What is Shivling – Myth & Truth

There are multiple stories explaining Shivling and each of them contain different information. It has also been misinterpreted that a Shivling refers to male genital! We invested some time to find the myth and truth about Shivling and explaining the same in this post. The real meaning and explanation of Shivling has been derived from Shiv Puarana.

Once upon a time students asked Guru Sutji about the story behind Shivling worship, then he replied that this question can be answered only by Lord Shiva. He continued that Lord Shiva is the only one who is known as ‘Brahma Roop’ (divine form). This mean he doesn’t have any form or body shape like living things and his formless (निराकार) existence is worshiped as Shivling.
Lord Shiva is also worshiped in form of deity (साकार). In this form Lord Shiva appeared as an idol.
Guru Sutji again explained that on Mandarachal mountain Sanat Kumar asked Nandi (mount of Lord Shiva) the same question i.e. story behind worship of Shivling.
  • Nandi narrated a story where Lord Shiva appeared in the form of a ‘pillar of light’ (Jyotirstambha – ज्योतीस्तंभ) and asked Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu to find the top end and bottom end of that pillar!
  • Lord Bramha started to find top end of the pillar and Lord Vishnu moved forward to find bottom end of the pillar.
  • It looked like both the Gods were unable to find top end and bottom end. However, Lord Brahma attempted to prove that he found the top end of the pillar and asked flower ketaki to become the witness of this. Flower ketaki agreed to Lord Bramha’s request.
  • Lord Shiva knew that it’s not possible to find any end of the pillar and he cursed ketki flower that it will never be used in Lord Shiva worship and Lord Brahma will never be worshiped like other gods.
  • After this, Lord Bramha and Lord Vishnu worshiped the pillar form of Lord Shiva which was later converted into Shivling by Lord Shiva (So that devatas can easily preach the linga for their wish completion). That day is known as Shivratri and Lord Shiva told that whoever will worship him in the lingam form on Shivratri will get his blessings.
  • Pillar form of Lord Shiva was infinite and was burning with fire and Lord Shiva converted that in lingam form known as Shivling (Shivlingam – शिवलिंग).
  • As mentioned in Shiva Purana, Shivling is the most preferred way to worship Lord Shiva. Chant ‘Om Namah Shivay’ when you worship Shivling and Chant ‘Shiva Panchakshara Stotram’ when you worship idol form of Lord Shiva.

In a nutshell,

Shivling is the formless existence of Lord Shiva, which is established across every temple and being worshiped by us.

Shiva Panchakshara Stotram

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