Among the 12 Jyotirling (Shrine of Lord Shiva) one is in Ellora, near Aurangabad.
Grishneshwar Temple Katha
There is an interesting story related to this temple. It is said that a Brahman named Sukarma and his wife Sudesh used to visit the Devagiri mountain ranges in the southern India. Both of them were devoted to Lord Shiva but did not have any child and this bothered them a lot. Sudesh used to force her husband to marry for a second time. Sukarma forced by his wife married her sister Ghushma.
Ghushma was also devoted to Lord Shiva and was blessed with a son. Ghushma received a lot of respect for providing Sukarma with a son but this envied Sudesh. When the son got older, he was married. This filled Sudesh’s heart with more jealousy. She decided to kill Ghushma’s son and one night killed him with a knife while everyone was asleep. She cut the whole body into pieces and poured them into the lake in which Ghushma used to pour Parthivlinga. She went back home and slept.
The next day everyone got busy in their everyday activities including Sudesh. When Ghushma’s daughter-in-law woke up and found pieces of her husband’s body in the bed covered with blood, she straight away ran off to Ghushma and started crying. Seeing this, even Sudesh started crying so that no one could doubt on her. But Ghushma and Sukarma went on with their daily activities and prayers. Ghushma and Sukarma went on with their prayers and showed as if they didnt feel a things. After finishing her prayers, Ghushma found her son’s blood-stained clothes and even this did not move her.
She believed in Lord Shiva and prayed. She believed that Lord Shiva was immortal and he was the one who blessed her with her son and only he would protect him. She patiently prayed and believed that being tense was not a solution. She started praying Lord Shiva’s mantra ‘Om Namah Shivay’. She went to the lake like everyday to pour Parthivlinga into the waters and saw her son standing besides the lake. Her heart filled with joy and Lord Shiva apeared.
Lord Shiva was very happy with Ghushma’s devotion and asked her to wish for something. He also said that if she wanted he could kill her sister with his Trishool. Ghushma offered her prayers and asked Lord Shiva to forgive her sister as she was elder than her. She said that she is unable to do any sin and would not want to ask for something bad for anyone. This satisfied Lord Shiva and he granted Ghushma with another wish. Ghushma asked Lord Shiva to stay in that place to protect and bless the people. Listening this Lord Shiva was happy and promised Ghushma to always live there. He changed his form and turned himself into a Jyotirlinga close to the lake. Hence, the lake called Ghushmeshwar came to be famously known as Shivalaya.
Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga Importance
It is believed that a glimpse of Shivalaya lake free a person from all sins and provides salvation. People wanting children are blessed. Just a glimpse of the Ghushmeshwar Jyotirlinga provides all the happiness and satisfaction in the world. Shankracharya also worshipped and offered prayers to the Ghushmeshwar Jyotirlinga.