Shiv Jee | Shiv Temples

Om Namah Shivaaya
Shiv Temples

Home | Shiv | Shiv-Temples


Previous | Next

Murudeshwar Temple of Shiv
Taken from    Murudeshwar in Wikipedia
See its 360 degree image at
Temple's own Website -

Murudeshwar is a town in the Bhatkal Taaluk of Uttar Kannad District in the state of Karnaatak, India. "Murudeshwar" is another name of Shiv. This Temple is famous for the world's second tallest Shiv statue, 123 feet (36 m) high, as the tallest statue is located in (Nepaal) at Kailaashnaaath Temple, and also the tallest Raaj Gopuram (249 feet). A huge towering statue of Lord Shiv, visible from great distances, is in the Temple complex and is erected by an Indian Kamal Jain. which has been built out of a single stone found right there in the sea! The statue looks to be at least 100 feet high but carved with so much attention to detail - the long shapely fingers, intricately knotted hair, the serpent coiled around its neck and the tiger skin he's seated on. This beach town lies on the coast of the Arabian Sea and is also famous for the Murudeshwar Temple. It is 180 Kms from Mangalore and is situated on West coast of India.

This Temple is built on the Kanduk Hill which is surrounded on three sides by the waters of the Arabian Sea. It has a 20-storied Gopuram, supposed to be tallest in the world, is constructed at the Temple. Two life-size elephants in concrete stand guard at the steps leading to the Temple. The entire Temple and Temple complex, including the 249 feet tall Raaj Gopuram, which is considered the tallest Gopuram in the world, was constructed to its present form by businessman and philanthropist RN Shetty.

The Temple is entirely modernized with exception of the Sanctum Sanctorum which is still dark and retains its composure. The Main deity is Sri Mridesa Linga, also called Murudeshwar. The linga is believed to be a piece of the original Atma Linga and is about 2feet below ground level. The devotees performing special Sevaa like Abhishek, Rudraabhishek, Rathotsav etc can view the deity by standing before the threshold of the Sanctum and the Lingam is illuminated by oil lamps held close by the priests. The Lingam is essentially a rough rock inside a hollowed spot in the ground. Entry into the Sanctum is banned for all devotees.

Legend Related to Murudeshwar
Read also  Mahaabaleshwar Temple   for this story

The origin of the name Murudeshwar dates to the time of Raamaayan. The Hindu gods attained immortality and invincibility by worshipping a divine Lingam called the Aatm Ling. The Lankaa King Raavan also wanted to attain immortality by obtaining the Aatm Ling. Since the Aatm Ling belonged to Lord Shiv, Raavan worshipped Shiv with devotion. Pleased by his prayers, Lord Shiv appeared before him and asked him what he wanted. By this time Naarad had asked Lord Vishnu to change Raavan's mind. As a result of this plot, Raavan asked Shiv for Goddess Paarvatee as his boon, and Lord Shiv offered him Paarvatee. On his way back to Lankaa Naarad told him that Shiv had not given real Paarvatee to him and that the real Paarvatee was in Paataal Lok.

So Raavan let off Paarvatee given by Shiv and went to Paataal and married a king's daughter thinking that she was Paarvatee. When he returned back to Lankaa and told his mother that he had brought Paarvatee, his mother asked for the Ling. Raavan then came to know that Vishnu had done all these tricks. Now Raavan went back and meditated a lot to please Lord Shiv. Lord Shiv appeared again and Raavan asked for his forgiveness. This time, Raavan requested his Aatm Ling as his boon. Lord Shiv agreed to give him the boon with a condition that it should never be placed on the ground. If the Aatm Ling was ever placed on the ground at all, all the powers would return to Lord Shiv again. Having obtained his boon, Raavan started back on his journey to Lankaa.

Naarad, who came to know of this incident, realized that with the Aatm Ling, Raavan would obtain immortality and create havoc on Earth, so this time he approached the Lord Ganesh and requested him to prevent the Aatm Ling from reaching Lankaa. Lord Ganesh knew that Raavan was a very devoted person who used to perform prayer ritual in the evening every day without fail. He decided to make use of this fact and came up with a plan to confiscate the Aatm Ling from Raavan.

As Raavan was nearing Gokarn, Lord Vishnu blotted the Sun to make it look like evening had appeared. Raavana now had to perform his evening rituals but was worried because with the Aatm Ling in his hands, he would not be able to do his rituals. At this time, Ganesh appeared there in the disguise of a Braahman boy came near him. Seeing him, Raavan requested him to hold the Aatm Ling until he performed his rituals, and asked him not to place it on the ground in any case. Ganesh struck a deal with him saying that he would call Raavan thrice, and if Raavan did not return within that time, he would place the Aatm Ling on the ground.

As predicted, before Raavan could return after completing his rituals, Ganesh had already placed the Aatm Ling on the ground. Vishnu then removed his illusion and it was daylight again. Raavan, realizing that he had been tricked, got really angry and tried to uproot and destroy the Ling but could not. Then he decided to destroy the covering of the Aatm Ling, and threw the case covering it to a place called Shejjeshwar, 23 miles away. Then he threw the lid of the case to a place called Guneshwar (now Gunavanteshwar) and Dhaareshwar, 10-12 miles away. Finally, he threw the cloth covering the Aatm Ling to a place called Mrideshwar in Kanduk-Giri (Kanduk Hill). Mrideshwar since then has been renamed to Murudeshwar.



Home | Shiv | Shiv-Temples


Previous | Next

Created and Maintained by Sushma Gupta
Created on March 15, 2003 and Updated on February 12, 2013