Gauri Shankar Temple

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Dedicated toLord Shiva
LocationOld Delhi
Constructed ByApa Ganga Dhar (As per the legend)

 

Gauri Shankar Temple is a Hindu temple situated in the Old Delhi. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and houses an approximately 800-year old brown lingam, made up of phallus stone. The Lingam is encircled by snakes and represents a “cosmic pillar, the center of universe, the life itself”. There are bejeweled statues of Gauri (Goddess Parvati) and Shankar (Lord Shiva), standing beneath the silver canopy, inside the main shrine. Along with these idols, are the idols of their sons, Ganesh (the elephant headed god) and Kartik, (the god of war).
The Gaurishankar Mandir of Delhi counts amongst the most revered temples of Shaivism (a sect of Hinduism that worships Lord Shiva) in India. A flight of marble steps, adorned with pillars carved with chains and bells, lead into the temple courtyard. The offerings made in the Delhi Gauri Shankar Temple include bilva (wood apple), chandan (sandal wood paste), marigolds, red powder, rice and cotton threads. One of the highlights of the temple is a marble chair of Bhagat Swaroup Bramachari. He was a Hindu saint who spent more than 50 years in the temple.Many legends are associated with the temple. One of them is that Apa Ganga Dhar, a Maratha Hindu Soldier was a staunch devotee of Lord Shiva. One day, he got badly injured in a battle, with the survival chances being quite dim. He prayed to the Lord and made a pledge that if he survives, he will build a temple dedicated to the Lord.

 

To everyone’s amazement, he survives and thereafter, built the temple that is today known as the Gauri Shankar Temple. Another legend is that one-day, Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb ordered that the temple bells would not be rung. From that day onwards to the next three days, he kept hearing the ringing of the bells in his ears. Finally, he relented and took back his orders.

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