Waking Up to Our Patterns: Spiritual Insights into our Karma and Desires

Waking Up to Our Patterns

Last year, I was in a study group on Yoga Vashishta which is an ancient text between an enlightened Rishi and Lord Rama at a young age it is rather profound, and I wanted to share some thoughts from it and my spiritual teacher.

First of all, we get easily get caught up in the illusion of our desires for more money, more beauty, the perfect relationship and attachment to our families, and our quest for fame and recognition. All of these are part of the fleeting relative world and eventually lead to disillusionment. How stuck can we get with Rahu-like cravings and how stuck in the illusion can we stay?

Can we take our wealth with us when we die? Is not the world now showing us how quickly things can change? During the Gulf war, rich businessmen were suddenly fighting over scraps of bread in the desert as they fled their war-torn country.

Our body is always changing, and we all succumb to the decay of the body as Saturn takes over in old age. Yet how much money is poured into enhancing our looks in hopes that if we think we are beautiful enough we may attract the perfect partner and get over our poor self-esteem? Many feel that their life will be complete if they can only find their soul mate and have the ideal relationship but even when it happens, give it 1 year and you will be complaining to your friends about your partner’s imperfections.

Rahu and the Sun want recognition and more fame and status but when the next eclipse comes, we can easily get thrown off our throne if we have not learned that the true King archetype is here to serve his people and not get try to accumulate for himself and his family. Political leaders all around the world have this disease and corruption is rampant.Many mothers give up everything for their children’s love and their children grow up and are too busy to even call and say hello and they become devastated. 

There is nothing wrong with these desires and we go through lifetimes, thinking our fulfillment will come at their completion but in the end, Saturn takes over in late life and we suddenly realize the futility of all of this. We delude ourselves by thinking we will be happy if we achieve these desires, but it rarely happens. The fame of the movie stars is quickly destroyed by the press as they are never left alone or in peace with their sexual scandals or divorces. Just look at Brad Pitt and Jennifer Anniston.

Lord Rama had a gifted life of wealth and family and good looks and fame and achievement but at an early age, he realized the futility of all of this and wanted more.

The first step on the path is Self-Inquiry which is what we do with astrology to see our patterns and flaws and if you are awake to wanting to know your illusions and desires then that is a great start. But it also takes Self-Control. If we know we get trapped by our desires for more sex or money or fame and we continue to follow these Rahu cravings, we continue to delude ourselves and suffer. It takes action and Self-effort to change our patterns. Thinking about them is not enough. We have to do something about them and change our habits. It always reminds me of my favorite movie Ground Hog Day (1993) with Bill Murray. Do we repeat the same patterns and mistakes and suffer, or do we change our life through action? By the end of the movie, Bill Murray moves beyond escape and addiction becomes a great artist and ice sculptor, and pianist and saves people regularly in his daily routine, and then wins the girl.

Are we willing to take action to make our lives different? I am always inspired by the Nike slogan: “Just do it.” It does take Mars and move beyond our laziness and if we stay stuck, we are just going to suffer or come back again with the same desires and the same illusions. How much longer do you want to stay stuck in self-delusion? When will maturity come and the real search for Truth? Wake-up. Yes, enjoy but remember that we are here for a deeper purpose to find God.

I will leave you with a beautiful quote from one of the great spiritual teachers from my spiritual tradition, Swami Brahmanada Saraswati Jagaguru Bhavan Shankaracharya of Jyoti Math:

 

“To get a human body is a rare thing. Make full use of it. There are four million kinds of lives that a soul can gather. After that, one gets a chance to be human. To get a human body, therefore, one should not waste the chance. If you don’t value this, then you will be left with nothing in hand and you will weep in the end.

 Because you are human, God has given you the power to think and decide good and bad. Therefore, you should never consider yourself a weak or fallen creature. Whatever may have happened up to now may be because you didn’t know, but now be careful…after getting human, if you don’t reach God, then you have sold a diamond for the price of spinach.”

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