Ashta Vinayak is the eight swayambhu (self made or naturally formed) forms of Lord Ganesh on earth. The Ashta Vinayak temples are located in eight places in
. The idol of Lord Ganesh in these temples is formed on a single large stone. The form of Vinayaka can be clearly recognized on the stone. It is believed that Lord Ganesha appeared at these eight places. Maharashtra, India
Ashta Vinayak or the eight
Swayambhu Temples dedicated to Lord Ganesh in Maharashtra are:
Moreshwar Temple: Located along the banks of in Morgaon village in Pune District, Lord Ganesh is known as Mayureshwar or Moreshwar. Ganesha is here depicted as riding a peacock. It is believed that Lord Ganesha appeared in this form to destroy a demon named Sindhu. Morgaon village is located in Baramati Taluk and is around 55 km southeast of Pune city. Karha River
Vighneshwar or Vighnahara or
Vighneshwara Temple: Located on the banks of the Kukdeshwar River in Ojhar or Ozhar in Pune District, represents the form of Ganesha taken to destroy demon Vighnasura. This beautiful temple is located on Pune – Vighneshwar Temple Nasik Highway (NH 50) near Junnar and is around 80 km north east of Pune city.
Girijatmaja or Girijatmak or
Girijatmaj Temple: Located in Lekhan Hills or Lenaya Parvat or Lenyadri, it is believed that Girija (Goddess Parvati) performed intense austerities for 12 years at the present to beget Ganesha as her son. One has to climb 283 steps to reach this shrine, which is surrounded by beautiful hills. The Ganesh temple is part of a Girijatmaj Lenyadri Temple temple. It is located around 150 km north-east of Pune city on the Buddhist Cave Pune-Nasik Highway
Varad Vinayak or
Mahadcha Shri Varadavinayak Temple: Located in Mahad in Raigarh District, Lord Ganesha is believed to have given darshan to Gruthsmadh here who performed penance to get rid of sins. He was granted what he wished and therefore the Varad Vinayak here is known as one who fulfills wishes. A lamp named Nandadeep at the temple is burning constantly since 1892. Mahad is around 25 km southwest of Karjat.