Considered to be one of the most revered and sacred temples in India. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, Somnath Mahadev Temple is one of the 12 famous Jyotirlinga temples and is one of the oldest pilgrimage sites in Gujarat. The word ‘Somnath’ means ‘Lord of the Moon Lord’, referring to Lord Shiva as he is known to wear the moon on his head.
Somnath Temple History
According to historians, the site of Somnath temple has been a place of pilgrimage since ancient times, as it is said to be the confluence of the three rivers Kapila, Hiran and the mythical Saraswati. According to the Puranas, the Somnath Mahadev Temple was built in gold by Somraj (Moon God). Ravana in silver, by Krishna in wood, and in stone by the Solanki Rajputs in the 11th century.
One of the 12 Jyotirlinga temples of Shiva, the Somnath temple is a beautiful piece of architecture. Known as Shashwata Tirtha, it is believed to be the place where Lord Krishna ended his life and then went to heavenly abode. Somnath is also mentioned in Srimad Bhagavata, Skandapurana, Shivapurana and Rigveda.
Somnath Temple attacks
According to history, the temple was destroyed about 17 times by Muslim rulers. Is. It was destroyed by Mahmud Ghazni in 1024 AD, Allauddin Khilji in 1299 AD, Mohammad Begda in 1451 AD and finally by Aurangzeb in 1702 AD. At one point, the temple was so rich that it housed 300 musicians, 500 dancers and There were also 300 servicemen.
After two days of fighting with Mahmud Ghaz it is said that 70,000 defending heroes were martyred. After looting the temple’s wealth, Mahmud destroyed it. So began a pattern of destruction and reconstruction that continued for centuries.
Somnath Mandir Reconstruction
Somnath temple has been built every time in the spirit of people’s reconstruction. Before independence, Prabhas Patan – present-day Veraval, was part of the Junagadh princely state, whose ruler decided to join Pakistan in 1947. After India refused to accept his decision, the state was made a part of India.
Deputy Prime Minister Sardar Patel came to Junagadh on 12 November 1947 to direct the stabilization of the state by the Indian Army and at the same time ordered the reconstruction of the Somnath temple. The modern temple was built with the determination of Sardar Patel who visited the ruins of Somnath temple in 1947.