The Census shows that the migration of Tamils to the State of Queensland started only very recently. Prior to 1985 there were only a few Tamil families living in the state. Only in 1983 some of the Hindu families felt the need for community worship so monthly congregational prayer meetings were conducted first at homes and then at the SWARA Hall. Since then, regular prayer meetings have been conducted at this hall at Spring Hill.
From our survey it is clear that the worship of Vinayakar in Brisbane was originally started in the form of congregational worship.
As this congregational worship continued to expand, the building of a traditional Hindu temple in Brisbane became a necessity for obvious reasons. As a result a Convening Committee was formed on 25 April 1986 and subsequently this committee registered under the name, 'Hindu Ahlaya Sangam.' The members of the first Management Committee were unanimously elected on 12 October 1986 and the second in March 1998. The subsequent Committees continue to be elected yearly.
The major task for the Management Committees during the period 1987 to
1990 was to raise sufficient funds to purchase a suitable block of land
to build the temple. Finally in 1990, the Management Committee succeeded in purchasing 4.5 acres of elevated, virgin bushland at South Maclean, 35 km South of Brisbane.. Similar to the locations of the Hindu temples in India, this virgin land in Brisbane is also situated in the midst of areas of natural scenic beauty, in proximity to the Logan River at South Maclean.
An application seeking special consent to built Selva Vinayakar Temple was submitted to the Beaudesert Shire Council in July 1991 and permission was granted through the Planning and Environment Courts, Brisbane in May 1992. At the initial stage the committee started building a centre for Selva Vinayakar and additional shrines for Siva, Vishnu and Navagraha.
The building plans were approved by the council in August 1992 and a plan for the centre began to unfold with the laying of the foundation on 10 June 1993. As the first stage the Maha Mandapam (main hall) was completed and the major shipment of the Deities, shrine doors etc. was received from South India. At the same time stapathies and the three sculptors arrived from South India.
The construction of the shrines commenced on 24 June 1994 and after completion of the Brisbane Selva Vinayakar Kovil
the consecration ceremony was held on 5 February 1995. This traditional Kumbabishekam was witnessed by hundreds of devotees and well-wishers came from the other States and Territories also.
Similar to the Hindu temples in India, Selva Vinayakar temple is also situated in the midst of areas of natural scenic beauty, in proximity to the Logan River at South Maclean an area of prevailing peace and inspiration to the devotees visiting this temple.
Selva Vinayakar temple is built according to traditional Indian style in conformity with ancient Sitpa Sastra and Agamas. A beautiful tower (Gopuram) and ornamental icons were also constructed by temple builders and sculptors invited from South India.
Most of the important developments have been completed and many more are in progress.
Now the structure of the centre needs some elaboration. Lord Vinayakar is accorded the main place. The vimanam (the structure that is built over the sanctum sanctorum) of this beautiful Central Shrine of Vinayakar, with its stupi, stands at a height of about 20 feet above the ground level. On the right of the Central Shrine Siva takes His abode and Abirami (Parvathi) is on the left. Maha Vishnu and Lord Murukan find their appropriate places to the rear of the Central Shrine.
The shrines of Navagrah and Vairavar are located in their respective places close to the main entrance. Images are also installed in the niches of the three walls surrounding the Central Shrine. They face the 'prakara', the path which runs round the shrine. Adjacent to the main deity, on the left of the shrine, Chandeswarar is assigned his place. On the right of Lord Siva are Nalvar (Sampanthar, Apper Sundarar and Manikkavasakar) in panchaloga (five metals) and Sri Ramakrishna in granite.
This temple also serves as a centre for various cultural and educational activities. Religious classes are conducted for children; music and dance programs are conducted and scholars and religious leaders are invited to address the devotees on special occasions.
The Sri Selva Vinayakar Temple was rebuilt in the same
location and the new temple was opened to devotees and the Maha
Kumbabishekam was held on the 1st of May 2015.