PUSHKAR

PUSHKAR

PUSHKAR PHOTO MADE BY KAILASH MANSAROVAR FOUNDATION, SWAMI BIKASH GIRI , www.sumeruparvat.com , www.naturalitem.com

Pushkar (Hindi: पुष्कर) is a town in the Ajmer district in the Indian state ofRajasthan. It is situated 14 km (8.7 mi) northwest of Ajmer at an average elevation of 510 m (1,670 ft) and is one of the five sacred dhams (pilgrimage site) for devout Hindus. According to Hindu theology, the pond at the Katas Raj temple Near Choa Saidan Shah in Chakwal District of Pakistan has a theological association with Shiva; it was formed by the tears of Lord Shiva which he is believed to have shed after the death of his wife, Sati. The story goes that when Sati died, 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. It is from this name that the word Katas is derived. It is often called "Tirth Raj" – the king of pilgrimage sites – and has in recent years become a popular destination for foreign tourists.
Pushkar is one of the oldest existing cities of India. It lies on the shore ofPushkar Lake. The date of its actual origin is not known, but legend associates Brahma with its creation.
Pushkar has many temples. Most of the temples are not very old because many temples were destroyed during Muslim conquests in the area.[1]Subsequently, the destroyed temples were rebuilt. The most famous among all is the Brahma Temple built during the 14th century CE. Very few temples to Lord Brahma exist anywhere in the world. Other temples of Brahmainclude 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. The Pushkar lake has 52 ghats where pilgrims descend to the lake to bathe in the sacred waters.
Pushkar is one of the oldest cities of India. The date of its actual founding is not known, but legend associates Brahma with its creation.[citation needed]
According to legend, Brahma was in search of a place for Mahayagna and he found this place suitable. After a long time, Brahma came to known that a demon, Vajranash, was killing people here so the Lord intoned a mantra on a lotus flower and killed the demon. During this process the parts of flower fell on three places which were later known as Jyaistha, Madhya and Kanistha Pushkar. After this Brahma performed a yagna to protect this place from demons. The consort of Brahma, Saraswati, were needed to offer Ahuti for the yagna but she was not there that time so Gayatri, a Gurjar girl, was married to brahma and performned yagna. This act made first wife of Brahma, Saraswati, angry and she cursed Brahma saying that he would be worshiped in Pushkar only.[3][4]
The Mahabharata says that while laying down a programme for Maharaja Yudhishthara’s travel, “Maharaja after entering the Jungles of Sind and crossing the small rivers on the way should bathe in Pushkara". And, as per Vaman Purana, Prahladaon his pilgrimage to holy places visited Pushkarayana.[citation needed]
A Gurjara Pratihara ruler of Mandore, Nahadarava, restored this tirtha in the seventh century. He got the place cleared and the lake restored by making an embankment on the side of the river Luni. He rebuilt old palaces and built twelve dharmashalas (resting places) and ghats on three sides of the lake.[citation needed]
According to Rajputana Gazetteer Pushkar was held by Chechi Gurjars until about 700 years ago.Later Some shrines were occupied by Kanphati Jogis.[5]
There are still priests from the Gurjar community in Pushkar temple, known as Bhopas.[6]
The sage Parasara is said to have been born here. His descendants, called Parasara Brahamanas, are found in Pushkar and the surrounding area. The famous temple of Jeenmata has been cared for by Parasara Brahmans for the last 1,000 years.
It is also the venue of the annual Pushkar Camel Fair.[citation needed] In 1901, the town was part of the Rajputana Agency had a population

Posted by SUMERU PARVAT on 2014-07-13 16:29:20

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