Dear all,
Do you know that the great Temple of Somnath is really the SEVENTH ONE to be built on the site? Why/ Read on.
varadarajan


History of Somnath Temple Gujarat:

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The Somnath Temple located in the Kathiarwar region of Gujarat, is one of the twelve Jyotiriings (golden lingas) symbols of the God Shiva. It is mentioned in the Rig Veda. Somnath mean “The Protector of Moon God”. It is known as ‘the Shrine Eternal’, as although the temple has been destroyed six times it has been rebuilt every single time.

The first temple of Somnath is said to have existed before the beginning of the Christian era. The second temple, built by the Maitraka kings of Vallabhi in Gujarat, replaced the first one on the same site around 649 AD. In 725 Junayad, the Arab governor of Sind sent his armies to destroy the second temple.

The Pratihara king Nagabhata II constructed the third temple in 815 AD, a large structure of red sandstone. Mahmud of Ghazni attacked this temple in 1025 AD, and looted it of gems and precious stones. He then massacred the worshippers and had the temple burnt. It was then that the famous Shiva lingam of the temple was entirely destroyed.

The temple and citadel were sacked, and most of its defenders massacred; Mahmud personally hammered the temple’s gilded lingam to pieces and the stone fragments were carted back to Ghazni, where they were incorporated into the steps of the city’s new Jamiah Masjid.

The fourth temple was built by the Paramara King Bhoj of Malwa and the Solanki king Bhima of Gujarat between 1026 AD and 1042 AD. The wooden structure was replaced by Kumarpal who built the temple of stone. The temple was razed in 1297 when the Sultanate of Delhi conquered Gujarat, and again in 1394 AD. The Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb destroyed the temple again in 1706 AD.

The present temple is the seventh temple built on the original site. It was completed on December 1, 1995 and the then President of India, Dr. Shankar Dayal Sharma dedicated it in the service of the nation. The present temple was built by the Shree Somnath Trust which looks after the entire complex of Shree Somnath and its environs.