By eating the holy offering made to these Lingas (Naivedyam) one would be rid of all the sins instantly.
Bhimashankar is the temple containing one of the five jyotirlingas found in Maharashtra. Nana Fadnis, an eminent statesman of the Peshwa days, constructed the beautiful Shiva Temple at Bhimashankar. The wooden entrance of the temple is beautifully carved. On Mahashivratri day, over 20,000 devotees attend a special religious fair. Bhimashankar is endowed with beautiful scenery and an all-around vibrant atmosphere.
Bhimashankar is the sixth Jyotirling in the series of Dwadasha Jyotirlingas. The temple is very old and surrounded by a scenic nature with green forest of Sahyandri hills. The place is totally surrounded by dense forest of Sahyadri hills which is also considered as the wild life sanctuary by Government of India. This Jotyrlinga is situated at a distance of 125Kms from Pune. . The temple is located at Dakini hill (Shikharam).
Nana Fadnis, an eminent statesman of the Peshwa days, constructed the beautiful Shiva Temple at Bhimashankar. The wooden entrance of the temple is beautifully carved. On Mahashivratri day, over 20,000 devotees attend a special religious fair.Bhimashankar is endowed with beautiful scenery and an all-around vibrant atmosphere.
Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga temple enshrines one of the most revered 12 Jyotirlingas in India. This lingam is also known as Kusumeswarar, Grushmeswara and Ghushmeswara, apart from Grishneswara. The temple was re-constructed in the 18th century by Ahilyabhai Holkar. The temple is constructed in red volcanic rocks and the appealing appearance of the temple is eye catching. The temple has a 5 tier Shikara, which is very attractive. Shikara is crowned with images of Bull and Monkeys.
Legends tell that a spiritual woman named as Kusuma offered worship to Lord Shiva in this place. She used to immerse the Shivalinga in a tank of water ritually and she was blessed with the Lord Shiva. It is believed that Lord had miraculously given rebirth to her son after the death. Devotees offer pray in this place with high reverence and devotion.
Huge numbers of pilgrims visit this place and regular prayers are offered at this temple. Important festival in this temple is Maha Shivaratri.
Situated in the outskirts of Dwaraka, Nageshwar Temple or Nagnath Temple is one of the prominent Shiva shrines in India and this temple represents the removal of evil activities from earth. As one of the 12 Jyotirlingas, this shrine houses a curious myth about its origin.
Shiv Purana, narrate the tale about the temple and it says that Shiva started to reside here in the form of Jyothirlinga after killing the demon by name Daruka. The place got its name from the demon Daruka who had appealed to the god before his death that the place be named after him. Hence the name Naagnath.
In this temple the Shivalinga faces towards the south and the Gomugam is on the east. Giant statue of Lord Shiva allures the devotees with its aesthetic appeal. On the eve of Shivaratri, the temple premises witnesses huge turn out of devotee and which virtually changes the entire ambiance into a place of festivities.
Parli Vaijnath temple
Parli vaijnath is one of the 12 Jyotirlings in India (and one of the 5 Jyotirlings in the Maharashtra). Among the 12 Jyotirling, the Parli Vaijanath temple is Jagrut. PunyaShlok Rani AhilyaBai Holkar got this temple restored. The temple is humongous, built using large stones with mortarless style. The long steps leading up and a grand entrance are striking. The court hall and the inner sanctum are at the same level, allowing the view of the linga from the court hall (usually, the linga are built at a lower level than the court hall, and one has to step down into the inner sanctum). Unlike any other temple, everyone is allowed to touch the linga while paying obeisance at the Parli Vaijanath temple. There are three large Kunda in the premises of the temple.Afair is held on Mahashivratri .lies in Ambejogai tahsil in Beed Dist, and is an important centre of trade and commerce. It is very well served by road and rail transport, there being rail connections with Parbhani and Hyderabad and road connections with Nanded, Jalna, Latur .