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When Dakshaprajapati held a Mahayana, he did not invite Shankara for it. Parvati could not tolerate this slight. She jumped into the Agnikund of the holy fire and gave up her life. This made Shankara very unhappy and sorrowful. He started to wander in the forests. He reached a huge ravine called Amardaka and began to live there.
Even here, he had to face some insults. As a result, he felt dejected and turned his body into ashes. After some time, Pandavas came there during their Vanvas (life in forests) build a hermitage for themselves. Their cows used to go to the same riverbank to drink water. After drinking water, milk used to automatically flow into the river as if the cows were offering to the river. One day Bhima saw this miraculous event. He promptly told Dharmaraja about the same. Then Dharmaraja said, “Surely, some great god must be living in this river’ “Then the Pandavas started removing the water from the river. The middle part of the river was so hot that the water there was boiling.
On the west coast in an area of 16 Yojanas Daruka and Daruk need to live. The hermits were tired of being harassed by Daruk, and others. So they went and sought refuge with Orvamuni, who in turn cursed the Demons that they would be destroyed. The Devas launched an attack on the Demons. Now, the Demons began to worry. Daruka, who received some special boons from Parvati, lifted the entire forest, took it away on the path of the sky and put it in the middle of the sea. Only then, did the Demons relax and continue to live there. They used to go by boats and capture the hermits and imprison them in the island. Once, there was a Shiva devotee by the name Supriya who was among the prisoners. He never ate food or drank water without worshipping Shiva. He continued to do Puja even while in prison.
When the guards informed their chief about this, he ordered that Supriya be put to death. Then Supriya prayed to Lord Shankara for his life. The Lord appeared before him immediately and destroyed the entire group of demons including their families. The Lord laid open the entire island for all the four classes of people for living. On the other land, Parvati here granted a boom to Daruka. As a result, at the end of that era, only Demons would be created and she would rule Daruka. Lord Shiva accepted.this.Then Shiva and Parvati stayed put there. Shiva once again assumed the form of Jyotirlingas, with the name Nageshwar and Parvati was known as Nageshwari.
The beauty architectural of the Nagesh Temple is simply exquisite. This temple is built with stones during the Pandavas period is strong. The four walls of the Temple are very strong and the corridors are large. The court hall is supported by eight pillars. It is oval shaped. Both this and the Nagesha Lingamurthy is located in the small internal Garbhagriha.
Here, there is no Nandi idol in front of Mahadeva. There is separate Nandikeshwara Temple at the back of the main temple. On all the four sides of the main temple, smaller temples for the twelve JyotirLingas are constructed. Apart from these, VedavyasaLinga, Bhandareshwar. Nilakanteshwar, Ganapati, Dattatreya, Muralimanohar, Dasavatar temple and idols etc. are there. In all, there are 108 Shiva temples and 68 shrines
The structure of the Naganath Temple is very beautiful. Inside it, there is another shrine called Runamochan Teerth. Both these shrines are called “Mother-in-law -Daughter-inlaw” shrines. Every 12 years, at the time of Kapila Shashti, Kashi Ganga offering as “Padarpan” is performed. During this the water in the Teerth Kund looks crystal clear. Again at a specific time it becomes “Shivala Yukt.”
Close to the Naganath temple, there are several statues of various gods. Besides these there are many more idols of animals, soldiers relating some stories. These stone idols are very beautiful to look at. At a huge corner, there is an idol of Parvati, whc is sulking with Shiva trying to pacify her.This statue is amazing to look at with its stunning features. It is unmatched in its expression of emotions. The Samadhis of Anandi Maharaj and Tupkari etc., the memorial of Visoba Kochar and Namdev are also located here. The Teacher Disciple story goes somewhat like this:
Once a gathering of saints was held in the house of Sant Gora Kumbhar in the year 1212, in the area of Oundhiya Naganath. Sant Gora Kumbhar who was a pot-maker, tapped on the heads of all those who attended the conference, as if he was testing an earthen pot. This act was performed in the most natural manner. At the end Kumbhar said, “all the pots of the saints are ripe, except Namdev’s whose pot is still raw.” Namdev was very angry on hearing this. He went away to Pandharpur and began complaining to Lord Vithoba about the rudeness of Kumbhar. Then Vitholba told him, “Till now you did not accept anyone as your guru, that is why your learning is still raw:” Namdev relented and was sorry for his behaviour. He wandered back to Oundhiya NaganathTemple.
Once, an old Shiva Devotee, by the name Visoba was moaning and rested his feet on the Lingamurthy. Namdev could not bear to look at this blasphemy. He went and asked the old man:’What are you doing old man? Are you out of your mind to put your feet on the Lord’s Lingamurthy? Remove your feet at once.” Then Visoba replied, “I am an old man. I cannot move my feet for lack of energy. I will be grateful if you can help me remove them. It will be very kind of your.”
Namdevji helped the old man in removing his feet from the Linga idol and tried to put it at another place. Wherever the old man’s feet touched the ground a fresh Linga would appear, with the feet on. This act was done several times and the same thing happened again and again.The feet would show on the Linga idol time and again. At last, Namdev accepted him as his Teacher and asked him to enlighten. Gurudev Visoba Khochar gave a discourse to Namdev, This, “The Lord’s existence is there in very form. There is no place where God does not exist.” Namdev, thus found a great Teacher in Vishoba Khochar. There is a tomb of Visoba Khochar in Oundhiya Naganath. It is also known as Gurusthan.
Once Namdev wanted to perform a Bhajan Kirtan in the temple of Oundhiya Naganath. He began to sing in praise of the Lord. Some old Brahmins were chaniing the Rudramantra just then. They felt disturbed by Namdev’s singing. They asked Namdev to go to the back of the temple and do his singing. He did so and started singing at the backside of the Temple. Then a miracle happened. The Temple turned backwards. Lord Shankara turned the face of the temple backwards to be able to listen to Namdev’s singing. The Brahmins felt remorseful. They went to Namdev and begged for forgiveness.
Aurangzeb was intolerant towards other religions and wanted to destroy this Hindu Temple. When he tried, thousands of bees came out of the Temple and attacked Aurangzeb and his army. He left the demolition work midway and went away. The devotees rebuilt the broken Temple.
Sometimes snakes with their hoods open can be seen standing guard on the Naganath Linga idol. When they drink the milk left in cups for them, is never known.
Jaya Shri Naganath.!! Jaya Shri Naganath !!