Y5 visit to the Swaminarayan Mandir

On Tuesday 2 April, Y5 went to see Swaminarayan Mandir in Neasden.  It is a beautiful building, but to get into it we had to go through security and then we had to take our shoes off.  To show our respect to the Hindu faith, we had to make sure we were dressed appropriately and that we did not show any bare skin on our legs. 

First of all, we sat on a mat which had different religious symbols, eg the lotus flower and a conch shell.  Then we saw a clip about how the Mandir was built.  Many years ago Yogiji Maharaj had a vision about creating a Mandir in London for the Hindus living here and his successor, Pramukh Swami Maharaj, made his dream come true. 

The temple took three years to build.  Marble from Italy and limestone from Bulgaria was shipped to India, and, along with Indian wood and marble, where it was carved into beautiful sculptures by Indian craftsmen and then shipped to England.  It was originally thought it would cost £24 million but because so many people gave their help voluntarily it cost only £12 million. 

We learnt many facts about the Hindu religion and we were allowed to see a Puja ritual.  We saw a man dip his finger into a red substance, wave his hand over a flame and place a dot on his forehead and we saw a worshipper kiss the floor in front of some statues.  There was a lot of respect and devotion seen in the temple and it felt a very holy place. 

The visit was awesome and it was enjoyable in many ways, especially to see all the beauty in the temple.  It felt a spiritual place and we were made to feel very welcome. 

Archie and George
Year 5