Guruthondu Day at Iraivan Temple

Recently the monastery observed Guruthond Day. It is a unique day every three months, when the whole monastery joins together on a single project determined by Bodhinatha.

This time the focus was on Iraivan Temple. The wooden railing which goes around the temple's foundation has been in need of replacement. The entire monastery formed up into 4 teams, each taking a section. In an amazing whirlwind of forty hands and forty legs and 20 brains all working in concert, in about 6 hours the old railing was dismantled and a new one built in its place.

As a small side project, another group of monks worked to clear the path down to the river, whcih we call "Bali Hai" which had become blocked with debris after some recent clearing in the area. Now monks and pilgrims can once again make their way down to the sacred Wailua for meditation or Ganga sadhana. Aum Namah Sivaya.

Perimeter Wall Progress in India

Below is a 12-foot-long section of the Perimeter Wall for Iraivan Temple. In all, there are some 40 of these that make up the 485-foot-long wall.

Today in Bengaluru the team is working on carving of the pillar sections, the stones on the left and right in the photo below. They have brought a set of them into the sheds for doing the more ornamental work.

Also in this slideshow in the same shed the silpis are working on the two final stones of the Nandi Mandapam, which have small elephants near the bottom. These hand railings are on either side of the steps that a priest climbs to make offerings to Nandi and the balipeedam.

Readying the Floor

Months ago, with professional help, the GK team added concrete materials to make the original floor in the Media Studio both level and flat. In some places, this required almost 2" of leveler. Now, we are applying the subsequent layers of material in preparation for the ten, 10-foot wide vinyl flooring rolls, that we have on hand from Chicago. These will be installed on the 28th through 30th of this month.
In these photos you see first the blue epoxy super sealer in place, called ChapcoDefender.
That is followed by Chapco MP primer. After that, we will trowel on Chapco SmoothCoat, a cement-based skimming material that forms the basis for the Permabond 4600 vinyl adhesive that glues down the vinyl.
The primer enables the skimcoat to stick to the blue sealer, and the SmoothCoat fills any dips or imperfections, creating a more perfect surface that is compatible with the vinyl adhesive.

Carving a Garden Map and Tropical Pedestal in India

We recently receive a report from Jiva Rajasankara and our team in Bangaluru. Here they show the carving of a map of Kauai and its base, designed so the four sides show the fish, whales, dolphins and birds of the island. Because it is not Iraivan temple, the silpis are allowed to use machines, which would not be permitted for Iraivan sculpting.
This also applies to the wall around the temple, called the perimeter wall. The entire chisel technology, which is thousands of years old, has been transformed in the last decade, a change lead by our own Iraivan team.
Iraivan's Nandi Mandapam has four handrails, two large with elephants and two smaller ones with yallis carved.  The larger ones were designs taken from a Chola temple railing which is over a thousand years old.
Jiva writes: "This is the last smaller yesti for the Nandi Mandapam. by viewing the video you can see the detailed intricate work that is going into making San Marga Iraivan temple so special.  I can boldly say that this will be the last temple that will display hand work to such high standards. Everyone connected to Iraivan and helping to support it can be proud that they are contributing towards a completion of a  special temple. The last of a long Indian era." Aum. Jiva.

New Roofing

Over the last few days, our neighbor Bobby and his team of Garden Island Roofing, have been working to replace the old roof above Bodhinatha's office and the Siddhidata Kulam's office. The old tile has been in need of replacement for some time. This new roof matches the Media Studio's which Bobby also installed. It also has a delightful copper trim which follows its edge.

Bobby and his team are very professional, laying down new roofing as fast as the old roofing is taken up, ensuring the roof is not left uncovered in Kauai's unpredictable and rainy weather.

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