Kashi is One of the seven cities, considered by the Hindu's as Mokshadayikas or the cities leading to salvation. Varanasi has a temple of almost all the major Hindu Gods and Goddesses. As the name suggests the supreme brilliance shines here and thus it is obviously chosen as his abode by Lord Shiva to emanate in his blazing linga form. Here he is known as Vishwanatha, the Lord of Universe.This city is also known as Varanasi as it is located between the two rivers Varana and Asi. The importance of this place lies in the fact that it encompasses one of the twelve Jyotirlingas in its folds. The city and the concept of self-emanated linga is almost inseparable which is reflected in the numerous Shiva lingas installed at almost every ghat of Varanasi as the replica of Vishwanatha. And yet the original place where the Vishwanatha linga was is shrouded in misery. There is also a controversy regarding the self-emanated linga. According to one tradition a linga called Avimukteshvara, today situated in the courtyard of the Vishwanatha temple is the original self- emanated linga.
Today's Vishwanatha temple was built in the eighteenth century by Queen Ahalyabai Holkar of Indore. The shikhara rising over the Vishwanatha was plated with gold by King Ranjit Singh of Lahore in 1839. Because of this golden spire the tourists also call the temple as golden temple of Varanasi.