Mahakala of Ujjain knows among the twelve, celebrate as Jyotirlingas in India.
The glory of the Mahakaleshwar temple has been vividly describing in various Puranas. Starting with Kalidasa, many Sanskrit poets have eulogized this temple in emotive terms.
The tradition of Mahakala in minds of the people is eternal Ujjain use to be center point of the calculation of the Indian time and Mahaklala was consideringing as the distinctive presiding deity of Ujjain.
The presiding deity of time, Shiva, in all his splendor, reigns eternal in Ujjain.
The temple of Mahakaleshwar, its Shikhar soaring into the skies, an imposing façade against the skyline, evokes primordial awe and reverence with its majesty.
The Mahakal dominates the life of the city and its people, even in the midst of the busy routine of modern preoccupations, and provides an unbreakable link with past traditions.
One of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India, the lingam at the Mahakal is believing to be swayambhu (born of itself),
deriving currents of power (Shakti) from within itself as against the other images and lingams which are ritually establishing and investing with mantra-shakti.
List of 12 Jyotirlinga
Somnath (Gujrat), Malikarjuna (Shrisailam in Andhra Pradesh), Mahakaleshwar (Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh), Omkareshwar (Madhya Pradesh), Trimbakeshwar (Nashik) ,Kedarnath (Himalayas), Bhimashankar (Maharashtra), Vaidyanath (Jharkhand), Nageshwar (Dwarka), Rameshwaram (Rameshwaram, Tamil Nadu), Grishneshwar (Aurangabad, Maharashtra).
The idol of Mahakaleshwar knows to be Dakshina Murty, facing the South.
This is a unique feature, upheld by tantric tradition, to be found only in Mahakaleshwar among the 12 jyotirlingas.
The idol of Omkareshwar Shiva is consecrating in the sanctum above the Mahakal shrine. The images of Ganesh, Parvati and Karttikeya are installing in the west, north, and east of the sanctum sanctorum. To the south is the image of Nandi.
The idol of Nagchandreshwar on the third storey is open for darshan only on the day of Nagpanchami. On the day of Mahashivaratri, a huge fair is held near the temple, and worship goes on through the night.
The Mahakaleshwar temple at Ujjain is located near a lake; it has five levels, one of which is underground. The temple itself is located in a spacious courtyard surrounded by massive walls. The shikhara is adorned with sculptural finery. Brass lamps light the way to the underground sanctum.
It is believing that Prasada offered here to the deity can be re-offer, unlike all other shrines. Mahakaleshwar Temple ¤ Temple Dedicated To Lord Shiva — The Destroyer of the Universe Mahakaleshwar Temple, mention by the great poet Kalidasa in his works, is dedicated to Lord Shiva, the Destroyer of the Universe.
The Shiva linga is worship throughout India, as it symbolizes Shiva’s incarnate power on earth. On the other hand, a jyotirlinga is the swayamabhu (self-manifested) linga, which is finding only in 12 places in India.
Rituals Performed One of the rituals performed in this temple is the Bhasm Arti that involves smearing the linga with hot ashes from the burning ghats (cremation grounds).
Shiva is believing to dwell in cremation grounds, and the ash-smearing ceremony is a homage to the Destroyer of the Universe himself. This form of worship is symbolic of Death and Life being inseparable, an idea that is inherent to most of the Hindu schools of thought.
The idol of Mahakaleshwar Temple is calling Dakshinamurtias it faces south (dakshin: south, and murti: idol). Ujjain On the banks of river Kshipra, the city of Ujjain exists in Madhya Pradesh.
It is also known as Indrapuri Amaravati, and Avantika Because of the number of golden towers of several temples, this town is also known as “Swarna Sringa.”
One of the seven cities of deliverance or salvation, Avantika Nagar has 7 Sagar Teerthas, 28 teerthas, 84 SiddhaLingas, 25-30 SivaLingas, Ashtabhairav, Ekadasa Rudrasthana, temples for hundreds of deities, Jalakund and monuments are there.
Once there lived a Brahman who had four sons, who were all devotees of Siva. The wicked demon king Dushan came to Avantika after attaining a boon from Lord Brahma and started torturing the erudite Brahmanas of Avantika.
But the Brahmanas who were very engross in their worship of Shiva did not even flinch. The demon king sent all four of his henchmen with the orders that they have to ensure that no Vedic Dharmanushtan activities are to take place.
The harassed people came running to the Brahmans seeking help. The Brahmanas assured the people and pacified them. They immediately started praying to Lord Shiva. Meanwhile, just as the Demon king tried to attack the Brahmanas, the earth would split open near the Parthiv Murty with a loud noise and a huge crater would form there. In this manner, Siva assumed the colossal form of Mahakal and appeared.
He ordered the wicked Demon from going anywhere near the Brahmanas. But the wicked Demon king did not pay heed. As a result, Siva burnt him to ashes with just one grunt. Seeing Lord Siva in this Avatar, Brahma, Vishnu, and Indra and other Devas came down and prayed to the Lord and pleased Him. The grandeur of Mahakaleswar is indescribable. Chandrasena, the king of Ujjain, was not only a scholar, but also a staunch devotee of Lord Siva.
Once his friend Maheswari’s follower Manibahdra gave him a beautiful gemstone called Sundara Chintamani. It shone so bright and beautiful when Chandrasen wore it on his neck, that he looked even more glorious than the celestial gods. It would make even them feel jealous. Once, some kings went and asked Chandrasen to part with the jewel, and Chandrasen promptly refused to do so. This angered the kings, who in turn attacked Chandrasena’s kingdom.
When Chandrasena realize that he was surrounding by the enemy, he sought the help of Mahakal. Bhagawan Shiva was please with his prayers and showed him a solution for his problem.
Just then, by chance, a Brahman woman wandered near Mahakal, carrying her child with her, and suddenly became a widow. An illiterate boy once saw the king performing Puja in the stone and installed it in his empty house. He imagined it to be an incarnation of Shiva and started worshipping it.
The boy became so engrossed in prayer and chanting, that he even forgot all about food. When his mother went to call him, any number of calls had no effect on him. He was silently praying. Angry by this, the mother, who was still bound by worldly love, threw away the SivaLinga. She destroyed all the thing of worship. The boy was very sad at what his mother had done. He started to pray to Shiva with his entire concentration.
Siva was not long in coming to the rescue of his devotee. This stone SivaLinga which was bring by the son of a cowherd soon became adorned with gemstones and turned into a JyotirLinga.
After singing in praise of Lord Siva, when the boy return to his house, he was amazing to find a beautiful palatial home instead. Thus, with the Grace and Blessings of Lord Siva, the boy became rich and led a very happy life. In the meantime, the enemy kings, who attached ceased Chandrasena’s empire, began to fight among themselves. They began to say king Chandrasena is a Siva devotee and ujjain itself is the city of Mahakal.
It is, therefore, impossible for anyone to win it. They then decided to extend a hand of friendship to king Chandrasena, and together they all worshipped Mahakal. At that time, the Vanara King Hanuman appeared there. He told the kings that only Siva could grant salvation to mankind and nobody else.
Siva can be to please with worship done even without chanting any mantras. The example of the son of a cowherd is for us. Then Hanuman looked at Chandrasena with eyes filled with affection and benevolence and disappeared.