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

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

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

Celebrating NatarAjA, the Dancing ShivA on ArdrA Full Moon January 1st 2018

As I write this, it is 5 deg F (-15 deg C) on the sunny morning of January 1st 2018, in the New York metro area. This new-year’s day will end with the Moon visible in full grandeur tonight at 9:15 pm (all New York time). The Earth is almost at the closest point to the Sun, in its elliptical orbit today at exactly 12:34 am, January 3rd 2018. The Moon will be at its closest in its orbit to the Earth today at exactly 4:48 pm, January 1st, 2018. Between the two will we get the Super Moon effect making for the Wolf Moon.

In my tradition of Jyotisha, and also more so especially in the Tamil tradition, the Full Moon that arises in ArdrA nakshatra celebrates the arising of the NatarAjA, the Dancing ShivA. (If you are not familiar with my Jyotisha tradition, please check out https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nakshatra for a beginner’s orientation)

The significance of celebrating the Full Moon in ArdrA in Jyotisha is independent of calendars imposed and followed in the mundane world (for e.g., the European Gregorian calendar in use since 1582).

According to Jyotisha:

  • When the Sun begins transiting from midnight of December 21st (at 6:40 degrees in Gemini – the Sun transits opposite in Sagittarius at the same degree), it begins its apparent ‘movement’ North from the tropic of Capricorn.

 

  • When the ArdrA nakshatra is seen in the sky, we know the northward turn of the Sun has begun.

 

  • Since the ArdrA nakshatra spans Gemini from 6:40 degrees to 20 degrees, the Sun lights up ArdrA from December 22nd to January 4th.

 

  • The Full Moon that occurs during its transit in these degrees between December 22nd and January 4th is celebrated for the nritya of NatarAjA, the Dance of Shiva.

From a narrow modernist science perspective (not given to metaphorical contemplation) one may imagine the nritya of NatarAjA, the Dance of Shiva as NataRajA, as the movement of the entire range of energies that manifest the cosmos. Within the tradition, we see and experience the Dance of NatarAjA as manifesting creation, protection, destruction, release and embodiment.

The dance posture of NatarAjA is the focus of meditation on this Full Moon, with left leg lifted and suppressing ignorant ever transient tendencies (“this is mine”, “I did this” which in the globalized westernized culture and science these tendencies are bundled into the word ‘ego’) that arise in the embodiment under his right feet. The right hand of NatarAjA is in the posture of Abhaya Hasta, blessing meditators with protection in their meditation. The accomplished meditator visualizes the entire dance of the cosmos in the stillness of this posture.

 

 

 

In Tamil Nadu, this entire period is celebrated with exuberance of song and dance. Here is a link to just one small sliver of the spirit that exudes in the Tamil country during this season.