|Beautiful carvings on sandstone|
The temple is build in the memory and to worship Lord Swaminarayan who is believed to be an avatar of Lord Narayana, during the period of 1781 – 1830. The majestic, intricately carved stone structure stands amid sprawling gardens. Six thousand tones of pink sandstone were used in building the monument which is regarded as an architectural masterpiece. The intricate carvings on the pillars, walls & the ceilings are simply outstanding. On entering the temple, we see a huge 7 feet high golden statue of Lord Swaminarayan.
On the 1st and 2nd floor of the monument are the museum that have preserved the belongings of Lord Swaminarayan such as clothes, bed spread, hats, his room replica, hair, bones and ashes from cremation and teeth and nail bits when he was alive. Devotees preserve these, believing they still hold his spirituality.
Coming out of the temple there are two other attractions;
- Mystic India - the video presentations of his teachings and small clips of a movie of his biography. Ticket Rs. 45 per head
- A 45-minute laser water show depicts the story of Nachiketa from the Kathopanishad. The show, the longest of its kind, features the use of 4,000 nozzles, 2,000 lights, over 100 pumps and 12 fireball throwers. Ticket Rs. 75 per head.
Here is the official trailer video of the laser show.
A few personal disappointments! The Mystic India video was very beautiful showing Indian culture and people and celebrations. It actually made me feel like why I would ever leave my country which has such a rich ancient culture. We are good people with vast mysterious interesting history. Or living aboard will make me miss so many, actually infinite little things. The video mentioned the history of Indian spirituality which was quite interesting and I was totally hooked to the video. But as the video came to an end, people just stood up and started walking out, to the extent that I had to stand up and watch the last 5 mins of the show. It was sad in a way that my own people are not fascinated by the country’s history and magnificent culture. I wondered who is the target audience here then. I am neither too religious not spiritual, but to know of ancient Indian history was very interesting. Great day! This should be check on the Indian bucket list.
Note: I gathered some temple pictures online to share.