Saturday evening is for visiting the Iraivan Temple carving site. Here Bodhinatha is greeted.
A view from Jiva Rajashankara’s new house of the carving site. In front is the silpi team who have come to see Bodhinatha. At right is the carving shed where various projects are going on. At back left is the huge granite saw that Artha Enterprises, Jiva’s company, has set up for their work. Iraivain, of course, has been entirely hand carved.
Bodhinatha with the three slipis who will come in April to Kauai to work on Iraivan Temple.
The second course of the Nandi Mandapam, which is about 15 feet square.
This stone is for the “Ya” step of Iraivan temple. The original carved step was done incorrectly--too small in a critical dimension, and has to be redone.
Iraivan Temple’s stone bell. Discussion is under way as to how to hang it in the temple and whether a stone chain is strong enough, or if brass will have to be used.
An ornate pillar of the Nandi Mandapam. While the Mandapam is small compared to the temple’s main structure, it is intricately carved.
Bodhinatha with the teak pole for the temple’s kodimaram.
We meet this fine scholar of Sri Vidya, whose name we did not write down. Hinduism Today has been wanting to do a story on Sri Vidya for some years, and never quite succeeded. The scholar offered a simple explanation for our failing to find a clear statement of Sri Vidya: “It’s a secret.” However, he said, those following this deep philosophy based in the worship of the Sri Yantra and in mantras are wanting to make it better understood. In April, 2009, they plan a meeting of 1,000 scholars of Sri Vidya in Mysore. From this scholar’s explanation, Sri Vidya philosophy is a form of monistic theism, and not all that different from what Gurudeva teaches, the oneness of all, identity of Siva and Shakti, etc.
Within our Saiva Siddhanta Holy Scriptures the Saiva Agamas explain the basis of temple ceremonies and worship plus yoga and jnana. The Tirukural was considered by Gurudeva to be "the most accessible and relevant sacred text." In it are practical and helpful guidelines for our conduct in every day life. The point of family life is to gain steady improvement, forever, in self control in the midst of responsibilities in the fulfillment of family dharma. Meanwhile, not taking detachment too far but taking it in the sense of spiritually looking for happiness, not outside in other people or possessions, the world, but inside ourselves and then sharing it with family and friends. "We regard the writings of our satgurus as scripture."
Path to Siva, Lesson 20
Tirukural, Introduction and Contents
Tirukural, Chapter 15 Possession of Self-Control
"The temple enables us to feel the presence of God, Gods and devas." We use our inner eyes to see what's going on in the temple, the three worlds. In the temple we're being good dvaitists in the dimfi perspective, focused in bhakti upon God Siva. In meditation we're monists, in the shumif perspective. We claim our oneness with Siva, Sivoham, I am Siva. In surrender, shrinking the ego through devotion, we have a realization that we're not the doer, that Siva is doing it all. Siva's energy comes through our soul.