The Shiva Purana

by J. L. Shastri | 1970 | 616,585 words

This page relates “greatness of shivalingas” as found in the Shiva-purana, which, in Hinduism, represents one of the eighteen Mahapuranas. This work eulogizes Lord Shiva as the supreme deity, besides topics such as cosmology and philosophy. It is written in Sanskrit and claims to be a redaction of an original text consisting of 100,000 metrical verses.

Chapter 2 - The greatness of Śivaliṅgas

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

Sūta said:—

1. Kāśī on the banks of the Gaṅgā is very famous as the bestower of liberation. It is full of phallic images. It is the abode of Śiva.

2. The important phallic image there, is Avimuktaka. Kṛttivāseśvara is in the forms of an aged man and a boy.

3. Tilabhāṇḍeśvara is in Daśāśvamedha. Saṅgameśa is at the place where the Gaṅgā meets the sea.

4. What is called as Bhūteśvara is the bestower of all to the devotees. What is famous as Nārīśvara stands near the Kauśikī river.[1]

5. Vaṭukeśvara is on the bank of the Gaṇḍakī river.[2] Pūreśvara stands on the bank of the Phalgu river[3] and is the bestower of happiness.

6. Siddhanātheśvara is the bestower of Siddhi at the very sight. What is famous as Dūreśvara is in the northern Patan.

7. Śṛṅgeśvara as also Vaidyanātha are famous. What is famous as Japyeśvara stands at the battle-ground of Dadhīci.

8-10. Gopeśvara, Raṅgeśvara, Vāmeśvara, Nāgeśa, Kāmeśa, Vimaleśvara, Vyāseśvara, Sukeśa, Bhāṇḍeśvara, Huṃkāreśa, Surocana-Bhūteśvara and Saṅgameśa are the destroyers of great sins.

11. Kumāreśvara is on the banks of the Taptakā[4] river. Siddheśvara and Seneśa are famous.

12. Rāmeśvara, Kumbheśa, Nandīśvara, Puñjeśa and Pūrṇaka in the city of Pūrṇā,[5] (are all great shrines).

13. Brahmeśvara was formerly installed at the holy centre of Daśāśvamedha at Prayāga by Brahmā. It is the bestower of the fourfold aims of life.

14. Someśvara wards off all adversities. Bhāradvājeśvara increases Brahmacarya.

15. Śūlaṭaṅkeśvara is the bestower of desires. Mādhaveśa, there itself, protects devotees.

16. O noble sages, what is called Nāgeśa is installed in the city of Sāketa.[6] The Shrine is particularly the bestower of happiness to those born of the solar race.

17. Bhuvaneśa in the city of Puruṣottama[7] is the bestower of good Siddhis. Lokeśa and Mahāliṅga bestow all bliss.

18. Kāmeśvara is also Śiva’s phallic image. Gaṅgeśa causes great purity. With a desire for the welfare of the people the shrines Śakreśvara and Śukrasiddha exist.

19. Vaṭeśvara is famous as the bestower of the fruits of all desires. Kapāleśa is on the shore of the ocean. Vaktreśa is the destroyer of all sins.

20. Dhautapāpeśvara himself is partially the supreme lord. Bhīmeśvara, Sūryeśvara are great shrines.

21. Nandeśvara is the bestower of knowledge and as such is worshipped by the world. Nākeśvara is highly meritorious. So also is Rāmeśvara.

22. Kaṇṭakeśvara is named Vimaleśvara as well. So also is Dhartukeśa at the confluence of the Pūrṇā and the ocean.

23. Candreśvara should be known as the bestower of the lustre of the moon as fruit. Siddheśvara is the bestower of all desires.

24. Bilveśvara is famous and so also is Andhakeśa where the Daitya Andhaka was formerly killed by Śiva.

25. Śiva assumed his form partially and became famous as Śaraṇeśvara. He is the bestower of happiness to all the worlds always.

26. Kardameśa is the greatest. Koṭīśa is on the mountain Arbuda. Acaleśa is famous as the bestower of happiness to all the people always.

27. Nāgeśvara is stationed on the banks of the Kauśikī for ever. What is named Ananteśvara is the receptacle of all welfare and auspiciousness.

28. Yogeśvara, Vaidyanātheśvara, Koṭīśvara and Sapteśvara are also famous.

29. Bhadreśvara is very famous. Bhadra is Śiva himself. So also are Caṇḍīśvara and Saṅgameśvara.

30. Thus the phallic forms of Śiva installed in the eastern quarter of ordinary and extraordinary efficacy have been narrated to you.

31. O great sage, I shall now narrate to you the phallic images of Śiva installed in the South.

Footnotes and references:


It is the modern Kosi that issues from the Himalayas, flows through Nepal and Tirhut and joins the Ganges below Patna; but originally the river passed through North Bengal and fell into the Brahma putra. See Sircar, ‘Studies in the Geography of Ancient and Medieval India’ (D. C. Sarkar) P. 42.


Gaṇḍakī (mod. Gaṇḍaka) is the famous tributary of the Ganges and joins the river near Sonepur in the Muzaflar District, Behar. Ibid pp. 39, 42.


This sacred river flows through the Magadha country.


Taptakā (Tāpī or Tapatī) issues from the Vindhya mountain, flows through the Vindhya region and falls into the Arabian sea.


Pūrṇā, a tributary of the Tapti river joins the latter in Eastern Khaṇḍeśa near Burhanpur.


It is identical with Ayodhyā or a suburban town situated near it.


Puruṣottamapurī is identical with Bhuvaneśvara (in Orissa) or with a town in that region.

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