Today, though most people
are devout and visit holy places and temples, there is still no
peace in society. Our Bhakthi is always related to the attainment
of material pleasures and the fulfillment of one’s personal
needs; therefore we cannot get any benefit from such Bhakthi.
Humanity is the only living kind in the world which attains ‘Moksha’
(release from cycle of existence). Man or woman, after getting a
good education and a job, earns money, gives charity to the less
privileged and donates some of his or her wealth to noble causes.
After earning money, does he or she go the next stage which is earning
the love of the people through money (message is enshrined in Shastra
9)? The answer is no: they remain in Loukika. This is why people
do not get peace of mind. They do not have the inclination to give
charity or philanthropy. So, whatever Bhakthi they have is not enough.
They are not interested in charity, but only in doubling their income.
Sripuram Mahalakshmi Temple
Under these circumstances, one should realize that Dharma (the
righteous path) alone is the path to Bhakthi. To follow Dharma in
the form of Charity, one needs money. The money that one earns is
for doing this Dharma to others. One should feel happy to do Dharma
and seeing others happy. Love is the foundation for Dharma. One
gets Santhosham (happiness) by obtaining benefits for oneself; but
one gets Anandam (joy) only by making others happy.
At present, we are doing so many things in the name of Bhakthi
due to our ignorance or absence of Gnana (wisdom). What man needs
today is Gnana. If we give Gnana in the form of a book, people would
not read it, especially when told that the book would give them
Gnana. So, we want to give Gnana through Loukkia. This is akin to
a mother giving to her sick child a bitter pill coated with sweetness.
By doing this two purposes are served; the child is made happy by
getting the sweet taste and the mother is satisfied that she has
given the child the medicine to cure the illness. This, in essence,
is the concept of the Spiritual Park.
Eco-Pond in Sripuram
People generally derive happiness in visiting and seeing anything
that is beautiful. The Spiritual Park aims at imparting Gnana to
the people through the same media of a park, films and theatre productions.
Spirituality is not easily understood. As a first step, we propose
to teach spirituality through the Spiritual Park. This is the main
reason for the ‘Sripuram.’ ‘Sri’ means Mahalakshmi
or Sakthi while ‘Puram’ denotes a living place.
Man commits sins due to the lack of wisdom, the lack of wealth
and the lack of strength. We pray to Goddess Saraswathi for wisdom,
Goddess Lakshmi for wealth and prosperity and Goddess Durga for
strength. So we have called the project Sripuram, meaning a source
of wisdom, prosperity and strength which man needs to take him on
the righteous path.
Under this project, we propose to construct a Golden Temple on
the heart of 25 acres of land for Goddess Mahalakshmi. This temple
could be reached through a spiral pathway climbing upwards. Unlike
other temples which have golden Kavasams (shields) for the Lord,
golden Gopurams (towers) or a golden shrine, the Mahalakshmi temple,
including the steps leading to the temple, the Mahamandapam, the
Ardha Mandapam, the Garba Graha (sanctum sanctorum), the Prakaram,
the Vimanam, the pillars and the upper storey all would be fully
covered with gold. One could reach the temple on entering the third
round of the spiral pathway.
This pathway would be lined with Cuddapah stone boards displaying
the ‘golden words’ or the famous sayings of spiritual
leaders on both sides. There would be a total of 1000 golden words
around the park. These boards were planned and designed to enable
people to see, know and assimilate knowledge via the famous sayings
by great men. The boards would contain the ‘Golden Words’
said not only by Hindu leaders, savants and Gods, but also the scholars
and prophets of other religions. This imparts a secular character
to the whole project which is aimed at drawing people towards spirituality
and for the acceptance of people of all religions. There are great
messages in all religions and the park would include the sayings
from all of them.
Waterfall in Sripuram
The Sripuram would have flowering plants to give mental solace
to the people. From beginning to end, the park would have features
disseminating information to the visitors on righteousness, the
do's and don’ts of life, the purpose of life, information
about temples, the Vedas, and the true essence of Gnana.
You may ask why a golden temple? Why should we spend so much money
on Loukika? If we only say good things, people may not be interested
and would not get the message. If we have a unique attraction, even
if the people do not want to come for Gnana or to pray, they would
definitely come to admire the grand spectacle of a golden temple.
This would be the centre of attraction for them because there is
no such temple anywhere else. Just as the mother gives her sick
child a bitter pill with a sweetened coating, we show the people
the inner temple of Bhakthi and Dharma couched in the Loukika of
the golden temple. The gold in the temple will act as a force of
gravity that would attract the people to it.
After visiting the spiritual park, one would go back as an enlightened
individual endowed with divine blessings, Gnana and peace of mind.
Books would make people read them, but they will not retain what
they've learnt. Here in the spiritual park, people would get peace
of mind quickly. The park would have a conductive atmosphere for
attaining Bhakthi and acquiring divine wisdom. People would feast
their eyes on the beautiful park with all its flowers, greenery
and water and the beauty would make them forget their worldly problems
and acquire mental peace.
The park would also have many fruit trees and herbal plants. It
would have spiritual library, a cultural development centre, meditation
hall and an amphitheatre where people could hear or speak on subjects
of their choices. These features are good to attract the adults.
But how do you attract children towards spirituality? Is Gnana enough
for them? Children cannot understand the spiritual concepts. So
for the children there would be a children’s park, a birds
sanctuary, an aquarium and a spiritually-oriented computer centre.
The computer centre would have computer games where children would
be asked questions based on epics and other spiritual stories and
asked to pick the right answer. To give an example, one question
may be ‘Why did Ravana die?’ By knowing the answer,
children would learn about the Ramayana and the Dharmic way of life.
Slowly, they would be oriented towards the Dharmic or righteous
path in life. Prizes such as biscuits and chocolates would be given
to the winners of the games. A vegetarian canteen is also proposed
on the premises. All these features are under construction.
The Beautiful Landscape of Sripuram's Eco-Pond