A magnificent $3-million Hindu Temple in The Woodlands (Texas, USA), which reportedly took about six years to complete, is celebrating Prathishta Mahotsavam and Kumbhabishekham from June 17 to 19, 2011.
These elaborate celebrations at Hindu Temple of The Woodlands, whose tagline is “A center for culture and devotion”, include Vishwaksena Aaradhana, Ganapathi Puja, bhajans, kirtans, Deepa Prajwalana, Anugyan, Vaastu Puja, Mrut Sangrahanam, Vaastu Homam, Ankurarpanam, Raksha Bandhanam, Kalasha Sthapana, Chathursthana Archana, Agni Sthapana, Shayyadhivasam, Venkateswara Suprabhatam, homams, Cow Puja, Vimana Kalasha Puja and Sthapana, Netra Unmeelanam, Ratnadhivasam, Yantra Sthapana, Bimba Sthapana, Ashta Bandhana, Punyahavachanam, Nadi Sandhanam, Mahalakshmi Puja, Deepa Sthapanam, Shodhasanyasam, Mata-ki-Chowki, Vimana Kalasha Yatraa Daanam, Vimana Kumbhabhishekam, Praana Pratishta Homam, Praana Pratishta for Murthies, Maha Poornahuthi, Pradhana Kumbha Yatraa Daanam, Maha Abhishekam for Murthies, Maha Prokshanam, Kumbhabhishekam, Deepa Aradhana, Theertham, Kalyanothsavam, Dandiya Raas, etc.
Idols of Lord Ganesha, Lord Venkateswara, and Lord Shiva are being installed during these ceremonies using Hindu rituals, as prescribed in the ancient Agama Shastras. Lakshmi and Radha-Krishna will reportedly be installed in the coming months. Earlier, area Hindus had to drive about 1.5 hours to Sugar Land or Pearland for religious needs.
This 8.35 acre Temple claims to preserve “the ancient spiritual and cultural heritage of India in a contemporary setting” and will have yagna facilities, classroom and library space, a large lobby and a kitchen.
Meanwhile, Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, applauded efforts of Temple management and The Woodlands and surrounding area community for this wonderful Hindu temple complex.
Rajan Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, further said that it was important to pass on Hindu spirituality, concepts and traditions to coming generations amidst so many distractions in the consumerist society and hoped that this new temple would help in this direction. Zed stressed that instead of running after materialism; we should focus on inner search and realization of self and work towards achieving moksh (liberation), which was the goal of Hinduism.
Hindu Temple of The Woodlands plans to offer comprehensive puja (worship) services of various deities; celebrations of various festivals; presentations/discussions on Eastern philosophy/Vedanta; weekly classes on Indian languages, arts and scriptures; health care; counseling; etc. Shashi Bellur is the Board Chairperson, Nimish Dhuldhoya is Executive Committee President, and M.M. Chakrapani Bhattacharya is the priest.
The Woodlands is a master-planned community within the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area of Texas which has won a Special Award for Excellence from the Urban Land Institute. Notable people associated with The Woodlands include NFL players Danny Amendola and Gerald Irons, porn star Teagan Presley, country musician Jack Ingram, rapper Chamillionare, wrestlers Torrie Wilson and Nick Mitchell, basketball player Lance Blanks, and Olympic gold medalist Laura Wilkinson. Bruce Tough and Lloyd Matthews are Chairman and Vice Chairman respectively of the Township Board, while Don Norrell is the President.
Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents.