June 4, 2012

Die before Dying: A Lesson from the Venus Transit.

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Death said: “The good is one thing, the pleasant another….The wise  goes around them and distinguishes them. The wise prefers the good to the pleasant, but the fool chooses the pleasant through greed and avarice.”

~ Katha Upanishad

The movement of Venus across our sun is a journey to the land of the dead.

In other words, it’s confronting your greatest fear.

Within every living creature is a striving for self-preservation. Even if you chase a tiny ant with intent to kill it, it will flee—feverish to live. Every action you take has this same conviction to avoid death behind it.

You eat to avoid death. You sleep to avoid death. You engage in sex to avoid death. You look both ways before crossing the street to avoid death. You don’t say what you feel to avoid death. You possess things to avoid death.

And yet, death comes all of a sudden to claim you. Or worse, he takes someone you love, leaving you in a state of impermanence. The realization that nothing whatsoever lasts is as uneasy as it is a liberating experience. However pleasant or unpleasant your current trajectory may be, you now know:

It’s all going to change.

Death is, therefore, teacher.

With each death you experience comes a powerful initiation into more profound states of clarity, which are wisdom portals into the nature of the intelligence operating on all planes of existence.

In other words, death makes you deep. It’s actually quite an amazing experience. So it’s not death that troubles most of us. It’s returning back from death to life that’s most painful.

When I heard the news my father had died suddenly in a skiing accident, I felt the ground open up underneath me. My stomach landed in my throat. I couldn’t swallow for a solid year afterward without discomfort.

Yet I relished the opportunity not to give a sh*t for once. I couldn’t get serious about anything. I didn’t care if people borrowed money from me and didn’t pay me back. I no longer worried that if I drank alcohol it would mess up my meditation or not. I didn’t feel compelled to answer the phone or respond to messages.

In other words, I felt free from all my “have-to’s.” My bed was my sanctuary where I slept a lot, following my father’s footsteps post-mortem through all the bardo realms in my dream-state.

And then at one point, I had to turn back toward life. I had to return. I hadn’t died, though my-death-before-dying caused me to be different than before. I reincarnated back into my own life—somehow renewed. And definitely wiser.

In the Vedic teachings, it’s said that when a soul has reached the end of her afterlife karmas, she comes back again through the moon, reaching the earth with the rain that falls and entering into the food that grows in the fields. When the person who becomes your father eats the food, the soul enters the semen that then enters the womb of your mother. You’re born again.

Hence, a continuous feeding frenzy ensues. Death devours you and spits you back out. Then life devours you and spits you back at death.

The planet that devours both the beauty of this world as well as the peace of the afterworld is Venus. As the planet makes a very rare eclipse of the sun on June 5, we’re all being seduced into a new incarnation presumably to reinvent the earth.

Venus’s eclipse of the Sun is rare. It happens every 243 years, with pairs of transits eight years apart. (The last time this occurred was in 1874/1882.) And we’ve already experienced the first of the set on June 8, 2004—which we could say signaled the death of an old paradigm.

An old world died eight years ago and is ready to reincarnate. You died eight years ago and are ready to reincarnate. And just as in 1882 (a time of great technological revolution spearheaded by Nikola Tesla), expect to see a reinvention revolution.

Stage one in your own life.


Editor: Brianna Bemel

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