Posts Tagged folk deities of Rajasthan

Jeen Mata – Folk Deity in Sikar

Jeen Mata, also known as Jayanti Mata, occupies an important place amongst folk deities of Rajasthan. Jeen Mata is incarnation of Goddess Durga.

The folk deity is famous in Sikar district of Rajasthan and is worshiped mainly by Chauhan Rajputs. She is kuldevi of Chauhan Rajputs.

History

The history behind the belief in Jeen Mata is very interesting. Centuries ago the king Ghanga of village Ghoghu (in Churu district) loved and married with an Apsara on the condition that he would not visit her palace without prior information to her. Later they were blessed with son Harsha and daughter Jeen. One day the king visited Apsara’s palace without permission. Due to his visit, Apsara left the king, taking her son and daughter with her.

How Jeen became Deity

Harsha was very caring for his sister and fulfilled all desires of her. Harsha got married due to  her sister’s desire. Some time later, Harsha’s wife started creating misunderstanding between brother and sister. Jeen got upset with this and went in forest to live in severe austerity and penance.

The brother soon realized his mistake and visited Jeen, but he could not convince her to change her mind. So he decided to practice the same austerity and penance and undertook the devotion on a different mountain. The two children practiced extreme asceticism atop separate hills in thick forests. With time Jeen gained status of `Durga’ as her Avatar and Harsh achieved the incarnation of `Bhairon’- helper of `Shiva’. Some years later, a Chauhan ruler built a temple at that place. The main temple has a very high Shikhar (Pinnacle) in the midst.

Jeen Mata’s Temple

An ancient temple dedicated to Jeen Mata is 30 km away from Sikar. Lacs of devotees congregate here every year in the month of Chaitra and Ashwin at the time of Navratra fairs. In the temple there is a statue of Jeen Mata with eight arms.

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Nandni Mata – Avtar of Goddess Durga

Nandni, meaning daughter, is another name of Goddess Durga. The goddess is worshiped by Hindus mostly in Navratri (a Hindu festival when all the forms of Goddess Durga are worshiped).

In vagadi language, Nandni mata is also called Nandore Ma.

History

In dwapad era, king Kanns heard a sound from the sky that he will be killed by Yashoda’s sibling. So he sent Yashoda and her husband in jail and one by one killed all their daughters  in jail. It is said that Goddess Nandni was one of those daughters of Yashoda which were killed by kanns in dwapad era.

Nandini mata Temple

Nandni mata has been regarded as Pavagh Devi of Gujarat in Vagad. The main temple of Goddess Nandini is situated on the top of the hills near barodiya village which is a part of Vagad. The famous folk dance garba is devoted to Goddess Nandni.

Another temple which is located in 15 km from Banswara district of Rajasthan is also very famous. Nandni Mata appears in several Vedic hymns and is also described in the eleventh chapter of Durga Saptmi book.

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Eloji – Village God and Folk Deity in Western Rajasthan

Eloji is mainly popular and worshiped in western Rajasthan. In every village you can find statues of Eloji. It is portrayed as a strong man with moustaches, sitting comfortably with a pride on his face.

Eloji is also famous as Gram-Devta (the God of village).

Why he is worshiped

In rural India especially in western Rajasthan the importance of sex in happy married life, procreation and fun is embodied in worship of local deity – Eloji. The male worships Eloji for sexual powers while the female worships him to get a male child.

Holi Festival

On the occasion of  festival of colors, Holi, people in western Rajasthan sing many songs on chung (a folk music instrument like drum) in praise of sexual powers of Eloji. These folk songs are called PHAGS. During the festival all women surely visit Eloji’s temple.

In many villages when a couple get married, they pay their homage to Eloji. The bride hugs Eloji’s statue first, because it is considered that Eloji has first right on every woman.

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Baba Ramdevji – Most Popular Folk Deity of Rajasthan

Baba Ramdevji does not need any introduction. He is one of the most popular folk deity of Rajasthan and is know all over India. Thousands of people come to worship him in Runecha fair.

Also known as Ramapeer, Baba Ramdevji is considered to be an incarnation of Lord Krishna by Hindus. Muslims venerate him as Ram Shah Pir.

He was born in the houses of Ajmalji in the Tomar Rajput family.

History behind his birth

The king of Pokran, king Ajmal was follower of Lord Vishnu. He was very sad as he was childless. Once he was prayring in the temple. The priest considered him mad and told him to go to dwarika (which was swallowed by the sea) to meet lord Vishnu. Without any fear the king Ajmal dived into the sea to meet lord Krishna. Pleased at the king’s dedication and faith, the Lord granted him a boon. The king asked for Lord Krishna to be born as his son. Krishna was thus born as Baba Rajdevji.

Miracles in Childhood

It is said that in childhood Baba Ramdevji asked his mother to allow him for horse riding. But his mother didn’t allow him for riding and gave him a horse which was made of cloth. When Baba Ramdev rode the horse , it started flying in the air. Seeing this all got surprised. Till now the people who come to worship him in Runecha fair, gift the horses made of cloth in Baba Ramdev temple.

Runecha Fair

Baba Ramdev helped the down-trodden by granting them their wishes. He is also believed to have killed a demon called Bhairav.

There are many temples of Baba Ramdevji but the majestic Shri Ramdev temple is at Ramdevra, Runicha, 13 kms from Pokran in Jaisalmer district. It houses the shrine of Ramdev. It was the place where Baba Ramdevji took samadhi on Bhadrapada Shukla Ekadashi in V.S. 1442 at the age of 33 years. Dalibai, his ardent follower (Meghwal), was also buried near his grave.

Fairs are held twice a year. People flock to the temple and chant the glory of Ramsa Pir, so that their prayers may be answered. Many cultural events are also organized during this fair. Wooden toy horses covered with cloth are among the most popular offerings at the temple.

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Bhuwal Mata – Kuldevi of Chajjer clan

Bhuwal Mata, a lok deity of Rajasthan, is mainly worshiped by Jains. She is considered as the Kuldevi of Chajjer clan of Jains.

History

In 1964, Shushila Devi (one of saint of Chajjer clan) was not recovering from illness. When Dr. B.L Chajjer asked the reason for that, she told that Bhuwal Mata will come and everything will be well in Chajjer clan. Saint Shushila Devi remained bare foot for 15 months and worshiped Bhuwal Mata.

In 1969 Bhuwal Mata’s priest told Shushila Devi to reconstruct the temple of Bhuwal Mata’s temple. The task was completed by help of 1250 house members from Chajjer clan within 24 hrs. The temple was at Khedgarh which is now known as Tilwara. It is located at 15 km from Balotra, an important city in the district Barmer of Rajasthan.

It is said that the footprints of Bhuwal Mata are still worshiped at Khed.

Incident during Construction of Temple

The same temple was reconstructed in Birhami village of Rajasthan near Jodhpur. Several attempts were made to construct the temple but due to some unknown presence partly constructed temple walls used to fall the same night. No one could answer the reason for falling walls.

Finally Sushila Ben Chajjer, a staunch follower and committed devotee of Bhuwal Mata, suggested that the temple should be constructed in single day without stoppage of work. Accordingly on 07.04.1976 the construction was started and completed on 08.04.1976.

Bhuwal Mata’s fair

A huge fair is held every year during Navrati in which Jains, especially Chajjer, participate from all over India and abroad. The fair is held at Birhami or Birami village of Rajasthan near Jodhpur. It is about 30 km south-east of Jodhpur.

How to worship Bhuwal Mata

The worship of Bhuwal Mata can be done in a very simple way. One must have taken bath before entering into temple and should also wear clean clothes. One may offer dry coconut in hawan or yajna.

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