Recently Sannyasin Siddhanathaswami, Natyam Mayuranatha and Natyam Jayanatha organized a small trip to the other side of our garden island for our resident taskforcers. Everyone left from the Aadheenam at 7:30am and made there way south around to the dry side of the island. In full, auspicious form a huge rainbow followed them the whole way, ever-present out front the car. Following an all-important stop for some coffee and cocoa, the team drove up the back slope of the mountain. After many twists and turns they arrived at the Waimea Canyon lookout for a spectacular view.
"When we look at the beautiful creations of nature, we see how lovely the mind can be. Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami"
Some of our monks recently took a journey to the other side of the island and up into the mountains to Koke'e State Park. One of the unique things about the Hawaiian Islands is their temperate diversity. Drive a few hours and you can find a totally different climate. Up atop the mountain, instead of heavy, humid jungles, you'll find yourself in a climate much akin to Northern California or Oregon on a perfectly cool, sunny summer day.
One of our favorite hikes is called the Berry Flat trail. As you may have guessed, it isn't too strenuous, but it does offer berries and bountiful beauty. This unique trail boasts thousands of 40-150 year old redwood trees—an unexpected site on our island. This happened to be the perfect time of year too. Nearly the entire area was full of blooming ginger flowers, called Kahili Ginger. For those that have never experienced them, they smell kind of like tulips. So if you can imagine being submerged in the scents of tulips and redwoods, then you can get a pretty good idea of the experience.
The Interfaith Roundtable on Kauai recently held their small gathering at the Aadheenam in our outdoor Banyan Mandapam. Vel Alahan is the usual Hindu representitive for the group, but he was busy today so Deva Seyon filled in. He met with the group and took them on a tour of the grounds. Deva writes:
Today I was filling in for Vel who usually attends the monthly meeting. The IROK exists as a forum of local representatives from different spiritual, religious, and spiritual educational organizations on Kauai who gather to share their faiths and explore their diversity while focusing on similarities. They work to promote understanding, respect and harmony across different spiritual, religious and cultural groups in our shared community of Kaua'i. Gurudeva and Bodhinatha helped them and actually attended their meetings in their early formative years when their numbers were small and they were just getting organized. Now Vel attends the regular monthly meetings as our Hindu representative but the group still invites Satguru to special events. IROK stands for Interfaith Roundtable Of Kauai. This month they requested to visit the monastery and view Iraivan Temple, Kadavul Temple and meet with Satguru to ask questions. They had a wonderful time with Satguru.
Recently we arranged to reprint 1000, 16 x 20 inch Aloha poster for all of the island’s 700 school classrooms. You may recall that Gurudeva, in collaboration with then Mayor Marianne Kusaka, designed a poster in 1998 for use in the local schools as a way of passing on the meaning of the Aloha Spirit to the children of Kauai. It features five Hawaiian words that begin with the the five letters of the word Aloha and the quote “Aloha, It’s Kauai’s Spirit.” The five words, popularized by a respected Hawaiian elder, Auntie Pilahi Paki, are: Akahai – meaning kindness (grace), to be expressed with tenderness; Lokahi – meaning unity (unbroken), to be expressed with harmony; ‘Olu‘olu – meaning agreeable (gentle), to be expressed with pleasantness; Ha‘aha‘a – meaning humility (empty), to be expressed with modesty; and Ahonui – meaning patience (waiting for the moment), to be expressed with perseverance.
As our CyberCadets know, the Iraivan Temple Builders' Memorial is proceeding this summer. Above is the latest work, three pieces that arrived from Loveland, Colorado. In the captions we tell the happenings of the last few days.