It is quite interesting to know that idols or shivlings appear on its own in several places. The temples that contain such structures are known as Swayambhu temples. This article takes you to some of the better and lesser known swayambhu temples in India.
Swayambhu Ganpati Temple, Ganpatipule
The idol of Lord Ganesha in the Swayambhu Ganpati temple in Ganpatipule is said to have emerged by its own from white sand. This swayambhu temple is located by the beach of Ganpatipule. The place itself is named after the idol (Pule means white sand).
Sri Abathsahayeswarar Temple, Alangudi
Arulmigu Abathsahayeswarar Temple in Alangudi is one of the swayambhu Hindu temples in India and is popular for its self-manifested shivling. Abathsahayeswarar translates to "the one who protects from danger". It is believed that Goddess Parvati did penance here and got married to Lord Shiva.
Amarnath Cave, Amarnath
The shivling in Amarnath Cave that formed by ice is believed to be swayambhu. Tourist flock to the cave from around the world. Tales has it that Goddess Parvati wanted to know about the secrets of immortality. Lord Shiva took his consort Parvati to these caves to reveal to her about the secrets of life so that they would be heard by none.
Albela Hanuman Mandir, Mumbai
Located in Wadala in Mumbai, the Albela Hanuman Mandir is one of the rare swayambhu Hindu temples with a Hanuman idol. There is an interesting story behind the temple. This idol was found by a King from a region nearby which was then a jungle. The King decided to carry the idol with him. However, after a point the idol was not able to move from its place and the King realised that it is the wish of Lord Hanuman to stay there. He then constructed a temple at that spot dedicated to Lord Hanuman.
Kanaka Durga Temple, Vijayawada
This temple is dedicated to Goddess Kanaka Durga, the presiding deity of the city of Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh. It is mentioned in the Vedas that the idol of the temple is 'swayambhu' or self-manifested and thus very powerful.
How these idols and structures emerge from the earth is still a mystery. There are those who strongly believe that these Hindu temples are a divine miracle whereas non-believers are also not less. Whether you believe in these powers or not, these temples are surely worth a visit.