Ujjain is one of the most ancient cities in the world. Located in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, the city is full of beautiful temples and takes part in regular religious events. There are many things to go after in this city, one of them is the Mahakaleshwar temple. The temple is a famous pilgrimage place for the Hindus and one of the top spots to go in the whole state of Madhya Pradesh.

One of the fascinating things about this place is calmness. You feel stress-free and walk without a burden once you are in Ujjain near to the temple itself.

 

The Temple – Mahakaleshwar

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple is situated on the banks of the holy river Shipra. The Jyotirlinga is one of the 12 famous Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva. This Shiv temple is one of the main ten Tanta Temples on the planet. People believe that Lord Shiva resides here in the form of a lingam.

The Devotional Bliss

Believing something is the key to release yourself from any doubt. Hence, the devotion of people is just like that. Who comes to this temple every day. Devotees believe that if you pray with your pure heart and mind to the lord if you worship him with your soul. Then they will release you from all the sufferings of your life once and for all. Mahakaleshwar does not only reside in Ujjain but the heart of every human being.

The Jyotirlinga

The literal meaning of Jyotirlinga is ‘pillar of light.’ The Stambha symbolizes that there is no beginning or end. The story about the linga is older than the time itself. There was an argument that went off between Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu about who was the supreme god. At that time, Lord Shiva came into the sight in a shape of an endless glowing pillar and asked each of the gods to find the end. Neither of them was able to find the end. On the one side, Lord Narayan told the truth that this pillar is endless. But, on the other side, Lord Brahma lied to Lord Shiva and made him furious. Lord Shiva cursed Lord Brahma for the lie and blessed Lord Vishnu for the truth. The legend states that the places where the pillar of light fell are where the Jyotirlinga is located.

 

History Of The Temple

Now, what lies in the book of time and history that tells us about this great temple? The legend states that there was a boy named Shrikar. Who witness Chandrasena, Monarch of Ujjain, worshipping Lord Shiva all day.

Impressed by his true devotion towards Lord Shiva, the boy placed a stone and started worshipping Shiva considering, that stone as a linga.

Individuals felt that this resembled a game that the little kid was playing. As his devotion expanded each day, Lord Shiva accepted the Jyotirlinga structure and lived in the Mahakal forest.

There was another legend that shares the story of a demon Dushana. The demon assaulted all the people of Avanti. The moment when there was destruction going on everywhere, Lord Shiva appeared and rescued the people of the village by defeating that demon. Then, all the people of Avanti requested Lord Shiva to stay in their village. Upon the request of the people, the supreme Lord took a permanent abode as Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga.

 

What is the Best Time To Visit The Mahakaleshwar Temple

It’s not about the time but the day. The best day to visit the temple is on the day of Mahashivratri. The big day of the festival falls between February and March. People who visit during the time of this festival can become a part of this celebration and witness this night of Shiva. On Mahashivratri, all the devotees take day and night fast and conduct rituals to worship the lingam. During this, time people come from all over the world to visit the Mahakaleshwar temple. So, these two are the best months to visit the Mahakaleshwar temple.

Some Special Mentions About The Mahakal temple

The architectural styles that share the structural outlet of the temple are in Maratha, Bhumija, and Chalukya. The main temple complex is a three-storeyed construction with the Lingas of Mahakaleshwar, Omkareshwar, and Nagchandreshwar introduced in the lower, center, and upper levels individually. With one level in the underground, the temple has five levels. In the temple itself, you can see the images of Goddess Parvati (Wife of Lord Shiva) (to the north face), his sons, Kartikeya (to the east), Ganesha (to the west), and Nandi (to the south).

On the second floor over the Mahakaleshwar linga is the Omkareshwara linga. Revered on the third floor of the temple is a picture of Nagchandreshwar – with Lord Shiva and Parvati situated on a ten-hooded snake and encompassed by different sculptures. It has a huge spire (shikhara) with intricate and beautiful carvings.

Something Interesting About This Temple

There is an interesting fact that the Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga is Dakshinamukhi, which means it faces the south, opposite to the other 12 Jyotirlingas. The idols of the temple don’t face the southern direction, usually. That what makes this temple so interesting.

 

The Bhasma Aarti Of Mahakaleshwar Temple

This temple is well-known for its Bhasma Aarti, which means aarti with ash. If you go on the trip to Mahakaleshwar and get back without witnessing the Bhasma Aarti. Then you will miss something special. The aarti is visually appealing and gives you a spiritual enhanced aura.

The aarti is one of the main ceremonies performed at around 4 am, to awaken the god after Jal Abhishek. The Bhasma Aarti, select to the Mahakaleshwar temple, is led with Vibhuti, sacred ash. Performed the aarti after smearing Bhasma is something you have never seen before. But there is a reason why the priest uses the ashes.

The Reason

The meaning of Mahakaleshwar is someone who is beyond time and death. Post-death, a man is reduced to ashes. Thus, it represents the act of submitting yourself to Mahakal (The controller of time and death).

Interesting Facts About The Mahakaleshwar Temple

  • Nagchadreshwar is opened to the public just for a single day in the year – on Nag Panchami day. It stays shut on all the other days of the year.
  • In the famous ritual with Bhasma aarti, the ash is changeless, pure, imperishable, and pure, just like the God himself.
  • The Jyotirlinga faces the south. In the direction of death, symbolizes that he is the master of death.
  • The linga is a natural one, so it drives power from itself alone. The Jyotirlinga does not need any mantra-like any other Jyotirlinga.

How To Reach

Located in the spiritual city of Ujjain in the Malwa region of Madhya Pradesh. The Mahakaleshwar temple is well-connected to the o major cities via rail, road, and air.

  • By Train

The number of railway stations is four, which are nearest to the Mahakaleshwar temple. These stations are Ujjain Junction, Pingleshwar, Chintaman, and Vikram Nagar. The routes from the temple to these stations are well- connected to the major cities of India. Once you reach the railway temple, then you can easily access the temple by taking local transport.

  • By Road

To be honest with you. The buses are the best means of transport when planning to visit via road. There are several buses which help you to reach your spot from major cities. Some vital distances of the Mahakaleshwar temple from major cities are:

  • Distance From Bhopal: 188 KM
  • Capital Distance Delhi: 776 KM
  • Smart City Distance Bangalore: 1370 KM
  • Financial Capital Mumbai: 648 KM
  • Distance From The Queen Of The Deccan Pune: 665 KM
  • By Air

The city of Indore has the closest airport, which is at a distance of 51 km from the Mahakaleshwar temple. Visitors can have any local transport to reach the temple after reaching the airport.

Not for a specific one but, the temple is a must-visit for all. The Mahakaleshwar temple significant connection that will consistently stay amid the old Hindu traditions and current India. There are numerous tourist destinations close to the temple, which travelers can visit.

They are –

  • Vedha Shala
  • Radha Madan Mohan Temple
  • Bade Ganesh Ji Ka Mandir
  • Bhartrihari Caves and more.

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