A highly significant and popular religious attraction in the town of Pushkar, Apteshwar temple dedicates itself to Lord Shiva. Among the 400 temples that Pushkar bedecks within its boundaries, this worship site or one can say, a religious edifice that holds equal importance like that of the Brahma temple.
It is actually an underground shrine that was built in the 12th century. The temple is believed to be sunk inside the ground in the past. Thus, the statue of the presiding deity, Shiva retains its position in the form of a huge Linga with a snake made of copper encircled around it in the main hall, down the earth.
As per Hindu mythology, Apteshwar temple is built by the very favorite lord of Pushkar, Brahma. It happened so, that while performing the yagna at Pushkar Lake, Lord Brahma found the lord of destruction, Shiva attending the yagna in the form of a tantric mendicant with a skull in his hand. Brahma; unaware of him being Shiva, insulted the mendicant for his appearance. This angered him and he filled the entire yagna area with skulls.
When Brahma decided to inquire in by the way of meditation, his eyes opened with a reality check of the situation. He apologized Lord Shiva for his folly and requested him to attend the yagna, which Shiva did. In an attempt of appreciation, Brahma established a temple next to his, which today is known as the Apteshwar temple in Pushkar.
Significance and worship at Apteshwar temple
Apteshwar temple contributes a major amount of share in attracting pilgrims in huge numbers to Pushkar. Devotees place ‘Bel’ leaves on the sanctioned Lingam of Lord Shiva. Hindu mythology provides this belief that on doing so, one’s wishes get granted by the lord. Devotees would also be seen pouring milk, dahi, ghee and honey over Shiva Lingam. Owing to the belief of getting an ideal husband, unmarried girls particularly perform this ritual.
Visiting hours: 06:30 am to 08:30 pm