Karpoor Gauram Karunnaavataram Sansaar Saaram
Sadaa Vasantam Hridyaarvinde
Bhavam Bhavaani Sahitam Namaami
// I bow to Lord Shiva, the omnipresent //
Jyotirlingas are special shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva since ancient times. Out here Lord Shiva is worshiped in the form of a Jyotirlinga (Lingam of light). There are 12 Jyotirlingas in India.
Bheemashankar Jyotirlinga, situated in the extreme end of the Sahyadris Ranges, provides the devotee a enticing view of the world around. Surrounded by dense forests all around, the shrine is situated in a small village nestled high up in the Western Ghats. In the earlier days it was a very strenuous journey to reach this shrine but now there is a permanent vehicular road to reach the shrine.
Bheemashankar is on No 6 slot within the 12 Jyotirlingas The legend states that there used to be a demon named Tripurasur who was killed by Lord Shiva by manifesting into a gigantic stature with the assistance of Goddess Parvati and from the sweat of his body originated the river Bheema which transverses through Maharashtra and Karnataka before finally merging with the Krishna river hundreds of miles away.
The temple complex is quite simple in nature with no major embellishments, there is a small tank where the devotee can take a bath before entering the main shrine. The sculptures of Lord Ganesh and Kaalbhairva stand guard at the entrance of the main sanctum while the sculpture of the Tortoise and Nandi are directly ahead of the inner sanctum where the idol is located. The devotee prays to Nandi prior to proceeding into the inner sanctum .
There is also a shrine dedicated to Lord Shani outside the main temple along with a huge bell believed to have been installed by Lord Shivaji. There is an air of simplicity out here or maybe because I visited the place at an odd time that I felt the paucity of crowds giving a very pleasant and simple vibes all around.
There are small shops selling numerous artifacts related to the temple as well as sweetmeats for the various visitors. There are few basic places to stay here overnight if one wishes to, though I would not recommend a drive in the dark on the way back because the road is narrow and totally mountainous. It is said that the surrounding region has got a substantial population of leopards and other wild animals which is perfectly understandable given the remoteness of the place.
I took part n the evening and morning aarti (prayers ) and generally spend my time sitting inside the main shrine and even now as I close my eyes I am transported back to the vibes that I experienced out there on that day as I sat in the presence of the Lord himself .
|How to Reach||127 kms from Pune|
|Road condition||Single carriage roads|
|Nearby visit||Shivneri Fort|
|Temple timings||0430 to 2100 hrs|