I visited the Lotus Temple in Delhi India and I was blown away by the outer architecture of the building, but also elated by what this temple represents. This temple is open to all faiths althrough there are no sermons allowed, no special religious events and no idols or statues, it shines as a place for self prayer to whatever your personal belief is.
Officially, the Lotus Temple of Delhi tries to remain open to any religion under the belief that there is “a oneness of God, a oneness of Religions, and the oneness of mankind”. I did not expect to have any real feelings about the inside of the Lotus Temple, no other feelings than going in and out of Buddhist temples and christian churches, but as I walked inside the Lotus Temple I found myself reflecting on what was important to me, personally. I want to help the world solve climate change. I want to be a good husband, I miss my family and hope they’re doing well.
Where is the Lotus Temple: Google Map link to the Lotus Temple
Who should go to the Lotus Temple? : People who respect other religions, people who like architecture, people who are spiritual
Who should not go to the Lotus Temple? : People who hate beautiful things, people who don’t like other religions, people who want one religion to control other people
The inside of the Lotus Temple at this early hour saw a few people in quiet prayer spread out in different areas. There are no pictures allowed in the Lotus Temple, which I believe was a great idea. You could pray and not be bothered by the tourists who just wanted to see the inside of the building.
The Architecture of Lotus Temple
The Lotus Temple, is of course, built to represent a lotus flower. The lotus flower is significant in Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism but for different reasons. It surprised me that a temple built for all religions chose an architecture that represents only 3 religions, but the sight of the Temple inspires curiosity and a desire to go there and see what is on the inside.
The Lotus Flower design, is stunning from a distance. I have never seen a building that looks like it and as a traveler I was quite happy to see something quite different from anything else I have ever seen. In addition to the unique outer design of the temple, the architect wanted to use a natural concept of using water and light to add character to the building instead of more traditional elements like statues. If you want to go on a deep dive into the architecture and the decisions that went into the design of the Lotus Temple, I recommend this worldarchitecture.org page or masterclass.com.
What is a visit to the Lotus Temple in Delhi Like?
You can see the Lotus Temple from a distance. The Temple is surrounded by a well kept garden landscape which you must walk through in order to get to the building. At first you think about how amazing the temple looks in the distance, then you have to start walking there. It’s not particularly far, but it’s not close either. We walk through the garden paths and we can appreciate the building’s architecture and the way the grounds are kept. A sharp contrast to most other tourist sites in India.
You make it to the Lotus Temple, whew! Drink some water. Now that you are up close to it, you can see how the water and light interact to make a peaceful moment just outside of the entrance. Upon entering, which is free, you might expect amazing art like in Buddhist and christian churches. No. You don’t see art, the architecture of the inside speaks for itself. It is beautiful and no pictures are allowed, but you can get a nice preview here.
Inside the temple there are a number of areas for private prayers and self reflection. Standing in this space, in the relative quiet, surrounded by worshipers is an experience to be had. So don’t miss it.