Murudeshwara is a small beach town near Bhatkal in Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka state.
Epics mention an interesting background of Murudeshwara Kshetra. Demon king Ravan was carrying Lord Shiva’s Atmalinga as a boon back to his kingdom of Swarnalanka. All the gods requested Lord Ganesha to intervene and prevent Ravan from taking the Atmalinga to Swarnalanka. They feared it would make Ravan invincible.
Soon it became Sunset time, Ravan was looking for somebody to hold Atmalinga so he could perform Sandhyavanadanam. He chanced upon Ganesha who had taken the form of a small boy. Ganesha agreed to hold the Atmalinga while Ravan would finish his Sandhyavandanam. However, Ganesha who put down Lord Shiva’s Atmalinga and vanished.
Angry Ravan tried to pull it out and Atmalinga broke into five parts and fell in five different places. A major portion fell at a place called Kandukagiri and this Shivalinga came to be called Mrideshwara Kshetra.
Region of Murudeshwara Kshetra shot into fame during the reign of Kadambas. It is believed that King Mayuravarma invited a few families of priests from Ujjain for performing religious activities as he learnt of their spiritual knowledge. These families settled down in Kadamba kingdom and spread the Vedic knowledge.
Murudeshwara Kshetra has continued its tradition and known for many Homas, Pujas and Pariharas performed here.
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