January 7, 2017

Grishneshwar temple, sometimes referred to as the Ghrushmeshwar Jyotirlinga (linga of light) or Dhushmeshwar temple, is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga shrines mentioned in the Shiva Purana. This is the smallest Jyotirlinga temple in India. Ghrishneshwar Temple is one out of five Jyotirlingas situated in the state of Maharashtra. This pilgrimage site is located in Ellora (also called Verul), less than a kilometer from Ellora Caves – a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is about 30 km from the city of Aurangabad, about 250 km from Pune and about 300 km from Mumbai. Enjoy the drive from whatever way you are reaching Aurangabad. 

We got up at early morning 5:30 AM since we had to reach Aurangabad as per plan, and first in the list was to visit Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga temple visit with Tanuj and maa. Tanuj also had fun while driving our new Dzire. Here we reached entrance of Grishneshwar temple at around 12 at noon. This temple is presently an important and active pilgrimage site of the Hindus and attracts long lines of devotees daily. Anyone can enter the temple premises and its inner chambers, but to enter the sanctum sanctorum core (garbha-ghrya) of the temple, the local Hindu tradition demands that men must go bare chested. We were quite surprise to see it, and respected that. One can touch the jyotirlinga here and perform abhishek through Pandits/Purohits.

The Grishneshwar Temple was constructed by Ahilyabhai Holkar who also re-constructed the Kashi Vishwanath Temple at Varanasi, UP and the Vishnu Paada Temple at Gaya Bihar. There is a court hall inside which is built on 24 pillars. We watched few carvings summarizing various legends and mythologies of Shiva on these pillars. The feeling inside the Garbhagriha is simply amazing. The temple was quite peaceful and calm with very less crowd. As we visited on a weekday, so we had ample time inside Garbhagriha. There is a Nandikeshwara (Nandi bull) in the court hall. The temple houses carvings and sculptures of many Hindu gods and goddesses. 

The temple is made up of Red stone and looks artistic. Photography is not allowed inside temple premises, so we took few photographs from back side and outside areas. You need to keep all your belongings outside only. Better keep your mobile/cameras in your hotel room or vehicle or deposit in the locker which is at the side of the temple gates. We also had a glance at Shahaji Raje Samadhi which is located just besides the Temple. There is small market outside which sells items for worship and handicrafts at very nominal costs. It was one of most peaceful and less crowded jyotirlinga I have ever seen and know. After that we headed for Daulatabad Fort and then Bibi ka Makbara (Mini Tajmahal).

Near by places of interest: 
Ellora Caves, Aurangabad
Ajanta Caves, Aurangabad
Daulatabad Fort, Aurangzeb Tomb, 
Bibika Makbara (Mini Tajmahal)


‎Ashok Panvalkar said...

I have visited Grishneshwar Temple twice which is famous Jyotirlinga in Aurangabad and must visit if u r visiting near Aurangabad, Ellora, or Ajanta.

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