Universal Temple of Sri Ramakrishna is a magnificent shrine situated at Mylapore
, in Chennai
. The temple is dedicated to Ramakrishna Paramahamsa
, one of the great religious leaders of India.. Housed in the Sri Ramakrishna Math, the temple is the hub of all activities of the Math.
A unique feature of the temple is that anyone who wants to enter the temple can do so irrespective of religion, color, creed or sex. The devotees who visit the shrine can take part in the worship, bhajan, aarti and also engage themselves in silent prayer or meditation.
The guidelines for building the Universal Temple were laid down by Swami Vivekananda - a great disciple of Ramakrishna Paramahamsa. The temple was build keeping in mind that it must help the devotees to advance spiritually for realizing the truth with no hatred towards other faiths. To make this possible the architectural elements and motifs found in Hindu, Buddhist and Jain temples and the churches and cathedrals of Europe are synthesized in this Universal Temple.
The temple has an imposing 60 ft wide entrance gateway designed in pure Vijayanagara Style . The forecourt of the temple is similar to the ones found in front of the monuments of Mughals. The prayer hall of the temple is about 10 ft high from the ground level. The space below the prayer hall and other parts of the temple floor is used as auditorium and rooms for shrine purpose.
This auditorium of the temple is named after Swami Ramakrishnananda, a direct disciple of Sri Ramakrishna and the founder of Chennai Math. The auditorium regularly hosts for spiritual talks, bhajans and other programs.