For many months the aadheenam has enjoyed the presence of two taskforcers, Vel Mahalingum and Ramesh Sivanathan. Today Ramesh boarded a plane back to Malaysia, and in a few days Vel will make his way back to Mauritius after a stopover in Europe. As we've seen in previous posts, these two have been making many contributions while here. We're very thankful for their dedication and tireless seva. Towards the end of their stay the two visited our new Bronze Hanuman during this year's Tamil Hanuman Jayanti on January 5th. They also traveled out to the Rudraksha forest and Iraivan Temple for a final visit. Aum Namah Sivaya.
Of the varied groups of monks in the Aadheenam, the Ganapati Kulam is responsible for publications, particularly making our books and producing Hinduism Today Magazine. We took a quick tour through their office with a camera to catch them at their seva.
Almost every year Vamadeva Shastri and Shambhavi Devi bring a group up to the monastery to visit. Comprised of both Hawaiian residents and guests from Europe and India, the group is on the Island for a retreat to learn about ayurveda, jyotish and vedanta. They began with a visit to Kadavul Temple and then spent some time in the Media Studio talking with Paramacharya Sadasivanathaswami. After that they braved the potential rainfall and took a walk with Yogi Jayanatha and Kulapati Ramesh out to Iraivan Temple and back.
On the final day of Pancha Ganapati, while Satguru was out of his office, a small team of monks descended upon the room and replaced his old, decaying desk with a new one. This new desk can be raised with a push of a button, which is useful if Satguru wants to work while standing, but is also important for adjusting the height of his computer and camera during video conferences with devotees. Aum Namah Sivaya
With so many visitors arriving at the aadheenam during the holiday season, there couldn't be a better time for the arrival of our new information billboards which will now greet all of our guests at our Banyan Mandapam. For many that arrive, the information offered in this mandapam is a large part of their visit, and now that experience will be greatly improve. The signs give an introduction to the monastery, as well as offering insights into Hinduism Today magazine and our Saivite philosophy.
Our December 2018 news video covers events in November 2018, including: the observance of this year's celebrations of Gurudeva Sivaya Subramuniayaswami's Mahasamadhi; the birth of our new jersey cow; and recent progress on Iraivan Temple including the placement of the bronze avudaiyar.
Today we take a short tour around the monastery to see what we'll find.
With our observance of Sadhu Paksha having come to a close, we start our new phase with a homa and with a parade out to change the flag and have arati at Iraivan Temple. Here are reminders from Gurudeva, from his Saiva Dharma Shastras, detailing the significance and sadhanas of this inner season.
Beginning with Hindu New Year in mid-April, three seasons of the year divide our activities into three great needs of humankind--the learning of scripture in the first season, Nartana Ritau; the living of culture in the second season, Jivana Ritau; and the meditating on Siva in the third season, Moksha Ritau. Thus we are constantly reminded that our life is Siva's life and our path to Him is through study, sadhana and realization. In ritau one, we teach the philosophy; in ritau two, we teach the culture; and in ritau three, we teach meditation.
120 The Third Season: Moksha Ritau
The third period of the year, Moksha Ritau, the cool season, is from mid-December to mid-April. It is the season of dissolution. The key word is resolution. Merging with Siva: Hinduism's Contemporary Metaphysics is the focus of study and intense investigation. The colors of this season are coral-pink, silver and all shades of blue and purple--coral for the Self within, silver and blue for illumination, and purple for enlightened wisdom. High above flies the coral flag, signaling Parasiva, Absolute Reality, beyond time, form and space. Moksha Ritau is a time of appreciation, of gratitude for all that life has given, and a time of honoring elders, those in the sannyasa stage of life. Moksha Ritau is excellent for philosophical discussions, voicing one's understanding of the path through an enlightened intellect. In finance, it is the time for yearly accounting and reconciliation. On a mundane level it is a time of clearing attics, basements, garages, sheds, warehouses, workshops and desks, getting rid of unneeded things, of pruning trees, of streamlining life on the physical plane--of reengineering.
One thing that has always been a part of monastic life has been caring for animals. In walking our aadheenam grounds you'll find wild birds, fish, cows, lizards and all assortment of other creatures, including the occasional sleeping cat. In the monastery you'll also find several large fish tanks in our kulam offices. We'll feature the Siddhidatta Kulam's beautiful aquarium in a future post. For now we will take a look at the recently created 55 gallon tank in the Media Studio. Aquariums can be an enjoyable living art form, as one aquascapes them and then populates them with a variety of happy fish. They also seem to add a certain calming energy to a space.
Aum Namah Sivaya
Today ends our week. Our monks now head into a two day retreat, after which begins their observance of Sadhu Paksha. See you in a few days!
"Listen, while I tell you the Path to Liberation-- Truth, patience, calmness and discipline of self;
Discrimination between the eternal
And the passing;
Devotion to the humble servants of the Lord; Rising in the early morning
And bathing before daybreak;
Repeating in the way prescribed
The flawless Letters Five; Worshipping the Guru's Feet; Applying Holy Ash;
Eating but when hungry;
With the whole heart giving praise;
Studying the Shastras; seeing others as oneself; Severing attachment to all property and wealth; Speaking with fit courtesy; avoiding argument; Driving from the mind
All thought of family and caste;
Being ever free of the smallest like or dislike; Living and abiding beneath
The Lord's Eternal Feet."
Archives are now available through 2001. Light colored days have no posts. 1998-2001 coming later.