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Traditional stone-carved Hindu temple set to open in Central New Jersey

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Robbinsville,New Jersey—The BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha is set to inaugurate its sixth traditional stone mandir in North America located inRobbinsville,New Jersey. The mandir has been built according to the Hindu Shilpa Shastras or ancient architectural texts following a tradition of temple building through the millennia. Inspired by His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the intricately hand-carved mandir is built to last thousands of years. It stands as a testament to the dedication, service and devotion of the organization’s many volunteers and well-wishers,” said a press statement issued by the sanstha. The inauguration of this traditional stone mandir marks the completion of the second phase of the Swaminarayan

Akshardham complex that is currently planned for the site. The mandir is 134 feet long and 87 feet wide, comprising of 108 pillars and three garbha gruhs or inner sanctums.

The entire mandir has been covered by a permanent structure to increase the structure’s life and accommodate darshan and worship during the region’s harsh winter. The Mandir is made entirely of Italian marble and was completed in three years at a cost of $18 million. This was made possible by the dedication and selfless service of professional volunteers, including engineers and architects, who helped to minimize the cost of the mandir.

The inauguration ceremonies began with a Vedic Yagna or sacrificial ritual for world peace and was followed by a Shobha Yatra or celebratory procession of the deities.

The Mandir complex will be opened to the community and public on August 16 at a special dedication ceremony hosting community leaders from within the Indian-American community and from around the region. His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj will be traveling toNew Jerseyto be a part of the inauguration ceremonies and festivities. He will be joined by a delegation of 40 sadhus and priests fromIndiato officiate the rituals of the installation. Adding to this joyous occasion, local devotees will be joined by devotees from around the world who have made their own arrangements to attend the festivities.

After its opening, the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Robbinsville, NJ, like other BAPS mandirs, will not only be a center of Hindu liturgy, but will also provide a spiritual haven for aspirants and devotees in their local community. The murtis of the chief deities of the mandir, Bhagwan Swaminarayan along with his ideal devotee, Gunatitanand Swami, will be installed in the mandir’s central shrine. The murtis of other Hindu deities,

including Radha Krishna Dev, Sita-Ram Dev, Shiv-Parvati Dev, Hanumanji and Ganeshji, too will be in stalled within the mandir’s shrines. The mandir will help preserve Hindu ritual, beliefs, andIndian traditions for generations to come.

The BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha inaugurated its first traditional stone temple (and the first traditional stone Hindu Mandir in North America) in Stafford,Texas, a suburb ofHouston, on July 25, 2004. This milestone was followed one month later by the opening of the second such temple inBartlett,Illinoisoutside ofChicago. In the summer of 2007, traditional stone temples were inaugurated inLilburn,GeorgianearAtlantaand in

Toronto,Canadafollowed byChino Hills,Californiain December of 2012. These mandirs benefit the Indian-American community by providing a center for cultural and moral preservation.

In 2013, the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir inLilburn,GAhosted a spiritual and cultural convention that was attended by nearly 10,000 children and youth from centers in North America. These mandirs also host a variety of activities for children and youth on a weekly basis, including music, language, education and career preparation, and Hinduism classes.

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