One of the biggest temples in New Zealand devoted to Lord Rama and other Deities is set to open its doors to the community on June 13, 2015.
With a number of common facilities, the new Ram Mandir Complex will appeal to members of other communities and faiths, reinforcing the belief of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ (The World is One Family).
Conceptualised by the Shri Ram Mandir Trust in October 2011, the Project, incorporating an extensive Temple Complex, aims to create a place of worship and a venue for religious, community, social and domestic festivals and events.
Located at 11 Brick Street in the West Auckland suburb of Henderson, West Auckland, the Mandir Complex intends to be the home of Indian culture and account for the largest community hall of the Indian community in Auckland.
Trust Chairman Pravin Kumar (Managing Director of Lotus Foreign Exchange) said that the 2366 Square Meters Plot was purchased in 2012 with funds donated by a Trustee. According to our earlier report, the cost of land was about $1 million.
“The total cost of the Project is expected to be about $5 million, making the Ram Mandir one of the most expensive Hindu Temples in the country. We have had several challenges and problems, each of which was overcome with the Grace of Lord Rama. The Temple in fact personifies our God, with the lesson that sincerity and hard work will always be rewarded with success and pursuit of excellence with truth and honesty will always be victorious. This Temple is a testimony to the fact that Good always wins,” he said, speaking to Indian Newslink last week.
He was removing scaffolding from the Main Dome as this correspondent met him on Sunday, April 26, 2015. We have often been told that apart from being his dream project, Mr Kumar has ‘moved heaven and earth,’ to initiate, implement and complete the Project. He moved the heavens for timely rain and the earth as a part of construction works.
Mr Kumar and his fellow Trustees and a growing circle of friends raised the requisite capital through private sources. These include donations, sponsorships, and fundraising events conducted over the past three years.
Mr Kumar and his Trustees have relentlessly pursued efforts to ensure that construction work, which began with the Bhoomi Pooja on July 21, 2012 (reported in Indian Newslink August, 1, 2012 issue) never stops due to paucity of financial, material or human resources. Towards this objective, Mr Kumar and other Trustees organised a number of programmes and events to raise awareness and money.
One such was the ‘Ramamathon,’ a 35-kilometre marathon held on November 30, 2014. It started at the Ramakrishna Temple in the South Auckland and culminated at the new Temple site. This initiative attracted hundreds of patrons, contributing to this endeavour.
Designed by Architect Manoj Dutta, it would be a stunning piece of Architecture, highlighting the social and community significance of a Temple.
Mr Kumar said that workers from New Zealand, India and Fiji are passionately and tirelessly working on the intricate wood and marble work inside the Ram Mandir.
“The Trust imported nine containers of marble and teak wood from India. Eight beautiful domes embellish the Mandir and visitors will be welcomed by two marble Elephants adorning both sides of the entry,” he said.
A Four-foot statue of Lord Rama, along with his Goddess Sitalakshmi will occupy the centre of the Mandir.
As well as the Shiva Lingam, the Temple will be the residence for Lord Shiva, Goddess of Power and Valour Parvathi and Durga, Goddess of Wealth Mahalakshmi Goddess of Knowledge Saraswathi and Lord Krishna.
Alongside the Deities, framed marble wall hangings will depict the lives of Lord Vishnu, Lord Rama and Lord Krishna. Devotees can pray to Lord Hanuman housed in a stone- coloured Mandir on arrival.
This is symbolic of the legend that Lord Hanuman, the greatest friend and worshipper of Lord Rama will always be near his God, protecting and serving Him.
The most important ceremony conducted before the opening of a Temple and commencement of worship is ‘Prana Pratishta,’ the Hindu term for Consecration.
The ceremony will be held from June 6 to 12, 2015 at the Mandir. Yagya Shalas will be set up to felicitate the Ceremony, giving devotees a chance to take part in prayers during the day and watch Cultural Programmes in the evenings.
The Temple will be officially inaugurated on June 13, 2015
Further details will be published in our next issue.
- The Main Dome
- Marble Elephants welcome devotees
- Learn about Lord Vishnu through marble wall hangings