The Arulmigu Sri Rajakaliamman Glass Temple For those of you with a curiosity for faith, culture and traditions, this should be on your bucket list. The Arulmigu Sri Rajakaliamman Glass Temple is a Hindu temple in Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia. Not far from where I was teaching at the time. It started in 1922 as a simple shelter on land presented by the Sultan of Johor. But in 1991, Guru Bhagawan Sittar inherited the administration of the temple from his father and committed to rebuilding the temple. In spite of difficulties and challenges, the temple was officially reopened in 1996. The Guru's inspiration for glass came from a trip he had taken to Bangkok. From a tuk-tuk, his eyes caught a brilliant light like diamonds from 2 kilometers away and the driver told him that it was a "wat" (temple). On inspection, Guru was overwhelmed with joy on how the temple shone in the sunlight. The Glass temple, as it is fondly known, embodies the essence of the Hindu faith. The grace and exquisite beauty of its layout leaves worshippers and tourists in awe. Side by side. Light from crystal chandeliers reflects on doors, pillars, walls and ceilings in a bright blaze that is quite blinding, initially. Visitors are encouraged not to use flash photography for obvious reasons. At least 90 per cent of the temple is embellished by a mosaic of 300,000 pieces of red, blue, yellow, green, purple and white glass. Roof ,floor and wall glow among embellished symbols of Hinduism. The centerpiece in the Athma Lingam sanctuary is a lotus for Shiva, on which devotees can pour rose water and perform their prayers. This special sanctuary is adorned with walls that are fully covered with 300,000 mukni Rudraksha beads from Nepal. Each Rudraksha bead was embedded in the walls with a chanted prayer. There are 10 gold sculptures close to the ceiling. Of the two figures on the left, one appears to be lying down and another crawling, while one on the far right seems to be reclining too. These sculptures portray the cycle of life, from birth to death. Ten white marble statues each standing 1.20m tall, represent the messengers of God. Among them are Gautama Buddha, Guru Nanak Dev Ji, Sai Baba, Mother Teresa and Jesus Christ. After I had marvelled at this wonder, literally all around me and partook of its serenity, a priest - clad in humble robes offered me "Prasad" (a devotional offering made to a god, typically consisting of food that is later shared among devotees), the offering was sweet porridge or "Kada" and I was thrilled and humbled that I could experience all this.

Posted by Saffa at 2022-07-27 03:55:34 UTC