Saturday evening is for visiting the Iraivan Temple carving site. Here Bodhinatha is greeted.
A view from Jiva Rajashankara’s new house of the carving site. In front is the silpi team who have come to see Bodhinatha. At right is the carving shed where various projects are going on. At back left is the huge granite saw that Artha Enterprises, Jiva’s company, has set up for their work. Iraivain, of course, has been entirely hand carved.
Bodhinatha with the three slipis who will come in April to Kauai to work on Iraivan Temple.
The second course of the Nandi Mandapam, which is about 15 feet square.
This stone is for the “Ya” step of Iraivan temple. The original carved step was done incorrectly–too small in a critical dimension, and has to be redone.
Iraivan Temple’s stone bell. Discussion is under way as to how to hang it in the temple and whether a stone chain is strong enough, or if brass will have to be used.
An ornate pillar of the Nandi Mandapam. While the Mandapam is small compared to the temple’s main structure, it is intricately carved.
Bodhinatha with the teak pole for the temple’s kodimaram.
We meet this fine scholar of Sri Vidya, whose name we did not write down. Hinduism Today has been wanting to do a story on Sri Vidya for some years, and never quite succeeded. The scholar offered a simple explanation for our failing to find a clear statement of Sri Vidya: “It’s a secret.” However, he said, those following this deep philosophy based in the worship of the Sri Yantra and in mantras are wanting to make it better understood. In April, 2009, they plan a meeting of 1,000 scholars of Sri Vidya in Mysore. From this scholar’s explanation, Sri Vidya philosophy is a form of monistic theism, and not all that different from what Gurudeva teaches, the oneness of all, identity of Siva and Shakti, etc.
"Adjust yourself to the realization that you are a divine being, a self-effulgent, radiant being of light."
Jyoti is the Sanskrit word for inner light. To bestow on devotees terms that were more specific, Gurudeva developed the Shum Language of Meditation. In Shum the word for the light that lights up the mind is balikana. During Shum meditation there is an indrawing of forces to realize balikana, a moon-like glow, leading to iftye a deeper kind of inner light which, in turn, leads to milinaka, a sustained iftye which doesn't go away and can be sustained after we've finished our meditation.