BAPS monks visit Kauai Adheenam

We were recently visited by five Swamis from BAPS. These Swamis are stationed at various BAPS centers around the country and always enjoy their visit to Kauai Aadheenam. For two of them, this was their first visit to the aadheenam. Many of them commented on feeling the peaceful vibrations of the monastery. One of the newer monks, who had never met a Swami of another order before, felt it was similar to how man would feel realizing he wasn't alone in the universe, this monk was struck with a similar trepidation and awe upon realizing we are not alone in the monastic universe. Moreover. After pleasantries were exchanged Bhadreshdas Swami formally invited Bodhinatha to the 100th Jayanthi celebration of the late Pramukh Swami Maharaj that will take place in Gujarat late this year. After that a few monks gave the Swami's a tour of the monastery grounds which was especially sweet as two of them had never seen the place before. Aum!

Trip to Kokee

Did you know there are redwoods on the tropical island of Kauai? Some of us didn't either! Last retreat a few monks and task forcers elevated ourselves 4000 feet to Kokee State Park where a cooler dryer microclimate harbors thousands of redwood trees. We hiked along a somewhat hidden path around this landscape admiring the trees and flowers while enjoying fresh plums and berries from the plants.

Volcanic Cinder

For years we have bought black cinder in 20# bags for our tropical propagation efforts. Our high rainfall (up to 122" a year) requires plants to have excellent drainage, lest they drown during weeks of daily rainfall. Black cinder is the ideal medium for this. Light and porous, it allows water to reach the roots but then keep moving down and away from the plant.

Recently a local soil expert offered to ship us 40 yards of black cinder from the Big Island, at a savings of 80% from our old Home Depot source. We said yes, only later discovering this container was meant for his business, and he rerouted it for the monastery and reordered for his own needs. Goodness is still alive and well in the Pacific Islands.

The slideshow explores the world of lava rock.

Monastery Flowers

Feeling down? Glance at these beautiful monastery flowers for an instant pick me up! Effective for all ages. All natural formula. Vegan, organic, and gluten free. Side effects may include: awe, satisfaction, inner peace, and an overall increase in joy. Aum

Iraivan Dhvajastambha Panels and Sivalinga Tiruvasi Installed

For quite some time there's been a blank space on the four, flat, bottom faces of the wooden dhvajastambha ("flagpole") in the Nandi Mandapam at Iraivan Temple. Blank no more! The gold-plated copper plates arrived in the recent (and final) container shipment, along with the gold-plated Tiruvasi (brass arch) Which will rise behind the Sphatika Sivalinga.

All the items were installed just days ago and are exquisite, as you'll see in this photo collection. Beautiful miniature yallis (guardian figures) mount on the four corners of the dhvajastambha panels.

In the photos the tiruvasi is still wrapped in plastic, which will be removed a bit later.

Plumbing for Iraivan Temple

Before the red granite tile setting begins soon around the outside of the mandapams, we need to install many water drain screens that connect to drain pipes embedded in the concrete foundation. Making that connection requires us to modify PVC piping somewhat. Today a plumber visited to get familiar with the job. He met with Arumuganathaswami and Yoginathaswami to discuss details.

New Rudraksha Malas

Here are some beautiful malas recently strung by local sishyas for selling in the Minimela giftshop. The malas move like hotcakes and we can barely keep up.

June Gurudeva Chitra Padapuja

On June 11th morning we celebrated Gurudeva's monthly padapuja to honor his Mahasamadhi on Chitra nakshatra. Thanks to local sishyas for providing new flower arrangements for the occasion. An update of Gurudeva's year-long calendar of quotations will be printed soon, this time including some quotes from Satguru Siva Yogaswami and Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami

Banyan Branch Break

We're just sitting there on a recent morning at our computers in the Media Studio, minding our own business, when suddenly a loud "Crack, Crack, Whoosh!" We all rushed outside to find a sizable branch or two had partially detached from the Shanmuga Banyan tree nearby. Fortunately it fell just short of the Kadavul Temple water tank and didn't damage anything. We hired JP's tree trimmers to complete the detachment. Check it out.

Lahaina Noon

In the tropics the sun passes overhead twice during the year. On these two days, at local noon, the sun will be exactly overhead and an upright object such as a flag pole will have no shadow. This phenomenon only occurs in the tropics; the sun is never overhead in any other part of the planet.

The term "La haina" "means cruel sun' in Hawaiian, and while the sun in the islands is never really cruel, it can be pretty intense as it shines directly down from the zenith. This tropical "High noon' is thought to be a time of great mana (spiritual power) in the Hawaiian culture.

We went out at 12:35 today with Akash to test Siva's cosmological watchworks. Taking Akash's picture without a shadow was compelling. But what about the 55-foot-tall falgpole? Yes, it too had NO shadow (Except for the knot of the rope on the side and the cloth flag high above.

It happens May 31 and again on July 11.

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

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