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Berlin’s Murugan Temple: My Go-to Place for Peace of Mind

Berlin’s Murugan Temple: My Go-to Place for Peace of Mind

Asia, the biggest continent in the world, and home to nearly sixty percent of the world’s population, is the site of a lot of diversity— be it in food, lifestyle, languages, or religions, among other things. Identifying myself as a member of the Asian diaspora is always a proud moment for me. Of the many kinds of diversity mentioned above, I am always especially hooked by the variety of religions practiced freely by Asian people, such as Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism, and many more.

For those of us who grew up in a religious Hindu family, the practice of visiting a place of worship, the “TEMPLE” is taught and seeded in our minds from childhood. At all auspicious moments in our lives, such as birthdays, anniversaries, or even a day on which a new vehicle is purchased, the first place we visit is the temple, so that we can get blessings from God — so that God (he/she/they) will take care of us and our prayers.

Moving to Europe for work from the Southern part of India was a big decision in my life. After finding an apartment and slowly settling into life here in Berlin, I decided to find a temple, so that I could pay my visit and pray to God, to help me, to be with me in all my actions. I am a firm believer in  the thought that, “if we put 100% of our effort into what we do, and leave the rest to God, God will take care of it”.

Finally, I found the Murugan Temple at Blaschkoallee 48, – 12347 Berlin. The location is so peaceful and serene. One major highlight of this temple is that most of the people visiting it also speak the same language (“Tamil”) that I do, which makes me feel at home.

I love visiting the temple to relax and distance myself from any serious thoughts about life and work. There is usually some classical music playing in the background, and the priest performs the rituals in worship to god, reciting songs. It’s always magical. The most important and festive time of year at the temple takes place in the month of August, when the idols of the Gods are led out of the temple on a tēr (chariot) constructed especially for this purpose. The procession goes around the block, as people dance and sing prayers.

On a lighter note, the temple serves great food to visitors on certain days, including tasty tea, rice, and more south Indian and Sri Lankan inspired food. In addition to praying to God, you can also meet new people who speak the same language as yours, and even make new friends. This makes it a great networking place, not only a place of worship.

Sharing my experiences of this specific place in Berlin for the Mapping Memory project, which aims to encourage and establish collective remembrance and empowerment within the Asian Diaspora in Berlin and Germany, was an experience I will cherish forever.



Balachandar Venkataraman.