Marcia Bowes - Sri Somesvara Temple, N.C., USA
In August 2006, my spiritual teacher, Maharshi Maheshananda, asked me if I could build a Shiva Temple at Mount Soma, a Vedic spiritual community in the heart of the mountains of North Carolina, USA.
The temple was to be built with the strictest adherence to the rigors of Vastuved.
Maharshi determined this could best be accomplished through the lineage of the great and revered Master Builder, V. Ganapati Sthapati, who revitalized the ancient art of vastuved, bringing back the hand-crafted way of life and its deeply spiritual and aesthetic principles.
Over the next 5 years, I developed deep and abiding respect, admiration and heartfelt friendship for our temple architects, Santhana Krishnan Sthapati and architect Krithika Karrupiah. During much of that time I was in almost daily or weekly contact with them, reviewing and re-reviewing every aspect of the design, planning and construction in minute detail, literally to 1/16 of an inch. They extolled the virtues of professionalism, thoroughness, attention to detail, complete dedication and above all, unlimited patience with me and my continuous rounds of questions. They were able to communicate and specify design details so well that the temple building and all the carvings from India were a precise fit, every measurement correct to 1/16 of an inch! They were with me through thick and thin, through obstacles that could seem insurmountable, and provided a wealth of knowledge on their craft that I am still awe-inspired by. I am eternally grateful to them.
In India, shilpis hand carved 50 tons of granite, meticulously shaping the Inner Sanctum and niches for the murtis. In America, they spent 9 months on-site installing the stonework and creating incredible embellishments for the interior and exterior of the temple.
During the time that the shilpis and my dear friend Siva Kumar Sthapati were on-site, I watched with amazement as they literally brought the temple to life. I saw, felt and personally experienced the truth that “the Shilpi, Tal (Rhythm), Shakti and Stone Merge”.
In the words of Ganapati Sthapati, “The shilpi is jivatman, the microcosm. The macrocosm is the Paramatman. As they resonate with each other they lose their individual identities. This is atma samyoga, the soul’s experience of oneness. This is pure love and the ultimate goal of life.”
Visitors to Sri Somesvara Temple are struck by the vibration and power of the temple. They frequently comment on the caliber of the vastu temple construction and the subtle yet permeating effect of the deities and the temple. They are drawn back again and again to experience the powerful emanations.
Sri Somesvara Temple, http://srisomesvara.org/, stands today as a beacon light to the world radiating the harmony and coherence of the Absolute.
Sri Somesvara Temple, Mount Soma, North Carolina
Dr. Jessie Mercay, Chancellor AUM S&T
I have known Vaastu Architect Krithika Karuppiah and Temple Architect and Engineer Santhana Krishnan for ten years. I met them both while studying Vaastu Architecture with Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati – the late doyen of traditional Indian architecture and Vaastu Shastras. They are both relatives of Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati and have spent many years under his tutelage. Sthapati Santhana Krishnan grew up with this knowledge from infancy.
Krithika Karuppiah is one of the few living Vaastu architects who applies the principles correctly for home and business architecture. She is an internationally known expert in this field. Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati personally mentored her for many years. She accomplished hundreds of designs and is highly skilled at town planning, apartment planning and design, co – housing, individual housing, design of ashrams, health centers, business centers and every other kind of building in which principles of building architecture of Sthapatya Veda and Vaastu Shastras could be applied.
Krithika has taught this science to a number of students under the guidance of Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati and hence has assimilated the technology on a very deep level.
As a board member of The American University of Mayonic Science and Technology, Krithika is a key consultant for the technical aspect of this knowledge. She has contributed to the development of this knowledge and has been instrumental in advancing the knowledge of Vaastu Shastra throughout the world.
I highly recommend her as a bright, competent, aesthetically developed architect.
I have known Sthapati Santhana Krishnan for ten years. He hails from a family who has been involved with traditional architecture for thousands of years. He is one of the world’s only traditional temple architects/ engineers who follow the Vaastu Shastras and Agamas properly in designing and building traditional temples, mosques, churches, and other holy buildings. He is qualified to design and build traditional Hindu, Jain, Buddhist, Muslim, and Christian buildings and statuary and other temple forms. He is also qualified to build non – denominational meditation halls, chapels and temples. He qualified to build homes, businesses, and other non – religious buildings. He is qualified in town planning, building forts, castles, villages, bridges, and any other form of building and engineering covered in Vaastu Shastras.
Sthapati Santhana Krishnan is an internationally known temple architect and engineer. He is qualified to design and create sculptures of virtually any deity or sculpture that would be desired by a client. He has a profoundly qualified staff of Sthapatis (Architects, engineers, builders) and Shilpis (carvers and plasterers) who work together on various projects. One of his colleagues, Sivakumar Sthapati is a world class brick and plaster specialist who is able to execute his work with precision and beauty.
Sthapati Santhana Krishnan is a Sanskrit scholar and a scholar in Technical Tamil. He understands on a very deep level of the science behind the Shastras and hence builds buildings that are beautiful and vibrant.
Because he has conducted extensive research in this field, he is able to comprehend the intricacies of design, engineering, and construction at a level beyond most people who work in this field. The beauty and spiritual ambiance created by he and his team is beyond description. He is an advisor to The American University of Mayonic Science and Technology on technical matters and has contributed immeasurably to the development of the teaching of this body of knowledge. I highly recommend Sthapati Santhana Krishnan and his complete team of traditional architects, sthapatis, engineers and shilpis for any project anywhere in the world.
Dr. Jessie Mercay
Chancellor, The American University of Mayonic Science and Technology (www.aumscience.com)
Vastu Architect Michael Borden
I have studied and worked in concert with K & SK Architects for more than a decade. In that time, I have benefited many times from their deep insight of Vastu architecture and professional, level headed approach to creating a Vastu structure within the context of modern building technologies. There are few architects in the world today that have their unique combination of expertise, experience, and family heritage in Vastu design.
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