What happened? What was the reason for this feeling of something being different, or out of place?
Of course, this single word answer explains little.
There is a legacy to understand first.
“Bahmni” is a small village in the Mahasamund district of India. The village is identified with the Brahmneshwar Nath Mahadev temple, because of which the village is named.
The temple is a pilgrimage for residents of Central India, especially during the Mahashivratri festival. People from nearby areas come to offer water and prayer to Lord Shiva.
Adjacent to the Lord Shiva temple is a kund (water tank), which is filled with water coming from a structure in the shape of a cow’s mouth. Locals call it Go-mukh, meaning “face of the cow”. The water pours through this structure in a thin stream while amazed visitors wonder at how this huge Kund is brimming with water most of the time.
People believe that this water comes from the Ganges.
The Ganges is a sacred river of India, equivalent to a goddess.
But of course to add to the sense of mystery surrounding the temple and its kind, the Ganges does not flow into this region.
The Ganges covers the cities in Northern India and merges with the Bay of Bengal. Central India is untouched by this river and its tributaries.
Despite the regional dissonance though, the kund is used to being affluent with water even during the summer season, when the wells and other bodies of water in the area keep drying.
So how is this mystery explained?
Legends say that this place has an underground source from river Ganges.
One of the ancestors, who discovered this place, submerged his walking stick in Haridwar (a holy pilgrimage site in India and the first city where the river Ganges enters) and days later, his stick was found at Bahmni. So he constructed the Go-mukh to identify the site of Ganges’s water. The original Go-mukh was made of stone and so was the kund.
People also speculate that the water is actually from the Ganges River because this water remains unspoiled for years.
Just like the water from the Ganges.
Yes, one can keep the Ganges’s water for years in an ordinary bottle, without any additives, and still the water will remain pure.
What was different and disappointing this time that I visited Bahmni is that people have constructed a cement tank and are drawing water from the nearby pond.
When I asked why, they told me that during summers the water in the tank dries up and the devotees don’t have an accessible water source to offer to Lord Shiva.
It could have been an important discovery of the past, what we don’t understand even today.
I have lived my childhood around this place, so I feel a deep sadness for it.
But we cannot simply count the number of Nature’s spectacles.
People must act to stop the ignorance of other people.
Photos courtesy of Nidhi Agrawal – All rights reserved.
Guest Author Bio
Nidhi Agrawal Nidhi Agrawal is a content consultant for Gozo Technologies Pvt Ltd, an organisation for inter-city travel and cab services in India. Nidhi currently lives in Indonesia and loves to explore places, hear stories, and find facts behind them.
Blog / Website: Gozocabs (https://www.gozocabs.com/)