Kauai's Hindu Monastery
March 2014 Newsletter
In early February, Sannyasin Senthilnathaswami and I traveled to Texas to participate in the “Gateway” weekend of the Hindu Students Association at the Greene Family Camp in Bruceville. After stops in Austin and Houston, we continued on to Trinidad where we held a two-day workshop entitled “Hinduism: Improving Your Day-To-Day Life.” We then returned to Texas for satsangs and keynote presentations at homes and temples in Midland, Fort Worth, Dallas and Plano and returned to the Aadheenam two days before our Mahasivaratri festival. Mahasivaratri is one of the two days of the year when all the monks worship as a group in Kadavul Temple. Everyone who attends has the feeling that they are joining in with the monks in their personal worship. A talk by Gurudeva about Siva was played followed by a talk by me elaborating on the nine ways to merge with Siva. One family shared: “I want to thank you for inviting us to the sacred celebration. It was extraordinary. In all our trips to India, we’ve never experienced Siva worship on such a profound level.” General contributions for February totaled $78,542, which is more than our minimum monthly goal of $65,000. Special project contributions totaled an additional $208. We are grateful to our global family of temple builders for your continued and generous support. Aum Namasivaya!
Click here to see Bodhinatha's extended travel schedule. Bookmark the link and return for updates.
Lord Karttikeya flies through the mind’s vast substance from planet to planet. He could well be called the Emancipator, ever available to the call of those in distress. Lord Karttikeya, God of will, direct cognition and the purest, child-like divine love, propels us onward on the righteous way through religion, His Father’s law. Majestically seated on the manipura chakra, this scarlet-hued God blesses mankind and strengthens our will when we lift to the inner sky through sadhana and yoga. The yoga pada begins with the worship of Him. The yogi, locked in meditation, venerates Karttikeya, Skanda, as his mind be comes as calm as Saravana, the lake of Divine Essence. The kundalini force within everyone is held and controlled by this powerful God, first among renunciates, dear to all sannyasins. Revered as Murugan in the South, He is commander in chief of the great devonic army, a fine, dynamic soldier of the within, a fearless defender of righteousness. He is Divinity emulated in form.
Explore Gurudeva's Wisdom
- Study Gurudeva's Master Course, which is filled with philosophical, practical, soul-stirring information potent enough to inspire even a skeptic to change his ways of thinking about life and the ultimate goal of existence on this planet: HimalayanAcademy.com/study/mc/
- Read Gurudeva's books online at: http://www.himalayanacademy.com/looklisten/gurus-talks
- Listen to Gurudeva's inspired talks by visiting: http://himalayanacademy.com/talks/gurudeva
News From the Home of Iraivan Temple
Bodhinatha and Senthilnathaswami stand with Swami Prakashananda and resident students at the Chinmaya Mission Ashram in Trinidad
Kadaitswami (left) and other satgurus of our paramparai have arrived on Kauai, carved in black granite in Mahabalipuram, India
Top to bottom:Bodhinatha introduces his workshop at Divali Nagar in Trinidad; Bodhinatha speaks to a gathering at the Dattatreya Yoga Center in Trinidad; Hindu Students Association members participate in a discussion with Bodhinatha at their annual Gateway Camp in Texas; Vijay and Anjali Dhar, and Arun and Bharti Koul of Southern California enjoy darshan with Bodhinatha; Mahaganapati is decorated for the fortnightly chaturthi puja in Kadavul Temple; monks at work in the woodshop; Kanda Alahan assembles shrines that he made for the media studio.
Iraivan Temple News
At the Bengaluru stone carving site, the five bronze Siva statues that will stand in the niches on the outside of the temple sanctum and the 11,000-pound avudaiyar will soon be crated for shipping to Hawaii. The stone carvers are working on the perimeter wall of the temple. The house which serves as living quarters for the stone carvers here on Kauai will soon undergo an upgrade. All the monks participated in a one-day cleanup to begin the renovation. Old carpeting and linoleum tile were taken out. Sinks, cabinets and appliances were removed from the kitchen. The house will be completely repainted and retiled and the kitchen will be entirely remodeled in preparation for our Indian craftsmen’s return.
Bodhinatha and Senthilnathaswami arrived in Trinidad & Tobago on February 13 to a warm greeting by Pandit Narendra and Ashwinee Ragoonanan and family. The next day they visited the Chinmaya Mission ashram, the Dattatreya Yoga Center and the 90.5 FM radio station. The weekend was dedicated to a workshop for the youth. Ten classes were presented covering subjects such as: Learning from Our Mistakes, Using the Power of Affirmation, Comparison of Christianity and Hinduism, Solving Conflicts Through Nonviolent Means, Integrating the Sacred and Secular and Being Hindu and American. In Midland, Texas, on February 19, Bodhinatha joined a Jewish rabbi, a Catholic monsignor, an Episcopal bishop and a Baptist pastor for the fourth annual Permian Basin Interfaith Event. Each of them answered the following questions from the community: Do you actively seek new members? What are your views on gay marriage? What do you say to those who do not believe in a Supernatural World? What about Christian prayer at public events? What do you say about kids who tell non-Christian kids they are going to hell? The clergy group has developed a camaraderie over the past four years that displayed itself in an increased cordiality and respectful banter. See the event here: bit.ly/interfaith2014
Yogaswami’s World Tour Nearing Completion
On May 29, 1997, the monastery celebrated the 125th Birth Anniversary of Gurudeva's guru, Sri Lanka’s Sage Yogaswami. After Guru Purnima, in late July, Gurudeva performed the final arati to a 20-inch-tall, gold-leafed, bronze statue of Yogaswami and sent it off on a tour tracing the diaspora of Sri Lankan Tamils throughout the world. He instructed that no plans or schedules should be devised. Everything should unfold according to the inspiration of devotees along the way. In the past 17 years, the tour has traversed half the globe. Moving from Hawaii, through Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver in Canada; then on to Maryland, New York and Los Angeles in the USA before crossing the Atlantic for Europe, spending most of the ensuing decade in Germany. Wonderful pujas and cultural events have greeted the statue of the sage at every stop. Last December, Yogaswami arrived in Colombo to visit groups of devotees across Sri Lanka. Perhaps it’s his wish to be in Jaffna for his 50th Mahasamadhi Guru Puja on April 10 of this year.
Publications and Other Activities
The glossary for the Spanish edition of Dancing with Siva was translated and added to the web and ebook versions of the book. Kanda Alahan came to help with the Media Studio construction for a week at Mahasivaratri time. He assembled two African Mahogany shrines that will grace the entryway of the building. The Ganapati Kulam worked this month milling slabs of wood from a giant mango tree to create desks for the Media Studio. The Siddhidatta Kulam is building new raised beds for the vegetable garden and clearing brush from the fence line of the monastery’s new Siva Pannai parcel of land. The Pillaiyar Kulam swamis have opened minimela.com distribution centers for Gurudeva’s books in Canada and Australia to eliminate the expensive shipping costs from the USA to those countries. The Lambodara Kulam redecorated Kadavul Temple with new tombais.
Top to bottom:Monks harvest the daily fresh veggies from Annapurna Garden, organic greens for lunch; a new kind of snap bean is being experimented with in the garden. A monk holds the first harvest in the palm of his hand.
Follow our daily activities at Today at Kauai's Hindu Monastery (blog)
Deep within the Himalayan Academy website is a most amazing recorded resource: more than one thousand talks by Gurudeva and Bodhinatha, 56 Sanskrit chants, 456 Saiva songs and 18 Shum language chants—300 hours of recording in all. We’ve just made it much more accessible at: himalayanacademy.com/looklisten/talksindex. Any file can be downloaded for listening offline by clicking on the title. For many talks by Gurudeva and Bodhinatha, a transcript is included. At present, Gurudeva’s talks from 1998 through 2001 are available. More will be added over time. The titles are instantly inspiring: “Tools of the Mind,” “Willpower and Change,” “Unfailing Law of Karma,” and “Take Time Out for Reflection.”
Bodhinatha’s talks start from 2001 and continue through today—a powerful sign of our sampradaya’s uninterrupted continuity. His talks are mostly from his talks given after the weekly homa ceremony in the monastery’s Kadavul Temple. Titles include: “The Magic of the High Eee,” “Becoming Centered,” “Karma Management,” Ahimsa in Speech” and “The Need for Religion.”
The Sanskrit chants include the entire Siva and Ganesha Atmartha Pujas, along with useful chants, such as the Shanti Mantra and Mantra Pushpam. The songs section is comprised of renditions of Saivite songs, including traditional bhajan, Tirumurai and the Natchintanai songs of Satguru Yogaswami. They are easy to learn for home bhajan.
On the cover you will see the Cham Hindus of Vietnam, a 60,000-strong community who trace their Hindu roots back to the 7th century when Tamil rulers built a kingdom here, replete with South Indian style temples and an exquisite culture. Malaysia’s Waterfall Temple in Penang is the subject of our feature story, a Murugan temple with a fascinating 150-year-old history. Its driving force is an energetic band of bhaktars, young ones with a lot to say about the centrality of God and service at the temple in their lives. Bodhinatha addresses an issue faced by college students in every nation, the omnipresent drone of secular humanism/atheism/existentialism/materialism. He sets this modern philosophy beside Hinduism and makes apt comparisons that will give any Hindu faced with a non-believer’s rant with fresh insights. Lavina Melwani takes us to the Smithsonian’s Sackler Gallery where crowds are being wowed by a major art exhibit on yoga and its transformative powers. With YouTube dominating the digital instructional universe, it was just a matter of time before a Hindu group produced a world-class series of films on Hinduism. The Chinmaya Mission has completed a 54-episode series on key Hindu and Vedantic teachings, all in an innovative retelling of ancient stories. Sadhu Bhadreshdas tells his own story of how, guided by Pramukh Swami Maharaj of the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha, he completed the five-volume Swaminarayan Bhashyam, the first effort for hundreds of years to create a rigorous bhashya in Sanskrit on the Prasthantrayi: the Upanishads, the Brahmasutra and the Gita. Ever get angry? We offer a 16-page treatise called Anger Management. Learn about the seven remedies for the habit of anger, and never explode again. The issue is rich with the voices of Hindu youth, with award-winning essays on their identity crises and breakthroughs, on the environmental efforts of Muniji in Rishikesh, how India’s model for sustainability can lead the world toward self-sufficiency and the always popular insights, cartoon and humorous comments found on our Quotes & Quips section.
Reflecting on Why the All-Important Will Is Just One Part of Your Complete Estate Planning Package
With fuel and food prices sky high, it’s natural for a family to think about its future financial security. The last place you might think to look for help in such matters is a Hindu monastery. But, in addition to spiritual direction, monasteries around the world offer practical guidance to help stabilize society during changing times. Many of you have supported the monastery for years, and we in turn want to help your family’s future. That is one reason the monastery is happy to provide a free, well-thought-out estate planning tool kit.
A good estate plan will not make high prices lower. But it will protect your family from unnecessary court costs, attorney fees and taxes. These can do real damage, especially at a time when prices continue to trend upward.
One of the most basic but misunderstood estate planning tools is the will. Some people think a will avoids probate, the costly court process that supervises the distribution of wealth to others at death. Not true. Your will is a ticket to probate court. Think of your will as a letter to the judge, telling him or her who gets your estate. The judge supervises distribution following your will, making sure the right people get the right things.
Some think the executor of your will can step in and manage your assets if you are too ill to do so. Not true. The executor has no power until after your death.
Some think wills can direct who gets everything you own. Not true. Some of your assets—life insurance and retirement plans, for example—indicate who gets what through their own beneficiary designations. Wills cannot simply override these designations.
Despite these and other limiations—
costs, delay, and their public nature—wills are a blessing to families who would otherwise watch helplessly as the court distributes their loved one’s estate according to an impersonal formula that might have little to do with the decedent’s wishes.
This is why a will is usually the first document people think of when drafting an estate plan. Even so, 58 percent of adult Americans don’t have one according to a new survey from lawyers.com. Here are some other interesting statistics from the survey’s findings:
•18 percent of Americans experience problems, due to a lack of or a flawed estate plan, after the death or incapacitation of a loved one.
•Nearly eight percent of Americans without an estate plan say they do not have one because they do not want to think about dying or incapacity.
Most attorneys encourage their clients to consider a living trust, a power of attorney for property management, an advance health care directive and a will. These are all topics covered in the estate planning tool kit.
Strengthen your family’s future and continue your support of Kauai’s Hindu Monastery by requesting your estate planning kit today. Contact Shanmuganathaswami at 808-822-3012, x 244 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org to receive it by e-mail.
Learn more about estate planning and planned giving at hheonline.org
New DevaTrek Card Deck Release!
A new edition of the popular DevaTrek Card Deck has been released. The latest edition now has 52 playing cards which include, in addition to the Yamas and Niyamas, an additional fourteen cards, seven pairs, one pair for each of the seven chakras with fabulous artwork -- an outstanding fun way to learn and memorize these key elements of Hindu thought and practice.
Please Help Finish New Temple Construction
You can sponsor Iraivan's entry steps and elephants.
The entry to Iraivan will be imposing, leading the pilgrim up to the Nandi Mandapam. The eight 30-foot-wide steps comprised of 64 individual stones are flanked on each side by the ornate yalli handrails—though "handrail" doesn't adequately describe these massive carvings. Walking up to the landing at the base of these steps will be three stone elephants, one hoisting a globe of the world above its head—signifying "Iraivan, where the world comes to pray."
Any stone(s) of the entry steps at $2,500 each
(you can sponsor a partial stone, e.g., half for $1,250)
- Elephant with globe: $55,000
- Mother and baby elephant: $55,000
Study the Master Course
Building Fund Donations
Thanks to Our February Temple Builders in 18 Countries
SUMMARY:For the six months of September to February, our minimum monthly goal was $390,000. Excluding contributions directed toward special projects, we received actual contributions of $404,691.93.
|Marie & R. Bhanugopan||US$108.00|
|Subramanaim & Malathy Nirmalananda||101.00|
|Essen Subramanian Valayten||3.33|
|Ron & Jennifer Burke||50.00|
|Anand & Maya Naidu||51.00|
|Praful C. Patel||1.00|
|Naguleswary & Manickam Senthivel||50.00|
|Thambimuttoo & Thavam Sivagnanam||51.00|
|Sayanthan & Anupama Sivanathan||11.00|
|Nagula & Sutha Suthaker||101.00|
|Luckshmi & Logan Siva Nirmalananda||201.00|
|Vennila & Sivaneswaran Sockanathan||50.00|
|Alfiya Khasanova & Vitaly Tsurkan||135.00|
|Thanesh Kumar & Leelawathy Aianarappan||14.73|
|Arulmani Devi Arumugam||90.33|
|Rathidevi & Veerasamy Batumallah||30.40|
|Arulmani Chandra Kumar & Sujith Arulmani||30.11|
|Yoga Rubini & Chandra Ganth Family||15.20|
|R. Jayakumar & Yoga Bhavani Family||15.20|
|Uma Dewi & Dinesh Kumar Jayaram||8.79|
|M. Shanmuganathan & A. Kamalambikai Family||30.40|
|Amaraysh, Kumutha & Jerry Lai||15.06|
|Wasantha Devi Murugan||15.20|
|Mohanavilashiny & Navukarasu||15.06|
|Yehanthini & Siva Taranee Navukarasu||15.06|
|Thambiah Murugesu & Chandravathani||30.40|
|Achi & Suriakala Naidu||23.75|
|M. Suranthiran Naidu||30.11|
|S. & Nirmala Raja||17.81|
|Kaveta Supramaniam Ramoo||30.11|
|Supramaniam Ramoo & In Memory of Neelavathy Thangavelu||30.11|
|Puvana Ratha Krishnan||15.20|
|Ambikabathi Shanmugam Pillay||30.40|
|Raja Singam Raja Ratnam & Shreema Rasiah||30.11|
|Hitesvar Skandanatha Sivanathan & Rishitaa Sivanathan||15.06|
|Puvana & Sivanathan||15.06|
|Mohana Sundari & Sivasekaran||30.11|
|N. Sivasubramaniam & Family||35.79|
|A. Sockalingam & Chandrasekari||30.11|
|Devi & the late Selvadurai Subramaniam||15.06|
|S. & Santhi Subramaniam||17.81|
|S. Sugumaran & Sarasammah||35.63|
|Abbhirama & Lavitra Thilageshvaran||14.73|
|Remalah & A. Thinathayalan||15.06|
|Thanavinthan Siva Thirumalai||15.63|
|Vikneswaran A. Vinsent||30.11|
|Darrshan Letchumanan & Yuvan Letchumanan||30.11|
|Amrit Singh Jaypal||4.17|
|Seedha Lutchmee Moonesawmy||3.33|
|Siven Barlen Mootoosamy||1.67|
|Vimaley Chellen Mootoosamy||1.67|
|Prekash & Sabita Baladien||15.00|
|Anil Ananda Badhwar||607.00|
|Fremont Lawrence & Toshadevi Nataraj||61.00|
|Rajesh H. Acharya||11.00|
|S.G. Nathan Narasa||17.81|
|Kavitha Darshini & Amitpal Singh||151.15|
|Shree Vishna Rasiah & Sharmila Harry||30.11|
|Darmaguhan & Shivali Satgunasingam||100.00|
|Golden Gate Mission||27.00|
|Hewlett-Packard Company Match||250.00|
|Microsoft Matching Gifts Program||1,400.00|
|United Way of The Columbia-Willamette||33.33|
|Eric & Heidi Aas||53.50|
|Hotranatha & Punita Ajaya||25.00|
|Adi & Asha Alahan||50.00|
|Vel & Valli Alahan||25.00|
|Rajan Aneja Family||25.00|
|Rajam & S.G. Appan||101.00|
|Arvind & Urmila Bhakta||51.00|
|Jangayya & Krishna Challapalli||50.00|
|Kaika & Nilufer Clubwala||101.00|
|Shyamadeva & Peshanidevi Dandapani||51.00|
|Amarnath & Latha Devarmanai||101.00|
|Anjali Monga & Vijay Dhar||1,008.00|
|Suketu & Mita Gandhi||51.00|
|Chaturbhuj N. Gidwani||40.00|
|Hiranya & Saswathi Devi Gowda||515.00|
|Toshadeva & Kamala Guhan||36.00|
|Prabodh & Jean Gupta||100.00|
|Kriya & Sharyn Haran||100.00|
|James L. Haynes||50.00|
|Vasanthi S. Iyer||50.00|
|Meeraa Murali & Jagannathan Jay||101.00|
|Namit & Nidhi Kapoor||122.00|
|Srinivas & Shanthi Karri||40.00|
|Prem & Urmilla Khilanani||108.00|
|Rama & Jeeva Kolinjivadi||501.00|
|Gerbail & Shakuntala Krishnamurthy||1,008.00|
|Krishna & Sarita Kumar||251.00|
|Christina & Vajra Lagdameo-Romano||31.00|
|Dasan & Shakti Mahadevan||108.00|
|Gaurav & Ripla Malhotra||250.00|
|Rohan & Girija Malkhare||101.00|
|Shankar & Sri Mallampalli||101.00|
|Raju Marjan Shrestha||21.00|
|Surendra & Aruna Matani||25.00|
|Tapas & Uttara Mazumdar||51.00|
|In Memory of Vickneswaren Murugesu||15.06|
|Raveendra & Gowrie Nadaraja||101.00|
|Palani & Selvarany Nadarajah||15.00|
|Nitya & Becky Nadesan||141.00|
|Kamlita Persaud & Bhuwan Nagessar||51.00|
|V. & Nirmalam Nagulendran||108.00|
|Changam & Nirmala Naidu||51.00|
|Manish M. Naidu||11.11|
|Sanjaya K. Nath||11.00|
|Narendra & Prabha Nayak||101.00|
|Emma & Narendra Nemivant||25.00|
|Easvan & Devi Param||101.00|
|Janaka & Bhavani Param||25.00|
|Harshad & Sharni Patel||301.00|
|Mark & Maya Patel||1,008.00|
|Pankaj & Falguni Patel||101.00|
|Rekha & Ajit Patel||1,000.00|
|Ashit & Sonel Patel||10,000.00|
|Vinay & Hansa Patel||101.00|
|Mr. & Mrs. Pranavan||25.00|
|Raman & Uma Purighalla||1,000.00|
|Sailaja Sudhakar Radhakrishnan||11.00|
|Praveen & Sarala Raja||501.00|
|Deva & Gayatri Rajan||1,001.00|
|Mohan Deepak Ram||119.00|
|Sridhar & Krithika Ramadas||251.00|
|Jeyashree & Venkat Ramakrishnan||50.00|
|Rajesh & Yatra Raman||11.00|
|Kasi & Vidya Ramanathan||101.00|
|Partab & Chandra Ramsinghani||27.00|
|Ramlu & Sanjina Rao||30.00|
|Jai & Laxmi Reddy||50.00|
|Cliff & Kathy Runge||50.00|
|Ved P. & Geeta Sahni||100.00|
|Deva & Amala Seyon||51.00|
|Mahendra Manilal Shah||101.00|
|Sivakami Shanmugasundaram Family||111.00|
|Praveen Y. Sharma||101.00|
|Iraja & Nilani Sivadas||108.00|
|Nathan & Sulena Sivananda||50.00|
|Tandu & Uma Sivanathan||50.00|
|Urupattur C. Sridharan||108.00|
|Shantha & Sriramamurthy Subbaraman||51.00|
|Tangali S. & Valli Sudarshan||261.00|
|Nandi Deva Sundaram||50.00|
|Sivam U. Thillaikanthan||45.00|
|Nalin & Kamal Tolia||5,000.00|
|Nagarjuna & Padma Yerra||200.00|
|Total Building Fund||$78,522.30|
|Iraivan Temple Endowment|
|Total Endowment Funds||$20.00|
|Special Project Donations|
|Gail La Mar||108.00|
|Srinivas R. Madaboosi||100.00|
|Total Special Projects||208.00|
Your support is deeply appreciated!
Donate To Iraivan, Become a Temple Builder Today!
Click Here to Donate Now!
Personal checks in certain currencies can be accepted by our bank (Euros, Pounds, Australian, Canadian and New Zealand dollars.)
Iraivan Temple is a punya tirtha, a sacred destination for devout pilgrims. The vision of Lord Siva on San Marga that Gurudeva was blessed with in 1975 is sustained and made manifest by the daily sadhanas of 21 resident monastics from five nations. Kadavul Hindu Temple and the many sacred areas of San Marga are available to Hindus for worship, meditation, japa and quiet reflection. It is best, if you are planning to come to visit us, to email us in advance to make sure the days of your visit coincide with our open times. And, if you want to have darshan with Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, to check if he is in residence and to make the necessary appointment. Please see our visitor information pages for more details.
Follow us on Twitter and Facebook: