Rajasthan is famous for numerous unbelievable sights. The unique and weird of all is the temple for a thousand rats. Located around 30 km to the south of Bikaner, in a town named Deshnok, this is one of the most religious destinations for locals and a circus show for tourists. Yes, the locals pray to the rats feed them with delicacies and what remains after the rats have nibbled on will be served as a sacred offering. Yes, I can read your mind. You would not want to eat anything from the temple.
The Temple of Rats
If you choose auto rickshaw, it would take one hour to reach the temple from Bikaner by spending around INR 450 per ride. There are also buses, which run from Bikaner to the region near the rat temple for just INR 20 per head. The backstory of the temple is weirder than the temple itself. It is said that Karni Mata was a religious woman, who lived in the 14th century and performed many miracles. One day, her youngest son, fell into the river and drowned to death. She ordered Yama to bring her son back to life and he couldn’t. She prayed and used her powers to restore life to her son and reincarnated him as a rat. She also prayed for the same wish for her entire family. Thus, her entire family would not die but would be reincarnated as rats. Thus, 600 families in Deshnok were reincarnated as rats. Are you interested? Take an exclusive Bikaner tour to cover this temple.
Unique Rituals and Beliefs that You Would Not Believe:-
- Today, the temple is filled with rats and you would be requested by the priests to remove your shoes before entering the temple. What will happen if the rat runs over my feet? Well, then, you would be considered as blessed. Yes, it is a sacred blessing to have a rodent walk over you.
- Are you worried about plague? Well, even when the entire state was suffering from plague, the holy rodents helped to keep the city safe from any disease, in the past.
- Do you want to be luckier? You need to spot a white rate. It is very hard to spot one and it would be funny to watch locals running from one corner to another to get a glimpse of a ‘white Jerry’.
- What happens when a rat dies in the temple? A silver rat statue is erected in memory of the rat and, it is believed that rat will be reincarnated as a human.
- If you find someone offering holy water in the temple, you are about to receive water that was left after being drunk by a few hundred rats.
- If you are looking for a glorious visit to the temple, you ought to visit the religious site at night. This is the time you can easily see a few thousand rats.
- Last but not least, the rats in the temple are reincarnated souls and should be worshiped. If the locals find a rat on the streets, they are just rats and can be treated like a normal rat.
There is a lot more to Karni Mata temple than what is explained above. Take a Rajasthan tour during your next vacation to enjoy the many unique factors of the state, including the rat temple.