This last three-day retreat was Purnima --the full moon. The monks took some time to put behind all the intense activity of the last weeks, unplug from the internet, leave behind civilization and take a camping trip. They went to famous Polihale — the most spectacular beach on the world’s most beautiful island, Kauai.
In the mostly deserted beach, the monks assembled a tent to protect them from the unforgiving Hawaiian sun. The sea was mellow and pleasant.
Here is the final result. Everything very neat and monastic.
Polihale is hardly accessible to the common tourist. It stays pristine, never crowded, and somehow gives us a taste of how Kauai was originally like.
We were rewarded with an unforgettable sunset. The sun only sets over the ocean on the other side of the island. From the monastery’s east side, we normally see the sunrise.
The night sky was so, so crisp and beautiful that we saw something we had never even heard of: Venus reflected over the placid waters of the ocean. A few minutes later we saw our first Venus-set, which just like the Sun-set makes the planet turn orange as it disappears.
"Temples with multiple deities can be confusing, especially for today's Hindu youth. For clarity, we need to bring forward a more precise understanding of the different Hindu denominations and how the different Gods are viewed from within each denomination. For spiritual advancement it is best to focus on one deity and get to the vibration that deity. When we hear teachings from various Hindus, it is important to understand and identify which denomination they are speaking from. This will avert confusion when that teaching gets contradicted in a different context where someone is talking about the same subject but from a different philosophical background."
Bodhinatha reviews the main characteristic of Saivite philosophy and practice with an indepth focus on the four stages of religions evolution, chariya, kriya, yoga and jnana. He highlights how this shows that Saiva Siddhanta is unique and quite from the modern practice of Hinduism as Vedanta