DWADASA JYOTIRLINGA STOTRAM:
सौराष्ट्रे सोमनाधञ्च श्रीशैले मल्लिकार्जुनम् । उज्जयिन्यां महाकालम् ॐकारेत्वमामलेश्वरम् ॥
पर्ल्यां वैद्यनाधञ्च ढाकिन्यां भीम शङ्करम् । सेतुबन्धेतु रामेशं नागेशं दारुकावने ॥
वारणाश्यान्तु विश्वेशं त्रयम्बकं गौतमीतटे । हिमालयेतु केदारं घृष्णेशन्तु विशालके ॥
एतानि ज्योतिर्लिङ्गानि सायं प्रातः पठेन्नरः । सप्त जन्म कृतं पापं स्मरणेन विनश्यति ॥
Lord Shiva of the Srisailam hill is a Swayambulinga (self-manifested) and is revered as one of the 12 Jyothirlingas of India, the holiest of holy shrines of Lord Shiva. The unique feature of this kshetram is the combination of Jyothirlingam, Lord Mallikarjuna Swamy and Mahasakthi, Goddess Bhramaramba Devi in one campus, which is very rare and only one of its kind.
The shrine of Lord Mallikarjuna picturesquely situated on a flat top of Nallamalai Hills, Srisailam is reputed to be one of the most ancient kshetras in India. It is on the right side of the River Krishna in Kurnool District of Andhra Pradesh. This celebrated mountain is also named as Siridhan, Srigiri, Sirigiri, Sriparvatha and Srinagam. It has been a popular center of Saivite pilgrimage for centuries.
Present temple is constructed around 1234 AD by the Hoysala King, Vira Narsimha.
The Srisailam hills are also sacred to the Buddhists. Saint Nagarjuna lived here in the first century AD. Chinese travellers Fahian and Hieun Tsang have described this pilgrim centre as Sri Parvatam and a Bhuddhist centre.
The Mallikarjuna Linga is accessible to each and every devotee and anybody can go into the sanctum sanctorum of Mallikarjuna, touch him and perform Abhishekam and Archana himself to recitation of Mantras by Archakas without caste or creed or religion.
The name of Srisailam kshetra is chanted with reverence in the sankalpa mantra during ritual bath in holy places. The devout believe that one can attain mukti by taking birth at Srisailam. The sanctity of the hill is extolled in Mahabharatha, Skanda Purana and many other religious scriptures.
Legend as per Shiva Purana:
When Kumara (Karthikeya) returned after circumambulating the earth and saw Ganesh, his younger son had gotten married before him, he was very upset and went to the mountain Kraunca though forbidden by his parents. Goddess Parvati was extremely distressed due to separation from her son. Shiva too was extremely miserable. Grief-stricken and distressed, they went to the place where their son was. Coming to know of the arrival of his parents, from the top of the mountain Kumara went thirty-six kilometres further out of disregard for their love. When he went further on the Kraunca hill, Shiva and Parvati stayed behind assuming the fiery form. That phallic image of Shiva born of Mallikarjuna Out of filial affection they used to visit Kumara on the concluding day of every fortnight. Shiva had visited there on Amavasya day and Parvati on the Full moon day. He who sees that phallic image becomes rid of all sins and attains all desires. Shiva in the form of the Linga, was worshipped with Mallika (Jasmine). Hence, the name, Mallikarjuna.
Reference: Shiva Purana, Koṭirudra Saṃhita, Chapters - 15
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