Harmandir Sahib, India

The Golden Temple is the informal name of Harmandir Sahib, the holiest Sikh building, located in the heart of the city of Amritsar, Punjab in northwest India. The name of “Golden Temple” is due to its gilded with fine gold coverage.

Harmandir Sahib 2

Flickr: i2n2 / Creative Commons

The Golden Temple is therefore at a low point of the city, as if to signify that naturally welcomes all disciples. It sits at the center of a “sacred basin” square 150 meters on each side , the Amrit Sarovar , this lake attracts to itself all the water , dug during the last quarter of the sixteenth century at the time of the founding of the city to which he gave his name. Access to the pool is carried out by four entrances symbolize openness to all peoples and all faiths.
It is surrounded by a vast complex comprising of Gurdwaras ( Sikh places of worship ), one of the most emblematic is the Akal Takht (or Immortal Throne ) , the langar ( mess ) where free meals are offered to pilgrims , museum, etc …

Harmandir Sahib

Flickr: i2n2 / Creative Commons

After taking a walk made ​​of white marble, it enters the heart of the temple by a marble bridge 60 meters long , the ” Bridge Guru .” To enter the enclosure, the visitor or pilgrim is invited to remove their shoes to cross a footbath and cover their heads.

Harmandir Sahib 3

Flickr: i2n2 / Creative Commons

The temple is a majestic three-storey pavilion , whose upper parts were covered with plates and gold leaf in the nineteenth century on the orders of Maharaja Ranjit Singh . The building was built with marble of different colors, inlaid mother of pearl and semi -precious stones. Terrace , adorned with four chhatri ( domed structures raised by four pillars ) , is topped by a golden dome shaped inverted lotus .
The Golden Temple houses the Sikh Holy Book , the Guru Granth Sahib , himself locked in a safe ornate . Of ” kirtan ” sacred hymns are sung continuously. Musicians play devotional music.