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A Jyotirlinga or Jyotirling or Jyotirlingam (Sanskrit: ) is a devotional

object representing the god Shiva. Jyoti means 'radiance' and lingam the
'mark or sign' of Shiva, or a symbol of the pineal gland Jyotir !ingam th"s
means the #he $adiant sign of #he Almighty. #here are t%elve traditional
Jyotirlinga shrines in &ndia.
&t is believed that !ord Shiva 'rst manifested himself as a Jyotirlinga on the
night of the Aridra (akshatra, th"s the special reverence for the Jyotirlinga.
#here is nothing to disting"ish the appearance, b"t it is believed that a
person can see these lingas as col"mns of 're piercing thro"gh the earth
after he reaches a higher level of spirit"al attainment.
)ontents
* !egend
+ Sanskrit Sloka
, #hirteen Jyotirlingas
- (otes
. $eferences
/ 01ternal links
!egend
According to 2iva 3ah4p"r45a, once 6rahma (the 7od of creation) and 8ishn"
(the 7od of 9reservation) had an arg"ment over s"premacy of creation.:*; #o
test them, Shiva pierced the three %orlds as a h"ge endless pillar of light, the
jyotirlinga. 8ishn" and 6rahma split their %ays to do%n%ards and "p%ards
respectively to 'nd the end of the light in either directions. 6rahma lied that
he fo"nd o"t the end, %hile 8ishn" conceded his defeat. Shiva appeared as a
second pillar of light and c"rsed 6rahma that he %o"ld have no place in
ceremonies %hile 8ishn" %o"ld be %orshipped till the end of eternity. #he
jyotirlinga is the s"preme partless reality, o"t of %hich Shiva partly appears.
#he jyothirlinga shrines th"s are places %here Shiva appeared as a 'ery
col"mn of light.:+;:,; <riginally there %ere believed to be /- jyothirlingas
%hile *+ of them are considered to be very a"spicio"s and holy.:*; 0ach of
the t%elve jyothirlinga sites take the name of the presiding deity, each
considered a di=erent manifestation of Shiva.:-; At all these sites, the
primary image is lingam representing the beginningless and endless Stambha
pillar, symboli>ing the in'nite nat"re of Shiva.:-;:.;:/; #he t%elve jyothirlinga
are Somnath in 7"jarat, 3allikarj"na at Srisailam in Andra 9radesh,
3ahakales%ar at ?jjain in 3adhya 9radesh, <mkaresh%ar in 3adhya 9radesh,
@edarnath in Aimalayas, 6himashankar in 3aharashtra, 8is%anath at
8aranasi in ?ttar 9radesh, #riambakesh%ar in 3aharashtra, 8aidyanath
Jyotirlinga at parali in maharashtra , A"ndha (agnath at A"ndha (agnath in
3aharashtra, $amesh%ar at $ames%aram in #amil (ad" and 7hr"shnesh%ar
at ellora near a"rangabad in 3aharashtra. @edarnath and 9ash"patinath
((epal) are considered half jyotirlingas co"nted together as one. #here is also
one ne% Jyotirlinga shrine B6h"banes%arC6h"banes%ariB temple at
3ath"rap"r, 9D<C 6alaramp"r, near S"ndarban, +- 9arganas (So"th), E.6.
Sanskrit Sloka
#he follo%ing sloka ( Fv4daGa JyotirliHga Stotram)
describes the *+ Jyotirlingas:
Sanskrit transliteration translation
!" # Sa"r4IJre Soman4thaK ca 2rLGaile
3allik4rj"nam Somanath in Sa"rashtra and 3allikarj"nam in ShriC
Shailam
$!% &'( ) ?jjayiny4K 3ah4k4lam <Hk4ram
AmaleGvaram 3ahakaal in ?jjain, <mkaresh%ar in Amlesh%ar
* ( + ,% - # 9araly4K 8aidyan4thaK ca M4kiny4K
6hLmaGaHkaram 8aidyanath in 9aralya and 6himashankaram in Fakinya
" .%/ " 0() Set"bandhe t" $4meGaK (4geGaK
F4r"k4vane $amesham ($amesh%aram) in Seth"bandh, (agesham
((agesh%ar) in Fara"kaC8ana
(1 " ('( 23. # 84r45asy4K t" 8iGveGaK #ryambakaK
7a"tamLtaJe 8ish%aC&sham (8ishvanath) in 8anarasi, #riambakam at
bank of the river 7a"tami
& " 4" ' () Aim4laye t" @ed4raK 7h"GmeGaK ca
2iv4laye @edar (@edarnath) in Aimalayas and 7"shmesh (7"shmesh%ar)
in Shivalaya (Shi%ar).
5 * 6 *7 %6# et4ni jyotirliHg4ni s4yaK pr4taN
paJhennaraN <ne %ho recites these Jyotirlingas every evening and
morning
8!%9 ** 1 (') saptajanmakOtaK p4paK smara5ena
vinaGyati is relieved of all sins committed in past seven lives.
5 ( * ( 7# eteG4K darGan4deva p4takaK naiva tiIJhati
<ne %ho visits these, gets all his %ishes f"l'lled
: -( ; " &'(6): karmakIayo bhavettasya yasya t"IJo
maheGvar4N and one's karma gets eliminated as 3ahesh%ara gets satis'ed
to the %orship.
#hirteen Jyotirlingas
#he names and the locations of *+ other Jyotirlingas are mentioned in the
Shiva 9"rana (2atar"dra SaPhit4, )h.-+D+C-). #hese shrines are:
Q Jyotirlinga &mage State !ocation Fescription
* Somnath Somanatha vie%C&&.J97 7"jarat 9rabhas 9atan,
Sa"rashtra Somnath is traditionally considered the 'rst pilgrimage site: the
F%adash Jyotirlinga pilgrimage begins %ith the Somnath #emple. #he temple,
that %as destroyed and reCb"ilt si1teen times, is held in reverence thro"gho"t
&ndia and is rich in legend, tradition, and history. &t is located at 9rabhas 9atan
(Somnath C 8eraval) in Sa"rashtra in 7"jarat.
+ 3allik4rj"na S%4mi SrisailamCtempleCentrance.jpg Andhra
9radesh Srisailam 3allik4rj"na, also called 2rLGaila, is located on a
mo"ntain on the river @rishna.:R;2rLGailaK, in @"rnool Fistrict in $ayalaseema
enshrines 3allikarj"na in an ancient temple that is architect"rally and
sc"lpt"rally rich. &t is a place %here Shakti peetha and Jyotirlingam are
together. Adi Shankara composed his Sivananda !ahiri here.:citation needed;.
, 3ahakalesh%ar 3ahakal #emple ?jjain.J97 3adhya 9radesh
?jjain 3ahakal, ?jjain (or Avanti) in 3adhya 9radesh is home to the
3ahakalesh%ar Jyotirlinga temple. #he !ingam at 3ahakal is believed to be
S%ayambh", the only one of the *+ Jyotirlingams to be so. &t is also the only
one facing so"th and also the temple to have a Shree Santra perched "pside
do%n at the ceiling of the 7arbhagriha (%here the Shiv !ingam sits). &t is a
place %here Shakti peeta and Jyotirlingam are together.
- <mkaresh%ar <mkaresh%ar #emple T*.jpg 3adhya 9radesh
&sland in the (armada $iver, <mkaresh%ar <mkaresh%ar is in
3adhya 9radesh on an island in the (armada $iver and home to a Jyotirlinga
shrine and the 3amalesh%ar temple.
. @edarnath @edarnath #emple.jpg ?ttarakhand @edarnath
@edarnath in ?ttarakhand is revered as the northernmost and the
closest Jyotirlinga to !ord Shiva's eternal abode of 3o"nt @ailash. &t is
considered to be *D+ jyotirlinga along %ith 9ash"patinath in (epal. @edarnath
forms a part of the smaller )har Fham pilgrimage circ"it of Aind"ism.
@edarnath, nestled in the sno%Cclad Aimalayas, is an ancient shrine, rich in
legend and tradition. &t is accessible only by foot, and only for si1 months a
year. &t is also one of the 9adal 9etra Stalam of 8ada (aad" mentioned in
#hevaaram. #he other half of @edarnath is 9ash"patinath in (epal. Shiva
ass"med the form of %ild boar and dived into the earth at @edarnath to
emerge at 9ash"patinath. 9"re ghee is applied at @edarnath lingam as the
boar %as inj"red.
/ 6himashankar 6himashankar.jpg 3aharashtra
6himashankar 6himashankar is very m"ch debated. #here is a
6himashankara temple near 9"ne (pict"red) in 3aharashtra, %hich %as
referred to as Faakini co"ntry, b"t @aship"r in ?ttarakhand %as also referred
to as Faakini co"ntry in ancient days and a 6himashkar #emple kno%n as
Shree 3otesh%ar 3ahadev is present there. Another 6himashankar is in the
Sahyadri range of 3aharashtra. #he 6himashankar temple:U; near 7"%ahati,
Assam is the jyotirlinga according to Sivap"ran.
According to B!&(7A 9?$A(B, 6himasankar temple in 6himp"r near 7"n"p"r
of $ayagada district in So"th <rissa is also believed as 6himasankar
Jyotirlinga, %hich is sit"ated at the %estern part of the holy 3ahendragiri
mo"ntains and at the river bank of 3ahendratanaya(%hich is also believed as
the Faakini area by many historian), %as e1cavated in the year *VR-, having
W"adrang"lar Shakti aro"nd the !inga and decorated by a ?pavita as per the
p"ran.:V;
R @ashi 8ish%anath #emple @ashi 8ish%anath temple.jpg ?ttar
9radesh 8aranasi @ashi 8ish%anath #emple in 8aranasi, ?ttar 9radesh
is home to the 8ish%anath Jyotirlinga shrine, %hich is perhaps the most
sacred of Aind" shrines. &t is also one of the 9adal 9etra Stalam of 8ada
(aad" mentioned in #hevaaram. #he temple is sit"ated in 8aranasi the
holiest e1isting place of Aind"s, %here at least once in life a Aind" is
e1pected to do pilgrimage, and if possible, also po"r the remains of cremated
ancestors on the $iver 7anges. #he temple stands on the %estern bank of the
holy river 7anges, and is one of the t%elve Jyotirlingas. &n fact, it is a place
%here Shakti peeta and Jyotirlingam are together. &t is the holiest of all Shiva
temples. #he main deity is kno%n by the name 8ish%anath or 8ish%esh%ara
meaning $"ler of the "niverse. #he temple to%n, %hich claims to be the
oldest living city in the %orld, %ith ,.TT years of doc"mented history, is also
called @ashi.
U #rimbakesh%ar Shiva #emple #rimbakesh%ar Shiva #emple, #rimbak,
(ashik district.jpg 3aharashtra #rimbakesh%ar, (ear (ashik
#rimbakesh%ar #emple, near (asik in 3aharashtra, is a Jyotirlinga
shrine associated %ith the origin of the 7odavari $iver.
V 8aidyanath #emple 6aba dham.jpg Jharkhand Feoghar
6aijanath Jyotirlinga #emple(also kno%n as vaidyanath Fham)is located
in Feoghar, JAA$@AA(F . &n the month of Shravana millions of devotee visit
the temple. 6holebaba darshan d"ring Shravan month attracts devotees from
across &ndia and overseas.
&t is believed that once $avan %orshipped Shiva for years and reW"ested his
god (Shiva) to come to !anka . Shiva manifested as shivaling and asked
$avan to not to p"t do%n any%here "ntil he takes it to !anka. 8ishn"
intercepted $avana in bet%een and convinced him to keep it for sometime.
Since then shiva resides as 8aijanath in Feoghar.
*T (ageshvara Jyotirlinga Jagesh%ar main.J97 7"jarat
F%araka (ageshvara Jyotirlinga is one of the *+ Jyotirlinga shrines
mentioned in the Shiva 9"rana (2atar"dra SaPhit4,)h.-+D+C-, referred as
Bnagesham dar"kavaneB). (ageshvara is believed as the 'rst Jyotirlinga on
the earth. #here are three major shrines in &ndia %hich are believed as
identical to this Jyotirlinga. #hose are the Jagesh%ar temple near Almora in
?ttarakhand state, the (agesh%ara temple near F%araka in 7"jarat state
and the (agnath temple in A"ndha in 3aharashtra state.
** $amesh%ar $amanatharCtemple.jpg #amil (ad" $ames%aram
$ames%aram in #amil (ad" is home to the vast $amalinges%arar
Jyotirlinga temple and is revered as the so"thernmost of the t%elve Jyotirlinga
shrines of &ndia. &t enshrines the $ameGvara (B!ord of $amaB) pillar.:R; &t is
also one of the 9adal 9etra Stalam of 9andya (aad" mentioned in #hevaaram.
*+ 7rishnesh%ar 7h"shmesh%ar mahadev.jpg 3aharashtra
A"rangabad 7rishnesh%ar Jyotirlinga is one of the *+ Jyotirlinga
shrines mentioned in the Shiva 9"rana (kotir"dra sahinta,)h.,+C,, referred
as B7rishnesh%ar JyotirlingaB). 7rishnesh%ar is believed as the !ast or *+th
(t%elfth) Jyotirlinga on the earth. #his pilgrimage site is located at a village
called 8er"l %hich lies at a distance of ** km from Fa"latabad and ,T km
from A"rangabad. &t lies at a close pro1imity to the 0llora caves.
*, Shivadol Sivasagar Assam &(F&A'S #allest Shiva
#emple &n Sivasagar Assam. #he Sivadol (Assamese: <=>?@AB) (Aindi: (,)
stands on the bank of 6orp"kh"ri tank in the heart of Sivasagar, Assam.:*; &t
%as b"ilt in *R,- by 6ar $aja Ambika, W"een of Ahom king S%argadeo Siba
Singha. #he Sivadol (dol means temple in Assamese) is believed to be the
tallest Shiva temple in &ndia. &ts height is *T- feet (,+ m) and the perimeter is
*V. ft (.V m) at the base. &t is capped by an eight feet high goldenCdome.
0ach year d"ring the Shivaratri, a h"ge mela (fair) is organised in the temple
gro"nd and pilgrims from all over &ndia arrives here to o=er p"ja.
Some of the other major Shiva temples that are not listed as Jyotirlingas are
Amarnath in Jamm" and @ashmir, &ndia, 9ash"patinath in @athmand", (epal