Swami Pushkarini - Supreme of All Tirthas
Lord Sri Maha Vishnu, having left his abode Vaikuntha settled on the southern side of Swami Pushkarini, in the form of Sri Venkateswara along with his beloved Divine Spouse Goddess Ramaa Devi enjoying the serenity of its surroundings.
In the pilgrimage to Tirumala Three things are strongly recommended. Of which
- the first one is taking a holy dip in the Swami Pushkarini.
- the second one is - to have the Darshan of Lord Sri Venkateswara and
- the third and the final one having the Prasada.
These three are not available in any of the other regions of the three worlds.
Seven Tirthas - fulfilling the desires of devotees
One among the twenty divine names of the Sri Venkatadri is 'Tirthadri' i.e. the abode of sacred water places. As per the description in various Puranas like Brahma Purana, Brahmanda Purana, Padma Purana, Varaha Purana and other Puranas there are 1008 major Tirthas on the hill of this Tirumala out of which 108 have divine power of fulfilling the desires of Sri Venkateswara’s devotees.
Among these 108 Tirthas, there are only SEVEN Tirthas which can grace the devotees with Moksha. They are:
- Swami Pushkarini,
- Kumara Dhara Tirtha,
- Tumburu Tirtha,
- Rama Krishna Tirtha,
- Akasha Ganga Tirtha,
- Papa Vinashana Tirtha and
- Pandava Tirtha.
A holy Dip in any one of these seven Tirthas will assure the devotee a permanent place in Vaikuntha, the Divine Abode of Sri Maha Vishnu. Here it can be observed that Swami Pushkarini is in the forefront of the Seven Tirthas of salvation.
According to various accounts, we come across - every tirtha on the back of this Divine Mountain is the second form of some sage or divine being or a devotee of Lord Srinivasa. Accordingly, whose form is this Swami Pushkarini is a question of curiosity for all.
While there are several accounts in Vamana, Brahmanda, Bahvishyottara, Skanda, Varaha and Padma Puranas praising the greatness of Swami Pushkarini, the account found in Brahma Purana needs a special attention as it gives the details of the origin of this Sacred Tirtha on this Venkatachala.
Holy bath in the Swami Pushkarini
Having been advised by Brahma the sage had been to Swami Pushkarini and took a dip in it with great faith and attained the Punya that is equal to taking bath in all the Tirthas in the Universe.
Following him, Kubera, Chandra, Manmatha, Indra and all other gods in different times and on different occasions came to this Swami Pushkarini took holy bath in it and made different kinds of Dana.
In the Bhavishyat Purana, some more episodes are added. As found there a person named Sankha of a royal family took holy bath in Swami Pushkarini and became a Sovereign King.
A Brahmin named Narayana took a holy dip in this holy lake and got Moksha. Sri Rama, the son of Dasaratha, could trace out Sita only after taking a bath in this Swami Pushkarini.
There are many stories connected to the greatness of this Swami Pushkarini.
Chakra Snana ceremony
Hence every year, on the Dvadasi of the bright fortnight (Lunar Tithi) in Dhanurmasa (Solar Calendar Month) all the Three and Half Crore holy Tirthas of the Mahabhumi (Which is extended up to the Polar Star Dhruva) enter this Swami Pushkarini.
In connection with this auspicious occasion, the event of the Divine Chakra Snana ceremony (Holy bath) is performed on the banks of Swami Pushkarini soon after the early morning Aradhana rituals to Sri Swamivaru in the Sanctum Sanctorum at Tirumala Temple.
All the blessed pilgrims avail this opportunity to participate in the Chakra Snana ceremony and take a holy dip in Swami Pushkarini after the ceremony is performed.
The grace of Lord Srinivasa also will be showered on all the devotees on this occasion.