On the land across from Iraivan that we call “Himalayan Acres” or in Hawaiian, “Kalepa” the monks have entered into a collaborative agreement with a professional nurseryman, Scott Young, who will use some of the land to nurture his own collection of specimen trees, while training the monks and caring for more trees that will belong to the monastery.
This phase, Acharya Arumugaswami and Sadhaka Satyanatha have been working shoulder to shoulder with Scott, soaking up all his expertise along with Jonathan Anderson who also helps us on Kalepa projects. Together with Scott and his workers, the team are planting over 350 trees over a period of about 8 days.
This area is protected by a wind break of iron wood trees we planted years ago. It has been mowed and prepared for tree planting.
The auger on our case tractor is gigantic. Nearly 3 feet wide it makes a massive hole, perfect for planting large trees.
There is Jonathan Anderson standing by.
That is a row of areca palms, highly prized by landscapers.
Jonathan signals the tractor operator that the auger, after digging the hole, is up, clear and ready to move to the next spot.
A picture perfect hole for a specimen tree.
We have hauled over 200 trees so far from Scott’s nursery to our land.
These are various species of palms that are prized by land developers and landscaping professionals. After a home or building project is complete, these trees are planted, some of them nearly full grown, to provide instant landscaping.
More trees arriving. These have been raised so far in large plastic bags. Now they will get to spread their roots into Mother Earth without constriction.
This is yet another increment in the monastery’s effort to build up its agricultural endowment in order to sustaining this important property immediately across from Iraivan temple and also to just be an example of Earth-Friendliness. Gurudeva said everyone should plant 12 trees a year, if possible.
After a few years, this palm will have a good solid trunk and be ready for sale.
"Stand strong for Saivism." The nature of life for Saivites is to turn work into worship, to turn the secular into the sacred. Each day give a little extra warmth, humanness and upliftment to others. Every day is a holy day, all day long. We want to follow our religion even in our dreams. If we help someone, we're worshiping. Wherever we are, that's a place of worship. "To the Saivite Hindu all of life is sacred. All of life is religion."