February 2019 Newsletter
At Kauai Aadheenam the year’s first major festival, Thai Pongal, was celebrated on January 14th. Our team of six silpis plus a temple cook conducted the ceremony at the Iraivan Temple site and invited the monks to attend the traditional boiling of pongal (rice and milk) followed by a short puja. The second festival was Thai Pusam, celebrated with an afternoon abhishekam to Lord Murugan on the 20th. A monthly Ardra abhishekam to Nataraja, and Gurudeva Chitra pada puja were also held in January. The extra number of year-end visitors continued through the first week of January and then returned to normal. A major project was completed, the study guide for Innersearch Sri Lanka 2019, to be held in March. In addition to the daily schedules, it contains resources for my classes, which are focused on visualizations for the Vyoma Vyapi Mantra to God Siva and on essential practices of Saiva Siddhanta. My Publisher’s Desk for the April-May-June 2019 issue of Hinduism Today was finalized. Entitled “Coping with Negative Events,” it discusses how bad things can happen to good people and offers insights on dealing positively with life’s difficulties. The key given is to accept what happens to you as self-created, as the karmic fruits of your past actions. It also touches on tribalism in today’s world and how that outlook relates to armed conflicts. General contributions for January totaled $79,813, which is more than our minimum monthly goal of $70,000. Special project contributions totaled an additional $397. We are grateful to our global family of temple builders for your continued and generous support. Om Namasivaya,
— Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami.
Click here to see Bodhinatha's extended travel schedule. Bookmark the link and return for updates.
Founder of Kauai’s Hindu Monastery, Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami (Gurudeva), 1927–2001
The astral plane is within this world as its etheric counterpart, and when you drop off the physical body, you are in it. You are in it now but are not aware of it as yet. It is a world just like this one. You can travel from country to country on the astral plane. While I was studying in Sri Lanka in 1948, my teacher living in America used to come and visit me in the astral body. When I returned to America, people from Sri Lanka used to come on the astral plane and visit me in America, and I would see them in their astral bodies. While I was in Sri Lanka, I introduced a yogi from the Himalayas to my teacher in America, and they met on the astral plane. The next day, the yogi came back and described my teacher perfectly and told me of their conversation. After I returned to America, one day my teacher asked, “Who was that yogi that I met on the astral plane?” and then described him perfectly, and told of the same conversation as well. If we did not use the astral body on a daily basis, we could not move the physical body. It is not the physical body that moves; it is the astral body that moves within it. When we step out of the physical body in the astral body, we cannot move the physical body until we get back inside it. While conscious in the astral body, we are more on the astral plane than on the physical plane. Only when the astral body and the physical body are connected do we seem to be in a physical world.
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: https://www.himalayanacademy.com/looklisten/gurus-talks
- Listen to Gurudeva's inspired talks by visiting: https://himalayanacademy.com/talks/gurudeva
- Explore the teachings in the easy to use Sivasiva mobile app: https://himalayanacademy.com/apps/sivasiva
Morning at Iraivan: Looking west from the monastery, with the island’s central extinct volcano in the background.
Guru darshan: Gurudeva’s black-granite murti blesses the Narmada Stream on Path of the Satgurus while a small sandstone Nandi looks on.
Monks and members attend the January 25th installation of the 13-foot-tall bronze Hanuman near the Rudraksha Forest.
Top to bottom: Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, Paramacharya Sivanathaswami and monks join the Thai Pongal event, led by Chinnu (the monastery cook) with a coconut; Sannyasin Yoginathaswami examines tomato vines in Arizona;
Iraivan Temple Progress
During January, two of the silpis worked on placing the perimeter wall stones, three continued the finish work on the roof stones of the Nandi Mandapam, and one focused on the entrance panels. The two teakwood doors to the sanctum are now on a ship headed to Hawaii via Auckland, New Zealand. Three 20-foot shipping containers loaded with perimeter wall stones are also in transit. More progress was made on cleaning the calcite that built up between Iraivan Temple’s ceiling mortar joints, using soda blasting (sand-blasting using borax, which is soft).
Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami’s Activities
Satguru conducted a Webinar for devotees and continued his weekly video commentary on the youth catechism, Path to Siva, covering the lessons on: How Can We Strengthen Our Temple? What Is Our Form of Prayer? How Do We Celebrate Festivals? and How Do We Observe Pilgrimage? See these talks on our Kauai’s Hindu Monastery YouTube channel.
Vamadeva Shastri and Shambhavi Devi brought a group to the monastery who were attending their study-retreat on Ayurveda, Jyotish and Vedanta. The monastery also enjoyed a rare visit from Leimomi Mo’okini Lum. The 93-year-old Hawaiian priestess presented Gurudeva with the Kuloulou (sacred Hawaiian staff) decades ago that stands to the right of the Guru seat in the Guru Pitham. Lemomi is actively restoring the Mo’okini Heiau, which according to oral history was established 1,500 years ago.
Lord Hanuman Lands at Kauai Aadheenam
At 1:31pm on Friday, January 25 Lord Hanuman’s feet touched down on a mound near the sacred Rudraksha Forest at Kauai Aadheenam, where He will remain standing for a thousand years. This culminated a project set in motion by Gurudeva, Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, in the 1990s, who asked us to honor the God that brought us Iraivan Temple. It took four men seven years to carve the form, and 26 artisans two years to craft the bronze in Colorado, using molds made by Master sculptor Holly Young in Hawaii. After preparing the ground and spending day’s making sure Lord Hanuman’s base and metal bolts were in perfect alignment, we were able to set this 13-foot-tall bronze masterpiece in place with effortless precision, thanks to our skilled crane operator, Larry Conklin. Once the crane harnesses were removed, Hanuman was draped with an orange shawl and offered incense, fruits, coconut, flowers and an arati. Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, monks, members and a few pilgrims witnessed the rare event. Aum Anjaneyaya Namah!
Publications and Other Activities
Last month the publications team focused on the editorial work of articles for the April-May-June 2019 edition of Hinduism Today magazine. Articles include the story of the Himalayan temples of the Char Dham pilgrimage, New Delhi’s Soft Power Conference which the monks attended and an in-depth study of the nine rasas, or emotions. Adi Srikantha arrived for three months of seva. January’s “continuing education” program took our monks on two field trips to further their knowledge of our hydroponic greenhouse operation. Yoginathaswami and Sadhaka Dayanatha spent four days in Tucson attending a 40 hour intensive on hydroponic tomato growing at the University of Arizona. At the end of January the entire Siddhidata Kulam flew the Big Island for a day-long tour and seminar on how to grow tomatoes in the Hawaiian tropics.
Perimeter wall: The silpis are making major progress on the installation of the 475-foot-long wall enclosing Iraivan Temple. It is made of two layers, and current work is on the bottom part. When complete, it will be 42 inches high and have 50 Chola-style rose granite pots on it, holding special plants. It is a big job, but they have made a strong start. .
Hawaiian Priestess Leimomi Lum: (in wheelchair) visited from Hawaii’s Big Island with her nieces and a Buddhist monk.
History Movie Series Completed!
India’s History: title screens for part 4; and part 5; lyrics and screen shot from the “Let’s Go Back 6,000 Years” music video
We are proud to announce the completion of the YouTube series “History of Hindu India” with the posting of parts four and five in late 2018. Based on the eponymous book by the editors of Hinduism Today magazine and the late Dr. Shiva Bajpai, Professor Emeritus of History, California State University Northridge, this series provides an authentic presentation of the history of India and Hinduism for use in middle and high school classes and Hindu temple study groups, as well as general presentations on the Hindu religion and history. The 22-minute movies are presented directly from India, with cultural and historic settings. The explanations are concise and appropriate for young audiences.
Hindu History Part 1, which has almost 3 million hits on YouTube, covers Indian history from the Indus-Saraswati civilization up to the Gupta period, 300 ce. Part 2 explores the Gupta Empire, the Huna invasions, the visits of Buddhist monks Faxian and Xuanzang, the initial incursions of Arab Muslim armies in the 8th century, and the rise of the great Chola kingdom of South India. Part 3 covers Indian history from 1100 to 1850, recounting the extensive foreign invasions, the plunder of the great Siva temple at Somnath, the establishment of the Mughal Empire in most of India by the 16th century, its subsequent decline by the mid-18th century and the gradual take over of the nation by the British.
The newly released fourth movie (bit.ly/history-india-4) in the series covers Indian history from 1850—when the British Crown took over direct control of India from the East India Company—to Independence in 1947. Britain’s extreme economic exploitation of the subcontinent resulted in frequent famine and deprivation across the once wealthy land. A determined and mostly nonviolent freedom movement, led by MK Gandhi and other prominent politicians, finally won independence from Britain. The country was immediately partitioned into modern India and Muslim Pakistan. The film includes details about Gandhi’s Satyagraha campaigns and real-life footage of this great soul. This segment introduces two great saints—Tiruvalluvar, author of the ancient but timeless ethical masterpiece Tirukural, and the 19th-century Swami Vivekananda, exploring their backgrounds, achievements and memorials.
The fifth and concluding documentary (bit.ly/history-india-5) covers Indian history from 1947 to the present day. Opening with Nehru’s famed “Tryst with Destiny” speech on August 15, 1947, it describes the formation of the new government and its post-war independence challenges, development of the constitution and of parliament, Pakistan’s invasion of Kashmir, the horrors of Partition (with historic footage), formation of states along linguistic lines, and efforts to uplift the lower classes. This segment discusses the religions of India, religious strife and its causes, and the Hindu tradition of pilgrimage, using Rameswaram Siva temple in the South as an example. Also presented are India’s ancient traditional medicine, ayurveda; hatha yoga’s worldwide popularity, Bollywood cinema and the ever-popular Indian cuisine.
All this and more contributes to an exceptionally wide-ranging coverage of the history of Hindu India. In late 2018 we engaged a a three-part team—a lyricist, the singing team of Aks and Lakshmi, and a music video editor to produce the first of what we hope will be many songs based on our documentaries. Watch and listen to “Let’s Go Back 6,000 Years” at: youtu.be/YHS7dyN6sgM.
Millions of people were living in peace
In cities by the Indus and Saraswati
Farming, statues, trade routes, advanced tools, and toys,
houses, dice and playgrounds for all the girls and boys.
Practices from back then are still alive today,
Some rituals and Gods, meditation, math and art;
Greetings from the past, in the present remain
Just say Namaste with a smile from the heart.
Come on now kids, let’s go back six thousand years in time,
Learning India’s Indus culture through these rhymes.
Bodhinatha's Newest Teachings Online
Satguru Bodhinatha is now turning his 15-minute Keynote presentations into movies which can be used for our personal benefit or shared at a satsang of friends. See them here.
Thanks to a vibrant team of transcribers we can hear Bodhinatha's recent talks and read the transcriptions. Click here for all of Bodhinatha's talks.
The weekly talks are also live streamed and then save on YouTube. Go to the Kauai Aadheenam channel and scroll down to recent talks.
Bodhinatha's weekly talks can be heard on our website: His recent commentaries on the chapters in our new book "The Path to Siva" are marvelous!
How Can We Be Strong Saivite Hindus?
Why Should we Learn a Cultural Art?
How Do We Observe Pilgrimage?
How Do We Celebrate Festivals?
What Is Our Form of Prayer?
Click here to see Bodhinatha's extended travel schedule. Bookmark the link and return for updates.
Follow our daily activities at Today at Kauai's Hindu Monastery (blog)
Hindu Heritage Endowment
Estate Planning: Why the Will Is Just One Part of Your 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 Kauai’s Hindu 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.
Transition: A woman leaves her physical body and is received by her guardian devas in her astral body at the moment of her Great Departure. She is happy that—guided by her estate planning tool kit—her personal and financial affairs are settled.
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 limitations—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 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 downloading the PDF file at:
For information on establishing a fund at Hindu Heritage Endowment, contact Shanmuganathaswami at 808-822-3012 ext. 6 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Hindu Heritage Endowment wants you to succeed in your estate planning efforts and, through them, both care for your family and remember good causes like the Iraivan Temple Endowment. (For additional information contact Shanmuganathaswami at 808-822-3012, ext. 6, or e-mail email@example.com. To learn more about planned giving options to provide immediate tax and income benefits to you and your family, while also providing a future gift to HHE, please visit www.hheonline.org. Get the tool-kit (pdf)
To learn about this and other tools for spiritual living, study The Master Course trilogy
Help Finish Iraivan Forward
You Can Help Sponsor the Perimeter Wall
❏ One pillar section: $15,000
❏ One panel section: $30,000
Building Fund Donations
Thanks to Our January Temple Builders in 16 Countries
For the five months of September to January, our minimum monthly goal was $350,000. Excluding contributions directed toward special projects, we received actual contributions of $418,927.15.
|Marie & R. Bhanugopan||US$108.00|
|D. Karthigesu Family||100.00|
|Valinayagum Keven Kownden||100.00|
|Luckshmi & Logan Siva Nirmalananda||35.00|
|Gunavinthan Siva Thirumalai||100.00|
|Thanavinthan Siva T. Thirumalai||100.00|
|Essen Subramanian Valayten||2.94|
|R. & B. Balasubramaniam||108.00|
|Ron & Jennifer Burke||50.00|
|Maxime Manohara Lapointe||10.80|
|Bhupendra & Subha Mistry||301.00|
|Changam & Kamachi Naidu||50.00|
|Raman & Vaishali Paranjape||51.00|
|Mr. & Mrs.Pranavan||25.00|
|Somas & Yoges Rajamohan||500.00|
|Uma & N. Satkunasivam||101.00|
|Vijaya & Thiru Satkunendran||25.00|
|Thambimuttoo & Thavam Sivagnanam||51.00|
|Sayanthan & Anupama Sivanathan||11.00|
|Sara K. Sivasurier||144.00|
|Nagula & Sutha Suthaker||101.00|
|Cristina Ma Puja Canducci||20.00|
|P. Barathi Balasegaran||11.94|
|Hemakheshaa Naatha Batumallah||11.94|
|Rathidevi &Veerasamy Batumallah||23.89|
|Sai Sheeny, Sai Janany, Sai Hamsiny, Chandran Ramamurthy & Kalpana Devasagayam||59.45|
|Yoga Rubini & Chandra Ganth Family||11.94|
|R. Jayakumar & Yoga Bhavani Family||11.94|
|Uma Dew & Dinesh Kumar Jayaram||7.00|
|M. Shanmuganathan & A. Kamalambikai||23.89|
|Amaraysh, Kumutha & Jarry Lai||11.90|
|Kavin Kirav, Leena Lakshmi Devasagayam & Anand Kumar Letchumana||47.56|
|Rasiah Vallipuram & Pathumanithi Nagalingam||23.79|
|M. Suranthiran Naidu||35.69|
|Supramaniam Ramoo & In Memory of Neelavathy Thangavelu||23.79|
|Raagini Ravindren & Senthil Ravindren||11.90|
|Jayaraj Kantharaj & Saranraj S-O Jayabalathilagam||14.27|
|B. S. Selvakone||51.00|
|Ambikabathi Shanmugam Pillay||23.89|
|Raja Singam Raja Ratnam & Shreema Rasiah||23.79|
|Mohana Sundari & Sivasekaran||23.79|
|A. Sockalingam & Chandrasekari||23.79|
|Devi & the late Selvadurai Subramaniam||11.90|
|Kunal & Sanyogeeta Ghurbhurn||2.94|
|Amrit Singh Jaypal||7.35|
|Seedha Lutchmee Moonesawmy||2.94|
|Naden Seeneevasen Pillay||1.47|
|Prekash & Sabita Baladien||15.00|
|Easan, Lavanya & Sivakumar Saravan||400.00|
|Kavitha Darshini & Amitpal Singh||37.00|
|Kamala Devi Vaiyapuri||100.00|
|Gary & Radica Asha Yee-Fong||25.00|
|Shree Vishna Rasiah & Sharmila Harry||23.79|
|Georgiana Lukshmi Dorothy Barnes & Theeba Ragunathan||200.00|
|Benevity - Raj Shenoy & Asmita Akerkar||400.00|
|Benevity - Rajesh Gunnalan||2,500.00|
|YourCause - Vijayarani Natarajan||126.00|
|Padmini K. Aiyer||101.00|
|Vel & Valli Alahan||25.00|
|Palani K. Aravazhi||105.00|
|Kaika & Nilufer Clubwala||101.00|
|Shyamadeva & Peshanidevi Dandapani||54.00|
|Janakbhai R. Dave||50.00|
|Amarnath & Latha Devarmanai||101.00|
|Subba R. Edupuganti||25.00|
|Ramya Subramani & Rajesh Ekambaram||211.00|
|Barbara Foley & Brad Fregger||108.00|
|Roopa Purushothaman Gandhi||1,008.00|
|Suketu & Mita Gandhi||51.00|
|Hiranya & Saraswathi Devi Gowda||10,001.00|
|Toshadeva & Kamala Guhan||18.00|
|Usharani Iswaran Magaña||20.00|
|Srinivas & Shanthi Karri||90.00|
|Anil & Devajyothi Kondapi||108.00|
|Karthikeyan & Uma Lakshmanan||108.00|
|Gerard & Zhena Linsmeier||54.00|
|Pragya K. Manglik||101.00|
|Laura Devi Marks||108.00|
|Janice A. May||5.00|
|Hanumantharao & Nirmala Medarametla||116.00|
|Shailesh & Jyoti Mistry||51.00|
|Palani & Selvarany Nadarajah||15.00|
|Nitya & Becky Nadesan||150.00|
|Manish M. Naidu||11.11|
|Rama Chandran & Rema Nair||21,000.00|
|Anita R. Nandyala||101.00|
|Varinder & Rina Narang||51.00|
|Mohan & Sutha Narayanan||400.00|
|Sanjaya K. Nath||11.00|
|Nagar S. Nayak||101.00|
|Inder Jit Nicshal||21.00|
|Satya & Savitri Palani||21.00|
|Easvan & Devi Param||101.00|
|Harish Parmar- Dhanraj Inc||51.00|
|Rasiklal S. Patel||101.00|
|Rekha & Ajit Patel||500.00|
|Vinay & Hansa R. Patel||101.00|
|Salik & Sanjia Pathak||51.00|
|Robert M. Petersen||250.00|
|Deva & Gayatri Rajan||1,001.00|
|Mohan Deepak Ram||11.00|
|Jeyashree & Venkat Ramakrishnan||50.00|
|Rajesh & Yatra Raman||11.00|
|Partab & Chandra Ramsinghani||27.00|
|Rama Pemmaraju Rao||108.00|
|Seetha & Sudarsana Reddy||50.00|
|Cliff & Kathy Runge||50.00|
|In Memory of Mrs. Manonmani Sangarappillai||100.00|
|Aran & Valli Sendan||25.00|
|Deva & Amala Seyon||51.00|
|Ami M. Shah||101.00|
|Iraja & Nilani Sivadas||108.00|
|Lakshana Chetana Sivananda||51.00|
|Nathan & Sulena Sivananda||108.00|
|Tandu & Uma Sivanathan||100.00|
|T. Sridhar & Padmini Sridhar||253.00|
|Raja & Anita Srivastava||25.00|
|Yasotha & Thevarajah Subarajan||76.00|
|Sashi & Gayathri Subramanian||150.00|
|Nandi Deva Sundaram||50.00|
|Phani Kumar Sureddi||7.00|
|Nirupa & Nagamany Thayalakhandan||1,008.00|
|Sivam U. Thillaikanthan||40.00|
|Sandie Tillotson & Family||499.00|
|Prabodh & Nirmala Vaid||101.00|
|Tsajon & Kamalia Von Lixfeld||100.00|
|Richard Bosworth & Kerri Watts||101.00|
|Jinny Petcharat Wonwong||11.11|
|Total Building Fund||79,781.45|
|Iraivan Temple Endowment|
|Amey Surendra Gangal||11.00|
|Total Endowment Funds||32.00|
|Special Project Donations|
|Total Special Project Donations||397.45|
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 19 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.
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