BAPS SWAMINARAYAN TEMPLE (Syllabus: GS Paper 1 – Art and Culture)

News-CRUX-10     15th February 2024        

Context: Prime Minister of India to inaugurate the BAPS Swaminarayan temple in Abu Dhabi in UAE, the 1st Hindu temple in the Gulf nation.

BAPS Swaminarayan Temple

  • Architectural Style: Nagara, reflecting India's rich heritage.
  • Materials: Exterior adorned with pink sandstone from Rajasthan, contrasting with the elegance of Italian marble interiors.
  • Domes: Two central domes, aptly named "Harmony" and "Peace," symbolize interfaith co-existence.
  • Wall of Harmony: A unique 3D-printed wall showcases the temple's construction journey through a captivating video.
  • Seven Spires: Each represents one of the seven Emirates, signifying unity with the local community.
  • Interfaith Bridge: Open to all, fostering understanding and respect among communities. Notably, land was donated by a Muslim king, with contributions from prominent figures of Christianity, Sikhism, Buddhism, Parsi, and Jain faiths.

Key Architectural Features 

  • Conception: A stone tableau portrays Pramukh Swami Maharaj's divine vision of the Abu Dhabi temple, conceived in 1997.
  • Pillars: Both circular and hexagonal, a singular structure stands out as the "Pillar of Pillars," intricately carved with an astonishing 1,400 miniature pillars within its form.
  • Deities: This multifaceted sanctuary enshrines revered deities from India's four corners, including Lord Ram, Shiva, Jagannath, Tirupati Balaji, and Lord Ayappa, fostering a spirit of universal devotion.
  • Holy River: Encircling the temple, a sacred waterway carries the blessed waters of the Ganges and Yamuna, flowing serenely alongside a Varanasi-inspired ghat where devotees can perform ritual ablutions. The mystical river Saraswati is represented by an ethereal white light, adding to the spiritual dimension.

Bochasanwasi Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS)

  • About: It  is a branch of the Swaminarayan Sampradaya, a Vaishnavite Hindu sect. BAPS has a global network of approximately 1,550 temples.
output themes