Embracing Divinity - The Magnificent BAPS Hindu Mandir,Abu Dhabi


The BAPS Hindu Mandir Abu Dhabi in the UAE, is a traditional Hindu mandir built by the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha. It is the first traditional Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi dedicated (trans. Prana Pratishtha) by Mahant Swami Maharaj on 14 February 2024. 

Pramukh Swami Maharaj envisioned a mandir in Abu Dhabi in 1997. The UAE government provided 27 acres of land in August 2015. Construction began in December 2019, using pink sandstone from Rajasthan and marble from Italy. The mandir stands 108 feet tall, 262 feet long, and 180 feet wide. Over 200 volunteers from various countries contributed more than 690,000 hours to its construction. It's the first Hindu stone mandir to undergo digital modeling and seismic simulations.

The mandir represents harmony between different faiths, showcasing India and the UAE's strong relations. It includes carvings depicting stories from Hindu texts and other civilizations like Arabian, Egyptian, and Mesopotamian. The complex has a Hindu mandir, visitor center, prayer halls, exhibitions, learning spaces, sports area, gardens, water features, food court, and shop. 

The "Festival of Harmony" started on February 10, 2024, celebrating the mandir's inauguration. On February 11, 2024, the "Yagna for Harmony," a Vedic ritual for divine blessings, occurred, marking a first in the region.On the morning of February 14, 2024, the mandir was consecrated through a Vedic ceremony led by BAPS spiritual leader Mahant Swami Maharaj. In the afternoon of February 14, 2024, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi joined Mahant Swami Maharaj in opening the mandir to the public. At the inaugural assembly, Narendra Modi, UAE Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, and BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha spiritual leader Mahant Swami Maharaj gave speeches.

Deities Enshrined in Harmony

The mandir's middle shrine houses the marble murtis (transl. sacred images) of Swaminarayan and Gunatitanand Swami, who are collectively worshiped as Akshar-Purushottam Maharaj. Swaminarayan is the founder of the Swaminarayan Sampradaya and is revered as Purushottam (God) and Gunatitanand Swami is the first spiritual successor of Swaminarayan and is revered as Akshar.

The second shrine houses the marble murtis of Krishna, an avatar of Vishnu, with his consort, Radha. Radha-Krishna are a central deity pair worshiped in Vaishnavism.The third shrine houses the marble murtis of Rama with his consort Sita, his brother Lakshmana, and Rama’s dedicated devotee Hanuman. Rama is worshiped as an avatar of Vishnu. The marble murtis of Shiva, a principal deity in Hindu traditions, with his consort Parvati, goddess of power and energy, and two sons, Ganesha and Kartikeya, are housed in the fourth shrine. 

The fifth shrine houses the black granite murtis of Srinivasa, also known as Venkateshwara, an incarnation of Vishnu, and his consort Padmavati who is an incarnation of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth. These murtis were crafted by expert artisans from the Tirupati temple in Andhra Pradesh. The murtis of Jagannath, a form of Krishna, accompanied by his siblings Subhadra and Balabhadra are housed in the sixth shrine. These murtis was made from cast metal under the supervision of the king of Jagannathpuri in Odisha. 

The seventh shrine is dedicated to the deity Ayyappan, the son of Mohini and Shiva. His murti is made from panchaloha (traditional five-metal alloy) and was designed by 15 artisans from Kerala. The murti sits on a pedestal and is four feet in height. The murti is also accompanied by a model of the 18 holy steps of the Sabarimala Ayyappa mandir in Kerala. 

The Mandir incorporates all aspects and features of a traditional Hindu Mandir as part of a complete functional, social, cultural and spiritual complex. The complex includes a visitor center, prayer halls, exhibits, study areas, a sports area for children, and thematic areas. Gardens, water features, a food court, a book and gift shop. The temple has 100 sensors at the base and 350 sensors throughout the temple to provide information about seismic activity, temperature changes and pressure changes. 

The mandir design also incorporates eco-friendly features such as reusing wooden planks to make benches, tables and chairs for the food court. The temple campus has a waterfall feature that symbolizes the source of the three rivers sacred to Hinduism – Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati.

Visitor Guidelines 

The BAPS Hindu Mandir Abu Dhabi to follow the below guidelines to ensure their visit is safe, enjoyable, and respectful.

Registration is mandatory and unregistered visitors may be denied entry. 

Please dress in line with the following guidelines: Cover the area of the body between the neck, the Elbow, and the ankles. Caps, t-shirts, and other clothing articles with offensive designs are not allowed. Do not wear translucent or tight-fitting clothing. Avoid clothing articles and accessories that make distracting noises or reflections. 

conduct routine security checks on arrival so please allow a little extra time to pass through the metal detector gates and the luggage X-ray machine. 

Please note that cloakroom / locker facilities are not available on the mandir premises. 

Wheelchairs and other mobility aides are welcome at the mandir. People of Determination will be given priority at the entry cue. 

cannot allow guide dogs or accompanying animals into the premises. 

Photography and filming on mobile devices at the BAPS Hindu Mandir are allowed for personal, non-commercial use only. 

Location: BAPS Hindu Mandir

P6 Al Taf Road (E16)

Abu Mureikha

Abu Dhabi, UAE

Exit 366,Sheikh Maktoum Bin Rashid Road (E11)

Visiting Hours: Tuesdays to Sundays : 9 AM - 8 PM

Mondays : Closed for Visitors

Entry Fee: Free Entry 

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post