|Brahma temple Pushkar, Rajasthan, trip advisor|
Jagatpita Brahma Mandir at Pushkar, Rajasthan state close to the sacred Pushkar Lake is said to be the most important and famous temple among few of them. God Brahma has four heads, each facing the four cardinal directions. Originally he had five heads but Shiva removed one of his heads. The four arms hold the akshamala (rosary), the pustaka (book), the kurka (kusha grass) and the kamandalu (water pot). His mount is Hamsa. They represent time, the causal waters from which the universe emerged, knowledge and the system of sacrifices to be adopted for sustenance of various life-forms in the universe. Along with his image one will find the images of Gayatri, Savatri alias Sarasvati, his consort. On the temple walls are found Vishnu, life-size Dwarapalas (sentinels) and a gilded Garuda (eagle-man, mount of Vishnu).
As for temple worship and puja protocols, a unique tradition is being followed here. In the Garbagriha - sanctum only priests who have taken to Sanyasam (asceticism) are allowed to conduct pujas. Married priests are not allowed inside the sanctum. The priests belonging to Parashar gothra have been traditionally taking care of the various aspects of the temple.
This temple along with the Pushkar lake has the unique distinction of being identified by International Business Times as one of the ten most religious places in the world and one of the five sacred pilgrimage places for the Hindus in India. It is only one of its kind in the whole world.
The Brahma temple dating back to the 14th century, is made of marble and stone slabs. One will find the image of Brahma and his consort Gayatri in the Garbagraha. The idol was installed as per Agama Sastras by Adi Sankara (720 AD) of Kaladi, Kerala.
|Adi Shankara with Disciples, by Raja Ravi Varma (1904),wikipedia|
Above image: Adi Shankaracharya an early 8th century Indian philosopher and theologian consolidated the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta. and established four Sankara Mutts across India. He was instrumental in unifying and establishing the main concepts in Hinduism. His works in Sanskrit discuss the unity of the ātman and Nirguna Brahman "brahman without attributes". His elaborate commentaries on the Vedic canon (Brahma Sutras, Principal Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita) lend support to his thesis. He also goes by the name of Adi Shankaracharya, Shankara Bhagavatpada, sometimes spelled as Sankaracharya, (Adi) Śaṅkarācārya, Born at Kaladi near Kochin, Kerala he died at a pretty young age in 820 CE; he was just 32 years old)...............................
Karthik pornima - - full Moon (October – November) is a major festival here and is being attended by a large number of pilgrims. During this time the world famous Camel fair is held annually. Before entering the temple, pilgrims normally take a bath in the sacred lake of Pushkar. All Hindus worship Lord Brahma with the same zeal as they have while worshiping Vishnu and Shiva. The temple is accessed through a flight of steps at the entrance gate which has an archway. On the top are the pillared canopies which make the temple very graceful. The temple has the style of medieval times .
|Pushkar lake and brahma temple. Flywidus|
The legend has it this temple is said to have been built by sage Viswamitra. As for its location, it is believed, that Brahma himself chose it. The great Hindu philosopher Adi Sankara of Kalady (Kerala; 8th century) renovated this temple. Maharajah Jawat Raj of Ratlam made additions and repairs to the medieval temple without changing the original design.
|Brahma temple, Pushkar, Rajasthan. Rajasthan|
Millions of people come and also take a bath in the holy Pushkar lake. Various rites and rituals are performed in this temple at that time. This is a yearly phenomenon. There are innumerable Hindu temples around Pushkar and a visit to this venerated place and the Pushkar lake will not disappoint you. Visiting this place will be a new experience blended with Bhakti and social intercourse.