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  • Gokarna Mahaabaleshwara Temple
  • Gokarna Mahaabaleshwara Temple
  • Gokarna Mahaabaleshwara Temple
  • Gokarna Mahaabaleshwara Temple
  • Gokarna Mahaabaleshwara Temple
  • Gokarna Mahaabaleshwara Temple
  • Gokarna Mahaabaleshwara Temple

Gokarna Mahaabaleshwara Shiva Temple

Gokarna, Karwar, Coastal Karnataka
(SKU: KA30/1050)
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Situated on the picturesque shore of the Arabian Sea in the west coast of India, Gokarna Mahabhaleshwar is an important pilgrim center for Hindus. This temple is one of the seven major Mukti Sthalas of Karnataka state. Carved in the ancient Dravidian style, this gorgeous temple looks awesome along the serene coastline. Located at a distance of 60 kilometers from Karwar of North Kannada district, this temple is not only a religious place but also a tourist place as well. The linga is believed to shower immense blessings on devotees because Lord Shiva is Ashutosh (one who get pleased easily). Just a glimpse of the lings is believed to give great peace to the mind.
According to estimates, this temple is more than 1500 years old. There are 12 prime temples or Jyotirlingas spread across the length and breadth of India. All are sacred temples that are highly revered by hindus. Gokarna Mahabaleshwar is supposed to be the second most important temple among 12 Jyotirlingas. It is known as Dakshin Kashi that means Varanasi of the south.
Lord Shiva is one of the three supreme powers, the other two being Brahma, and Lord Vishnu. He is the god of destruction, who opens the third eye and obliterates everything when sins and evils reach beyond tolerable limits. In spite of being a destroyer, he is pure and simple at heart. He becomes happy with simplicity and purity. He doesn't need any pomp or show.The origin of this temple goes back to the legend of Ramayana. According to the story, Ravana's mother, a great devotee of Lord Shiva made Indra, the king of gods so jealous that he stole the linga and threw it in the sea. Ravana's mother became very upset and decided to fast-until death. Ravana assured her that he will bring the Atma Linga of Lord shiva from Mount Kailash. He started intense meditation and worship of Lord Shiva who got pleased with his commitment. Lord Shiva offered him Atma Linga and instructed not to put it on ground at any cost. Lord Ganesha was worried and decided to infatuate Ravana by taking form of a beautiful woman. Ravana forgot about the instruction and placed the Linga at Gokarna. It is said that it got fixed there and was immovable ever since. Ravana tried to get it out from the ground but couldn't succeed. He prayed to Shiva and named the place as Mahabaleshwar (it means the strongest of all).
Other than Gokarna Mahabaleshwar, there are four other important temples- Dhareshwar, Gunavanteshwara, Murdeshwar and Shejjeshwar. These five temples are known as Panch Kshetra. Mahashivratri is the main festival when a special Yatra (travel on well-decorated chariots) is held on the main streets. Images of Lord Shiva and other deities are pulled by devotees. There are various types of poojas (divine rituals) organized at different times in the temple. Sankalpa pooja, Bilvarchana Pooja, Panchamrutabhishek pooja, Silver Nagabharana and Gold Nagabharana are the prime rituals, which the devotees gather to observe piously.
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