Sri Shiva

सौराष्ट्रे सोमनाथं चश्रीशैले मल्लिकार्जुनम् ।

उज्जयिन्यांमहाकालमोंकारममलेश्वरम् ॥१॥

Saurastre Somanatham Ca Shrishaile Mallikarjunam |

Ujjayinyaam Mahakalam-Omkaara-Mamaleshvaram ||1||

Somnath Jyotirlingam in Saurastra:

The Somnath Jyotirlingam is located in Saurastra, Gujarat.It is said that Chandra Deva (Moon God) worshipped Sri Shiva here to regain hisbeauty and radiance which waned due to a curse by his father-in-law DakshaPrajapati. Daksha cursed Chandra Deva for showing favor to only one of his 27wives (named Rohini) and neglecting the others. Sri Shiva removed the cursepartially so that Chandra Deva can regain his beauty during the bright half ofthe moon (while losing it during the dark half). On the request of Chandra Devaand other gods, Lord Shiva stayed there as the Somnath Jyotirlingam.

Mallikarjuna Jyotirlingam in Srisailam:

The Mallikarjuna Jyotirlingam is located in Srisailam,Andhra Pradesh. It is said that Devi Parvati (as Mallika) and Sri Shiva (asArjuna) came to visit their son Kartikeya in this place. So this place isblessed by both Devi and Shiva. It is also said that a princess namedChandravati found the Shiva Lingam (by digging the ground) after she saw inastonishment that a cow was shedding its milk on the ground below a Bilva tree.She built a Shiva temple there. Lord Shiva was pleased with her devotion andconferred Moksha (liberation) to her. On the request of the devotees, LordShiva stayed there as the Mallikarjuna Jyotirlingam.

Mahakaleswar Jyotirlingam in Ujjain:

The Mahakaleswar Jyotirlingam is located in Ujjain inMadhya Pradesh. It is said that Sri Shiva burnt to ashes the demon Dushan herewith a "humkara" (grunt) assuming the huge and terrible form of aMahakala, to save his devotees. The demon king Dushan proclaimed himself to bethe supreme and tortured the Brahmanas of Avantika who worshipped Sri Shiva.Sri Shiva assumed the form of Mahakala when the Brahmanas earnestly prayed toHim to protect them from the demon king. On the request of the devotees, LordShiva stayed there as the Mahakaleswar Jyotirlingam.

Omkareshwar-Mamaleshwar Jyotirlingam:

The Omkareshwar-Mamaleshwar Jyotirlingam is located on anisland on the Narmada river in Madhya Pradesh. It is said that the Devas (gods)worshipped Sri Shiva here to gain victory over the Danavas (demons). By thegrace of Sri Shiva, the Devas gained the power to defeat the Danavas. It isalso said that king Mandhata (an ancestor of Sri Rama) of Ikshvaku dynasty andhis sons Ambarish and Mucckund did great penance here. So the mountain is namedas Mandhata. It is also said that the Vindhya mountain did severe penance hereand worshipped Sri Shiva to get the boon to become the biggest mountain. SriShiva was pleased with his penance and granted him the ability to grow withoutcausing harm to others. Later sage Agastya checked the growth of Vindhyamountain when he misused his power of growth. The Omkareshwar and Mamaleshwarare two separate Lingams but part of the same Jyotirlingam. It is said thatLord Shiva split the original Lingam into two parts on the request of the godsand sages. On the request of the devotees, Lord Shiva stayed there as theOmkareshwar-Mamaleshwar Jyotirlingam.

परल्यां वैद्यनाथं चडाकिन्यां भीमाशंकरम् ।

सेतुबंधे तु रामेशंनागेशं दारुकावने ॥२॥

Paralyam Vaidyanatham Ca Dakinyam Bhimashankaram |

Setubandhe Tu Ramesham Nagesham Darukavane ||2||

Vaidyanath Jyotirlingam:

The Vaidyanath Jyotirlingam is located in Parle. The exactlocation of the Jyotirlingam is debated. Parle is interpreted in Jharkhand(Vaidyanath Dham), Himachal Pradesh (Baijnath Dham) and Maharashtra (ParleVaidyanath). It is said that the demon king Ravana did severe penance inKailasa and pleased Sri Shiva. Ravana then asked Him to come to Lanka and staythere. Sri Shiva instead gave His Lingam to Ravana and told him to carry it toLanka without putting it down anywhere. On the way back to Lanka, the godstricked Ravana. Ravana felt a great urge to relieve himself and gave the Lingamto a cowherd boy to hold it. The cowherd boy unable to hold the Lingam for longkept it on the earth and left. The Lingam got permanently fixed there as theVaidyanath Jyotirlingam.

Bhimashankar Jyotirlingam:

The Bhimashankar Jyotirlingam is located in Dakini. Theexact location of Dakini is debated. Dakini is interpreted to be in Maharastra(near Pune and also in Sahayadri hill), Uttarkhand (Kashipur), Assam (nearGuwahati) and Orissa (Bhimpur). It is said that Lord Shiva destroyed the demonBhima here when he was about to strike the Lingam with a sword. The Lingam wasworshipped by His devotee Kamarupeshwar who was imprisoned by Bhima. Bhima, theson of Kumbhakarna and Karkati did severe penance and became very powerful by aboon of Sri Brahma. It is also said that Sri Shiva after destroying the demonTripurasura (who harassed the three worlds) rested in this place. The sweatfrom his body collected in a kund (pond) from which the river Bhima started. Onthe request of his devotees Sri Shiva stayed there as the Bhimashankar Jyotirlingam.

Rameswar Jyotirlingam:

The Rameswar Jyotirlingam is located in Setubandha (inRameswaram), Tamil Nadu. It is said that Sri Rama worshipped a Shiva Lingammade of sand here before the war with demon king Ravana. Sri Shiva was pleasedwith the worship of Sri Rama and blessed Him that He would be victoriousagainst Ravana. Also on the request of Sri Rama, Sri Shiva stayed there as theRameswar Jyotirlingam.

Nageswar Jyotirlingam :

The Nageswar Jyotirlingam is located in Daruka Vana. Theexact location of Daruka Vana is debated. Daruka Vana is interpreted to belocated in Uttarkhand (Jageshwar), Gujarat (Dwarka) and Maharashtra (AundhaNagnath). It is said that Sri Shiva destroyed the demon Daruka here when he wasabout to kill His devotee Supriya. Daruka used to capture the worshippers ofGods, imprison them and harass them. Supriya was among the devotees imprisonedby Daruka. He continued to worship Sri Shiva in the prison which angered Darukaand brought his own downfall. On the request of his devotees, Sri Shiva stayedthere as the Nageswar Jyotirlingam.

वाराणस्यां तु विश्वेशंत्र्यंबकं गौतमीतटे ।

हिमालये तु केदारम्घृष्णेशं शिवालये ॥३॥

Varanasyam Tu Vishvesham Tryambakam Gautamittate |

Himalaye Tu Kedaram Ghrsnnesham Shivalaye ||3||

Viswanath Jyotirlingam:

The Viswanath Jyotirlingam is located in Varanasi (Kasi) inUttar Pradesh. It is said that Sri Shiva himself has created the city of Kasiand established the Viswanath Jyotirlingam there. The city of Kasi does not getdestroyed during Pralaya (the final destruction) since Sri Shiva holds it onhis trident. It is also said that those who die in Kasi attain liberation sinceSri Shiva Himself gives the Taraka Mantra to the dying person.

Tryambakeswar Jyotirlingam :

The Tryambakeswar Jyotirlingam is located on the banks ofGautami Ganga (near Nasik) in Maharastra. It is said that sage Gautama didsevere penance in the Brahmagiri hills to bring river Ganga there. Pleased withhis penance, Sri Shiva granted his prayer and requested Devi Ganga to bringdown the river there. The river is known as Godavari or Gautami Ganga. On therequest of Devi Ganga and other gods, Sri Shiva stayed there as theBhimashankar Jyotirlingam.

Kedareswar Jyotirlingam :

The Kedareswar Jyotirlingam is located in the Himalayas(Kedarnath) in Uttarkhand. It is said that Sri Shiva gave darshan to thePandavas here and absolved them of the sins of killing their kith and kin inthe battle of Kurukshetra. It is also said that Nara and Narayana, twoincarnations of Sri Vishnu did severe penance here and got the boon from SriShiva to reside there as a Jyotirlingam. On the request of the devotees, LordShiva stayed there as the Kedareswar Jyotirlingam.

Grishneswar Jyotirlingam:

The Grishneswar Jyotirlingam is located in Shivalaya nearEllora in Maharastra. It is said that Lord Shiva restored the son of Ghusmahere who was killed by his step-mother Sudeha and thrown in a lake. Sudeha didnot have any child and asked his husband Sudharma to marry her sister Ghusma.When a son was born of Ghusma, Sudeha became extremely jealous of her. Sudharmaand Ghusma were devout worshippers of Sri Shiva. They used to make Shiva Lingamout of clay and immerse them in a lake after worship. They continued theirworship even on the day their son was killed thinking that He (Shiva) who hasgiven them the son will take care of him also. After worship, when theyimmersed the Shiva Lingam in the lake, Sri Shiva appeared and restored theirdead son from beneath the lake. On the request of Ghusma, Sri Shiva alsoforgave Sudeha and stayed there as the Grishneswar Jyotirlingam. The lake isrenamed as Shivalaya.

एतानि ज्योतिर्लिङ्गानिसायंप्रातः पठेन्नरः ।

सप्तजन्मकृतं पापंस्मरणेन विनश्यति ॥४॥

Etaani Jyotirlingani Sayampratah Patthennarah |

Saptajanmakrtam Papam Smarannena Vinashyati ||4||