Ravana was a devotee of Shiva. Pleased with his
worship Shiva handed over his atmalinga to Ravana, but at the same time,
he warned him that the linga would lose its power if kept on the ground.
When the gods heard this they begged Shiva to take it back. But Shiva
said that he could not do so. The gods decided to ask Ganesha to help.
Changing himself into a cowherd, he appeared before Ravana, who was
then pondering how to take a bath with the linga in hand. He asked the boy
to hold it for a while. The moment Ravana turned his back, Ganesha
dropped the linga saying it was too heavy.
Furious, Ravana tried to lift it but failed.