We should not use astrology to prevent us from acting and moving forward with our lives but we can use astrological forecast to see the puppet masters strings that are tugging at our emotions and psychology to get beyond. If we understand what is happening in the stars, it may allow us to get beyond it and not get gripped and to transcend is influence on bad decisions. My columns try to give us that perspective but we should not hide our head in the ground like an ostrich as probably 60% of the year there is something challenging happening in the stars but there are always movements of grace. Even this week with the difficult Solar Eclipse and square of Mars to Ketu, we had the Saraswati yoga with Jupiter, Venus and Mercury, the 3 benefics all together and that continues into Sept. 8th.
Sometimes when things get rough, we get undisciplined and skip our spiritual practices. This is like taking our coat off in the middle of a hard freeze in winter. It gets more challenging. Be more disciplined with diet, bad habits, yoga, exercise and meditation when the planetary weather is rough. The value of spiritual practice during difficult times is that it should empower you with good inner strength to move forward and blow away the smoke of planets and make good decisions.. I find that 95% of my mental and emotional noise disappears with spiritual practice and I am able to move forward as a result
Some people are afraid to go out of the house because of bad transits. . Transits are only 20% of forecasting. If you are running a bad cycle and have the same bad transit, then it is a tornado warning and you do not schedule a picnic, but otherwise we have to live our lives and act and go through our challenges. For example, the upcoming Saturn/Rahu square affecting Sept and October with extreme anxiety and work alcoholism will impact people in Saturn and Rahu periods more and impact Capricorn and Aquarius rising most but may have minor affects for other people. Our forecasts are general but their impact on your specific life has to be diagnosed and properly forecast by a professional astrologer. Our intent is not to frighten you to bunker down but to just know to have an umbrella handy if it is going to rain. Be practical always and integrate spirituality with real and practical life. Famous Arab saying: ” Pray to Allah but tie up your camel.”
A friend of mine had a useful spiritual reminder about difficult transits. “Challeging times are where spiritual muscles are stretched and worked out, and these opportunities are not to be avoided if one seeks advancement. Moksha isn’t a pretty process, it involves letting go and can be painful.” We need not fear karmic lessons. That is why we are here. One of Yogananda’s most advanced disciples, Gyanamata, wrote beautifully “I have come to measure spiritual advancement, not alone by the light that surrounds one when he meditates or by the visions he has of saints, but by what he is able to endure in the hard, cold light of day.
We can make difficult transits easier by helping others, donating to charity, doing special vedic ceremonies and doing spiritual practice but some of it just requires getting through it and learning our life lessons so that we can become free. Go forth with courage.
So do your spiritual practices, act, face your challenges and know that God’s grace is supporting you to get through to a higher real and to the light. Do not use astrology to by-pass your karmic destiny or avoid your challenges. It is not meant to be used in that way. You have nothing to fear and are intimately taken care of by the Divine always.
(Special thanks to my colleague Sam Geppi for inspiring deeper thoughts around these issues. We disagree in places but he spurred some deeper thinking.)