South India Holiday Tours Karnataka Tours Famous Temples of Karnataka Mahabaleshwar Temple Gokarna, Mahabaleshwar Shiva Temple
Mahabaleshwar Temple Gokarna| Mahabaleshwar Shiva Temple
The Mahabaleshwar temple is located in Gokarna, a sacred pilgrimage site in the Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka. One of the seven Mukti Sthalas of Karnataka, Gokarna is also known for its idyllic beaches and serene landscape. The Mahabaleshwar Shiva temple is regarded to be next in sanctity only to the Vishwanath Siva Temple in Varanasi and is often called the Dakshina Kashi.
The Mahabaleshwar temple enshrines the Aatma Lingam of Lord Shiva. Legend has it that the holy Lingam was given by Shiva to King Ravana to make his kingdom an invincible fortress. Varuna and Ganesha tricked Ravana into placing the Lingam here and in spite of the might exerted by Ravana (Maha Bala) the Lingam remained rooted to the ground.
The six foot tall Shiva Lingam, enclosed in a square Saligrama Peetham, can be seen only once in 40 years, when the Ashta bandana Kumbhahishekam is performed. It is customary here to have a dip in the sea and then worship a Shivalingam made out of sand, before worshipping at the temple. Maha Sivaratri is of great significance in this shrine located in idyllic surroundings.
Also located around Gokarna are Sejjeshwara, Gunavanteshwara, Murudeshwara and Dhareshwara. These four temples along with Mahabaleshwara are known as the Pancha Maha Kshetras.
Mahabaleshwar Temple, one of the seven Muktisthala shrines in Karnataka, is located at Gokarna in Uttara Kannada District. The Atmalinga of this temple attracts thousands of devotees. It is a huge shivling, which according to myth, got rooted here when lord Ganesh set it down on the ground. The atmalinga was granted as a boon to Ravana by Lord Shiva, which would make him all powerful. The gods who were terrified at this, approached Lord Ganesh to save them. Lord Ganesh managed to secure the atmalinga from Ravana and cleverly put it on the ground where it got fixed and could not be pulled out. The pull exerted by Ravana, is said to have caused the shivling to resemble the shape of a cow's ear and hence the name Gokarna (cow's ear).
The six foot tall shivling can be seen only once in 40 years, when the Ashtabandhana Kumbhabhishekam is performed. A temple enshrining Lord Ganesh is located nearby. Apart from the chief deity, the temple houses the idols of Gokarnanayagi, Chandikeswara, Aadi Gokarneswara and Dattatreya.
Before entering the temple, devotees usually have a bath in the sea and worship a shivling made out of sand. Mahashivratri is of great significance in this shrine. Kollur Mookambika Temple is located near Gokarna. Also located around Gokarna are Sejjeshwara, Gunavanteshwara, Murudeshwara and Dhareshwara temples. These four temples along with Mahabaleshwara are known as the Pancha Maha Kshetras.
To access this place Mangalore Airport is the convenient airport. Mangalore Central Railway Station and Mangalore Bus Station are also nearby boarding points.
Gokarna is a Hindu pilgrim center of South India. It is one of the most worshiped and celebrated pilgrimage in the coast of Karnataka. The Mahabaleshwar Temple, Gokarna is one of the famous places of Gokarna visited by a large number of devotees every year.
The Mahabaleshwar Temple, Gokarna of Karnataka is regarded as one of the seven Muktisthala temples of Karnataka. This temple is resided by a huge Shivlinga which is called the Atmalinga. According to the Hindu mythology, Lord Ganesha brought this linga here and it got rooted when he kept it on the ground. This linga was supposed to be given to Ravana by Lord Shiva which would make him very powerful. The other Gods were horrified thinking the result of it. Thus they begged before Lord Ganesha to help them. Then Ganesha took away the linga from the reach of Ravana and then fixed it on the ground so that nobody can pull it out.
One can have a glimpse of this 6 feet tall linga of the Mahabaleshwar Temple of Gokarna during the occasion Ashtabandhana Kumbhabhishekam that too once in 40 years. As the Mahabaleshwar Temple, Gokarna holds the legacy and heroic deed of Lord Ganesha so there is a Ganesha temple located nearby the main shrine. Other than these two Gods, the Mahabaleshwar Temple in Gokarna is also a shrine for Gods like Chandikeswara, Aadi Gokarneswara, Gokarnanayagi and Dattatreya.
The devotees always bath in the sea before entering into the temple, as according to the Hindu mythology it is said that one should purify his body and mind before making any prayer to God. There is also a shivlinga made of sand which the devotees worship.
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