Martin Luther King & Today's Democracy Dilemma
Gandhi's Philosophy And Vedic Astrology
An Indian mentor recently forwarded me an essay by Niranjan Ramakrishnan* refocusing Gandhi's teachings forward to today's democratic dilemma. The title alone, The Comprehensive Pursuit of Liberty. What's So Great About Gandhi Anyway? is provocative.
complaining about our political situation, dismissed it by saying, "I would rather live somewhere else." Where else, I thought, could he go to escape the global mess, Bali?
Confronting harmful societal karmas, aided by astrology's foreknowledge of benefic and malefic planetary energies, is a singularly effective way to improve the human condition. This topic was discussed from another viewpoint, that of spiritual citizenship, in the July 4, 2003 Commentary- Of Philosophy, Politics & Astrology.
Mahatma Gandhi is universally known for his non-violent resistance
winning British colonial India its freedom, but less memorable today is
that Martin Luther King later applied this same philosophy to gain equality
for African-Americans. It is worthwhile recalling the 1960's civil
rights movement demonstrated Gandhi's philosophies can be applied across
cultures; they are universal knowledge, like the
Vedas from which they issue. Further, the US civil rights movement
reveals how our courageous society has so quickly been reduced to a
fear-based one -- the democratic dilemma.
Mars And Liberty
This brings us to the point of this Forecast, to see the universal knowledge of liberty through Vedic Eyes in today's democracy dilemma.
The previous Forecast, Mars! Mars! And We Ain't Talkin Candy Bars, described how and why the planet of War is particularly ferocious and dominant now, most notable in Mars' inspired tiger attacks and the populist anger that elected Arnold Schwarzenegger. The Forecast summed up the Mars planetary energy as, "Schwarzeneggers's compelling carnivorous appeal to an angry electorate in California." and stated, "...it is obvious the entire country is temporarily spellbound by Mars' aggressive grasp." What was not discussed was positive and affirmative action to deal with these challenges, of how to use Mars' energy constructively, not destructively. The Mars Forecast did, however, list both Mars' higher and lower significations, and therein is the key.
In the fall of 2000, I taught an introductory Vedic Astrology class about the 9 planets, using these contrasting higher/lower qualities to dynamically illustrate their complex symbolism. Below are some for Mars:
In Mars! Mars! And We Ain't Talkin Candy Bars, this fall's tiger attacks were compared with Mars' energy in the summer of 2001 that precipitated a rash of shark attacks. Not discussed was that immediately following Mars' transit out of watery Scorpio, it's pent-up energy was unleashed in the 9-11 attack in fiery Sagittarius; and immediately thereafter, our government used Mars' lower manifestations to enslave the populace in chronic fear, cowardice, lethargy and dependence. Read again the above listing of Gandhi's views on liberty and contrast that with our democracy dilemma, of how our liberty has been comprom- ised. Consider, then, what we can do now to harness Mars' higher qualities at this time of similarly height- ened Mars energy.
First, merely by recognizing Mars can be either courage or fear, we can free ourselves of enslaving Mars influences. Second, apply Gandhi's philosophy with Mars'-inspired leadership, courage, heroic deeds, disci- pline, logic, dedication, initiative and independence. These are, after all, not so foreign concepts, especially since they are fundamental to the founding of our democracy and were so recently applied in the civil rights movement to further enhance liberty.
Below is an introductory statement about Mars used in my class. It
describes how Mars relates to spirituality and suggests by inference
that spiritual leadership would, and should, lead the effort to restore liberty.
Astrology And Ayurveda
Vedic Astrology relates to Ayurveda, the ancient medicine of the Hindus, and from this various remedies to strengthen or elevate weak or afflicted planets are given. Some simple and easy Ayurvedic lifestyle tech- niques can be very helpful in dampening Mars' lower qualities and enhancing its higher ones. Mars' color is bright red, signifying anger. This color should be limited or reduced in ones environment -- clothing, furn- ishings, vehicles... Mars is the planet of agriculturalists, suggesting gardening calms Mars' seething. As Mars is also sports and landed property, athletics are good but hikes in nature are even better. Mars is pitta (fiery), opposite the emotional Moon's kappa (watery) nature, suggesting being around water is calming. Mars is also, of course, sex, and this activity, if done with love, also elevates Mars.
Mars is discipline and coordination, making it the planet of hatha yoga, for Mars is used to move into and hold yoga positions, joining the body with the soul. Meditation requires Mars' discipline and dedication, making this an unexpected positive use of its energy. It should also be noted that Mars is a sprinter, not a marathon runner, which means when Mars does fire us up to quick action, we should use its discipline and logic to restrain dangerous impulse and maintain a measured pace. And when Mars does exhaust us, which is anecdotally obvious (my 3 editors are all too whipped to do their volunteer job), make sure to get plenty of rest. Finally, Mars as is basically a violent planet, avoid dangerous situations, as I should have last week in wrenching my knee and two days ago in being singed by a flaring gas barbeque. (Well, it could have been much worse!)
To summarize how we may stimulate Mars' desirable and qualities, needed to regain our liberty, be aware of our fears, apply Gandhi's teachings and use these Ayurvedic techniques.
Timing For Liberty
Vedic Astrology's famous predictive quality includes exacting timing of trends and events. This section and the next apply this unique characteristic to help the people plan their liberating activism. It should be noted, however, that these predictions are based upon planetary energies which are not so potent as to yield a fixed karma to the forecasted results. Further, free will does indeed exist (as initiative karma), which stip- ulates that the outcome, this hopeful one or the opposite of continued violent and selfish autocracy, is the choice of individuals and groups.
Mars will continue to bring aggression and discord to the world until it transits out of Aquarius on Dec- ember 6, by which time, liberty in America can be regained. Recall that President Bush's disgrace is proceeding on the schedule predicted in June 15, 2003 Forecast, Future Chronicle - Bush's Downfall. Part 2. The Summer And Fall In Disgrace. Gandhi brought the ideas, and Vedic Astrology offers the trend and timing to bring those ideas to fruition, to remember our former courage and apply it again, for liberty.
Liberty For Iraq
Aggressive Mars will next enter Pisces on December 7, from which it will aspect Saturn in Gemini. In turn, restrictive Saturn will aspect Mars, linking these planets together. The resulting heightened frustrating tensions will continue until the end of this transit on January 24. However, as Saturn restricts Mars' energy, this combination's frustrations will be largely withheld, like building pressure inside the volcano. Yet, from December 7 to January 24, philosophical (abstract thinking) Jupiter will be released from Mars' glare, giving an opportunity to further pursue liberty, this time with regard to Iraq and the rest of our international relationships.
Below are 3 more of Gandhi's teachings from the essay, lessons for the US in dealing with our occu- pation of Iraq. After regaining our domestic liberty, we must then apply this type of clear and objective thinking to our occupation of Iraq.
There are some beacons of hope, recently lit, that indicate the people are beginning to figure out the issues and how to resolve them. Though few of us have the public influence of a nationally recognized leader or journalist, it is worthwhile nothing in today's New York Times, that Nicholas Kristoff's editorial echoes Gandhi by stating, "The greatest foreign policy mistake the U.S. has made over the last half-century has been its obliviousness to nationalism. Today as well, plenty of ordinary Iraqis would prefer to be misruled by Iraqis than ruled by Americans." http://www.nytimes.com/2003/10/15/opinion/15KRIS.html
Timing is important here, for from January 25 until March 11, transit Mars will cross Aries, where poisonous Rahu (an eclipse point and head of a dragon in Hindu mythology) is currently transiting. This combination brings intense desire expressing itself in bitter antagonism, meanness, spite and violent abuse, and religious Jupiter's aspect adds a vengeful god(s) to the recipe for violent disaster. In other words, an unstable and frustrated occupied Iraq will be the most likely location for Jihad to begin, for the long supp- ressed volcano to erupt. While the close conjunction of Mars and Rahu, from February 22nd to the 25th, will be the most volatile, the entire transit will stimulate Mars to release its pent up energy. It is vitally important, therefore, that Iraq regain its liberty before January 25, to prevent an Iraq conflagration that would tend to spread through the vital Mideast.
This Forecast, and generally most others, focuses on relating planetary karmas to identify and predict specific situations or circumstances. Many celestial winds flow over time, and at the same time, yielding variable and complex results which may or may not cause patterns or be immediately seen as forming a patterned or sequential activity. Therefore, while each Forecast is substantive, its information should not be seen as excluding or relating to other events or trends. For example, the recent Technological Breakthrough Forecast predicts such an advance at about the same time as the possibility of Jihad in Iraq, and even though the planetary dispositions analyzed are the same, these predicted events are not connected, nor relate in any way. On the other hand, if and as Bush is disgraced by the predicted November 9 lunar eclipse, this will pave the way for restoring liberty at home and abroad.
Copyright 1999-2004 Doug Riemer