Wednesday, 18 December 2019
BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir...
There isn't as much to browse in the available spaces to the public as I had hoped for, but the intricate marble carvings are so magnificent in the area of worship that it is very worth the journey. It's like stepping into a space in ancient India - it's absolutely breathtaking in the mandir.
Also, there is a gift shop with books and bhakti items, a small cafeteria for food (though no place to sit and eat indoors, sadly - I had to take my lassi and pastry puff outside to eat, and it was COLD!) and a small museum which cost $5 for an adult to browse. I decided to pay the $5 to support the mandir - I won't put money into a Catholic collection plate, hating much of what the church is about, but I wanted to support this fine piece of architecture. The museum isn't much, but it was nice to go about it and learn a bit more about Hinduism.
Once inside, there is a place to store your shoes and hang your coats - being sock footed is mandatory in the mandir. The staff were quite friendly, and though it was a quiet day there, other visitors were browsing as well. I had felt the urge to go to this place today, so I decided I would finally venture out there, this having been on my Toronto bucket list of places I keep meaning to visit.
I am not sure when I will be back again, but perhaps if there is some important spiritual event, I will return for that. I am glad I did go - it was worth it to see that marble work in person.