Today the silpis and the monks of the Siddhidatta kulam placed the Kavacham pieces over the kodimaram, the temple flagpole. This is a test fitting, which will finalize the height at which stones around the base of the kodimaram must be carved too. After this the pieces will be taken off and the final steps towards completing the kodimaram will commence before they are placed a final time.
Kauai's Iraivan Temple by Derick Glaskin
"Because it is relatively free from mistaken doctrines, the Hindu approach to life—and the Hindu approach to time and the Hindu approach to worry, and the Hindu approach to the subconscious mind—is very different from the Western approach. The Hindu knows that he is evolving through a succession of lives on the planet, and he is not in a hurry. The devout Hindu accumulates little karma, because his subconscious is constantly being brought current by the worship of the Gods. Thus, karma is controlled. The Hindu looks at religion as the most joyous expression life can offer. The Hindu considers all of mankind his brothers and sisters, all created by the same Creator, all destined to the same attainment. ¶When he visits the temple, he is seeking to understand the minds of the Gods, seeking their blessings and their guidance. He stands before the Deity in humble awe of the grandeur of a world he can only partially conceive. He inwardly tries to sense the Deity. If he is even slightly clairvoyant, he may see the Deity overshadow the image within the sanctum. At first he may see the image appear to move, thinking it his own imagination. He may observe the expression on the Deity change from day to day and from hour to hour. He may become aware of the Deity’s influence in his life and awaken a love for the Gods whom he once only vaguely thought were plausible. ¶The Hindu is not an existentialist. He does not believe that God is unknowable. He does not believe in the dismal fate of mankind alone in the universe, with only himself to depend upon. The Hindu believes that he is born with his destiny, and the patterns are set. He blends his will with the will of his religious community and with the will of the Gods in the temple, because he doesn’t have the concept of a free will that is answerable to neither man nor God. ¶Belief is a pattern placed within the mind for a particular purpose, so that awareness will flow through that particular pattern for the rest of the person’s life. Generally, the pattern is put into the mind of a child before he is thinking for himself, or your friends or family or teachers will put beliefs in your mind. You will say, “Yes, I believe that,” without actually thinking it out for yourself. It is from our beliefs that our attitudes arise. Your individual awareness, your ability to be aware, has no way of functioning unless there are patterns within the mind for the prāṇas to flow through and around. You have to have a mind to work through. ¶First there are beliefs, and then attitudes. In the Hindu home and culture, beliefs and attitudes are taught very carefully and systematically, with love and attention, so that the individual becomes a productive member of the community even before leaving home. Those first mind impressions are important, and if they are correct and not fraught with misconceptions, they will properly guide the person through life with a minimum of mental and emotional problems. The person will correct himself or herself rather than having to be corrected by society." MWS 137
The first layer of Iriavan Temple's perimeter wall is now well on the way to completion. Most of the stones on the north, east and west sides have been set in place, while at the same time the two large yallis for the entrance steps are receiving some finishing touches.
With the Nandi Mandapam being so far along, some of the focus is shifting back to the perimeter wall and some of the finishing detail work, such as the ceiling carvings near the sanctum.
Today is the monthly Chaturthi, for which our wonderful 3am vigilee lavishly decorates Lord Ganesha with chandanam and many aromatic flowers. Here's a glimpse at Ganesha's glory.
Aum Namah Sivaya
Today several of our monks worked to uncover the doors for Iraivan's sanctum, which had recently arrived from India. These teak doors have a wonderful metal cladding of incredible beauty and detail. Each door displays five different forms of Lord Siva and are almost worthy of worship themselves. Though they will not be installed for some time, here at least is a detailed look at their artistry. Aum.
This week the siplis have been working on Iraivan Temple's Nandi Mandapam, particularly the stones that sit around the base of the Kodimaram. They're also just completing the steps that lead up the north side of the structure. Aum Namah Sivaya.
This morning Bobby and Kathy Page sent photos of the almost-completed stanchions being made in Colorado in their bronze shop. The posts were designed by Selvanathan Sthapati, our master builder in India, and sculpted by Holly Young. They are designed to hold the remarkable 10-foot-long black granite stone chains. They will serve as handrails on the perimeter of the Temple Builders' Pavilion near Iraivan Temple. Future visitors will stand in awe that these chains are rock, made from a single stone (very carefully!). It changes one's idea of stone to hold these chains and see the working links. Jai to the silpi artisans who can do such magical things with their hands and hearts.
Aum Namah Sivaya
Over the retreat, our monks spent a morning working on projects related to Iraivan Temple fundraising. Everyone started by stuffing newsletter envelopes for all members, subscribers and donors that receive them. That's right, each is personally prepared by one of your monks! Also on this day, Nirvani Tejadevanatha and Yogi Dayanatha worked on cleaning Iraivan Temple's calcite deposits from the stone. While out there they took this amazing photo of some high-up and high-speed cloud movement.
Aum Namah Sivaya,
With the kodimaram placed, work continues on the Nandi Mandapam's stairs and on the area at the base of the kodimaram. In the sanctum, carving is being done around the walls and the sanctum doors are also resting quietly, awaiting their eventual installation when the temple gets closer to completion.
Archives are now available through 2001. Light colored days have no posts. 1998-2001 coming later.