Ayodhya is brimming with divinity and excitement on the occasion of the first Ram Navami after the Pran Pratishtha in the newly built temple. The temple hosted a memorable ceremony to honour the birth of Lord Ram. The ritual of Surya Abhishek or Surya Tilak amplified the ceremony’s significance. The ritual involves the sun rays touching the deity’s forehead directly. This symbolic gesture created a divine atmosphere in the temple premises. This particular ritual is said to be in practice in the ancient temples in Indian subcontinent since long. 


The Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bengaluru and experts of the Central Building Research Institute, Roorkee, were roped in for the Surya Tilak project and tasked with creating the mechanisms for the Surya Abhishek which became a unique feature of the Ram Mandir.   

Minutes after 12 noon on Ram Navami, the sun rays illuminated the forehead of Lord Ram. This ritual lasted for around two to two-and-a-half minutes.  

The team infused a specialized apparatus with high quality mirrors and lenses to ensure that sun’s rays get directed from the temple third floor near Shikara to Garbha Griha precisely at the right time. 

They carried out the calculations of the position of the Sun and designed the optical system. Finally, they carried out the integration and alignment at the temple.    

Sunlight entered from the top of the garbha griha through IR-filter equipped aperture from south direction. 

A network of four mirrors and two lenses was fixed in such a pattern and angle that they directed the sunbeam to the forehead of Ram Lalla. 

The design of the Surya Tilak system was modified to suit the current structure of the temple. The design with four mirrors and two lenses was carried out by the IIA-Bengaluru team. The apparatus is made of bronze and brass, to ensure the durability. The final design of the Surya Tilak, with four mirrors and four lenses, will be implemented once the full temple is constructed by placing the mirrors and lenses in their permanent fixtures.