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20 January 2017

Our Third Form Explore Hinduism

On Thursday Father Mark and Mrs Arliss accompanied our whole Third Form on their annual religious studies trip to the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in London. This is Europe's first traditional Hindu temple, was designed and constructed entirely according to ancient Vedic architectural texts, using no structural steel.

Almost 5,000 tonnes of Bulgarian limestone and Italian Carrara marble were shipped to India, hand carved by 1,500 skilled artisans, and then shipped to London to be assembled like a giant jigsaw puzzle.

Our visit began with a prayer service led by the resident monks. Pupils then spent the morning in the permanent exhibition, learning about the values and wisdom of the Hindu faith, beginning with the great symbol of Hinduism, "Aum". Aum is the divine sound, the first sound of creation, from which life emanated. Its chanting generates creative energy, in all forms of existence, in all states of mind.

These annual visits are important, not only because our pupils learn to respect and understand the beliefs of others, but also because of the establishment of, and our strong links with, our recently-opened partner school, King's College India.

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