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Zed lauds efforts of raising Hindu temple in Central Illinois



rajan-zed-picture-2011-ii-150x150-7501439-4708374Champaign, Ill., will reportedly have a new Hindu temple before year end.

An application for a construction permit for the Hindu Temple and Cultural Center of Central Illinois in Champaign has reportedly been submitted, and the Hindu Temple and Cultural Society of Central Illinois behind it says it will celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi, which falls on Sept. 19 this year, in the newly built temple.

Meanwhile, Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Reno yesterday, applauded the efforts of the temple project leaders and Champaign and surrounding area community to realize this wonderful Hindu temple.

Zed, who is president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, further said that it was important to pass on Hindu spirituality, concepts and traditions to coming generations amidst so many distractions in the consumerist society and hoped that this temple would focus in this direction. Zed stressed that instead of running after materialism we should focus on inner search and realization of Self and work toward achieving moksh (liberation), which was the goal of Hinduism.

To be constructed in two phases complete with gopurams, this temple will reportedly cost $1.7 million on a 40-acre plot which will also include soybean and corn fields. Nearby temples are in Peoria, Lemont and Aurora, all over 100 miles away, and currently the events are held at Hindu homes, Urbana Civic Center or outdoors on the open land the society owns. After about five years of fundraising efforts, its construction is expected to start next month and it needs to raise about $200,000 by May’s end, reports suggest.

HTCSCI sees this temple, originally conceived in June 2002, “as an investment for the sake of future generations.” It is organizing Sri Sita Rama Kalyanam in Urbana Civic Center on March 31. Besides regular worship services, the new temple will also offer language and dance classes. Kirankumar Topudurti and Pradeep Khanna are president and vice president respectively, of HTCSCI.

Hinduism is the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents.

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