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Story of Origin of Shipra River in Ujjain

The famous Mahakaleshwar Temple in Ujjain is located on the banks of Shipra River. It is one of the holiest rivers in Hinduism. Story of origin of Shipra is associated with Vishnu and the Kapala form of Shiva. The story is found in the Skanda Purana.

Legend has it that Shiva once went to Vaikuntha, the abode of Vishnu, as a Bhikshatan (beggar) with his Kapala – human skull in the form of a begging bowl.

Kapala Shiva asked for food as Bhiksha (alms).

Vishnu did not offer any Bhiksha instead showed the finger next to thumb – asking to leave.

Shiva became angry and threw his trishul (trident) at the finger.

The finger got injured and the blood from it filled the Kapala.

The Kapala soon was filled with blood and it overflowed. The overflowing blood fell on earth and became the holy river Shipra.

Some legend suggests that the water flowing in Shipra River is the blood of Shiva.