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TBMSG Mahavihara

Pune, Maharashtra. India

In 1953, a prominent leader of India's untouchable castes embraced Buddhism, inspiring millions to shed the stigma of impurity. The Mahavihara, a Buddhist temple, now serves as the headquarters for a trust founded by former untouchables, guided by Dr. Ambedkar and his disciples Sangharakshita and Dharmachari Lokamitra. Their mission: to uplift impoverished communities through health, education, and women's empowerment.

Nestled in an unassuming industrial area beside the Ramnadi river, the Mahavihara's design embodies its purpose. A vaulted promenade leads to a central Buddha image, flanked by spaces for study, meditation, and communal life. Offices, a library, and meeting rooms line one side, while an amphitheater overlooks the river for cultural events. The ground floor hosts large gatherings, offering panoramic views of the river, protected by a stone bund. Concrete columns and vaults, adorned with China mosaic tiles, echo ancient cave viharas, imbuing the structure with Buddhist significance.


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