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4th Jyotirling-Omkaareshwar

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4-Omkaareshwar Temple

Omkaareshwar is the 4th Jyotirling from among the Dwaadash Jyotirling. It is situated on the Maandhaataa hills in Vindhya Mountains of Madhya Pradesh. It stands on an island named Maandhaataa or Shiv Puree formed by Narmadaa River. The shape of the island resembles that of the visual representation of the letter Om. There are two temples here, one of Omkareswar and one of Amareshwar (Amaleshwar or Mamaleshwar). The Lord of Vindhyaachal established this Ling so that he can also be as revered as Mount Sumeru. Pleased with his Tap, when Shiv appeared before him he requested Shiv to stay there, so Shiv stayed there.

In the ancient times it was called as Shiv Puree. The mythology of temple dates back to the Krit Yug. This is the imaginary map of Omkaar Parikramaa. Omkareshwar Kshetra Parikramaa is the very important thing to do in Omkaareshwar tour. The Parikramaa route starts from Omkaareshwar Temple and completes after surrounding the hill. Aadi Shankaraachaarya also did Parikramaa when he visited Omkaareshwar Jyotirling. While doing Parikramaa, he met his Guru Sri Govindapaad and learned A-Dwait from him. We can see that place at the end of Parikramaa. It is nearer to Omkaareshwar Temple. First of all we will reach Trivenee Sangam. Here we can take holy bath. Just after Trivenee Sangam there is a Temple of Rin Mukteshwar. In this temple people offer Red gram to Lord Shiv. After that the journey is through forest. It is very pleasant and nice to see in Winter season.

After crossing this forest there is a temple of Bholenaath. It is the mid point of Parikramaa. The Shiv Ling in this temple is very big and it is made of Narmadaa Van. After that we reach Durgaa Deve Temple. By crossing Durga Temple one enters into a deep forest. In the forest there are many ancient monuments and temples which are under the control of Indian Archeological department. In the way of Parikramaa we see so many Saadhu belonging to different traditions. If we are lucky we can see deers and peacocks in the route. The view of Narmadaa river is very beautiful with the bridges and the Project. The last stop is the cave of Guru Govindapada in this Parikramaa.

Maandhaataa was a great Emperor of the Ikshwaaku clan who ruled this land. He did great penance in this land and there is an Aashram called Maandhaataa Aashram here. It is told that he built 108 temples around Omkaareshwar. River Narmadaa flows here around the Maandhaataa hill in the form of an Om (Omkaar). This Jyotirling is situated by the banks of Narmadaa River in the Maalavaa area. Gods of all the Gods Lord Shiv's Omkaareshwar Ling is situated on the mountain Maandhaataa. The Shiv Puraan speaks of the greatness of Omkaareshwar and Mamaleshwar. The two sons of the Sun dynasty King Maandhaataa - Ambareesh and Muchukund, practiced severe penance and austerities here to please Lord Shiv. They had also performed great religious sacrifices here, because of this the mountain is named Maandhaataa.

Before entering the temple one has to pass through 2 rooms. Amongst the 12 Jyotirling Omkaareshwar is undoubtedly considered the main name but another name which often comes in this context is Mamaleshwar. Not only the name but the existence of these two are also thoroughly different. The temple of Mamaleshwar is situated in the South of the river Narmadaa, but both the forms of Shiv have been counted as one. The Omkaareshawar Temple is built in the North Indian style of architecture, with high spires. Devotees consider worship to Panchmukhaa Ganesh, to be very auspicious. There is a shrine for Annapoornaa also. Shiv Ling of various sizes are sold in great numbers in this place.

Story of Omkaareshwar
Once upon a time Naarad Jee visited Vindhya Parvat. Vindhya gave Naarad a warm welcome and asked about the world as Naarad used to continuously visit all the important places. Naarad Jee sighed deeply. Vindhya asked what was the reason. Naarad Jee replied that though all the Mountains were credited with their own special features such as Meru Parvat was proud of his possessions and was boasting of his greatness. After telling all this to Vindhya, Naarad Jee left without a word. Vindhya was annoyed with this discussion and felt jealous about Meru Parvat and wanted to become greater than Meru. Then Vindhya did a great penance for Lord Shiv for his desire. Lord Shiv blessed him and appeared here as Omkaareshwar and (Mamaleshwar) Amaleshwar and gave the boon of growing, but without hindering Shiv devotees. But Vindhya did not stop growing, and even obstructed the Sun and the Moon.

Then Sage Agastya Jee who was then living in Kaashee was called for help by all the deities on the advice of Lord Vishnu. Agastya Jee along with his wife came to Vindhya, subdued its growth by saying it should not grow till he gets back there. And he never came back. He stayed in Shree Shail which is regarded as Dakshin Kaashee. So the Vindhya Parvat is still lying waiting for Agastya Jee to return.

On the sincere request of all the gods and the sages Lord Shiv made two parts of the ling. In one part he resided as the Pranav or Omkaar and assumed the form of Omkaareshwar and Bhagavaan Sadaashiv, Parameshwar, Amareshwar or Amaleshwar assumed form from the Paarthiv Ling. In other words, the Jyotirling split into two, and now there are two Shiv Ling - Omkaareswarar and Amaleshwar (Amareshwar). Lord Shiv came in the form of Mahaakaal out of the Ling that split and killed the demon. Therefore all those who pray to this Ling will never fear death and if their faith is true they will be out of the chakra of life and death.

The Omkaareshwar is not affixed to the ground, but is naturally installed there. There is always water around it. The significance of this Ling is that the Ling is not situated below the cupola. The idol of Lord Shiv is situated on the top of the Temple.



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Created and Maintained by Sushma Gupta
Created on March 15, 2003 and Updated on January 27, 2014