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Adelaide Ganesh Temple

Adelaide Ganesh Temple

The Ganesha temple regularly hosts pujas and religious functions and caters to spiritual needs of the Hindus of Adelaide. The temple also provides a platform to meet and be at home while away from home for the students visiting South Australia to undertake higher education. Many friendships have been formed and the temple functions as temples in India. The Ganesha Temple has not only become a very important place in the lives of Hindus of Adelaide but also a centre for promoting social and cultural harmony.

Hinduism is one of the oldest religions in the world, dating back over 5000 years. It teaches us love, tolerance, peace and respect for other religions. Hinduism speaks of the One Supreme Divine but acknowledges that God is perceived in infinite forms in different Hindu traditions thereby giving freedom to every individual to think and practice their belief and worship in his or her own way.

Hindu texts speak of the Divine as a triad (known as the Trimurti) consisting of the gods Brahma as Creator, Vishnu as Preserver, and Shiva as Destroyer, together constituting the One Supreme God. While these Gods represent the principles of Transcendence, goddesses personify the dynamic energy (Shakti) which permeates and animates the phenomenal universe. Hindus also worship nature in the form of five elements of the universe – sun, earth, air, water and space – required for our very survival. Most of their religious teachings and practices are in line with the conservation and ecological preservation of this planet. Aeons ago Hindu philosophers also realized the existence of major planets and their exact relative positions to the Sun. Worshipping these nine planets is also part of the Hindu religion.

The general public, regardless of their faith, is welcome to visit the temple and witness the colorful rituals of worship. The Temple committee organizes group educational tours of the temple by appointment. From time to time excellent national and international speakers are invited to speak on the philosophy of life and the Hindu religion.

 

Adelaide Ganesh Temple (8) Adelaide Ganesh Temple (1) Adelaide Ganesh Temple (2)

 History of the Adelaide Ganesh Temple 

The Ganesha Temple is a unique jewel among the religious places in Adelaide – the beautiful multicultural city of churches. The magnificent traditional temple, depicting the colorful religious architecture of India, was completed in 2001. It is a place of worship that serves the needs of over 20000 people of Hindu faith in South Australia.

Hindus from India, Fiji, Mauritius, Guyana, Trinidad, Surinam, Malaysia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and other places settling in Adelaide initially satisfied their spiritual needs by holding regular satsangs (spiritual gatherings) in the houses of different devotees. This practice continued for some years. As the population of people of Hindu faith increased, senior members of the Adelaide’s Hindu Community formed the Hindu Society of South Australia. In 1985, the Society decided to establish the Ganesha Temple to satisfy spiritual needs of Hindus then living in Adelaide and the future arrivals. A vacated Lutheran Church was bought for this purpose. The Society chose Lord Ganesha, the Vighnaharta, the remover of obstacles, as the main deity because Lord Ganesha is acceptable form of God to Hindus belonging to different sects within Hinduism. Initially, the worship was carried out in front of a Lord Ganesha’s picture, which still hangs in the front-half of the current temple building.
In July 1986, a granite statue of Lord Ganesha was brought from Chennai and was dedicated in October by local Pandits. In the early days before a priest was employed a few members volunteered to open the temple daily in the evenings and perform a puja and read from scriptures. Later, the Members of the Hindu Society were able to find a priest from Malaysia who was willing to work as a full-time priest. He however left in 1988. The present Chief Priest Sri Sriskandarajah Kurukkal started working as a permanent priest in 1989.

As the Hindu population of Adelaide continued to increase, the Executive Committee of the Society felt the need to expand the temple building. Consequently, a piece of land adjoining the temple was acquired in 1991. Following extensive planning and community consultation, the building work finally started in 1999. Sculptors and architects well-versed with designing Hindu temples were invited from India to undertake work on building a temple depicting a traditional Hindu architecture. Maha Kumbhabhishegam was held in November 2000. The Ganesha Temple was finally opened by the then Premier of South Australia Mr. John Olsen in 2001.

The Ganesha temple regularly hosts pujas and religious functions and caters to spiritual needs of the Hindus of Adelaide. The temple also provides a platform to meet and be at home while away from home for the students visiting South Australia to undertake higher education. Many friendships have been formed and the temple functions as temples in India. The Ganesha Temple has not only become a very important place in the lives of Hindus of Adelaide but also a centre for promoting social and cultural harmony.

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Place Categories: Hindu TemplesPlace Tags: Ganapati, Ganesh and Vinayagar

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