A Hindu Sanctuary on the Jewel of the Indian Ocean
A Mystical Vision
On An Island Paradise
The genius behind the Spiritual Park was Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami (1927-2001), beloved Gurudeva to thousands of devotees, a spiritual giant who knew no challenge too great to meet, no obstacle too imposing to overcome, no hurt too deep to assuage, no detail too insignificant to address. He was called to Mauritius in 1981, by elders who sought his help in strengthening the religion of their forefathers and to engage the children. He spent months visiting all corners of the island, and immediately felt a love for Mauritians. He returned, again and again, finally deciding to establish a center here.
The Spiritual Park started with a vision. Gurudeva shared: "In 1986 I had a powerful vision of Lord Ganesha while I was here in Mauritius looking for property for Saiva Siddhanta Church. Lord Ganesha was walking from His temple attended by two priests. He was about to take a bath in the beautiful Indian Ocean in the country of Mauritius where the river meets the sea. I was standing in the water with several sharks swimming around me. Lord Ganesha, accompanied by two priests, looked at me and said, 'Just rub some oil on their noses and they will not harm you.' The vision led me directly to this special land by the Rempart River and its lagoon. The Spiritual Park is a fulfillment of that vision (illustrated below). I see it combining environmental and architectural beauty that will give spiritual peace and mystical knowledge to visitors for many generations in the future. It is destined to become a pilgrimage site of great renown in the Indian Ocean area. Hindus from Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Africa and India, will come here."
In that same year Gurudeva acquired this riverside property as a monastery and converted the chalet-style bungalow on the west side into a monastic residence, where his monks lived and served. A few years later, he dedicated six acres of his Saiva Dharmasala as a Spiritual Park. In 1999 he traveled to Mauritius to publicly inaugurate his Spiritual Park as a gift to the island nation.
Through his 50 years of ministry, Gurudeva inspired thousands of people of all walks of life to change their habits and routines, to become more deeply religious, to follow a path of sadhana for spiritual evolution and character-building. He placed great emphasis on devotion to the Hindu Gods, who, through holy places such as the Spiritual Park, can commune with humankind, send blessings, guide, uplift and protect. To him, the Gods were good friends; he saw them and communed with them. It was this perception of the reality of the inner worlds that he sought to solidify and glorify at his Spiritual Park by building a sanctified abode for Lord Ganesha. Whenever he visited Mauritius, Gurudeva would boldly speak of the need for all Hindus to work more closely together, which he called "Hindu solidarity." He spoke out his Saiva Siddhanta teachings on the island, seeking to uplift sincere devotees and give them the opportunity to deepen their commitment to Hinduism and to pass their ancient religion of love and peace on to the next generation. He was deeply interested in religious training for children.
Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami. Learn more about
Bodhinatha here, at his home page.
Gurudeva's successor, Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, affectionately known as "Bodhinatha" is carrying on Gurudeva mission in a very powerful way. You can look forward to meeting him as he usually visits Mauritius annually for the grand Ganesha Chathurti celebrations held in the spring during September.
To Where The River Meets The Sea ...
For Worship, Meditation And Inspiration
Welcome to our tropical paradise on the north shore of Mauritius, the Pearl of the Indian Ocean. Hindu seekers are drawn here throughout the year seeking peace, insight, blessings and the rare opportunity for personal worship of the Divine in a natural setting.
The presiding Deity in the Spiritual Park is the eight-foot-tall granite Panchamukha Ganapati. This majestic five-faced, ten-armed Ganapati looks over azure blue seas facing India--a towering reminder of the original home of the nation's Hindus and of the importance of harmony in life.
To get to the Panchamukha Ganapati Mandapam we walk along a winding path on the west side of the park, crossing a wooden bridge and entering a grove of mango trees. Here we find an incredibly beautiful pavilion of spiritual and architectural uniqueness. It is a one-of-a-kind, wooden shrine built in the Kerala style with thatched roof, the first ever crafted outside of India.
A Sivacharya performs homa and puja to the beautiful
Pancha Mukha Ganapati on the occasion
of Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami visit to Mauritius.
Ganapati is not alone here in this heavenly sanctuary. In the mid-region of the park near the river stands an eight-foot-tall, black granite Dakshinamurti, the south-facing form of Lord Siva representing the silent guru. Wandering eastward on the riverside path through groves of flowering trees, we come across, on the far east of the property, an eight-foot-tall, six-faced black granite Muruga, known as Lord Karttikeya in the north of India. His dynamic power awakens spiritual cognition to propel souls onward in their evolution to Siva's feet. He stands here majestically, facing the lagoon and watching the sun rise each day over the vast Indian Ocean, protecting the fishermen and ships at sea.
On the far west of the property is the Mini Mela gift store. Here we can purchase Gurudeva's books and a variety of Indian bric-a-brac. Next to the Mini Mela is the main monastery building, which is closed to the public.
Solitude, Sadhana and Worship:
Pilgrimage is a time for powerful, life-changing inner work. There are several sadhanas (spiritual practices) that can be performed at the Spiritual Park. The beautiful gardens and groves provide an ideal setting for deep meditation in nature. The Sadhu Sadhana is to wander in the outdoor sanctuary with no place to go, enjoying the colors and beauty of nature in silence, releasing all worries, quieting the mind and getting in touch with the inner you. The Master Course Sadhana consists of studying Gurudeva's main books in the Panchamukha Ganapati Mandapam.
Annual Festivals, Monthly Homa, Classes:
During Ganesha Chaturthi each year, the celebrations are grand and elaborate, as shown in the photo to the left. Thousands of devotees attend to worship Ganesha and receive the blessings of Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, who visits here each year at this time. During the five-day festival to Panchamukha Ganapati (December 21 to 25 each year), an exciting one-day program is organised for children. If you come on the first Sunday of any month, you will be able to participate in a sacred homa to Panchamukha Ganapati (starting at 10:30am), bhajana, brief meditation and cultural activities, followed by a veggie lunch. By prior arrangement, Hindu groups are welcome to use the sanctuary as an ideal setting for their own events and programs. And perhaps most importantly, there are weekly classes for children.
You Can Help Complete the Sanctuary:
The Spiritual Park is a work in progress. The opportunity to support and help with its development is available to all those interested. Donors have given generously in recent years to build the Panchamukha Ganapati Mandapam, Muruga Mandapam and many of the Park's paths and groves.
Future plans include a mandapam for Dakshinamurti, additional landscaping and irrigation system, monastic residence renovation, entrance and parking facilities, perimeter wall and washrooms for visitors. Your donations are welcome.
An Oasis of Peace and Tranquility:
The Spiritual Park sits in a secluded, rural location, away from the noise of cities and traffic. Here in the north of one of the world's most popular vacation destinations, the atmosphere is pure and clean, the island culture is varied and life is unhurried. It is an ideal pilgrimage destination for both Mauritians and international visitors seeking a connection with the Divine and a respite from the hectic pace of modern life. The Park is open seven days a week from 7am to 6pm. If your family or group would like to visit, but are not sure of the best time, don't hesitate. Get in touch. Contact us today!
General Information -- Renseignements
Hours: The Spiritual Park is open to the public seven days a week from 7:00AM to 6:00PM.
Heures d'ouvertures: Le Parc Spirituel est ouvert au public 7 jours sur 7 de 7 heures à 18 heures.
How to Get Here: From Port Louis, drive north on the highway until you reach the roundabout near the Total Filling Station at Mapou, then turn right toward Rivière du Rempart. When reaching Rivière du Rempart, take the road heading toward Roches Noires, and turn left at the junction on that road (just after the Total Station) in the direction of Poudre d'Or. From there drive for two minutes, then turn right onto La Pointe des Lascars Road (where the main road makes a sharp left). After 300 metres you will see the sign for the Spiritual Park at the small road on your right. As no vehicles are allowed inside the Spiritual Park, please park by the roadside adjacent to the Park and make your way to the main entrance. Here you can worship Lord Ganesha at the entrance shrine before making your way by foot to the Ganesha Mandapam. We encourage all visitors to dress modestly, preferably in Hindu clothing (no shorts, short-dresses or tank tops, but smart, casual T-shirts are ok).
Itinéraire pour arriver au Parc: De Port Louis, prenez l'autoroute du nord et conduisez jusqu'au rond-point de Mapou près de la station-service Total. Tournez à droite en direction de Rivière du Rempart. Arrivé à Rivière du Rempart prenez la route principale qui mène vers Roches Noires, et arrivé à la station-service Total, tournez à gauche au carrefour en direction de Poudre D'or. Conduisez pendant deux minutes jusqu'au virage brusque à gauche, ensuite prenez à droite la route latérale qui se dirige vers La Pointe des Lascars. A quelques 300 mètres de là vous trouverez le panneau du Parc Spirituel au bord d'un petit chemin à votre droite. Les véhicules sont interdits à l'intérieur du Parc Spirituel: veuillez garer votre voiture sur la petite route attenante au Parc et marchez vers l'entrée principale. Ici vous pouvez rendre hommage au Seigneur Ganesha au petit autel juste à l'entrée, avant d'entreprendre votre promenade à pied vers le Mandapam de Ganesha. Nous recommandons aux visiteurs de se vêtir décemment, de préférence en tenues vestimentaires hindoues (évitez le short, ou les débardeurs, mais des t-shirts élégants et décontractés sont permis).
Mini Mela Gift Store: Here you will find sacred artifacts and books that contain Gurudeva's core teachings. The store is open daily from 9am to 3pm, except on Mondays. If you are interested in a formal study, please contact Mr. Rajen Manick at 283-8422.
Le Mini Mela ou magasin de cadeaux: Ici vous trouverez des objets sacrés et des livres contenant les enseignements essentiels de Gurudeva. Le magasin est ouvert de 9 heures à 15 heures tous les jours sauf le lundi. Si vous êtes intéressé à sérieusement entreprendre des études sur les enseignements spirituels, veuillez contacter M. Rajen Manick sur le 283-8422.
Activities: For information on attending the monthly homa, weekly classes for children or participating in other ways, please call or e-mail us.
Activités: Pour des renseignements supplémentaires sur le Homa qui a lieu chaque mois, les classes pour enfants chaque semaine ou si vous voulez participer à nos activités ou projets, veuillez nous contacter par téléphone ou courriel.