Golden Temple has been awarded the “Most Visited Place of the World” by “World Book of Records”, a London based organization that catalogs and verifies World Records.
There are many places on this planet which are so beautiful that we fail to find the right words to admire. Their beauty is beyond any word that you can find in dictionary. One of such places is the pious “Harmandir Sahib” in Amritsar which is famous as “Golden Temple”. The place is one of the holiest and a pilgrimage site of Sikh Religion. It is the most sacred of Sikh Shrines. This place is a must visit place for every one. Its beauty can only be admired when you see the place with your own eyes. The temple is Majestic. One must visit the place in night. It is open till 11 pm and the light falling on the golden structure makes it mesmerizing.
The temple is situated in between the “Sarovar” (Pond). The work on this water body was started by Guru Amar Das, the third Sikh Guru in the year 1570 and was completed by Guru Ram Das in the year 1578. It came to be known as “Amrit Sarovar” which translate to “Pond of Nectar” and the city that flourished around the Sarovar came to be known as “Amritsar”. Harmandir Sahib was built in this water body and is gilded by 750 kgs of pure Gold. The work on temple was started by fifth sikh Guru “Guru Arjan Dev Ji” in the year 1588 AD. The temple was completed in 3 years of time. The foundation stone of the temple was laid by a sufi saint “Mian Mir”. The literal meaning of “Sri Harmandir Sahib” is “House of God”. The main temple complex is also known as “Darbar Sahib”. The water of the pond is considered holy. You can see lot of people taking a dip in it or drinking the water.
The temples of India are known for their richness of wealth and because of this they have been targeted by foreign invaders from time to time. Harmandir Sahib was also attacked by Afghan Invader “Ahmed Shah Abdali in 18th century. The temple suffered huge damage and was restored. The gilding of the temple was done in the 19th century under Maharaja Ranjit Singh jee. The pious Guru Granth Sahib is kept in the temple and is worshiped here.
Random Night Pictures of the Temple
All the activities in the temple are well organised. There is a place to keep your shoes in safe custody. You can see many volunteers and members of the Gurdwara Committee working selflessly. The love and smile on their faces and devotion towards the work which they perform is amazing. One can also donate food grains and other items at the counters. There is a 24 hours running kitchen which feeds millions of people. It is referred to as “Langar” in local language. The food served is considered to be pious and a gift of God. It is open to everyone irrespective of caste and creed or the social status. It serves more than 50000 meals daily which goes upto 100000 on the occasions of festivals. There are two dining halls with combined capacity of 5000 people. The Sikhs are known for this generosity and service towards the mankind. They consider it to be their duty to serve human beings. They have been known to organise community kitchens for various communities in areas of natural disaster and calamities not only in India but all across the world. This is what our Gurus taught us.
Day pictures of Golden Temple
The temple is close to Jallianwala Bagh. You can find many shops selling Amritsari Juttis (a kind of footwear) outside the temple. You need to cover your head while going inside the temple. The atmosphere inside the temple is peaceful and serene and is a experience in itself. Kindly donate what ever you could while visiting the same. It helps serve mankind. I with my family spend about 3 hours in the temple in the night and then went again in the morning to experience the beauty in day light.