Baba Baidyanath Dham

The temple of Baba Baidyanathdham is situated in a spacious courtyard bounded by stone walls. In the temple complex are 22 other temples. The Baidyanath temple faces east. The top of the original Shiva Lingam was slightly broken, keeping with the legend that it chipped away when Ravana tried to uproot it (Click here to know more about the legend). The Lingam has since been rebuilt. Near the temple is the Shivaganga Lake. The Chandrakoopa well, near the main entrance is said to have been built and consecrated with water from several pilgrimages by Ravana.
The Touch of ShivaAs soon as I touched the Lingam, unique feeling overpowered me and forced me to promise Baba Baidyanath to do his 'abhishekam' every day of my stay in Deoghar. Consequently, I ended up doing the 'abhishekam' every morning at 7 am. My daily Abhishekam continued for five weeks culminating on January 14, Makar Sankranti day.
Invoking the Lord: Shakti AbhishekamAlthough I had originally planned to do the Abhishekam of only the Jyotirlingam, I was convinced by the priests in the shrine to do the Abhishekam of Lord Ganesh and Ma Kali also on a daily basis. Instructions to worship Lord Ganesh (also my 'Ishta Devta' - household god) were in line with the Hindu tradition but why the Abhishekam of Ma Kali. That was because of the Tantrik links of the temple.
A Power Center: Shakti Peetha I was told by one of the old priests that Baidyanath is also considered as one of the 52 Shakti Peetha shrines of Sati. It is believed that the heart of Sati fell here, when her half burnt body being carried by Shiva at the end her sacrifice at Daksha's Yagna, was chopped to pieces by Vishnu's discus.
Tantrik LinksBaidyanathdham is a popular Tantrik seat for Sadhakas. Famous scholar and Tantric Gopinath Kaviraj has mentioned Baidyanathdaham as a seat of Tantric Sadhana. There is also one ever flaming Kund where tantrik rituals are being performed for Shakti Sadhana. Tanric Sadhana is the crux to worship Lord Shiva and Shakti.
My Unique Spiritual ExperienceEvery day after touching the Baidyanath Jyotirlingam I felt the kind of bliss and tranquility I had never felt before in my 64 year old life. The unique and blissful experience I had during this trip is beyond description. I felt truly blessed. It was so intoxicating that I could not wait to go to the temple every morning. Nothing seemed to bother me; bare feet, cold wave, the massive crowd, the mud in the courtyard, long lineup and the persistence of the Pandas.
Experiencing True BlissI have never been happier in my life. I kept asking myself: Is this the "true bliss" the scriptures and saints have talked about? Why else, I am not complaining about the unruly crowd, and lack of amenities that I used to during my previous visits. My relatives and friends tried their best to persuade me to visit them but I would not go. I got to have Baba's darshan every day. Mentally I was in a totally different world. Everything and anything I wished for in those five weeks appeared before me without any effort on my part.
As much I want to describe to you how I felt, I can't. All I can say "Experiencing is believing." I had heard in the past that Baba Baidyanath fulfils desires of devotees and hence the number of pilgrims is increasing exponentially every year, especially during the Shravan month. However, I must admit Baidyanath Jyotirlingam is a great power, gracing great effects.

The Ravana Legend
The Puranas speak of the Baidyanath Jyotirlingam. According to the Shiva Purana, it was in the Treta Yuga that the demon Ravana, king of Lanka, felt that his capital would not be perfect and free from enemies unless Lord Shiva stays there forever, he paid continuous meditation to Lord Shiva.
Finally, Shiva was pleased and permitted him to carry his lingam with him to Lanka. Lord Shiva advised him not to place or transfer this lingam to anyone. There should not be a break in his journey to Lanka. If he deposits the lingam anywhere on the earth, in the course of his journey, it would remain fixed at that place forever. Ravana was happy as he was taking his return journey to Lanka.
His fate willed otherwise. The gods took it ill. They never liked to see Lord Shiva as his protector.

They devised a plan for outwitting Ravana. They requested Varuna (the god of water) to enter into the belly of Ravana. So, on his way Ravana felt a severe urge to release water. He began looking for a man to whom he could temporarily entrust the lingam.
Lord Vishnu appeared before Ravana in the guise of a Brahmin. Unaware of the mystery, Ravana handed over the lingam to the Brahmin. Unfortunately, Ravana could not ease himself soon.
Meanwhile, the Brahmin placed the lingam at this place which was and which is now Baidyanathdham.
Ravana tried hard to remove the lingam from the spot where it had been placed. He could not turn out the lingam even an inch. This made him frustrated. He used violence but he only succeeded in pushing the lingam by thumb. Later on he felt guilty of his doings and begged for forgiveness.
He returned to Lanka but visited daily to worship the lingam. This continued forever. The place where Ravana descended on the earth is identified with the present Harilajori about four miles north of Baidyanathdham. The place where the lingam was kept is now Deoghar and the lingam itself is known to all as Baidyanath Jyotirlingam.

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