Category Archives: astrological synchronicities

Saturn and Moon conjunctions, Part 2 of Interview with Ryan Kurczak

This is the second part of an interview I did with Ryan Kurczak of Asheville Vedic Astrology.  We talk about the conjunctions of Saturn and the Moon.  Take a look if you are curious about the implications of this conjunction.

Also, just for fun, here is a picture of the Alligator that was in my back yard on the day that we did this interview.  The Gator and Crocodile are perfect symbols of Saturn.  FullSizeRender 2

The word for the sign of Capricorn in Vedic Astrology has always been “Makara”, which translated, literally means “crocodile”.  The crocodile is possibly the only animal we know of that has not changed or evolved in any way over hundreds of thousands of years, when we look at it in the fossil records.  You can see a skeleton of a crocodile or alligator that lived during the time of the dinosaurs, and it will be the same as a modern skeleton of a crocodile.  This perfectly symbolizes the nature of the sign Capricorn, which is the sign of Karma, and action.  The best actions we can do are those that are done so right and so effectively to begin with, that they stand the test of time and do not need to be redone or improved upon.  This is the nature of Capricorn, and Saturn as well.  To do something right the first time, to be patient, to be methodical, and when the right time comes, to execute the appropriate action.  Saturn takes 30 years to go around the zodiac, not like the Moon who makes the same course in a Month.  We can think of it like this: We want to do work and karmas that are so well done, that Saturn doesn’t have to go back and revisit that work for 30 more years.  Observing Alligators and Crocodiles in nature gives us a window into this type of consciousness, and this type of activity.   This is also why Mars, the planet of all kinds of action, is exalted in Capricorn.  The highest action is that which can stand the test of time.

The Significance of the “Ides of March”

César_(13667960455)

Possibly the last surviving statue of Caesar that was created during his lifetime.

We all know that the Ides of March was the date of the assassination of Julius Caesar, but it seems to have been conveniently forgotten that this is an astrological statement.  We also know that in Shakespeare’s famous “Julius Caesar” play, there is the warning to Caesar from the Astrologer/Reader figure to “Beware the Ides of March”.  The “ides” meant the middle of the month, and so this date was taken to mean March 15th or around that time since this was determined by the Moon.  This prediction did come true and Caesar was betrayed by his friends and ministers and was assassinated on this day.  So why did this particular time frame get singled out?  Is there any Astro-logic behind it?

Its actually a very simple logic behind this statement.  First off, we do not even have to know Caesar’s birth data to know that a great leader of a great nation such as Rome will obviously be ruled by the Sun.  This is the most likely case.  So let’s imagine Caesar to have been a Leo lagna (rising sign), and with also the Sun as his atmakaraka, which would likely be the case for someone who ruled the greatest nation at the time.  (Of course he may not have had this, but likely had something similar or would not have had the merit to have the life he had.)

If he was indeed a Leo, then during the time of the Ides of March, the Sun would be passing through Pisces, which is the eighth house for a Leo ascendant.  The eighth house is the house of death, sudden breaks and changes to one’s life, battles, betrayals, and drama to put it bluntly.  Right away we see that this is not the luckiest time for a King.  Also when the Sun is in pisces, it is weaker by nature because Pisces is a sign of rest and relaxation, but not a sign of great physical strength or power.  He also was 55 when he was killed, which is the natural dasa period of the Sun, so the transits of the Sun would have more bearing on him at this time in his life than other times as well.  But these three factors happen often for Sun ruled people, and not so often do they die or get betrayed, so there must be something more to it, but this is a good start.

Now we may recall that the Sun has two enemies, Saturn and Venus.  Saturn could have been anywhere at that time, so we will leave Saturn out of the equation.  But we do know that Venus would have had to have been either in Aquarius, Pisces, or Aries, as Venus cannot be any further from the Sun astronomically.  So focusing on Venus, if Venus was in Pisces, then that would mean that the Sun was being badly “starved” (thrishita, in sanskrit) if it was conjunct its enemy Venus.  This is a big problem for the Sun and prevents it from being able to do its job properly (Caesar, in this example).  This is even more of a threat because Venus is exalted in Pisces, and so at its strongest possible state!  So this Venus is strongly able to starve and afflict the Sun, and the Sun doesn’t have the power to overcome it on his own when in Pisces.  Now consider the fact that Venus happens to rule Ministers, and advisors to the King!  How did Caesar get betrayed?  His advisors, his ministers, his “Venus” in the symbolic sense, conspired against him and had him assassinated!  This fits perfectly with the most likely transits to be occurring on the Ides of March.  Get an exalted Venus starving the Sun in the eighth house of betrayal and death, this spells bad news for the Sun, which in this case was Julius Caesar.

This may have also had a relation to the Drekkana chart, the third divisional chart in Jyotish.  It is called the “Decanates” in Western Astrology, so we know that the Western tradition did have vargas at some point, and likely lost them over time. Perhaps this reader who warned Caesar also used the Decanates or Drekkana chart.  If so, they would have likely noticed that the Sun will move from the Cancer drekkana to the Scorpio drekkana around the time of the Ides of March.  The Sun would definitely be in the drekkana of Scorpio by the time the Ides of March came, as the Sun would have to be in the last 10 degrees of Pisces at this time.  It is a very basic fundamental of Astrology that Scorpio, the eighth sign, has the same qualities as the eighth house we have been discussing, and so Scorpio deals with all of the above themes of death, betrayal, sudden breaks and changes as well.  So the Sun’s placement in the Drekkana chart on the Ides of March is also showing the same theme of some type of fall from a height or drama occurring for Caesar at this time.

Oh and what does the Drekkana chart specifically deal with?  It is the specific chart we look at to see how one interacts with their siblings, their peers, their ministers, their associates, and the people that they work with who have similar goals.  In the context of Caesar, the Drekkana would show the karma’s relating to his Ministers and Advisors, and others who are working towards the similar goal of governing Rome.  So this chart is very relevant to the death of Caesar, as it is showing Scorpio/betrayal/death themes very clearly, and it was his associates that betrayed him and murdered him.  As many as 60 conspirators were said to have been involved with his death, so he had quite a lot of Drekkana associates to contend with!

This example is made with just the understanding of where two factors were placed in Caesar’s horoscope, the Sun and Venus.  Imagine how much more we could see if we had his whole chart?  We normally need to see things indicated from a number of different angles, all pointing to the same event, for that event to be able to be predicted confidently.  Likely there were even more themes indicating a similar fate for Caesar, but this is what we know was most likely occurring for the Sun and Venus.  Mars and Saturn were likely also involved in my opinion.  It definitely was not just a simple Sun transit that could have caused this.  It is my hope that the reader takes away from this example a more nuanced understanding of the sophistication of astrological predictions along with a newfound appreciation for this idiom.

 

 

Synchronicity of the Number Seven

7Why do things so often get grouped up into seven in this world?  Have you ever noticed that?  Not to say that the number actually occurs more than other numbers, but in the sense of the way we tend to see, group, and categorize things.  When we think about our common use and grouping of things, seven seems to have a significance, dare I say, even something sacred about it.  It happens with really big things too, like the seven continents of the world, the seven seas, seven openings or cavities in the human face, seven colors in the rainbow or visible spectrum of light that we can see, and almost all mammals have seven cervical vertebrae.  These are things we cannot seem to change very much, but what is equally interesting is that there are also many things that we as human beings have intentionally perceived or classified as being seven in type or quality, when we could probably have divided them into other numbers if we wanted to.

Let me give some examples:

  • There are seven notes on the musical diatonic scale, but other ways of dividing the notes up have also been created.  But this is a very popular one, probably the most popular.
  • We have this idea in folklore of many different cultures (including American/European and Indian)  of seven years of bad luck coming to someone for various reasons.
  • There are said to be seven deadly sins.
  • There are seven wonders of the ancient world.
  • There are said to be seven heavens in Islam and many, many other philosophies as well as occult systems of knowledge.
  • Seven horizontal rows are in the periodic table.
  • According to the Baltimore classification, there are seven types of viruses.
  • Seven is the neutral ph value between acidity and alkalinity.
  • The Bible is overflowing with a sacramental implication of the number seven, the most commonly known being the beginning part wherein the Earth was created in seven days (it also clearly mentions the creation of the “heavenly bodies” for “Signs and seasons”, aka Astrology, by the way).
  • There are seven temples in the Book of Revelations (Which Edgar Cayce also revealed to each relate to a certain chakra and the sins most associated with that chakra/state of consciousness.)
  • Seven is the sum of any two opposite sides of dice.
  • In India there is the Sapta Rishis, or the Seven Sages.
  • There are also the Seven Sages of Greece.
  • There are seven main chakras in Yogic philosophy, also seven according to psychic Edgar Cayce.
  • Seven main endocrine glands (gonads, leydig, adrenal, thymus, thyroid, pineal/hypothalamus, and pituitary.)
  • We have seven days of the week, which is so ancient that we actually do not know where this originated. The Norse had a seven day week which is where our English names of Friday (Freya/Venus day) and Thursday (Thors/Jupiters day), and Wednesday (Odin/Mercury day).  The ancient Indians also had a seven day week, which makes one wonder if any other cultures of antiquity also had this tradition.

There are probably many more classifications of seven in number that I am not recalling, but I feel this has made a strong enough case as these are big parts of our human life.  Also you will notice that fiction writers love to use the number seven in their fiction works, simply google the number seven and you will see one after another fantasy book that has something to do with “Seven gemstones of power” or what have you.  A modern example of this can be seen in the hugely popular Game of Thrones HBO series, which is based on fiction books.  It takes place in a medieval Europe (Kali Yuga-style) fantasy realm and their is of course an emphasis put on the “Seven Kingdoms of Westeros”, which is where the majority of the story takes place.  There are also many different faiths throughout the kingdoms but the most popular faith is the “Faith of the Seven”, interestingly enough.  Obviously this is influenced from the actual medieval European times when the seven planets were worshipped as deities.  It is also made very clear that “The Seven” is one deity, that manifests itself into seven aspects.  This is identical with European and Indian style Astrology.  { NOTE: Many people still think that Hinduism is polytheistic (believing in many Gods) but if they actually researched it they would learn quickly that it is monotheistic.  Hindus acknowledge only one God, but with many different names, aspects, and forms. This is like how there is just one Sun that lights the world, but it can be seen to appear differently depending on where one is on the world, at sunrise, sunset, or midday.  We don’t say that there is a different Sun at sunset, even though it may look different than the mid day Sun, with its bright red and orange shades.  In the same way, Brahma is the same as Vishnu, and Vishnu is the same as Shiva. }   Also even the seven different deities are pretty much the same in this fictional series as they actually are in Astrology, which may have been intentional or not on the part of the writer, but because these archetypes are so prominent in our consciousness, I would not be surprised if the Author of these stories just thought them up himself.  (Read the descriptions of “The Seven” here and see for yourself)

Why is this the case? Why does the number seven keep coming up?  Could it be that there is something within the human psychology and the way that we are designed that makes us see things in terms of seven?  Well, the reason I am bringing all this up is because it is very peculiar in the light of the Jyotish philosophy of India.  In Jyotish/Vedic Astrology philosophy, all things that exist on Earth are “produced” by the seven planets that we can see with the naked eye, and can, in a sense, see us.  And so there are seven basic states of consciousness, that when mixed, produce all the varied forms and types of consciousness on Earth.  Each of the visible planets relate to one of these states of consciousness, and each state is an aspect of the divine.  Each planet is a “karaka”, which literally means a “producer” of various things in your life.  Based on one’s past life karma, one will incarnate with these various producers in the proper harmony to produce or not produce the life that this soul needs to have for its own development and growth beyond just this one life.

So now we can see that this number seven coming up so much is really a reflection of the seven planets and how they mix and create life on Earth as it appears to be.  It validates Astrology, that we have seven of most things, either uncontrollably, or by our own arbitrary intellectual divisions.

To see how this works, let us take the human body as an example:

  1. The Sun produces the bones and the immune system, which are one system in the context of astrological truth, but not current medical books. This is because the immune system relies on the mineral supply stored within the bones to regulate the health of the body. So in a birth chart, a weak Sun in the rasi chart and the D30 (trimsamsa) chart can indicate that one does not have a lot of strength in the bones and may have low mineral density, or low mineral absorption, and should eat a mineral rich diet to balance this.  A strong Sun person can eat a lot poorer quality food before there bones start to suffer, because they will tend to have better mineral reserves overall.  Strong Sun/Leo people tend to eat a lot of meat and even though meat always leaves a toxic residue on the body, these people can handle that more efficiently than others, and they also have a stronger Agni to burn off these toxins as well.
  2. The Moon produces the blood of the body, the ocean within the body.  A weak or afflicted Moon means that one will need to be more mindful of foods that dirty the blood, because this will happen more easily for them if they eat poor foods.  They may also have emotional issues as well as a result of having not the best blood quality. They may need to avoid table salt in favor of good quality sea salt, and add an extra amount of the healthy salty tastes like lettuce. A strong moon person will crave healthier foods for their blood naturally, and will have better blood flow and health overall as a result of having a strong “producer” of blood, a strong moon influence.
  3. Mars produces the nervous system, and the nerve tissue within the body. A weak or afflicted Mars indicates that one has nerve problems.  They may get nervous too easily, not what you want in a profession like surgery or war.  A strong Mars person can hold the knife steady, and that is why a surgeon usually has a strong Mars “producer” in his chart, producing the healthy nerves needed to do such a job. This is also why someone who isn’t willing to stand up and fight is said to “not have the nerve”.
  4. Mercury produces the cognitive/sense/integumentary system which is to say bluntly that Mercury produces our senses and cognitive ability.  A bad mercury means one does not perceive and cognize things accurately.  Now we can understand why Mercury is always involved in combinations for mental insanity in the old Indian Texts.  A good mercury will be the opposite, and will contribute to rational thinking.
  5. Jupiter produces the endocrine system, an incredibly important system for how one feels and for unfolding the spiritual capacities within us.  An afflicted Jupiter means that one does not produce an ideal endocrine system health, and as a result may have hormonal imbalances or other chemical imbalances that interfere with their happiness and emotional health.  A strong Jupiter indicates that one has produced a healthy endocrine system and feels good in their own body.  It is also noteworthy to mention that in deep meditative states, the endocrine system secretes powerful hormones and antioxidants, that make you very happy, and Jupiter is also the karaka or “producer” of one’s happiness and contentment.
  6. Venus produces the digestive system, and so a weak Venus means one does not absorb nutrients and digest well. This means the body loses its vitality more quickly because it requires more of its own vital energy (Virya, which Venus rules) to digest the food and assimilate it than it should.  A strong Venus does the opposite, it helps one absorb and digest well, and leads to a healthy and well built body.  This is also why Venus rules rejuvenation, as the health of the digestive system has a big say on whether one will rejuvenate easily or not.
  7. Saturn produces the muscular system of the body. The part of the body that does all the labor, basically.  Saturn also produces one’s laborers, servants, and lower level employees, which play the same role but in the context of a business.  A weak Saturn shows weak muscles, and so one tends to feel lazier.  A strong Saturn shows strong muscles and good lymph and so one will tend to not feel so lazy.  A strong Saturn is also associated with accomplishing many deeds in life, and here we can see how that relates on a physical level, to the dignity and strength of the “producer” of the muscles, Saturn.  Someone who feels lazy all the time is of course not going to accomplish as much as the opposite type of person.

 

In this way, the seven grahas mix and produce all things for us, and in accord with our karmas that we are meant to experience in this life.  This same idea is the logic behind how we see the good or bad karmas connected to each area of life for a person, and is a fundamental concept for practicing Astrology, both western and eastern.  Now we can reflect and see, that it is no surprise that in this world of seven colors, seven seas, and seven continents, that we also have seven visible lights in the sky, guiding us along the path of our Soul in this incarnation.

 

Christmas from the Astrology Viewpoint

seasonalvariations-editedThere is an astrological meaning behind the Christmas holiday that even many Astrologers are not aware of.  It is actually a very important day and time of year for a wide array of civilizations and cultures on this planet, and the reason for this is completely astrological in nature.  In this post the focus will be mainly on comparing the Christian holiday with the Vedic/Yogic perspective, but it should be noted that this time is incredibly important for almost every culture on this planet and has been for thousands of years.

From the standpoint of Yogic and Vedic philosophy, Christmas day just so happens to be the first day in six months that can at least generally be considered each year to be an auspicious day.  This is because it is the first day in six months that the Sun begins to noticeably move north, and the present day lasts longer than the day before.  This is not popularly recognized, so don’t be surprised if you are a Hindu/Sanatan Dharma adherent reading this and you do not understand what I am talking about or how Christmas is relating to the Vedic traditions.  Please bear with me, as there is a lot to explain to make this point clear.  And remember, the aim of this post is only to add more spiritual significance to this day as a Christian holiday and also as a special day for all people on Earth, because of the astronomical activity that occurs on this day.  There is no intention to take anything away from the Christian religion or any religion. I have the utmost respect for all religions and enlightenment traditions.

The Sun Moves North on the Winter Solstice

First we need to know why the Solstice matters in the first place.  The reason the solstice and equinox times matter is because these are the places where the Sun noticeably changes its course, and where there is a change in the light of the world.  This in turn creates the seasons, the natural cycles, the sense of time, and the balance and harmony that makes life on Earth so beautiful.  At the Winter Solstice (Dec 21-25th) the Sun reaches its lowest point on the ecliptic (The path that it appears to make around the Earth each day), and stays at that lowest point for three more days.  Then on the next day it finally begins to noticeably rise at a more northern place.  This day (Dec 25th) is the first day since late June that the daylight, the light of this world, lingers longer than the day before.  That is a very big deal, though it may not seem like it in this modern age, with the common person being so divorced from nature. But take away the smart phones and electricity and this knowledge becomes the difference between surviving winter or a painful death. Now we can see why this date has been so important to cultures and civilizations since time immemorial.  This may be even more appropriate in very northern parts of the world such as Siberia and Russia, where Christmas may have originated. Here the Sun can hardly even be seen at this three day period where it is at its lowest point.  Then on the 25th, it rises and continues to do so for six months until the Summer Solstice point, on June 22nd.  At the midway point, we find the Spring Equinox, the place where there begins to be more daylight than night and thus, the beginning of Aries, as all of nature cyclically charges forth into being at that time. The Summer Solstice point is where the Sun appears to stall for a moment, and then begins backing down or moving south for six months, thus this space has the qualities of the sign of Cancer, the crab.  Crabs appear to go forward and then stall, and start moving sideways back in the opposite direction, which is exactly what the Sun can be observed to do here.  Cancer is also the most Yin sign, the sign of the divine feminine, and in many ways it is like the Sun is relaxing and being more Yin at this point, after six months of charging north. (Read more about that here).  Then at the Fall equinox in late September marks the point where there begins to be more night than day, and thus the Sun “falls” in the sign of Libra.  At this point the Sun is starting to move south quickly and the days are noticeably shorter.  Then we get back to the Winter Solstice point and the cycle repeats.  Notice that these four points mark the “cardinal” (or moveable) signs in both Western and Vedic Astrology.  This is the rough logic behind that, but if you want to read more details on how this relates to the nature of the cardinal signs, read this older blog post.

How this relates to Christianity

So what better of a time of year to celebrate the birth of the “Son of God” then the exact astronomical time when the physical “Sun of God” has just been noticeably reborn?  It’s even more interesting when we consider that in the Northern regions of the Earth the Sun can literally not be seen for three days, because it is so far south, hence a perfect symbol for death and resurrection. The northern areas of Russia and Siberia seem to have the oldest connections to the reindeer and other symbols associated with Christmas.  It is well known and well documented that the Christian tradition wisely co-opted these symbols to strengthen their own relevance at the time.  And it certainly seems to fit nicely….But we really don’t know when Christ was born, so he may have been born at that time or not; we really just don’t know.  But it certainly does make sense to celebrate the birth of Jesus at this time though, due to the astrological synchronization explained above.

How this relates to Hinduism

In the Hindu/Yogic perspective, the time of the winter solstice, and the Sun’s change of direction to move north is incredibly important.  This same time is called the Makara Sankranti, which can be translated to “The ingress into Capricorn”.  Sankranti is Sanskrit for ingress, basically.  Makara is sanskrit for crocodile, which is what Capricorn is the symbol of in Vedic Astrology, and most likely in the original western astrology as well, but that will have to be explained in another post.  So this is an important time and it traditionally is celebrated as such by flying kites and other activities as it is said to be an auspicious date.  It is currently celebrated about three weeks late by most in India due to calculation errors that put the Capricorn ingress around January 14th.  The Solar ingress celebrations are meant to be calculated with the seasonal Tropical zodiac and this is something that Sri Yukteswar was very adamant about.  To explain this fully would also take another post, but understand that this same celebration is actually supposed to coincide with Christmas, for the exact same reasons as Christmas does; because the Sun moves north.

This Northern change of the Solar energy is also called the Uttarayana, in Vedic philosophy.  Uttara means “North” in Sanskrit, and Ayana means “movement”, or “time pass” in Sanskrit.  The Uttarayana has been mentioned in ancient Vedic texts as being extremely important from the spiritual perspective, and this basis is astrological.  Any auspicious deed or project we want to accomplish, we want to start it when the Sun is moving north.  This way we start the project in rhythm with nature and all of the elements, as all of nature is growing with each new day as the Sun is moving north.  In the same way, whatever projects we start at this time will “coincide” and therefore be more likely to grow stronger each day along with the Sun, the Soul of the Universe.  We want to do things in harmony with the Universal Soul whenever possible.

So Christmas day marks the first generally great day to do auspicious deeds in six months!  This is not to say that for six months of the year one should avoid doing good deeds, not at all.  In the six months that the Sun moves south one can find many other shorter windows of time when the muhurta/electional astrology factors are all lining up in a fortunate way for the goal in mind…. But if the goal in mind is very important and it can wait, it should wait for this time, the Uttarayana.  And then if possible, one should have an astrologer find the exact day and hour and minute that one should implement this action, if it is a truly important undertaking and one wants to make the best of it.  This way whatever negative karma one has from birth that may prevent the full realization of the goal can be minimized and negated by choosing the most auspicious date to begin that would neutralize those negative factors.  This is much of the basis behind Electional Astrology, or Muhurta as it is called in India.

Now it makes sense why we all give gifts on this day

snowqueenbycharlesrobinson

Snow Queen by Charles Robinson

Now we can see why it is so astronomically perfect to give gifts to each other on December 25th.  It is the first auspicious day in six months, and what better way to make use of that than by giving gifts to all of your loved ones!  Its also very interesting because this date was mentioned in the ancient Indian text, the Mahabarata, and one character refuses to die until the Sun starts moving north, because he knows how much more auspicious it is to die when the Sun starts moving north, then when it is moving south.  There are spiritual reasons for this significance as well, and one will notice that generally more saintly and spiritually evolved beings tend to leave their bodies as the Sun moves north.  Likewise more people tend to commit suicide as the Sun moves south and particularly around November and December, when the Sun is very low and weak in strength.  The Sun is our self-esteem, and a weak Sun leads to depression more easily.  It is likely that people who have difficult depression placements in their charts get more heavily impacted by this weak Sun transit than the average person, but most people will agree that November and December can be times when depression seems to set in more easily.

There is a lot more to this cycle and how it affects us psychologically, but this will have to wait for another post, as this one is long enough for now.  In the next post we will go into how this relates to Yogic philosophy and the esoteric meaning of the Sun.

Aquarius Linked to Celebrities, Study Finds

WaterPot_1_Rr_01.jpga2bf8431-4ecb-4b57-9394-a5391ab8c141OriginalA new study on Astrology came out in May of 2015 that indicates more celebrities to be born in the time of year from December to March.  It particularly noted Aquarius to be the most likely, followed by Pisces.  The study was done by Dr. Mark Hamilton from the University of Connecticut.  It was published in the journal, Comprehensive Psychology.  The research was only conducted on 300 people, which is not enough people in my opinion.  The work was of course criticized voraciously just by the virtue of it being a study that could possibly validate Astrology.  One thing was hard to ignore however, a very obvious fact that the researchers just did not seem to be informed about.  They did not seem to be aware of the fact that Aquarius is considered the sign of “Influential People”, and celebrities, as a whole.  It seemed baffling to me that no one made this point in any of the articles that I found about this research online, and seems to point again to the sad fact that most people who criticize astrology simply have not researched it enough for themselves.  They simply do not know anything about the signs or what it all means themselves, and so would not know what to look for even when they find it.  This research is an example.  Read on to see more elaboration on the connection between Aquarius and celebrities:

To begin with, Aquarius is the 11th sign, and the last air sign.  The Air signs relate to our desires, to kama, in sanskrit.  The 11th sign is the last sign of our desires therefore, and is where we gain our desires, essentially.  This is why the 11th house (which has similar qualities to the 11th sign, Aquarius) is the house of gains.  This is a fundamental rule of jyotish practice.  All planets are good in the 11th.  And in a very similar way, celebrities are usually associated with the gain of some desire.  We project our desires on them, sometimes even to a degree of idolatry. This only happens because we somehow relate them to the fulfillment of a strong desire within us.

Aquarius, and also the 11th house, is associated with our dreams.  Not the dreams we have when we are sleeping, which is the 12th house, or 12th sign Pisces.  The 11th sign and house is our conscious dreams that we aspire to realize.  For example, if one has Venus or Jupiter (gentle, lucky and fortunate planets) aspecting on the 11th house, or to the 11th sign Aquarius, that is one indication for a greater likelihood that this person will achieve something very important that they dreamed about doing at some point in their life.  Thats essentially what most celebrities are, people who actually DID the thing that they dreamed about, or at least got closer to their dream then the average person.  So in astrological terms, most celebrities are people who have a strong 11th house.

Aquarius is a sign of humanitarians, and it is funny how celebrities are always getting involved in all kinds of humanitarian activities.  It has even become a sort of stereotype about the ultra rich and famous types like Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie.  This makes sense when we remember that Aquarius is ruled by Saturn, the planet of service and Karma Yoga.  Aquarius individuals often have a strong sense of emptiness or lack within themselves, and so they often try to do things to improve the quality of life for all concerned, as some small way to remedy the situation at least for others.  This is why Aquarius is the “water bearer”, and the “maker of tanks and ponds” according to Jaimini.  Providing water is perhaps the most basic need that all humans have, so Aquarius is just about trying to relieve the burdens of life on Earth, thus humanitarian activity.

This leads to another important point about Aquarius, the emptiness within the water pot. (Read more about this, here.)  Having an Aquarius sun sign means automatically that the individual’s Sun is “starved” by Saturn, its enemy.  This is the defining mark of an Aquarius, the tendency to feel and act off the feeling that no matter what they do in life and with themselves and in the world, they still don’t feel very good about themselves.  The Aquarius person just suffers from low self esteem. Period.  I refuse to sugar coat this like so many astrologers do.  This is because the Sun represents our deep down soul nature, and Saturn our lack.  When the Sun gets starved by Saturn one tries and tries to find some action (Sun) that will rid them of the low self esteem (Saturn). It varies in strength depending on the chart in question, but it is often quite difficult to deal with, and usually just takes time and acceptance, which Saturn rules.  As time goes on we naturally mature and accept ourselves and move past the low self esteem feelings.

Whats interesting is that this psychological issue is seen quite evidently in the lives of celebrities.  How often do celebrities have breakdowns or turn out to do things that indicate an incredibly low sense of self esteem, which surprises us?  It happens quite often, go read a tabloid or trashy news website if you do not believe me.  Celebrities are often depressed and getting addicted to drugs or other vices, and these are both natural tendencies that the Aquarius individual struggles with, as they try to fill the symbolic emptiness within their water pot.  Thats why the old Indian books relate Aquarius as the most likely sign to be a drunkard or a sexual deviant of some kind.  We certainly see similar trends with celebrities in our modern culture.

So while there are many types of celebrities, and certainly many astrological configurations that could produce them as such, the Aquarius sun-sign celebrity is actually not likely going to be any happier with themselves after becoming a successful celebrity.  Aquarius is described as cold and not very charming or fun to talk to, and celebrities are often surprisingly rude and cold people.  Otherwise why would we make it such a big deal when one of them is not rude to us?  We are always like “Oh he was so cool to me”.  Why shouldn’t he have been? Everyone else is.  But the Aquarius isn’t, because their self esteem is starved by Saturn.  This noticeable trait has become a part of our common conceptions about celebrities.

From the viewpoint of Astrology, the Aquarian or Celebrity individual will actually have to go the opposite direction they usually have been going and become their most natural selves. They have to start doing what they love and stop doing what they think they should do, or what they do to compensate for who they think they need to be.  They have to start accepting themselves and their low self esteem and make peace with it, instead of constantly trying to ignore or forget it, or do something to compensate for it.  This is very hard to do, and usually we dont even start to notice the need for this type of psychological maturation until after our first Saturn return, by around the age of 30, give or take a year or two.  Theres more to it then that, but this help should clarify this point a little bit more, and help us see the logic as to why there might be more celebrities born in the time of Aquarius.

 

 

 

 

Aries and the Active Expression of Virtue.

“The active expression of virtue gives rise to the keenest intelligence.” – Sri Yukteswar  (1855-1936)

 

sri_yukteswar_by_yogananda

Swami Sri Yukteswar, a self realized yogi and astrologer.

The above quote by the yogi Swami Sri Yukteswar is ripe with spiritual and astrological truth.  When we act virtuously, we start to see things more clearly and intelligently.  Likewise, when we really know something our actions tend to demonstrate that knowledge in a natural fashion.  This can be attractive and appealing to see someone like this.  It is possibly for this reason that saints and mystics often seem so attractive or magnetizing to spiritual seekers, because they have gone through a great range of experience and their actions naturally demonstrate such experience in a spontaneous way.  Also in the opposite sense, when we think we know something but really do not, our actions can be a clear give away of our lack of knowledge.  There is a clear relationship that can be seen here when we look at the zodiac, between our “active expression of virtue” and the development of intelligence within us.

To fully see this relationship, lets clear up a few things about intelligence in the context of an astrological chart.  When I am speaking about intelligence, I mean specifically the ability to arrive at the correct conclusion, to arrive at truth.  And in life we see that different methods can be used to arrive at the same correct conclusion.  Some people use logic to figure something out, others use feeling and emotions to figure the same thing out and get the same conclusion.  In the same way, each planet has a unique type of intelligence that it expresses.  For example, Mars would be the intelligence of logic.  Venus is the intelligence of poetry, the ability to grasp the meaning behind the words, the real heart of the message.  This post will not go into each planets intelligence, which would require an entire post in itself.

With this having been said, all the grahas give intelligence but the main one that Astrologers tend to emphasize is Mercury, as he rules the “buddhi”, the Intellect.  But when we read the Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra, the Sage Parashara gives the descriptions of the different planets.  In this, he does not describe Mercury as being intelligent necessarily.   He does start off, however, by saying that the Sun is intelligent.  This is very interesting.  He gives many complements to Mercury as well as the other grahas but does not assign intelligence to Mercury, and instead gives it to the Sun.  So the implication is that the Sun is the real planet that thinks through situations and arrives at truth.  (In case you were wondering, he describes the Moon as “All knowing”, which is similar to how many western astrologers attribute the Moon to a pyschic, right brain type of ability to arrive at truth)

I have noticed in studying charts that when Mercury is joined the Sun, which is happening 1/3 of the time anyway, then Mercury gives intelligence yes.  This is also called a Budha Aditya Yoga, which is said to give intelligence amongst other things.  When not connected to the Sun however, I do not necessarily see Mercury giving intelligence in the sense of arriving at truth.  (I can hear the astrologers gasping while reading this…bear with me)  Now if strong, this person’s Mercury will still be able to cognize quite well, and of course still be able to memorize and organize data very well.  This person may speak very fast and sharply and come off as very smart and intelligent.  They may have lots of information to articulate and be multi-talented and skillful.  But that is where we get mistaken.  Those qualities are not intelligence.  One can organize information extremely well, regardless of whether it is true or untrue information.  One can be very multi talented and know a lot of things but still miss the truth of life, and the truth of any given situation.  These days we sometimes seem to mistake having information about something with having intelligence, or knowledge of that thing.  These are different words and have different meanings.  Nowadays people consider having googled something to equate to having “knowledge” of that thing.  They are mistaken.  When you read old books the word “knowledge” did not mean “information” and was never used in that context.  It meant experience and the direct knowing of something that one gets from experiencing it for themselves.  For example, you know that you are you, and you don’t have to look that up or ask anyone else to convince you of being yourself, because you know this from experience.  This would be “knowledge”, as opposed to “information”.

So while Mercury gives the intellect, that intellect can see things a million different ways and until one is Self-Realized there is no promise that Mercury will give the intelligence to see the real truth in life.  That is the “keenest intelligence” that Sri Yukteswar is referring to, and that, as Parashara states, emanates from the Sun.

How we see this in the Zodiac  

We can see how and why the Sun would give this intelligence by examining the mechanics of the zodiac itself.  Aries is the sign of virtue, action, inspiration and nobility.  Thus, Aries is the sign of the “active expression of virtue” that Sri Yukteswar mentions. The Sun gets exalted here, meaning it is the strongest it can possibly be.  So the highest or “keenest intelligence” (The strongest the Sun can be) is brought about by developing the qualities of Aries, the “active expression of virtue”.  Pretty cool huh?

Also from the sign of Aries, the Sun rules the 5th house from there, Leo.  The 5th house is said to be the house of the mind, and the intelligence we use to manage our lives.  So when we act virtuously in order to manage our lives more effectively, that is like the Aries, putting the 5th lord, the Sun, in the first house, of one’s action and expression, and in this case the sign of the same things, Aries.  And what does that do?  That makes the Sun exalted, as strong as it can be.  And when the Solar force is strongest the innate intelligence we have is strongest, and we can be “King” of our life.  This is the logic and mechanics behind this great quote from Sri Yukteswar.  He was also an advanced Jyotishi, so perhaps he was aware of this connection in the zodiac as well as in his real life experience.

This is the Astrological reason why, at least on planet Earth, we can have all kinds of ideas or information, and we may think it to be true or not true…But until we apply it in our lives and act from it, and see the result, we do not really know if that information or idea is true or not. Remember that real intelligence is brought about by virtuous actions.  The results of this truth are very evident in the spiritual growth world nowadays.  Many people  can absorb spiritual ideas quickly, and can read spiritual texts and understand them very well, but don’t apply the truths in day to day life nearly enough, and then wonder why they haven’t experienced authentic spiritual growth.  The people who shine with spiritual happiness are the people who have applied spiritual truths in their lives, and in their day to day actions, and have expressed these virtues in real time, not just on the internet or in their minds.  We have to apply what we learn or we get a sort of “mental indigestion”. This happens when we just go about reading one after another metaphysical, or spiritual self help book, but never implement it into daily life.  For this we need the strength of the Sun and Mars, the two warrior caste/fire element planets to give us the courage to act virtuously.  This is also where a jyotish reading can help someone, because if we see that they are a spiritual seeker, but the Sun and Mars are afflicted, they probably have difficulties with actively expressing virtues. In this case we can advise certain mantras, gemstones, meditations, behavior adjustments, and other remedial measures to combat this negative karma and make the best of the situation at hand.  In this way we can see why Jyotish was such a beloved tool of Yogis seeking Self-Realization, as it reveals the obstacles that are in the way of experiencing the goal of our incarnation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why is Saturn Related to Brahma?

“Vahni (Fire), Ambu (Water), Shikhija (Skanda), Vishnu, Vidauja (Indra), Sachi, and Ka (Brahma), O’ Twice Born, from the Sun and the other Grahas in their order are known the Devas.” – Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra Chapter 3:18

This quote is from a foundation text of Vedic Astrology, the Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra, on the allotment of different deities to the Grahas (The Sanskrit word for the planets).  These are not the only associations that the Grahas have to different deities, however.  It should be remembered that all the many deities of Hinduism are considered to act through the agency of the different Grahas for their purposes and responsibilities as custodians of the various forces of nature on Planet Earth.  So while this list is not meant to be the only correlation of Deities to Grahas, it is a very insightful list to consider, shedding much valuable information on the nature of the different energies of the Planets.  In this post, for brevity’s sake, we will just be focusing on Saturn’s correlation to Brahma as it is quite interesting to contemplate.

This relation of Saturn to Brahma is very confusing and hard to understand for most.  If you study Jyotish you are probably already wondering where I am going with this, but lets first make sure we understand a little about Saturn.  He is in many ways the toughest planet to understand… Saturn rules death, lack, loss, negative karma, disease, depression, sorrow, and those things we must do that we are not good at doing.  When well placed in the birth chart, He is the planet that does the hardest jobs that no one else cares to do.  He does it without concern for himself and just for the sake of others. When Saturn is weak one is not able to do the hard things they know they must do for success and therefore usually are not very successful in the world, as most successful people in the world didn’t get that way by avoiding or not wanting to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty.  Saturn is the one who does that. Jaimini says that if Saturn is in the 10th from the swamsha (atmakaraka in navamsa) the person will live a life of “accomplished deeds”.  Meaning this person gets things done in the world.

Mythological image of Brahma.  Depicted with four heads, each continually reciting one of the four vedas.  Even his mythological image seems much more busy at work like Saturn, when compared to Vishnu and Shiva who are both mythologically seen lounging on a coiled serpent, or sitting in blissful samadhi.

Mythological image of Brahma. Depicted with four heads, each continually reciting one of the four vedas. Even his mythological image seems much more busy at work like Saturn, when compared to Vishnu and Shiva who are both mythologically seen lounging on a coiled serpent, or sitting in blissful samadhi.

The word for the absolute God without attributes is Brahman in Hinduism.  The names of the threefold aspect of God as Creator, Preserver, and Destroyer are Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva respectively.  This correlates to Christianity and its holy trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, actually.  Brahma is the God of creation, he creates but does not get involved with creation and does not destroy or transform it, those are Vishnu and Shiva’s roles… Everybody knows that, so what is my point?  Well Saturn is not the planet of creativity, so you would think Jupiter or Sun would be related to the creative aspect of God (Brahma).  But they arent… Why is that?

I am not asserting to know exactly why that is, but here are some interesting ideas about why that may be the case:

Brahma is the force that releases just the right finite amount of God’s infinite potential of energy to create a galaxy and cause creation to occur.  Too much or too little of God’s infinite potentiality would cause tremendous imbalances in the grand scheme of the creation… So Brahma is that force which releases just the right amount of energy, but not too much.  In this way we can see that for creation to occur most perfectly from God’s standpoint, there needs to be a Saturnian element of restraint involved for the creation to be harmonious and properly balanced…If new worlds were constantly created before the old ones got destroyed then everything would be off and their would be less purpose to creation.  In a smaller way this is why I think the yogic guidelines Patanjali gave in the Yoga Sutras called one of the Yamas “Brahmacharya”.  In plain english, this is one of the 10 do’s and dont’s of Raja/Kriya Yoga and it is normally translated as “celibacy”.  This is a bad job of translating though.  Brahma means God’s creative energy, and Charya means “going, driving”.  So it simply means “going the way that God goes”.  And God doesn’t waste It’s creative energy in frivolous sexual pursuits.  So Brahmacharya really means to use one’s creative energy wisely and like God would, so as not to waste the spiritual force generated from Yoga practice.  Its true that sexual over-indulgence is the fastest way to waste that force for most people and so this is why it has slowly come to mean that, though it really means much more.  Talking excessively, being on social media unnecessarily, and eating bad foods that take too much energy to digest are just as obvious and popular ways of wasting one’s spiritual force in this modern age as sexual indulgence is.  And in the same way but on a smaller level, when Saturn is strong in a birth chart that individual will usually be much more focused on important works and not be as easily distracted or waste its energy on over-socializing, overeating, or overstimulation in general.  And so from the perspective of God it may be more that creation is not real, it is an illusion, but it is Brahma/Saturn’s job to continue this illusion for the purpose of individuals to grow beyond whatever separates them from God and to eventually unite with God.  So in this sense creation is very much an “Accomplished Deed” and thus related to Saturn.  Also we must remember that we dont incarnate unless there is some Karmic debt (Saturn) that must be worked out.  Even having too much good karma can cause a need to reincarnate and live an awesome life, which happens often for Saints and Yogis.  Even this is still a karmic debt that must be spent before the positive and negative karmic-balancing scale can go back to zero and one can finally become liberated.  Its like a bank account balance, it has to be zero to close out (get liberated), so a positive balance must be spent in an incarnation, and a negative balance must be worked off in an incarnation.  So when we see that Creation is actually just this path we must navigate to get beyond our lack and separation, and to merge back with God, we can see how similar it is to Saturn’s astrological role.

Here is another way to see how creation is related to Saturn, and this is basically paraphrasing what Ernst Wilhelm has written in his book Graha Sutras, so all credit goes to him on this perspective:  In order to have creation, the Absolute God must hide himself and be “veiled” in order to make creation seem real and separate from himself.  The veil is called “maya” in sanskrit and is created by each person’s “Avidya”- the ignorance of their soul nature as pure Spirit.  Saturn is responsible for each person’s ignorance and so this is how we can see his connection to creation from the perspective of having to create illusion/separation/lack from our real Self.  Ernst even goes so far as to say that Saturn rules the flow of life force into the nerves, making us sense things as cold/hot, fast/slow, dark/bright, etc. and not as God essentially.  So in this way Brahma requires and uses Saturn to create the world and the ignorance of our soul nature that so often accompanies our incarnation.

Another interesting factor is that Brahma is the most neglected of the trinity by far, as there are very few temples to Him and He is hardly mentioned compared to Vishnu and Shiva.  Saturn is similarly always the most neglected planet as well!  This is really because Saturn is misunderstood, and gets blamed for being the worst planet, but it is really because He has the most enemies from the standpoint of the lajjitaadi avasthas, and so therefore on average will be the weakest and most afflicted planet.  So then when his dasa or transits occur, we experience those weaknesses and difficulties.  But this is not because Saturn wants to wreck our life, it is because our Saturn is often not strong enough to deal with all the negative karma that we have and so during his periods there are difficulties.

Astrological Reflections on Nikola Tesla

tesla pic

Nikola Tesla, at the height of his career.

“Within a few years a simple and inexpensive device, readily carried about, will enable one on land or sea, to hear the principle news, to hear a speech, a lecture, a song or play of a musical instrument, conveyed from any other region of the globe. ”     Nikola Tesla, 1856-1943

 

Nikola Tesla is one of the most profoundly interesting, influential, and eccentric figures of the last two centuries.  In the above quote he predicts the advent of smartphones. He did not just conceive the idea, he was the one to invent the technology.  I was unable to find the year that he said this quote*, but we know he died in 1943.  Take a moment to think about how significant that prediction is….  He invented pretty much everything that has made the modern world what it is today, including the alternating current, radio, X-ray technology, remote controls, electric motors, robotics, lasers *, wireless communication and even “limitless free energy”, according to this blog.  We still dont have this last bit of technology, because Tesla was being funded by JP Morgan.  When Morgan realized there was no money to be made off of giving free energy to everyone, he stopped funding Tesla along with making sure that he would never have enough money to succeed in his altruistic goal of providing free energy to all.  This is also part of why he was not as popular as other inventors, because he did not care to make money himself, and in a sense he was a threat to the fortunes of those who did care about money.

A man of such profound karmic impact as Nikola Tesla should logically be expected to have a unique birth chart to match, and its true, though this writing will only scratch the surface…There is so much noteworthy information to share about this man that it will take more than one blog post… In this article, for the sake of brevity, I will focus on just a few unique characteristics this man had, and how they related to the karmas indicated in his natal chart.  If you aren’t familiar with his contributions and eccentricities you may want to watch a documentary on him, or read up on him here, to get the full appreciation.

Nikola Tesla does not have an exact birth time, but it is said that he was born at the stroke of midnight on July 9/10 1856 in the Austrian Empire (modern day Croatia).  He was born in the middle of a lightning storm as well, and as the story goes, midway through the birth, the midwife wrung her hands and declared the lightning to be a bad omen, saying the baby would be a child of darkness.  Tesla’s mother responded saying “No. He will be a child of light”….The mothers instinct again proved correct, as it usually does, in that he did go on to be the foremost master of light and its manipulation and application.  He invented fluorescent lighbulbs and also made the more practical technology for electricity, the alternating current, which we still use today.

Tesla’s Natal Chart –  As it happened, right around midnight on the 9th/10th of July 1856 the sign of Aries was just about to end and the sign of Taurus was just about to rise.  At exact midnight, Taurus was rising at 1 or 2 degrees.  We know that the exact time of midnight may have been difficult to discern exactly back in an Austrian countryside in 1856, and so we cannot be 100% sure what his actual lagna (the sanskrit word for the rising sign) was, Taurus, or Aries…. But as said earlier, a man of such pronounced karmas should have a noticeable birth chart…. When I looked at the two charts, (one as Aries lagna, one as Taurus lagna) it was very clear that he must have been an Aries lagna.

To begin with, Aries is the sign of ideas, and the initial spark of existence. It is the sign of pioneers and heroic acts, as a Ram is born to climb anything in its path.  Aries is the sign of “active fire”, which is electricity.  (The other two fire signs are Leo, the fixed fire, and Sagittarius, the dual fire, which has both fixed and active qualities.  Aries is perhaps the most appropriate sign for pioneering fire or electricity at this fundamental symbolic level) Aries is a sign ruled by Mars, the fire element, and fire is the same as electricity and light in the context of elements.  Also, on the elemental level, fire has to do with intelligence, and cognition, and how well we think.  We know he had a lot of karma involving thinking, conceiving, light, electricity, and pioneering the applications of electricity, all of which are Mars related activities.  Also Rahu and Jupiter are in his first house as an Aries lagna, and Rahu makes one a pioneer in their field, as well as sometimes making one a bit of an outcast to society (sometimes because they are too ahead of their time).  So that is two marks for a pioneer as an Aries lagna.  These qualities strongly marked his path in life, along with a not so mature but still positive idealism (Jupiter with Rahu in okay dignity). Jupiter is also the lord of the fire sign of Sagittarius, another sign that can relate to electricity and lightning.  Jupiters placement here in Aries with Rahu also shows that his path was that of pioneering knowledge and wisdom more than a more classically physical Aries type of path.  Mars ruled people are not always soldiers or police officers.  Mars can also give one a career in surgery, or science, engineering, electricity, as well as mining and work dealing with the minerals of the Earth, to name a few examples.

If he were a Taurus lagna, his ruling planet would be Venus, which does have to do with making life more enjoyable for everyone, but does not have any strong fundamental association with fire, electricity, inventing, pioneering or being a scientist.  Also his Venus falls in the 3rd house (which does fit him in some ways) but is strongly starved by Saturn, Sun and Moon.  This means Venus is afflicted in every possible way in the context of Lajjitaadi Avasthas.  Such an afflicted benefic as the ruling planet in the 3rd would indicate very weak willpower and wanting to have things done for oneself too much and throughout life…. This is not the case, as he had an incredibly strong willpower.  It also does not fit his sharp and exacting personality as much as the Aries lagna.

Tesla’s celibacy- Nikola Tesla never married and was celibate.  As an Aries lagna, we can see that his ruling planet is Mars.  Mars is a planet that is said to be “Brahmachari”, meaning one who is celibate and does not marry, so as to fully pursue their goals and focus that they have in this lifetime.  (note: One could be brahmachari for many reasons, not just the traditional reason of expediting one’s spiritual progression.  A person could choose a celibate lifestyle just because they prefer the freedom it affords them to continue doing other things they are drawn to.)  This was the case with Nikola Tesla, as he was strongly sought after by women while he lived in the west, but never engaged in a single sexual relationship (according to him) and preferred to be celibate.  That is not very common.  We can see this shown in his chart by the placement of his ruling planet Mars.  Mars falls in Libra in the seventh house, and is in a temporary friend dignity because of Venus being four houses away.  Mars is with Ketu and the waxing Moon, a benefic and a friend to Mars.  Ketu can show where we have a strong karmic foundation in past lives, and here it shows that there is already a lot of karmic development in respect to relationships.  There is also  attachment (shown by the Moon here also) as well as frustrations (Mars) being shown.  So he is not going to find as much happiness in the area of relationships as a whole in this incarnation, due to having already exhausted those karmas in recent previous lives.  Rahu represents the area of life we are destined to develop in this incarnation.  In Tesla’s chart it is in the opposite sign, Aries, his first house, putting the spotlight on himself.  Rahu in Aries in the first house also speaks to a life of self development, and Tesla was an incredibly disciplined person.  Rahu is with Jupiter, showing that in this life he is wanting to develop faith in himself and all of his amazing ideas and noble endeavors, rather than focus on his enjoyment of life or relationships. But as is often times the case with those planets that are connected to Rahu, many of the Jupiterian goals he had were never realized, such as providing free energy to the entire world.  He did do many great deeds for the world as a whole, though.  Aries is also a sign that is fundamentally about being pure and virtuous, (Mars rules our Sattvam, our strength of character as well) which is why the most pure planet, the Sun, is exalted there.  Another interesting thing about his apparent celibacy is that he directly attributed it to his amazing intellectual abilities, which is a viewpoint also held by most Yogis.  As one example, he had the ability to visualize every invention in his mind down to the final stage.  Due to this uncanny skill, each of his inventions was said by his assistants to have been made correctly the first time, never needing to be revised, and never even leaving a blueprint behind!

Tesla_colorado_adjusted

“I do not think you can name many great inventions that have been made by married men.” -Nikola Tesla

Another unique thing about his ruling planet Mars being with Ketu and The Moon in the seventh is that this means Mars is “delighted” (mudita, in sanskrit) by the Moon.  The Moon is the ego mind, and when Mars is delighted by the Moon then one has a consciousness that can more easily act on the desires that are specific to it’s particular incarnation.  This also just empowers Mars overall, which is his ruling planet. The moon helping his lagna lord is showing that he has a lot of consciousness to work with.  We know this was the case with his extreme productivity, and his ability to only sleep 2 hours a night and an occasional nap.  Mars is also a planet that when strong, gives one the drive to stay awake all night working, to go hungry all day, or to do whatever it takes to get the job done.  Mars is described in Brihat Parashara Hora Shastra as “Cruel with red eyes…”  As Ernst Wilhelm has explained, we get red eyes when we have been up all night working and not sleeping, and this is the nature of mars, to keep pushing all through the night if he has to.

Life in the public eye- His lagna lord being in the seventh house and seventh sign is significant to his path in life for many reasons. To begin with, he was known to the public, and in the eye of the public. The seventh house is the house of the public as well as a house of foreign lands, and relationships. Having the ascendant lord in the seventh house in good dignity often causes one to live in foreign lands or to be involved in the public in some way.  Libra represents the western direction, where his ascendant lord falls, representing him in action in life.  He did have to travel west to America to leave his legacy for us all to enjoy.  He was well liked by the public and had many worthwhile relationships with prominent figures such as Mark Twain, Swami Vivekananda, and Rudyard Kipling.  Also it is interesting that his sexuality was known to the public, especially back in those days…..perhaps his ascendant lord being in the 7th house and 7th sign also had to do with his sexuality being known to the public.  The 7th house also has to do with our dynasty that we leave for the world and public at large.  In this way the 7th house has to do with the Saptamsha, the 7th divisional chart, which relates to children, the main dynasty that most people will leave for the world.  Jupiter is the key karaka for the Saptamsha, as this planet also relates to children and the dynasty that we leave for the world.  There is a strong double reinforcement in his chart on dealing with leaving some kind of legacy to the world.  One being the lagna lord in the 7th as previously mentioned.  The other being Rahu conjunct Jupiter on the ascendant, showing the focus of his life to be on some kind of dynasty, child, or creation to leave for the world.  His dynasty was much greater than one child. (Perhaps he knew this and it was also a reason for his celibacy, as he was very clairvoyant.) His child is every single light bulb, every single smartphone, every single i-pad or ebook.  His dynasty is this entire modern world we are living in.

 

to be continued in part 2….

 

*There is actually evidence he was not the first human to have laser technology, see the book Ancient Secrets of the Lost Ark by Laurence Gardner, which gives evidence that ancient Egyptians may have used rubies to create lasers from the Sun’s light, which possibly may explain how they were able to cut certain stone materials, but does not explain all of Egypt’s mysteries by any means.

Mercury and “Middling in the affairs of others”

The etymology of words can be very fascinating, especially in the astrological context.  A surprising amount of our old astrological knowledge has been forgotten in this current age; yet our very own English language still preserves clues to it, when we know the astrological language that birthed these words.  See my previous blog on astrological word origins for more on this.  One example I find fascinating is how in English speaking countries there is a negative saying about when someone is getting too curious about things that are not any of their business to be knowing about.  We say that person shouldnt be “middling in the affairs of others”.  The word middling means of medium or intermediate size, and so to be middling in the affairs of others is to be concerned with affairs of others that arent really important which often leads to unneeded gossip, or back biting, and does not usually bring about a productive result.  This term is never used when one is genuinely inquiring about how they can help someone in a serious way.  This term is used when one is more likely just curious and potentially seeking self-aggrandizement by comparing themselves to another.

The reason this is so interesting to me is because if there ever was a middle type of planet, it would be Mercury.  He is the most mixed and intermediate planet in many ways, being malefic when with malefic planets and benefic when close to benefic planets.   He rules, is exalted in, and is fallen in ONLY dual signs (which have both masculine and feminine qualities), showing how pronounced his dual nature naturally is.  Mercury rules one’s curiosity, and whether one has a healthy sense of curiosity, or whether they use this faculty to simply “middle in the affairs of others”.  And so a person with a weak Mercury may find themselves with a somewhat unhealthy sense of curiosity and can therefore get themselves into trouble with gossip or backbiting.

Let me elaborate on this point further.  Mercury is very much in the middle of things, and he likes the harmony that being in the middle can provide.  He doesnt like to choose a side, so much so that in a negative state mercury people are often stereotyped as “two-faced”, when they are usually just trying to maintain a good harmony with everyone they associate with, but may fail to really express how they truly feel to the person (which can cause problems down the line).

When it comes to our sense of taste, each planet rules one of the tastes, or “rasa” in sanskrit.  For example the moon rules the salty taste, and jupiter rules the sweet taste.  Mercury rules the “mixed” taste, or the savory taste as we often say, and what is referred to as “umami”.  This is what MSG (monosodium glutamate) is designed to replicate.  The taste can be created from the mixture of different chemicals and so is not easily created without being in the “middle” of a bunch of other chemicals, or tastes, we could say. Some examples of the umami, mixed taste of mercury would be the flavor that sauteed onions and garlic add to a dish, or the savory quality that tomatoes cause when cooked in dishes with other vegetables.  The quality that aged wines develop is said to be umami. ( See Ernst Wilhelm’s Graha Sutras book for the best treatment I have found on the tastes of the grahas.)

Another example of Mercury being in the middle is the genders of the grahas (graha is the sanskrit word for planet).  Sun, Mars and Jupiter are male grahas.  Venus and Moon are female grahas.  Saturn and Mercury are said to be neuter grahas.  Again we see Mercury not necessarily choosing a side but preferring the middle place.  Also, each planet is given an avatar that relates to that planet; such as the Sun is correlated to Prince Rama, the Moon to Krishna, etc.  Mercury is connected to the Buddha.  What did the Buddha eventually end up teaching after experiencing all paths?  The “middle way”….

Now we can see how this old phrase happens to match so well with what we know about the most “middle” planet, who also happens to rule over one’s sense of curiosity, be it healthy or unhealthy…. Another saying we have to express the same sentiment is that someone is being “too nosey”.  The nose is the organ of the sense of smell.  Can you guess which of the five senses mercury rules?

Holidays in November for the Dead

Its an interesting fact that during the 30 day period in which the Sun passes through the tropical sign of Scorpio (Oct 23rd-Nov 22nd), the United States, and many other nations celebrate five different holidays that deal with the main themes of Scorpio: death, and transformation.scorpion

These holidays are:

  • Halloween, originally known as Samhain
  • All Saints’ day
  • All Souls’ day
  • Remembrance day
  • Veterans day

Each of these holidays is centered around a major theme of the sign of Scorpio, and it really seems appropriate.  Why?  Because of all the different times of the year, this is the time when the Sun is passing through the sign of the scorpion, which only occurs once a year, like clockwork, during this 30 day interval.  And as said above, Scorpio is the sign of death and transformation, so there is no better month out of the year to assign holidays that honor and direct the public’s attention to the dead.  To fully appreciate this unique synchronicity, it is important to understand what the 8th sign of Scorpio deals with:

Scorpio has to do with the transformation of the soul, it is the part of the chart that deals with our longevity, vitality, and ability to fight for survival.  It can represent actual battles as well as the spiritual, inner battles that we all fight between our higher and lower natures.  It is the time of year right after Libra, when everything seemed peaceful and balanced, and the leaves were turning beautiful colors.  Now in Scorpio it is getting colder and darker each day more quickly than before, and the leaves are all gone or rapidly falling. Everything is turning brown, beginning to hibernate, or dying.  The theme is either turning within to transform and survive through winter, or die.  Scorpio is the stage that has to do with the lack of nourishment in life, and the symbolic scorpion is meant to turn its energy, or “water” within to derive nourishment, hence it is a Brahmin sign (oriented towards enlightenment) and can set the stage for great spiritual development.  This depends, however, on the nature of the planetary karmas that are involved.  Difficult Scorpio related karmas show that one is not going to be able to find inner nourishment easily, and will likely turn to unhealthy ways of filling that void.  This can lead to vices of all kinds. Here we see the origins of the negative associations of the sign coming in: Sex, abusive tendencies, addictions, breaking the law, drama, wild breaks and changes, and battles of all kinds.

If you are new to astrology, don’t expect to understand this most mysterious sign at first glance, it takes time and contemplation.  For now just consider that the Sun (The soul of all) passing through the sign of death, the departed, and the transformations related to that, would naturally suggest that this is the best month of the year to honor the dead.

Halloween/Samhain –  This was originally a Gaelic festival that marked the end of the harvest season and the beginning of winter, or the darker half of the Solar year.  It is widely believed to go back to Pagan times before the Christian era.  This was the time when the veils between the spiritual and material worlds were thought to be thinnest, and the fairies and spirits were able to most freely intermingle with the Earth realm at this time.  Offerings would be left out for these spirits to honor them, as well as to ensure some degree of safety through the coming winter.  According to some scholars, it was only after the Church condemned this whole festival that the fairies and spirits began to slowly take on a more sinister or wicked aspect.  Now the “offerings” have been boiled down to kids in scary costumes asking for candy… If we choose to see it in its original context, however, it correlates to Vedic Astrology, as Scorpio is one of the three water signs (the brahmin signs). These signs are the most naturally oriented towards spirituality, and are the most psychically sensitive, with Scorpio being the one that is always considered most vulnerable to negative energies, or other worldly factors such as spirits, etc.  {Note: To explain why this is would require a post in itself, but feel free to leave a comment if that is desired.}

All Saints’ Day - This is the day after Halloween, on November 1st.  It is set aside to commemorate all the Saints known or unknown in the world.  It is also refered to as All Hallows’ Day, or Hallowmas by Shakespeare.  It is believed by many that this holiday was instituted to have a sort of Christian counter-holiday to the Pagan Samhain festivals at this time, and this is logical.  Again we can easily see the connection to Scorpio, as Scorpio is a Brahmin Sign.  Brahmins are the priests or saints of the ancient Indian caste system.  This relates to the spiritual battles touched upon earlier.  A Saint is really just someone who has won the spiritual battle that we all must fight eventually, between our higher and lower nature.  In some respects, All Saints’ Day could be seen as a holiday that is honoring all the victorious Scorpios of the past, known or unknown.

All Souls’ Day/Day of the Dead – This is the day after All Saints’ Day, and is a day of prayer for the dead and especially one’s relatives.  This is like All Saints’ Day, but more universal in that it is about honoring all Souls everywhere.  Still a very similar Scorpio theme of death, and prayer, but with an added attention to family.  The family connection makes sense as Mars produces our Siblings and Mother which is the majority of the family.  Another interesting fact is that the 3 day period of October 31st- November 2nd is also a time in Mexico when a similar holiday is celebrated, The Day of the Dead.

Veterans Day- This is an official United States holiday on November 11th that honors people who have served in the US armed forces.  Mars is the Lord of scorpio, and is the planet of war, and soldiers, and battles, as mentioned previously.  Of course fallen heroes will naturally relate to the negative sign of Mars, and again we see a holiday that correlates as the Sun passes through Scorpio.  Here we see a similar theme except that we are honoring those who have fought actual physical battles for the noble cause of defending their nation and freedom.

Remembrance Day- This is held on the same day as Veterans Day, November 11th, but is more international as it is observed by all Commonwealth of Nations states and it honors all those members of the armed forces who have died in the line of duty.  There is a slight difference in that sense, as Veteran’s Day does not distinguish between honoring those who have served and those who have died.  Still we see the same themes repeating that should be familiar by now.

Isnt it interesting that these five Holidays which focus on death and transformation happen to each fall in the one sign that is most appropriate?  One naturally wonders if it is all just coincidental, because if astrological thought is correct then we should naturally feel these ways at these times… Or if it was intentionally arranged by Astrologers of Royal Families?  Without evidence it would be hard to say.  There is, however, no disputing the connection of these five holidays to the Tropical sign of Scorpio.