Aundha Nagnath

Believed by some to be one among the 12 Jyotirlingas, Aundha Nagnath Temple in Hingoli district is spread over an area of 60,000 square feet. This beautifully carved temple has numerous images of Lord Shiva and depictions of stories from Ramayana and Mahabharata etched on its walls. A unique thing about this temple is that the statue of Nandi does not lie in front of the main entrance; rather a separate Nandikeshwara temple has been built near the main temple. The sanctum sanctorum where the Shivling rests lies below the ground level. The main temple is surrounded by numerous other temples; with the tally being 108 Shiva temples and 68 Shiva shrines. Aundha Nagnath is also famous for its connection with revered poet-saint Namdeo (Bhagat Namdev). It is here that Sant Namdeo met his guru Visoba Khechar; who taught him that GOD is omnipresent. According to the legend, when Sant Namdeo asked Visoba to remove his feet from the sacred Shivlinga; he was amused to see that a Shivling would spring up wherever Visoba rested his feet. Another story goes on to say that when the temple priests asked Sant Namdeo to stay away as his bhajans were disturbing them; Lord Shiva rotated the temple to face Namdeo and to hear his soulful voice. It is said that founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak also visited Aundha Nagnath. Located about 152 kilometers from Akola, this sacred place is easily accessible by rail and road.

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