Located in Srisailam, in the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, the Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga is one of the 12 jyotirlingas spread all across the country where it is believed Lord Shiva had appeared as a fiery column of light, and these jyotirlingas convey the infinite nature of Lord Shiva. The Mallikurjuna Jyotirlinga is the second in the series of 12 right after the Somnath Jyotirlinga situated in Saurashtra in the north western state of Gujarat in India.
The Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga is housed in the Sri Mallikarjuna Jyotirlinga Temple also known as the SrisailamMallikarjuna Swamy Temple. The roots of this according to legend goes back to ages ago, when Lord Shiva and his wife Goddess Parvati were looking for suitable brides for their two sons Lord Ganesha as well as Lord Kartikeya. The two brothers got into an argument on who would get married first and being a peacemaker, Lord Shiva suggested that whoever goes round the world in Pradakshinam, will be the one to get married first among the two brothers.
Lord Kartikeya being his enthusiastic self, hurried to complete the task assigned by his father, however, before he could even go ahead with it on his vahana, it was Lord Ganesha, who took seven rounds around his parents, and since according to the Shastras, taking those seven rounds around one’s parents is equivalent to pradakshinam around the world, and thus, this made Lord Ganesha win the task assigned, and as promised, Lord Shiva got him married to Buddhi, standing for intellect, Siddhi, standing for spiritual power, and lastly, Riddhi, standing for prosperity. When Lord Kartikeya returned, he was furious seeing his brother already married and him not winning the task and due to this, he went to Mount Kravunja with the name of Kumarabharmachari, in order to stay alone.
When Lord Kartikeya saw his father Lord Shiva approaching to pacify him and take him back, he prepared himself to move away, but when the Devas requested him to stay, he chose a place that was close by and not far. Thus, during this period the place where Goddess Parvati and Lord Shiva stayed, became known as Srisailam, and it is believed that on Amavasya Day, it is Lord Shiva who visits Lord Kartikeya and on Poornima, it is Goddess Parvati who visits Lord Kartikeya. Mahashivaratri is the main festival celebrated with grandeur in full spirits here.
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