Baidyanath Temple at Deoghar is one among the twelve Shiva jyotirlinga (places of workshop to Lord Shiva) situated in India. Baidyanath Temple (alias Vaidyanath Temple), at Deoghar is also one among the 51 Shakti Peethas (place of worship to the goddess Shakti or Sati) in India. Deoghar Baidyanath Temple is also called ‘Kamnalingam Temple’.
Deoghar Town is situated in the Deoghar District, in Jharkhand state, India. ‘Deoghar’ means ‘abode’ of God(esses). Deoghar is also known by names like “Baidyanath Dham” and “Baba Dham”. Baidnath Temple consists of the main temple and 21 other other temples in the complex.
According to Hinduism, Ravana the demon king, work-shipped Lord Shiva at the current site of the temple to get the boons that Ravana later used to wreak havoc in the world. Ravana offered his ten heads one after other, to Lord Shiva, as a sacrifice. Lord Shiva was pleased with Ravana’a sacrifice and and cured injured Ravana. As Lord Shiva acted as a doctor, this temple got the name Vaidhya (doctor).
‘Shivganga‘, which is believed to be made by Ravana (the main antagonist, meaning one who opposes, in the great Hindu epic, “Ramayana”) by striking the earth with his fist, on his way to Lanka (Sri Lanka), carrying the ‘Shaia lingam’ in his hand. This is at around a quarter kilo meter from the Vaidyanath Temple and is a tourist place near to the temple. Shivganga is also called “Deoghar talab”.
“Ravana Jori” or “Harila Jori” is a river originating at a distance of 8 kilo meters from the Baidyanath temple at Deoghar. This is the place where ‘Ravana’ is believed to have handed over the ‘Shia Lingam’ to Lord Vishu (MahaVishnu), who was disguised as a ‘Brahmin’. This is one among the nearby tourist places.
‘Nandan Pahar” is a nearby small hill on the eastern side of Deoghar used as a hangout center for the tourists with restaurants, guest houses, and a mirror house. “Basukinath Shiva Temple” at a distance of 45 kilo meters from Deoghar is another major pilgrimage center for the Deoghar Vaidyanath Temple pilgrims. It is believed that one must visit the ‘Basukinath Shiva Temple’ also, without which the pilgrimage is considered incomplete.
“Satsanga Ashram“, is a near by Ashram for the devotees of ‘ Sree Sree Thakur Anukulchandra’, established in the middle of 19th century. ‘Tapovana‘, is a nearby hill at around 10 kilo meter distance from Deoghar, with many caves and a Shiva temple called “Taponath Mahadeva“. ‘Shiva lingam’ is found in one of the caves here in ‘Tapovana’. It is believed that ‘Sage Valmiki‘, who is the author of the great Hindu epic ‘Ramanaya‘, attained ‘Siddi’ (success through penance) here in ‘Tapovana’.
Naulakha Temple is another nearby famous temple which attracts a lot of tourists. Naulakha Mandir alias Naulakha Temple is a lookalike of the famous temple of Ramakrishna in Belur, Karnataka state, India.
How Do I Go to Vaidyanath Temple or Baidyanath Temple at Deoghar?
Deoghar city is at a distance of around 270 to 275 kilometers from Ranchi, the state capital. From Ranchi, it takes around 5 hours by road via NH 23 and NH 114 A, which covers a distance of around 275 kilometers. If you are travelling via Ranchi – Purulia Road and NH114A, it takes almost the same time and distance.
If you are traveling by road from Kolkotta, you have to take the route via Jamtara. Deoghar is at a distance of around 370 kilometers from Kolkotta. Patna is at around 280 kilometers from Baidyanath or Babadham.
Deoghar city, the 5th largest city in Jharkhand state, is located at 7 kilo meter distance from ‘Jasidih junction’ railway station (station code ‘JSME’). There are several daily trains linking Deoghar city with the ‘Jasidih Junction’. Deoghar City has two railway stations,; Baidyanathdham and Deoghar. There are several trains from Deoghar City to other Indian cities like Ranchi, Varanasi, Asansol, etc.