Omkareshwar state of Madhya Pradesh around 77 km away from Indore. The name Omkareshwar comes from the word “OM“. Also, river Narmada flows through Omkareshwar dividing it into two – North and South with an island popular as Mandhata or Shivpuri in between.is present in the
Devotees believe that Omkareshwar Temple is the home of the fourth Jyotirlinga in Hindu culture. are Swayambhu which means that they are self-born in nature. The legend says that Lord Shiva turned himself into Lingas in a fiery column of light at these particular places of worship.
What is the history of Omkareshwar Temple?
According to the history of Omkareshwar Temple, nobody knows the original date of construction of this historic temple. The earliest evidence states that in 1063, King Udayaditya installed four stone inscriptions each with Sanskrit Stotras. In 1195, Raja Bharat Singh Chauhan renovated the temple and built a palace near it.
Several legends are associated with the Omkareshwar Temple. It is believed that Narada the sage, sang high praises of Mount Meru in front of Mount Vindhya. Mount Vindhya felt jealous and prayed to Lord Shiva for more grandeur than Mount Meru. Lord Shiva appeared and blessed Vindhya with perpetual growth on the condition that Vindhya will not cause harm to anyone else.
As time passed, Vindhya grew so big that it blocked the Sun and the Moon. The people got scared and asked Saint Agasthya for help, who tricked Vindhya to stop growing. The Jyotirlingas that Lord Shiva had placed near Vindhya as a sign of his boon came to be known as Omkareshwar and Mammaleshwar. 5 of the twelve jyotirlingas are in Maharashtra. (What are they?)
What is the significance of Omkareshwar Temple?
The significance of Omkareshwar temple is that the Jyotirlinga is split in nature – one-half in the Omkareshwar Temple (known as Omkar) and the other half in The Mammaleshwar Temple (known as Amaleshwar). The pilgrims must visit both these temples to get a darshan of the complete Jyotirlinga.
The unique feature of the Omkareshwar Temple is that the main Shiva Jyotirlinga is not present under the usual Cupola (dome-like structure where temples keep the idols of Gods). Instead, it is present at the top of the temple. Moreover, the temple did not fix the Omkareshwar Linga to the ground. It is naturally present there with water surrounding it.
Devotees also believe that by performing Aarti at the Koti Thirth (on the banks of River Narmada), one can achieve health and happiness in life. As per some other beliefs, one can earn Punya or Blessing if one offers Naivedyam Bhog from their home to the Lord Shiva’s Linga on special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries.
Moreover, the worship of a replica of the Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga takes place at the first floor of the Omkareshwar Temple. It also has a beautiful sculpture for River Narmada.
Here are the timings of Omkareshwar Temple:
|Morning Darshan||5 AM||3:50 PM|
|Evening Darshan||4:15 PM||9:30 PM|
|Mangal Aarti||5 AM||5:30 AM|
|Jalabhishek||5:30 AM||12:25 PM|
|Evening Aarti||8:20 PM||9:05 PM|
Some of the sevas and poojas of Omkareshwar Temple are:
- Parthiv Shivling Pooja – This Pooja is takes place on request only. The temple priests create 1008 Shiva Lingas with mud or wood and the devotees perform their Abhishekam. People also believe that by performing this Pooja, one can get rid of the Grah Dosh from your horoscope.
- Maha Rudrabhishekam – This Abhishekam takes place by recitation of the Rigveda, Samveda, Yajurveda and the Atharva Veda in front of the Linga.
- Laghu Rudrabhishekham – Devotees believe that by doing this Pooja, one can overcome health as well as wealth-related issues.
- Narmada Aarti – Every evening a Maha Aarti takes place on the banks of River Narmada which is spectacular to view. Devotees light several lamps snd release them into the great river Narmada with hope of achieving health as well as happiness.
- Bhagavan Bhog – During this, devotees present lord Shiva with a Naivedyam Bhog in the evening every day. The Bhog (food) consists of pure Ghee, Sugar and Rice.
- Mundan (Tonsure) – Devotees can also perform a Mundan at a nominal price at the Omkareshwar Temple.
- Tuladaan –Tuladaan is a ritual where a devotee sits on one side of a Tula and then a person puts the materials that one wants to donate on the other side of it. When the Tula balances perfectly, the amount of material equivalent to the weight of the person goes to the temple management as a donation.
What are the festivals celebrated at Omkareshwar Temple?
Some of the festivals celebrated at Omkareshwar Temple are:
- Maha Shivaratri – This festival goes on for 5 days. This day marks the event of Lord Shiva’s marriage to Goddess Parvati. The temple management organises Mela.
- Karthik Utsav – The celebrations of this festival take place in the month of Karthik as per the Hindu Calendar. It goes on for 10 days. The temple also organises Panchakoshi Yatra and a huge mela during this period.
- Narmada Jayanti – This usually occurs in the Magha month of the Hindu Calendar. This day commemorates the birth of the holy River Narmada. Devotees light hundreds of deepams throughout the hillside as well as along the Narmada Ghat. In the evening, priests also conduct a special Aarti on the banks.
Here’s how to reach Omkareshwar Temple:
- Air – Nearest airport is Indore which is 77 km away.
- Train – The nearest Railway station is Mortakka which is 12 km away from Omkareshwar. The nearest Railway Junction is Khandwa which is 72 km away.
- Road – Regular bus services are available from cities like Indore, Ujjain, Jalgaon, Khandwa and Bhopal.
There are about 50 Dharmashalas available in Omkareshwar to stay. Most of them are newly constructed and are equipped with modern amenities. The Temple administration does not run any Dharmashala or Ashram. Some of the popular choices to stay are Shri Gajanan Mahajan Sansthan and the MP Narmada tourist bungalows.
Here are some temples near Omkareshwar temple:
- Mammaleshwar Temple – The other half of the Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga is present here. The Linga itself is popular as Amareshwar. The temple is small with a hall as well as a sanctum. One can also perform the Linga Abhishekam themselves.
- Saptamatruka temple – It is present 6 km away from the Omkareshwar temple. This temple is for the famous seven goddesses who helped the great Shakti Devi in fighting with demons.
- Sri Siddeshwar Temple or the Siddhnath Barahdwari – This temple is present on the plateau. The central shrine has four entrances and sabha mandaps. Moreover, all the four sabha mandaps contain 18 pillars, each of 14 inches height.
- Gauri Somnath Temple – One can visit this temple during the Parikrama around the Parikrama Path. Pilgrims have to climb 270 steps to reach the sanctum. Also, the Lingam of Lord Shiva is 6 feet high consists of shining black stone.
- Sri Annapurna Temple – The Annapurna Temple Trust of Indore has raised a complex around an ancient Annapurna temple. A Sarva Mangala temple is also present inside the complex which is in dedication to the three Goddesses Laxmi, Parvati, as well as Saraswati.
- Parikrama Path – This path is 7 km long and goes around the Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga. Pilgrims can visit several temples as well as historical places during this journey.