The monastery recently enjoyed a visit from Kehaulani and her group of hula haumana (students). Many years ago it was Kehaulani who did the Hawaiian blessing for the building of Iraivan Temple. This group of students are her core pupils in the learning of Hawaiian hula, ceremonies and chants. They come from Kauai and other parts of Hawaii but mostly from Japan where hula has become quite popular in recent decades.
Upon arrival Kehaulani was gifted with a wooden bowl made by the monks from camphor wood. She and her troupe were then given a short introduction to the monastery, for many of them hadn't visited before. They were soon brought to Kadavul Temple where Kehaulani offered a beautiful Hawaiian chant to the Gods Lono, Ku and Kane (Ganesha Muruga and Siva respectively). They also performed a short hula as a group and offered a ti leaf garland for Nataraja. Next they were brought out to the flagpole area for their main hula. There is a specific Hawaiian chant dedicated to Pihanakalani ("where Heaven meets Earth") which they perform here along with chants to Mount Waialeale and the Wailua River.
Ardra Darshana is a festival honoring Lord Siva, the supreme God for Saivites and creator of all that was, is and will be. The monks, and grihasta devotees from all over the world, are gathering to watch Kadavul Nataraja receive abhishekam and blast darshan right back at them.
It is this great being that we seek, that we treasure with all our might. The formless, spaceless, timeless, limitless, un-restricted Mahadeva that dances from one plane to another will move rhythmically as he/she always does and we will be there to see it as we do every year around this time.
The sages have proclaimed that devotion to Ishvara brings samadhi. Saints have shouted His name with five letters and munis silently creep under the protection of this great God's breadth. They live for Siva's shakti, my shakti, your shakti, our shakti.
Siva is love and Siva is our destiny. From Him we came and out into the world we go, on a long path back to Him. A quote from an inner-plane being captures the essence of our journey and will make up the bulk of the slideshow captions.
This morning we discovered a patch of mushrooms, type unknown, happily growing in the midst of our new avocado orchard.
Hawaii State Senator Gabbard visited the monastery December 9th for a short tour and lunch while on a tour of the local water system and other agricultural projects on Kauai. Sen. Gabbard is Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard's father, the first Hindu in the US Congress. The senator met first with Jerry Ornellas, president of the East Kauai Water Users Cooperative (which operates the ditch that goes through the monastery) at Upper Kapahi Reservoir, then traveled to Wailua Reservoir, both recently renovated by the state, and then to the monastery.
Recently a local journalist interviewed several of our monks for a short piece in Flux Hawaii, a local magazine that focuses on our islands' arts and culture. To the authors surprise, a photo of our monks was chosen for the cover. Follow this link to read the short but sweet article:
Archives are now available through 2001. Light colored days have no posts. 1998-2001 coming later.