Sujata Temple (Bodhgaya, Bihar) – Here, Sujata, The Maiden offered Milk-Rice to Lord Buddha

Sujata Mandir, Bakraur Village nearby Bodhgaya, Bihar

We booked an entire auto nearby Mahabodhi temple to reach Sujata temple as well as Sujata Garh – both nearby each other and is across the river Niranjana known as Falgu in Gaya. The auto charged us Rs. 200 – to and fro journey. We started our journey at 8:25 am reached Sujata temple at 8:40 am. 5-6 km is the distance from Mahabodhi temple. Road condition – Ok.

Upendra Pathak (0 – 99730 11760) is temple caretaker and runs a school in the village. Upon the visit he narrated The History of Sujata temple as follows:

This is banyan tree. For ages nearby villagers having faith and worship this tree specially during Vat Savitri day or marriage function. Sujata was the daughter of village-head. She also prays at this banyan tree in those days and had a wish to have a child. If fulfilled she will offer milk-rice to banyan tree. During that time Gautam Siddhartha in search of knowledge visited this very place and started meditation under this tree.

Soon Sujata wish was fulfilled and she becomes mother. One day she sent one of her maid – Panna to sweep the area around banyan tree as she has to visit to offer milk-rice. When Panna visited, she saw a young man with weak body meditating under the banyan tree. She went back and narrated this to Sujata. Sujata immediately prepared milk-rice and visited banyan tree while having a thought the man must be God of banyan tree. She offered milk-rice to Gautam Siddhartha by saying – Banyan God please accept milk-rice as offering. Gautam Siddhartha opened his eyes and was surprised. He said: I am not banyan God. I am a simple human being in search of knowledge wandering here and there. Sujata said: Your body is so weak you should accept milk-rice as offering. Again Gautam Siddhartha without accepting milk-rice went into meditation. At this time Sujata along with her friends sang a song:

hey veena ke vadak, veena ke taar ko itna mat kaso ki taar toot jaye

aur itna bhi dheela na karo ki usse aawaz hi na nikle..

That means one should not give too much pain to himself nor enjoy too much relaxation. One should always follow middle path.

This song was understood by Gautam Siddhartha. He accepted a short break in meditation that was making his body weak and accepted milk-rice. Gautam Siddhartha five followers who were with him from Rajgrih (also known as Rajgir) was watching this. They immediately left Gautam Siddhartha while thinking him as a hypocrite. Gautam Siddhartha tried to stop them but they were adamant to leave. This made Gautam Siddhartha say: Will alone continue the journey in search of knowledge and will follow middle path. To test whether his search will end with positive results or not he throws the utensil given by Savitri into Niranjana river to watch whether it flows opposite direction of river flow or not. And it did. That means the search will end with positive results, and he continues his journey till he was enlightenment under Peepul tree at Bodgaya.

Thank you very much Upendra for narrating history. Upon the query why two names of village?

Upendra said: Earlier this village was known as Senani but now it is known as Bakraur Village. Now-a-days devotees from all over the world visit this banyan tree to offer prayer and flag. The flag is known as panchsheel. During the fourth week of meditation five colors emanated from the body of Lord Buddha and flag represent those five colors.

Very informative. Thanks again. And we started our journey towards Sujata Garh which is nearby. Thanks again Upendra.

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