Lotus Temple

6/20/2011













I know I said that Humayun's Tomb is perhaps my favourite site so far in Delhi but - that's not quite true. I also really really like The Baha'i House of Worship. Commonly called the Lotus Temple, because of it's shape (check out the 27 marble clad "petals"), is open (and free) to all - regardless of your faith. The interior is beautifully and minimally decorated (sorry, not allowed to take pictures inside) and you are encouraged to sit inside and pray (silently) for as long as you want. When I went inside I found it to be incredibly.....relaxing. It was encouraging to see visitors (foreigners and non-foreigners alike) of different religions sitting respectfully among each other either enjoying the calming silent atmosphere or with their eyes closed (or head bowed) in silent prayer. A nice reminder that we can all live together regardless of what we believe.

The exterior of the building itself (along with the surrounding pools and well manicured lawns)....well it speaks for itself, no? Gorgeous.

Designed by architect Fariborz Sahba - since it's completion in 1986 the Lotus Temple has become one of the most visited buildings in the world and has also won numerous design awards. I'd definitely recommend visiting it if you visit Delhi. I found it particularly beautiful to photograph just before sunset (and of course I don't have those pics with me right now to include in this post lol).


14 comments:

  1. very nice pictures. lotus temple is gorgeous.

    i wonder if you had a chance to visit
    "bangla sahib gurudwara". its a historic sikh temple. wiki it. it is very serene, open to all faiths. quite popular with tourists as well. lots of open space/water way.
    right in the vicinity of connaught place.
    drop your shoes at the shoe check. cover your head with a scarf and you would feel more than welcome. highly recommended.

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  2. hi anon - thanks for your comment about my pics. is that the really big gurudwara that has the pretty famous/popular communal eating? where people help cook, clean up, and everyone eats together? well - even if it's not i'll be sure to add it to my places to visit list as it sounds like it would be really nice to see. thanks for the recommendation!

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  3. one of my faves too ...

    when my mama and I visited, there was an organized period of singing - which was GORGEOUS ...

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  4. hi

    This gurudwara in CP has to be the one you seem to have heard of. one of my fav places in delhi and I aint even a sikh.

    Theres another historic one in chandni chowk, albeit much smaller, named "sis ganj gurudwara", literally refering to the spot where one of the last sikh gurus was beheaded by the tyrant mughal emperor just about before the british took over.

    but bangla sahib should be a must see. serenity and communal love in all its glory.
    (i would take my own scarf/ handkerchief :))

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  5. such a pretty place, loving your pictures!! too bad we cannot see the interior... must be great as well!!

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  6. Wow, that is a beautiful piece of architecture. And I love the building's purpose.

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  7. I'm so sad that I didn't get to stop in while I was in Delhi. We only just drove by for pics. I've heard how divine the food is!

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  8. Gorgeous photos and place.

    Thanks for sharing about this place, I love that this is a place for all to worship. I am not particularly religious, but I love places that are all inclusive, there's something very magical about that.

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  9. Reminds me of the Sydney Opera House in Australia. These are great photos. One of my good friends is Baha'i and it is a really amazing faith in its openness and embrace of various religions/races. Not surprised that the architecture of the temple reflects the beauty of their beliefs.

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  10. Some of these pictures could totally be the opera house :)

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  11. wow this place is gorgeous, amazing pictures as always.

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  12. Wow that is so beautiful! I can only imagine how much more gorgeous is it in person

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  13. man i love humayuns tomb too. we never made it to the lotus temple either time we've been to india! now i really regret it. maybe next time. I love your pictures, it makes me crave india....

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