Frequently Asked Questions

Please see below for answers to the most frequently asked questions. (Please click on each question to display the answer.) If you still canot find an answer to your question, please contact us.

Where is the Temple Located?

For our address and a Google Map of our location, please visit our Map & Directions page, where you can search for local businesses and generate directions from your location.

When is the Temple open?

The Temple is open 7 days a week, 365 days of the year. Please visit our Temple Hours andDaily Puja Schedule pages for more information. We also have extended hours on festivals and certain special holidays. Please refer to our Temple Calendar for more information on festivals and special events.

Do you serve food at the Temple?

Yes, we serve lunch and dinner every day, free of charge. Lunch is served after the noon puja, generally around 2:00 – 3:00 PM. On Saturdays, lunch is served at the end of the Abhishekam & Homam Program, which is generally around 2:30 – 3:30 PM. Dinner is served after the evening puja, generally around 8:00 or 8:30 PM. Unfortunately, we are not able to provide meals at other times, so if you will need to eat at a different time, we suggest that you bring some snacks or plan to visit a local grocery store or restaurant.

Can we buy food outside of the regular mealtimes?

Unfortunately, we do not have food available for sale at the Temple. We serve lunch (2:00 – 3:00 PM) and dinner (8:00 – 9:00 PM) every day for free, but if you need to eat at a different time, we suggest that you bring snacks or visit a local grocery store or restaurant.

Where’s the nearest hotel, grocery store, gas station, etc?

To find local businesses, we suggest you visit our Map & Directions page, and click on “Search nearby” to search for local businesses. You can also visit our Local Businesses page.

Is there a dress code?

Yes, there is a dress code that must be followed if you wish to enter the Temple. Please review our Dress Code & Etiquette guidelines carefully and plan accordingly. Please note that this is the dress code for entering the Temple. If you are participating in a puja or homam in the Temple, Western-style pants and skirts are not permitted. If you have any questions or concerns about our dress code, please don’t hesitate to contact us for help.

Why do you have a dress code?

Every public establishment has a dress code, indicating the appropriate attire required for entering. Whether it is a courthouse, school, workplace, church, mosque, temple, or even a common restaurant, there will be a dress code that must be followed. It is no different for our Temple.

In order to create an atmosphere of sanctity, respect and devotion, we ask that everyone dress according to common principles of modesty. When people are dressed in a very revealing way, this is a distraction for those who have come to worship, pray or meditate. We ask that you help us in maintaining a respectful and sacred atmosphere.

Not only that, we are a Teaching Temple, and part of our mission is to teach about the authentic cultural traditions of Saivism and Sanatana Dharma in general. The best way to teach is by experience, so we invite you to experience the ancient culture of Sanatana Dharma by coming to the Temple in the traditional way.

Why do I have to tie my hair?

As part of our dress code, any man or woman with hair longer than shoulder-length will be asked to tie their hair when they enter the Temple. It is most preferable that long hair be in a braid or bun, but a ponytail is also acceptable. The main reason for this is that we run our Temple in a very open and accessible manner. We allow everyone to come into the main sanctum and to come quite close to the murtis. This means that you may be coming quite close to the naivedyam, or food, that will be offered to the deities. Just as you would not like to eat food that contains someone else’s hair, we do not wish to offer food to God if it contains hair in it.

In addition, we allow everyone to come near the homa kunda. During certain events, everyone will be invited to make offerings into the homa fire. It is very inauspicious if any hair falls into the homa fire. Not only is it inauspicious for the homam, it is also not auspicious for the person whose hair fell in. So for your sake, as well as for the purity of our homas and pujas, we ask that you tie your hair if it is longer than shoulder-length.

Can I bring flowers, fruits, or other offerings?

You are most welcome to bring offerings for Divine Mother Rajarajeswari. Fruits and flowers are wonderful traditional offerings. Milk is another item that we use in abundance, since all devotees are allowed to perform milk abhishekam for free during the Saturday Homam and Abhishekam program. Many gallons are used during the public abhishekam, especially during the summer months, so your donation of milk is very welcome. Another item used in abundance is sesame oil for the Temple lamps. If you would like to offer these items, please bring them to the Bookstore counter, and we will store them appropriately for use in upcoming pujas.

If you are interested in making a donation of food items, we suggest that you speak with the Kitchen Coordinator the next time you come to the Temple, or contact the Temple. We may already have certain items in storage, and the Coordinator can suggest the food items that would be most helpful at that time.

If there are any other special items you would like to donate or sponsor, please contact us.

Can I offer a sari to Devi?

You are most welcome to bring a sari for offering to Devi. If you bring a sari to offer, please bring it to the Bookstore counter. You will have two options. If you would like to see the sari on Devi that day, we will make every effort to accommodate your wish. According to your schedule and the puja schedule for that day, we will offer the sari by draping it like a shawl on Devi.

The other choice is that you can simply leave the sari with us, to be offered to Devi at any time in the future. Please be aware that we are not able to schedule a day when Devi would wear a given sari.

Can I offer a lime garland to Devi?

We do allow lime garlands to be offered to Devi, but please note that all lime garlands must be strung inside the Temple. If you wish to offer a lime garland, please bring the required number of whole, uncut limes to the Temple. You can also bring a needle, string and other supplies, or we will provide them for you. Please bring the limes to the Bookstore counter, and a volunteer will guide you in making the garland.

If you bring a lime garland that has already been strung, we will ask that you unstring the limes, wash them in our facility, and then restring them. Once this is done, the garland may be offered. We understand that this policy may be different from what you are used to, but the policy has been set by the Temple Peetadhipati, Sri Chaitanyananda Natha Saraswati. We respectfully ask for your kind cooperation.