Lotus Temple

The Bahai House of Worship situated in New Delhi, India is popularly known as Lotus Temple due to its white lotus like shaped exteriors. The beautiful temple has been widely acclaimed worldwide and has won several prestigious awards for excellence in art and architecture. It is one of the seven Bahai House of Worships located in different parts of the world. Lotus Temple of New Delhi is modeled on the design of national flower of India, i.e. Lotus. To pursue its goal of global commonwealth, the Lotus Temple is open for people of all faiths and religions.

Holy Scriptures of Bahai or other faiths could be read inside by the people in the temple but no sermons or music is allowed. There are no statues or pictures of gods or deities inside the temple complex. There isn't even any official temple clergy, however short prayer services and meditation sessions are held for the visitors inside the temple. The magnificent temple is spread over 26 acres of land and is surrounded by lush green gardens on all sides. It is a quite a peaceful place and one is inspired to communicate with the Creator when one enters inside the temple complex.

Lotus Temple consists of 27 free standing white marble clad petals of lotus flower which are arranged in the clusters of 3 to form nine sides of the temple complex. There are nine doors for entry into the temple that open into the main Gateway which is a little higher than 40 m. There are nine ponds of clear blue water from which 27 petals of the Lotus Temple seemingly emerge out. There is a hall of worship inside the temple in which more than 2500 people can assemble at a time. The white marble used in the construction of Lotus Temple is brought from the Penteli Mountains in Greece. The temple was open for the public in December 1986 and is visited by more than 15,000 people per day on an average throughout the year. During the first 10 years of its opening, the temple attracted more visitors per day on an average than those visiting the Taj Mahal or Eiffel Tower.

Chief architect of the Lotus Temple, the Iranian origin Fariborz Sahba has been honored with the Award for Excellence in Religious Art and Architecture by the UK based Institution of Structural Engineers. The temple architecture itself has won several awards including the prestigious GlobArt Academy Award and the Paul Waterbury Outdoor Lighting Design Award. Bahai World Center Library has archived more than 500 publications till date through which it has disseminated information to the public about the tenets of Bahai faith.

Government of India has also released a stamp featuring the Bahai House of Worship. Sathya Sai Baba and President of Iceland Olafur Ragnar Grimssson are among the notable visitors of the Lotus Temple. The magnificent temple has become a landmark of Delhi and one of its must visit tourist destinations.

Best time to visit the Lotus Temple is the winter months of October to March. It remains open from 09.00 AM to 07.00 PM in summer months and form 09.00 AM to 06.00 PM in winters. Lotus Temple remains closed on Mondays.

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