Atlanta's Mandir - Remarkable Masterpiece and Place of Paramount Piece

I've known about BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Atlanta, Georgia for a few years now as this is the largest Hindu temple outside of I...

I've known about BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Atlanta, Georgia for a few years now as this is the largest Hindu temple outside of India. But little did I realize what a beautiful place it in fact is. As I know almost nothing about Hinduism and its different branches (Swaminarayan is one of them), I can't really speak about the mandir as a spiritual place, but it definitely is divine for those who come to worship there. 

BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir is one of the six mandirs of that kind in North America. The other five are in Chicago, Illinois; Toronto, Ontario; Houston, Texas; Robbinsville, New Jersey (halfway between New York and Philadelphia) and Los Angeles, California. This one sits in a sleepy suburb of Atlanta, Lilburn, next to a tall canopy of pine and maple trees twisted with ivies and vines.
Getting there was a bit challenging as I decided to take public transit and ended up walking for 6.5 km / 4 miles from the bus stop each way. But it was worth it and not too tiring as you may think. April in Atlanta is a very warm month, yet the leaves are still young and bright green.
Mandir welcomes guests daily, but not all ceremonies are open to public.
People working there are very nice and friendly. However, it's not an attraction, but a place of worship, so each visitor has to respect the rules at the mandir such as no wearing footwear, no talking loudly and no taking pictures inside the temple.  
As you pass the gate, you will face a rather big pool with steps bringing you up the temple.
It's hard to believe but the mandir has no steel or metal pieces. It was hand-carved in India from Turkish limestone, Italian marble and Indian sandstone, shipped to the US and assembled as a giant 3D jigsaw puzzle. 
The temple is made of 34,000 separate pieces. It took 1.3 million volunteer hours but only 17 months to put them together. The mandir was inaugurated in 2007.
It's truly one of the most beautiful human-made things I've ever seen.
Even benches and security building are carved from a stone.
No pictures are allowed inside which is unfortunate as I'd love to show you how stunning the temple is inside as well. I found the next five pictures below on the BAPS official website.
A blueish lighting makes decor even more expressive. 
Everything is symmetric inside the temple, so it's a paradise for perfectionists. The most difficult from an engineering perspective and the most amazing sculpture is the central piece of a ceiling.  
I've spent at least a few minutes staring at it - so captivating. 
Even though official travel guides for Atlanta mention nothing about BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, you should definitely see it yourself as pictures do not convey the majesty of the temple.

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