Over the retreat we brought in the first of the lumber that we milled in April 2009 and set up to air dry. Here is a photo of several of the piles: camphor, mango, monkeypod, pine and blue gum eucalyptus. These are all trees that would otherwise have been abandoned and left to rot. But the monastery is rescuing them and milling them for future use.
This is the pile we dismantled and brought in to the shop. Our motivation was to make room for the next milling, to clean this stand so it can be used to dry more lumber from the milling that we planned for some new logs. This wood is monkeypod, harvested from a logs that Vel Alahan gifted to the monastery from a tree that he had to remove from his yard. We were happy to see that the wood dried without twists or bends and is free of insects. At 12-14 per cent humidity, it is well dry enough for use in our climate.
The interior of the pile showing the beauty of the wood. A carpenter came by one day and said he had seen monkeypod slabs before but had never seen it in “board form.”
Sivakatirswami is helping with the loading and hauling in a utility vehicle. The stands are just a few hundred feet from the carpentry shop.
Kumarswami trims one end of each board square with a sharp 6-point vintage hand saw. Having the end square is helpful because we are storing the dry wood on end.
Here is where most of this wood is going to be stacked, just outside the wall of the carpentry shop. Later we hope to have a shed to keep the wood, but for now we are finding nooks and crannies here and there.
This is Acharya Kumarswami smiling. He’s happy about how the wood turned out and looks forward to using it.
These logs will be sliced into boards during the next milling in the coming months. They came from 25-year old trees that a landowner was cutting down across Koamoo road a year ago. Hearing the saws, we drove over and spoke to the millers. They were happy to release the logs to us to use for lumber, as it saved them from having the cut them up into small pieces and hauling them away. Plus our big tractor made their work a lot easier overall.
All the stickers and other elements of the carefully leveled pile are now ready to receive another batch of boards when the time comes. It’s very low tech, and it works.
Jai Ganesa! so great to keep us all well informed and educated on what it takes to save our resources and preserve our environment.It is so much hard work also and I really appreciate the example that the monks are giving our young people especially the young men of our lineage.Love and wonder in your smile Swamiji.Thank you.Aum Shanti
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.