Golden temple (harmandir sahib), Amritsar
Sri Harmandir Sahib popularly known as The Golden Temple( Adobe of God) or Darbar Sahib is a gurudwara located in the center of the city Amritsar, Punjab. It is the holiest gurudwara and an important pilgrimage site of Sikhism. It is not just a central religious place of the Sikhs, but also a symbol of human, brotherhood and equality. People of all caste creed or race can seek spiritual solace and religious fulfilment without any hindrance.
It also represents the distinct identity, glory and heritage of the Sikhs. To Note down the philosophy, ideology the inner and other beauty as well as the historical legacy of Shri Harmandir Sahib is a momentous task. It is a matter of experience rather than of a description.
As advised by Sri Guru Amar Das ji (3rd guru) Sri Guru Ram Das ji (4th guru) started the digging of Amrit Sarovar (holy tank) in 1577AD which was later on brick lined by Sri Guru Arjan Dev ji (5th Guru ) on 15 Dec 1588 and he also started construction of Golden temple.
Brief information about Golden temple
- The entire top of the Golden Temple (Harmandir Sahib) is made of pure gold, adding to the beauty of the temple.
- The temple is surrounded by a man made lake that boasts a lot of exotic fish in it. To get to the temple you will literally have to walk on water.
- The temple is entered from four different sides to show openness and acceptance.
- The temple was initially built without any gold coating. It is during the reign of Maharaja Ranjit Singh the ruler of Punjab in early 19th century that the temple went under full renovation and made into what it is today.
- Before the temple was built the first Guru of Sikhs, Guru Nanak used to meditate at the site. It was not until the fifth Guru, Guru Arjana that the temple was built.
- The man-made lake around the temple is known as Amrit Sarovar which Is translated as “ Pool of Holy Nectar”.
- The temple is considered holy such that 35% of pilgrims that visit it are From Faith’s other than Sikh.
- The langar at the golden temple serves up to to 200000 people during
special religious events. Amazingly all the food served are donations from faithful.
Places to visit near Golden Temple
1. JalianWala Bagh
Located within a distance of 1 km from the Golden Temple (, Harmandir Sahib) JalianWala Bagh is the famous public ground where the heinous act of public massacre was done by British Army. The incident took place on 13th April 1919 which was Punjabi New year day. It is on this auspicious day that British occupying forces brutally Opened fire on a peaceful mass and as a result around 379 people were left dead and around 1100 people wounded. In 1951 a memorial was established on this ground to commemorate the massacre
2. Wagah Border
It is one of the must visit places of tourist interest around Golden Temple in Amritsar. It is the only road border crossing between India and Pakistan and located at the distance of 30 km from Golden Temple. The ceremony of beating retreat and change of Guard make this place highly valued.
3. Durgiana Temple
A significant Hindu temple in Amritsar, Durgiana is around 1 and half kilometer from the Golden Temple and looks like a replica of the same. Dedicated to goddess Durga the temple was built in 1908 by Harsai Mal Kapoor. The temple complex encloses the seats of Lord Hanuman, Mata Shitla along with Lakshmi Narayan. The whole concept of Mandir is almost same as the Harmandir Sahib.
4. Maharaja Ranjit Singh Museum
Dedicated to Maharaja Ranjit Singh ‘ the lion of Punjab ‘ who freed a major part of Punjab from the shackles of Mughals, the museum is located in Lawrence Road Company Bagh of Amritsar. The museum displays the chivalric activities of the king along with artefacts associated with the greatest battles he fought with his enemies. The light and sound show creates the feel of a real war situation with the booming sound effects taking you to the past.
how to get there
The Golden Temple can be reached by road, train and air. While in Amritsar one can easily reach by taking a taxi. Other forms of local transport here are cycle rickshaws and city buses. Other cities are also well connected to the monument. Delhi is 435 km and Chandigarh is 235 km from the gurudwara. Amritsar is well connected by rail with Mumbai , Varanasi, Delhi, Kolkata and and other major cities in India. Amritsar is also properly connected by air to other parts of the country. One can easily fly from Delhi and Srinagar to Amritsar. Most of the flights are from Delhi which is an hour away. There are international Connections a well.