Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga temple history can be found in the Shiv Purana, with some famous controversies. Three locations in mythological that claim to be Darukavan. Certain says that Daarukavan became known as Dwarka; therefore, the current Jyotirlinga is the original temple. However, no evidence of a forest around this area. 

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Nageshwar Jyotirlinga

Some refer to Darukavan m as the Deodar (Daru) forest near Almora in Uttarakhand. The Nageshwar jyotirlinga might be the one in the Jageshwar temple in that town. The third possible location of Daarukavan is the woods of Vindhya in Maharashtra in the Hingoli district. There too, is a linga in the Aundha Nagnath Temple. There is no way to discern exactly where the original Jyotirlinga is. However, the popular faith points to the Nageshwar temple in Gujarat; hence, this is the location counted as one of the 12 jyotirlingas of India. I cross-checked with my mom’s encyclopedia, who agreed with me.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Renovated temple

The Jyotirlinga temple is a 4hrs 21 min drive, approx 250km; but the roads were great.

Drive towards Jyotirlinga

On the way, we halted for some time at the Madhavpur beach. The sky looked like a curtain of silk; as the opera of the sea washed over me. The wave music was welcoming and soothing. And I was content with getting away from the hurly-burly and stresses of life. 

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Madhavpur Shiv Linga

I walked along the sea, dressed in a cerulean-grey gown, and the beach seemed dipped in earthshine gold. The only thing my mind could think You are here to savour the sea’s indescribable beauty and let its vastness seep into your mind. With luck, you will carry fragments of it home as a memory.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Madhavpur Beach

By the time we reached, it was noon, and at the entrance of the Nageshwar Jyotirlinga temple, we were greeted by the towering idol of Shiva. This 25m high statue of Shiva dominates the Nageshwar temple- a strange spirit emanates from it. I froze there, staring at the serene face. I did feel vulnerable yet protected at the same time.

Entrance to the temple

The gaze and aura of the Lord shiva statue struck me powerfully. I wondered what the linga inside this Shiva Temple would make me feel. However, his eyes pierced my soul, while his calm demeanour kept me grounded. This gigantic Shiva statue at the temple entrance has something magical about it. Along with it followed controversial and intriguing folklore enclosed within a strong coat of faith. That fascinated me! It was as if his eyes were.

25m high statue of Shiva

I walked inside the temple as the actual linga resides below the ground level. The old temple is around the Lord shiva statue, which was in dilapidated condition & repair work was on. The new modern red and white temple was constructed courtesy of T series fame Gulshan Kumar. However, the building has been built around the original linga. Hence, when I finally entered the building, a few feet below the ground level, I found the Garba Griha or the Sanctum Santorum.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Temple sanctum

Upon reaching the Garba Griha or the Sanctum Santorum, we paid at the counter for Rudra Abhishek of the shiva linga. The Nageshwar linga is termed tri-Mukhi rudraksha. The three-faced rudraksha is believed to be powerful, and the linga is accompanied by the statue of Goddess Nageshwari, aka- Parvati. 


The shrine and the surrounding area are devoid of any significant carvings. And the Goddess Durga statue faces the entrance of the Garba Griha. And it was a recent addition to the Nageshwar temple during the renovation.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Goddess Durga

Three pandits did the Rudra Abhishek for us, chanting the mantras in a rhythm. Later they also told us the history behind the Jyotirlinga. One of the legends states long ago, a demon couple, Daruk and Daruka, dwelt in the forest. It is said that Daruka was a fervent devotee of Goddess Parvati. And with her fierce devotion secured herself with a boon- That the forest would follow her no matter where she went. However, Daruk had no such faith. Instead, he used to terrorize people around the forest. That came to be known as Darukavan.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Rudra Abhishek

In the same forest lived a merchant by the name of Supriya. He was a staunch devotee of Lord Shiva. Daruk captured and tortured the merchant. But throughout the torture, Supriya kept chanting Om Namah Shivaya“. And the result was that no harm seemed to happen to him. On observing the same, Daruka realized that he was a true devotee of the Lord, and she feared the wrath of Lord Shiva. To escape the same, she moved the entire set-up to under the ocean, taking the forest with her. Even there, in prison guarded by sea snakes and monsters, Supriya remained unfazed and kept his chanting going.

Way to the temple

Lord Shiva, pleased with Supriya’s devotion, appeared and destroyed Daruk. When he left, he manifested himself as the Jyotirlinga, ensuring that his protection always remained in Darukavan. The Lord came to be known as Nageshwar and Parvati as Nageshwari. The temple is sometimes also referred to as the Nagnath temple.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Naag & Naageswari

Though this is the most popular version of Nageshwar Jyotirlinga, there is another version of Nageshvar Jyotirlinga’s appearance. This one involves the actual linga (phallus) of Lord Shiva. According to the tale, to test the devotion of some dwarf priests, Lord Shiva appeared as a nude hermit – his body was covered with snakes. Looking at him, these sages’ wives attracted the handsome stranger. This angered the dwarf priests, who unknowingly cursed Shiva to lose his lingam. The body part fell onto the earth, and its divine power started causing an earthquake. Hence Lord Vishnu and Brahma implored Lord Shiva to save the world. And requested to bring back his linga. Appeased, Lord Shiva did the same and left his presence in the Nageshwar Jyotirlinga.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Nageshwar Lingam

Earlier the temple used to be a smaller housing, the divine Jyotirlinga only. As per historians, Aurangazeb, the Mughal emperor, tried to destroy the temple but failed. Every time his army attacked, a seethe of bees would drive them away. Aurangazeb ultimately gave up. Therefore, the Nageshvar Jyotirlinga survived the passage of time.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Shiva Family

It was almost 4.30 pm when we got free with all chores of worship & offers. With one last glimpse of the Linga, I moved out to quickly capture the sights around the temple. There isn’t much. The two essential things were spotted by me- one a statue of Shiva’s entire family beneath a banyan tree. Another is a pond full of fish behind the temple. 

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Pond at the back of the temple

I could not help but walk to the giant Shiva statue for the last time. And the previous gaze of his made me feel calm and composed with the world. I bid farewell to this mighty Nageshwar Jyotirlinga temple with a quiet prayer.

Lord Shiva

Later we eat lunch Kathiawadi cuisine for lunch at a local restaurant.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Kathiwadi food

It was delicious! After that, we visited the Sana Buddhist Caves. A Buddhist influence in ancient times and a complex network of 62 caves. It lies on the outskirts of Somnath. We spend time admiring these artificial shelters before heading back to the hotel.

Nageshwar Jyotirlinga: The Tri-Mukhi Rudrashk Linga.
Sana Buddhist Caves

On my way, I wondered how a particular atmosphere at the Shiva temples makes you feel at ease. And I am sure you would want to visit it.

How to reach

By Air: 

Porbandar (107 km) and Jamnagar (126 km) are closest to Nageshwar Jyotirlinga. You can book a cab or auto outside the airport to reach the temple. 

By Rail: 

The nearest railway station is Dwarka Railway station., about 18 km away. Dwarka has rail connections to Ahmedabad, Mumbai, and other nearby cities. 

By Road:

State buses of Gujarat, as well as private buses, ply to Nageshwar Jyotirlinga at regular intervals. One can also hire a cab or taxi and reach the temple. Since the temple is 18km from Dwarka, the roadways are well-connected to major cities like Veraval, Rajkot, Porbandar, Somnath, etc. If you wish you can drive from these cities too in your vehicle.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Translate »
error: Content is protected !!