Monastery Twitter Updates for 2011-09-10

  • We just met with Renate Seldon who is going to make a 90-second introductory video about the monastery for our new website. #

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Iraivan's Nandi Mandapam Kodungai Carving

A few days back we Selvanathan Stapathi and Shekar Stapathi visited our worksite. Here, we have Shekar Stapathi marking the thamam ( Lotus Petal) design on the kodungai stone.

A detail view of the lotus petal design. The kodungai stone is also called the sun shade stone. It sits on top of the beam stone at approximately 11ft high.

Here Selvanathan Stapathi makes corrections to Shekar Stapathi's marking.

Sittayah works on the new design just drawn. He is one the silpis who returned from the last batch of workers who left Kauai after 2 years of jointing works.

This is the ornamental design which comes on the front face of the kodungai. This is the first time that this design are being incorporated into stone work. The last rememberd versions of the same were practically carved only during the last Chola and Nayakas era of ruling.

Bodhinatha Is With Ganesha in Utah

Om Sivaya, everyone,

Saturday morning at temple for Visarjana. Blessings of many food offerings than a puja done by all the children on trays in groups of about six lead by the priest. I gave thirty-minute talk. Next, after circumambulating the temple, we paraded to a nearby pond and placed all the clay Ganeshas in the water. 300-400 devotees were in attendance.


Meanwhile for Satguru Speaks fans, a recent marvelous upadesha from Bodhinatha on Siva Meditation has been posted. See the link on the sidebar.

Today is the last day of our phase.
We are have a three-day retreat and
will return, Sun One, Wednesday, September 14th.

Mastering the Flow of Water

Years ago, Gurudeva gave each of the kulams at the monastery affirmations for their sivathondu. Water is life’s most precious natural resource and the Siddhidata Kulam (SK) is charged to take care of the stream the flows through the Aadheenam from the Wailua Reservoir just one mile north of San Marga. The Wailua reservoir is still under repair and the SK continues to use this opportunity while the stream is dry to make improvements.

Today the Siddhidata Kulam is working on an emergency water management system for what we call “Narmada Stream.”

Excess water from extremely heavy rains , added to the normal water flow of the stream, can threaten the integrity of the walls of the waterway and contribute to flooding at the Aadheenam itself. A sluice gate is being installed on the stream bank just below Muruga Hill out on San Marga, to handle this problem. This gate is place just a short distance from where the stream enters our property. Here you can see Sadhaka Rajanatha working on the base of the sluice-way. During heavy rains the we can open the gate and let water that would normally continue on to damage the fragile banks of the stream or flood the aadheenam, run down to the lower ponds by Iraivan and from there to the Wailua River.

Visiting Arkansas

After Chicago they went to Arkansas. Siddhanathaswami writes:

We had a wonderful visit with Jim and Terri Coleman at their facility in Hot Springs Village, Arkansas.

Our Iraivan crystal was found by Jim in the 70s. They were gracious hosts that spent about 2.5 hours with us! We arrived at their rock shop on the side of Highway 7.

Jim, a real miner with the back pain to prove it, greeted us then took us to his processing facility near his home.

He showed us what he had in stock then immediately started with fantastic stories. Crystals grow in an amazing way. They grow in veins of clay between sandstone walls. They only grow pointing north-south on both sides of the sandstone walls.

The large face of the single-pointed crystals points down going towards the center of the vein, then points up to the bottom of the vein. The largest crystals form at the center, but in many cases, break off and move through the clay to the bottom.

Our Iraivan Swayambhu crystal was found at the bottom of a huge 40-ft vein. Once a large vein is found, the mining is mostly done by hand do avoid chipping and breaking the crystals. When the crystal, or crystal cluster is large, it can take days to expose it for transport. Then they are cleaned through multiple washings, baths and drying in the sun.

Jim then took us to a vista of the mine and pointed to where he found our crystal. He said, “follow this end of the water that you can see and come this way about 40 feet, then up another 40 feet.

That where I found your crystal.” When they first started mining, it was a small hill, so the crystal was actually quite deep in the mine.

Archives are now available through 2001. Light colored days have no posts. 1998-2001 coming later.

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