Where There Are Many More Losers, Very Few Winners

Corporate Pyramid by Photo by Meriç Dağlı on Unsplash 180613

The Pyramid Game: Very Few Winners (Photo by Meriç Dağlı on Unsplash)

By Jayant Kalawar

Most of us are driven to act by desires much of the time. And by fears some of the time. Some mix of the two most of the time. Sometimes we act out of habit. We have an inertia about changing how we act. Even when the driving desires and fears are no longer in us. Today I am going to talk about some consequences of acting in situations when desires do not give expected results.

Many of us have the desire to acquire and maintain a certain social status. That social status requires income, assets, acquiring of objects such as houses and cars and jewelry and clothes and college degrees. Many ands can be added. Career is one way of getting social status in the corporate (and remembers it’s only a little over a hundred years old!). The career structure is a pyramid. So people compete fiercely to get to the next level on the pyramid. It’s like playing musical chairs.

When someone else gets ahead in the pyramid, some of us feel that it was unfair. They did not get a fair shake. Those who got ahead were from the ‘in-group’. The others were favored. And so on. Factually it is likely that all that is true. When the desire to get ahead in the pyramid gets doused, many of us feel frustrated. Most of us reach this stage somewhere in their 40s and 50s. After all it is a pyramid. Only a few people can get to the top. We begin to see a few of our class mates and colleagues soar. And you know from way back that you are better than them. The frustration sometimes begins to boil over to resentment.

Getting resentful about not being able to get ahead on the career and social status pyramid sets the stage for some not very sensible actions. Such actions, born out of frustration, have consequences.

These not very sensible actions may show up as objections and snide remarks at meetings. Negative water-cooler talk is another vent. It may show up in a more passive aggressive way – in the form of internal corporate survey responses for example. We may assume those survey responses are indeed confidential and not shared. Most internal corporate surveys may be assumed to be used as barometers of where an individual is in terms of being a team player. So survey responses used for venting may have negative consequences. Perceptions in HR and senior management may turn negative. A venting team member cannot be relied upon as much.

So what can we do? Life is not fair. We learned that in kindergarten. We keep forgetting it. The odds are stacked against us, all of us, as we go up each rung in the pyramid. Those of us who are lucky, and much of it may be just luck, to get to the next rung, begin to think we are really good and better than those who did not make it there. We begin to think life is fair, so we made it there! Then when we cannot make it to the next higher rung, we are suddenly shocked that life is not fair.

So what can we do? The pyramid game is a finite game. There are many many more losers and very few winners in that game. Switch to playing the infinite game. The cosmos is infinite. We live and act in a microcosm of that cosmos. The microcosm has everything that the cosmos has. Remember the first verse of the Isha Upanishad:

Purnam-adah Purnam-idam, PurnAt Purna-mudachyate,

Purnasya Purnam-Adaya, PurnamevA Vashishyate

The switch from playing the finite pyramid game to the infinite game takes a cognitive shift within ourselves. Deconstruction out of the pyramid game to resonating with the cosmos.

So that we may begin hear the birds sing and flowers bloom, and notice the waxing and waning of the Moon.

Live to the rhythms of the universal clock within us, to sync with the cosmic cycles all around us.

And yes, it is very hard work to get there. But some of us may feel it will indeed work to get us there.

Are you one of those few?

(c) 21BanyanTree and Jayant Kalawar

Devi’s Magic: Do you want to Play?

Devi's Magic Photo by Madhu Shesharam on Unsplash 180526

Magic: Sun shining through in my heart (Photo of Antelope Canyon by Madhu Shesharam on Unsplash)

The first few seconds

Every morning

Floating in spandanA

Pulsations

 

And then

Insistent clamor rising

You are different from the cosmos

You are man

You are father

You are debtor

 

Things to do

Dollar to earn

Scripts to act out

Atomized

 

In modernity

Bouncing around in anxieties

Chasing goals passionately

Round and Round

Breathlessly

 

Clouds of despair

Thunder of anger

Lightning bolts of hurt

Tears of sorrow

Winds Lashing

 

I chant my DurgA MantrA

Poof

Clouds are gone

Sun shines through

In my heart

Re-connecting

 

Magic

In the infinite game

Do you want to play?!

Mars in Turbulent Fields: Astro-Weather Watch / Warning May 2nd to November 5th 2018

Mars Passing Through Turbulence Derek Thompson Unsplash 180518

Mars in Turbulent Fields (Photo by Derek Thomson on Unsplash)

Many of you have already noticed natural events, whether freaky storms, earth tremors or volcanic activity, since May 2nd. There is more to come, as Mars moves through turbulent fields between now and early November 2018, both in natural and human generated events with potentially negative impacts.

Here are the date ranges to watch out for such occurrences and within that some potential peak dates, when you may experience unexpected / sudden events.

Date ranges to be cautious and observe:

May 31st to June 15th (with May 31st to June 8th being peak dates for potential sudden / unexpected events to commence).

July 10th to July 28th (chances of sudden / unexpected events: July 10th to July 19th)

September 21st to September 30th (peak dates: September 21st to September 26th).

Besides the natural and mass human generated events, which we will all observe, each of us may experience events in specific areas of our personal and family lives depending on ascendant birth sign (using sidereal zodiac). Here are some pointers (if you want empower yourself to surf these waves, there are ways of doing it):

Aries: There may be some events relating to career and social status that impact your health, physically and emotionally.

Taurus: There is potential for some sudden events for your parents, advanced studies and good fortune in general.

Gemini: Some potential for loss of income and connections with elder siblings and mentors is seen.

Cancer: Potential for loss in career and social status may impact your spouse / partner.

Leo: You may find yourself in debt or disputes with your parents (or those in authority), obstacles in advanced studies and during some long distance travels.

Virgo: Expect some obstacles and endings in your emotional relationships and creative pursuits.

Libra: There may be some endings in personal and business partnerships.

Scorpio: Some disputes and debt situations may be seen with younger siblings, colleagues and any small business interests you may have.

Sagittarius: Some losses in your emotional relationships and creative pursuits may impact general sense of well-being for yourself and your family.

Capricorn: You may experience some personal impact due to sudden change in your financial asset, home or mother related situations.

Aquarius: You may experience some setbacks relating to small business situations, younger siblings and communication clarity.

Pisces: There may be changes in family situation that impact income and relationship with elder siblings and mentors.

Two Birds on the Tree of Life

Two Birds on the Tree of Life - allan godfrey 180429

Two Birds on the Tree of Life (Photo by Alan Godfrey on Unsplash)

By Jayant Kalawar

Many of you may know about the metaphor used in the Upanishads. Of the two birds on the tree of life.

It is a way of deconstructing ourselves, to become aware of how we function in this world.

We are the two birds. The tree of life is the cosmos we perch on.

One of the birds is the eater bird. The other is the observer bird.

The eater bird has desires and it has fears to match its desires. It desires to eat the fruits it sees on the cosmic tree. It starts by eating what is nearest to it. Then its appetite increases and it hops to other branches. Higher branches, with apparently big juicy fruit. We start by only wanting to eat, be just about warm and to sleep. Then we want to have fun. Then we want to have social status: more food, more house, more car, more degrees, more fashion statements, more show-off. Many of us want to have children. We want them to maintain and increase our social status. We do this every day and night. We are either nibbling or grasping off the cosmic tree or we are plotting and planning how to eat more and more.

The eater bird starts triggering its fears as soon as it starts desiring. What if I do not get to the fruit. What if some other eater bird grabs the fruit before I can eat it all. What if there is no more fruit on the branch I am on. What if I cannot jump to the higher branches. What if other eater birds knock me off this branch. What if they do not let me get on to another branch. What if. What if.

Those are the fears we carry with us all the time. Free floating anxieties. Many times those fears come true. It is an uncertain world out there. We, as eater birds, have very little control. We may deceive ourselves to believe that we are in control of some part of some fruit. We know we are not in control. And it reinforces our anxieties.

Many of us hear inner voices sagely telling us to stick to what we know. In our comfort zones. Those voices are our fears talking to us. They are telling us how to manage our fears down and make the most of the fruits in hand. We give it fancy names. Managing risks down. Maximizing returns. We feel good that we are sophisticated and modern. We are eater birds on the cosmic tree. Eating fruit we do not own. On which we have very little control on.

And then hopping along with the eater bird part is the observer bird. Always there, besides us. If only we were to look. It is that part of us which has an understanding of the nature of the cosmos and our part in it. When we connect and immerse ourselves in the observer bird part of us, we may be able to calm down our desires. As our desires become minimal, so do our fears. When our fears become minimal, we can sleep better. We are more energized with less.

There are primal desires that never go away. We manifest in this physical body. It comes with the desire to survive. And the other desire most of us come with is the one to procreate. So while we may be able to minimize material and social desires at a personal level, these primal desires of the eater bird need a culture that helps manage these primal desires to a minimal level, without being violent with each other. That is where the personal become social.

The cultural fabric seems to be collapsing in slow motion around us, as science and technology of the material becomes our master, ruling how we live and connect with each other under the guise of Reason. We seem to be slowly but surely becoming even more disconnected from the observer bird part of us.

The challenge is not just at a personal level. It is even more so at a social level. And it is global. Start with a contemplation: what will the world be like to really act out that we desire minimally and flourish as observers of the cosmos. Step back, from time to time, from being an eater bird, and be the part that is naturally you: the quiet observer.

Have a great week.

© 21BanyanTree.com and Jayant Kalawar

Energy Boost from the Sun in Aries: April 14th to May 15th 2018

Sun in Aries 2018 Photo by Tanishq Tiwari on Unsplash

Glow in the High Energy of Sun in Aries (Photo by Tanishq Tiwari on Unsplash)

By Jayant Kalawar

When the Sun transits through Aries between mid-April and mid-May, most of us sense a boost of energy in different areas of life, depending on your ascendant birth sign (using sidereal, not tropical zodiac). If you are in touch with your energy flows through your inner work, this is something you will sense. You will be able to channel this burst of energy appropriately to heal yourself and others around you.

This year though, Mercury is still hanging around in Pisces (where it has been going back and forth since early March) and will be there until May 9th. Mercury in Pisces makes for generally less than effective communications for most of us. This is exacerbated for Aries (may cause some losses, increased expenses), Libra (mis-communications may lead to disputes) and Leo (may cause challenges in career and social status). Those situations may likely be resolved after May 9th.

Also, there will be one other major movement in the next few weeks. Mars will be moving into Capricorn on May 3rd and will be hanging its hat there until November 6th. In Capricorn Mars is energized and is generally positive for most signs, provided we channel its energies appropriately (so Leo ascendants may sense great energy flows which make them competitive at work and help win in disputes. Make sure to manage it with the long run in mind, not just the short run wins i.e. do not burn bridges for immediate applause, bring people along with you). This year Mars will be heading into rather rough astro weather in the June-July time frame, with the Moon’s orbit disturbing the Sun-Earth gravitational field (yes the July solar and lunar eclipses are just one measure of this disturbance). Mars energies will be weakened considerably. Many of us are likely to feel the stress of this sudden drop in energy levels in different ways. Those with Gemini, Leo and Aquarius ascendants need to be especially aware: prioritize and focus to conserve energies, to get through positively in the June-July period. I may write more about this next month.

To end on a positive note, currently, between April 13th to 20th, there is a Venus-Jupiter alignment going on, which is giving positive energies to many of us. May be a nice time to enjoy art and culture (Venus) and a general sense of well-being, blessed by expansive energies of Jupiter.

(c) Jayant Kalawar and 21BanyanTree.com

The 2018 Piscean Month – March 14th to April 13th – is a mixed bag

Pisces by Jeremy Thomas Unsplash 180317

Do you see Pisces in the sky? (Photo by Jeremy Thomas on Unsplash)

I am late posting my ruminations for the Piscean month of March 14th to April 13th when the Sun is seen to transit in zodiac of Pisces on the sky map. I was busy with coaching and writing. Also, this is mixed bag of planetary transits, so I cannot take short cuts, have to speak to each sign and talk to the positives and challenges. So that took some time.

Before I dive in, did you read about the solar magnetic storm that was to pass by Earth from September 14th to 18th? Most of you know that there are regular space weather bulletins issued by the US National Weather Service.

Overall, in the Piscean month this year, Gemini, Cancer, Libra, Sagittarius, and Aquarius are relatively more positive. Aries, Taurus, Leo, Virgo, Scorpio, Capricorn and Pisces may have somewhat more challenges, in varying degrees.

The mixed bag comes from three events we notice in the sky:

First is Mercury’s transit in Pisces through this month, giving us more emotional and less analytical / logical vibrations. At the same time Venus is transiting Pisces until March 25th. Venus adds positively to the emotional energies. So the next week or so is great time to bond with your mother, for example. And, only coincidentally, many of us are celebrating Chaitra Navratri during this time, connecting with the Mother, LalitAmbA, through puja, chanting and meditation. It is a meditative time (see my meditative-contemplative suggestion at the end of the post).

Second is that Mercury, Venus and Sun energies reach us through the disturbed nodal axis zone created by the last solar and lunar eclipses in February 2018. That disturbed zone is still quite potent and will dissipate only after the first week of April. This causes confusions, which add to the already emotionally charged month. This will be experienced more by some signs than others and I point that out below.

Third, is the transit of Mars close to Saturn, reaching the same exact longitude on April 2nd-3rd 2018. The effect of this Mars-Saturn conjunction will begin experienced from March 23rd to April 10th, with peak on April 2nd-3rd. This is a complex experience, and each of us will observe it from different angles in our lives. I give broad directional flavor below by signs, but that is really hand waving – it requires you to get a sense of your birth chart and the role that Saturn and Mars play there, to better appreciate this conjunction.

Ok, here we go.

Aries: You may experience some temporary losses and separations in different areas of your life. On the positive side, you may get some gains in your passive income e.g. investment income, pensions, rents.

Taurus: This may turn out to be stressful month on the professional front, as well as health, work and home areas. Step back, conserve energy, focus on what is required and do it well. Sometimes stress makes you come out a champion, when managed well.

Gemini: Overall a positive month, when fortune shines and blessings flow. Some temporary stress is seen in home, children and creative areas. Be careful with your communication and how you present yourself.

Cancer: A very mixed month. Many positive uplifting things happening in home, creativity and general sense of well-being, punctuated by some passing sudden confusions. Between March 23rd and April 9th, you may see some obstructions to your career goals. Slow down, step back and then actively work towards overcoming the obstacles by collaborating with your partner(s) and seeking help from people you trust.

Leo: Fortune is likely to shine on work you do this month with your personal and business partners. On the other hand, expect and manage obstructions in career matters, communication issues and health.

Virgo: On the positive side, a general sense of well-being is pervasive. You may get to be quite emotional in your communication – slow-down in your speech and writing and try to veer to being thoughtful and silent. Hard work and showing the excellence of your work will be more beneficial than talking about it. Your physical and emotional health may be under stress especially between March 23rd and April 9th. Be careful about operating mechanical machinery, including cars, as you may be prone to injury during this time.

Libra: On the positive side, you may work closely with your partner(s) in the areas of creative projects, romance and children. Health and work place matters are likely to be stressed. The usual slow down rule applies.

Scorpio: There is potential for positive results this month, when you connect creativity, children and romance in your career area, with thoughtful communication. There may be some sudden confusions which you may have to be on the watch for. There may be some passing disputes and disturbances in home matters.

Sagittarius: A generally positive month, with some passing disturbances in passive income, career matters and luck. Connecting creativity, children and romance to new initiatives may lead to success in this period.

Capricorn: Career matters likely to move in a positive direction, with some hiccups since fortune may not favor at this time. You may experience some passing obstructions in your communications and in interactions with younger siblings, friends and colleagues. You may continue to experience a sense of loss this month (this feeling may pervade until early 2020), exacerbated due to loss in home related matters.

Aquarius: An otherwise positive month may be marred by some recurring confusions arising out of communications and also your interactions with personal and business partners. Be thoughtful. Taking a leadership position with younger friends and colleagues to drive entrepreneurial initiatives likely to lead to success now.

Pisces: The continuing challenges in the career area are likely to show up as a general free floating sense of malaise this month. This is an emotionally challenging month, which may be reflected in physical health too. Communications and overall relationship with partner(s) are likely to be under strain.

Let’s turn this month of mixed possibilities into one of abundance of the Devi’s blessings this Chaitra Navratri through meditative-dance!

Desirous Energy: Imagining Untold Stories, Jumping Off To Fly

Inhaling Energy from Embers Jumping Off To Fly 180304

Inhaling Energy from Embers, Manifesting Space in Time (Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash)

By Jayant Kalawar

Embedded

In dense vibration

Secure

 

A spark

Of desirous energy

Rising

Shape So Beautiful.

 

Standing on the edge

Of vastness

Manifesting space

In time.

 

Imagining untold stories

Filled with rapturous desires

Inhaling energy

From embers.

 

Jumping off to

Fly

Glide

Roll

Dance.

 

So free in

Imagined space

Floating in the embrace

Of soft amnesia.

 

Enveloped

In flow of Time

No moorings

A faint

Memory of

Umbilical love

Calling.

 

A confused thrashing

Dim awareness

What?

Who?

 

Lost

Seeking

The way back.

© 21BanyanTree and Jayant Kalawar

Cosmic Musical Symphony: Venus and Mercury move on to Pisces March 2nd 2018

Venus and Mercury Playing Musical Chairs March 2018

Venus and Mercury In Cosmic Musical Symphony (Photo by Jonatan Pie on Unsplash)

Venus and Mercury will move to Pisces on March 2nd. Venus will be seen in Pisces until March 25th. Mercury will be seen in Pisces for much longer: until May 8th.

The effect of this movement is likely to be relatively positive in March for Gemini, Cancer, Virgo, Sagittarius and Capricorn.

Those with the following ascendants may wish to be a little more attentive in certain areas in March:

Aries: Some potential for disputes and / or health issue with your personal and business partners.

Taurus: Some impact may be seen on your creativity, children and romantic endeavors.

Leo: Potential impact on career, interactions with younger colleagues, siblings, new initiatives and personal partners.

Libra: Potential for stress and health issues. May be appropriate time for quiet long meditative retreat.

Scorpio: Some impact on interactions with mentors and elder siblings and some losses on investment income.

Aquarius: There is some potential for changes / endings if you have plans for long distance travel or advanced studies, or attending spiritual programs – new options will open up. Be attentive to possibility of impact on relationships with personal partners.

Pisces: Potential for some endings with some personal and business partners. Open new ways of doing things.

The Ebb and Flow of the Aquarian Month 2018: February 13th to March 14th

Waxing Moon At Sunrise, Signals end of Maha Shiva Ratri. In 2018 it was on February 14th.

Waxing crescent Moon rising at Dawn signals end of Maha Shiva Ratri. In 2018 it was on February 14th (Photo by Sadman Sakib on Unsplash).

At the current point in the Earth’s precession (which is approximately a 26,000 year cycle), the Aquarian month occurs between February 13th to March 14th : the Sun appears to be in the Aquarian zodiac during this time. The Indian Almanac adjusts to account for this slow but steady precession, and accordingly adjusts the sky maps. These coincide with the sky maps drawn by NASA. Vedic Astrology uses these sky maps to assess impact of the configuration of gravitational fields implied in such maps, at any particular time, on individuals.

The Sun appears to transit from one zodiac sign to another as the Earth rotates around the Sun (every 12 months), in the Sun’s gravitational field. The Sun also appears to pull planets which are close to it: Mercury (revolves around the Sun in 88 Earth days), Venus[1] (224 Earth days) into the zodiac zone it is transiting in. So, for example, Mercury will be seen in Aquarius between February 15th and March 2nd, while Venus will be seen in Aquarius between February 6th and March 1st in 2018.

Meanwhile during the 2018 Aquarian month, Jupiter (16 years to  orbit the Sun) continues to appear in Libra (until mid-October 2018), Saturn (29 year orbit) in Sagittarius (until late January 2020) and the eclipse generating nodal axis (19 year orbit) in Cancer-Capricorn (until late March 2019). Mars (22.5 month orbit) will be seen in Scorpio until March 7th, when it moves to Sagittarius.

Some Predictions for the Aquarian Month

The period between February 13th and March 14th will be generally positive for most ascendants. The ones who would need to be on the alert and take the opportunity to grow:

Cancer: There may be a combination of obstructions and chances for endings in this short period. Be patient and persistent to get over the obstructions. It is like being on an obstacle course, use it as practice for the longer term. You may also get a sense of some things that you may want to end, and that generally means time to explore opening new doors.

Virgo: A mix of conflicts, disturbances and health issues may arise. It may present an opportunity to learn how to respond best to the conflicting situations you find yourself in, even as you are feeling low energy or a bit unwell. Slowing down and yet being agile helps at these times to focus on what is happening.

Pisces: There is a potential for losses, if you find yourself in conflicting situations. This month is an opportunity to be low profile and inward facing. Spend more time on chanting, meditation and solitary walks, contemplative diary writing.

Astro Weather Watch

There is a small Astro squall likely from February 16th to 23rd, as Mars goes through a disturbed force field still present, and created around the nodal axis (I had indicated earlier here that this disturbance would be in place from mid-January to mid-March 2018, along the Cancer-Capricorn axis). Gemini, Libra and Aries may wish to keep a watch during the short period from Feb 16th to 23rd:

Aries: There may be a sense of mental tension and confusion during this short period, potentially giving rise to impulsive harmful actions. Exercise, meditate, sleep and try not to act in a way that you may regret in the longer run.

Gemini: Mentors may not be available when you feel you need support. Also, there may be some investment related losses. Slow down, be patient.

Sagittarius: Expect distance from children, creative pursuits and romance. Be patient, be available, especially to help children.

Do you know the Vedic Astrology ascendant in your birth chart? For a free birth chart, write to jayantkalawar@gmail.com with birth details (date, time, location).

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

[1] Venus is the odd planet in the Solar system: the only one that rotates clockwise, around its own axis (all other planets, including Earth rotate anti-clockwise). Venus rotates very slowly – its takes 243 days to rotate around its own axis, which is greater than the 224 days it takes to revolve around the Sun.

A Tiny Spark of Desirous Energy: A Contemplation

Tiny Spark of Desirous Energy 180208

Contemplating Desire (Photo by Wil Stewart on Unsplash)

By Jayant Kalawar

Embedded in dense vibration

A tiny spark of desirous energy

Seeking a stage to act.

 

Visualizing space-time stage

Many scripts playing

In many theaters

So many plays to choose from.

 

Choice made, birth taken

Name given

Script taught

Role rehearsed.

 

Acting out desirous energy

Immersed in role

On space-time stage.

 

New desires layered on

Dense vibration forgotten

Pleasures of desires

Fears of loss.

 

Music stops, role ends

Exit space-time stage

Grieving the loss

Many desires remaining.

 

Back to dense vibration

A tiny spark of desirous energy arising

Seeking a stage to act…

(c) 21BanyanTree and Jayant Kalawar

Sigh of Relief: Venus Transited into Aquarius February 6th 2018

Venus Crossed into Aquarius February 6th 2018 - Can Be Seen in low in the Evening Sky

Venus Transited into Aquarius February 6th 2018 – Can be seen in the evening sky (Photo by Aleks Dahlberg on Unsplash)

by Jayant Kalawar

You may have read about Astro Weather happening between January 27th and February 10th.

The first part of the weather happened between January 27th and 31st 2018: when Venus’s connection to Earth went through the nodal agitation zone, which I explained in the linked article.

Many of you may have experienced this disturbance in your personal lives during the last week of January 2018. Spouses and partners getting very upset. Not being able to enjoy aesthetics or luxuries.  Generally a time when expression of romance seems to be behind the clouds.

In the news in late January 2018, FLOTUS was shown to be unhappy with POTUS. Did not show up in Davos. Travelled to SOTU address separately and apparently did not applaud as heartily as others. That may be a more public indication of Venus being disturbed. Privately, many of us, especially the sensitive among us, would have likely experienced some sort of Venus related disturbance in that week.

Today (February 6th), Venus moved into Aquarius, far away from the disturbed zone. Most of us may expect relatively better vibes in your spousal / partner interactions (except for Cancer, Virgo and Pisces ascendants, for whom Venus energy may give some low level stress over next 3 weeks, but easily manageable).

Between February 1st and February 5th, Earth’s connection with the Sun went through the nodal agitation zone. Leadership / authority roles may likely be challenged more than usual. Many of us play leadership / authority roles in some areas of life. Parents, for example, have this role when it comes to children. Many of us find ourselves being supervisors of a team, if not big bosses, at work. Expect to get surprising push backs in those authoritative / leadership roles that you take on in your lives, however limited the roles may be.

Mecury-Earth connection will go through the nodal agitation zone between February 7th and 10th. In general, expect misunderstandings due to miscommunications and re-check your spreadsheet work during these four days. Those of you blessed with having Gemini, Leo and Aquarius ascendants may see passing but sudden disturbance in home / house matters (Gemini), career /professional matters (Leo) and general obstructions in whatever they are attempting to achieve (Aquarius).

Want to know more about this? Check out our Services page and contact us.

(c)21BanyanTree and Jayant Kalawar

Delicious Desire: Making Sense of the ‘Nutella Riots’ in France

Hazelnut Nutella Riots

Delicious Desire (Source: Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash)

On the morning of January 26th 2018, BBC News reported rioting after a chain of supermarkets in France announced a deep discount on Nutella:

A discount on Nutella has led to violent scenes in a chain of French supermarkets, as shoppers jostled to grab a bargain on the sweet spread.Intermarché supermarkets offered a 70% discount on Nutella, bringing the price down from €4.50 (£3.90) to €1.40.But police were called when people began fighting and pushing one another.”They are like animals. A woman had her hair pulled, an elderly lady took a box on her head, another had a bloody hand,” one customer told French media.

It was surprising to read of this behavior in a country that is extolled worldwide for its superior cuisine, wines and desserts, not to mention a culture that is based on acting out the principles of civilized, secular science. The video, embedded in the news, shows healthy, well dressed and not starving individuals of Northern European extraction, (not newly arrived unwashed immigrants), who came to blows over the price of a processed food like Nutella.

In this instance, we can rule out desire arising out of biological hunger as a driver. Also, an attachment to tradition and heritage as a dynamic, was not in play here. Addiction to sugar and chocolate? Perhaps, especially when it is deeply discounted by 70%.   This may well be the trope for the 21st century consumer, programmed as we are by advertising and marketing memes to look for discounts and consume brand name processed foods, that make us acquire desires in the current socio-cultural milieu.

Desires and Fears

At any moment, our actions are driven by a combination of our personal desires and fears that are constantly interacting with the fears and desires of others around us.  In the microcosm, as we saw in the Nutella ‘riots’, desires play out as acquiring a commercially processed food at a low cost, on one hand, with the fear of losing out on the deep discount, on the other,

Then, there is the ladder of fall, when apparently civilized adult humans lose their capacity for judgement.   Modern biology tells us that humans use their forebrain to make judgements, and the capacity to make sound judgements kicks in fully by the age of 26. If this is true and the Nutella ‘rioters’ were, from the video, apparently much older, what went askew with their judgement capacity?

The Downward Spiral

My ancient tradition tells me that when desires are not met, we lose the capacity of judgement. The ladder of fall is described in these following steps:

  • When our energies attach themselves to an object that identifies our well-being, the desire arises to acquire, control and consume that object [Nutella].
  • When these desires are not met as expected (more on expectations in a later blog post), it leads to frustration [not getting our hands on the deeply discounted Nutella].
  • Frustration [of desire being unfulfilled] leads to anger.
  • Anger leads to loss of judgement [apparent loss of access to forebrain capability].
  • Loss of judgement leads to violence. This was in ample evidence in the video in the linked article.

What we see, in the relatively less hurtful and harmful microcosm of the ‘Nutella riots’, can happen to any of us individually, and amplified into group dynamics: desires not met to our expectations, rising frustration not resolved, mounting anger looking for action, culminating in indiscriminate violence and hurt.

Does this feel familiar to you, in your immediate surroundings and in the country you are living in, as well?

(Some of you may have recognized that I am referencing the Bhagavad Gita, chapter 2, verses 62-63, when I reference the downward spiral from my ancient traditions above).

 

 

KulAmrutarasikA: the 90th MantrA of the LalitAsahasranAmA

sri-chakra-image-from-121018

Sri Chakra representation drawn by Jayant Kalawar

By Jayant Kalawar

In the 22 mantras, spanning the 90th through 111, the LalitA SahasranAmA (those unfamiliar, please read this overview link) describes how LalitAmbA, Mother LalitA plays within us, as She rises from the MooldhArA to the SahasrArA.

The 90th mantra describes her at the top in the Sahasrara:

kuḷāmṛtaika rasikā

This mantra occurs in the 36th verse of the LalitA SahasranAmA, which is:

mūlamantrātmikā, mūlakūṭa traya kaḷebarā |

kuḷāmṛtaika rasikā, kuḷasaṅketa pālinī || 36 ||

(Listen)

The vibration of the mantra connect us to LalitAmbA, LalitA-Mother (AmbA). Listen to the link above and chant the mantra. You are calling out to the Devi LalitA, the Mother (Devi pronounced it as They-vi, for those unfamiliar with SamskrutA). And the Mother responds to your call.

Many of us though would like to know the ‘meaning’ of the mantra. That helps too, as it helps to create a visualization. How to chant a particular mantra with what focus and visualization is best as a one-on-one conversation. The vibration of the mantra along with the visualization can and does begin to change the vibrational structure of the individual. It is something to be learned when one is ready to begin connecting with the more subtle aspects of oneself, after gradually stepping away from the attachments of sense based objects.

Just to give a high level sense of the verse:

Rasika is the enjoyer. LalitAmbA is playing and enjoying. What is She enjoying?

Amrut: that which is opposite of Mrut, death. Non-Death. LalitAmba enjoys the state of Non-Death when She reaches the SahasrArA, where she meets and dances with ShivA.

Shiva is always sitting in meditation bathing in peaceful moonlight at the Sahasrara. Awaiting his beloved LalitAmbA to join Him.

LalitAmbA works through a series of obstacles to rise from the MooldhArA to meet her beloved ShivA in SahasrArA.

She awakens Him out of his meditative state in the Sahasrara. They begin their celestial dance.

And the Amrut, Non-Death, flows in the subtle plane.

In the physical plane it flows out of Kula: the body.

Hence, the practitioner tastes the sweetness when the Devi Shakti reaches the SahasrArA. It  flows as KulAmrut.

For LalitAmbA is indeed the RasikA, the enjoyer, of KulAmrut.  Hence KulAmrutaikarasikA.

The reader may have noticed, in the description above, how gender apparently seems to play a role. The feminine principle, LalitA rises to meet the male principle, Shiva.

Where does this take place? In each of our individual subtle bodies. So in that sense, each one of us has something that we may categorize as feminine and also masculine.

It is the meeting of these two principles within each of us culminates in the subtle celestial dance, which produces the A-Mruta, the Non-Death state.

It is also interesting to note that the 1000 mantras of LalitA are roughly divided, in terms of gender ascription, into one third feminine gender nouns, one third masculine gender nouns and the rest as neuter gender nouns.

Many of you may be interested to know more about how both the feminine and masculine principles play a role in each of us. I have written more about that here.

 

Connecting Your ChakrAs to the Thousand MantrAs

First let us chant the shAnti mantrA, which many of us are familiar with:

purnam adah, purnam idam purnat purnam udachyate; purnasya purnam adaya purnam evavasisyate (Brihadaranyaka Upansidhad 5.1.1, which is part of the Shatapatha Brahmana, which is part of the Shukla Yajur Veda)

This verse is repeated in Isha Upanishad (part of Shukla Yajur Veda) as the first verse.

There are various interpretations of this verse. I leave it to the reader to do a web search to get these range of interpretations.

This is my interpretation: what is in the entire cosmos is fully embedded in each micro element, and any composite set of micro elements that we perceive and interact with. I take this as an axiom. I call it the Fullness axiom. Rest is my proposition, arising from this axiom, as applied to specific word descriptions in the Lalita SahasranAmA. The proposition suggests actionable knowledge for you. To help you understand your own nature and have better sense of how to navigate through your world of experiences. Hence what follows may be of interest to you.

The Proposition

Our human body is just such a composite of micro elements. Applying the Fullness axiom, in principle the human body contains all that is in the entire cosmos. Let us view the human body as being made of multiple layers of chemical components moving about in space over time. These layers of chemical components interact with each other through neural vibrations.

The systematic descriptions of the world based on the Veda (known as ShastrAs) speak about three passages which connect the perineum area of the body to the top of the skull. Neural vibrations travel on these major highways. There are six interchanges on these highways, from which local networks lead to different parts of the human body. These six interchanges are called ChakrAs. The Lalita SahasranAmA (LS) specifically speaks of two speed bumps which slow down and serve as check points at each of the interchanges. Some of the interchanges have three check points. Getting past these check points requires the vibrations to have certain energy levels. Proper functioning of these check points and having the required vibrational energy levels are required to ensure smooth flow of neural vibrations throughout the human body. Blockages at these check points can lead to a dysfunctional human body.

In each of the articles linked below (I will add sporadically as I write and post on a mantra, as and when inspired by LalitAmbA), I take up one of 22 mantras, from the 1,000 mantras, in the LS. The 22 mantras span the 90th to the 111th mantra in the LS and describe how LalitAmbA manifests (and what results from such manifestation) as her energy travels the path from the MooldhArA to the SahasrArA.

The 90th MantrA: Kulamrutaikarasika is described at this link:

https://21banyantree.com/2017/02/24/kulamrutarasika-the-90th-mantra-of-the-lalitasahasranama/

Mapping Your Life With Jyotisha: A Tool To Help Your Material and Spiritual Quest

Mapping Your Life with Jyotisha

If you are reading this post, I will assume you have read my post on how Jyotisha can assess your karmic strengths and weaknesses, obtained a 21B report detailing your karmic strengths and weaknesses, and had your first interactive 21B coaching session on Skype. Now, you are on your way to becoming stronger and more independent, using the 21B Jyotisha tool kit.

Today, I share how Jyotisha can draw a life map for you, over a potential 120-year life span, with a time-line of the broad combination of karmic tendencies you were born with that will be in the driver’s seat during different times of your life. The karmic map is based on your birth chart but this is not set in stone; your efforts, including connecting with the Divya Shaktis in this life, have the potential to change the birth-based karmic map.

An overview of how this can be accomplished is shared here too. For on-going 21B coaching sessions, we use your 21B 120-Year Karmic Map[1] that is plotted into manageable 5 year intervals.  We can then use it to drill deeper to discover what to expect in the next one year, how to prepare yourself to make the most of it and move closer to what you are striving for, in an ethical and balanced manner.

21B 120-Year Life Map

21B Coaching Services creates your personal 120-Year Life Karmic Map based on your birth chart as the basis for our interactive services.  Your potential 120 year life span is partitioned into 9 different energy areas. In each of these areas specific karmic tendencies have the opportunity to work themselves out. These 9 areas represent:

  1. a) energies from each of the 7 celestial bodies that channel through you (which is described in your 21B Strengths and Weaknesses Report, if you have obtained it), and
  2. b) energies of Rahu (the deceiving energy) and Ketu (destroyer of material attachments).

The energy patterns with correspondent strengths and weaknesses of the celestial bodies are mapped in your birth chart and show the areas of your life you will gain rewards [and be enjoyable for you], and where you will face challenges. The karmic map shows specific calendar time intervals, with the longest act of 20 years and the shortest of 6 years.

The 120-year life span is a 9 Act play. The stage for each Act follows a different pattern for different individuals. A stage can be your home, neighborhood, your place of work, a distant university, and so on. The theme that will be played out in each Act is also outlined. In this way, the Karmic map shows what you could anticipate and prepare for major changes that occur, as you transition from one Act to another, from one stage setting to another. For example, a scene of 3-year duration may be about career. The script, during this phase could be about home-based (stage) career (theme). If the Karmic Map indicates this change, you can plan ahead of this anticipated transition to make it work for you – as in planning to raise a family and while having a career during this period.

An example of a Karmic Map, based on a well-known figure, is provided here for reference.[Karmic map and Karmic Strength Scale is copyrighted to 21B Coaching Services.]

Illustrative Example: Summary of 21B 120 Year Life Map

120-year-life-map-diagram-160919

The 21B 120-Year Life Map starts with your birth. It winds its way through various stages for each of the 9 Acts over a maximum of 120 year life span. It tells a story of what to expect and when, including the year and month. It also reveals how strongly you are equipped to successfully play in a particular Act in your life.  This assessment is provided in your 21B Karmic Strengths and Weaknesses report.This helps you become aware of the strengths you will need or have to succeed: whether it is:  analytical or creative intelligence,, courage, patience, passion or perseverance, or your ability to save or negotiate,, nurture and nourish. In this way, you can begin to strengthen the skills, attitudes, depth of assets you will need to succeed well ahead of the start of the Act.

In the illustrative example above, Act 2 is played out between 1971 and 1978. This individual experienced a very rough period between the ages of 11 and 17 years. His parents, if they had his 21B Life Map, could potentially have managed these years differently. They could have given him a more consistent nourishing and nurturing stage to live out his teen years. . Instead, the map shows it was left to him to figure things out for himself, in an unstable home environment.  Until his 36th year, the Karmic Map shows that this individual would have had lots of ups and downs with some lucky breaks. 21B mapping and coaching could have helped him navigate these years, to become even more productive and happier long before his 36th year.

The 21B 120-Year Life Map outlines the set of karmic tendencies you are born with, some strong and some not as strong.  When you become aware of your karmic tendencies, you can work on changing them and bring them into balance with each other. You can also become aware of what situations you will likely face year by year. And you can play like a champion in each of those situations. Champions usually work with a coach, at whatever game they are playing. This is what the 21B life-coaching aims to do:  to make our clients become champions of their life, for both material and spiritual goals they may be striving for.

Five Year Detailed Karmic Map

Like most of us, I am practical and down to earth. Sure, it’s great to have the 9 Acts of a potential 120-year life span laid out, but wouldn’t it be better to know how the next 5 years will play out for us so that we have more control over changes we’d need to make – for both material and spiritual quest? Moreover, can we make changes to an Act or even the stages and scripts?

Let me explain how I use Jyotisha in my coaching services  After I create your personal 21B Karmic Life Map, it is further broken down into Five Year Maps which detail sub-periods within one Act. The longest sub-period within an Act is about 3 years, and the shortest is about 6 months. During this time, you could experience a transition from one Act to another. Think of the sub-periods as multiple scenes within one act of the play. Each scene brings out its own sub-theme, within the over-arching theme of a particular Act. There are 9 scenes which make up each Act and each is played out for a specific sub-period.

With Jyotisha, you can have your life map set up in acts, scenes, even down to a script outline, year by year (I will write about the 21B Twelve Month Script Report in my next post). How you traverse the map, what you strive for and what directions you take, and how you act on the stage is all up to you. The more  you become aware of these the better you are as a master of improv in your own life’s play! And your 21B coach can help make become a champion on your life’s stage, in your material and spiritual quest.

[1] 21B 120-Year Karmic Life Map is a copyright of First Windsor Group LLC dba 21BanyanTree.com.

Illustrative Report of Your Karmic Strengths and Weaknesses

Use Jyotisha To Become Aware of Your Strengths and Weaknesses

Download (pdf) to review a sample of what your Karmic Strengths and Weaknesses Report will look like:

illustrative-example-confidential-report-on-your-strengths-and-areas-for-improvement-2016

To order your personalized Karmic Strengths and Weaknesses Report , write to Jayant Kalawar at 21BanyanTree@gmail.com.

Not sure yet?

If you do not know your ascendant per Jyotish (Indian Astrology), please send your birth details (date, time, location) to 21banyantree@gmail.com .

A free birth chart will be emailed to you along with a free initial assessment of your strengths and weaknesses, as a pdf attachment, in a few days.

______________________________________

A few of you may be entirely new to Indian Astrology. The following may help:

Indian Astrology is known as Jyotisha (Joh-thish-uh): that which shows us Light. It is a tradition rooted in the 10,000 year old living tradition based on the Vedas. This living tradition of Jyotisha continues to develop and deepen with new heuristics continually added through rigorous trial and testing among expert practitioners[1]. Jyotisha divides an individual’s life into specific segments over a 120-year lifetime (our life-span has actually decreased since ancient times!). Many of you may already know that Jyotisha has many powerful features, which require detailed computations of planetary positions, aspects, conjunctions and eclipse nodes and so on. It divides an individual’s life into 9 specific segments of different period lengths over a potential 120 year life span. It then predicts what karmic experiences will be acted out during each of those 9 life segments (called major periods) and 9 sub-periods within each of the longer 9 main periods.

The Jyotisha birth chart represents the karmic tendencies each of us are born with, based on past lifetimes of experiences.

We anticipate and predict what karmic experiences will occur during these major life periods, as well as the sub-periods within those periods.

Each major life period detailed in our horoscope shines light on different parts of our true nature that we are born with.

So the major periods and sub-periods are presented to us in the detailed readings, that follow the initial reading. But our daily mental, physical, and spiritual actions within those periods is what we have the capacity not only to manage—but expand–for our own personal freedom.

The Jyotisha tradition does not stop at a reading. It is a practice that helps you acquire tools for empowerment.

This is where our individual agency, creative potential, and empowerment comes into play. I’m passionate about helping you energize and re-discover creative potential and empowerment despite any obstacles in lived experiences – or even what a birth chart may indicate.

Our agency is deepened through concentration and meditative work. The stronger the sense of agency, the better the chances of easily expiating past karmas and not picking up new ones.

Cleansing our karmas is manifested through embodied connection with the Light Energies, called Divya Shaktis (Div-yuh Shuk-thees).

Indian traditions have devised, through extensive testing, specific combinations of breath work, mantra chanting, setting up altars and meditative visualizations to evoke these Divya Shaktis within us (and that is where Chakra work comes becomes relevant). These methods are prescribed based on your chart and experience.

I can give pointers to which specific Divya Shaktis can be called in a specific phase of your life, to fortify your journey, if you are interested.

Since you have read up to this point, I have a few questions for you:

What interests you in having an jyotisha reading?

Do you have any specific questions? I encourage you to ask 3-5 questions to keep in your heart and mind. This will also help me in your reading and our conversation.

One of the challenges in completing a birth chart is that it speaks to what karmic tendencies you were born with. It does not speak to what has already happened in our life, since your birth, which would have changed your karmic energy configuration.

That takes multiple interactive sessions, covering the major periods you have already experienced[2]. This is something I also offer through my practice, 21BanyanTree.com, both over Skype and in-person. We can then develop a Life Map for your material and spiritual quest.

It would be a pleasure to do an initial reading, which can assess your strengths and weaknesses, based on your birth chart. Please let me know what specific questions you have in mind, which you want to get a peek into through this birth chart reading using Jyotisha, the Indian approach to Astrology (write to me at 21Banyantree@gmail.com ).

[1] I follow the Systems Approach To Vedic Astrology, as propounded by Professor V.K. Choudhry (www.yournetastrologer.com). Continual testing of hypothesis and developing heuristics takes place in forums such as SATVA and SAMVA yahoo groups, under the guidance of Professor Choudhry. He is the founder and chairman of both the Systems Institute of Hindu Astrology (SIHA) and International Institute of Predictive Astrology (IIPA).

[2] Please note that no information of any kind provided in any form by 21BanyanTree or by Jayant (Jay) Kalawar can be considered as legal, financial, medical or mental health advice of any kind. Please consult with a licensed professional in these matters.