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Temples & Legends Of Bengal
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Temples & Legends Of India
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Bengal

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Somanatha

EKTESVARA

When the people were ready, a priest with the customary puja post sanctified the Charak. The smaller arm of the whirling crossbeam at the top was turned and brought over the wooden platform. The man who was to swing climbed the platform by a temporary staircase of wood with some other devotees, while two more stood below holding the longer rope in their hands.

When he was ready, they would reduce the pressure on the rope, so as to make the arm of the cross-beam on their side go up and the other arm bend down. The hook was then thrust through the flesh on the back of the man, but if he showed any signs of fainting; he was not allowed to undertake the risk of swinging.

Otherwise, the men below pulling down the other end of the beam lifted him off his feet; and one or both of them holding the large rope went quickly round the post, so as to whirl the man in the air.This continued for 10 or 15 minutes, according to the man's power of Mahadeva and scattering flowers upon the assembled worshippers below.  His turn being over, the others would follow him one by one until was time for them to disperse.

The passage of time and statutory prohibition have affected the Charak Puja at Ektesvara but the Gajan and mela continue with some touches of modernism which are inevitable.7


7 "Paschim Banger Sanskriti" (Bengali) by Binoy Ghosh, Calcutta (1957).

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Temples & Legends Of Bengal.
About Ektesvara
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