Submitted by Ischa Behary •
The great yogi and teacher, Paramahansa Yogananda, has written:
The mind of man is subject to change and limitation, but Cosmic Consciousness is free from all restrictions and is never involved in experiences of duality…life and death, disease and health, fleeting sorrow and fleeting joy, and so on. In the Divine Mind, an unchangeable perception is ever present.
The above concept is so beautifully captured in the following ancient Sanskrit Proverb, which emphasizes very subtly the importance of living and being totally immersed in the present moment, for in that moment is the expression of all life, all reality, all splendor!
The founder of Sunburst, Norman Paulsen, was born during Aquarius. His birthday is February 3. Aquarius is the Sun sign for January 20 to February 18. It is called “the Water Bearer” because, as a friend to all, it pours forth the humanitarian spirit.
Inventive and unique in nature, Aquarius is a Fixed Air Sign. It is steadfast in its ideas—fixed in that it never gives up on what it believes is right. When Norm Paulsen introduced the concept of associating virtues with zodiac signs, he attributed Charity to Aquarius.
The planet associated with this sign is the rather eccentric Uranus. In Sunburst’s early days one of Norm’s favorite quotes was from a 1967 music album called “The Zodiac,” by Mort Garson. “In the friendly opal light of Uranus, all men can blend yet still be what they are.”
We are all children of the same Divine Mother and Father. Norm urged us to see that Divine light of Spirit in each other. That is the true charity by which we can uplift friends, family and all of humanity.
“The Zodiac, Aquarius” complete lyrics:
Four, four hundred or four thousand dreams may decay into indigo dust that covers Aquarius and still the voice will say ‘love’
Go, be, but forget no one
Weak, strong – all belong
In the friendly opal light of Uranus all men can blend yet still be what they are.
We each should be asking ourselves, “How can I get off to a good start this year? …this month …this week …today? Or, we may be wondering how to accomplish something that might seem daunting—beyond our abilities. What to do first?
If you know that your goal is positive, worthwhile, and helpful to humanity and the planet in some way, then Go for it! Your first step should be to fully visualize, or conceptualize your goal. Sunburst’s founder, Norman Paulsen, usually asked for spiritual direction before beginning any undertaking. This could have resulted in a quick Go for it! during meditation, or the need for repeated requests for direction over many months. Timing is everything, and perhaps it wasn’t time to act yet.
When we’re simply thinking of “How can I get off to a good start today,” or “What should I focus on today?” we can usually get a quick answer. Hopefully we meditate each morning and feel inspired. Beyond that, Paramahansa Yogananda stated that we were given rational minds to help us solve problems, and function successfully on this dimension. Give yourself some time to think through what needs to take place.
Setting clear intentions can make a world of difference. Sometimes we add to this a prayer asking for help in accomplishing our goal. If we’re still uncertain that the direction we are about to take is the best one, asking for Divine clarity is a good idea. Sometimes, we haven’t gotten clear direction. Sometimes Spirit wants us to make a decision ourselves—to commit to an action by our own volition. If we are truly wanting to serve the Divine plan, we move forward with a heart that is open to changing course, if it’s needed. Trust that such a needed change will become obvious very quickly.
Sunburst Sanctuary facilitates our getting off to a good weekly start every Sunday. Each New Year finds Sunburst offering a blessing ceremony for our intentions into that year. On January 4th, Saturday evening, we gathered in the Sanctuary Lodge for a fire/seed ceremony. At this event, accompanied by inspired music, we symbolically cast what did not serve us into the fire, and set free our positive aspirations into higher realms. It was a beautiful ceremony amidst friends, old and new, reminding us of our unity with all the love and sweetness within and behind this creation.
Throughout the year, Sunburst offers encouragement for twelve months of conscious living. Each sign of the zodiac offers the discovery of our own “star power,” strengths that we might not know we have. As we each realize the power of our natural divine self, we develop our Divine personality. The result is greater joy and meaning in our lives, as well as making the world a better place.
We end and begin the year in the midst of the sign of “Temperance.” This is Capricorn’s gift, as we celebrate while the Sun transits this zodiacal sign (Dec. 22, 2019 to Jan. 19, 2020). It’s our challenge to be temperate amidst holiday reveling, spending, and consuming. It’s not too late—you can resolve to embrace temperance the rest of this year, and you’ll be thankful you did.
Capricorn is an astrological Cardinal Earth Sign. “Cardinal” means it’s a sign of “doing—active.” “Earth” is the practical, grounded side of this energy. Now the challenge is not to be so caught up in the physical that we neglect the spiritual aspect of this time of year. It’s a wonderful time to “actively” find deep peace within, just as nature is engaged in doing in the Northern Hemisphere. Our energies gather, possibly discovering a more focused, and worthwhile purpose in our lives. Meditation allows our intuition to point out our best direction forward.
Paramahansa Yogananda was born in the month of Capricorn, on January 5th, 1893.
Sunburst celebrates every Capricorn with a Kriya Yoga retreat. It’s a beautiful opportunity to get in touch with your true self, the perfect spirit within your being. We celebrate with some hours of silence, refresh our meditation practice, learn new techniques for spiritual growth, and find that “reset button” to get our new year off to a start full of promise—with worthwhile and appropriate personal goals. Sunburst is also all about new friendships, love, and the kind of spiritual support we each need in a challenging world. Maybe you’ll tune in each month to “Be a Star.”