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Mahatobhaara Shree Mahalingeshwara Temple

It is the main temple in Puttur, around 50 km from Mangalore, Karnataka. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva. And is, after Kashi Vishwanath Temple, the only temple to have a cremation ground opposite it. This is the Mahatobhaara Shree Mahalingeshwara Temple.
The sun setting over Mahalingeshwara Temple, and Puttur.

According to popular legend, three wise old men, ardent devotees of Shiva, were traveling through Southern India, carrying a Shivling from Kshetra of Kashi.

View of the temple ground.

While they were in Puttur, under the patronage of the King of Banga, they set aside the Shivling on the ground to offer their prayers. Once done with their prayers, they tried to lift the Shivling, which is when they realized they had an issue at hand. They just couldn’t lift it.

The temple bull going on its daily evening walk.

They asked for the king’s help, who gladly obliged, and sent his soldiers along with his elephant to do the needful. Strangely, with every effort to lift the Linga, it only grew in size, until it was so much that the poor elephant fell dead in the temple pond close by, with its body parts strewn in different directions.

The gold plated pole standing tall in front of the main temple complex.

This is why, the locals still maintain that the pond water, now turned green, is supposedly poisonous to elephants.

The pond behind the temple complex, with its green waters.

How the fishes and turtles survive is another story.

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