Lord of Destruction, Shiva, is also known as Ashutosh because he could be easily appeased by his devotees. Shiva is the Supreme Reality, our inner self. He gets extremely pleased with devotees who recite ‘Om Nama Shivaya that means ‘Salutation to Lord Shiva’. Shiva purifies the heart of the chanter of this Shiva Mantra.
Shiva is also the greatest Immolator. For the benefit of the universe, He swallowed the poison churned out of Samudra or ocean. He then experienced immense heat inside. Lord Indra ordered sky to shower rain for dousing his body. To this day, devotees pour milk and water on Shivalingas to appease Shiva. The sacred river Narmada is Shiva’s daughter. Omkareshwar is a pilgrim town in Madhya Pradesh where one of the twelve ‘jyotirlingas is situated. It is 70 km away from Indore.
Om is the first syllable of the Shiva Mantra and the city is named after Omkareshwar, depicting Shiva. Of all the gods, Shiva passes on to his devotees, his bliss and bounty, unhesitatingly and indiscriminately. He is therefore fondly known as ‘Bhole Baaba”.
The Omkareshwar temple is situated on the island of Mandhata on the bank of the river Narmada, 20 km away from Mortakka. The universal Creator has made structure of this island to look, shaped as the symbol of ‘OM’. Besides the Omkareshwar Temple, visitors can have the darshan of Amareshwar that signifies immortality. Omkareshwar is situated at the confluence of the rivers Narmada and Kavery Therefore it offers, sanctity, purity, serenity and natural beauty to the visitors. A walk around the temples or ‘parikrama’ adds immensely to the positive energy.
The very presence of Lord Shiva long with his daughter Narmada has made the holy town more religious. As a result, a number of temples, enshrining different deities have been established at Omkareshwar. A visitor having religious bent of mind can fulfill all his religious fervor by paying darshan at other temples such as Kedareshwar Temple, Mamleshwar Temple, Ahilya Ghat, Satmatrila Temples, Ranmukteshwar temple,Gouri Somnath temple, 24 Avtar groups of temples
Visitors would be spiritually levitated to visit the Sri Govinda Bhagbatpaada Cave where peace, serenity and calmness prevail with absolute wilderness. Because of the divine ambience, Sankaracharya took his diksha and spiritual education from the great sage, Govind Bhagwatpad. Taking advantage of this rare environment of peace, visitors practice meditation to find the Supreme Reality within. Kajal Rani Cave is another such place offering absolute serenity.
Omkareshwar has extreme climates. During summer, mercury touches the highest off 45 degree Celsius and during winter, it falls down to 6 degree Celsius. The best period for visiting Omkareshwar is during October to March. Those having particular devotion for Lord Shiva will be enthralled to participate in the Maha Shivaratri festival that is celebrated during February to March.
We purify ourselves by praying. Prayer is an act of surrendering to the Supreme and it connects us with the Supreme. By seizing the opportunity of being in the sacred ambience of Omkareshwar, one can transform one’s life into a prayer and encounter the challenges of life bravely.