On the bank of Narmada in Khandwa district of Madhya Pradesh, India, is Omkareshwar Temple, one of the twelve Jyotirlinga temples of Lord Shiva shaped like Om. Known as the fourth Jyotirlinga of Dwadasa, Omkareshwar means "lord of Omkar or Omkaar sound" in Indian. A temple with the same name, or another one that means Lord of the Immortals, is located on the south bank of the river Narmada, opposite Omkareshwar temple. There are similarities to Omkareshwar's importance, and this temple is also considered a Jyotirlinga. There are 108 Divya Shivlingas, 33 Koti Gods, and 68 tirthas located here in Omkareshwar, as mentioned in Skanda Purana, Vayu Puran, and Shiv Puran. According to mythology, Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga has a split nature. There are two parts of the Jyotirlinga: one in the Omkareshwar Temple and one in the Mahakaleshwar Temple.
The sacredness and tranquility of Omkareshwar are further enhanced by the meeting point of the rivers Narmada and Kaveri. Between the hills is a serene pool formed by the river Narmada, which appears as the Hindu symbol Om. Another scenic feature on the island is the 272 feet cantilever bridge.
Omkareshwar Temple, originally built during the Satyug age on the O-shaped island, has been rebuilt over time. A restoration project was carried out on the temple by the Paramaras in the 11th century. It underwent renovation in the 19th century by Ahilyabai Holkar, the ruler of Indore in the 19th century.
Sawan Somwar at Omkareshwar
As this month belongs to Shiva, Sawan also has great significance in Hinduism. An auspicious time of year to worship Shiva is now. This month is auspicious for Shiva Rudrabhishek, and it should take place on Monday. As part of Abhishek, you offer Bel Patra, Shami Patra, Kush, and Dhoop to Shiva, and afterward, you offer Bhang, Datura, and Shriphal as Bhog.
Shiva temples in Madhya Pradesh performed aarti and worship on the first day of Shravan month, which coincided with Shravan Monday. In addition to the special worship held in Mahakaleshwar, Omkoreshwar in Ujjain, Pashupatinath in Mandsaur, and Shiva temple in Bhojpur, several other religious sites are decorated as well. A safa lay around Bholenath after his praisings in the Mahakaleshwar temple. Since the Coronavirus spread throughout all temples, all temples have alternate arrangements for devotees who live far away to have darshan. People have been flocking to temples to see Lord Shankar since morning.
In addition to visiting Omkareshwar temple and doing Parikrama, devotees do the parikrama at Omkareswar kshetra. It is around 7-8 kilometers long, begins from Omkareshwar temple, and ends after surrounding it. There are many small temples, ashrams, resting places, and resting areas along the way. It says Adi Shankaracharya parikramased on his visit to Omkareswar Jyotirling during his lifetime. He learned Advaita from his Guru Sri Govindapada at Omkareshwar as sacred as holy dips in rivers Ganga and Yamuna, only river Narmada views have traditionally since been considered sacred.
There is great devotion and worship at Omkareshwar temple during Maha Shivratri, which lasts all night long. Mediation is also central to the celebrations. As part of the Maha Shivratri fair, temple trust members organize plenty of feasts (Bhandara) for devotees. Omkareshwar and Mamleshwar Jyotirlinga attract millions of tourists and devotees from all over India here. The festival of Kartik Purnima is celebrated with great zest, as is Ganesh Chaturthi and Anant Chaudas.
Omkareshwar temple is open to tourists all year long; however, September to March is the best time to visit the temple since you can enjoy the lush green hills and the entire waters of the river. Since millions of devotees arrive here, many hotels, guesthouses, and Dharmshala facilities are available to them and several restaurants. It is possible to hire a boat to ride on the river Narmada or pedal bridges to cross the temple.
Several folklores and tales have arisen around Omkareshwar, and these are a few of them.
The Hindu legend says that Vindya, the deity who possesses the Vindyachal mountain range, worshiped Shiva so the latter would heal him of his sins. Omkar and Amaleswara were two forms in which Shiva appeared to be pleased with the worship. In honor of the island's appearance as an Om mound, it is named Omkareswar. The temple contains a shrine dedicated to Parvati and Ganapati. Clay and sand help create a sacred geometric diagram and a Lingam.
In the second story, Mandhata's son did penance for his father's sins. During Mandhata's rule, he worshiped Lord Shiva here until he manifested himself as a Jyotirlinga (the abode of God). Similarly, scholars pointed out that Ambarish and Muchukunda were Mandhata's sons who had committed severe penances and austerities here and pleased Shiva. Mandhata is the name given to a mountain for this reason.
Embedded in Omkareshwar is a Shivlinga installed by Lord Kuber, credited with performing heavy penance for Lord Shiva. The Lord of Wealth became Kaber under the blessing of Lord Shiva.
In Hindu culture, the island was shaped into a gem during Satyuga, a mountain during Treta Yuga, a rock during Dwaparyuga, and a rock during Kaliyuga.
After visiting the Earth for the rest of the night, Lord Shiva makes his way to the Omkareshwar Mamleshwar temple every day. Because of this, temple priests perform Shayan Arti daily in praise of Lord Shiva.
A map and directions to Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga temple, Khandwa, Madhya Pradesh, India
The site is one of the 12 sacred Jyotirlingas of Madhya Pradesh, India. It is an ancient historical sacred site where millions of people worldwide come to worship. Pedal bridges or boats in the river Narmada are ways of reaching the temple. Hence, it enjoys excellent connectivity with all major cities in India on two modes of transportation: roads and rails. It is about 75 kilometers away from Omkareshwar to reach Indore's airport. Taxis and buses are available to get you here quickly. A railway station on Omkareshwar Road Mortakka connects major cities in Madhya Pradesh, just 12 kilometers from Omkareshwar. Khandwa and Indore are the two nearest major railway junctions, both around 72 km away. The distance between Omkareshwar and Indore is 78 km, 70 km, 137 km, 219 km, 257 km, 201 km, and 110 km. Highways on the state and national level allow access to Omkareshwar.