|Max. width||1,800 ft (550 m)|
|Surface area||1,400 ft (430 m)|
|Max. depth||45 ft (14 m)|
Brahma Sarovar is an ancient water pool sacred to Hinduism in Thanesar, in the state of Haryana in North India. Hinduism lays emphasis on taking bath for internal and external purity. Most religious sites have water pools or sarovar in or near the temple/gurdwara. The Hindu genealogy registers at Kurukshetra, Haryana are kept here.
According to stories of myths, Lord Brahma created the universe from the land of Kurukshetra after a huge yajna. The Brahma Sarovar here is believed to be the cradle of civilization. The sarovar is also mentioned in the eleventh century AD memoirs of Al Beruni, called ‘Kitab-ul-Hind’. The sarovar also has a mention in Mahabharata citing its use by Duryodhana to hide himself under water on the concluding day of the war.
A sacred shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva stands within the sarovar, accessible by a small bridge. According to scriptures, bathing in this sarovar increases the sanctity of performing the ‘ashvamedh yajna’. The pool offers a breath-taking sight during the Gita Jayanti celebrations held each year in the last week of November and early December when a ‘deep daan’ ceremony of floating lamps in water and [Aarti] occurs. This also happens to be the time when migratory birds from distant places arrive at the sarovar. The Birla Gita Mandir and Baba Nath’s haveli and temple are the neighbouring attractions.
The historic Brahma Sarovar has been renovated with modern facilities and pathways. It is 3600 feet long and 1500 feet broad and is in the shape of perfect rectangle. It is considered as one of the largest man-made pools.
Solar eclipse ritual
The pools are especially crowded during solar eclipses because it is believed that bathing there during the solar eclipse is an ablution of sin. On 29 March 2006 a solar eclipse was visible in the region and it drew an estimated one million people to the site. Whenever an eclipse is visible from the Sarovar, hundreds of thousands gather in the pools.
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- "Religious Places in Kurukshetra - Brahma Sarovar". Kurukshetra district website. Archived from the original on 29 July 2014. Retrieved 8 August 2014.
- United New of India (29 March 2006). "Lakhs take dip in Brahma Sarovar on Occasion of Solar Eclipse". oneindia.in. UNI. Retrieved 25 October 2014.
- Dutt, K.G. (23 August 1998). "Three hundred thousand take holy dip". The Tribune India. Retrieved 25 October 2014.