Murudeshwara Temple is a renowned pilgrimage lying in the holy beach town in the Bhatkal Taluk in Uttara Kannada district region in the state of Karnataka, India. The mesmerizing temple is dedicated to the epitome of world protector, Lord Shiva. The small and beautiful beach town is well-known for it’s world’s second largest statue of Lord Shiva, and 20-storey high Gopura guarded by two king-size concrete elephants leading to the stairs. The recent modification of the Gopura and sky touching temple was done by the present businessman and philanthropist, R.N Shetty. The temple was entirely modernised, except the sanctum sanctorum, which remains dark and retains its composure.
The term ‘Murudeshwara’ is another name for Lord Shiva. By penance of devotion to Atma Linga Linga is a phallic shaped symbol of Shiva which is considered his source of power and is worshipped by Hindusto gain invincibility and immortality was a boon for the human gods. Ravana, King of Lanka worshipped Lord ShivaShiva
Shiva is one of the Supreme Gods of Hindu Trinity that ... with devotion to attain immortality by obtaining the Atma Linga. Lord VishnuVishnu
Vishnu is one of the Supreme Gods of Hindus and is a part of Hindu Trinity,.. tricked Ravana with the help of Lord NaradaNarada
Narada, also popularly known as Narada Muni, is a great Vedic sage and is one of the most significant and iconic characters of the Hindus. who disguised the genius man into a trap. When Lord Shiva appeared before Ravana, as per the plot, he said he wanted to take away Parvathi and Shiva fulfilled his desire.
On his way back to Lanka, Narada tricked Ravana yet again and made him change his way to Pathala where he married the daughter of the King. On reaching Lanka, Ravana’s mother asked about the Atma Linga, and then, he realised he was tricked. Without failing, he sat down to meditates to please Lord Shiva, the latter appears before him magically and he requests for Atma Linga.
Sage Narad realised that if immortality would be gifted to Lord Ravana, it would be a havoc on Earth and things would be dysfunctional. As approached Lord Ganesh, he took the form of a sage and disguised Lord Ravana. As Ravana was nearing Gokarna, Lord Vishnu blocked the sun to make it appear as dusk. Ravana now had to perform his evening rituals but was worried because with the AtmaLinga in his hands, he would not be able to do his rituals. At this time, Lord Ganesh, disguised as a Brahmin The conventional Hindu caste system divided society into four sects and Brahmin was known as the learned class who gained the knowledge of sacred texts written on Hinduismboy came near him.
Ravana requested him to hold the AtmaLinga until he performed his Puja, It is a prayer ritual performed to make offerings, honoring, evoking or worshipping gods. The ceremony can also be performed to pay homage to the beloved ones who are dead and told him not to place it on the ground. Ganesh struck a deal with him saying that he would call Ravana thrice, and if Ravana did not return within that time, he would place the AtmaLinga on the ground. As predicted, before Ravana could return after completing his rituals, Ganesh had already placed the AtmaLinga on the ground. Vishnu then removed his illusion and it was daylight again.
The world’s second-largest Lord Shiva statue
Also in the temple complex is the huge towering statue of Lord Shiva, which is visible from afar. The statue is 123 feet in height and it took about 2 years to build. The idol is designed such that it gets the sunlight directly and thus appears sparkling. Originally, the statue had four arms and was adorned in gold. However, strong gusts from the Arabian Sea blew one of the arms off and the rain dissolved the paint.
Location: Murudeshwara Temple is located in the small holy beach state of Karnataka.
Built In: The present modified temple structure is built by R.N.Shetty.
Dedicated To: The grand temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
Attraction: Some of the worthy places to visit along are:
- Murudeshwara Beach- The pristine sand beach is located near the temple where the statue of Lord Shiva is also visible. It makes way for most of the tourists vising the temple as it lies between Bhatkal and Honnar.
- Netrani Island- Netrani Island or the Pigeon Island is used for target practices by the Indian Navy. The island is one of the popular picnic spots among the local people and is visited for its Roman Catholic Church.
- Bhatkal Beach- The picturesque beach is located on the lines of the Arabian Sea in the middle of the Western Ghats at Kanduka Giri and is bounded by the coconut trees and hills, it provides for a breathtaking view.