Bhuteshwara Mahadeva temple at Mathura is one of the most celebrated shrines of Lord Shiva in the whole of Vraja Mandala. Bhuteshwara Mahadeva, or the God of gods and the Lord of ghosts and spirits, is Lord Shiva in the mood of a devotee of Lord Krishna.
Lord Shiva is the greatest among all Vaishnavas, indeed He is non-different from Lord Vishnu. Nityananda Caritamrita of Srila Vrindavana Dasa Thakura confirms it by saying that one who tries to hold Shiva and Vishnu different he will not progress in devotional service.
Srimad Bhagwatam also says that Shambhu, or Shiva, is the greatest among all the devotees of Lord Krishna, or Vishnu. So Lord Shiva’s position is most exalted.
Lord Shiva acts as the guardian of Vraja Mandala, the land where Lord Krishna enacted his pastimes on earth 5000 years ago. He protects the area on four directions as four siva lingas, or deities – Bhuteshwara Mahadeva at Mathura in south, Gopishwara Mahadeva at Vrindavana in east, Chakleshwara Mahadeva at Govardhana in west and Nandishwara Mahadeva at Nandagrama in north.
These four deities are the most powerful deities of Shiva on earth. The other siva lingas are only Their expansions. These four guardians of Vraja are known as Dig Palas.
Lord Shiva do not let atheists, and the people having an offensive attitude towards Krishna and His devotees, to come in Vraja.
Bhuteshwara Mahadeva is also among the 4 guardians of Kshetra Palas, or the guardians of holy city of Mathura, where Lord Krishna appeared on earth. The other Kshetra Palas are Rangeshwara Mahadeva, Pippaleshwara Mahadeva and Gokarneshwara Mahadeva.
Bhuteshwara Mahadeva punishes the one who commits offense against Lord Krishna and His devotees, by sending ghost to trouble that person and thus drives that person out of Mathura and Vraja Mandala.
Bhuteshwara Mahadeva temple is located in the main part of the city of Mathura. Any auto can take you to the temple. It is only a little distance from Sri Krishna Janmabhoomi temple – Krishna’s appearance place.
In the temple you may see the siva linga of Bhuteshwara Mahadeva. The smaller one is original while other one was installed by some devotees recently. The smaller one is installed by king Vajranabha, the great grandson of Lord Krishna.
There is a flight of stairs going down on your right as you face to siva lingas. Down these stairs shakti peetha, or the temple of Durga. Durga Devi is the eternal consort of Lord Shiva. She is the embodiment of Lord Krishna’s illusory power in the material universe. She controls the living entities in this world. She deflects the materialistic people to more materialism while She leads the devotees to Krishna.
How to reach Mathura – Mathura is a city of 500,000 and it is well connected to Delhi (140 km), Agra (50 km), Vrindavana (8 km) and other major cities in India. Mathura can be reached through National Highway – 2. Mathura and Vrindavana both provide good accomodation and other facilities.
Other Points of Interest – In Mathura other important temples are Krishna’s appearance place (Janmabhoomi temple), Dwarkadhisha temple, Vishrama Ghata and kshetra pala temples.
In Vrindavana, about 10 km away, you may see ISKCON Krishna Balarama temple, Radha Damodara temple, Madana Mohana temple, Govindaji temple and Gopishwara Mahadeva temple.
The towns of Nandagrama, Mahavana (Gokula), Govaradhana, Varsana and Kamyavana (Kaman) are also worth visit.
Jaya Bhuteshwara Mahadeva!
Jaya Mahabhagvata Shiva!