In India today dozens of stone craftsmen are working on Iraivan projects, and other sculptures for the monastery. Here the YA step, one of the NAMASIVAYA steps up to the sanctum, is being carved. The finished side is away from us.
Meanwhile, the major project in Bengaluru is the carving of the Nandi Mandapam, shown here (though the 45-foot-tall flagpole is just barely seen at the top of the drawing). This little temple within a temple will have some of the most elaborate and detailed sculpting of all, and a charming Nandi will sit contentedly within his stall.
Nandi the bull represents the ego or personal identity of each soul and also the desire for realization of God. He sits in front of the flag pole, beholding Siva night and day.
This is the top of one of the 12 pillars.
The pillars are small, as you can see.
Part of the roof stones.
It's a large project that most of the silpis in India are now focused on under the able direction of the Jiva Rajasankara family.
The blessings of Lord Murugan awaken wisdom which resides in his chakra. "Pray to Lord Murugan to unravel the great mysteries of the universe." When we get emotional we lose touch with our wisdom. Murugan inspires penance to soften karmas and purify the mind, chitta-shuddhi. If you do kavadi in the right spirit, to get the full blessing, have in mind specific misdeeds, apologize to the deity, learn from it, promise to do your best. Visions are still happening. Feeling the energy of the deity is stronger during festivals such as Skanda Shashti.