This blog celebrates Earth Day by explaining the worldview shift necessary to live in harmony with Mother Earth and ourselves. Please share it with all your e-mail lists and Facebook friends. Let’s make an impact and go viral!
Values are a major theme of the Taurus archetype. Taurus expands by redefining what it values. A profound reorientation of our values can happen only when we install a new attitude in our minds and hearts. At this time, a fundamental worldview shift is required because for a very long time (way too long!) the patriarchal paradigm has served as the ideological foundation for our social, economic, political, relationship, and spiritual systems.
First, I will discuss how traditional spiritual paths created from a transcendental mindset determine what we value and devalue. Then I will explain how a more inclusive worldview can form the foundation for a shift in how value and we relate to ourselves, life, and Mother Earth.
Upper Chakra Transcendental Path
The transcendental upper chakra spiritual paths – designed for men by men – seek to transcend all expressions of the feminine — our bodies, emotions, feelings, the human experience, women, and Mother Earth. The lower chakras are defined only in their negative undeveloped expressions. Positive expressions, beneficial faculties, and absolutely essential qualities of our humanness have been ignored and depreciated.
The infamous list condemning the lower chakras of ‘lust, greed, pride, and attachment’ is never accompanied by a list of the higher expressions and gifts that can be awakened by cultivating and developing how we express the primal energies of the earth, water, and fire elements of the first three chakras.
Lust can obviously lead to perverted and abusive sexuality. But how about optimizing the spiritual expressions of our sexuality that open the heart to higher love?
Anger depletes our vitality and wastes our fire energy in destructive ways. We can, however, use our fire energy and free will creatively and productively.
Greed doesn’t respect the abundance of nature or contribute to building an equalitarian global society. How about being ‘excessively’ grateful for and acknowledge the generosity of Mother Earth and wisely use and share her abundant resources?
Pride expressed as egomaniac boasting is obviously not an optimal expression of our need for self-worth. But self-esteem and self-confidence are the foundations for self-love.
Attachment can keep us weighted down to things, relationships, and ideas that constrain our freedom. But is it really a sin to like to live a comfortable life? Where does this belief come from?
The above negative expressions are a result of the male dominate paradigm, which leads to
deception, domination, and exploitation of the feminine — our bodies, women, and Mother Earth.
Transcendent spiritual paths make us
- feel bad about being human,
- guilty about having desires, and
- wrong for enjoying our bodies, sexuality, and being alive!
Need for a Shift in Worldviews
The transcendental male/mind paradigm has created serious dysfunctions both personally and collectively. Exploitation of all expressions of the feminine has been made possible because we have been so mentally preoccupied and disconnected from our bodies and the Earth that we haven’t been able to realistically compute value, limits, and a healthy relationship between humans and the Earth. The patriarchal system tries to dominate, exploit, manipulate, and control what we don’t understand, fear, and fail to appreciate. But when we abuse half of reality, we create suffering for everyone.
Gradually we have become aware of the fact that the male/mind ‘upper chakra good, lower chakra bad’ paradigm does not accord with reality and in fact has produced disastrous results. This worldview has been increasingly challenged and exposed, but we have reached a tipping point. The source of our global problems has been diagnosed. We must shift our worldview and consciousness to survive.
Honoring the Feminine/Flowing Polarity
The lower chakras express the female, feeling polarity of our soul. *(1)They cannot be ignored, denigrated, and abused without serious consequences personally (in both men and women) and collectively (politically, economically, and socially.) A fundamental shift in the human psyche is required to upgrade how we experience the feminine and our lower chakras.
A realistic and workable worldview integrates both polarities and does not condemn, judge as bad or of less worth, ignore, or try to shut down the feminine polarity of our soul. It accepts it as part of the human design in both men and women. And it recognizes that the interactive dance between the feminine/flowing and the masculine/stable energies is the fundamental dynamic of universal reality. An integrative approach understands the necessity of shifting from degrading and exploiting all expressions of the feminine to honoring, taking care of, and enjoying her gifts.
We have existed so long under the spell of the patriarchy that we fail to recognize or question the perversions that it has created. For example, we beat ourselves up with judgment, shame, and guilt, and consider that normal because we believe that something is matter with us and we aren’t lovable. In so many ways, (including the food we put in our body) we are aggressive and disrespectful of our body and feelings.
Integration instead of Abuse
Here is a spiritual example of how we abuse our bodies. Some male/mind spiritual paths teach us that we should be able to sit still long hours and not move while meditating – just ignore (transcend) the physical pain. Unless we go out of our body and escape into our mind, we notice that physical pain distracts us from quieting our mind and attaining inner peace.
Integrative paths recognize that our spiritual practice must honor both polarities. Yes, the goal for the male/mind polarity is to reach a point of stillness. But ‘still’ equals ‘stuck’ for our female/flowing polarity. To be satisfied and tap into the powers and resources of the flowing polarity, the energy in our physical and emotional bodies must overcome the tendency to be stuck because they are traumatized with fear. The flowing polarity can be released from debilitating fear through loving acceptance and relaxation, which allows it to flow in rhythmic movement.
We experience that flowing movement is natural and pleasurable, not to be avoided and shunned. And supportive physical exercise is necessary to prepare the body for sitting meditation. With pranayama and Kundalini Yoga we strengthen our nervous system to be able to hold and contain the higher love frequencies produced as we awaken the upper chakras.
Evolution of Consciousness to an Integrative Approach
Both the transcendental and the integrative approaches recognize the need to raise our frequency out of fear into love. But the transcendental path leaves out the female polarity and lower chakras. The integrative approach includes both polarities and all the chakras. It recognizes that in the lower fear vibrations the polarities sabotage each other. The flow shuts down and gets frustrated and angry. The stable mind becomes rigid and dogmatic (instead of enlightened) and uses fear to try to control and dominate our feelings and emotions.
The integrative path is about discovering how the two polarities of our soul can work together and support each other. Both polarities have to operate in their higher expressions to find balance, harmony, and integration. This requires awakening of consciousness in all our chakras.
To evolve and upgrade how we express the moving feminine energies, our emotions, the elements, and the lower chakras, expanded consciousness is required. We awaken consciousness in our upper chakras and neutral mind (male/stable polarity). In awakened consciousness we can perceive and relate to the higher expressions of the lower chakras. Without the partner of consciousness, feelings and emotions – the female/flowing polarity – feels abandoned and unloved and remains controlled by subconscious fear and anger programming.
Redefining Value with the Integrative Approach
The transcendental approach gives value exclusively to the upper chakras and to the experiences that we cultivate as we awaken the light in our mind. The integrative approach requires taking the first three chakras into account in determining what we desire and value and the experiences that we cultivate.
At the first chakra, we don’t give up our desire for a comfortable life. (Who really enjoys lack and deprivation of our basic need for food, clean water, and shelter?) But our attitude toward what we have shifts from wanting more than we really need to appreciating what we have. When our basic needs are satisfied, physical security gives us a sense of freedom. We can escape from the consumer materialistic trap and not be burdened down with excessive possessions.
The earth element is about wisely using physical resources and enjoying their blessings. The earth element enjoys using practical wisdom to be productive. It derives value from uncovering latent potential and carefully manifesting these resources into tangible assets. Earth likes to get things done and takes action to achieve practical goals. It gains satisfaction through patient incremental growth which yields long-term economic security. Wealth is defined by worth and quality over quantity. The first three chakras work together the achieve the above.
Earth enjoys the abundance that satisfies material needs and gives one the liberty to enjoy living in the present without fear. Earth derives deep satisfaction from comfort and physical pleasure and beauty. Through the subtle senses it experiences the sensual pleasure that makes it possible to connect with and appreciate the gift of our body and our home Mother Earth.
Earth likes, evolves, and expands by using its creative and manifesting powers to experience that it can provide for itself. Instinctively we know that consolidation and self-sufficiency in the physical world are the foundation for moving up the chakras. Ultimately earth seeks to experience the in-the-body pleasure of embodying the abundance of Light from the awakened upper chakras. Our body vehicle makes it possible to contain Light/Spirit and to share the higher vibrations of Love with the Earth and the world. In the integrative paths, we work with our lower chakras to prepare our body for this ultimate human experience of spiritualizing matter.
How Long Does It Take?
Both the transcendental and the integrative paths take time, effort, discipline, and patience to attain their goals. I used to wonder why it is taking me so long to awake up. I became aware of the answer as I began to understand the nature of the integrative spiritual path. I realized that awakening the mind and preparing the body to hold the Light of consciousness is a long incremental process.
I have noticed a consistent pattern teaching the two polarities. Finding neutral and peace in the upper chakras is invariably easier than dealing with the issues that arise when we try to relax into the flow of with the lower chakras. Because it is easier to have glimpses of Light in the mind, the transcendental path is alluring. But without shutting down the lower chakras and defying our humanness, we can’t get very far in being able to maintain ‘enlightened’ consciousness. Thus we have to simultaneously deal with all the issues of our lower chakras and the challenges of being human to attain our goals of an awakened mind and a body capable of being a vehicle of Light.
The good news is that with the powerful technology of Kundalini Yoga and Meditation we can experience and enjoy baby steps every day.
The Satisfaction of Financial Integrity
And now for a very practical Taurus/Scorpio earth element story. Recently I was talking to a Scorpio man who expressed how good he felt getting his money situation in order. He and his Taurus wife bought the book Money Makeover and are following the guidelines to get a realistic picture of their finances. He said it was a great relief to have everything spelled out so they could see what comes in and what goes out and finally make conscious decisions about how they spend their money. He said they used to be unconscious about where their money went and just counted (hope/fantasy) on making more money to cover the bills and stop accruing more debt. They have benefited by eliminating much stress and gaining greater peace of mind.
‘Of course,’ say those who have an Excel spread sheet that accounts for every penny earned and spent. But for many others, making the effort to create this kind of grounded accountability can sound like a challenging, but nevertheless a very wise idea. For whoever likes this idea, the Sun in earthy Taurus is a very good time to put our finances in order.
The air, water, and fire signs have very different ideas about what feels good and what helps us grow and evolve. But the earth signs get a buzz out of being practical, efficient, and responsible money and resource wise. They experience deep satisfaction as their physical reality changes through their own efforts.
P.S. If ‘prosperity meditations’ haven’t produced the results you wish for yet, you might consider ways to be more grounded in relationship to your finances, your body, physical reality, and Mother Earth.
*(1) The nature and powers of the two universal polarities and the elements are discussed in detail in my book The Inner Art of Love.
See Kundalini Yoga Blog Feeling Good in Our Body