Who is Mahakal? The Mysterious God of time and death!

Who is Mahakal

Who is Mahakal? The mysterious god of time and death!

Hinduism is full of wonders. So is it’s gods and in these wonderful gods, one god is Lord Shiva. He is the most weird,amazing and fascinating god. It is said that he can attract anyone towards him. As you know that besides being worshiped in idols, images; he is also worshiped in Mahakal form. Now Who is Mahakal? 
In today’s blog post, I will tell you about Who is Lord Mahakal and why Shiva is called by the name of Mahakaleshwar.
A Jyotirlingam is a special and sacred Shivling of Lord Shiva which has divine and mystical powers. According to legends, there are 12 Jyotirlingas in India. These are Somnath in Gujarat, Kedarnath in Rudraprayag, Kashi Vishwanath in Varanasi, Mahakaleshwar in Ujjain, Omkareshwar in Khandwa, Bhimashankar in Maharashtra, Triambakeshwar in Maharashtra, Ramanathaswamy in Rameshwaram, Baidyanath in Jharkhand, Nageshwar in Gujarat, Mallikarjun in Andhra Pradesh, Grishneshwar in Aurangabad.
Just one of them, Mahakal, also known as Mahakaleshwar is located in the Ujjain district of Madhya Pradesh in India. It is located on the banks of Kshipra river. It also has a huge lake named Rudrasagar besides it.

Who is Mahakal?

Lord Shiva is said to be the deity of death and time. In Sanskrit language, Kal means time and death both. Now the one who defeats time and death both is known as Mahakal. Lord Shiva defeated time and death, so he is the worthy of bearing this name. Lord Shiva eternally reigns over the whole universe. He is the protector of his people and his kingdom. 
Once there lived an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva named as Markandeya. He started the worship of Lord Shiva right from when he was a child. years after years passed. Now he had become an adult of 25 years. But according to his Kundali, he only had a lifespan of 25 years. So now it was the time of his death. Lord Yama came to take his soul. 

At the time when he came, Markandeya was doing the worship of Lord Shiva. 
When he saw Lord Yama, He started enchanting the Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra. Impressed by Markandeya, Lord Shiva gave Markandeya a boon that he will be immortal till the end of the world. He said Lord Yama to leave him and go back. This shows us that he can defeat time and death also.

Story Behind Mahakal

In the Dwapur yug, There used to be the rule of King Agrasen  in Ujjain. He was an ardent devotee of Lord Mahakal. He had a friend, a shivgana ( followers of Lord Shiva) named Manibhadra. Once, Manibhadra gave King Agrasen, a Chintamani gem. The gem was very much precious and was having miraculous powers. 
The King wore like a locket on his neck. It was so much powerful that along Ujjain, the neighboring states also begin to prosper in wealth and properties. Seeing this the Kings of the neighboring states planned to attack Ujjain and get that gem. 
Now there also lived a Widow Gopi with her single child who was merely 5 years old. When the Kings of neighboring states attacked Ujjain, King Agrasen instantly started worshiping Lord Mahakal. At that time the Gopi, with her child, also came to worship Lord Shiva. The boy saw the King worshiping the lord. Inspired by him, He also took a stone and assuming it as a shivling, he started worshiping him. By worshiping him, he became so much lost in his work that when his mother called him many times but he didn’t replied. Seeing this, his mother became very much angry and came there. She threw the stone away and beat him with a stick.
Seeing his lord being insulted, the boy got deeply hurt. He started crying. He cried for hours. When he stopped crying, to his astonishment, he saw a huge magnificent temple had appeared there. In the sanctum sanctorum of that temple was a very beautiful shivling. When the King heard this news, he called that boy and his mother. He honored them with lots of treasuries and luxuries & went to the mystical and divine temple. He then worshiped Lord Mahakal. When the other Kings saw this, they realized their  mistake of being greedy and went to the temple and apologized Lord Mahakal.
Suddenly, the mightiest god, Lord Hanuman appeared there. He said “This shivling is a gift from Lord Shiva to this child. This child has got the blessings of Lord Mahakal. This boy will have 8 generations and in the 8th generation, Kin Nanda will born. In his house, the almighty Lord Vishnu will born himself as Lord Krishna.”

History of Mahakal

When there was the reign of Delhi Sultanate, between 1234-1235; the then Sultan Iltutmish attacked Ujjain. He raided the treasuries of the city. It is said that, at that time, the shivling was dismantled and thrown away in Kotiteerth Kund near the temple complex. After the raid, the shivling was established once again.
Around 500 years later, in 1734, Maratha Dynasty took Ujjain in it’s control. Then the further developments and architecture was built by the members of Maratha dynasty. After Independence of India, the temple came under the Collector office of Ujjain.

The Temple Structure

The temple complex was built by Ranoji Shinde; the general of Maratha Dynasty. The complex has approximately 1000 big and small shrines dedicated to different gods. The temple is located near the banks of Kshipra river. Also it has a lake besides it named Rudrasagar lake. 
The temple is three-story in which one story is underground. In the underground floor, Lord Mahakal, himself is established. In the first floor, Lord Omkareshwara is placed. The third storey places Lord Nagchandreshwar in it. The underground and second story are always opened for people but the third story is only opened on the day of Nag panchami.
The shivlingam is dakshinmukhi means that it is facing towards south. South is the direction of Lord Yama, the god of death. Here Lord Shiva is the god of time and death so he is south-facing. Lord Ganesh, Goddess Parvati and Lord Kartikeya are kept in east, west and north directions respectively.

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