Divine Feminine

MERCURY-CONJUNCT-ISIS OPPOSED NEPTUNE RX-CONJUNCT-SIVA (7-8 Virgo-Pisces, 12-13 August 2015)

Mercury opposed Neptune

Blessings to All. Mercury opposes Neptune along the Virgo-Pisces axis, challenging us to be articulate, precise, analytical and pragmatic in our approach to the amorphous realms of transcendental spirituality. It’s a face-off between two energies which are so vital to the work that so many of us do as Spiritual Facilitators, Seekers, and Beings. Whilst Virgo is seeking definition, boundary and embodiment (to serve better), Pisces is seeking to dissolve, to remain unseen and unknown – and to connect with Mystery that is Spirit in undefinable ways. Neither is superior to the other.

Mercury is conjunct asteroid Isis (7 Virgo), representing the nurturing qualities of the Goddess Isis, and equally, the physical steps and tasks she must perform in order to provide that nurture. Neptune is conjunct asteroid Siva (8 Pisces), representing the formless, compassionate energy of Lord Shiva himself. The presence of these two asteroids deepens the archetypal nature of the astrological opposition. Here we see the Practical, Earthy Priestess face-to-face with the Boundless, Formless, Compassionate Masculine.

In a productive sense, the opposition between Virgo and Pisces and encourage us to find a balanced understanding of spiritual matters – in ways that integrate the Spirit, Mind, Body, Heart – everything. That would of course be, the ideal. But at times, the opposition becomes and unnecessary contest of strength and enforces false binaries.

For me, this manifested quite directly as transiting Mercury in Virgo is in my 3rd house whereas transiting Neptune in Pisces is in my 9th house. I ended up talking about a detailed plan of action for my dear brother (sibling – Mercury, 3rd house) who is like me, a spiritualist, albeit of a different kind. We used a combination of astrology (9th house) and, really, just listening to one another, to cover a lot of ground discussing issues quite vital to the Virgo-Pisces dynamic as we charted out some practical ideas to help him follow his Path with Spirit. It turned out to be quite a nurturing (Virgo) and spiritually rejuvenating (Pisces) conversation. Yay for us!

However, that’s a productive manifestation of this energy. It can manifest in different ways though, as the opposition forces two imbalanced expressions of Mercury-Neptune Retrograde or Virgo-Pisces to swing wildly to different extremes, and back.

Mercury in Virgo – in excess – may manifest as an overly harsh, critical, or nitpicky approach to the discussion of Service. Boundaries may appear to be set in stone, at least in the eyes of those who uphold them. Any alternative ways of viewing the same situation may then be criticized for not being ‘good enough’ or ‘spiritual enough’. In daily life, this would focus upon the daily rituals, routines and habits which we use as the building blocks of material existence. Issues surrounding health, wellness and daily work patterns can come to the fore. In the spiritual domain, the emphasis may be upon charting out the details, realizing the material requirements it takes to Serve Spirit in the way we are guided to. Mercury brings the focus of this energy to your thoughts, ideas, and ways you express them – probably a good day to postpone discussions on such topics with most people – unless you can bring in the Neptune-Siva archetype that can accept everything, even the feeling of being judged or misunderstood.

Neptune Retrograde in Pisces – in excess – can in itself, veer wildly between an indiscriminating acceptance of anyone and anything as being ‘spiritual’ – or – to a hard-edged rejection of anything that seems amorphous, indescribable or that requires one to ‘open up’ to Spirit. The middle path here is a willingness to experience Spirit, but with the knowledge that the Ego and its compulsions can make things appear differently from what they claim to be. Just try to avoid any spiritual extremes today – be it of what you might see as openness, or closed-mindedness. Take things you hear – and your reactions to them – with a grain of salt. Bear in mind that Neptune is famous for projections and distortions – if you feel insulted, chances are you’ve read something quite innocent in a way that triggers your own wounds. Though if someone is truly being a jerk to you, bring in Isis-Virgo and draw that line. Also bear in mind that Neptune is famous for its escapist tendencies, whenever it feels stressed or pressured in some way.

The interaction between the two can be quite interesting as Mercury and Neptune are in signs that they ‘rule’, so their influence will be a lot stronger. In my case, I found two of my sessions needed rescheduling due to mysterious (Neptune) electronic (Mercury) issues – which then meant I had time and head-space to have that unexpected conversation with my brother.

To sum it all up, we’re all balancing two different principles, or flows of energy in this opposition:

Surrender, Trust, Faith – Going with the Flow (so you can flow to wherever it is you need to Serve)
Integrity, Boundary, Holding your Ground – Manifesting the Form of Service (so you can channel the flow)

You can also read these ideas as they are woven into our discussions on the Divine Feminine and Divine Masculine, or Yin/Yang Dynamics, i.e. the Priestess Rising and the ‘New’ Compassionate Masculine.

They’re not mutually exclusive categories or ideas, just different sides of the same coin. Don’t be afraid to do both, or be both 🙂

In closing,

The waters of Pisces now look across to the fertile soil of Virgo. Together, they have the chance to sustain life. They need to come together in balance and respect for one another, lest all that remains is muddy water and barren soil.

How do you choose to embody that balance?

Where are you ‘too open’?
Where could you use a little more discretion and forethought in your spiritual experience?
Where do you need a boundary to better Serve?

What do you hold onto too tightly?
Where are you too closed?
Where do you need to open up to better Experience Spirit and Dance with its Mystery?

Whatever you choose will be right for where you need to be right now, but that doesn’t mean that will be your final, or absolute answer 🙂

Blessings to All,

Bairavee Balasubramaniam

The Sky Priestess

WALKING THE PATH OF THE PRIESTESS: SOME REFLECTIONS

SkyPriestess

My fiancée was sharing my interview on Priestessing, Politics and the Indian Parliament with his colleagues in India yesterday. Suddenly, he realized that some (if not all of them) might see me as delusional, a madwoman or a fake would-be guru (or a combination thereof).

Part of me felt sad, and the other part smiled (I’ll explain why).

For you see – despite being the land of a million goddesses, and the origins of some of the greatest spiritual philosophies in the world, Indian culture at the day-to-day level is strangely disconnected from these ideals – either through a focus upon the ritual form (and not necessarily the spiritual), or through the cynical, hardened eyes of rationalism. There are of course, exceptions, but that tends to be a fair generalization.

Despite Indian philosophical-scriptural exposition on ideas such as – the sanctity of woman and the Feminine Principle, or the idea that we walk as Divine Beings, often unaware of our spiritual inheritance – these are ideas that are disconnected from everyday culture there. Yet such principles are put forward as emblems of Indian heritage and culture, particularly when idealized and interpreted through different cultural perspectives.

Whilst I get the basis for such a reaction to my work and presence, I honestly do not see it as my problem. I thought about what I would feel if someone levied those views to my face – and the answer was — well.. not very much at all..

The baggage, the judgment, the condescension – that’s an issue with the one choosing to perceive my path in a certain way. And remember – perceptions (mine/yours/our) are never accurate reflections of reality (whatever that is).

And I’ve experienced that in mild – and – extreme ways during my pilgrimages in India and Nepal. Even when viewed with suspicion, distrust, ridicule, and at times being bullied by the people there – I have always found that the temples themselves have welcomed me in ways that seem miraculous to others, especially by those who live there.

Despite the harsh challenges, I’ve never allowed that to stop me doing what I’m doing. It’s certainly not a pleasurable experience or one that I consider myself some great martyr for enduring. I see it as part of the work that needs to be done to transmute a particularly rigid manifestation of societal consciousness (the super-ego construct). Just gotta keep on walking.

It’s a choice I made, that I rarely even think about it, in all honesty.

The sadness I do feel about it – and that too seems to be going – is when I consider the extent of spiritual disconnection between the people, the land and its spiritual essence. Just about every saint I adore in the Indian context (and other parts of the world) has been seen as mad, delusional, or fraudulent. And they are better appreciated posthumously, long after their death when society gradually begins to catch up with the vibration these powerful spiritual-in-flesh-vessels bore.

And here’s where the smile comes in, as soon as I thought that through and wrote a reply to my fiancée, I saw this on FB (It’s about a saint I love, whose path comes closest to the way I walk with Kali-Ma – Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa):

Ramakrishna_trance_1879

“People of his times labeled Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa as a madman. With their limited mind and prejudices, some creatures thought they had a license to judge him. The Paramahamsa was indeed mad but mad for and of the love of Divinity. He was committed to Mata Kali, the All-embracing Mother. He reached the state of perfection in the bhakti path not because of this belief or that faith. Even parrots have faith in their wings, fly wherever they believe seeds and nuts can be found. We wish we had one infinitesimal part of the Parmahamsa’s bhakti. Perfection comes through unconditional love and disinterested performance of action. If you are expecting anything – name and glory, badge and status from your karma, go join the boy-scouts or the marines for now but seek Grace at the earliest convenience. Jai Mata Kali.” ~ Yogi Ananda Saraswathi

**Now if that’s not a sign that the Universe has my back.. I really don’t know what is.

Chin up, eyes forward… and away we go!

Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam PhD
bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

PS – The interview in question that started all this! 🙂

REFLECTIONS: WHAT MAKES A PRIESTESS?

Statue_of_the_princess_-_priestess_Takushit_(4334574410)

Sometimes a Priestess finds herself in welcome company, and at other times she is the outcast, the ridiculed, the exiled, the heretic. Some people find the idea of a ‘Priestess’, ‘Goddess’ and the ‘Divine Feminine’ off-putting. Some minds open, and others close when they encounter these terms and the energies they represent.

Priestessing is an unusual vocation by today’s standards, and not everyone is going to get it or respect it, or need to. It’s not an easy road. It’s not particularly glamorous. It just is what it is.

God/dess knows it’s good to realize you’re not alone in the Journey. That there are others who feel just as you do. Who share the same faith, the same fears and who just ‘get it’.

Other priestesses have begun to reach out to me in response to my article called ‘Priestess is a Verb, Not a Title’ ( http://wp.me/p4OUNS-4c ). It moves me to see the time and effort that they have taken to write to me and narrate (in part) stories of their journeys. It is a good energy of ‘coming together’, of reunion in many ways – and it is what prompted this exercise of reflection you now read.

There are more of us than we realize, walking on kindred paths and paving a way forward for spiritual women to be seen as what they are, once more.

But what does all of this entail?

In other words – What makes a Priestess?

Walking on this path requires you on the one hand to completely commit yourself to something you consider sacred. On the other hand, you are constantly called to check-in with yourself, with that deep connection to Source/Spirit that moves you, with your development and how attached you are to a certain idea of Truth, a path, a practice, and so on.

On the one hand we act with utter faith, and on the other, we constantly feel into it deeper – allowing it to change, evolve and transform if need be.

At the very least, that is what I am called to do – and it keeps me from falling into stagnation and complacency – which is very different from a state of receptive stillness.

It makes the experience of Being a Priestess a very conscious one. Part of you is constantly attuned to this state of devotion and reflection on that path of devotion. It’s not a switch you can turn on or off, not a vocation that obeys the 9-5 schedule and has the weekends off. It’s 24/7.

The ‘reward’ (if you can call it that) you get by being a Priestess can’t really be measured in material terms. If the goal was to earn money, gain prestige and status, make friends, get your ego stroked / validated, etc. there are a lot of other, easier options that would give you that kind of ‘job satisfaction’.

Moreover, there are energetic and karmic consequences for Priestesses (and Spiritual Facilitators in general) who use their role primarily to fulfill their ego’s desires. That applies to us all, but more so for those who speak the language of Spirit.

Perhaps the real reward you get is the simple recognition that you are in fact, Honoring Yourself. A recognition, an acknowledgement that comes from within.

You express and embody that Sacred Truth that resonates with your Soul. And in so doing, you Honor the Divinity within you – which You are.

Perhaps you do that in a public role, perhaps it’s private – for your eyes only … either way – you’re just being you – that is a gift in itself.

Bear in mind that this is my take on The Path. Your understanding may be different, and that is perfectly fine. Stick to what resonates. Whilst I speak of Priestesses, know that I speak of an energetic archetype, not limited to a single gender.

Blessings as always,

Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam PhD
www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

Image Information: Statue of the princess – priestess Takushit (4334574410).jpg – By Tilemahos Efthimiadis from Athens, Greece [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

THE GODDESS MOVEMENT: A GLOBAL AWAKENING

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This is a massive awakening, with multiple geographic epicenters arising in tandem. Political changes in Africa and the rising of female leadership, the energizing of public discourse on sexual attitudes and the ‘causal’ attitudes of rape in India, women’s voices emerging from the Middle East – point to this being something that is happening across the globe. Clearly, the awakening is spreading like wildfire in the West, and that is something to be cherished and celebrated in its own right – but that does not make the West it’s epicenter.

On more than one site, I have seen casual references to how this Re-Awakening is a ‘Western’ (read: Caucasian or North American/European) phenomenon and that women from those regions will lead the way for others. When I hear or read about how the West will re-ignite the Goddess movement, I feel dismayed and to me history begins to echo once more.

I immediately recall the patronizing discourse of ‘educating the natives’ that arose with the earliest proselytizing attempts in Africa and Asia. I recall how the modus operandi of repressive, colonial regimes (in India for example) was to alleviate the suffering of the oppressed women there, who needed freeing from the shackles of their own religions and customs. That led to the codification of a multiplicity of Indian traditions, and in one single blow outlawed certain controversial customs, but also de-legitimized the many practices of peoples of the so-called ‘lower’ castes who had far more fluid attitudes towards marriage and sexuality. (A step backwards, you could say). Many other examples from the history of colonialism and the ideological machine that legitimated it provide so many examples of the same.

When we look to history, we see that any teleological (different from theological) explanation or description given to mass movements has almost inevitably reflected entrenched power hierarchies. In the narrative that I see arising, the West is (once again) the center of the globe – this time with its women, rather than its men, bringing Enlightenment for the Globe. And I find this a mistake that we can avoid, with some circumspection, critical thought and consideration.

Many of the compassionate, awakening, men and women I have on my site are Caucasian, and some of the most evolved spiritual individuals and teachers I know are Caucasian. So I have no issues there, no reason to argue why Western men and women cannot or should not be a part of this movement. What I find problematic is when a particular racial and/or geographic group begin to be uncritically hailed as ‘leaders’ for others to follow.

When we make such categories, when we draw the spiritual geography of this Earth with a particular location of the globe as its center, we make the same kinds of boundaries, hierarchies and power relations which so many of us on the Goddess Path rejected so heavily when it appeared through the institution of patriarchy. Let us avoid making the same judgments when so many of us seek equality and a leveling of the playing field.

We are at a critical time now where our movement has begun to amass enough energy that it stands at the brink of divergence, fragmentation, consolidation – or some other process. We get to choose to avoid the errors of the past, we get to choose to not have to re-learn the lessons of history – just as so many of us are beginning to see the need for herstory or even, ourstory.

For some who might think this to be a ‘trivial’ point, it is important to bear in mind that discourse – the way we talk about things – reflects, very powerfully, the way we think about things. When we privilege any one race or region as being the focus, we (whether we do so consciously, or unconsciously) relegate other centers to a peripheral focus. This was the thrust of the ideological machine used to justify colonialism and bringing ‘God to the natives’. This is the reason why the World Map we all know makes Africa smaller than it is and exaggerates the size of the United Kingdom.

And on top of everything else – for those you who integrate an understanding of the Earth’s kundalini (The Serpent of Light) and its rising in December 2012, the epicenter of that awakening took place in the Andean Mountains of Peru. Ironically, it is in ‘the West’, but not part of what most people mean when they use that term. Their teachings are sifting further and further into collective consciousness, but few ever consider this sacred site to be the ‘center’ of the awakening – and frankly, one does not have to!

This is a movement, as I understand it, for all. For men and women from North, South, East, West. It is a moment where we get to equalize. Where we get to right the wrongs of the past, or at the very least, to create a new balance that celebrates plural perspectives and provides multiple centers.

Unfortunately – and feel free to disagree with this if this is not your perspective, as a Priestess of Colour and a scholar of politics and history, I find that a lot of Western discourse and attitudes towards the spiritual traditions that have found center-stage in the ‘New Age’ movement are far too reminiscent of the ideology and attitudes of Orientalist scholars studying the ‘exotic’ other. So many traditions are being appropriated and given new life, which is a wonderful thing, but they are being done so in ways that do not always look at the reality of the people who live in the contemporary regions those spiritual teachings emanate from.

The spiritual teachings that so much of the New Age subscribes to very often co-exist paradoxically with oppressive, unequal realities for women in other parts of the globe. The beauty of Goddesses and the words that describe them in scripture fly across Facebook walls, but with few reflections on how a land that produced such prose can still kill its daughters and view them as burdens. Very often, these traditions become romanticized in themselves, and the critical question of – Well, why didn’t it work before? Why didn’t it empower the women of the land to rise? is completely missed.

And to me, that is a critical question, that is a key opportunity for us to engage with traditions of the past and identify new pathways for change. We may need to revisit or revamp these traditions that have on the one hand elevated female metaphysical energies, but barred its daughters from real positions of power – be it in politics, or even in the right to hold spiritual office … or even to enter a temple during their menstrual period, if only to open their Heart to The Divine. Whilst honoring traditions are important, idealizing them to the point that the key questions – of what didn’t work? what needs reworking? – needs to be equally addressed. And to this effect, the local knowledge and awakening that is happening concurrently in different global epicenters needs to be honored, integrated and seen as a valuable part of the Goddess Movement.

In the name of respecting ‘ancient traditions of the East/South’, let us not uncritically mouth the same ideology that somehow kept the women of those lands suppressed/oppressed.

Let me give you a concrete example: I have seen a rise in artistic and photographic imagery of the Goddess Kali/Durga as a Caucasian woman. (nothing wrong with that). But as a movement, little consideration is given to the message that imparts to women (from India) who are considered to be too ‘low’ to ever think of themselves as Goddesses. Have you ever seen a Laxmi with Dark Skin? Or one that wasn’t flawless? Ironically, at an anti-rape protest event that I participated in, I saw Indian women carrying placards that said that ‘we don’t need to be goddesses, just treat us as people’. Coming from the land of a million goddesses, this is a powerful statement.

What do we do with those messages? And why are they valued less, or sub-consciously perhaps, integrated less in the mainstream of this movement? We have so much to learn from the fierce self-assertion in the West (in this example) and the desire to assert oneself/be counted outside of the context of religion as expressed by Indian women. But until we see both ‘ways of knowing’ as equal, each side is bound to repeat the painful mistakes of the other. ..Food for thought…

In closing:

Daughters and Sons of the Mother, wherever you are, whatever the colour of your skin may be – now is the time to Rise. Together, we are all — at the Center.

With Respect,
Bairavee, Daughter of Kali

www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

_____________________

Post & Image by: Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD
Images: Compilation of Goddess and Earth images freely available on Wikipedia under the appropriate sharing license
Please do not use this image without permission, even in modified form

ENDING THE CYCLE, HEALING THE COLLECTIVE: The Abuse of Power and the Feminine Principle

Ending the cycle

The Rising Feminine principle is one that has been suppressed for thousands of years, and now she is beginning to make her way back to Balance, to coexist alongside the Masculine.

Astrologically, the fierier, feistier, darker side of this rising impulse is represented by bodies like the Three Lilith-s, Eris and so on. Today, we have the Mars/Neptune opposition with Black Moon Lilith – prompting this post of reflection. It is a powerful time for spiritual facilitators to look at the Shadow Work hidden in the Rising Feminine Principle, and its relationship with the Masculine. For the astrology of it, please see:http://wp.me/p4OUNS-hI

As far as I am concerned, – and I am deliberately using the ‘I’ here to let you know that this is my perspective – subjective, personal, my understanding of truth – Accept it only if it resonates with you – …

As far as I am concerned, patriarchy is not the sole cause for the downfall of the Feminine – but a reaction to it. As one who has served through the various lifetimes, with memories awakening now, I see that women had a hand to play in it too.

Archeology and memory tells us that we were in the hallowed citadels of spiritual and political power We were in that elevated position, that pride of place.

And we fell. Oh gods how we fell. I remember it very well. I’ve spent time weeping when these memories arose (both as victim and abuser).

Abuses of power, the conflation of Ego with Spiritual Direction, energetic imbalances, sacrifices, slavery, you name it – we did it. As did they, later on.

(even this we/they business is a tenuous one, we’ve all been on both sides of the equation)

Pride takes a hard fall. And when we fell, it ushered about the rise of a new social, political and cultural order – what we describe as patriarchy. Some sources place it to about 7,000 years old in origin (I suspect a little older than that) – but we really need to ask ourselves what came before it, and why it went away.

Patriarchy, as I understand the term, established itself later. In some sense, you could call the Priestesses who abused their power as its first precursors. We did it ourselves, everything else followed afterwards, i.e. the patriarchal rule which we have collectively come to rebel against.

Which is why in this life, I’ve found it very challenging to own my power and establish myself for the work that I came to do – till recently. I sometimes get … very strange emails from people who find it threatening that I do the work that I do – only to realize they are simply projecting the fear of the past that I’d buried deep in my subconscious. I’ll tell you one thing – facing that part of me was the scariest thing I’d ever done.

A great change in my energy came about when I began to look at that part of myself – having healed the ‘victim’ – now to the ‘abuser’ – and it is the current journey I am on. Love, forgiveness and unconditional acceptance seem to be the only way forward for me, and quite likely, for men and women remembering all parts of themselves now.

So what does one do with that information?

I feel that complete healing is possible only once we stop blaming the ‘other team’ which – committed its own brand of perversion against the feminine principle. But it was not they who set the seed, they responded to it and institutionalized a particularly cruel form of exclusion, subjugation and cycles of victimization. And we are now responding to that.

We tend to say that men fear the power of Woman. And part of it is because we are truly powerful. Exceptionally creative, resilient and strong.

But perhaps, for a moment, we can also imagine that at a collective, racial level – we gave them something to fear. And from what I remember – of myself and others from these lifetimes – we did. That does not excuse their attitudes today, but puts it in a different perspective.

And so the cycle began thousands of years ago, till victims and perpetrators changed sides so often that it makes little sense to hold onto those dynamics.

Yes, men have abused women greatly – but the truth is we’ve done the same. There are no hands that are free from that cycle, unless they are ‘fresh arrivals’ to this earthly plane.

I see it all the time in charts of my clients and the movement of those energies through the natal chart, playing out into their day to day realities.

And yes, as a relatively young woman from a racial minority in this life – I too have been abused by men (and other women) in my journey. I get why holding onto those wounds seems like a survival mechanism, I get why the blame-shame dynamic seems like something you have to hold on to so you don’t compromise some sense of self-worth and dignity – up to a point.

I had to let go of just that to actually begin my Path of Service in this life.

Bear in mind that the masculine/feminine duality as a whole is one that we do not need to be entrenched in. When you look at souls from the perspective of lifetimes, as I tend to do in my work, one has to give up the luxury of neat dichotomies, or even of the idea that Y is evil and X is not.

We’ve all been men, we’ve all been women. And we come into incarnation, very often, to experience the ‘other side’ of the polarity.

At least this is what is true for me.

Let it be understood that I am not justifying acts of violence as ‘spiritual balancing acts’, or that I am saying that people should not be held culpable for any act of suppression.

What I am saying is that the cycle will only end the moment we stop running in it.

Blessings to All,

Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD
www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

Photo: Bhairavi – The Rising Sun 19th Jan 2015 by Bairavee Balasubramaniam. Note the cloud running across the sun, looks like the astrological glyph for Black Moon Lilith! 🙂

*** POSTSCRIPT – A friend of mine wrote this in response to reading this post. I really resonated with it and thought it a great inclusion – Quoted here with permission: “Yes it is time to realize we have played all fathoms of the spectrums of a soul. There are reasons why we fell into being suppressed as women but also know that men were also done this way in the history of this Earth. It is time we embrace the duality of who we have been and who we are now. This is what we came to learn. We no longer need to be on one side or the other….we are to come to balance all aspects of our soul. Thank you for your insight and know that this is just my opinion as well” ~Waynie Hoffman, founder of Feminine Spiritual Path on FB.

VESTA, Goddess Asteroid of Priest/essing: A Few Notes by Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD

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In the skies right now, Vesta is part of a Grand Trine and a near-Grand Sextile, as I discussed Earlier. She is helping us to (re) birth a Goddess-friendly intuitive paradigm, along with Juno in Cancer and Neptune Retrograde in Pisces. Juno is the element and energy of Divine Feminine energy as a whole – we know her as Asherah, Sophia-Gaia, Shakti – and so on. Vesta is her Priestess, tending the Sacred Flame in the Self and Others. And Neptune Retrograde drives us to dig deeper and to look at the Truth in our own Spiritual Conceptions.

Vesta generally asks us to look into ourselves, our most initimate (often sexual, reproductive) wounds that block our sacred-creative energy and Connection with Life-Source. She tells us that the healing of these wounds will allow us to tap into the wealth of regenerative, spiritually nourishing energy once more. She tells us how to Light the Lamp in ourselves, yet Again… Glowing with the Energy of the Goddess. In Scorpio (where she is now at 7 degrees), these lessons are further emphasized and highlighted. The challenge here is to know how to give, and how much.

Vesta, at present, is conjunct the asteroid Eurydike – Eurydike was a mythological figure associated with death by serpent, and confinement in the Underworld. There are many ways to interpret her mythology, but it resonates strongly with the element of sacrifice in the name of love. Her husband, Orpheus, fails to retrieve her from the Underworld as he is not willing to have faith and disobeys the condition of her release from death – to not turn around as he walks out of the place. He turns to look, and *poof* she’s gone.

With Vesta conjunct Eurydike, priest/esses in service of the Awakening Divine Feminine will be especially challenged all around to globe to sacrifice something or another. The question is what, why, and how? Sometimes it may be a sexual partner, other times, it may be an intimate friendship that is no longer compatible with your path. It can even be an outmoded view, as painful as it is, that you cling on to and limit yourself with.

But something clearly has to go – Give it up, but know why you do so.

Vesta/Eurydike oppose Bienor, another asteroid, at 7 deg Taurus. Bienor has many interpretations, most of which center around strength, and some concept of integrity. In opposition to Scorpio’s sexuality, underworld affiliations, healing/regenerative ability and deep magical connections – Bienor is likely to question how you manifest these Scorpionic energies through your activities of priest/essing.

It is important to note that the inclusion of Bienor completes the Grand Sextile – it would trine Mercury in Virgo (which opposes Neptune Retrograde) and Pluto in Capricorn (which opposes Juno in Cancer). So the act of service-integrity-sacrifice in your spiritual vocation, calling or path leads to a powerful anchoring of Energies for Manifestation.

Bienor represents a position of power that can also house those who perceive themselves to be ‘maintaining the status quo’ (Taurus), and casting judgment, or creating resistance to your Scorpio-based activities. The Priest/ess, facing this judgment, must then choose to respond to it with integrity, rather than revenge, retaliation or a further cycle of judgment or blame.

Perhaps what we’re called now is to Sacrifice the sense of control that Scorpio so enjoys and to realize that this Path is not a comfortable, or an easy one. It is ancient, but is also deeply challenging. At times we are called not to hit back, when we are attacked. At times, we are called to smile, stay still in the line of fire.

Wholly ignoring the Ego, we are called to Burn, Burn with the Flames of Spirit. I would associate this energy with Joan of Arc, with the Witches of Salem, with the energy of the Condemned, and hunted Feminine Spiritual Facilitator – She (or He) that has embraced the Divine Feminine in a spiritual vocation of Priest/essing in Her Name.

Now all this doesn’t mean you’re supposed to throw yourselves into a literal fire or anything. That’s where Eurydike’s lesson comes in: Perhaps it’s letting go of a snide remark or judgmental attitude towards you or your path. Perhaps it’s releasing yourself from a bond where you can’t continue your path without facing daily attack or criticism. Perhaps it’s simply Aligning yourself with Spirit, and realizing that whatever challenges and vulnerability we might feel now is just part of our Collective Learning Curve as part of this Massive Awakening.

In whatever way this challenge arises, and it will – especially Jupiter (at 7 deg Leo, loosely conjunct Venus at 9 deg Leo) is squaring Vesta (7 deg Scorpio), we’re likely to face criticism or the heavy hand of the judgment by others.

Stand Tall as your Tend To Your Sacred Fires, Sisters and Brothers.

For those interested – I speak about these energies here:http://wp.me/p4OUNS-4L

Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD
www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

Image: Frederic Leighton [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

THE LESSONS OF THE ASTEROID GODDESSES AS MARS TRINES NEPTUNE RETROGRADE – Astrology Self-Study Article # 2 by Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD

Karmas Fork in the Road How do you Become Whole

Blessings to all,

All Asteroid Goddesses are connected in two powerful alignments in the sky right now: Juno, Ceres, Vesta, Pallas Athena – linked together by the Mother-Archetype of the Moon. They make a Wedge and T-Square aspect (described below). These Goddesses collectively teach us the value of self-nurture as we seek wholeness through the Divine Feminine in the Self and the Outside World. These lessons comes just as Mars (Masculine, Yang energy) is about to trine Neptune Retrograde (vision, inspiration, spirituality).

As this is an Astrology-Self Study article, I go into these aspects to some depth. Here is a shorter piece with the gist of what’s happening ❤ ~ http://wp.me/p4OUNS-3D

In this article I also introduce my understanding and experience of Juno, the Goddess Asteroid traditionally associated with Marriage and the Soul Mate. Juno will be working her magic all throughout August and till late September 2014

ASPECTS

We’re having an intense Wedge and T-Square in the skies – Peak Phase: 6:59 pm till 11:28 pm (GMT + 8), 7th August 2014

Both aspects share the same opposition (Moon-Juno).

The Wedge (opportunity to bring harmony to a situation) involves
Moon sextile Ceres
Ceres trine Juno
Moon opposed Juno

The T-Square (crisis that can precipitate creative breakthrough) involves
Moon square Pallas
Pallas square Juno
Moon opposed Juno

To summarize, what we’re going to see is two different energies – the Moon in Sagittarius and Juno in Gemini seeking to find a common meeting ground, or place for coexistence.

The Moon in Sagittarius seeks freedom through adventure, and has the ability to connect emotional, sub-conscious and intuitive energies through the exploration of Self-through-the-World. It can also symbolize escapism from the true work of exploring the Self by becoming overly hedonistic, seeking experiences solely for the pursuit of pleasure, and not deeper growth.

Juno – is a complex character to analyze – Whilst astrology calls her the Goddess Asteroid of Marriage and The Soulmate – I see her as a lot more than that. I shall be doing a post on her separately. I see her as representing the very essence of That Cosmic Other Half – The Divine Feminine in balance with the Masculine. Call her Asherah, Shakthi, Sophia – whatever your tradition guides you to do. But She essentially calls us to find and reconnect ourselves with that Primordial Feminine Energy that permeates all of Creation. Neither stronger, nor weaker, than the Masculine – without Her (or rather, the principle she Represents), spiritual experience is essentially incomplete. I would re-frame her as the principle of Feminine energy seeking completion, which is a more nuanced exposition on the way she is commonly understood – Intuitively, it feels more accurate to analyze and interpret her in this way. She is far too complex a goddess to pin down in a single category of ‘marriage and the soulmate’.

In the sign of Cancer, she calls to us – in our physical, environmental and metaphysical-primordial relationships to the Womb. She asks us to reach out and find, in ourselves, or in others (whichever appropriate), the ‘missing half’. Where is the Divine Feminine principle within yourself, and in the people you share your ‘truest nature’ with?

The Moon in Sagittarius can give us the courage to go forth (externally) to seek-in-the-World those connections and energies – with the understanding that all is but a Reflection of the Self. Alternatively, it can facilitate an escapist adventure that takes us away from our truest Selves in search of Union. That the Union we seek must first be found in ourselves, than in other people is an oft-forgotten idea – thanks to the plethora of cultural productions in the media that romanticize codependency and the idea that we cannot be whole in ourselves. (For instance: I love Disney, but man, did it take a while to de-program from that idea that a woman cannot be whole/happy without a man to protect her and rescue her!)

So we are called to Seek out the Union we desire. How and where and with whom we do is our choice entirely. This is where Ceres (The Nurturer) and Pallas Athena (The Strategist-Healer-Warrior) enter the picture. Ceres creates a beautiful flow of nurturing energy from its position in Scorpio (having just entered Scorpio). She beckons us to find our answers in ways that nurture and honor the deepest parts of our Spirit, our sexual/intimate selves and the parts of us which have been hidden under the label of ‘taboo’, ‘shame’ or the proverbial ‘blind spot’. She asks us to look past superficialities and into the deeper Mystery of the Sacred Self, often Veiled in Shadow.

— Remember that Vesta is close by (2 degrees from Ceres) encouraging us to nurture, honor and tend to our inner flames, burning in the Sacred Temple of the Body — Her influence (The Priestess, The Guardian of the Sacred Flame) is also felt in this alignment.

I am thankful for the T-Square, as an abundance of Trine and sextile energy in combination can create powerful flows of energies towards things in ways which may seem ‘fated’, but in actuality, are not. Not all that we are drawn to at this time will be right for us – and having that pressure to choose, that reminder of the need for discernment in our spiritual choices and the experiences that result from them is a blessing.

At this time, Pallas Athena in Virgo calls us to stand up for ourselves, assert our space, our worth and and integrity in the space/ground we stand on. She challenges us to find strategic ways to heal ourselves and discover greater self-sufficiency. Whilst Virgo is associated with the notion of service, we often forget that self-care, and self-nurture is equally — a gift that we can give to the Universe. For the love and wholeness we can create in ourselves, first of all, radiates into the Universe and (to paraphrase Marianne Wiliamson) subconsciously gives others the permission to do the same.

In search of our ‘missing half’, within or without, we may get carried away by the flowing energy of the Trine. Pallas reminds us with its sharp square to Juno and the Moon that we need to put our pursuit of spiritual growth and wholeness as a priority. Seeking wholeness in other pursuits or with others can be as important (ideally), but it is important not to neglect the qualities of self-assertion and self-care. This is further validated by the semi-sextile between Pallas Athena and Ceres – this creates an opportunity to harmonize both energies, whilst remaining cognizant of the fact that both work differently. Pallas charges forth in Virgo (Earth) whilst Ceres nurtures in Scorpio (Deep Water)

And what a time for the asteroid Goddesses to be collectively teaching us such a powerful lesson in finding Balanced Love – for – at 8:20 pm later today (GMT + 8) Mars trines Neptune Retrograde. Masculine energy (Yang, Shiva, God Energy) flows beautifully with the planet of Transcendentalism, Ego-Dissolution and Universal Merger. In Retrograde, the illusory aspects that can accompany Neptune are reversed – We see what lies beyond the Veil, as the Bubble of Illusion bursts. This can manifest as a man, or someone manifesting powerful masculine energy coming suddenly into your life to facilitate powerful spiritual realization — through disillusionment (if you’re holding onto ideas not in alignment with Spirit), or, deep, internal awakening of a gentler fashion.

There will be the strong desire to romanticize or idealize this Masculine energy as it comes to you, but view it through balanced eyes as best you can. Know what it teaches you, and what it does not. Know what it represents, and what it can not.

This is how I interpret the metaphysical aspect of this Trine.

In the material sense – and I thank Maria DeSimone’s article for reminding me of this lovely aspect of the Mars-Neptune trine (paraphrased) – That you may have a powerful, assertive drive to manifest spiritual principles, visions or inspirational ideas at this time.

I would add: Harness this energy well, but remember the lessons of the Goddesses as you do. For there must be Balance.

A final note – the Moon will be septiled to Mars (1/7th of a circle, the 7 vibrational frequency) as its trine with Neptune occurs. What you choose at this time – the ways you choose to connect with your Divine Selves will mark the beginning of a new cycle, and the end of an old one. It is a powerful, karmic indicator of the magnitude of this event. To borrow the a phrase from Robert Wilkinson, the septile represents the ‘Karmic Fork in the Road’.

So ultimately – which Path do you choose to find Spiritual Wholeness at this time?

Blessings to All,
Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD
www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

Kali-Ma Dances her Tandava on the World’s Stage: The Rise of the Dark Goddess by Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD

Kali Tandava

 
Blessings to all,Today, we’re collectively experiencing a Grand Fire Trine linking together Uranus Rx, Sun, Mercury, Lilith and the Moon in a potent configuration. I have written on the astrology of this here for those interested: http://wp.me/p4OUNS-3d
 
 
Lilith will also feature prominently during the Aquarius Full Moon, a few days from now. Those performing rituals to Her, or for the rise of the Feminine in general, may want to time their spiritual activities to align with the Full Moon.
 
 
This configuration energizes, charges and launches the energy of Lilith (the Suppressed/Dark Feminine) onto the World’s Stage, allowing her to emerge as a Leader, Teacher and Being in her Own Right.
 
 
The energy of Lilith in astrology corresponds to other ‘Dark Goddesses’ such as Kali-Ma, Goddess Lilith, Goddess Ereshkigal, Goddess Pele, Goddess Vajrayogini, Goddess Mariamman, Goddess Pechaiamman, Goddess Ishtar/Innana, The Morrigan, The Cailleach, Goddess Dhumavati, Goddess Hekate and other aspects of the Dark Crone / Protectoress / Mother / Destroyer (of Negativity). There are many others, including Goddesses for whom Darkness is but one aspect of their Being. I would include Lady Brighid and Lady Isis to that list.
 
 
To be a ‘Dark’ Goddess has nothing to do with being ‘Evil’. It simply means that this aspect of Divinity operates in the Blackness of the Earth, That Womb, or Eternal Night. It is She who watches over your Shadow as it moves between realms, or through different stages of birth-death-rebirth. It is She who burns so you can be Reborn; She who Destroys so Creation can continue.
 
 
To be a ‘Suppressed’ Goddess (and the two are often conflated) is to have your worship outlawed, banned, criminalized or demonized – made out to be something that it is not. It is a distortion of the protective and nurturing qualities associated with the Ancient Mother.
 
 
To be a ‘Goddess’, you only need look in the mirror and Re-member.
 
 
For there is Divinity in All.
 
 
As Lilith conjuncts the Sun (illumination, awareness), Mercury (communication, perception) and trines Uranus (revelation, insight) and the Moon (the nurturing Goddess, the Womb of the Earth) – She Awakens, Arises, and Becomes.
 
 

At this time, honor those parts of yourself cast into Shadow. Too often we believe that all that is Dark is Evil, and forget that our Shadow can simply be parts of ourselves we have no yet accepted – in this case – the (Feminine) Divinity in All Beings, and the Power She Wields.This is a time for Her to Rise, and I hope many of you will heed the call to Dance, Dream, and Embody this aspect of Sacred Energy as her influence only intensifies in the skies.Rising Woman, Rising Man, You cannot be stopped unless you choose to be at this Time. My Fire spreads through you and around you, Giving Life, Death and Birth to this World. I can no longer be Hidden.

 

That is Her Message, through me, to you.

 

Links:

 

For those of you would like to hear more of my perspective on The Dark Mother, here is a link to a 1-hour radio interview aired on Get on the Grid With Chessie Roberts Radio Show. Link:  http://intentionradio.com/2014/06/shining-a-light-on-the-truth-about-the-dark-mother-of-the-goddess-path/

 

For those of you would like to join a community devoted to honoring Her in this form, please visit: https://www.facebook.com/TheDarkMothersChildren on Facebook.

 

This page,  The Dark Mother’s Children will be celebrating its 6 month mark (in terms of moon cycles during the Aquarius Full Moon). I am its admin, as is my brother Ashoka Mohannan

 

A Virtual Shrine to Honor The Dark Mother: http://nshrine.com/shrine/Dark_Mother

 

Blessings and Love to All Beings,
Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD
A Daughter of Kali
www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

 

 

Image Information: “Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple – Hindu goddesses” by Matthias Rosenkranz – originally posted to Flickr as Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons –http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sri_Veeramakaliamman_Temple_-_Hindu_goddesses.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Sri_Veeramakaliamman_Temple_-_Hindu_goddesses.jpg

— with Ashoka Mohannan and Tara Fire-Tiger.

ARISE, AWAKEN AND BE! By Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD

[Reprint from 5th September 2013]

Original Image

In ancient times, the world’s civilizations worshiped the Great Mother, honored the elemental and natural metaphysics of existence, living in peace with Nature. Women lived and served as priestesses in hallowed temples, celebrating their sacred connection with the Divine through their bodies, and often, their liberated sexuality. And everywhere the Mother was to be found, so too was the Serpent, and the Sea.

Many of these civilizations we have forgotten entirely, remaining in our collective memories through ‘flood myths’, folklore and a vague sense of recognition. The temples of Atlantis, Lemuria and Mu still call out to those who are willing to listen.

With the rise of the written word and the enforcement of patriarchal social norms, humanity lost its sacred connection with the Divine, with Nature, with its priestesses. And the world changed.

In an age where women are still abused and seen as unequal, despite monumental breakthroughs in science, technology, education and articulations of political equality – women are still are kept out of sacred spaces, their intuitive wisdom ridiculed and ignored, their sacred blood seen as wretched. There is no more cause to wait: It is time to Arise, Awaken and Be.

With Love, with Memory, with Connection, let us find our strength once again and re-build this broken connection, let us celebrate the sacred union of the Divine Masculine and the Divine Feminine to find ourselves whole once more.

Let us bring our priestesses back into the temples, back into the heart of spiritual life, alongside priests. Let us honor Nature and her fierce, wise and loyal Serpent and allow these energies to light the way for our future. Let us bridge the diverse religious and spiritual traditions of the world through the Gateway of Love in the Heart, the Gateway of Home in the Earth and the Ocean and the Gateway to the Cosmos in the Crown.

Let us commune with the consciousness of forgotten civilizations submerged by time and the oceans, supported by intelligence and compassion whose origins we are yet to comprehend. Advanced in their spiritual knowledge, they call out to us to bring back this path once again: Of Goddess, Serpent and Sea.

Arise, Awaken and Be

Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD
Founder-Admin of The Goddess, The Serpent and The Sea: Building Pathways of Light
http://www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

Image and Post by Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam PhD. All rights reserved.

The Goddess, The Serpent and The Sea: Building Pathways of Light by Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD

GSS Logo

 

The Goddess, The Serpent and The Sea: Building Pathways of Light, or GSS, is the first Facebook Page I founded on the 5th of September 2013 (during the Virgo New Moon). It was this page that became my first public platform through which I could reach out, communicate with, share, explore and embody my growing spiritual consciousness. Today, on August 5th 2014, GSS has reached over 5000 souls and counting, in what is undoubtedly a Conscious, Growing Community of Love. I invite you to join this community if you so wish by going to:  https://www.facebook.com/GSS.Pathway.Of.Light or @thegsspathway

I am reprinting here, the first article which I posted on GSS – much of the information resonates strongly with me still, even more so than it did before. My thanks goes to all members of this community, past, present, and future.

Blessings to All.

Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD
Founder-Admin of The Goddess, The Serpent and The Sea: Building Pathways of Light
http://www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com; https://www.facebook.com/GSS.Pathway.Of.Light

[Founding Article Reprinted Below: Original Imagery shown]

Original Image

In ancient times, the world’s civilizations worshiped the Great Mother, honored the elemental and natural metaphysics of existence, living in peace with Nature. Women lived and served as priestesses in hallowed temples, celebrating their sacred connection with the Divine through their bodies, and often, their liberated sexuality. And everywhere the Mother was to be found, so too was the Serpent, and the Sea.

Many of these civilizations we have forgotten entirely, remaining in our collective memories through ‘flood myths’, folklore and a vague sense of recognition. The temples of Atlantis, Lemuria and Mu still call out to those who are willing to listen.

With the rise of the written word and the enforcement of patriarchal social norms, humanity lost its sacred connection with the Divine, with Nature, with its priestesses. And the world changed.

In an age where women are still abused and seen as unequal, despite monumental breakthroughs in science, technology, education and articulations of political equality – women are still are kept out of sacred spaces, their intuitive wisdom ridiculed and ignored, their sacred blood seen as wretched. There is no more cause to wait: It is time to Arise, Awaken and Be.

With Love, with Memory, with Connection, let us find our strength once again and re-build this broken connection, let us celebrate the sacred union of the Divine Masculine and the Divine Feminine to find ourselves whole once more.

Let us bring our priestesses back into the temples, back into the heart of spiritual life, alongside priests. Let us honor Nature and her fierce, wise and loyal Serpent and allow these energies to light the way for our future. Let us bridge the diverse religious and spiritual traditions of the world through the Gateway of Love in the Heart, the Gateway of Home in the Earth and the Ocean and the Gateway to the Cosmos in the Crown.

Let us commune with the consciousness of forgotten civilizations submerged by time and the oceans, supported by intelligence and compassion whose origins we are yet to comprehend. Advanced in their spiritual knowledge, they call out to us to bring back this path once again: Of Goddess, Serpent and Sea.

Arise, Awaken and Be

Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD
Founder-Admin of The Goddess, The Serpent and The Sea: Building Pathways of Light
http://www.bairaveebalasubramaniam.com

Images and Post by Priestess Bairavee Balasubramaniam, PhD. All rights reserved.