Kauai's Hindu Monastery
April 2014 Newsletter
Last month’s special ceremony at the Aadheenam was the March 3rd early morning puja at the svayambhu lingam on the 39th anniversary of Gurudeva’s powerful vision of Lord Siva. Gurudeva described that moment: “One early morning, before dawn, a three-fold vision of Lord Siva came to me. First I beheld Lord Siva walking in a valley. Then I saw His face peering into mine. Then He was seated on a large stone, His reddish golden hair flowing down His back. That was February 15, 1975.” The vibration after the puja pulled those attending deep into the inner worlds during the silent meditation. Many pilgrims arrived during the month, especially enjoying the March 9th Ardra puja to Lord Nataraja. Extra darshan meetings with me were necessary to see everyone. On March 28 two new cows for the Aadheenam arrived from the mainland. These young purebred jerseys are a welcome addition to the our dairy herd. General contributions for March totaled $128,099, which exceeds our minimum monthly goal of $65,000. Special project contributions totaled an additional $208. We are grateful to our global family of temple builders for your continued and generous support. Aum Namasivaya!
Click here to see Bodhinatha's extended travel schedule. Bookmark the link and return for updates.
Dancing with Siva! What an extraordinary expression of our closeness to God, our creative interplay with God. The Cosmic Dance describes the Hindu view of existence, from the first thunder of the drum in His right hand announcing the Beginning, to the final all-consuming flames in His left hand pronouncing the End, which but heralds a new Beginning. Thus, dancing with Siva is everything we do, everything we think and say and feel, from our seeming birth to our so-called death. It is man and God forever engaged in sacred movement. The ancient sages chose the dance to depict God for good reason. Esoterically, movement is the most primal act of existence. Without this simple thing, there would be no universe, no us, no experience, nothing. Light is movement. Thought is movement. Atoms are movement. Life is movement. And, the Hindu holds, God is movement. Of special meaning is the place where Siva dances: in the chitsabha, the hall of consciousness. In other words, it happens within each of us.
Explore Gurudeva's Wisdom
- Study Gurudeva's Master Course, which is filled with philosophical, practical, soul-stirring information potent enough to inspire even a skeptic to change his ways of thinking about life and the ultimate goal of existence on this planet: HimalayanAcademy.com/study/mc/
- Read Gurudeva's books online at: http://www.himalayanacademy.com/looklisten/gurus-talks
- Listen to Gurudeva's inspired talks by visiting: http://himalayanacademy.com/talks/gurudeva
News From the Home of Iraivan Temple
Each month on Chitra nakshatra the monks perform a padapuja to Gurudeva at a small shrine in Kadavul Temple which holds this gold-leafed bronze murti.
The monks offer fresh milk from our monastery cows during the monthly padapuja, poured on the black granite sandals of the satguru
Top to bottom: Bodhinatha places prayers to the devas in the homa; at an interfaith discussion, attended by 300 in Midland, Texas, the Rt. Rev. Sam B. Hulsey regales Bodhinatha and Dr. Randel Everett with stories from his five-decade ministry; the Tushar Mehta family from Seattle, on fifth visit but first time having darshan with Satguru; Bodhinatha meets with Brother David and his fellow travelers; the Ganapati Kulam installs a rosewood cabinet created in Pakistan to hold 1,008 Sivalingams from the Ganges River; Sambandan and Thanaletchmi Umamaheswaran greet the cows during the last days of their month-long pilgrimage before returning home to Singapore; youth from Kawaikini Charter School pose in front of Dakshinamurti.
Iraivan Temple News
Our Iraivan Temple carving site outside of Bengaluru, once far from the city, is now surrounded by the expanding suburbs. Apartments have been built right on the other side of the worksite walls. The new neighbors are unhappy with the noise from the carving equipment. To assuage their discomfort, our team is building an 18-foot-tall wall of steel and concrete. Plus, we have planted a hedge of Bheema Bamboo, one of the fastest growing in the world, to further muffle the noise. Here on Kauai the monastery has received more large boulders for the ongoing temple landscaping project. Each boulder is so large that only one at a time can be trucked up to the monastery. The lowboy trailer had to be specially fitted with a 3/4” steel plate for the boulder to sit on. The plan is to use the boulders to create a ridge on the north side of the temple to mimic Mount Waialeale’s majesty. Some of the boulders will also be interspersed among the garden’s plants, making for fun experience as pilgrims are dwarfed by their massive presence. Our landscape designer, Martin Mosko, visited for a week from his home in Colorado to consult with the swamis about the garden design.
Spring Break brought more pilgrims than usual, many eager to have darshan with Bodhinatha. He was happy to meet them all. Bodhinatha spent a great deal of time preparing study guide material for the upcoming travel-study program to Mauritius with 50 devotees in July. He recorded the video of his quarterly Publisher’s Desk article in Hinduism Today entitled “Hinduism, the Original Humanism.” It’s a critical examination of secular humanism and Hindu humanism for youth immersed in the academic atheism of college life. See the video or read the article (in English, Spanish, Hindi, Tamil and Gujarati) at hinduismtoday.com . Bodhinatha spoke to the Rotary Club of Hanalei Bay, offering a light-hearted, 25-minute talk about the various ways the monastery gives to the local community.
Media Studio Progress
A two-man team from ARC Pacific flew over from Honolulu to install wall murals throughout the Media Studio. It took them two days to fill the building’s walls with art showing our paramparai, all drawn from the S. Rajam collection. In the woodshop, the nine mango desk tops, the entryway doors and two large ventilation windows were completed.
Publications and Other Activities
Another 3,000 copies of Gurudeva’s Lemurian Scrolls are now being printed. We are happy to announce the release of the German edition of Gurudeva’s Toolbox, translated by Professor Devarajan Sankaran. PDF, Kindle, Nook, ePub and Web viewing versions are available on our himalayanacademy.com website. Thanks to our Digital Dharma Donors for their support which sponsors these productions.
A class from the Kawaikini Charter School visited the monastery. The school’s curriculum is all taught in the Hawaiian language until 5th grade, after which it continues with an hour of Hawaiian each day. The children had a tour out to see Iraivan Temple. On the way they offered a beautiful Hawaiian chant. Brother David Steindle-Rast, a senior Catholic monk of the Benedictine Order, originally from Austria, also visited during March. He and his small group were given a tour of the grounds, after which they met with Satguru Bodhinatha and swamis. Brother David actively promotes the practice of gratefulness and was involved (along with Gurudeva) in past interfaith Global Forums in Oxford and Moscow. Three journalists visited in March: Char Ravelo, publisher of Hawaii’s Inspiration Magazine, came to visit with seven friends; Tiffany Hill flew from Honolulu to do an article for Hawaii Magazine on the monastery; and Pamela Varma Brown, a freelance writer and neighbor, sat with the monks to capture the history of the monastery for her new book, Kauai Stories.
Bodhinatha's Newest Teachings Online
Satguru Bodhinatha is now turning his 15-minute Keynote presentations into movies which can be used for our personal benefit or shared at a satsang of friends. See them here . Thanks to a vibrant team of transcribers we can hear Bodhinatha's recent talks and read the transcriptions here . Read the transcriptions on line. Click here for all of Bodhinatha's talks.
Bodhinatha's weekly talks can be heard on our website:
Click here for a complete index of both Bodhinatha's and Gurudeva's talks on line
Visiting the Temple Purifies the Mind, Grants Humility
(March 25, 2014)
Click here to see Bodhinatha's extended travel schedule. Bookmark the link and return for updates.
Top to bottom: Monks gather in front of the Murugan shrine during Sun One homa; Nirvani Nilakanthanatha has become a bowl turner. He poses with a Monkeypod slab; one of his creations, a bowl with a fitted lid, all turned on our monastery lathe.
Follow our daily activities at Today at Kauai's Hindu Monastery (blog)
April will finally see the release of the first of a series of documentaries based on The History of Hindu India written by the Hinduism Today editorial team in collaboration with noted historian Dr. Shiva Bajpai. With support from a generous grant by the Uberoi Foundation, we hired videographer Sushma Khadepaun-Parmar to produce the documentary. After months of work, it will premier at the Hindu Education Meet in Bali—complete with subtitles in Bahasa Indonesia!
The documentary covers Indian history from Indus Valley through the Gupta period (around 300 ce), and includes sections on Hindu beliefs and practices. These are the topics found in most US sixth-grade social studies books, as students, by law, study ancient civilizations at this level. It is hoped the movie will find use in American classrooms as an authentic presentation of Hinduism from a Hindu point of view, thus correcting many unfortunate attitudes and inaccuracies in the current textbooks.
Sush, as she goes by, worked with us to collect hundreds of photos and film clips and to produce several marvelous animations, including one on karma which is sure to be the most borrowed section of the movie.
Actor Raj Narayan narrates the 20-minute film. He is also producing the audio book of The Guru Chronicles. We commissioned Raj for his charming on-screen presence, and his ability to correctly pronounce the Sanskrit, Hindi and Tamil words while speaking English with a universally understood California accent. Parts of his narration were filmed in Chennai at Aru Padai Veedu Murugan Temple—the popular replica of Lord Muruga’s famous six temples. While in Chennai, Raj and Sush filmed the students of the Veda Agama Samskrutha Maha Patashala of Bengaluru who traveled to Chennai specially for the filming. Their Sanskrit chanting is a highlight of the movie.
The movie will be available in English and with Spanish subtitles on YouTube as well as for sale on DVD.
Thousands of Years in 20 Minutes: (top to bottom) history book cover; narrator Raj Narayan; Bengaluru Patashala students chanting in Chennai temple; illustration of the Silk Routes connecting Indus Valley with Europe and Asia; “what goes around comes around;” President Barack Obama at Diwali celebrations in the White House in 2012.
The Power of Bequests: Making a
Difference with the Stroke of a Pen
The July 2007 issue of this newsletter reported the almost $2 million bequest of the late Dr. Devananda Tandavan to Kauai’s Iraivan Temple. “A gift like that is one of the reasons bequests have been the fastest growing source of charitable revenue in the United States over the past 40 years,” says Phil Murphy, HHE’s former planned giving specialist.
He adds that those of lesser means than Dr. Tandavan can use the same charitable tool to make a commitment to a larger gift than they thought possible and in a way that does not affect their current finances.
“Bequests are powerful tools that make a big difference to good causes,” Murphy points out. “Yet they keep the donor in complete control of his or her resources during life. That’s why they’re the most popular way of making an estate gift to charity.” He cited a report by the Sharpe Group that said bequests accounted for $22.91 billion in gifts to U.S. charities in 2006 alone.
“Most of those gifts didn’t come close to Dr. Tandavan’s $2 million,” he notes; “$5,000 and $10,000 bequests are far more common than the whopper bequests that make headlines. But they can be the largest single gift that an individual ever makes. Also, they’re completely revocable. If someone’s circumstances change, they’re free to change their bequest.”
Given the flexibility of bequests, why do less than ten percent of US decedents leave a bequest to charity? “The main barrier is psychological,” Murphy asserts. “Most adults die without a written estate plan. We tend to put off writing our wills because we don’t want to face our mortality. But without something official in writing, charities you care about get nothing.”
Those who do leave bequests to good causes see it as a way of giving their children a final message. “One donor with three children and six grandchildren told me that her charitable bequest was part of her children’s inheritance,” Murphy recalls. “ ‘It’s my final reminder to them to care about others,’ she told me. Charitable bequests, though perhaps a small part of your total estate, tell people what you stood for during life. That’s part of their power.”
For suggested bequest language or to learn more about setting up your own estate and life income plan to provide immediate tax and income benefits to you and your family, while also providing a future gift to the temple, contact Shanmuganathaswami at 808-822-3012, x 244 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org to receive it by e-mail.
Learn more about estate planning and planned giving at hheonline.org
A New DevaTrek Card Deck Released
The latest version now includes fourteen marvelous cards on the seven chakras to help us all learn the key words associated with each chakra. The cards have some unusual artwork on them also.
Sponsor the Perimeter Wall
The second prakaram wall is 3.5 feet tall, two feet thick and 475 feet long. It comprises 45 short pillars (the section with the pot on top) and 44 panels (the long section between the pillars). Each pillar and panel pair require 544 man-days to carve, even with the massive granite slabs being sawn to size by machine. Each panel will be inscribed (inside the ornate border shown in the photo at right) with verses from scripture and the philosophy and history of the temple.
- One pillar section: $15,000
- One panel section: $30,000
Study the Master Course
Building Fund Donations
Thanks to Our February Temple Builders in 15 Countries
SUMMARY: For the seven months of September to March, our minimum monthly goal was $455,000. Excluding contributions directed toward special projects, we received actual contributions of $532,791.19.
|Building Fund Donations|
|Marie & R. Bhanugopan||US$108.00|
|Subramanaim & Malathy Nirmalananda||101.00|
|N. & Neelanthi Panchalingam||43.68|
|Sri Dhevi Arasaratnam||101.00|
|Peter Tracy Balogh||21.00|
|Ron & Jennifer Burke||50.00|
|Maryanna & Antony Cartier||101.00|
|Anand & Maya Naidu||51.00|
|Naguleswary & Manickam Senthivel||50.00|
|Thavam & Thambimuttoo Sivagnanam||51.00|
|Sayanthan & Anupama Sivanathan||11.00|
|Sara K. Sivasurier||239.24|
|Nagula & Sutha Suthaker||101.00|
|S. & N. Thanigasalam||85.44|
|Luckshmi & Logan Siva Nirmalananda||201.00|
|Vennila Mardemootoo & Sivaneswaran Sockanathan||50.00|
|Thanesh Kumar & Leelawathy Aianarappan||14.73|
|Arulmani Devi Arumugam||90.84|
|Rathidevi & Veerasamy Batumallah||46.76|
|Arulmani Chandra Kumar & Sujith Arulmani||30.28|
|Yoga Rubini & Chandra Ganth Family||15.25|
|R. Jayakumar & Yoga Bhavani Family||15.25|
|Uma Dewi & Dinesh Kumar Jayaram||8.79|
|M. Shanmuganathan & A. Kamalambikai Family||30.50|
|Amaraysh, Kumutha & Jerry Lai||15.14|
|Darrshan Letchumanan & Yuvan Letchumanan||30.28|
|Wasantha Devi Murugan||15.25|
|Thambiah Murugesu & Chandravathani||30.50|
|Rasiah Vallipuram & Pathumanithi Nagalingam||60.56|
|M. Suranthiran Naidu||30.28|
|Mohanavilashiny & Navukarasu||30.28|
|Yehanthini & Siva Taranee Navukarasu||15.14|
|Kaveta Supramaniam Ramoo||30.28|
|Supramaniam Ramoo & In Memory of Neelavathy Thangavelu||30.28|
|Puvana Ratha Krishnan||15.25|
|B. S. Selvakone||51.00|
|Ambikabathi Shanmugam Pillay||30.50|
|Raja Singam Raja Ratnam & Shreema Rasiah||30.28|
|Roselia Simon - Kulamani Ganesha||246.00|
|Hitesvar Skandanatha Sivanathan & Rishitaa Sivanathan||15.14|
|Saraswathy & Ramesh Sivanathan||30.50|
|Mohana Sundari & Sivasekaran||30.28|
|A. Sockalingam & Chandrasekari||30.28|
|Devi & the late Selvadurai Subramaniam||15.14|
|Abbhirama & Lavitra Thilageshvaran||14.73|
|Remalah & A. Thinathayalan||15.14|
|Thanavinthan Siva Thirumalai||15.63|
|Vikneswaran A. Vinsent||30.28|
|Shree Saroja Devi Doorgiat||3.33|
|Amrit Singh Jaypal||8.33|
|Seedha Lutchmee Moonesawmy||3.33|
|Siven Barlen Mootoosamy||1.67|
|Vimaley Chellen Mootoosamy||1.67|
|Prekash & Sabita Baladien||30.00|
|Clive & Puvaneswary Roberts||175.00|
|Anil Ananda Badhwar||10.00|
|Fremont Lawrence & Toshadevi Nataraj||61.00|
|Vaiyapuri Kamala Devi||50.00|
|Kavitha Darshini & Amitpal Singh||76.28|
|Shree Vishna Rasiah & Sharmila Harry||30.28|
|Darmaguhan & Shivali Satgunasingam||100.00|
|Hotranatha & Punita Ajaya||25.00|
|Adi & Asha Alahan||25.00|
|Vel & Valli Alahan||25.00|
|In Memory of Kanaiyalal Premchand Bhavsar||404.00|
|Kaika & Nilufer Clubwala||101.00|
|J.C. Crouch & Lucy Dickson||100.00|
|Shyamadeva & Peshanidevi Dandapani||51.00|
|Banu Devi & Chellappa Deva||25.00|
|Amarnath & Latha Devarmanai||101.00|
|Suketu & Mita Gandhi||51.00|
|Chaturbhuj N. Gidwani||40.00|
|Dattaprabhakar V. Gokhale||101.00|
|Hiranya & Saraswathi Devi Gowda||55,515.00|
|Toshadeva & Kamala Guhan||36.00|
|Prabodh & Jean Gupta||100.00|
|Kriya & Sharyn Haran||100.00|
|James L. Haynes||50.00|
|Shripad & Suma Hegde||251.00|
|Vasanthi S. Iyer||50.00|
|Adhik Balwant Kadam||21.00|
|Ravi & Vimala Kamineni||40.00|
|Prem Kumar Kandalu||51.00|
|Srinivas Reddy Kankanala||116.00|
|Srinivas & Shanthi Karri||40.00|
|Rudy Tanzi & Dora Kovacs||216.00|
|Radha & Ganesh Krishnan||108.00|
|Christina & Vajra Lagdameo-Romano||20.00|
|Gerard & Zhena Linsmeier||108.00|
|Mira Das & R. Mahalingam||250.00|
|Rohan & Girija Malkhare||101.00|
|Laura Devi Marks||324.00|
|Dave & Cindy McGonagle||45.00|
|Amit Kapoor & Raveena Nadaraja||125.00|
|Palani & Selvarany Nadarajah||15.00|
|Nitya & Becky Nadesan||141.00|
|Changam & Nirmala Naidu||51.00|
|Manish M. Naidu||11.11|
|Ram & Rema Nair||1,001.00|
|Sanjaya K. Nath||262.00|
|Emma & Narendra Nemivant||25.00|
|S. Murthy Pappu||116.00|
|Easvan & Devi Param||101.00|
|Janaka & Bhavani Param||283.00|
|Ghanshyam & Subadra Patel||151.00|
|Jay & Nimisha Patel||1,008.00|
|Vinay & Hansa R. Patel||101.00|
|Richard Henry Pratt||500.00|
|Ravi & Srivani Putluru||101.00|
|Sailaja Sudhakar Radhakrishnan||11.00|
|Deva & Gayatri Rajan||1,001.00|
|Mohan Deepak Ram||119.00|
|Jeyashree & Venkat Remuneration||50.00|
|Rajesh & Yatra Raman||11.00|
|Kasi & Vidya Ramanathan||101.00|
|Partab & Chandra Ramsinghani||54.00|
|Murrali Rangarajan & Mala Umapathy||101.00|
|Bhaskar & Tanuja Reddy||101.00|
|Jai & Laxmi Reddy||75.00|
|Annie & Mark Ruiz||108.00|
|Cliff & Kathy Runge||50.00|
|Aran & Valli Sendan||510.00|
|Suresh M. Sevak||101.00|
|Kirti & Mudra Shah||25.00|
|Gurudatta & Saipriya Shamain||101.00|
|Vijaya & Devika Shankar||101.00|
|Sivakami Shanmugasundaram Family||111.00|
|Praveen Y. Sharma||101.00|
|Mr. & Mrs. Pranavan||25.00|
|Iraja & Nilani Sivadas||108.00|
|Dharshi & Sivasothy Sivakumar||150.00|
|Nathan & Sulena Sivananda||50.00|
|Tandu & Uma Sivanathan||50.00|
|Pitambar & Kamlesh Somani||101.00|
|Chaluvadi & Vasudha Sridhar||251.00|
|Balaji & Suganthi Subramanian||1,008.00|
|Nandi Deva Sundaram||50.00|
|Shanthi Suresh & Sures Ramamurti||101.00|
|Vasuhi & S. Sureshwaran||200.00|
|Sivam U. Thillaikanthan||60.00|
|Jay & Dipti Vanikar||21.00|
|Suneel & Shakuntala Vanikar||21.00|
|Neel & Varsha Vanilkar||21.00|
|S.B. & Anne Walton||2,016.00|
|David & Shelah Young||51.00|
|Total Building Fund||$127,646.26|
|Iraivan Temple Endowment|
|Total Endowment Funds||$453.00|
|Special Project Donations|
|Gail La Mar||108.00|
|Srinivas R. Madaboosi||100.00|
|Total Special Project Donations||208.00|
Your support is deeply appreciated!
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Iraivan Temple is a punya tirtha, a sacred destination for devout pilgrims. The vision of Lord Siva on San Marga that Gurudeva was blessed with in 1975 is sustained and made manifest by the daily sadhanas of 21 resident monastics from five nations. Kadavul Hindu Temple and the many sacred areas of San Marga are available to Hindus for worship, meditation, japa and quiet reflection. It is best, if you are planning to come to visit us, to email us in advance to make sure the days of your visit coincide with our open times. And, if you want to have darshan with Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, to check if he is in residence and to make the necessary appointment. Please see our visitor information pages for more details.
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