Jyotirlinga shrines or the 12 shrines enshrining Siva in the form of a
Jyotirlingam, have been held in reverence in the Indian system of beliefs. These are the
places where God appeared in the form of light (Jyoti) lingam. There are twelve Jyotir
Lingam temples, spread throughout India. Puranas say that Siva's presence exist in these
The southernmost of these is located at
Rameswaram, while the northernmost is located in the snowy heights of the Himalayas at
Kedarnath. These temples are closely linked with legends from the puranas and are rich in
history and tradition.
- Somnath is the foremost of the 12
Jyotirlinga Shrines of Siva (at Prabhas Patan in Saurashtra in Gujarat)
- Sree Sailam - Mallikarjuna temple
near Kurnool (Andhra Pradesh)
- Ujjain - Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga
shrine (Ujjain or Avanti in Madhya Pradesh)
- Omkareshwar at
Amareswara: an island in the course of the river Narmada in Madhya Pradesh.
- Kedarnath - the Northernmost of the
Jyotirlingas. Kedarnath, nestled in the snow clad Himalayas (UP). It is accessible only on
foot, six months in a year.
- Bhimashankar at
Dakini - Associated with the legend of Siva destroying the demon Tripurasura. It is
located in the Sahyadri hills of Maharashtra, accessed from Pune.
- Varanasi - The Vishwanath temple in
Benarus in Uttar Pradesh
- Tryambakeshwar near Nasik - The
origin of the river Godavari is intimately linked with this Jyotirlinga shrine near Nasik
- Vaidyanath temple at Deogarh The
ancient pilgrimage town of Deogarh is in the Santal Parganas area of Jharkhand.
- Nageshwar near Dwarka
- Rameswaram: This vast temple in the
island of Rameswaram, in Southern Tamilnadu enshrines Ramalingeswarar, and is revered as
the southernmost of the 12 Jyotirlinga shrines of India.
- Grishneshwar at Ellora - Located in
the vicinity of the tourist town of Ellora in Maharastra, which has several rock cut
monuments from the 1st millennium CE.
The 12 jyotirlinga shrines