Siva held His own celebration last night at sunset, filling the sky with an amazing and rarely seen display of vivacity. This iPhone photo was taken from the monastery courtyard as several monks gathered to silently witness it.
Another miraculous sky event occured during our full moon retreat. Here is the report:
We had a surprising spectacle last night, right after night fell, a rainbow caused by the rising full moon shining on a drizzle-shower moving toward Waialeale.
The spectrum was very pale, so it looked like an albino rainbow, shining there, in the night. Billions of tiny raindrops each reflecting back an image of the moon. Billions of little moons shining over Waialeale and Iraivan.
None of us had ever seen or even heard of such a phenomenon.
It is in Wikipedia under Moonbow. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moonbow. But all the references and photos there are of moonbows caused by spray at the foot of a waterfall and none of them is a full arc. Whereas ours was a rain rainbow and it was a full arc.
This little bridge is new. It crosses the stream and waterfall in Rishi Valley.
Tandu Sivanathan helped Palaniswami to build it over the retreat, giving pilgrims a new way to walk over to Iraivan Temple.
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.