State of the Church Address 2003, Part 3

In part 3 of his State of the Church address for 2003, Bodhinatha continues with two more of the Church's focuses for the coming yearTaking the wood and sand down around Iraivan Temple, finishing the inner sanctum in September and making a few other significant improvements around the Aadheenam property, namely a 12' tall Dakshinamurthi with 4 sages next to Iraivan Temple, a 12.5' granite Vel for Muruga Hill and beginning to plant our 400 acre property, known as Himalayan Acres.

Unedited Transcript:

Another major focus for the year, of course, is Iraivan Temple. It made good progress this last year. This coming year we have two wonderful things to look forward to. One is that the wood and the sand that is around the temple, protecting it, is already in the process of coming down. It will continue to come down and should be down in a month or so, I believe, so that we will be able to see the entire temple while standing there, all at once. You might want to sit down when you do that the first time, it is going to be so beautiful. As Palaniswami says, "We saw each beautiful item go into the temple. Now we are going to see it all at once. It is going to be very spectacular." We have that to look forward to in the near future.

Then the sanctum itself, the entire inner sanctum, garbhagriha mukhamandapam is scheduled to be finished in September, donations permitting. That should be really a landmark for the temple, to have the sanctum totally done and standing there, make it really look fantastic. Guess it will be visually complete all at once. Again, it will be kind of overwhelming to see it all at one time.

Those are two very important physical aspects of Iraivan temple. Otherwise there is a general increase in activity of the global membership in terms of fund raising for Iraivan, promoting Iraivan temple. We saw that here with the calendar, beautiful calendar the Hotranatha family did to fund raise for the temple here this year. In Malaysia, we have Iraivan Day on January 26th, . They are having an all-day display and presentation for Iraivan temple. We will be there on that day, giving a talk. We are hoping to introduce lots of new people to the temple which will lead in coming months to some significant donations coming in from that country.

With the temple coming up so nicely, we felt we better keep improving the rest of the property here so that it all comes up together. So we have two major improvements coming in. One is the large granite Dakshinamurthi, which is 12 ft. tall. I mean this is huge, really, really tall, massive Dakshinamurthi, which will go under the banyan tree there near where the pattarai is, where we used to do the ceremony. It is going to be installed out there. We are going to have Siva and the four sages coming. It is ready to ship, so it should be here in a few months. Totally carved, ready to ship. That is going to add a beautiful dimension to that part of the property, very near the path of the Saiva Saints. Something very spectacular to view this, totally complete at this time.

Them we have the Vel. 12 1/2 ft. granite Vel also finished, that is coming soon to go up on Muruga Hill. If you go out there at this time, you will see we are putting in the base. Nice cement, lava-rock base going in to be ready to receive that. We will install it at an auspicious time.

So, we will have two very nice improvements to the rest of our property coming up in the next couple of months.

As all of you here know but those listening don't, we are starting to plant our four hundred acres which we call Himalayan Acres, across the river. Some land that has come to us for agricultural use. We are already started with coconut trees and a few fruit trees and there will be a few more hardwood trees going in, in the next week. We are starting to plant it. Coconut trees take a while but others will be more visible, I think, sooner. But that is a wonderful part of bringing up the rest of the property. We are going to have some beautiful plants over there for everyone to enjoy.