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We Are Safe!

As the map shows, our island of Kauai is about 200 miles away from Maui island, where the devastating fires happened on August 9th. It was the most destructive disaster in the history of Hawaii, with the loss of over 80 lives and total destruction of an entire town, Lahaina, with a population of 12,000. It is estimated that it will cost 5-6 billion dollars and decades to rebuild everything.

Many around the world have worried if the monastery is OK, and we want to assure everyone we are.

Nene Geese

We have a small flock of nene geese now hanging out on our Aadheenam property in various places. Short description from wikipedia-- The nene, also known as the nēnē or the Hawaiian goose, is a species of bird endemic to the Hawaiian Islands. The nene is exclusively found in the wild on the islands of Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Molokai, and Hawaii. In 1957, it was designated as the official state bird of the state of Hawaii.

Silpi Outing Included First Time Participant

It was time again for another island jaunt by our temple shilpis, and our Iraivan Temple priest, Pravin Kumar Gurukal, joined. It was his first opportunity since March to start seeing the beautiful environment of Kauai. On this sunny day they took a short walk around Nawiliwili Bay near the airport and visited a small lighthouse on the point.

Aerial Photos – May 2023

Aum Namah Sivaya

We recently took a short survey flight with our drone, attempting to map out some future improvements along San Marga. While up there we took a few other shots just for fun. From the air, we're continually reminded of how lush and pure our island environment is. A perfect place of prana and a plethora of pretty plants.

"The whole world is an ashram in which all are doing sadhana. We must love the world, which is God's creation. Those who despise, hate and fear the world do not understand the intrinsic goodness of all."

Coconut Husking Extravaganza and Recent Sunrise

After husking around 330 cocos for the Iraivan Pranapratishtha last month, the husking party took a break, but now we're back to husk another 250 or so for the final days of Mandala Puja from May 8--11.

Iraivan Temple Sivalinga Installation Ceremonies

As most of you already know, the large crystal Sivalinga has been “temporarily” residing in Kadavul Temple since August 1987, awaiting its move to the Iraivan Temple sanctum. Our architect, Selvanathan Sthapati, has indicated that now that the Iraivan Temple structure is complete and the 11,000-pound panchaloha Avudaiyar base has been moved into the inner sanctum, we need to move forward with installing the Sivalinga. Actually, Sthapati was more colorful in his urgings, reminding us that the temple is a living being, with a conception (Gurudeva’s three visions), a birth and a lifespan. And, he offered, we have waited long enough, to the point that the temple is like a pregnant woman who is two weeks overdue, and we can no longer delay the event. Based on that instruction from our Master Builder and guidance from India’s Sivacharyas, Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami has set the Sivalinga installation rituals for March 21-26, 2023. These historic rites will be professionally filmed and livestreamed on our youtube channel for everyone to have a front row seat wherever you live around the world.

A just-uploaded trailer video for the ceremonies can be viewed here. If you would like to plan ahead for watching the livestreams, here is the schedule of morning and afternoon streams: March 21 Morning Ceremonies 8:00 AM Start 12:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam Afternoon Ceremonies 3:00 PM Start 7:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam March 22 Morning Ceremonies 8:00 AM Start 12:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam Afternoon Ceremonies 3:00 PM Start 7:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam March 23 Morning Ceremonies 7:30 AM Start 12:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam Afternoon Ceremonies 3:00 PM Start 7:30 PM Distribution of Prasadam March 24 Morning Ceremonies 8:00 AM Start 12:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam Afternoon Ceremonies 3:00 PM Start 7:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam March 25 Morning Ceremonies 8:00 AM Start 12:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam Afternoon Ceremonies 3:00 PM Start 7:00 PM Distribution of Prasadam March 26 Morning Ceremonies 6:00 AM Start 10:19 AM Auspicious Moment 12:00 PM Anna Dhaanam

Access to Iraivan Temple for these installation ceremonies will be through the monastery, with cars utilizing our existing parking lot of 37 spaces. Our maximum capacity of confirmed attendees for the event has already been reached, based on the existing facilities of the Aadheenam and Iraivan Temple. Permitting greater attendance would create substantial issues for us with our neighbors and the county over traffic and parking.

The good news is that starting on March 28th and thereafter, all Saiva Siddhanta Church sishyas and those on a prearranged pilgrimage to Kauai Aadheenam will be able to attend a daily puja at Iraivan Temple, something we have been waiting for all these years.

After March 28 visitors to the Aadheenam who are not formal pilgrims, Saiva Siddhanta Church sishyas or students of Himalayan Academy can still access the rudraksha grove and the monastery entrance areas, including Kadavul Temple, the Meditation Banyan and the MiniMela gift shop. But they will not have the opportunity to attend the Iraivan Temple daily puja until we fully establish additional facilities at the rudraksha grove entrance, thus meeting county regulations to have more parking and bathrooms to accommodate greater numbers of visitors before we can host large crowds. This development is still a couple of years away. 

Construction Updates and Outing

A group of us were on Kauai's south side and visited with tortoises in a nature reserve in Koloa. They are raised to be like a replacement for an ancient animal that used to graze in the area and is now extinct. For a long time the entrance walkway just before the Kadavul Temple dhvajasthambha has been congested in the spot where the shoe racks and benches are kept. Our employees have just finished constructing a new covered pad next to the path, where visitors can sit and store their shoes. This will allow a free flow of traffic on the main path itself. In the last photo, the concrete foundation has just been poured for the final extension of the Pillaiyar Kulam building for storing more publications and other Minimela items. Now it will cure for some time.  

The Many Moods of Mount Waialeale

About 40 years ago Gurudeva noticed that the mountain which dominates our Western view (and is the long-extinct central volcano of Kauai island) changed from day to day, sometimes spectacularly so. He asked the monks to begin collecting photos of what he called "The Many Moods of Mount Waialeale." The years passed and the mountain revealed its wet self, its sunset self, its rainbow self, its waterfalls self, its cloud-shrouded self. One by one these different mountains were captured. We will probably never print that fancy coffee table book, as that is so last millennium. But we do plan to put the images in a newly-designed Virtual Tour in 2023. Ahead of that, we offer over 150 photos and art that reveal the dance of light that Siva performs each day to entertain and amaze monks and visitors alike.


Happy Skanda Shashti

Another Skanda Shashti festival has come and gone. Dancing with Siva defines the festival as "A six-day festival in October-November celebrating Lord Karttikeya's, or Skanda's, victory over the forces of darkness." After two years of no visitors, we once again have a contingent of pilgrims from off-island. Because the six days of this festival immediately follow our late Gurudeva's annual Mahasamadhi puja, most pilgrims who come for that puja tend to stay on for this festival. Every day they were attending the 6am Muruga puja performed by Muruganathaswami, offering soulful singing while the curtain was closed, building the vibration towards the final afternoon puja shown in these photos.

Preparation for Silpis’ Return– Take Two

Three silpi craftsmen from India were supposed to return to Kauai a couple months ago, but could not due to visa issues. The issues have now been resolved and we expect them here shortly, so a team headed today to the house where they stay, for a second round of cleaning and food supplies preparation.

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