Devotion and Temples in India - a crying need for rationalization
Devotion And Temples In India - A Crying Need For Rationalization. India after independence - particularly after the emergence of TV and Internet - got a syndrome called building temples, churches, masques.
India after independence - particularly after the emergence of TV and Internet - got a syndrome called building temples, churches, masques. While the number of temples in the country is more the actual land owned by them is less when compared to land owned by the Churches in India. The focus of this article is to understand the psychology of building tiny temples in the middle, corner and entrance of highly congested streets. Why do people indulge in building temples?
Temples are part of our culture and life.
Each village in India has got its main temple.
Temples during pre-independence period are big and spacious so that they can accommodate thousands of people to witness the temple rituals / functions. Many old temples do have Pravachana Mandapa (an elevated and sheltered place for pandits to deliver spiritual discourses. Going to temple is a part of life in all the villages. It is not merely going to temple to have the glimpse of the Main Deity and receive prasada, spending some time in the temple adds so much peace to the common man. Thus temple going has become an integral part of the life. With the emergence of small, medium and big towns; and the cities that are grown mostly with no plan and provision for a temple, park, school with play ground, library etc., the association of residents in various localities of these towns started building temples in their own manner so that they can have easy access to the temple and continue their habit. This led to the new practice of bulding temples not in accordance with the relevant temple architecture and norms (Aagama) Today we see more number of modern temples that actually outnumber the temples built as per their respective Aagama.
Those believe in Sanathana Dharma and appreciate the significance of temple in our daily life must join the movement to stop building temples without considering the Aagama Texts. This is the first step. The Municipal Authorities must allow the construction of temples on a specified area of land in accordance with the specific Aagama that is relevant to the main deity . The cooperative associations of residents must take a decision to relocate the deities in existing small temples that are built haphazardly to precincts of the nearby big temples. Indians who believe in Sanathana Dharma shall start this as a movement and ensure that no temple is built in a manner that insults the very purpose of building it.
We also find the idols just kept in open places and some devotees clean them and garland them:
Once we clear this mess of so called temples in our streets, we shall identify a place in each locality to build a temple as per the temple building science handed over to us by our ancient Learned Men. Here are some of the questions that we must put to ourselves so that we can better appreciate the need for the removal of these tiny unscientific temples:
The practices of visiting a temple can not be observed in the modern temples that are built in a small area say 5x5 sq feet. These practices include doing a pradakshina, sitting calmly after the darshan etc.
The deity installation is not done as per Shastra and yet we offer prayers to it
The deity is subjected to dust, foul smell, etc and is this the way that we treat our God?
Many non-believers belittle our way of devotion as a mad practice and do we want to confirm this by continuing our way of building temples the way we do now?
Instead of visiting such tiny temples that are very small when compared to the Puja Room in many flats are we not getting a better feeling in our Puja Room itself?
Is this the way we project our devotion to Gods?
Is this way we show our devotion to our Gods?
Is this the way to allow the milk offered to Lord Shiva to flow into nearby drain?
Do we like building a tiny temple beside a drainage or on the drainage?
Hope this helps many upcoming projects of building temples necessitate a review and protect our dignity as seekers in Sanathana Dharma. Our concept of God and our devotion towards Him is demonstrated by the ways and methods we adopt to show. The current state of affairs with respect to catering to the devotional needs of the people are not at all healthy and acceptable.
Some action steps by all the devotees:
Do not patronize the temples built against the Agama.
Do not donate for functions
Use your Puja space in your flat or house
Know that God is Cleanliness
Know and make others aware that building such tiny temples in ugly places is not real devotion
Support relocating the deity to the premises of a nearby bigger temple
Write to Municipal Authorities and Religious / Temple Associations to stop this unhealthy practice
If you are an advocate file a PIL to rationalize the Temples built haphazardly in the country
Move public agencies like Roads and Buildings and NHAI to remove temples built on Roads.
Remember to focus only on Hindu Temples built against the Agama Sashtra do not extend this logic to other religions. Once we clear our own mess the others will follow us automatically.
Please share this - if you believe in Sanathana Dharma and its natural glory - with all your friends in social networks etc.,