Vellore’s Golden Temple: Guru’s in India

by Brandi Moore on April 16, 2010

golden temple vellore india

About 150km from Chennai a Golden Temple was recently constructed right outside of Vellore.  The temple was created by faith in a Guru called Sri Sakthi Amma who is only about 30 years old and believed to be a protector from Kali Yuga or the Dark Age which most Indians believe the world is currently experiencing.

Hinduism has an aspect of time where it is believe that the Indian society goes through periods of light and darkness.  Darkness is the current experience where people are far away from god.  The temple was built with the intention of bringing light and happiness to people as a way to cope with the complexities living in a time of darkness.

A Guru is someone who is believed to be all knowing and to be the one who answers life’s questions.  We do not have this concept in American society likely because of our preferences for uncertainty(Hofstede: the extent to which people need to control uncertainty), while the US and India have similar scores, IndiaThink believes that India’s uncertainty preferences are two fold with a stronger need to control certainty with regard for the practices around Hinduism.  Americans are schooled to constantly question teachers and are graded on their ability to do so starting from a very young age.  It would be very difficult to accept a teacher as all knowing without question and judgement as a Guru relationship expects.

There is no question that there is strong believe in Sri Sakthi Amma’s position and duty: the Golden temple cost at least $160M to build and is made of plated gold.  The funds arrived from donations.  The experience is hard to convey in words but those around me who believe brought bags of limes for offering and paid extra to pray with the Guru’s followers.  There are positive messages all around the star, which is the shape of the walkway to the temple in an effort to explain modern life and how to cope with its challenges.  His messages must be powerful as thousands make the pilgrimage to the temple every day.

(picture credit  trulydotnet.files.wordpress.com)

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