About Aundha Nagnath Jyotirling
Aundha Nagnath is supposed to be the eighth (adya) of the twelve Jyotirlingas in the country, is an important place of pilgrimage.The present temple is said to have been built by Yadavas of devagiri and dates to 13th century.The first temple is said to be from time of Mahabharata and is believed to have been constructed by Yudhishthira, eldest of Pandava, when they were expelled for 14 years from Hastinapur.It has been stated that this temple building was of seven-storyed before it was sacked by Aurangzeb.
This temple has beautiful carvings and has been designed in the Hemadpanthi architecture style. The temple is spread across an area of 60,000 sq ft and is famous for celebration of festivals like Shivratri and Vijayadasahmi.
The Shiv Ling here is made of sand and hence is always covered with a silver cup and is opened only when Abhishek is performed.
One specialty of this temple is that in 1212 A.D.the temple had moved round and main gate which was in East then after turning round it become in the West direction. As we know Mahadwar (main gate) of Shiv temple is always in the East direction but here it is in the West. This Jyotirlinga is called Harihar (Hari meaning Lord Vishnu & Har meaning Lord Shiv) Jyotirlinga.Lord Shiv and Lord Vishnu both are present here and is a must visit for all Shiv Bhakts.
Another speciality of this temple is that the statue of " Nandi " (i.e. the divine Ox of Shankar) which is usually situated on the entrance of the temples , is situated on the backside of the main temple in a seperate structure. Also the main temple is surrounded by 12 small temples of other Jyotirlingas.
Apart from these, Vedavyasa Linga, Bhandareshwar, Nilakanteshwar, Ganapati, Dattatreya, Muralimanohar, Dasavatar temple and idols etc., are there. In all, there are 108 Shiva temples and 68 shrines are located here.
The structure of the Naganath temple is very beautiful. Inside it, there is another shrine called Runamochan teerth. Both these shrines are called “Mother-in-law- Daughter-in-law” shrines. Every 12 years, at the time of Kapila Shashti, kashi Ganga offering as “Padarpan” is performed. During this the water in the teerth kund looks crystal clear. Again at a specific time it becomes ‘Shivala Yukt”.
Close to the Naganath temple, there are several statues of various divines. Besides these there are many more idols of animals, soldiers relating some stories. These stones idols are very beautiful to look at. At a huge corner, there is an idol of Parvati, who is sulking with Shiva trying to pacify her. This statue is amazing to look at with its stunning features. It is unmatched in its expression of emotions.
How to Reach Aundha Nagnath