Kauai's Hindu Monastery
June 2016 Newsletter
On May 12 Shanmuganathaswami, Siddhanathaswami and I traveled to the US mainland and British Columbia for two-weeks. The programs began in Northern California with personal darshan sessions with devotees and two satsangs—one in Walnut Creek with members and devotees and a second in Fremont with a monthly bhajan group. Next was British Columbia. After a ferry ride to Vancouver Island, events included a shared dinner, special outings and visits to two homes of devotees. Next we were off to Chicago where we enjoyed two satsangs—the first with the Saivite Tamil Foundation group and the second for members and devotees. An outing to Garfield Conservatory was followed by a group lunch. Our final satsang was in Syracuse, New York. My topic at the member satsangs was Gurudeva’s teaching on living two-thirds within and the concept of inner-and-outer consciousness versus up-and-down consciousness. At the general satsangs we talked of dharma, Auvaiyar’s Atti Chudi and “Drawing Close to Lord Ganesha.” While we were traveling, the monastery celebrated Vaikasi Visakan on May 20th with an elaborate abhishekam to Lord Murugan. General contributions for May totaled $54,328, which is less than our minimum monthly goal of $65,000. Special project contributions totaled an additional $615. 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.
Each day hundreds of millions of Hindus awaken for the last fifth of the night, bathe, don fresh clothing, apply sectarian marks, called tilaka, and sit in a clean, quiet place for religious disciplines. Facing east or north, the devotional puja rites of bhakti yoga are performed. Hatha yoga, hymn singing, japa and chanting are often included. Then follows scriptural study and meditation, listening to the sound current and contemplating the moonlike inner light during brahma muhurta, the auspicious hour-and-a-half period before dawn. The duly initiated practice advanced yogas, such as those revealed in Merging with Siva—but only as directed by their guru, knowing that unless firmly harnessed, the kundalini can manifest uncontrollable desires. Through the day, karma yoga, selfless religious service, is performed at every opportunity. Besides these yogas of doing, Hindus practice the central yoga of being—living a joyful, positive, harmonious life. The Vedas declare, “The mind, indeed, is this fleeting world. Therefore, it should be purified with great effort. One becomes like that which is in one’s mind—this is the everlasting secret.”
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
Bodhinatha visits a youth camp group at Dr. Jeyendran’s home in Chicago. They asked many pertinent questions. Each year the kids spend a few days of classes and fun in the downstairs hall.
Each morning before dawn the monks meet at the Ganesha shrine in Kadavul Temple to get blessings for the new day. And each day He is decorated in different colors and flowers.
Iraivan Temple Report
Through most of May, the skilled stone carvers in Bengaluru, India, worked on Iraivan Temple’s 148-meter-long perimeter wall. At the end of May the carving team spent a week building heavy duty crates, packing finished pieces and loading the crates into shipping containers. Four containers are now on their way to Hawaii! Here on Kauai the main drainage system was installed around the temple. It will drain the rainwater from the foundation plinth and channel it away, thereby helping to prevent erosion. The system is designed to accommodate the heaviest of Kauai’s rains.
Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami's Activities
While home in Hawaii, Satguru presented part eight in his series on Patanjali’s teachings in a special class for the youngest monks. He also made a video of his Publisher’s Desk editorial, “Dance and the Spiritual Path,” from the July-August-September issue of our Hinduism Today magazine. The first of Satguru’s weekly talks was “Mindfulness, Being in the Present,” being observant, awakening the superconscious mind and feeling content. You can hear it on our website. Mid-month Satguru traveled to the mainland USA to give a series of informal satsangs on the West Coast, Chicago and Syracuse, New York. At one of the Chicago satsangs, he affectionately fielded some serious questions from two dozen pre-teen and early teenage youth, such as: ”In Hinduism are men and women treated equally? Why are Hindus cremated? Can you be a Hindu if your parents aren’t Hindu? Do wars start because of different religions in different countries?”
Publications and Other Happenings
In May the Ganapati Kulam, publications group of monks, worked on Path to Siva, A Catechism for Youth. This book should be ready by November. The monks are also working, with professional help, on an awesome app for digital devices. Also in May, Acharya Arumuganathaswami and Sadhaka Jayanatha flew, once more, to California’s state capital to give testimony at an Instructional Quality Commission meeting. The commission was entering the final phase of review of edits to the California textbook content standards. A list of positive edits, put together by Acharya in collaboration with Professor Shiva Bajpai and other scholars under the auspices of the Uberoi Foundation, had earlier been submitted. These suggestions were well received by the Commission, and quite a few were adopted. Several years ago most Hindus in the US were not aware of these significant proceedings which can result in a better presentation of Hinduism in our nation’s schools. With Acharya’s help, the flame of awareness has been lit across the Hindu community, who will, no doubt, continue working for the cause of getting a proper representation of our faith in the country’s schools in the decades to come. Two young sevaks arrived at the beginning of May, Kodiswara Selvanathan from Malaysia and Dean Drulias from California. Kodiswara helped unpack dozens of Deity statues and Aum bracelets newly arrived from Haridwar and learned how to milk the monastery cows. Dean worked extensively in our digital photo archives. At our Himalayan Acres farm 180 young Noni trees were planted in a newly prepared field. Nine hundred gallons of newly pressed Noni juice was sent to Los Angeles for bottling.
Top to bottom: Mount Waialeale on a rare cloud-free day; deep trenches were dug for the installation of a major water drainage system; over 3,000 devotees visit our Spiritual Park in Mauritius every month for the Ganesha homa.
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
Jnana. Self Correcting Awareness - May 7, 2016
Mindfulness, Being in the Present - May 1, 2016
Happiness. Purify, remain within - April 24, 2016 Your Self-Concept; You Are a Divine Soul - April 15, 2016
Click here to see Bodhinatha's extended travel schedule. Bookmark the link and return for updates.
Follow our daily activities at Today at Kauai's Hindu Monastery (blog)
Hinduism Today's Latest Issue Now Free Online
Feature Stories: (top to bottom) The July/August/September Hinduism Today cover features Saint Kabir; the unique “shadow art” of Sana Anil Kumar, and the “Ganeshmobile”
The latest edition of our global magazine (July/August/September, 2016) has gone to press and is now available online free of charge. Our feature story follows the burgeoning popularity of the modern saint, Shirdi Sai Baba, whose fellowship and centers grow apace around the world. His shrines are now found far from his home in Maharashtra, and his miracle-filled life has become an inspiration to millions.
Lakshmi Chandrashekar Subramanian gives us the Insight section which follows the life and teachings of another saint, Kabir, who lived in the fifteenth century yet continues to influence Hindus through his mystical poems and devotional music. Throughout his life Kabir sang to Ram and urged those who gathered near to give up base emotions and embrace a more spiritual lifestyle. The words of this beloved rascal and iconoclast can still move the most stone-hearted to a love of God. We share some of his best poems in the article.
Our publisher gets creative with a look at dance and its disciplines, reflecting on how the dedication of an accomplished dancer is much like that of a spiritual aspirant. Using five examples he compares the two, and in the process gives us sound advice on just how to strengthen our weaknesses and make real-life progress on the inner path.
Rajiv Malik and Phal Girota visited the Indian Art Festival in New Delhi to bring us a panoply of the event, which showcased some of the nation’s finest artists, contemporary and traditional. Interviews with eight gifted souls point to the essence of art in India, a nation which, partly because it has 750,000 villages, retains an astonishing number of artists and artisans.
From India we take you to Berkeley, California, where we discovered an institution that may well be a future ally in bringing authentic Hinduism into the American academic world. The Graduate Theological Union, which seeks to represent studies of all faiths, is presented by its president, Riess Pottervield. Last December the University announced the addition of a Dharma Studies program to augment its already broad religious platforms. GTU’s new style contrasts with other religious educational approaches in that its instructors provide a transparent admission of their own spiritual beliefs and practices, rather than withholding their religious identity from the students.
An assortment of fascinating articles follows. In one, Ganesha hits the road and travels across the United States. An anthropologist from Maine tells the tale of creating a vibrant Ganesha-themed vehicle. His wildly decorated car, with a brass Ganesha murti adorning the hood, brings cheers from Hindus and non-Hindus alike. In another article, we unpack the world-class Patanjali food and herb conglomerate, founded by Baba Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna, which is a famous success and billion-dollar industry in India.
There is a story of how one woman finds solace in worship of the Goddess Kali, another on the battle to preserve Sanskrit from Western academic incursions that seek to curtail its sacred place in Hinduism and make it a matter of the past rather than the future. There are stories about herbs and vegetarian DNA (really!) and a young man’s shadow art that went viral on social media.
Estate Planning in the United Kingdom
Both are daunting tasks, especially for Hindu residents adjusting to a culture that uses terms such as “nil rate band” to describe how large an estate has to be before it is subject to inheritance tax: (£325,000 in 2010-11 for a single person, £650,000 for a married couple that has made a proper estate plan).
Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs website, where estate planning rules are listed, repeatedly pleads with its readers to “seek legal advice,” like an exasperated teacher telling her blank-faced students “it’s all in the text.” But it’s a good place to start.
Because so much is at stake, HHE presents a few estate planning basics its UK supporters should know.
1. If your estate is not vulnerable to estate tax, you should still have a will or a trust that specifies how you want your estate distributed. Otherwise, the courts will impose an impersonal formula that may or may not reflect your wishes.
2. Married couples need a written estate plan, even though no tax is imposed on the death of the first spouse. Without a plan, large estates may be vulnerable to tax at the death of the second spouse if nothing is done to preserve the estate tax exemption of the first to die.
3. Those who have lost a spouse and then remarried need to provide in writing for children from their first marriage. They should not assume their surviving second spouse will have the same concern for children from their prior marriage.
4. Written estate plans do more than distribute wealth; they can postpone distribution until heirs are capable of managing large sums prudently. They can also provide for heirs with mental or physical disabilities in ways that do not unwittingly jeopardize other benefits their heirs may be receiving.
5. If you own your own business, your estate plan may help you reduce the value transferred of business assets passed to heirs and so reduce possible estate tax.
6. Single people need written plans, otherwise their assets may go to those who don’t need them, such as well-to-do parents, rather than to others who do, such as struggling siblings.
7. Unless directed by your written estate plan, the court will ignore good causes you have supported for years and close friends you want to remember.
8. Your written plan allows you to appoint executors and trustees. Without an estate plan, the court may appoint someone you would never have chosen for these sensitive and demanding roles.
9. The appointment of guardians for bereaved children—among the touchiest of estate planning issues—can be accomplished through a will. You can also specify financial support for the children’s maintenance and education.
These basic rules only scratch the surface of the tangle of regulations governing estate planning in the UK. What is clear is that the economic meltdown has made written estate plans more urgent than ever. A recent study of 3,000 adult UK residents by the London law firm Seddons showed that one in ten had been recently involved in a dispute following a death. One in five said they feared they would not be treated fairly, and one in four felt they would end up with nothing.
Marvin Simons, the head of Dispute Resolutions at Seddons, blames the rise in disputes on the current economic climate. People are “so much more concerned about money and property values being so depressed, [it] is only likely to result in an escalation of these problems.”
HHE encourages estate planning, but not just for tax and economic reasons. For Hindus in the UK and elsewhere, estate planning documents are instruments of family peace. What Shakespeare wrote in Sonnet 18 can be applied to your written estate plan: “So long as men can breathe or eyes can see/ So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.”
Visit the HHE website at HHEonline.org.
Help Move Iraivan Forward
You Can Help Sponsor the Perimeter Wall
❏ One pillar section: $15,000
❏ One panel section: $30,000
To learn about this and other tools for spiritual living, study The Master Course trilogy
Thanks to Our May Temple Builders in 17 Countries
Nine Month Summary: For the nine months of September to May, our minimum monthly goal was $585,000. Excluding contributions directed toward special projects, we received actual contributions of $618,188.70. .
|Building Fund Donations|
|Marie & R. Bhanugopan||US$108.00|
|D. Karthigesu Family||100.00|
|Gunavinthan Siva Thirumalai||100.00|
|Essen Subramanian Valayten||2.78|
|Ron & Jennifer Burke||50.00|
|Changam & Kamachi Naidu||50.00|
|Nagarajan & Shamini Pillay||775.00|
|Mr. & Mrs. Pranavan||25.00|
|Vijayarani & Thiru Satkunendran||316.88|
|Naguleswary & Manickam Senthivel||110.00|
|Thambimuttoo & Thavam Sivagnanam||51.00|
|Sayanthan & Anupama Sivanathan||11.00|
|Sara K. Sivasurier||138.64|
|Nagula & Sutha Suthaker||101.00|
|Cristina Ma Puja Canducci||20.00|
|Thinageri & Kumaresh Batumalai||72.93|
|Rathidevi & Veerasamy Batumallah||50.00|
|Sai Janany, Chandran Ramamurthy & Kalpana Devasagayam||40.19|
|Kavin Kirav, Leena Lakshmi Devasagayam & Anand Kumar Letchumana||40.19|
|Yoga Rubini & Chandra Ganth Family||12.50|
|R. Jayakumar & Yoga Bhavani Family||12.50|
|Uma Dewi & Dinesh Kumar Jayaram||14.57|
|M. Shanmuganathan & A. Kamalambikai||25.00|
|Nanda Kumar & Hema||13.41|
|Amaraysh, Kumutha & Jarry Lai||13.41|
|Deevesh & Likel, Bathmavathy Batumalai & Ramesh Murthi||13.41|
|Hitesvar Skandanatha Murugesu||13.41|
|Rasiah Vallipuram & Pathumanithi Nagalingam||26.79|
|Achi & Suriakala Naidu||19.51|
|M. Suranthiran Naidu||34.81|
|Mohanavilashiny & Navukarasu||13.41|
|Yehanthini & Siva Taranee Navukarasu||13.41|
|S. & Nirmala Raja||14.63|
|Supramaniam Ramoo & In Memory of Neelavathy Thangavelu||26.79|
|Raagini Ravindren & Senthil Ravindren||13.41|
|Jayaraj Kantharaj & Saranraj S-O Jayabalathilagam||16.10|
|B. S. Selvakone||51.00|
|Ambikabathi Shanmugam Pillay||25.00|
|Raja Singam Raja Ratnam & Shreema Rasiah||26.79|
|Roselia Simon - Kulamani Ganesha||82.00|
|Mohana Sundari & Sivasekaran||26.79|
|A. Sockalingam & Chandrasekari||26.79|
|Devi & the late Selvadurai Subramaniam||13.41|
|S. & Santhi Subramaniam||14.63|
|S. Sugumaran & Sarasammah||29.26|
|Remalah & A. Thinathayalan||13.41|
|Vikneswaran A. Vinsent||26.79|
|Shree Saroja Devi Doorgiat||2.78|
|Amrit Singh Jaypal||6.94|
|Seedha Lutchmee Moonesawmy||2.78|
|Siven Barlen Mootoosamy||1.39|
|Vimaley Chellen Mootoosamy||1.39|
|Naden Seeneevasen Pillay||1.39|
|Prekash & Sabita Baladien||15.00|
|Anil Ananda Badhwar||10.00|
|Fremont Lawrence & Toshadevi Nataraj||61.00|
|Vaiyapuri Kamala Devi||50.00|
|S.G. Nathan Narasa||14.63|
|Sivakumar, Lavanya & Easan Saravan Sivakumar||400.00|
|Kavitha Darshini & Amitpal Singh||72.35|
|Gary & Radica Asha Yee-Fong||35.00|
|Shree Vishna Rasiah & Sharmila Harry||26.79|
|Clive & Puvaneswary Roberts||175.00|
|Golden Gate Mission||40.50|
|Adi & Asha Alahan||25.00|
|Durvasa & IsaniAlahan||225.00|
|Elvin & Cindy Angulo||101.00|
|Harjot Singh Attri||25.00|
|Kaika & Nilufer Clubwala||101.00|
|Shyamadeva & Peshanidevi Dandapani||51.00|
|Janakbhai R. Dave||50.00|
|Chellappa & Banu Devi Deva||25.00|
|Amarnath & Latha Devarmanai||101.00|
|Chandra R. Dhruv||106.00|
|Will Davis & Mary Rose Gallagher||11.00|
|Suketu & Mita Gandhi||51.00|
|Hiranya & Sarasvathi Devi Gowda||515.00|
|Toshadeva & Kamala Guhan||36.00|
|Kriya & Sharyn Haran||120.00|
|Shakti Shanti Hee||101.00|
|Ashok & Rupa Kakkar||105.00|
|Namit & Nidhi Kapoor||21.00|
|Srinivas & Shanthi Karri||40.00|
|Ajay S. Kathirithamby||501.00|
|Anil & Devajyothi Kondapi||51.00|
|Gerard & Zhena Linsmeier||54.00|
|Laura Devi Marks||108.00|
|Dave & Cindy McGonagle||25.00|
|Sanathana & Surekha Murthy||1,000.00|
|Palani & Selvarany Nadarajah||15.00|
|Nitya & Becky Nadesan||141.00|
|Manish M. Naidu||11.11|
|Sagar & Kingel Naik||101.00|
|Rama Chandran & Rema Nair||11,000.00|
|Sundar & Latha Natarajan||121.00|
|Sanjaya K. Nath||11.00|
|Emma & Narendra Nemivant||25.00|
|Radhai & Rajan Odayar||25.00|
|Satya & Savitri Palani||21.00|
|Easvan & Devi Param||101.00|
|Janaka & Bhavani Param||25.00|
|Praful & Ranjan Patel||251.00|
|Vinay & Hansa R. Patel||101.00|
|Ravi & Sasikala Penumarthy||501.00|
|Richard Henry Pratt||100.00|
|Deva & Gayatri Rajan||1,001.00|
|Mohan Deepak Ram||119.00|
|Deiva & Mala Ramachandran||101.00|
|Ravi & Renuka Ramakrishna||108.00|
|Jeyashree & Venkat Ramakrishnan||50.00|
|Rajesh & Yatra Raman||11.00|
|Partab & Chandra Ramsinghani||27.00|
|Usha & U. Prabhakar Rao||51.00|
|Rao V. Remala||251.00|
|Annie & Mark Ruiz||108.00|
|Cliff & Kathy Runge||50.00|
|In memory of Manonmany Sangarapillai||200.00|
|Darmaguhan & Shivali Satgunasingam||100.00|
|Laurie & Mark Scurich||101.00|
|Aran & Valli Sendan||25.00|
|Muthu & Nandini Senthilkumar||101.00|
|Deva & Amala Seyon||51.00|
|Shilpa & Ashit Jagdishchandra Shah||101.00|
|Sivakami Shanmugasundaram Family||111.00|
|Nathan & Sulena Sivananda||108.00|
|Joseph W. Steelman||400.00|
|Nandi Deva Sundaram||50.00|
|Shanthi Suresh & Sures Ramamurti||402.00|
|Sugi & Shiva Swaminathan||1,001.00|
|Sivam U. Thillaikanthan||40.00|
|Marianne Hvidsten Thompson||108.00|
|Somaskanda & Pooja Thyagaraja||101.00|
|Rashmi & Sameer Verkhedkar||101.00|
|David & Shelah Young||51.00|
|Total Building Fund||$54,253.65|
|Iraivan Temple Endowment|
|Total Endowment Funds||$75.00|
|Special Project Donations:|
|A. Vikneswaran K.||25.00|
|Total Special Project Donations||614.76|
Click Here to Donate Now!
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