Cochin - Ernakulam - Shiva Temple
Temple is situated in the heart of Ernakulam City with "Shiva"
as deity. Also known as "Ernakulathappan", it was
built during Maharaja rule and is presently under Devaswom
This is one of the rarest Shiva temples where deity is facing
sea towards west. Arjuna, the pandava performs a severe penance
to propitiate Lord Shiva. Pleased with Arjuna’s devotion
Shiva accompanied with his consort Sri Parvathi set out from their
abode at Kailash to meet Arjuna.
Ages pass by. A boy named Devalan, victim of a curse and now a Nagarshi wanders about seeking a means to redeem himself from the curse. He comes across the Siva Linga made by Arjuna and takes it with him. After taking holy dips in the sacred rivers and praying at temples he arrives at "Rishinakulam" - the ancient name of present Ernakulam. Finding that the place is suitable for Shiva Prasada, the Nagarshi places the Shiva Lingam on the ground and offers poojas. However, the locals harass him and he decides to leave with the Shiva Linga. On attempting to lift the Shiva Linga he finds that it has become fixed to the ground and cannot be moved. It is this Shiva Linga we see as Kirathamoorthy on the northern side of the temple.
Devalan peforms his rites here and is redeemed from the curse. At his request the Shiva and Parvathy appear here and exist in the form of Linga. It is this "Gourisankara roopam" that is seen as "Swauambhoolingam" in the Sanctum Sanctorium. Later the temple was built and the diety installed.
The pooja methods were regularised as directed by the famous Villawamangalathu Swamiyar. The Linga Prathishta was made facing west. Devotees who dedicate themselves to the lord with utmost devotion are said to be relieved of their suffering leading to ultimate ‘Moksha’.