The Adyar Banyan tree (Adyar Aala maram) is located in the campus of Theosophical society, in Adyar, Chennai. This tree is believed to be around 450 years old and is thought to be one of the largest banyan trees in the whole world. The total area occupied by the tree and its offshoots, is estimated to be around 40,000 square feet. Actually, the main trunk was uprooted by a big cyclone in 1989 and only the branches survive today along with a small portion of the main trunk.
The above two photos provide the view of this banyan tree, as seen from the right side and left side of the viewing point (respectively). Tourists are allowed till this place and since the central trunk of this tree is not there, one can only see its offshoots all around the place.
This is not exactly a tourist spot, but since I went there anyway, I came to know that there are people from around 55 countries, living in the campus of the Theosophical society. So, I became inquisitive about Theosophical society and Theosophy.
I got the below quotes from the website of Theosophical society:
“Members of the Theosophical society are united by a common search of truth and desire to learn the meaning and purpose of existence through study, reflection, self-responsibility and loving service”
“Theosophy offers a philosophy which renders life intelligible and demonstrates that justice and love guides the cosmos”
According to Wikipedia, the Aims/ Ideals of the Theosophical Society are as follows:
1. To form a nucleus of the universal brotherhood of humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste or colour.
2. To encourage the study of comparative religion, philosophy and science.
3. To investigate unexplained laws of nature and the powers latent in man.
Well, that’s some philosophical search initiative, don’t you think? 🙂 BTW, the Theosophical Society was started in 1875 by Helena Petrovna Blavatsky (among others) and one section of its headquarters moved to Adyar in Chennai by 1883.