A very memorable thing.
Since temples here do no play holi right inside the premises (unlike temples of some other cities such as Jodhpur), the entire town gathers to play around Varaah ghat, the town square. The celebrations start from the lighting of the bonfire/pyre again at Varaah ghat and continue non-stop all day until around 3pm. That is a lot of play!
All stores and restaurants bolt up early in the day, like from 9am to 3pm, so plan your breakfast/lunch in advance. But seeing it all shut down made me anticipate the fun even more!
The only strange part was everyone dancing to reverberating trance music on Holi. Uhhh, you don't really get to see that everyday, but that's what made it more unique.
Funny Thing: the racy priests who don't let white people in the temple stood on the ledge of the temples with long faces listening to the distant clear drum beats that now they could not be a part of. Karma!?
The breakdown of the play is:
If you're white, almost everyone wants to color you.
If you're white female, everyone* wants to color you. (*Indian men.)
The party keeps getting harder and tighter as the hours pass on, ironically, more so after the stroke of 12. So if you want just a slightly milder affair, join the fun before noon. But in reality, it's all a very celebratory, worries aside, all-together-now party. Everyone does behave. It is great light fun! Guys playfully tear each other's shirts off and dance their flips flops away. No distinctions of creed, color, or wealth, everyone joins in! It is Holi in the true spirit.
Don't miss it. Go crazy. Have a blast. It will be a highlight of your entire trip.
According to the legend, Pushkar means a pond created by flower, was formed when Brahma dropped a lotus flower on the earth to determine a place for his "yagna" (e.g. self mortification), a holy sacrifice. The story goes that Brahma wanted to perform the holy sacrifice at the most auspicious time but his consort Savitri, whose presence at the “yagna” was vital for its performance, kept him waiting.
Irritated by this Brahma married a milkmaid and installed her instead. Seeing someone else in her place, Savitri got angry and cursed Brahma that he would be forgotten by people on earth and never worshiped. She relented on pleas from other Gods that Brahma could only be worshiped in Pushkar, hence there are no Brahma Temples elsewhere……
However, Savitri got a temple on her own, for the Hindus built her an altar on top of the mountain beside the lake.
Apparently this is not the only Brahma temples in the world, as per the founding myth at Pushkar…
Although Brahmâ is prayed to in almost all Hindu religious rites, there are very few temples dedicated to him in India, with the Pushkar one being the most proeminent.
There are also other temples dedicated to Brahma in Goa, (in the small, remote village of Carambolim in the Sattari taluka in the northeast region of the state); in the temple town of Kumbakonam, (Thanjavur District) in Tamil Nadu; and in Thirunavaya in Kerala. There is also a shrine for Brahma within the Bramhapureeshwarar temple in Thirupattur, near Trichy and a famous murti of Brahmâ at Mangalwedha, 52 km from Solapur district in Maharashtra, the largest of which is in Angkor Wat in Cambodia. In Khedbrhama, Gujarat, there is a statue of Brahma.
Puskhar hosting one of the few temples dedicated to Brahma, it’s useful to say a few words about him.
First of all, do not mix Brahma (the God of Creation) with the Brahman (Supreme Cosmic Spirit).
For me, it was impossible to have a superficial understanding of the Hindu pantheon of Gods. The fact that there are so many Gods, presumably everyone with his own “specialisation”, gets even more complicated when…every God comes in different forms of manifestations, or incarnations…with different names and representations…
Fondest memory: However, what can be easily seen is that Vishnu, Shiva and Ganesh are “very popular”, if one is to count the number of temples and shrines dedicated to them all around India, while Brahma the Creator is almost absent, he does not have temples of his own.
And here is where the tricky part comes – if Brahma is “the Creator”, with Vishnu being the maintainer or preserver, Shiva the destroyer or transformer and Ganesh the wisdom guy, then why is Brahma so “under worshiped” compared with the other gods? Some may argue that Brahmā is prayed to in almost all Hindu religious rites….but this is not enough, for there is an obvious close relation between the number of temples dedicated to a god and his relative importance vis-à-vis the other gods. Is creation itself less important, or less practical in daily life, than the preservation, or the destruction, or the success-associated Ganesh?
Favorite thing: Pretty hot in summers and becomes green with first rain in end of June or Julay as all its small mountains become green, in winters temperature is chilled.