Take a Yogic trip into the lush green hills of Kauai, and experience Kauai’s Hindu Monastery.
It’s open to the public from 9am-1pm (although I always recommend checking the monastery website for info).
This peaceful sanctuary is a great place to venture to one morning while in Kauai. They offer a daily puja ceremony from 9-1045am, and everyone is able to participate. If you do yoga, meditate, or are interested in any kind of spirituality I highly recommend going for a daily dose of ‘namaste’. The puja, although it can seem long and tedious, is very powerful and helps to clear energy and karma. I recommend going more toward the end (if you’re interested) so you can see monks come out and close the ceremony.
The Kauai Monastery was founded in 1970. Although it’s a very large campus, visitors can only see a small aspect of it. It is quite beautiful though! Well worth your time, if you have a free morning and need something to do, or a new place to escape too. It’s a great place to go on a rainy day too, when the beach may not be as appealing.
They offer guided tours at 9am about once a week. Check their website, and make reservations.
Be sure to dress appropraitley while at the monastery. They do have shalls you can borrow if needed. It is recommended to cover your knees and shoulders.
What is a Puja?
A puja is the act of showing reverence to a god, a spirit, or another aspect of the divine through invocations, prayers, songs, and rituals. An essential part of puja for the Hindu devotee is making a spiritual connection with the divine.
The Kauai Monastery performs the morning puja daily in their siva temple. People gather and sit on the floor and meditate while mantra music plays. After about an hour, around 10am, a monk comes out and gives offerings and performs the ritual. I’m guessing this varies daily. When I visited one guy did it and gave us a powder to put on our forehead, another to lick/drink, and a flower towards the end.
I visited another time and there were more monks who did a different ritual. Be prepared for whatever! The puja is an offering to help us let go, release, and ‘cleanse’ our mind/body/self to help us. There are papers you can write intentions or what to release. Of course, you can always have your own prayer and intention.
Personally, whenever I go to any kind of puja, I feel lighter after. Try it out at 9am on Kauai. It’s okay if you come later, and just want to check it out. People are free to come and go and leave at anytime between 9-11am, when the ritual is being performed. I recommend being there for the end though. The best part is from 1015am-1045am.
Enjoy the Kauai Monastery!
It’s a beautiful drive, regardless, of your faith, religion, or spiritual nature. It never hurts to see a new way of life, and experience something new. They have a huge Banyan tree too, that is incredible!