Aundha Nagnath Temple (one of the 12 Jyotirlinga Temples) in Hingoli, Maharashtra is dedicated to Lord Shiva who is worshipped as Lord Nagnath in this region. The devotees praying to Lord Nagnath believe that the Lord will guide them to the correct path of life, just as he did with demons at Darukavane.
Aundha Nagnath Temple – Facts
|Deity||Lord Nagnath (Lord Shiva)|
|Tours||5 Jyotirlingas of Maharashtra Tour|
|Darshan Timings||4:00 AM to 9:00 PM|
|Best Time to Visit||June to August|
|Festivals||Shravan Maas, Mahashivratri, Vijayadashami|
|Jyotirlingas in Maharashtra||Sri Vaidyanath, Sri Trimbakeshwar,|
Sri Grishneshwar, Sri Bhimashankar
Aundha Nagnath Temple is one of the 5 Jyotirlingas in Maharashtra. The other 4 Jyotirlingas are:
- Parli Vaidyanath Temple (in Parli)
- Trimbakeshwar Temple (near Nasik)
- Grishneshwar Temple (in Aurangabad)
- Bhimashankar Temple (near Pune)
What are the timings of Aundha Nagnath Temple?
The temple opens at 4:00 AM in the morning and closes at 9:00 PM in the evening. The temple also performs various rituals during this time. The devotees can be a part of these rituals such as the afternoon and evening aarti.
The timings of Aundha Nagnath Temple are as follows:
|Darshan||4:00 AM – 9:00 PM|
|Darshan during Shravan Maas||4:00 AM – 10:00 PM|
|Afternoon Pooja||1:00 PM – 1:30 PM|
|Evening Pooja||4:30 PM – 5:30 PM|
What is the significance of Aundha Nagnath Temple?
It is a popular belief that the Nagesh Linga or the Jyotirlinga is the Adhya or the first Jyotirlinga on Earth. Devotees believe that by praying at this temple, one can protect themselves against all kinds of poisons.
Since this form of Shiva is Nagnath since he has a snake around his neck. This association with snakes has led to a belief that this Linga is very powerful and potent against negating the harmful effects of all poisons. Devotees have often sighted snakes with open hoods guarding the Linga.
What is the history of Aundha Nagnath Temple?
The history of Aundha Nagnath Temple dates back to the period of Pandavas. Yudhistra, the eldest among the Pandavas, first built this majestic temple during his exile. It is also believed that Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb tried to raze down the Aundha Nagnath temple. But it is said that a swarm of bees attacked his men and Aurangzeb gave up and left the temple.
However, damages were made, to a certain extent, to this sacred Jyotirlinga. Later, Rani Ahalyabai Holkar, Queen of the Maratha Malwa Kingdom, repaired and renovated the temple.
Sant Namdev Maharaj was a well-known saint and poet. He is also considered as one of the Gurus in Sikhism and his writings are a part of Sri Guru Granth Sahib, the holy book of Sikhs.
It is believed that he used to sing praises of Lord Shiva every day at the temple. But the priests objected to this saying that it disturbed their routines. They drove him away. Since he was such a staunch devotee, the Lord turned the temple to face him and the priests were left facing the back of the temple. Thus, the entire temple stands rotated and directions of the Linga and Nandi are different from other temples.
What is the legend of the Jyotirlinga?
During their exile, the Pandavas built their hermitage in a forest in this region of Hingoli. The cows from their hermitage drank the water from the nearby river and released milk into the river. Bhima noticed this one day and informed Yudhistra.
The Pandavas felt the presence of a great God residing in the river. Thus, they began to remove the water. Beyond a certain point, the water was boiling hot. Bhima struck the river thrice with his mace. Blood started oozing from the spot and a Linga emerged. Yudhistra then built a temple and instated the Jyotirlinga.
What is the legend of Nageshwar Darukavane?
The Aundha region was lush with thick forests in which serpents lived. It was popular as Darukavane, named after the Asuras – Daruk and Daruka. The demons harassed the hermits living in the area and imprisoned them. This angered the Gods who fought the demons and drove them away.
But Daruka was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva and was blessed by a boon from Goddess Parvati.
The boon gave them the power to shift the entire forest into an island. And the demons continued to harass the hermits from the island. Among the imprisoned hermits was an ardent devotee Lord Shiva named, Supriya. She invoked the powerful Rudra Mantra along with the priests. Lord Shiva then appeared and destroyed the demons.
Daruka repented for their sins and asked for Lord Shiva’s forgiveness. He requested that he stay in the forest. Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati accepted his request and assumed the form of a Jyotirlinga. They stayed in Darukavane as Lord Nageshwar and Nageshwari.
What is the structure of Aundha Nagnath Temple like?
The Aundha Nagnath Temple structure is strong as it consists of stones from the Pandava period. Therefore, the temple is nearly 3000 years old.
The Garbhagriha and Linga are in the basement level and devotees have to climb down to worship the main deity. The Linga faces the South and the Gomukha faces the East. The corridors of this temple are huge and are supported by eight pillars in an oval shape. The Garbhagriha consists of the Nagesha Lingamurthi inside.
One of the shrines inside the Aundha Nagnath Temple complex houses the Runomochan Teerth as is also famous as Saas Teerth and Bahu Teerth (Mother-in-law and Daughter-in-law). Interestingly, the Saas Teerth has brackish water while the Bahu Teerth has sweet water. Once every 12 years during Kapila Shashti, the water from Kashi Ganga is offered here and the water of the teerth would turn crystal clear.
What are the poojas and rituals of Aundha Nagnath Temple?
The poojas that take place at Aundha Nagnath Temple are:
|Rudrabhishek Pooja||4:05 AM|
|Aarti Pooja||12:00 PM|
|Shrisnan Pooja||4:00 PM|
|Shejaarti Pooja||11:00 AM|
|Sayarakchai Pooja||8:30 PM|
The rituals that take place at Aundha Nagnath are:
|Rudrabhishek with Bhog|
|Char Somvar (four Mondays) Ek Ammavasya Rudrabhishek|
|Ek Shravan Maas Akhand Jyot|
|Rudrabhishek for one year every Somvar|
|Ek Somvar 1008 Bilva Patra Abhishek|
|Laghurudra by 11 Brahmins|
|Ek Shravan Maas Jalabhishek|
|Ek Shravan Maas Doodh and Bilva Patra Abhishek|
|Char Somvar Ek Ammavasya Rudrabhishek with Doodh|
|Ek Somvar 1008 Mahamrityunjaya Jaap|
What are the festivals celebrated at Aundha Nagnath?
Some of the festivals celebrated at Aundha Nagnath Temple are:
- Shravan month: Shravan Maas falls on the fifth month of the Hindu calendar, starting late July and ending by the third week of August.
- Mahashivratri: It is the day when Lord Shiva married Goddess Parvati. It usually occurs in late February to early March.
- Vijayadashami: Also known as Dussehra, this festival signifies the victory of good over evil and is celebrated after the nine days of Navratri.
How to reach Aundha Nagnath Temple?
Here’s how to reach Aundha Nagnath Temple:
- Air: The nearest airport is in Nanded which is 54 km from Aundha Nagnath.
- Rail: The nearest stations Parbhani is 50 km from the temple. One can also find connecting trains to the Hingoli junction.
- Road: There are buses connecting from Aurangabad, Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur and other nearby cities of Maharashtra.
Where to stay nearby?
There few accommodation options at Aundha Nagnath Temple. Travelers mostly stay at Nanded or Parbhani.
Where to eat nearby?
Restaurant options at Aundha Nagnath Temple are very few. Travelers eat at Dhabbas which one can find on the highway or at the hotels in Nanded and Parbhani.
What are some temples nearby?
Some of the temples near Aundha Nagnath are:
- Mallinath Digambar Jain Temple: The Mallinath Digambar Jain Temple is in Shirad Shahapur Village and is for Lord Mallinath. This 300-year-old temple is 15 km from Aundha.
- Parli Vaidhyanath Jyotirlinga Temple: This temple is in Parli, Beed District, Maharashtra. The temple is 118 km from the Aundha. Devotees believe that praying at this temple improves health conditions.
- Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga Temple: The Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga Temple is near Pune and is 465 km from Aundha Nagnath Temple.
- Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga Temple: This Jyotirlinga is in Verul, Beed District, Maharashtra. This temple is the last of the Jyotirlingas and for devotees who undertake the Jyotirlingas pilgrimage, a visit to this temple completes their journey. The Grishneshwar temple is 227 km from Aundha.
- Trimbakeshwar Jyotirlinga Temple: The Trimbakeshwar Temple is in the town of Trimbak, Nashik District, Maharashtra. The temple is 286 km from Aundha Nagnath Temple and the Linga has three faces symbolizing Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Brahma.
Frequently Asked Questions about Aundha Nagnath Temple
Yes, the Aundha Nagnath Temple is open all 365 days of the year.
The entry to the Aundha Nagnath Temple is free of cost.
No. There is no facility for online darshan available.
No. There is no facility for specially-abled and senior citizens.
June to August are the months when the monsoon starts in Maharashtra. The weather is pleasant, making it an ideal time to visit the temple.
The summers at Maharashtra start from March and continues until June. The summers here can be very hot. Temperatures during the day-time often go up to 36 º C.
In Maharashtra, winters start in November and continue until January. The temperatures during this time range from around 20 º C to 30 º C.