Akshardham Temple

This is a repost from my last year’s post about the visit to this AWESOME temple which has found its place in Guiness book
and for being the largest Hindu Temple in the world.

Ok… so read on….. (since its a repost, kindly read it as if written on d day of the visit, on which it was actually written :))

One Word – AWESOME!

Date of visit: Jan 1, 2006
Location: Delhi – Noida border

[AWESOME! The pics here are from the net as they did not allow cams n mobs inside. I’d upload a pic or two wid me too]

Ok! so it was decided all of a sudden…..
Its new year….and we decided [like always]….. that we’d go out on the foggy morning…. mom kept it a surprise… I was a bit upset….thinking ….that it should not be one of the old places we’ve already visited…. but got ready…… and quietly followed her…..

We drove around the place…. and I was listening to my favourite music….. mom was saying something… but I was lost in thoughts [shawie mom….. I know what you said…its just that at that time I was a bit lost somewhere].

I guess it was also E-id today…… and I was surprised to see the traffic on a Monday!

Well, soon I started coming back to the chirpy birdie mood which I am generally in 🙂
and as soon as I saw the new curved bridge, I just wished mom wasn’t driving to one of those markets 😦
n then the turn …n yes, I was almost jumping in the car 🙂 I pecked on her cheeks for taking me to Akshardham temple – wow! it had been so long since I had wanted to visit this AMAZING….yes you MUST visit the place to feel what I was feeling 🙂
OK…in an all ecstatic mood, we entered the compound, parked the four-wheeler, locked up our cams/mobiles n stuff-after listening to the announcements being made about the same… n trotted towards the mandatory security check.

Generally, I am not happy with the security checks – the unnecessary delay they cause for the oh-so important security, but as I have said earlier, I was delirious enough to even notice them.

Okay, so fiddling with our tiny bag, we followed the crowd towards the gates.
We reached a circular gateway with 10 gates, arranged in two semi-circles of five gates each. The inscription close-by said what mom had told me….. there are ten auspicious directions,and those ten gates were there to direct-in and direct-out auspicious energies from- and to- all directions.

Next, we moved ahead to a small fountain with charnpaduka of Swami Narayan ji with auspicious symbols and water pouring in from four directions on them.

Engaged in the beauty of the temple, and the serene environment, I looked up and was mesmerised by what stood before me! It was a The Akshardham Temple’s main monument constructed of Jaipur’s pink stone, and Italian Carrara marble , and boasting of two-hundred-and-thirty carved pillars, nine ornate domes, a magnificent base of carved elephants, and twenty-thousand statues of India’s saddhus or saints-phew!
This sprawling campus over hundred acres of land,by literature, had taken over USD $40 million to complete.

We climbed up the stairs of the temple [of course after removing out slippers in the Boot-House], with me thanking mom again and again to bring me to this awesome place – and she kept on repeating that any visit to a holy/spiritual place is “when there is a bulawa [call form the Gods]” and it was our turn too today.

In the picture above, one sees a huge statue of Swami Narayan ji – either in Gold, or Gold plated [if I remember correctly from the terrorist attacks on the Akshardham temple in Gujrat – I guess it should be Gold!]. The main temple had idols of Lord Vishnu-Lakshmi, Radhey-Krishna, Shiva-Parvati, and Sita-Ram on all four sides -all carved beautifully in white marble.

Walls had pictures depicting the life of Swami Narayan ji and his teachings.
You can well see the lovely carved dome-shaped ceiling.

After doing the pradakshina (rounds) of the temple, and enjoying the hard work done to bring stone and metal into life,


we went and took our slippers back, and bought a ticket – costing Rs, 125 per person for the Exhibition.

There are three Exhibitions – first two lasting around 50 minutes each, and the last one-called Nauka/Sanskruti Vihar – for around 15 mins.
So, we can say that, spending about half -an hour in the main temple, you need an additional 2.5 hours for these exhibitions – and I must say – for the first-time visitors, they are a MUST -watch and worth the money shelled-out.
There is proper arrangement of snacks and drinks at nominal price.

Other friends who had visited the temple, had told me that one should visit this temple around 4 pm in the evening so that one can enjoy the mesmerising beauty with the lights on.

We enjoyed the exhibitions with two more families – one Indian couple travelling form Bombay, and a Japanese couple staying in India for some time:
Hall 1, named Sahajanand Pradarshan, features life-like robotics, dioramas, and scenes from Swaminarayan‘s life, portraying his message of peace, harmony, humility, service to others and devotion to God.
Hall 2, namedNilkanth Kalyan Yatra, houses Delhi’s first and only large format screen. The theatre shows a movie specially commissioned for the complex that shows the journey Swaminarayan made during his teenage years across the length and breadth of India.
Hall 3, named ‘Sanskruti Vihar, takes visitors on a journey through 10,000 years of Indian history in 10 minutes. Visitors sit in specially designed peacock boats that make their way around an artificial river, passing the worlds first university, chemistry laboratories, ancient hospitals and bazaars, finally ending with a message for the future of India.

Overall, an ecstatic experience for me, and that too on the first day of the New Year….. a spiritual discourse in heavenly surroundings, some souvenirs [one could choose from laddoo gopalji, Lord Krishna’s idols along with many others, key chains, bracelets, calendars, stationery, and various other collectibles] from the temple, and mom’s blessings…. I do look forward to a great New Year ahead…. and wish the same for all friends 🙂

There is MUCH more to this writeup – a lot more to experience… but I guess you once need to visit the place 🙂 whenever you visit Delhi…..
Keep Smiling and shining…..

chao
Note: Visit the blog if you wanna read bout my Singapore visit – had promised writing it up last year…. but better late than never 😉

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Magnificent…. isn’t it?
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3 thoughts on “Akshardham Temple”

  1. Wow! wonderful blog! Amazing writeup. You write so beautifully and lovingly. I read it almost 3 times. Good work!

    Like

  2. Hey angel!
    so well written it was almost like a virtual tour. Simple and crisp writing and outstanding presentation! Keep it up. All your blogs are awesome!

    Like

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