The 183-acre temple took nearly 12 years to be built and its construction involved over 12,500 volunteers from across the US.
Photo Credit: PTI
The grand opening of the world’s largest Hindu temple constructed outside of India in the modern era is set for October 8th in New Jersey. Situated approximately 60 miles south of Times Square in New York or 180 miles north of Washington DC, the BAPS Swaminarayan Akshardham temple in Robbinsville Township, New Jersey, was painstakingly built by more than 12,500 volunteers from all corners of the United States over a span of 12 years, from 2011 to 2023.
This massive Akshardham Temple, known for its colossal dimensions of 255 ft x 345 ft x 191 ft and sprawling across 183 acres, is currently drawing thousands of visitors each day, including Hindus and individuals from various faiths across the nation, who are gathering in anticipation of its official inauguration.
Designed in strict accordance with ancient Hindu scriptures and featuring design elements deeply rooted in India’s rich cultural heritage, the temple boasts a breathtaking array of 10,000 statues and statuettes, as well as intricate carvings portraying Indian musical instruments and dance forms. In terms of size, it is quite possibly the second largest globally, following Cambodia’s Angkor Wat.
The Angkor Wat Temple Complex, dating back to the 12th century, stands as the world’s largest Hindu temple, sprawling across 500 acres and earning recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage site. In contrast, the Akshardham Temple in New Delhi, opened to the public in November 2005, occupies a more modest 100-acre expanse.
Key Points about the Temple:
- New Jersey is set to unveil the world’s largest temple, the Akshardham Temple, on October 8.
- The majestic Mahamandir, a grand temple, is a tribute to Bhagwan Swaminarayan, a respected 19th-century Hindu spiritual leader.
- Construction on the Mahamandir began in 2015, and its official inauguration is scheduled for October 8, 2023, with Mahant Swami Maharaj and esteemed dignitaries presiding over the event.
- Spanning 185 acres in Robbinsville, the BAPS Swaminarayan Akshardham was brought to life through the expertise and dedication of over 12,500 volunteers from across North America.
- European stones were meticulously crafted in India before being transported to the United States, where a diverse group of volunteers, guided by skilled artisans from India, collaborated to craft the temple.
- Inside the temple, intricate stone sculptures and figurines skillfully depict the timeless legacy of Indian music, dance, and the performing arts, paying tribute to revered sages, saints, and spiritual leaders.
- The temple features a Mahashikhar embellished with a golden Kalash symbolizing completeness and excellence, with a flag, known as the Dhaja, signifying victory and the triumph of good over evil.
- The BAPS Swaminarayan Akshardham in New Delhi holds the Guinness World Record as the largest comprehensive Hindu temple within a 100-acre complex.
- The Akshardham Temple in the United States is expected to surpass its own prior accomplishments.
- The BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha has erected approximately 1,400 temples across various regions, including India, the UK, US, Canada, Kenya, South Africa, and Australia.
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