Temple in Spare Bedroom Attracts 50,000 Worshippers

The queue to enter the Hindu Temple is long, people from all over the world sometimes wait for hours to enter a shrine created by Mrs. Sushila Karia and her husband Dhirajlal.

This may not be a strange sight for a temple in India, but the shrine is located in a spare bedroom of the Karias' house in Essex, England!

It has proved so popular that for the last 29 years, the house has attracted worshippers and visitors from all over Britain and across the world - 50,000 of them at the last count, and still arriving by the coachload. On particularly busy days they might wait hours in the queue for the chance to spend ten minutes in private prayer in the 9ft by 6ft spare bedroom, used as a humble study before Mr Karia came up with his brainwave.

Seventeen gods and goddesses central to the Hindu religion are represented in statue form, strategically placed in the room. They were blessed by five priests from India in a 13-day inauguration ceremony that involved carrying the statues to the nearby beach and bathing them in the sea. The blessing is designed to bring the statues alive and make them worthy of prayer.

Thus, everything a Hindu pilgrim might want is available here - peace, prayer, friendship and happiness - and of course, Mrs Karia's tea. Since suffering a bout of pneumonia, the 67-year-old part time teacher can no longer cope with preparing food and treats for everyone but guests are welcome to bring their own.

The couple created the temple because none was available locally when they moved in the 1970s from North London, where they ran a newsagents. In those days Mr Karia, an electronics engineer from Uganda, and his wife, from India, had to make a 90-mile round trip to the capital to the nearest temple. So instead, they made their own.

Paul Harris of the Daily Mail has the story: Link (Photo: Peter Lawson / Eastnews)

Previously on Neatorama: 10 Most Amazing Temples in the World

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