The Lotus Temple is known as the Baháʼí House of Worship or Mashriqu-l-Adhkár. It is one of eleven Baháʼí Houses of Worship built around the world by members of The Baha’i Faith as places to worship God. It is located in New Delhi, India and known for its flower-like shape which makes it one of the famous tourist attraction of the city.
Here is a list of some incredible and amazing facts about Lotus Temple which will surely blow your mind!
Fact #1 The Bahá’í Faith is a monotheistic religion which emphasizes the spiritual unity of all humankind and is one of the world’s youngest religions, founded in Iran by Baha’u’llah in the 19th century.
Fact #2 The Lotus Temple is open to all, regardless of religion, sex or caste. It emphasizes the universality of all religions. The sacred writings of not only the Baháʼí faith but also other religions can be read or chanted, regardless of language. Reading nonscriptural texts, delivering sermons or lectures, or fund-raising are forbidden. Musical renditions of readings and prayers can be sung by choirs, but no musical instruments can be played inside.
Fact #3 Architecture of Lotus Temple is designed by an Iranian architect Fariborz Sahba. He was approached in 1976 to design the Lotus Temple and later he oversaw the construction of the Lotus Temple. The structural design was undertaken by Flint and Neill a UK based firm and the construction was done by Larsen & Toubro Limited at a cost of $10 million.
Fact #4 Architectural style of Lotus Temple is Expressionist and it derives its name from its design.
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Fact #5 The major part of the funds to buy the land for temple was donated by a Pakistani man Ardishír Rustampúr from Hyderabad, Sindh, who gave his entire life savings for this purpose in 1953.
Fact #6 Lotus Temple is surrounded by nine ponds and the gardens, the total property of temple comprises 26 acres (105,000 m²; 10.5 ha).
Fact #7 The Lotus Temple building is made up of 27 free-standing marble-clad “petals” arranged in clusters of three to form nine sides. It has nine doors opening onto a central hall which has a height of slightly over 34.27 metres. The central hall has a capacity of 2,500 people.
Fact #8 The surface of the House of Worship is made of white marble which was sourced from Penteli mountain in Greece, the very same from which many ancient monuments and other Bahá’í Houses of Worship are built.
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Fact #9 All around the Lotus Temple are walkways with beautiful curved railing, bridges and stairs that surround the nine pools representing the floating leaves of the lotus. It is said that more than 10, 000 different sizes of marbles were used to build the whole structure of Lotus Temple.
Fact #10 Though all the other Bahá’í Houses of Worship have a characteristic central dome, the Lotus Temple in Delhi does not have this architectural dome.
Fact #11 A portion of the construction budget was saved and used to build a greenhouse to study indigenous plants and flowers that would be appropriate for use on the site.
Fact #12 Lotus Temple is the first temple in Delhi to use solar power. Of the temple’s total electricity use of 500 kilowatts (kW), 120 kW is provided by solar power generated by solar panels on the building. This saves the temple 120,000 rupees per month.
Fact #13 The Baháʼí House of Worship in Delhi was completed on 13 November 1986 and was opened for public worship on 24 December 1986.
Fact #14 The Lotus Temple in Delhi is one of the eleven Houses of worship that follow Baháʼí religion across the globe. The other centres are at Ashgabat, Turkmenistan (The first Baháʼí House of Worship, built in the city of Ashgabat, then ruled by Russia and now the capital of Turkmenistan, it has been destroyed), Wilmette, Illinois, U.S., Kampala, Uganda (Mother Temple of Africa), Sydney (Ingleside), New South Wales, Australia, Hofheim-Langenhain, Germany, Panama City, Panama, Tiapapata, Samoa, Santiago, Chile, Battambang, Cambodia (the first local House of Worship to be completed), Agua Azul, Colombia.
Fact #15 As the Baháʼí religion does not follow the worship of any idol or image, there are no photographs, idols or statues within the temple,
Fact #16 By late 2001, it had attracted more than 70 million visitors, making it one of the most visited buildings in the world. According to the government of India, it had received over 100 million visitors by April 2014
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Fact #17 The Temple has received a wide range of attention in professional architectural, fine art, religious, governmental, and other venues.
Fact #18 The most visited building in the world,” according to a 2001 CNN report.
Fact #19 The most visited building in India, surpassing even the Taj Mahal with some 4.5 million visitors a year,” according to a 2003 article in One Country, a publication of the U.S. Baháʼí community.
Fact #20 The most visited religious building in the world,” according to Guinness World Records, 2001.