Somnath Temple

Somnath Temple – First among the twelve Aadi Jyotirlings of India.

Somnath Temple or the Somnath Jyotirlinga Temple at Somnath is one of the holy twelve Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva.this temple is situated in the state of Gujarat in the city of Prabhas Patan.

Somnath Temple is believed to be among the oldest temples present in India. The mention of Somnath Temple is found in the ancient inscriptions and texts of Bhagavat Gita, Rig Veda, Shivpuran, Skandpuran, and so on.

Somnath Temple holds a special place as a pilgrimage in these texts for ages in the Hindu Religion. the place of building this temple is on the confluence of three rivers, known as Triveni Sangam of Kapila, Saraswati, and Hiran.

Somnath Temple

image source – courtesy

Somnath temple Gujarat – Brief Information

The Somnath Temple is honey coloured and can be seen from a distance due to its magnificent structure.

It is believed that Lord Shiva had appeared here in the form of a fiery column of light. The waves for the Arabian sea come to touch the feet of this temple and becomes pious.

The age of this temple has not been evaluated correctly to date bit evidence of its existence even before 649 BC has been found.

The temple has held strong its position against time as well. The temple was looted and attempts to destroy it was done several times by the Mughal rulers.

It is believed that there were as many as 17 attacks in total by Mohammad Ghazni, Alauddin Khilji, and Aurangzeb. Each time they found some gold.

Shree Somnath jyotirling temple history

History of the temple: it is said that the temple was originally made by Somraj the Moon God. It is believed to have been made of gold at that time.

Later it was made with silver by Ravana and then Krishna made it with Wood, and after that, it was made in stone by Bhimdev.

Restoration of Somnath Temple

The present-day structure and complex is the one that had been recreated in the year 1951 under the restoration work of the heritage site.

Sardar Vallabhai Patel was the person who initiated the work of reconstruction and revival of this holy temple. The temple attracts millions of devotees each year. They throng the temple throughout the year alike.

Somnath Temple architecture

The structure that can be seen now is a replica of the original and based on the traditional designs themselves. It is cream colored and there are small sculptures on the coastal side.

There is a large black Shiva Lingam at the center of the 12 sacred shrines in the complex. This main Shiva Lingam is known as the holy Jyotirlinga.

There are different forms of Natraja the dancing form of Lord Shiva. the flag on the top of the temple has the symbols of Nandi and Trishul drawn on them.

How to reach Somnath Temple:

The place is very well connected by road and rail. One can reach there by road as it is well connected to the cities around.

The closest one is Veraval at 7 km. The other cities are at a distance of 889 km for Mumbai, 400kms for Ahemdabad, 122 for Porbandar, and Junagarh at 85 km. By rail, the approach will be through Veraval, which is the closest rail station at a distance of only 6 km.

There are regular trains from across India from cities like Mumbai and Ahemdabad. By air one can reach Dui airport. It is the closest to the temple at a distance of 65 km from the temple.

Best time to visit Somnath Temple

Though the temple is open all the year round and devotees throng here in every season, but there are certain special occasions as well.

You must prefer to go in the months of October to February when the weather is cool.

Shivratri in the month of February or March is the most celebrated time for the devotees of Lord Shiva. The temple is decorated and is worth visiting.

There Another special time is that of the Kartik Purnima which comes close to Diwali. There are enthusiasm and religious spirit in the air. All the people are so full of happiness and spirituality.

Somnath temple timings

  • The timings for Darshan are from 6 am to 9:30 pm every day.
  • The special aarti timings are at 7 am in the morning, at 12 noon and 7 pm in the evening.
  • There is also a special light and sound show in the evening at 7:45 pm daily.

Somnath temple trust accommodation

Please visit Somnath temple trust website for details. You can perform Online Pooja, give donation, do room booking, and do a live darshan. There are many other information which you can get from this website. Please refer to below for links

Shri Somnath Trust websitehttps://somnath.org/
somnath temple trust accommodation online bookinghttps://booking.somnath.org/GuestHouse/
Somnath Temple Live Darshanhttps://somnath.org/Home/Live-Darshan

Places to see near Somnath Temple

There is a museum in the complex of the temple that has the old stones carved in the natural form. They may seem like clutters but they are the original stones of the temple.

There is a collection of seashells and pottery shards. There is also a unique collection of water from different rivers and sea from around the world. those found here are from the river Danube, Nile, Tigris, Murray, St. Lawrence, and the seawater from New Zealand and Tasmania.

Another important spot is the Bhalka teerth. It is believed to be the same place where Lord Krishna was mistaken for a deer and injured by an arrow as he was sleeping in the deerskin. There is a Sun Temple in the complex as well.

There is Somnath beach just behind the temple premises. There is clean sand and has a mesmerizing view. One can enjoy a camel ride and have coconut water.

Summary

You must plan a trip to this sacred Somnath Temple. It is bound to blow your mind with the unique architecture and design of the premises. There is clear sand and not very deep seawater. So it is ideal for a family visit.

Make sure to have an advance booking in the hotel where you stay so that you can get the best spot to enjoy the sunset and sunrise.

During festive times, there are numerous devotees in the area. Be aware of the route you shall be following. There are tour packages available to enjoy the area to the fullest. There are numerous places to visit in the area.

Plan a trip in the winter season to be able to have a long time in the open and enjoy.

You may also like : Famous temple of Amritsar


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Shri kashi vishwanath temple

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh

वाराणस्यां तु विश्वेशं त्र्यम्बकं गौतमीतटे।

The Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh is home to the Vishwanath Jyotirlinga shrine, which is perhaps the most sacred of Hindu shrines. It is also one of the Padal Petra Stalam of Vada Naadu mentioned in Thevaaram.

The Kashi Vishwanath Temple is situated in Varanasi, the holiest city for Hindus, where a Hindu is expected to make a pilgrimage at least once in his life, and if possible, also pour the remains of cremated ancestors on the River Ganges. The temple stands on the western bank of the holy river Ganges, and is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas.

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple

In fact, it is a place where Shakti peeta and Jyotirlingam are together. It is the holiest of all Shiva temples. The main deity is known by the name Vishwanath or Vishweshwara meaning Ruler of the universe.

The temple town, is considered the oldest living city in the world, with 3500 years of documented history, is also called Kashi.

 It is believed that Banaras is the site at which the first Jyotirlinga manifested its supremacy over other gods, broke through the earth’s crust and flared towards heaven. This temple is said to be the dearest to Lord Shiva, and the people believe that those who die here achieve liberation.

image source

Many believe that Shiva himself resided here and is the giver of liberation and happiness. This temple has been rebuilt several times but always continued to hold its ultimate significance. 


History of Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple

The Kashi Vishwanath temple has stood the test of time and politics. It’s tough to date it, but the temple finds a mention in the Hindu “puranas”. The Kashi temple was first razed to the ground by the army of Qutb-ud-din Aibak in 1194 AD when he defeated the Raja of Kannauj.

It was rebuilt again during Iltutmish’s reign but was brought down again. It was rebuilt again by Raja Mann Singh under Akbar’s patronage. But local Hindus boycotted the temple because the Raja had allowed Mughals to marry with his family. Nevertheless, the temple was further restored by Raja Torad Mal.

A few decades later, the temple would be razed again, this time by Aurangzeb, who built the Gyanvapi Mosque in its place. Located within the temple is a small well called the Jnana Vapi (or Gyanvapi). It is said that the priest of the temple jumped in the well with the shivling to protect it from invaders. What can be confirmed though is that at least part of the premises of the original temple were incorporated into the mosque. Some claim that the former temple can still be seen in the foundation, columns and rear parts of the mosque.

The temple, as it stands today, was finally built by Maharani Ahilyabai Holkar a Maratha ruler who constructed the present temple adjacent to the mosque circa 1780.


Legend of Shri Kashi Vishwanath temple

The story goes that once Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu got into an argument over the superiority of their powers. Lord Shiva stepped in as a mediator and transformed himself into an endless pillar of light, or the jyotirlinga, and asked them to find the end of this shaft of brilliance.

While Lord Vishnu conceded defeat, Lord Brahma cunningly lied and said he had found the end. Lord Shiva was furious and cursed that Bramha would henceforth have no place in Hindu religious ceremony. Meanwhile, the places where Shiva’s light pierced through the Earth came to be known as the 12 jyotirlingas and Kashi Vishwanath is one of them.

While the shivling is housed in a silver altar within the main temple, there are also smaller shrines located within the complex of the temples devoted to other Gods.


Importance of Shri Kashi Vishwanath temple

The Kashi Vishwanath temple is one of the holiest places of worship in the Hindu religion and gets anything from a few thousand to a few lakh devotees every day.

Some scriptures claim that several saints and religious leaders such as Swami Dayananda Saraswati, Sathya Sai Baba and Guru Nanak have also visited this temple.

It is believed that a visit to the Kashi Vishwananth temple and bath in the Ganga is the path to moksha or salvation. And if one dies a natural death within the temple, then Lord Shiva himself will speak the mantra of salvation in the ears of that person.


The main Kashi Vishwanath temple among Dwadash Jyotirlingas is in Kashi from Anadikal.

This place is the initial place of Shiva and Parvati, hence Avimukteshwar is considered as the first gender in the form of Adiling.

It is also mentioned in the Mahabharata and the Upanishads. The Vishwanath temple, which was renovated by King Harishchandra in the 11th century BC, was renovated by Emperor Vikramaditya.

You may also like : The 12 Jyotirlingas


Shri Kashi Vishwanath Live Darshan

Have a look at this Live Darshan Link of Shri Kashi Vishwanath Ji

You can also book tickets online. Check the link below

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Mandir Trust

Click here =>> to visit the website

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Mandir Trust

Hope you liked the information provided.

Have a blessed darshan!

skumar@mytempletrips

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jyotirlingas

Jyotirlinga temples- The 12 most sacred abodes of Lord Shiva

Om Namah Shivay friends. Mahadev or the Lord Shiva is also called as “Devon ke Dev – Mahadev” ( देवों के देव महादेव) . We all probably know that there are 12 Jyotirlinga temples as per Hindu texts.

But what are these Jyotirlinga temples and what is the legend behind them? Where are they located and Why it is different from other Shiva Lingas. Let us try to find answers to all these questions today.

Why Jyotirlinga temples called Jyotirlinga?

We are probably too small and too naive to define a Jyotirlinga. It is the universe. It is the life. It is the Shiva himself present around us.

But let us try to understand the meaning of this word. Jyotirlinga means the Radiance of the Linga the symbol of Lord Shiva. Jyotirlingas are shrines where Lord Shiva has said to have manifested himself as a fiery column of light.

Lord Shiva Statue Jyotirlinga temples

Jyotirlingas are the holiest shrine dedicated to the worship of Lord Shiva. The word is a combination of 2 word – Jyoti which means light and Linga which is Sanskrit means a Symbol . ie. The Symbol of Lord Shiva. Hence Jyotirlingam mean the “Light of Lord Shiva” or the “Radiance Of Lord Shiva”.

Difference between Jyotirlinga and Shiva Linga

The basic difference between a Jyotirlinga and other Shiva linga is that the 12 Jyotirlingas are said to be ‘Swayambhu’ or self-manifested while all other Shiva lingas are established by man (i.e man made).

It is said that these 12 famous Jyotirlingas are places where Lord Shiva appeared in the form of light (Jyothi) and a Shiva Linga was formed there.

It is believed that a person is pure, is a Shiva Bhakt and one who has attained a certain degree of spirituality sees these Shiva Lingas and it is seen as a column of fire piercing through the earth.

These Jyotirlingas has been there from time immemorial and holds a special belief in the Hinduism.

List of 12 Jyotirlinga temples

12 Jyotirlinga temples in India are:

NamePlaceState
Sri Somnath JyotirLingSaurashtraGujarat
Sri Mallikarjun jyotirlingSrisailamAndhra Pradesh
Sri Mahakaleshwar jyotirlingUjjainMadhya Pradesh
Sri Omkareshwar jyotirlingmamaleswaraMadhya Pradesh
Sri Baijnath jyotirlingDevgharBihar
Sri Nageswar jyotirlingDarukavanamGujarat
Sri Kedareswar jyotirlingKedarnathUttrakhand
Sri Trambakeswar jyotirlingNashik Maharashtra
Sri Rameshwar jyotirlingRameshwaramTamil Nadu
Sri Bhimashankar jyotirlingDakiniMaharashtra
Sri Visweswar jyotirlingVaranasiUttarpradesh
Sri Ghrishneswar jyotirlingDevasrovarMaharashtra
List of 12 Jyotirlingas
  • Out of 12, two jyotirlinga are on the sea shore
  • Three jyotirlinga are on river banks
  • four jyotirlinga are located on the mountains and
  • three jyotirlinga are located in villages / Cities

Legend behind Jyotirlinga temples

The Legend of the “Jyotirlinga” is mentioned in the Shiva Purana and it goes as below.

Once Lord Vishu and Lord Brahma were debating over who is supreme. Lord Shiva was witnessing this fight.

Lord Shiva then produced a vast pillar of light and asked both of them to find the end of the light in both directions.

Lord Brahma lied that he had found the end, and hence Lord Vishnu accepted defeat. Lord Shiva got angry at this and cursed Lord Brahma that even though he is the creator of the Universe, he won’t be worshipped.

It is believed that the Jyotirlingas have appeared from that infinite pillar of light produced by Lord Shiva.

So the Jyotirlinga is the for of Lord Shiva himself.

It is believed that originally there were 64 Jyotirlingas out of which these 12 are most important ones.

Each of the twelve Jyotirlinga sites take the name of the presiding deity and each is considered to be different manifestation of Lord Shiva

All the 12 , Jyotirlingas are located at geographically and astronomically significant points

Sri Jyotirlinga Stuti Mantra

सौराष्ट्रे सोमनाथं च श्रीशैले मल्लिकार्जुनम्. उज्जयिन्यां महाकालमोंकारं परमेश्वरम्॥
केदारं हिमवत्पृष्ठे डाकियां भीमशंकरम्. वाराणस्यांच विश्वेशं त्र्यम्बकं गौतमीतटे॥
वैद्यनाथं चिताभूमौ नागेशं दारूकावने. सेतूबन्धे च रामेशं घुश्मेशंच शिवालये॥
द्वादशैतानि नामानि प्रातरूत्थाय यः पठेत्. सप्तजन्मकृतं पापं स्मरणेन विनश्यति॥
यं यं काममपेक्ष्यैव पठिष्यन्ति नरोत्तमाः. तस्य तस्य फलप्राप्तिर्भविष्यति न संशयः॥


Lord Shiva is worshiped as Ekambareswarar or Ekambaranathar, and the Shiva Lingam is known as Prithvi lingam here. His consort Parvati is depicted as Gowridevi Amman. Ekambareswarar temple is one of the five temple of pancha bhoota sthalam temples and hence a very important center of Shiva Worship. Read more …..

How was Sri Kedarnath Jyotirlinga temple formed?

There is an interesting story of Shri Kedarnath.

Shri Kedarnath Jyotirlinga is situated in Kedarnath in the state of Uttarakhand. Situated in the Himalayas the ‘Kedarnath Temple’ revered as one of the highest amongst all the twelve Jyotirlingas.

It is said that pleased with the Pandavas, Lord Shiva appeared in the form of a Jyotirlinga at this place.

Hence the temple was originally built by the Pandavas and was later rebuilt by the our revered guru, Shri Adi Shankaracharya Ji.

Closing Thoughts

These were the information related to all the twelve Jyotirlinga. Hope you liked this article. These Jyotirlingas are very powerful and that is why is regarded as the most sacred place of worship.

Try to visit as many of them as possible and get the blessing by Lord Shiva himself. Also reciting the Dwadash Jyotirlinga Strotra is very valuable and helps in getting rid of past lives sins.

So please do visit some of these Jyotirlingas when you have the possibility. Om Namah Shivay!

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