The Shiva-linga as a symbol of the creative power of Lord Shiva is the most widely venerated cult object in Saivism. The Shiva4inga is usually made of stone and has three parts. The base is a square with a octagonal or oval platform or pedestal in which is embedded a cylindrical, round topped stone.
A Shiva-linga may be movable (achal) or immovable (achal). The movable linga may be kept in a shrine in one’s home and may be prepared temporarily with clay or dough and dispensed with after the worship. It may be made as a small pendant and worn on the body. The immovable lingas are those installed in temples and it is very common to have a linga in a temple without any image of Lord Shiva.
The lingas will always have an arrangement for water to drip on it continuously. During prayers it is bathed, bedecked with flowers and garlands, covered with oil and milk and offered rice and food. The linga may be shaped or natural elliptical stones picked up from riverbeds (bana-lingas).
The linga symbolizes the divine act of creation. ft represents the union of linga (phallic symbol) with the yoni (female organ) showing manifest nature, the universal energy.