Karni Mata, the temple of rats

The Karni Mata Hindu temple was built by Maharajah Ganga Singh in the early 1900s as a tribute to the rat goddess, Karni Mata and the most intriguing aspect of it, is that it’s home for over 20.000 worshiped rats.

The legend behind this temple is that Karni Mata, a matriarch from the 14th century was a reincarnation of Durga, the goddess of power and victory. at one point one of her clansmen’s child died and she tried to bring it back to life only to be told by Yama, the god of death that he had already reincarnated as a rat. Karni Mata struck a deal with Tama, that all her dead clansmen would reincarnate as rats, until they were ready to be born again into the tribe.

It’s a nice story but I can’t stop thinking about how that place must smell…










Posted in Pics, Travel, WTF        Tags: , , , , , ,

Feedback (18 Comments)

  • jalansutera Posted on February 25, 2008

    I agree with you that it is a very nice story. But I think I will vomit if I visit the temple. It must be disgusting.

  • micAh! Posted on February 25, 2008

    I’ve seen this on TV before… personally I think it’s digusting especially how that lady is petting the fucking rat WITH NO SHOES ON!!! UGH!!!

  • TheMobiBlog Posted on February 25, 2008

    I have seen this on PBS and thought it was a brilliant story and cinematography. I have to agree that the rats are just disgusting and to see that guy eat and sleep with rats is nauseating.

  • eric svenningson Posted on February 25, 2008

    rats need a place to chill too people.

  • Cai Posted on February 25, 2008

    Actually, rats are fairly clean for rodents. Given the choice and the chance, they wouldn’t be that bad.

    Look at how many people keep rats as pets.

  • Mino Posted on February 26, 2008

    Oh, my GOD! I can’t believe these pictures!

  • squidelicious Posted on February 26, 2008

    rats ARE very clean, as pets. ive got 2, and having had several different sorts of rodent-type pets, i have to say that they are by far the most clean, intelligent, and sociable i’ve had yet.
    you can teach them tricks and games, and they come when you call their names. rats are awesome!
    im gonna visit this place some day.

  • phitar Posted on February 26, 2008

    you need to get in there bare foot, as in any indian temple. and if a rat walks over your feet, that’s lucky

  • Mily Sharma Posted on February 27, 2008

    Thats a lovely temple. I have visited there when I went to Rajasthan.There is a white rat too and watching that is considered very lucky.This temple is awesome infact.

  • Questionable Posted on February 28, 2008

    Yis. Whu klen up de rat schit?

  • seamonkeyboy Posted on February 28, 2008

    the reason the women in the picture has no shoes on is because dispite the rats this place is a temple, most india worship/holy sites involved removing your shoes to enter.

  • alliegator Posted on March 1, 2008

    in general rats don’t smell. they are very clean kind and friendly creatures.
    the reason that they have a bad reputation and people think they smell is because they can survive and eat off of our garbage. we often kick them out of our house because they would rather eat our nice clean food (understandable but unacceptable.

    the only thing that could possibly smell in that temple would be their excretion, which i’m sure is cleaned by many of the avid worshipers on a daily basis if not more.

    rats are our friends.

  • Hizzoner Posted on March 5, 2008


  • Lol Posted on March 15, 2008

    Lol, Hizzoner’s at it again (don’t take him seriously, he does this on a lot of things, and I’m pretty sure he’s not serious).

    Apparently, there’s a pretty massive fine for accidentally stepping and killing on a rat (like the weight of the person represented in silver, or someting), since every single rat represents a soul that will be reincarnated at some later date.

  • Sofar Posted on March 16, 2008

    I’ve seen much worse rat-holes and much filthier rats, these guys seem pretty healthy, kinda cute. And the carvings on the walls are nice.

  • Lilith Diabolique Posted on October 11, 2008

    They’re lucky they don’t live in Thailand…go and take a look of what they do to rats there, it’s another story here in Oddity Central…

  • Mukundaram Das Posted on November 21, 2008

    Mukundaram das says better send them all to Vrndavana and get liberation.
    Hare Krishna.