Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Gadhada
Location: The Hindu shrine ‘Shri Swaminarayan Mandir’ is situated in Gadhada, Gujarat of India.
Presiding deity: Gopinathji Maharaj, Harikrishna Maharaj
Creator of the shrine: Swaminarayan
Date of its construction: 9th October, 1828
Description of the temple:
- Number of storey and domes: This shrine was the dream of Swaminarayan who executed his dream-project and put his heart and soul for carving this shrine’s structure. This temple has two storey and three domes which illustrate the enticement of the shrine with the enchanting view of peculiar art of carving.
- Plinth/ footstall: The spacious square-shaped plinth of the shrine is constructed relatively high as compare to the leveled ground.
- Assembly hall: Assembly hall, dharmashalas and Kitchen are built under the prime concern of pilgrims since they need a spacious solemn sanctum where they can meet divinity.
- Figurines/ idols: Unlike idols of traditional Hindu deities, there are numerous deities’ figurines which stand for mesmerizing the souls of pious devotees through their glimpse. In the mid part of the shrine, the idols of Gopinath & Harikrishna are erected while the west side of it is bedecked with the figurines of Dharma, Bhakti and Vasudeva . The remaining east side of it is a nook chosen for scattering the aroma of reverence by installing the idols of Revti-Baldevji, Shri-Krishna and Suryanarayan.
- Idol of Swaminarayan: Every corner of this shrine seems narrating the memoirs of admirable deity ‘Swaminarayan’ whose idol is also placed in the temple.
- Ghanshyam’s sculpture: The stony image of Ghanshyam is erected northwards that manifests as conveying the message of devotion while walking through the passage to the inner compound of this temple.
- Prasadi temple: Museum is decided as the place for exhibiting the prasadi items of the temple.
- Chamber of Vasudeva: A neem tree and a chamber of Vasudeva in the south part of this temple have become a spot to be thronged by the pilgrims since Swaminaraya used to preach there that are scripted in the Vachnamrut scripture. The original specimen of the court of Dada khachar is kept secured there also.
- Akshar Ordi temple & Gangajalio well: The backdrop of this shrine, which is few miles away from the main shrine, has another abode of god, i.e. Akshar Ordi temple alongside there is a water source called ‘Gangajalio well’ also.
- Lakshmiwadi: It is the holy place having shed of just a dome where the last ritual, i.e. the funeral, of Swaminarayan took place and his mortal remains are kept in rest there.
- A solemn place of Nishkulanand Swami: It is the place located just few steps ahead of Lakshmiwadi where the palanquin for the last ride of Swaminarayan’s life was made.
- Ghela River: This is that sacred river-side where respectable Swaminarayan used to visit for his routine bath.
- Prasadi river-beds: The river beds named as Narayan Dharo and Sahasra Dharo were the sites where his feet frequently marched.
- Nearby shrines: Other shrines namely Neelkanth and Hanuman are also adding more grace to the place behind the Ghela River.
- Golden spires: The temple adored with the golden spires is the first of its own class that is revamped in Gujarat in May, 2012 and the cost of its revamping with gold leaf was worth 21 crore.