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shiv

Lord Shiv is considered as India's most popular and ancient God. Evidence of Shiv worship is available from the seals and symbols of Harappa Civilisation. He has been referred to by various names such as Maheshwar, Mahayogi, Mahadev, Aadidev, Pashupati, Nataraj etc.

Shiv has been referred to as Rudra in Rigved who consumes Som and whose bow gives rise to diseases. He has also been considered as the God of medicines.

The Greek traveller Megasthenes has mentioned about the worship of Shiv on a large scale in India. He has referred to Shiv as Dionysos. The Western scholars compare him with the Greek God, Apollo.

According to the Puranas, his entire body is smeared with ash and his throat is blue due to the consumption of poison. His matted hair carries the Ganga River; the head holds the moon while the centre of the forehead has the third eye. He uses tiger skin and elephant skin as clothing and is garlanded with serpents and human skulls around the neck.

Lord Shiv, besides being an ascetic, also has a family. His wife is Parvati and he has 2 sons called Ganesh and Kartikeya. His vehicle is Nandi (a bull) and he keeps a large number of Gans (attendants) with him. His hands hold a trishul (trident) and a damru (a small drum).

As a result of a curse by Bhrigu Rishi, he is worshipped in the ling form, a symbol of creation. The 12 Jyotirlings situated at various places in India are considered as the most active sites of his. His oldest representative in a human form is the Shivling of Gudimallam (Chennai).

Generally Lord Shiv is considered as the God of destruction. However, a number of contradictory traits can be seen in his persona. He is very easily pleased in the form of Ashutosh but furious in the Bhairav form. His Rudra form makes one weep while the Shankar and Shambhu forms shower joy.

Lord Shiv is also considered as the father of dance, music, and yoga. In his Dakshinamurti form, he is worshipped as a teacher of all forms of knowledge.

According to traditional beliefs, the entire universe has been created with 5 basic elements - Prithvi (earth), Jal (water), Agni (fire), Aakash (space), and Vayu (air). Lord Shiv being the controller of these elements is worshipped in his Panchanan form - Sadyojat (earth), Vamdev (water), Aghor (fire), Tatpurush (air), and Ishaan (space)

Since ancient times, Shiv has been worshipped as different sects in different parts of the country. Sects like Trik, Pratyabhignya, Spandastar, and Pashupat emerged in Kashmir, while Matmayur rose in Central India. Nathpanth was dominant in eastern India and Lingayat was popular in Kannada region. In the Tamil region, the Nayanars and the Aagam saints popularised the worship of Shiv.

Amarnath

Lord Mrityunjay (Shiv) is considered to be the God of immortality. The renowned ice Shivling of Amarnath and the cave are a natural symbol of this form of Shiv. The Amarnath cave is situated in the state of Jammu & Kashmir at a distance of 140 km from Srinagar and 42 km from Pahalgam. However, the distance from...
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Kailashnath Ellora

The world renowned Kailashnath temple is situated in Ellora (Verul) Village which is also counted as Cave No. 16. This huge temple, spread over twice the area of Parthenon of Greece, is carved from a single, huge piece of rock. The construction style of this temple is unique wherein the shikhar (top) was built first...
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Vrihadeshwar Tanjore

The famous temple of Vrihadeshwar (Shiv) is situated in the Kaveri delta of Tamil Nadu, in Tanjore. There are 74 temples over here, belonging to the Chola period. The temple was declared a world heritage site in 1987 by UNESCO. In the Kaveri delta, one can see the charm of Tamil language, the purest form of...
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Mahabaleshwar

Mahabaleshwar is situated in the Sahyadri mountain range in the Satara district of Maharashtra. During the British rule, it was the summer capital of Bombay Residency and is today rated as the best among all hill stations in Maharashtra. Mahabaleshwar is considered as the land of Vishnu and Brahma too, besides Shiv...
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Bhuvaneshwar

The famous Lingraj Temple is situated in Bhuvaneshwar, the capital Orissa, a state in Eastern India. The presiding deity of the temple is Tribhuvaneshwar (Shiv). There are over 500 old and new temples in the city, which is why it is known as the city of temples. It is also the centre of Orissa's holy golden...
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Kandariya Mahadev Khajuraho

The world heritage site, Kandariya Mahadev Temple is situated in Khajuraho. Khajuraho is a small town in the Chhatarpur district of the Bundelkhand region of northern Madhya Pradesh. Initially there were 85 temples in Khajuraho of which only 24 are left and this one is the largest and grandest...
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Ek Ling Ji Udaipur

The famous pilgrimage of Eklingji is situated in the Udaipur district of Rajasthan. It is also known as Kailashpuri and is the foremost of the 4 pilgrimage sites of Mewad. Eklingji is worshipped as the Parbrahma form of Shiv. He is considered as the true ruler of Mewad while the Sisodia Ranas of Mewad rule as his Diwans (ministers)...
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Ranvireshwar Jammu

Ranvireshwar is considered as the biggest Shiv Temple of Northern India. The temple has been named after the Dogra king, Maharaja Ranvir Singh, who built it. The temple is situated in Jammu, the winter capital of Jammu & Kashmir. Jammu is known as the city of temples where a large number of temples and...
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More in Shiv...

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Amarnath

Lord Mrityunjay (Shiv) is considered to be the God of...

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Kailashnath Ellora

The world renowned Kailashnath temple is situated in...

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Vrihadeshwar Tanjore

The famous temple of Vrihadeshwar (Shiv) is situated in the...

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Mahabaleshwar

Mahabaleshwar is situated in the Sahyadri mountain range...

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Bhuvaneshwar

The famous Lingraj Temple is situated in Bhuvaneshwar, the capital...

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Kandariya Mahadev Khajuraho

The world heritage site, Kandariya Mahadev Temple is...

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Ek Ling Ji Udaipur

The famous pilgrimage of Eklingji is situated in the...

Click here
img

Ranvireshwar Jammu

Ranvireshwar is considered as the biggest Shiv Temple of...

Click here