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Mahakaleshwar Temple Ujjain
There are 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva out of which 02 Jyotirlingas are located in Madhya Pradesh state of India. These two Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva located in Madhya Pradesh are known as Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga and Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga respectively.
Now, while Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga is situated in the Khandwa district of Madhya Pradesh on the banks of River Narmada, Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga is situated on the banks of River Kshipra in the ancient city of Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh. Out of these two Jyotirlingas, today we will talk about Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga.
Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga is also called by the name of Mahakal Temple in common parlance or by local devotees. Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga, revered as the third Jyotirlinga among the 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva, is a very ancient Shiva temple, the mention of which we find in Hindu religious texts, Mahabharata and the works of great poet Kalidas ji.
There is also a belief that the presiding deity in the form of Lingam installed in the temple is the self-proclaimed Lord Shiva. Among the 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva, Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga of Ujjain is the only Jyotirlinga that faces south and is supported by the Tantric Shivnetra tradition.
Among all the 12 Jyotirlingas, this is the only Jyotirlinga in which the Bhasma Aarti of Lord Shiva is performed. Apart from the 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva, Mahakal Temple is also revered as one of the 18 Shakti Peethas of Lord Shiva. According to a story related to Shaktipeeth, when Lord Shiva was carrying the dead body of Goddess Sati, his upper lips had fallen at this place.
Lord Shiva is also considered the god of time, which is why Lord Shiva has been ruling the ancient city of Ujjain for eternity. This is why Mahakaleshwar Jyotirling situated in Ujjain even today maintains an unbroken relationship with the ancient Hindu traditions with the residents of this city and the devotees who come here for darshan. Every year during Mahashivratri, a huge fair is organised near the temple and the vigil continues throughout the night.
Apart from this, during the months of Shravan or Bhadrapada and on the last Monday of Sawan, in the presence of thousands of devotees, the palanquin of Lord Mahakal is taken out from the main temple to the banks of river Kshipra, which is also called Shahi Sawari by the local people and devotees.
Mahakaleshwar Temple Ujjain History
According to Hindu Puranas and religious texts, the Mahakaleshwar temple was built by Lord Brahma himself. Ujjain is one of the oldest cities in the world and symbols of Lord Shiva have also been found in the coins found during excavations here.
A mythological story related to the construction of the temple and the appearance of Lord Shiva in the form of Mahakal in Ujjain is described in the ancient Hindu text Sthalapuranam. In ancient times, King Chandrasen was a great devotee of Lord Shiva. When a young man named Shrikhar learned about the king’s devotion to Shiva, he had a great desire to meet the king.
However, the residents did not allow him to do so and threw him out of the city. After being evacuated from the city, Shrikhar learns of a plan by King Chandrasena’s enemies King Ripudhaman and Simhaditya to attack the city with the help of a Rakshasa named Dushan. After this Shrikhar and a priest named Vriddhi start praying to Lord Shiva to protect the city of Avantika.
Here the enemy army reaches Avantika and starts torturing the innocent people there and all types of religious rituals are banned. After this, along with Shrikhar and Vriddhi priests, the city’s people also started praying to Lord Shiva for protection. According to the legend, at that time the ground near the idol of Mother Parvati bursts and Lord Shiva appears from it in the form of Mahakal.
And destroys all the demons in a single moment. After which the people of Avantika pray to Lord Shiva that he should always reside here as the main deity of Avantika, which Lord Shiva accepts. According to many poetic texts and historians, the Mahakaleshwar temple of Lord Shiva has been attacked many times and attempts have been made to destroy it.
For the first time, during the Parmar period, invaders attacked and destroyed the main temple, after which King Udayaditya and Naravarman rebuilt the temple. Even during the Mughal period, the Mahakaleshwar temple of Ujjain was attacked by Mughal invaders. In the early 13th century, Iltutmish, the third Mughal ruler of the Slave dynasty, attacked Ujjain and destroyed the temple.
It is believed that during that attack, the Mughal invaders destroyed the sacred Jyotirlinga and threw it into a nearby pond. (Today that place is also known as Koti Tirtha Kund.) At that time the Mughal invaders had looted almost all the gold, silver and valuable idols from the temple. After this, during the fourth and fifth decades of the 18th century, Maratha General Ranoji Shinde got the work of restoration of Mahakaleshwar temple during his reign.
At that time, the Diwan of Ranoji got the temple constructed in the Maratha architectural style, which is the present structure of the temple today. After this, for the next few decades, the work of temple management was done by the Maratha rulers only. After this, the responsibility of temple management is handed over to a trust named Dev Sthan. After India became independent in 1947, the Collector of Ujjain handed over the responsibility of temple administrator to the Dev Sthan Trust.
Mahakaleshwar Temple Architecture
The architecture of the ancient Mahakaleshwar temple located near a lake in Ujjain city of Madhya Pradesh is an amazing mix of Chalukya, Bhumija and Maratha Vastu styles. There are huge walls around the Mahakaleshwar temple with a total of five-storey buildings, while the fine-carved sculptures of the deities have been carved on the inner walls and pillars of the temple courtyard, there are many complex structures in the temple.
In addition to complex protections in the temple, praises, hymns and holy mantras dedicated to Lord Shiva are also written. The home house of the Mahakaleshwar temple with this five-storey building is built under the ground. And in this homehouse, the Dakshinamukhi idol of Mahakaleshwar is seen.
In the entire 12 Jyotirlingas, only the Mahakaleshwar temple of Ujjain is installed south. The linga of Omkareshwar and Nagachandreshwar has also been installed in the middle and upper parts of the premises of the Mahakaleshwar temple. But here it is worth noting that you can see the gender of Nagachandreshwar only on the day of Nag Panchami.
Only on the day of Nag Panchami, the darshan of Nagachandreshwar Lord is opened for common devotees. There is a large and ancient pond in the temple premises itself which is called Koti Tirtha Kund. There is a huge verandah outside this pool, near this verandah, the entrance to the homehouse of the temple is also built.
The temple’s home house also has beautifully carved sculptures of Goddess Parvati, Lord Ganesha and Lord Kartikeya in the north, west and east directions. Apart from this, a silver cover was installed to cover the roof of the house, which increases its grandeur even more. There is a chamber in the northern part of the verandah of the temple in which the idols of Lord Shri Ram and Goddess Avantika are worshipped.
Mahakaleshwar Temple Festival
Mahakaleshwar Temple is worshipped as the third Jyotirlinga among the 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva. However, all the festivals related to the Hindu religion are celebrated with great pomp throughout the year. But there are some religious rituals associated with this temple which are followed only in this temple.
One such ritual performed daily in the Mahakaleshwar temple is Bhasma Aarti. Bhasma Aarti is performed every day before sunrise in the Mahakaleshwar temple. It is a ritual in which ashes are collected from the ghats of the holy Kshipra river flowing in Ujjain and applied on the Jyotirlinga.
The most important thing about this ritual is that out of all the 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva, Bhasma Aarti is performed only in the Mahakaleshwar temple of Ujjain. And every day thousands of devotees come to Mahakaleshwar temple before sunrise to get the virtue of participating in this Bhasma Aarti.
To control the crowd of such a large number of devotees coming to attend Bhasma Aarti, the temple administration has started the system of tickets to attend Bhasma Aarti. To participate in Bhasma Aarti, you can book tickets for Bhasma Aarti from the official website of Mahakaleshwar Temple ( www.shrimahakaleshwar.com ) by paying the prescribed fee for attending Bhasma Aarti.
Like Bhasma Aarti, some other rituals are followed only in the Mahakaleshwar temple. One such puja is Nitya Yatra, to participate in which the devotee first has to take a bath in the Shipra river. After that, during this journey, the devotee visits Nagchandreshwar, Mahakaleshwar, Koteshwar temple, Goddess Harsiddhi and Goddess Avantika to get the blessings of longevity and prosperity from Mahakal.
Apart from this, the procession of Mahakal in Ujjain every Monday is in a way a procession of Lord Shiva, which passes through the streets of Ujjain every Monday. The Sawari Yatra of Mahakal is taken out every Monday so that the common people can easily have the darshan of Mahakal and Bholenath remove all kinds of evils from the city of Ujjain.
Lakhs of devotees from all over the country come to Ujjain to participate in the Mahakal procession taken out during the Andher fortnight of Bhadrapada. At this time, the Mahakal procession is taken out with great pomp.
Mahakaleshwar Temple Entry Fee
No entry fee is charged in Mahakaleshwar Temple. But if you want to easily see the Aarti happening in Mahakaleshwar temple or want to do darshan comfortably, then you will have to pay the fee prescribed by the temple administration. Apart from this, if you want, you can also get many pujas related to Lord Shiva done, for which the temple administration has fixed different types of fees.
Bhasm Aarti (Online)
Bhasm Aarti (Counter)
Shiv Mahima Path
Rudrabhishek Vedik Pooja
Shiv Mahima Stotra
Rudrabhishek (11 Verse) Rudra Path
Short Rudrabhishekam by 11 Brahmins (121 lessons)
Mahamrityunjaya chanting (1.25 lakh chanting)
Note:- 01 To do Bhasma Aarti booking, speedy darshan booking, Garbha Graha booking and many other types of pujas in Mahakal temple, you can easily do it with the help of the temple’s official website (www.shrimahakaleshwar.com) and Android app Can get booked.
02 Bhasma Aarti is performed every day from 04:00 am to 06:00 am. Entry into Bhasma Aarti is not allowed after 05:00 am.
03 If you have made an online booking for darshan or any kind of puja in the temple, then carry the receipt related to that booking with you.
04 Be sure to carry any form of identity proof along with your booking receipt.
05 All rights related to entry, aarti and darshan in the temple are reserved with the temple administration committee.
Mahakaleshwar Temple Timings
Mahakaleshwar Temple in Ujjain remains open for devotees to visit from 04:00 am to 08:00 pm.
Mahakaleshwar Temple Aarti Timing
04:00 AM To 06:00 AM
07:00 AM To 07:30 AM
05:00 PM To 05:30 PM
Shree Mahakal Aarti
07:00 PM To 07:30 PM
Note:- 01 Mobile phones are not allowed inside the Mahakaleshwar temple.
02 The temple committee has provided the facility for the devotees to deposit their phones.
03 However, no kind of dress has been prescribed by the temple committee for the devotees to visit the temple.
04 But if devotees do any kind of puja or abhishek, then men are required to wear dhoti kurta and women are required to wear saree.
Shri Mahakal Mahalok / Shri Mahakal Corridor
is Dedicated to Lord Shiva and to provide a grand and divine spiritual experience to the devotees who visit the Mahakaleshwar Temple in Ujjain, the Madhya Pradesh Government has constructed a grand temple complex named Shri Mahakal Mahalok near the Mahakaleshwar Temple in Ujjain in 2022.
Which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 11 October 2022. Shri Mahakal Mahalok Complex is likely to be fully constructed by the year 2025. Initially, this temple complex was spread over only 2.87 hectares, which has now been expanded to 47 hectares.
The estimated cost of building this complex is approximately Rs 856 crore. A huge chain of 108 divine pillars has been built in the Shri Mahakal Mahalok complex for the devotees. Apart from this, a grand entrance gate has been created to enter the complex and space for free roaming around the temple has been created.
On the premises, the stories described in Shiv Purana have been shown in a very beautiful way through graffiti. The main objective of the construction of the Shri Mahakal Mahalok Complex was to establish the ancient city of Ujjain as a major Hindu religious pilgrimage site and to promote tourism.
Many infrastructure and facilities have been created for the devotees visiting this complex.
The approximately 900-meter-long Mahakal corridor connects Shri Mahakal Mahalok with the main entrance and sanctum sanctorum of the Mahakaleshwar temple. Apart from this, this corridor is decorated with many beautiful sculptures and frescoes depicting the life of Lord Shiva.
The approximately 500-meter Mahakal Path leading to the Mahakaleshwar Temple is decorated with trees and many sculptures.
This museum is mainly dedicated to the history and importance of Mahakaleshwar Temple. Many artefacts, statues and paintings related to Lord Shiva and the temple have been collected in this museum.
Cultural and religious programs are organized from time to time in this auditorium.
Multimedia shows depicting the life of Lord Shiva are run in Mahakal Darshan.
Best time to Visit Mahakaleshwar Temple
Although Mahakaleshwar Temple is open for devotees throughout the year, the period from October to March is considered the best time to visit Kashi Vishwanath Temple.
Hotels Near Mahakaleshwar Temple
There are many Dharamshalas, guest houses and hotels for stay near the Mahakaleshwar Temple located in Ujjain. You can book almost all Dharamshala, Guest House and Hotels online or by telephone. Apart from this, through many online hotel booking websites, you can also book a room for yourself in a hotel or Dharamshala near Mahakaleshwar Temple.
How to reach Mahakaleshwar Temple
How to reach Mahakaleshwar Temple by Air
Maharani Ahilyabai Holkar Airport of Indore is the nearest airport to Mahakaleshwar Temple of Ujjain. From this airport, you can easily reach Mahakaleshwar Temple with the help of a taxi and cab. The distance from Indore to Mahakaleshwar Temple is only 56 minutes.
Indore’s Maharani Ahilyabai Holkar Airport is well-connected to almost all the big cities of the country like Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur, Chandigarh, Madras, Kolkata and Bangalore. Regular flight services to Indore Airport will be available from all these airports.
How to reach Mahakaleshwar Temple by Rail
The nearest railway station to Mahakaleshwar Temple is Ujjain City Junction Station. The distance of Mahakaleshwar Temple from the railway station of Ujjain is only 02 kilometres. From here you can easily reach Mahakaleshwar Temple with the help of a cab and taxi.
Ujjain City Junction Railway Station is very well connected to all major railways of the country. And you will get regular trains from almost all the major cities of the country to Ujjain Railway Station.
How to reach Mahakaleshwar Temple by Road
Ujjain city of Madhya Pradesh is very well connected by road to almost all the cities of the country. Apart from this, if you are coming to Ujjain by bus then the main bus stations of Ujjain are Dewas Gate and Nanakheda. Apart from this, you can also reach Ujjain very easily by your vehicle. Apart from this, you can reach Ujjain very easily with the help of a cab and taxi.
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