Recently we held the annual Ayudha Puja, blessing the many tools that make Iraivan temple possible. This puja is a part of Navaratri and while the monastery doesn't observe this festival, ayudha puja is considered an important event, with special prayers for all tools all machinery used by the silpis. Traditionally, the first stone for a new project is blessed on this day, and today that was the first stone in the next layer of the Nandi Mandapam. After the short puja and blessings, Satguru gave gifts to each of the Siplis. Aum.
Today we are excited to see the preparation of a heavy-duty ramp leading into Iraivan Temple's Inner Sanctum. This ramp will support the Spatika Lingam's Avudaiyar on its way within. The Avudaiyar weighs 4,600 kilogram or 10,141.26 pounds! So this Ramp has to be strong.
Today the Siplis are hard at work preparing and jointing the next layer of stone which will sit atop the Nandi Mandapam.
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We need to perfect Ishvarapujana, personal worship, before we can expect to do really well in meditation. "The idea of Ishvarapujana, worship, is to always be living with God, living in Siva in God's house..." Learn the spirit of the puja, learn the spirit of devotion, get deeply into worship in the home. During puja, we're giving prana and devotional energy to the Deity; we receive blessings in return. God isn't living in your house, it's God's house and you are living in it.
Path to Siva, Lesson 53
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Today marks the completion and placement of the large floor stones in Iraivan Temple's Inner Sanctum. This wonderful accomplishment adds a nice sense of completion to the space, as opposed to the rough floor that was underneath. We are all seeing history in the making as this space is prepared to receive the Crystal Sivalingam, which will reside here for more than 1000 years. Aum Namah Sivaya.
Last week, Satguru, monk and siplis gathered atop the Iraivan Temple scaffolding to have a blessing for the first of the Nandi Mandapam's roof beams. These intricate stones are beautifully carved and carefully adjusted to fit between the mandapam's 12 pillars.
Jai Ganapati! Please enjoy this stream of our 2018 Ganesha Chaturthi abhishekam in Kadavul Temple.
At this auspicious time, just before we celebrate Ganesha Chaturthi, our monks joined Satguru in the inner sanctum of Iraivan Temple for the placement of the stones which support the crystal lingam's bronze avudaiyar. There is a hole beneath the stones which travels all the way down to the ground. During the ceremony Satguru blessed and lowered to the ground, a copper wire that has silver and gold spun around it. This wire then connects the avudaiyar to the earth. For the final arati after the placement of everything, the lights went out unexpectedly and only the beautiful glow of the camphor flame was left to complete the ceremony. Iraivan is now another step closer to completion. Aum Namah Sivaya. Sivaya Namah Aum
Our 3am vigili captured Ganesha's glory for the month of August, 2018. This should hold you over while the monks break from their intense work week and head into a two day retreat. Aum Namasivaya.
When Nandi the Bull was installed at Kadavul Temple in 1985 there was a major story on Honolulu's KRON TV channel. They sent a film crew to Kauai and the famed Joe Moore opened the evening news (remember those days?) with the headline "16 Tons of Bull." You have to grab your audience, right? And he does weigh 32,000 pounds.
It was a marvelous accomplishment for the monastery, a monolithic bull kneeling before Siva day and night, the symbol of strength humbling itself before God. We managed to bend a giant crane while lifting it onto its peedam.
But when the dust settled, Gurudeva confided to the monks that he loved the Nandi but was disappointed in the base. It was without ornamentation, just plain raw stones. Gurudeva called it "A pile of rocks." And he softly indicated that one day, perhaps, we could make it right.
So last year we had Selvanathan Sthapati draw a proper Chola base design. Yesterday we received the first series of photos from Jiva and his sons in Bengaluru showing the progress, which is significant as the photos show.
In the not too distant future, Gurudeva's wish will come true, and Nandi will be seated atop an intricate base worthy of His devotion.
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