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Huge 4.5m Lord Shiva statue unveiled near Sydney
A huge 4.5m-high white marble statue of Hindu Lord Shiva has been consecrated and unveiled in Minto, a suburb of Sydney (Australia). Shipped from Varanasi (India), it was mounted on a concrete pedestal with the help of a crane at the Hindu temple Mukti Gupteshwar Mandir, which is claimed to be the world's first human built underground cave temple whose tagline is "Home Of The 13th Jyotirlingham". This statue is said to be fitted with seven colored LED lights, with colors changing every minute.
This Hindu temple has 1128 small temples inside it. Its ten-meter deep vault in the sanctum contains two million handwritten notes, each saying "Om Namah Shivaya", from devotees around the world. It possesses water from 81 rivers, including major rivers from Australia, and from five oceans. Total cost of this temple project to date is said to be around five million Australian dollars.


Meanwhile, distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, commended efforts of temple management and area community for realizing this 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 Australian 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.


Open seven days a week, this temple conducts poojas for 16 sanskaras with Vedic rituals and mundan ceremony (first haircut of the child); offers palm reading; prepares horoscope; runs yoga, meditation, dance and Hindi classes; celebrates Hindu festivals; organizes Mata-ki-Chowki, cultural events, Hanuman Chalisa recital, bhajans and parvachan; and is wedding venue. Its weekly Gurukul School for children teaches Sanskrit, Hinduism, Hindi, yoga, meditation, devotional dance and prayers. Prem Misra is temple coordinator.


Hinduism is the oldest and third largest religion in the world with about one billion adherents. In Hinduism, Lord Shiva, along with Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu, forms the great triad of Hindu deities. Minto, established in 1882 and known for producing Rugby league players, was originally home to the Tharawal people.
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