Much has been written on the age of Aquarius and the passing from one age to another with many moments of declaration claiming events in the celestial sky have indicated the demarcation of this grandiose event. For over 2000 years this golden age has been fantasied and prophesied about. Over the last 20 years we have witnessed many beautiful and spectacular events in the sky and stars some noticed and enamoured by the enlightenment movement (Dec. 2012) while others go unnoticed. One such event was the celestial alignment that appeared in the sky over September 23rd 2017. Many speculate it referenced a Biblical New Testament prophesy found in the book of Revelation and there was much wonder as to the meaning of this event but what was interesting was there was very little work to decipher the text in correspondence to Astro-theology.
Astro-theology : the study of the astronomical origins of religion; how gods, goddesses, and demons are personifications of astronomical phenomena such as lunar eclipses, planetary alignments, and apparent interactions of planetary bodies with stars.
As we approach the Lunar Eclipse in Leo on January 31st 2018, I am brought back to the events that transpired in astronomy and astrology at the time of the Leo solar eclipse of August 2017 and the celestial appearance in the sky with the constellation Virgo at the September Equinox. It is time once again to ponder deeper mysteries and revelations. To begin my inquiry I returned to the text written in the book of Revelation chapter 12 and began to ask some questions... primarily questions of Astro-theology and soon answers came with hidden mysteries connected to the Tarot, the coming age of Aquarius and the constellation of Cygnus (The Swan) where we will see a new star appear in 2022.
Revelation Chapter 12 : 1-6
Last year on September 23 2017, "a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars." Revelation 12 : 1 appeared in the sky along with other interesting alignments that arrived a month before hand which included two new moons in Leo, a lunar eclipse in Aquarius, a solar eclipse in Leo with Regulus the king star at 0°degrees Virgo (astrology). Much excitement ensued as many of us felt this was a sign of the new age of Aquarius being birthed and the passing of the baton of rulership to the divine feminine. Here is what the alignment looked like in the sky;
What was so fascinating of this astronomical event was that Jupiter (Zeus) the planet of the king remained in the womb of Virgo (the Virgin) for nine months as it followed it's retrograde cycle in 2017... making her the fulfilment of a woman ready to give birth, "Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth." Revelation 12 : 2. Along with this alignment was her crown of twelve stars with the constellation of Leo and the planets of Venus, Mars, Mercury and the king star Regulus (now queen star as it has moved into Virgo). This alignment took place three full days after the new moon in Virgo and on the day after the Fall Equinox. Now to decode this there is so much that we need to understand so please bare with me as this is just the beginning of the investigation. First off who is Virgo?
Virgo is the virgin goddess Astraea, which means "star-maiden", she was the last of the immortals to remain on earth after the last golden age. She walked among humanity sharing wisdom and light until the day came that man fashioned weapons to kill each other when she could bare it no longer. Zeus placed her in the heavens to watch over the earth until the day comes when we'll no longer kill each other. It is prophesied that Astraea will return to usher in the next Golden Age. She serves mankind as the sacred mother, the star-maiden and celestial virgin of innocence and purity. She is the one that places the seed of life in the soul that it may awaken to itself and realize it's true nature. In each of us the virgin birth occurs when we become awakened; once the light has been sparked in our hearts. -Alchemy 101 Sprit Energy Medicine
The mythology of the Virgin and or Sacred Mother is embedded around the world equated with Isis, Ishtar, Asherah, Sophia, Pleroma, Divine Wisdom, Mother of God, Black Madonna... The Virgin... Virgo. There are five cards in the Major Arcana of the Tarot that personify her and point to many hidden mysteries. Alchemy students will recognize this number of five for its is the number of growth and the number of (womb)man.
Now the symbolism and teachings of these cards requires much more time and individual focus than we have here, in this moment we will be put our attention on the STRENGTH, THE STAR and THE WORLD cards. The STRENGTH card is ruled by the constellation of Leo; THE STAR card by the constellation of Aquarius and THE WORLD CARD the planet Saturn. Let's begin with defining the constellations of Leo and Aquarius.
Leo is named after the Nemean Lion who was a powerful beast with impenetrable fur and claws stronger than any sword. The Lion was known to have ruled over a fertile land that man dare not touch. The Nemean Lion was also known for luring and capturing maidens to which men would venture to it's cave to rescue their kin only to be devoured by the Lion, none escaped until Hercules. In the first labour of Hercules he was directed to slay the beast realizing it could not be killed by conventional means he wrestled the lion to death. The Lion represents the right to rule over own lives by toiling and conquering our labours to acquire our soul through the power of the heart. It takes great courage and strength to face our own beast this is a love of labour. It can only be achieved through the heart and the fire of the Red Lion and by the patience and wisdom of the sacred virgin; love. -Alchemy 101 Spirit Energy Medicine
Leo is the constellation of the conquer honouring the kingship of Hercules who was the prophesied child of Zeus born to rule the people but who's birthright was usurped because of Hera (Zeus's jealous wife). Eventually through Twelve Labours Hercules was immortalized and was given the honour of the gods and the hand of Hebe the goddess of eternal youth (daughter of Hera and Zeus). In the sky the constellation of the Virgin, Astraea has made Leo her crown for she has subdued the lion through the power of innocence, purity, wisdom and love; her labour of love for the people. This is why Astraea appears in the STRENGTH card of Leo and not in THE HERMIT card of Virgo. This also points to an interesting thing for she appears in the opposing sign Aquarius THE STAR card. For Hebe was the original cup bearer of the gods before Ganymede. So what of the constellation Aquarius?
So here we have THE STAR card of the Tarot to which is attributed the constellation Aquarius and on this card we do not see Ganymede but instead we see the return of the Star Maiden pouring the nectar of the gods, the fountain of youth on the ground and waters of the earth. This leads to the prophesied return of the goddess Astraea the virgin goddess of innocence purity and wisdom. But how does THE WORLD card fit in and why does it's correspond to the planet Saturn? In the old world the reign of Saturn was considered to be the past golden age where, "men of their own accord, without threat of punishment, without laws, maintained good faith and did what was right... The earth itself, without compulsion, untouched by the hoe, unfurrowed by any share, produced all things spontaneously... It was a season of everlasting spring." - Ovid 6th book Metamorphoses. Interestingly three months after the celestial apparition of the Virgin giving birth to Jupiter in the sky Saturn moved into it's ruling home of Capricorn on the night of December the 19th 2017. In the Tarot THE WORLD card represents the completion of the alchemical "work" or in this case the completion of an age and the arrival of the goddess; the divine feminine or in Christian eschatology the holy church the bride of Christ. It is ruled by Saturn out of respect for the previous golden age and the one that is to come.
So what of this past summer's eclipses and the coming eclipse season? Well eclipses represent the divine alchemical marriage... the bridal chamber where the moon and the sun come into perfect balance where things from the past are being eclipsed out and new cycles are being eclipsed in... then we had this spectacular celestial apparition in the sky with Virgo giving birth to the king planet Jupiter along with Mars and Venus (the two great lovers) meeting in the sky and the alchemical magician; the god of communication Mercury to bare witness sending a message to pay attention! Regulus the king star has moved into Virgo and has become the queen star; the return of our Star Maiden. The baton has been passed to the divine feminine and the age of Aquarius is being birthed... YES! Not so much... the paragraph in the Revelation story goes on to say that these events described will continue on for three and half years as the promised child (or age) to rule has been swept up to heaven and the alchemical process begins it's work on the planet and it's people! Enter the Dragon...
What happens next in our story is, "3) another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. 4) His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born. 5) She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was caught up to God and His throne." Revelations 12 : 3-5. Below the constellation of Virgo low in the heavens sits the Hydra constellation bridging the earth and the sky it draws down a third of the stars. Similarly like the prophesy of the Red Dragon the Hydra conceptually had seven heads at the time of the writting of the book of Revelation around 64 AD (see image below). What is more fascinating is the secrets of the Red Dragon for this is an alchemical message. The Red dragon symbolizes the begging fire of the process of transmutation and it also represents the completion of the transmutation process.
The Red Dragon appears at both the beginning and end of the work. It is the chaotic energy of the First Matter at the beginning of the work that becomes the Philosopher’s Stone at the end of the work. Chemically, the Red Dragon is the pure red oil of lead in its initial state and the red powder of projection in its perfected or tamed state.- Hauck, Dennis William. The Complete Idiot's Guide to Alchemy (Lets us remember that it is the planet Saturn that rules Lead)
Perhaps this chapter of the book of Revelation is truly trying to show us that at a collective level of consciousness we will work the alchemical process over the next three and half years? (a process that began six months ago). This is where we will clear the waters and pathways of the seven chakras and make way for the age of Aquarius. The Red dragon of alchemy appears in the heavens to begin this fiery process on the mother, the child and her children of the coming age. Luckily the child that "was" to rule is taken to heaven to be kept safe and we see the queen regnant remains in his stead to guide us to our hearts as we follow Jupiter through the poisons of Scorpio and the hunting of Sagittarius to finally elude the devil of Capricorn when Jupiter and Saturn come to together to emerge as one in Aquarius! Now we must examine what is happening in astrology over the next three years as there is a lot to ponder including more celestial events that will materialize but for now here are some highlights and key points...
In February 2017 we had our first sign appear in the heavens with the lunar eclipse in Leo (opposition to Aquarius) and a solar eclipse in Pisces (the age we are transiting out of). This was the prologue to opening the curtains to the grand show. More was to come as we approached the summer with a double new moon in Leo, a lunar eclipse in Aquarius plus a solar eclipse in Leo. Then we had our apparition in the sky of the celestial virgin giving birth at the equinox along with Saturn three months on December 19th moving into it's home sign of Capricorn and now on January 31st 2018 a lunar eclipse in Leo and in February a solar eclipse in Aquarius; and again, this summer we have two more eclipses connected with Aquarius and Leo!!! (see table below for exact dates and degrees)
Other considerations... as mentioned before Saturn has moved into Capricorn it's home sign "return Saturn's reign" from December 19th 2017 to December 2020 when on the Solstice of December 21st 2020 Jupiter and Saturn will conjoin exactly at 0° as they marry into Aquarius! The arrival of the king of old (Saturn) and the current king (Jupiter) to welcome the new age one month later when the sun enters Aquarius on January 19th 2021! Counting from the the time of the Aquarius lunar eclipse of 2017 to the Sun entering Aquarius on January 19th 2021 is 1261 days so close is it the number in the Revelation text of 1260 days where the woman is pursued and fled into the wilderness that I have to wonder if the wilderness is the constellations of Scorpio, Sagittarius and Capricorn... "6) Then the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days." (1260 days) Revelation 12 : 6. The saga continues with the predicted coming of a new star in the constellation of Cygnus, The Swan in 2022 (part two coming)...
This is not the first time the stars have influenced events on earth and our collective psyche (ahem... Dec. 2012) and what shall we expect over the coming three years? Who really knows? but like any passing of rulership there may be a battle for those wanting to hold on to the past age and those ready to move forward into a new way of being. The rest of the chapter of Revelation twelve is rather intense except for those who are walking the path and moving into the place of purity, innocence and wisdom. They are the children of the star maiden and sun, the children of light who seem to emerge unscathed. Is this it? Are we going through the final changing of the guard into Aquarius? Only father time will tell! (ha! good old Saturn) Be sure to read the side note at the bottom of the article!
Revelation Chapter 12 : 7-17
February 10th Lunar eclipse in Leo 22° (opposition Aquarius)
February 26th Solar eclipse in Pisces 8° (passing age of Pisces)
July 23rd New moon in Leo 0°
August 7th Lunar eclipse in Aquarius 15°
August 21st Solar eclipse in Leo 28°
September 20th New Moon Virgo
September 22nd Equinox
September 23rd Celestial Virgin Birth
December 19th Saturn into Capricorn
January 21st Lunar eclipse in Leo 11°
February 15th Solar eclipse in Aquarius 27°
July 27th Lunar eclipse Aquarius 4°
August 11th Solar eclipse Leo 18°
After 2018 we won't see another eclipse season in Aquarius with Leo till 2026
December 21st Solstice
December 21st Saturn and Jupiter conjoin and move into Aquarius 0°
Jupiter and Saturn meet every 20 years but at the start line of 0° is super rare and on the solstice too!
January 19th 2021 The new age of Aquarius?
January 19th 2021 presidential inauguration (see note below)
A new star appears in the heavens the constellation of the Swan
*On a side note many astrologers have worked with the eclipses for President Trump's astrology with connection to his Leo ascendant for he was also born on a lunar eclipse. Here is an interesting fact... three and half years from the August lunar eclipse in Aquarius of 2017 takes us to end of his term when the next inauguration takes place on January 19th 2021! Now that is just weird!
The word Vipassana means seeing things as they really are. It is the process of self-purification by self-observation. One begins by observing the natural breath to concentrate the mind. With a sharpened awareness one proceeds to observe the changing nature of body and mind and experiences the universal truths of impermanence, suffering and egolessness. This truth-realization by direct experience is the process of purification. The entire path (Dhamma) is a universal remedy for universal problems and has nothing to do with any organized religion or sectarianism. For this reason, it can be freely practiced by everyone, at any time, in any place, without conflict due to race, community or religion, and will prove equally beneficial to one and all... Although Vipassana was developed as a technique by the Buddha, its practice is not limited to Buddhists. There is absolutely no question of conversion. The technique works on the simple basis that all human beings share the same problems and a technique which can eradicate these problems will have a universal application. People from many religious denominations have experienced the benefits of Vipassana meditation, and have found no conflict with their profession of faith... It is not a rite or ritual based on blind faith... It is neither an intellectual nor a philosophical entertainment. Dammah.org Code of Discipline
Through the power of critical thinking I give you my account of observations of the outer and inner worlds of the land of Vipassana, as taught by S. N. Goenka. By the testament of many personal and professional relationships I speak honestly and with truth through the power of discernment and not judgement. I was not the first break the vipassana Code of Discipline and our contract but the Code of Discipline was first broken by the course itself which created a relationship of mistrust and abuse to which many including myself continued this abuse on our own bodies, minds, emotions and spirits causing much harm. I am fortunate to have some knowledge of psychology and a ten year practice of working with my heart and spirit to come out of Vipassana with a different understanding then many before me this is why many leave the course after a few days and/or suffer psychological emotionally after the course or experience the opposite and become enamoured with the practice. I write to inform, to assist anyone coming out of Vipassana and for anyone who is considering taking this course and/or any other course for that matter. Knowledge empowers.
The first time I heard of the 10 day Vipassana Course, as taught by S. N. Goenka, was last year when one of my students had signed up for the course and then in August of this year (2017) the word, "Vipassana" kept coming up among the spiritual circles I conversed among. I decided it was time to experience the teaching for myself. In most cases anyone I had met who'd taken the training said it was wonderful and only one had mixed thoughts about it. Although few elaborated on why it was so great they simply stated it was something I needed to experience myself.
Looking into the course I got very excited! I loved the idea of isolation, time schedules, silence, restricted diet and 12 hours a day to meditate and explore the inner working of my mind and what I thought would be connecting to deeper levels of spirit. Some may cringe at such an idea but for me I know there is much value in such practices; discipline in any form produces fantastic results! After thoroughly reading all the material on the Dammah.org site I quickly checked my calendar and signed-up timing the course with the New Moon in Libra, symbolizing truth, balance and harmony (also known as the tarot card XI Justice). My choice influenced a close friend to do the same then we discovered another lady from our community had signed up too with-out her knowing we had signed on. This was an auspicious coincidence.
The few days before I left for the Yougnstown Vipassana Centre I felt the level of anticipation and maybe even fear arise in me and I knew this was going to be a profound experience. I called on my spiritual communities to pray and hold space for us as we entered into our 10-day commitment to the practice (I am so grateful to them because they will never truly know how much we needed them). I did not know what to expect and I simply trusted that I was being divinely guided to take this opportunity, although the reasons behind my journey where much different then I initially thought.
People who know me can attest that I am a very rational and critical thinker even though I am a spiritual teacher and healer I continuously attempt to never blindly follow any teaching even my own until it shows up exponentially in nature. I teach this as being our fail-safe net to keep us grounded in the world and to fully know and trust ourselves. I do my best to stand for love and compassion for life and know there is a big difference between judgement and discernment which requires knowledge. I know and trust myself and this is it what saved me from becoming trapped in a maze of confusion and "misery".
The drive to Yougnstown was a beautiful late-fall day and my husband was so generous to make the eight hour drive to drop us off at the centre. As we pulled into the entrance a feeling of peace ensued over me as I left the distractions of the outside world go to commit to deep inner work for the following ten days. In the female dinning hall I sat down to fill out the registration form, waiver and contract to my commitment to stay the 10 day course. To which I signed and orally agreed witnessed by the female course manager. In this contract I agreed to the Code of Discipline, to stay the 10 days and that I was doing this of my own free-will. I signed with no hesitation on the pretence of the statements made in the Vipassana Code of Discipline (please read the Code of Discipline as it will give you and understanding of the set and setting of the events taking place). Surrendering to the technique and having fours hours before the commencement of the course I went to my dorm room where I met my roommate and introduced myself. I gave her a big hug letting her know that even though we wouldn't be talking or looking at each other in the eyes over the next ten days that I would be right beside her and that we would be going through everything together. She was happy and so was I.
DAYS ONE AND TWO
Physically: Hard but for me enjoyable in the sense I knew my body was making big adjustments physically to support a strong sitting posture to be maintained for12 hours of meditation (with breaks to walk, use the bathroom and eat). I knew the physical discipline would pass and having trained to fight competitively in my mid-20's I knew the sacrifices one needs to make to work through the discomfort and pain to achieve amazing results. Luckily I have a nine year yoga practice for my foundation and know how to work with structure and alignment in a safe way i.e. the difference between muscle pain and physical harm. Unfortunately the majority of the students at the course had no such foundation nor where they given any safe mechanics to sit for long periods as not to cause harm to ones self. This I could let go of as I felt that each person would have the ability to know their own limits.
Emotionally: For the most part I felt very neutral or non-attached to my surrounding circumstances although something was beginning to arise with-in me that was telling me something wasn't right. I let this go by logically concluding this was a natural response to the physical discipline I was putting my body through. I also began to wonder what the words being chanted into my ears were at the beginning and end of the group meditations, as I had been told many times that this was a non-secular, non-religious rite or ritual, or philosophy. This made me a little annoyed. But I felt I could let this go as I was here to learn the technique and I was committed to giving it a "true chance" returning to my refuge, anapana.
Mentally: The power of breath "anapana" and observation is highly awakening. Clarity of mind was focused and precise. The technique of focusing on the triangle area of the nose while simply observing the breath and allowing it to do what it wants i.e. not controlling the breath, was present with much sensations felt in and around the nose. Full surrender to what is in the moment the breath for the breath is life! The evening discourses seemed rational and logical and a nice break from meditation. The Art of Living.
Spiritually: Well... no spirit for I had committed to the Code of Discipline; not use any other practices or beliefs for the ten day period. I consciously chose to stop my inner communication with god and/or spirit and my practices of connecting to my higher power and "a" higher power. Although I did question why the hell would I do something so ridiculous as that, with a sense of humour I attached to myself to my choice of committing to the Code of Discipline. It is my testament I did so, "Vigilantly" for a full five days then spirit came to me using the power of logic and rationality to open my heart and to the see the truth of what was really taking place. And so I now present to you what I observed and experienced...
Awakening to the third day sleep deprivation was beginning to show and the need to eat more food to have the energy to keep going was clear. Alas the restrictive nature of the diet did not allow for dinner in the evening which put the body and the mind under much stress which I totally understood because, when we are under stress it creates the perfect environment for our minds to become more alert and for us to "feel" and sense more. This all seemed like a rational and logical reasoning behind what was taking place. And a wonderful "science" to awaken our potential. For me it was not so bad as I already eat a very clean diet and I'm physically fit to engage in such extremes. But for many this is not the case. I could see the desperation beginning to show in the faces of my fellow practitioners and the way people were holding their bodies was showing low energy and pain. I also began to feel the atmosphere and tone of the centre begin to shift into struggle and sadness. Again I rationalized this as part of the process to bring us down low to arise above our physical condition.
Later in the evening discourse the content of the previous two days quickly shifted from rational reductionism to philosophy in an attempt to provide evidence to how miserable we all are in our everyday lives because of attachments we had or "cravings and desire" repeating the word "miserable" many times over an hour period and how the technique we where now going to be introduced to on day four was going to save us. I had a hard time with this discourse as I was not miserable nor did I feel I had issues with attachment as I've been practicing non-attachment for over 10 years now. This "philosophy" was a hard pill to swallow for me. I also had a fundamental belief that "desire" when in alignment with the heart and acting through the power of love was how true happiness was found. So I began to question myself which I quickly realized that everything around me and the circumstances being provide is designed to do just that. But again I was committed to my "contract" to let go and surrender to the technique, to give it a "true opportunity" to take hold. I also thought questioning myself was actually not a bad thing and so the process must be working. That night as I went to sleep I could feel and hear in my inner mind the sadness and desperation my roommate was experiencing. I could tell she was crying and I actually felt the whole women's wing crying. I too cried but it was not for my own condition it was for the condition of all those around me. But the technique was teaching us that this was somehow wrong that we needed to un-attach ourselves because this is what causing our misery. We were only to, "observe" and let go... "just observe, do not act or re-act... just observe". So many entered into their own misery and I entered into the misery of others. But I did not break the Code of Discipline I did not use any healing modalities or techniques to help others, I did not call on all my spiritual helpers, I did not call to god or spirit. I did not reach out to others or talk or look into others eyes, I simply returned to my refuge, anapana. And questioned where is the love in all this.
We received our first instruction on the vipassana meditation and I thought awesome it is all going to shift. It did not things progressed much worse. Sickness was spreading through the centre. And as a healer with the gift of sight I could see the energy around the hearts centres of people to begin to shut down. Which was very dis-empowering to watch especially knowing I had signed a contract to do nothing about it. That morning I received a vision in my meditation but before I share with you what I saw I need to share my personal journey over the last three years of working with the power of my heart.
Almost three years ago I began to have a very debilitating condition in my spine which would not allow me to sleep. I would be fine during the day but if I laid down for any length of time the pain would be so horrendous and my spine would seize up where it was very hard to move. There was much concern at the on set and conventional medicine quickly investigated including MRI's to ensure something more serious wasn't taking place. For five months I suffered from sleep deprivation and pain so much pain I had to put my physical yoga practice aside. Shortly there after I began to move into my life's purpose and my gifts and abilities as a spiritual teacher and healer began to emerge in full force. I had a strong foundation to fall on and understood the process going through my spine was a spiritual one as physically there was nothing wrong with me. I learned to live with my pain and accept it knowing that it would pass when the time was right. I also new through much self search and investigation of the nervous system that the pin point of the cause of this pain connected right into my nerve in my back that is known as the needling point in Chinese medicine for the heart. My heart was being broken open to move into the capacity for more love for the work I am know doing. This summer my back reached an apex and I knew it was in its final transmutation and I welcomed the severity of the pain knowing it was right on the surface ready to come out. And now for the last month I have been sleeping with no pain, doing, yoga again and coming fully into my power through the heart. I considered my process with this pain as being an initiation and not a karmic cause and consequence. I consider it to be one of my greatest trials and gifts and now I am so grateful for if I had not experienced this I may not have been able to stand in my power with the events that transpired over the past few days.
Visions are not uncommon for me nor is inner sight or spiritual experiences. So when I received this vision I didn't have the attachment or the excitement one would receive if they were experiencing this for the first time. I have ten years experience of walking and working in this capacity and now teach and mentor many students how to read the language of spirit. I know to trust when being spoken to and know when to act. The vision I experienced was the final "branch" to break for me as I had been ignoring what my body was already telling me because the technique was urging me to do so. Half way through the first day the heart nerve in my spine began to flare up specifically during the chants, group meditations and discourses. In the beginning I attributed this to the last of my physical ailment that was surfacing to be healed but here is the kicker it never hurt when I was sleeping. I pushed it aside committed to the technique and ignoring my own teaching I give to my students that the body always knows first! Then my vision came... I saw and felt my heart in my chest it had a tree growing out of it encompassing my entire lungs and chest with branches reaching through my body and rooting into the earth. The tree and my heart were one and pulsated a moldavite green colour it was crystalline like moldavite itself. Then I was taken deeper in to the centre of the tree where there was a branch connecting into the nerve of my heart line. On this branch was a plastic groom and bride like you see on a wedding cake. I knew immediately this was the symbol for a contract and relationship. Then the branch snapped and broke and the little figurine fell down into nothingness. I came to. Now there are many ways one could interpret this dream so instead of attaching myself to it I, "simply observed" and put it in my back pocket. That evening the discourse really got me questioning the philosophy and what was happening in this place. I felt I was being lied to, I thought that if the technique is so great then only teach the technique not the philosophy and certainly not the chants especially not knowing what they where saying. Then I started to really think about the Code of Discipline specifically, "It is not a rite or ritual based on blind faith... It is neither an intellectual nor a philosophical entertainment... and has nothing to do with any organized religion or sectarianism." If this was the case why where we ritualistically listing to these chants and why where the discourses thick with Buddhist philosophy and why where we told to simply let go and trust the process? Blind faith? I was certainly confused and honestly a little angry because the picture of what was happening was beginning to reveal its self. That night I went to sleep determined to have an audience with the teacher during the private question period after lunch. I still did not break the Code of Discipline.
I woke up early and went for a walk before the 4:00am bell went off. On the walking path I found a large tumble weed blocking my way. I picked it up and I could see this was the image of the tree that was in my vision but the tumble weed was dry and brittle; it was dead. I started to laugh spirit was talking to me even though I had turned off my communication with spirit it was right there beside me showing me my path and then I began to cry and I knew I had to get out of this situation. I broke the Code of Discipline and began to pray and talk with spirit for courage, for strength, for love, for non-judgment and most of all thank-fulness so much thankfulness. I composed myself and went into my early meditation dropping the technique and moving into the meditation of the heart. I broke my silence and sneakily approached my friend to let her know I was leaving but I would wait till after my audience with the teacher to make my decision. I could see in her eyes she was elated. When we moved into group meditation I began to move into my heart and hold space for every person in the hall. Before I had my meeting I asked for words of wisdom to speak through the heart in love and kindness. The teacher was kind and respectful of my questions. I kept them on the surface level of simple inquiries of philosophy premised on the discourses we had received. He gave more time then any other student for no doubt he could tell I was intelligent and articulate. I also openly confessed that I was attached to my philosophy and believes but no more then he and that there was probably no way to reconcile these two. I would say talking with him helped to realize the pressure and I decided to stay with the course using the best of my time to connect to spirit and hold space for the others there. I met with my friend and said I would stay and asked no matter what happened for the remainder of the course to stay in her heart. Little did I know she had broken the Code of Discipline way before me and was doing heart meditation and holding space for others. She was sad I had decided to stay on but figured if I could do it so could she.
That night the discourse made me very uncomfortable and I new it was going to be very hard to stay in the place of the heart and remain in course. When I went to sleep the energy in my room was so intense I could see light vibrating everywhere. I could tell my roommate had been crying. I wanted to stay for her to support her, I did not want her to be alone. That night I didn't sleep I stared to remember brainwashing techniques from the Korean war and how everything I was observing fit the criteria although not as extreme. This made it seem all the more subversive and nefarious being masked as enlightenment playing on peoples self-identity and egos. I figured I was strong enough to with stand my psyche being disassemble and/or disassociated and just then my mind I began to hum the mantras from the group meditations and I knew my sub-conscious had been violated. Even if I had the strength to stay who knows what damage it may have done deep in my mind. I knew escape was the only option and the only way I could stand-up to what was taken place. Actions speak louder than words.
I did not sleep. I counted every minute until after breakfast when I could talk with the female manager to which I am ever grateful for. She too was struggling as every woman had come to her crying yet she could do nothing because we were not allowed to touch or comfort each-other. God bless her for what she has seen endured and is enduring. I asked to use the phone to call my husband to leave she asked why? And I gave her many, many, many reasons. She understood and was fascinated by what I said for she had been in the room when I asked my questions during my audience with the teacher. She said she would have to confirm with the teacher before I could use the phone and she would come and find me afterwards. She also let me know that she had been talking with my friend and my friend had said to her that if I was to leave she would leave with me. I went back to my room and my room mate had not gotten out of bed and had missed breakfast I knew something was wrong. I went and got her a tea and placed it by her beside table. When I got back from my phone call she broke the Code of Discipline and said, "Thank-you" and I said, "Your welcome". I started to pack my things she asked, "Are you leaving?" I said yes! She said why and I told her how I felt she started to cry, "Do you have a car?" No, I said but my husband was coming. She asked if she could come and said of course we hugged and held each other for a long time crying in each others arms. Then she said god was looking after her for she was afraid she was going to have to walk to the next town to catch a bus I said, "God is taking care of both of us."
News came that the teacher didn't want us to leave until the group meditation in the afternoon so not influence the other students with our decision. I agreed to comply which gave me the opportunity to enter in to deep prayer for all the souls at the centre. Synchronistically I started to see why we had been sent there. The room number I stayed in was C39, in numerology C=3. 3 + 3 + 9 = 15 . XV is The Devil card in tarot it represents the illusion of the bonds and chains we put on ourselves. 1 + 5 = 6. VI is The Lovers card for only through the power of love are the chains broken and not through the power of "equanimity" or numbness to our thoughts, feelings , body and heart. We also left on the 6th day of the course and on the 24th which is again 2 + 4 = 6.
As we walked through the barren courtyard and down the road to the gates of the compound I could see my love standing on the other side of the gate. I thought we were free I was wrong. It's taken three days to work through and unwind from the events that took place but also to remain, "Vigilant" in holding space for those who remain and will need support as they return to their lives. Before going into Vipassana I had knowledge of brainwashing and knowledge of psychology this is what got me to serious think critically about what was taking place. With this knowledge I received information from my body and ultimately from my soul and spirit to see things as they really are!
I was not the first to break the Code of Discipline and the contract we made. The course broke it first by lying about the statements quoted at the start of this article. Dammah.org is an organized religion and/or sectarianism, they use a philosophical belief system to confess these believes it is not scientific at all. Read through the Pali mantra's Gem Set in Gold these are the chants we listened to. These are confessions of faith. We were fooled into surrendering our lives over to another. I seriously question the statement, "There is absolutely no question of conversion" and the statement, "people have found no conflict with their profession of faith... It is not a rite or ritual based on blind faith... It is neither an intellectual nor a philosophical entertainment." True it is not an intellectual or philosophical entertainment this is extremely serious shit! We listen to these chants, rites and rituals every day three times a day at a specific time each day, at the end many responded with sadu, sadu, sadu..."I agree, I agree, I agree". Never once did I say, "sadu, sadu, sadu" and now I know why!
Homage to him, the blessed one, the worthy conqueror, the fully self-enlightened Buddha...
The definition of a rite: a religious or other solemn ceremony or act. A body of customary observances characteristic of a church or a part of it. A social custom, practice, or conventional act.
The definition of a ritual: a religious or solemn ceremony consisting of a series of actions performed according to a prescribed order. The role of ritual in religion the prescribed order of performing a ceremony, especially one characteristic of a particular religion or church. A series of actions or type of behaviour regularly and invariably followed by someone.
I am so grateful to my spiritual communities The House of Mem and Hollow Bone Healing Lodge you have no idea how much I needed you during this intense time that I can only describe as spiritual warfare. Going to this Vipassana course is was like going into a pipe fast with-out a pipe! This deposition is a small summery to the events that transpired over my six days at the Yougnstown Vipassana Centre. There where many other synchronicities and messages from spirit so numbered it would take three days to recount all the events that took place and my story is just one of hundreds. The vigilant is not over but we are not alone, none of us have to this alone, we are bonded together in love!
If you have taken the Vipassana Course as taught by S. N. Goenka please read these articles on brainwashing and ask yourself seriously if this is what you have been through. Many people leave the course with dissociative and psychological disorders and many have lost their lives to suicide because of it (please research and read how many lives have been destroyed and the testaments from followers that have been with the organization for ten plus years who are speaking out). I suspect the level of discomfort and mental harm that has been done is way higher then reported like any form of abuse it is hard to stand-up and speak truth for fear. This means at some level you have been brained washed. Do not be silent stand up and reach out, find community, friendship, eye contact, touch and love support is available. For those who fall deeply in-love with this I have two words for you, "stockholm syndrome". Brainwashing doesn't work on everyone mostly for those who have a high sense of self or ego by breaking the Code of Discipline and leaving the course or calling on a higher power or inner power to tune out the mantras and philosophies being shoved into your sub-conscious when your in a highly suggestible state of mind, you can save your soul and your psyche. Go into your heart use your mind and always feel your emotions! By the way the Buddha never taught philosophies on Saṅkhāra's and that we have to purge them from our past lives! Know your shit do not follow blindly! Share this article get the word out set the captives free!
In the late 1950s, psychologist Robert Jay Lifton studied former prisoners of Korean War and Chinese war camps. He determined that they'd undergone a multistep process that began with attacks on the prisoner's sense of self and ended with what appeared to be a change in beliefs. Lifton ultimately defined a set of steps involved in the brainwashing cases he studied:
Read more on...
Brain Washing Techniques
How Brain Washing Works
How to recognize and Avoid Brainwashing
Did 10-day meditation retreat trigger woman's suicide?
Thank-you everyone for your love and support. I just want to say I don't think there is anything wrong with the Vipassana technique itself, it's the environment it is been taught in and all the other "attachments" to the philosophies and beliefs being repetitiously whispered in your ears when you're in a highly suggestive state of mind, body, spirit and when all your tools to think critically are being stripped away. I also think one's ego or pride is sometimes what keeps us in situations like this... to be able to say, "I did it, I succeeded in completing a difficult task." I also don't have anything against Buddhism either. It's important to know there are many different secs of Buddhism and the Dammah.org IS sectarian even though they are claiming they are not. The Buddha never wanted people to subjugate their lives to him or to any other teacher. S. N. Goenka has you take a vow to commit you life to him but few know this because its in another language (Pali mantra's Gem Set in Gold). Run people, run, keep running. And if you want to be extreme and disciplined go live in the wild and meditated with the law of nature, "Dammah" or maybe just do some Yoga Nidra in a lotus position (with some physical training behind you😉). Much love , Ria-Mae.
Full moon in Aries on October 5th at 12:40pm MDT, ignites love and passion allowing healing of relationships and bringing us into balance with our partnerships. This is where we need to become champions of our hearts as the lines of communication open up to express all that needs to be expressed. Just remember to stay in your heart and express yourself in non-violent and diplomatic ways.
The power of this Full moon is mirrored in Tarot card IV The Emperor. A powerful card of authority and steadfast energy which we need to steady through this opportunity to be completely open and honest about how we feel and what we need. Passions arise with Mars and Venus pairing up and Mercury is there to make sure your thinking and using your words wisely before you act. This passion of energy is going deep thanks to Pluto turning direct trine Mars last week and now trine Venus this week... death to all things in the past and rebirth to new possibilities. Time to stand-up for your heart, you cannot run away... mend your relationships and find new partnerships. Arise!
You have the power and authority! You stand firm in your choices enlightened and crowned; you are the Emperor! You are the commander and chief using the power of Fire. Your thoughts are in alignment with source and your spirit. You stand firm! You know the laws of cause and consequence. Your passion for life ignites the Fire in Your heart. Your recognition is equal to your governance. You are crowned King of your land, protect it with your heart!
For an amazing detailed description of this energy check-out RasaLilaHealing's video!