Ganga, Yamuna, Godavari, Cauvery, and Narmada are the 5 holy rivers of Bharat. Narmada is theholiest. She is known as Reva and Purvaganga. it’s said that a view of the river cleanses our sins. curiously, legend goes that once Ganga feels polluted thanks to her worshippers who take a dip, she comes within the style of a black cow to have a purifying bath within the Narmada!
In mythological times, Shiva the lord of destruction Sat meditating. His intense concentration created him break into a sweat. because it rolled down, it got collected in a tank. Eventually, this overflowed as the Narmada or Shankari, Shankar’s daughter. every pebble on the riverbed is meant to take the shape of a Shivalinga.
The Bhils are tribals who have lived on the banks of the Narmada for hundreds of years. The song they sing starts off with God’s sudden plan to make a world. The woodsman, Relu Kabadi is distributed to fetch wood from the jungle. Slowly and lovingly each creature of the forest, plant, tree, and different things we see in the World, were carved out of wood. Lastly, the Narmada and Tapti were created. They started the flow to fulfill the ocean Dudu Hamad. This was to be a wedding and so on this glorious journey, the villages, valleys and hills were created.
Maheshwar on the banks of the Narmada was King Sahasrarjun’s capital. One day, the King and his five hundred wives visited the river for a picnic. once the wives wished a vast play area, the King stopped the mighty river Narmada with his a thousand arms!
While they were all enjoying themselves, Ravana flew by in his Pushpak Vimana. Downstream, once he saw the dry riverbed, he thought it was an ideal place to wish to Lord Shiva. He created a shivalinga out of sand and began his prayers.
When Sahasrajuna’s wives were done and they stepped out of the riverbed, he let the waters flow. The voluminous river flowed down sweeping Ravana’s shivalinga on, messing up his prayers. Furious, Ravana tracked Sahasrajuna and challenged him. Armed to the hilt, the mighty Ravana was in for a large surprise. The mighty Sahasrarjuna with his a thousand arms stapled Ravana to the ground. Then he placed ten lamps on his heads and one on his hand.
After tying up Ravana, Sahasrarjuna dragged him home and tied him up to his son’s cradle pole. A humiliated Ravana stayed prisoner till his release was secured.
Even today, the Sahasrarjun temple at Maheshwar lights eleven lamps in memory of the event.
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