Wading through the crowded lanes and going through the now ever present security checks (mobiles, electronic gadgets, bags are not allowed in the temple, they can be deposited outside in the shops), I began my climb of the 30 odd stairs leading to the Temple courtyard.
[ Crowded lane leading to the Brahma Temple ]
The history of this sacred place is illustrated in the Holy Hindu Scripture Padma Purana…
Lord Brahma killed the demon Vajranabh by throwing on him His weapon ‘The Lotus Flower’. In the process of killing him, the petals of the Lotus fell at three places (in Pushkar itself) where beautiful lakes sprang up from the impact. Thus, Lord Brahma named this place as ‘Pushkar’ (‘Pushpa’ meaning flower had fallen from ‘Kar’meaning hand).
He then decided to perform a Yagna (fire-sacrifice) at the main Pushkar Lake. The completion of this Yagna required the presence of His wife, Goddess Savitri. As the auspicious time was running out and Goddess Savitri was nowhere to be seen, Lord Brahma married Gayatri and completed the Yagna with Her by the side. When Goddess Savitri arrived and saw Gayatri sitting in place of Her, she became so annoyed with Lord Brahma that she cursed Him and later went to reside on the nearby Ratangiri hills. It is believed that it’s the result of that curse that today, Lord Brahma is worshipped only at this place in the whole world.
The Lord Brahma Temple (Jagat Pita Brahma Mandir), close to the Pushkar lake and believed to be over 2500 years old, stands on a lofty plinth with marble steps leading up to a beautifully arched entrance gateway which is adorned with a distinct motif of a swan, the vehicle of Lord Brahma.
This gateway led me into the intricately carved pillared outdoor hall. The pillars are a medley of bright blue, green and golden colors complemented perfectly by the bright red shikhar (spire). The whole temple looked stunning, almost radiating light from the various different colors! In addition to this, the chessboard marble flooring done in black and white marbles, the small silver turtle sitting pretty on the floor facing the sanctum and the silver coins engraved with the names of devotees inlaid in the walls and the flooring of the temple…all of these added a unique distinctness to the temple!!
Finally, I moved towards the central sanctum sanctorum…Having read and heard so much about it in history, the only Brahma temple I have ever been to… here I was, standing in front of the four faced (chau murti) life size idol of Lord Brahma… eyes closed and head bent… my moment of spiritual bliss… Flanked by Goddess Gayatri to his left and Goddess Savitri to his right, He was draped in silk cloth and covered with fresh flowers and colorful garlands.
As I circumambulated the temple, I visited the other smaller temples of Lord Indra, Lord Kubera and Lord Shiva (which is located underground in a small cave) which are present inside the temple complex before resting for a few minutes in the courtyard.
I could not help but wonder that in a religious country like India where hundreds of thousands of shrines are found dedicated to various Gods and Goddesses and even Saints, Lord Brahma has remained conspicuous by His absence. Whatever the reason, I believe that it has only added to the value, beauty, charm and mystic of the place called Pushkar…