October 9, 2013

Quote of the Post: "Witness the holy pilgrim place, its colour, lake, temples, ghats and magical fairs, hosted at time to time." - Quote about "Tirth Raj Pushkar, Ajmer" by Sachin Kumar Gupta

The holy town Pushkar is situated in Ajmer district in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Pushkar is one of the oldest existing cities of India. Pushkar has become a place of Hindu pilgrimage because of its holy Pushkar lakePushkar in Sanskrit means blue lotus flower. Hindus believe that the gods released a swan with a lotus in its beak and let it fall on earth where Brahma would perform a grand yagna. The place where the lotus fell was called Pushkar. It is derived from word 'Pushpa' means flower and 'Kar' means hand. It is often called "Tirth Raj" – the king of pilgrimage sites – and has in recent years become a popular destination for foreign tourists as well.


It is 14 km away from Ajmer and 140 km from Jaipur. It is one of the five sacred dhams (pilgrimage site) for devout Hindus. Most of the people visiting Jaipur, take one day trip to Ajmer and Pushkar, so did we. It was quite a smooth drive from Jaipur via KishangarhIt was a bit cloudy when we reached Pushkar. Once we reach there, our guide explained two stories about this place:

First, According to Hindu theology, it was formed by the tears of Lord Shiva which is believed to have shed after the death of his wife, Sati. The story goes that when Sati died, Lord Shiva cried so much and for so long, that his tears created two holy ponds – one at Pushkara in Ajmer in India and the other at Ketaksha, which literally means raining eyes, in Sanskrit. 

Second, The story goes that Brahma wanted to perform the yagna at the most auspicious time but his consort Savitri whose presence at the yagna was vital for its performance kept him waiting. Irritated by this Brahma married Gayatri, a milkmaid. Savitri on seeing someone else in her place was infuriated and cursed Brahma that he would be forgotten by people on earth and never worshiped. She relented on pleas from other gods that he could only be worshipped in Pushkar; hence there are very rare Brahma temples elsewhere in the world. 


Based on this story, you can see many framed photos of lord Brahma, being sold at this place. The most famous among all 1000+ temples, is the Brahma Temple, built during the 14th century CE. Very few temples to Lord Brahma exist anywhere in the world. 
As per wiki info: Other temples of Brahma include Bithoor in Uttar Pradesh, India; Khedbrahma in Gujarat, India; village Asotra near Balotra city of Barmer district in Rajasthan; Uttamar Kovil (one of the Divya Desams) near Srirangam, Tamil Nadu; Mother Temple of Besakih in Bali, Indonesia; and Prambanan in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. 


Lakes and Ghats: It is famous for its ghats at Pushkar Sarovar (Pushkar Lake). One must take a dip in this holy lake. Legend has it, that this lake was dedicated to Lord Brahma, the creator of the universe when a lotus dropped from his hand into the vale and a lake emerged in that place. Pushkar Lake which is considered sacred, has 52 ghats where pilgrims descend to the lake to bathe in the sacred waters. There we saw many pigeons flying from one temple to another temple, and relaxing in the shadow and some enjoying the 'food' offered to them. 
Important Note: 
  • Photography of bathing pilgrims in holy lake is strictly prohibited.
  • Footwear has to be removed 30 feet away from bathing Ghats of the holy lake, no footwear at the stairs.
  • Take care of your camera, valuables and goods.
*Places to see in Pushkar: Pushkar has many temples. Most of the temples are very old and some of them were rebuilt. 
Jagat Pitta Shri Brahma Temple: The most important temple in Pushkar is the Temple of Lord Brahma, one of the holy trinity of Hinduism. The temple enshrines a life-size idol of Lord Brahma.
Savitri Temple: This temple that is located at the top of the Ratnagiri hill, which is dedicated to Savitri, the wife of Lord Brahma. The temple houses a statue of Goddess Savitri. It takes 1 hr 30 mins to walk from Brahma Temple. It gives a panoramic view of the lake and surrounding sand dunes.
Varaha Temple or Shri Nrisingh Temple: This temple is to God Vishnu. It is one of the most visited temples in Pushkar city. It is said that Lord Vishnu gave a visit to this area to kill an atrocious demon Hirnayaksha.
Temple of Rangji (New and Old) or Shri Vaikunthnathji
Gurudwara Singh Sabha 
Mandir Shri Chaar Bhuja Ji: From the front, you can see peepal's leaves. 
Apteshwar Mahadev temple
The Sri Sawai Bhoj Temple
Man Mahal


Fairs and Festivals in Pushkar:
  • Pushkar Camel Fair (November)
  • Nagaur Fair
  • Tejaji fair
  • Blue Lotus Festival (February)
Enjoy the wonderful camel ride tour: Camel ride is very famous here, People come here during festive season to roam around the country side.
A visit to Ajmer and Pushkar town from Jaipur by an Indica or Ambassador taxi would cost about Rs 2,500. Expect rates to go up considerably in the high season. In the market area, you can see enjoy many colorful shops and purchase souvenirs. Ajmer is the nearest tourist attraction that lies outside the city boundaries of Pushkar.

1 comments:

Rakesh Shukla said...

Jai Brahma. Jai Pushkar.

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