Someshwar Mahadev Mandir (also known as Someshwar Nath Mandir) situated across the holy Yamuna River in Arail village is one of the eight important tirthsthalas of Prayagraj. This sacrosanct temple finds mention in the Padma Purana and Shiva Purana and is worshipped by all the devotees who participate in the Kumbha, Ardha Kumbha and Magha Mela.
According to the Hindu scriptures, Lord Chandra favoured Rohini the most among all his twenty-seven wives. Daksha Prajapati who had married his daughters to Lord Chandra became irate with the latter when his daughters complained to him about his overwhelming love and attachment to Rohini. Daksha cursed Lord Chandra and, in a moment, Lord Chandra became afflicted with tuberculosis (kshaya roga).
Lord Chandra was disheartened and sought refuge in Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu advised him to reside in Prayag and worship Lord Shiva. Lord Chandra consecrated a Shiva Linga and worshipped it with jala abhishek and spent years in tapas (penance and austerities). Lord Shiva pleased with his devotion gave him darshan and immediately Chandra was rid of his affliction. Lord Chandra is said to send showers of amrit (nectar) around this temple even today.
It is believed that Lord Rama offered prayers here during his exile. The temple structure was rebuilt by Peshwa Baji Rao I in 1735. Most of the idols that had been desecrated by Aurangzeb and the British are placed within the temple premises.
This temple was established by Lord Chandra and historical and archaeological evidence found at the temple site suggests that this temple has existed since the ancient times. The most fascinating feature of this temple is that the trishul (trident) on top of the temple moves in accordance with the movement of the moon around the earth! This phenomenon has been observed by scientists, physicists and locals with the former two having no explanation while the latter convinced of the potency of Someshwar Mahadev.
The priests say that one who bathes in the Chandra Kund for a month and offers prayers at Someshwar Mahadev will be rid of tuberculosis, leprosy and other ailments. Locals say that one who worships Someshwar Nath with devotion will be free from mental agony and physical ailments.
This temple was in the midst of a thick jungle previously but is now in the middle of the bustling city. There is a beautiful idol of Lord Hanuman, Lord Ganesha and others within the temple.
Lakhs of devotees make their way to this divine place in the month of Shravan and Margashirsha and during the auspicious occasion of Amavasya, Purnima and Maha Shivaratri. One can hear and feel the vibrancy of Lord Shiva in the mantras recited by the devout.
Written by Lakshmi Subramanian
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