By Noah Rubin
The Hindu Jain Temple in Monroeville, PA serves a vital role in the religious realm of Pittsburgh, operates in a unique capacity, and sports a particularly rare origin. This religious institution came about as a result of the differences between north and south Indian temples when imagining Hindu temples in the United States. In the Pittsburgh community, disagreements occurred over which primary deity would occupy the central shine; as a result of this, the temple was split into two, the Sri Venkateswara Temple in Penn Hills and the Hindu Jain Temple. This religious institution is immensely important since the United States has the most Jain temples outside India. As the Hindu Jain Temple’s website proudly boasts, “This temple is the first unified Hindu-Jain Temple in North America and perhaps in the world and is a unique example of understanding, tolerance and appreciation of each other’s religious practices and traditions.” The origin of the Hindu Jain Temple ties into its unique capacity in that it is central to families’ lives. For religious reasons, as well as cultural and social reasons, immigrants have been able to assimilate while preserving central traditions all thanks to the community provided.
Religious, cultural, and social cohesion are at the center of the Hindu Jain Temple’s mission. They work to achieve it through many avenues such as religious services, major religious festivals, religious seminars (spiritual), a community hall for public use, youth events, senior citizen events (cultural), language instruction, history, culture, dance, music of India (educational), Diwali dinner for homeless shelters, and national and international disaster fundraisers (social/humanitarian).
In the religious realm of Pittsburgh, the Hindu Jain Temple provides a space to refill one’s spirituality and be a part of a social community all under one roof. A place where worshippers, observers, and visitors alike can be educated, dance, and enjoy cultural food, the Hindu Jain Temple provides Pittsburgh with a necessary space to find a community and build a home away from home.
M., Mona. “Inside the Hindu Jain Temple.” 5 October 2015, Yelp, https://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/hindu-jain-temple-monroeville?select=uguWAPvH_xUXAA3V3_Mvkg.
Patel, Raman. “Hindu Jain Temple, Monoroeville, PA, USA.” 1 November 2014, Panoramio,https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hindu_Jain_Temple,_Monoroeville,_PA,_USA._-_panoramio.jpg.
Raj, Selva J., and Reid B. Locklin. Vernacular Catholicism, Vernacular Saints: Selva J. Raj on “Being Catholic the Tamil Way”. SUNY Press, 2017.
Lee, Jonathan H. X., et al., editors. Asian American Religious Cultures. ABC-CLIO, 2015.
Hindu Jain Temple. “Hindu Jain Temple.” Hindu Jain Temple, www.hindujaintemple.org/about-us/history-1.html.
“Hindu Jain Temple.” Yelp. 2015. https://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/hindu-jain-temple-monroeville?select=TKpN0awMAryeuBZN2sPtew
How to Cite
MLA: Rubin, Noah. “Hindu Jain Temple.” ReligYinz: Mapping Religious Pittsburgh. University of Pittsburgh, 19 January 2020, https://religyinz.pitt.edu/hindu-jain-temple/.
APA: Rubin, Noah. (2020). Hindu Jain Temple. ReligYinz: Mapping Religious Pittsburgh. https://religyinz.pitt.edu/hindu-jain-temple/.
Chicago: Rubin, Noah. “Hindu Jain Temple.” ReligYinz: Mapping Religious Pittsburgh. University of Pittsburgh, 19 January 2020. https://religyinz.pitt.edu/hindu-jain-temple/.