12 JYOTIRLINGA DARSHAN 5 SRI VAIDYANATHA

If one is to draw aline between Kanyakumari and Ujjain, Parali Village can be clearly seen on that line. This village is located on the slopes of Meru or Naganarayana Mountain. Parali is an ancient village located near three rivers, Brahma, Venu and Saraswati. because of the location of one of the twelve JyotirLingas of Shankara, it has become famous.
This village is also known as Kantipur, Madhyarekha Vaijayanti or Jayanti. This place is suppossed to be the abode of Lord Shankar and his consort Parvati. Parari is the only place where Lord Shankara is seen together with his consort. Nowhere else can this be found in this manner. Therefore this place is also known as “Anokhi Kashi”. Because of its equal status with Kashi, those who visit this place are supposed to have, visited Kashi.
It is 26 kilometers from Ambejogai in the Beed district. Yogeshwan of Ambejogai was married to Lord Vaidyanath of Parali. But by the time the marriage party reached, the auspicious time of the wedding had passed. As a result the people of the marriage party turned into stone statues. Yogeshwari was waiting away from Parali.This is one story that is frequently heard there.
Plenty of water, pure air, and a good means of transportation have made Parali into a thriving commercial center. A big Thermal Power station is also located here.                       
In spite of being a small village, Parali has been accorded the status of a Tensile and a district. The surrounding areas of the village stand witness to its classic mythological events.This makes the village even more important.
When the Gods and Demons made their combined effort in Amrit Manthan (Churning for Nectar), fourteen gems emerged. There were Dhanwantari and Amrit Ralnas in it. When the Demons rushed to grab Amrit, Lord Vishnu hid the Amrit and Dhanwantari in the Shiva Linga of Lord Shankara. Just as the Demons tried to touch the Linga, flames started emanating from the Linga.The scared Demons ran away. But when devotees of Lord Shankara touched the Linga, there was a freeflow of Amrit from the same. Even today, devotees touch the Shiva Lingle as a part of taking Darshan. Here, there is no discrimination between caste, creed or colour. Anyone can come and visit this place. As the Lingamurthy is supposed to have Amrit and Dhanvantari, it is also known as Amriteshwar and Dhanvantari.
The mountains and jungles and the rivers, are full of useful medicinal herbs. That is why Parali JyotirLingas is also known as Vaidyanath.
It is here that Lord Vishnu successfully helped the Devas to obtain Amrit. Therefore, this place is also known as “Vaijayanti”
Once the Demon King Ravana went to Kailasa mountain and did a severe penance to please Lord Shankara. Put up with cold, heat, rains and fine and even then when Shiva did not appear before him, he began to cut his head off in order to offer it to the ShivaLinga.Then Shiva relented after Ravana tried to offer his tenth head. On appeared before him. He restored all of Ravana’s heads and granted him boons. Ravana expressed his desire to take Shiva to Lanka as a boon. He said, ”1 want to take you to Lanka. Shankara, who is very soft hearted to His devotees, got carried away and agreed to accompany Ravana to Lanka. He told Ravanan, “You must carry my Linga with care and devotion, but do be careful not to put it down on the earth until you reach your destination, or else, it will stay at whichever place you put it down” Shiva cautioned.
Ravana began the journey homeward carrying the ShivaLinga. On the way, he wanted to relieve himself by urination. He bid a cowherd boy to hold the Linga While the relieved himself. The cowherd was not able to hear the weight of the Linga and when he could no longer hold it, he put it down on the earth. And the Shiva Linga stayed put there as Lord Shiva already ordained and came to be known as Vaidyanatheshwar.
Here, the gods were sad about Ravana taking away Shiva to his Lanka. They requested saint Narada to do something. Narada met Ravana and said to him by way of praising his penance and Tapas, “You made a mistake in trusting Shiva. Believing Shiva’s word was wrong. Go to him and slander him and get your way. Go to Kailasa and move it entirely. Your success will be gauged by your at of moving Kailasa from there.” Ravana was tricked Into believing Narada.Ravana promptly carried out Narada’s bidding. This angered Shiva very much and he cursed Ravana thus: “A unique power is soon going to born which will destroy your pride in the strength of your arms”. Narada informed the Gods of these tidings and his success in his mission. The gods were relieved and were happy. In the meanwhile, Ravana too was happy with his success and the boon he received from Shiva. He returned and was in a trance and was underthe influence of Shiva’s mythical power. He was heady and drunk with power. He decided to conquer the entire universe.To subdue his ego only God had to descend on the earth in the Avatar of Rama.
Near Parali Village, the Temple is built with stones on a high mound. The temple is surrounded on all four sides by strong walls. The insides have corridors and a courtyard. Outside the temple there is huge Deep Stambh or pillar. The main gate or the Mahadeva has a Minaret nearby. It is called a Preach or Gawaksha, i.e., window. With the help of the location of these special prayers are held for Sun God, based on the sunrays failing through these windows, directly on to the Lingamurthy.
There is a strong, wide staircase to enter the Temple. It is called ‘Ghat’. The old Ghat was built in the year 1108.
The inner portal of the temple and the court hall are both of the same size. Therefore, the deity’s Darshan has to be done from the courtroom itself. No other place has this type of arrangement. At other places, the inner portal or the Garbhagriha is visually deep.
The Lingamurty at Vaidyanath is made of Saligrama stone. It is beautiful and very smooth and is ih a benevolent attitude. On all the four sides of the temple, Nanda Deeps (lights) keep burning.
Vaidyanath temple was renovated in the year 1706 AD, by Shiva devotee Ahelyadevi Holkar. She obtained some special stones from the nearby mountain range of Trisula Devi range, which is close to Parali. This place was Ahelyadevi’s favourite.
Late Nanarao Deshpanda built the wonderful court hall of the temple. The artisans were brought from the village and with the help of the devotees. A Rama Rameshwar Mahadeva Temple too is built in memory of them near to the Vaidyanath temple. With in the premises of the Vaidyanath temple itself, there are eleven more temples for Shiva, The Veerashaiva Lingayats consider Vaidyanath Temple as the best.
Srimant Pershwa donated a large piece of land as an endowment to the temple commission. Today this establishment works through a committee, Several auspicious events are arranged here. Travelers can stay here in comfort.
Just as Parali is a place of pilgrimage, for Shiva devotees, it is also a meeting point for Hari Hare. In this mixed holy place, Lord Krishna’s festivals too are celebrated along with Lord Shankara’s festivals, with great festivity. The water from the Harihar Teertha is brought for the daily worship of Vaidyanath. Every Monday devotees gather here in great numbers.
On Chaitra Padva, Vijayadashani, Tripuri Purnima, Mahe Shivaratri and Vaikunth Chathurdashi, big celebrations take place. During these celebrations, there is no distinction between Bet and Tulsi. Mahadev is offered
Tulsi leaves and Vishnu is offered Bel leaves I his unique practice j is seen only in Vaidyanath. During the rainy season (Shr.iv.m) worship of Vaidyanath, the entire area of Parali echoes with the chanting of Rudrabhisheka Mantrochchar. The regular Puja is also done with groat devotion and dedication.
Markandeya, obtained his boon of life here in Parali tiom Vaidyanatha. This story is from Sivapuranam. Markandeya was not blessed with a long life. Yama wanted to take his life in accordance with the time o! Markancleya’s life. But Shiva released him from imminent death & from yama. Apond is named after him. It is here that this happened.
The story of Satyavan and Savitri too is based in Parali This holy place. On the Narayan mountain, the Vata Vriksh or Banyan tree of Savitri’s Story, is still here to be seen. There is a temple of Vateshwara there.
King Sriyal and Queen Changuna’s dear son Chilia, came to life duo to the kindness of Lord Shiva in Parali Vaidyanath. The famous saint Jag Mitra Nagaji lived in Parali. There is a (tomb) Samadhi and an Ashram (Hermitage) here.
The life story of Jaganmitra Nagaji is written in verse by Mahipatbua Taharabadkar, the name of which is “Bhakti Vijay’. Nagaii was a Vithal Bhakta Brahmin. He looked after his family by begging. He was engrossed in the worship of Vithala, day and night One night, some wicked people who did not like him, burnt his hut. But because of his devotion to Vithala, he came out unscathed. The villagers later gifted Nagaji with same land. He worked hard on their land, and kept the family fires burning from the produce of this land. The wicked people were still not satisfied. A Yavana official came to Parali on transfer. The wicked villager told lies about Nagaji to this official. The official had formed all wrong ideas about Nagaji, because he believed the lies. He snatched away Nagaji’s land and told him,” “if you are Jaganmitra (Friend of the world) as they say, you bring me a live lion for my worship”. Jaganmitra Nagaji went to the forest and prayed to Lord Vithala. The Lord was pleased with the prayers. He assumed the from of a Lion and stood in front of Nagaji. Nagaji felt very happy. He took the lion to the house of the Yavana official. The officer felt very ashamed when he saw the lion.The begged for forgiveness from Nagaji and returned his Land to him. Saint Nagaji’s Samadhi is in Paiali Vaidyanath,
There are several Temples, Ashrams, Samadhi, Teerthas and holy places in Parali. There are many legends associated with these. Some of these are Kale-sanwale-Goreram ke Mandir, Jhengarwale Gopinath, Dutta, Kalika, Shani, Vithal, Vyankatesh, Balaji, etc.
Lord Ganesha’s idol without the usual trunk and in a sitting posture like a body builder can be seen here. One make a visit to this temple first and only then can proceed to Vidyanath Temple.
Great Saints like Vakrebua, Dhundiraj, Yamaraj, Vishweswar, Guru Lingaswamy lived here. Their holy touch has made Parali even holier. It is a place of pride for Maharashtra.
Jaya Vaidyanath! Jaya Vaidyanath! Jaya Vaidyanath!

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