Why is the idol of a tortoise kept in Shiva temples?

Krishna Paksha Pradosham in the month of Aippasi falls on October 17, 2017.


When we pray to Lord Shiva in temples, most of us may happen to see a tortoise sitting in front of the idol of Shiva and may wonder what is the tortoise doing there?


Why is the idol of a tortoise kept before Lord Shiva in temples?




A tortoise withdraws itself into its shell and stays there without coming out. Likewise, we should control our senses and stay away from the materialistic world.


The posture of a tortoise cocooning itself resembles Kurmasana. Lord Shiva is the first teacher of Yoga and so the idol of a tortoise befits a Shiva temple.


It also reminds us of the fact that Kurmavatar is one of the Dasavatars incarnated by Lord Vishnu. It indirectly means that both Shiva and Vishnu are one and the same.



So, when we worship Lord Shiva during Pradosham, let us not forget to pay respect to the idol of the tortoise sitting in front of the Lord. 









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