The Mukti-Gupteshwar Mandir Society has unveiled a large statue of Lord Shiva. The height of the Statue, including the pedestal, is approximately, 4.5m.Carved from one piece white marble, the statue weighs 3.5 tonnes. A special crane was used to lift the statue onto a specially constructed concrete pedestal.
The statue of Lord Shiva has four arms, rear two arms carrying a trident and a small drum. Shiva is wearing a snake and prayer beads all carved from the same piece of marble.
This form of Lord Shiva is known as the provider of salvation and freedom from cycle of birth and rebirth to devotees. The statue is fitted with seven coloured LED lights and is striking at night, with colours changing every minute over the seven colours for aseven minute cycle.
A ceremony has been conducted which has brought the sacred image to life. There are two ways to understand the ceremony. The first is as a contractbetween the Deity and devotees. The Deity agrees to descend into the sacred image, and the devotee agrees to care for the Deity in the form of service to the community.The ceremony causes the Deity to awaken within the stone.
The other view is more theological. By definition, God is all pervading and omnipresent and so breath does not need to be established within the statue because God is already there! On this view, the purpose of the ceremony is to awaken the minds of devotees to the presence of divinity within the sacred image. At the start of the ceremony people see only stonebut by the end they see God. The real installation takes place not on the stone but in the minds of the participants.
Lord Shiva is an exciting newcomer to the attractions of the Campbelltown-Macarthur region, and a great example of cultural enrichment brought by Australians of the Hindu faith.