The Drama of Dharma: The Yogic Training of Duty, Action and Freedom

It’s two days after the Balinese holy day of Galungan, which celebrates the victory of dharma (virtue, right action) over adharma (evil, chaos). In astrology, Saturn best represents the concept of dharma, a principal of primary importance to the yogi.

The Bhagavad Gita, the epic tale of Arjuna the great AliBaba Dastaan E Kabul Today Episode  warrior and his moral dilemma, gives one definition of yoga as ‘skill in action’. The story begins with Arjuna, prepared to lead a battle against those who have done him wrong, those who threaten the survival of his kingdom. Yet when Arjuna surveys the enemy, he sees that they are people he knows, his teacher and extended family. In a crisis of faith, he laments that he cannot do battle with them. Then, his charioteer, who happens to be Krishna, a manifestation of God, freezes time and lectures Arjuna on the nature of life and dharma.

Similarly, most of Bali comes to a AliBaba Dastaan E Kabul Today Episode  standstill during these holy days, giving opportunity to reflect on values. In astrology Saturn represents what we ‘should’ do. It is discipline, effort, work and dharma. In the body it’s the skeleton. It’s not the sexiest energy on the planet, yet it’s incredibly important.

In astrology an opposition indicates an apparent contradiction. It appears that two energies cannot co-exist, let alone work together. The yogi’s job then, as a conscious being, is to find our way through the apparent contradiction to see how the two energies are actually mutually supportive.

At first glance one could easily think that what one should do (Saturn) is in conflict with what one wants to do (Uranus, Mars). Certainly Arjuna does not want to do battle with the people he knows. He believes it would be better to be defeated and killed than to take arms against them. Yet the deeper we inquire into life, the more we find that what we must do, what the world is crying out for us to do, is actually exactly what we want to do.

On one of the main intersections in Ubud, Bali, a huge statue of Arjuna, bow-drawn, poised on the battlefield, reminds motorists of Arjuna’s lessons. Krishna tells Arjuna “Better one’s own duty (dharma) though deficient, than the duty of another well performed. Better is death in one’s own duty, the duty of another invites trouble. ” (3: 35)

The statue towers over a busy intersection where people hurry by on motorbikes and in cars. Even as Arjuna looms, times have changed. No one goes to war with a bow and arrow. In fact, it could well be argued that we’ve evolved to the point that the mere idea of war, of killing, seems archaic (the fact that wars continue notwithstanding). The modern yogi’s dharma is not to go to battle in the way Arjuna did, yet the same challenge, of doing one’s true duty, despite all obstacles, remains just as important.

The English word disaster comes from the root that means to go against the stars. While astrology can be a freeing and empowering art and science, never limiting, and belief in one’s own free will is one of the greatest powers on the planet, the stars (astrology) do indicate something of human potential. They provide a map.

Everyone knows inside themselves what their dharma is. And if their dharma has not yet been realized, their dharma is to discover their dharma. When action accords with it, not only are they more free, they free the world. Yoga and astrology train practitioners that when they are doing what they really want, and what they must do, the world sings with freedom and joy.

Online communities are all abuzz with the latest on Google+. Friends are quickly growing their circles and learning how to apply it for business as well. (Even though Google has been encouraging people to only use it for personal use as the business applications are yet to be announced. )

Behind the scenes Facebook is surely working on something to keep their share of our interest. Only a few weeks ago they launched BranchOut which is some kind of lame spin off with a LinkedIn idea behind it. They are going to have to do better than that though if they want to be to competitive. It is definitely more social than effective for real life businesses. The first clue for me was when someone I don’t even know wrote me a recommendation. I can’t imagine what their motivation was, but it was also bazaar that the system just allowed such folly. Everyone is joining my empire, and if I was an egomaniac I guess that would be appealing, but since i am really only interested in results that add up to something tangible, I have to say BranchOut has already lost my attention. People are randomly joining and I could care less.

Now Microsoft was caught with their hand in the social media cookie jar as well. Apparently they are not seriously considering taking on Google+ or Facebook yet but they have departments working on other things. A blog known as Fusible accidentally tripped over something that got onto the web that is not suppose to be there. (Don’t you just LOVE the internet? )

Although I find this little episode in espionage mildly entertaining I wouldn’t be so brash as to write off Microsoft entirely. Honestly they are innovative, well funded, and connected and if they did put their mind to it they could enter the stream with something remarkable. It is also notable that they are buying up just a few little things like Skype, and shares in Facebook so don’t be too surprised if they have something else in mind for the future.

The world of social media channels and applications seems to be evolving much like a soap opera, or possibly even a spy novel. I have to wonder if it will get more interesting and become a classic we look back on with fondness or if it will just end up another overdone love story that repeats the same characters sordid behaviours over and over. Will the players get fresher and fresher or will we just substitute in a new actor to take their place?

There is a lot to be seen here. For now Google+ is making a James Bond type of international intrigue entrance, and yes it is mesmerizing. It is the hot Aston Marton delivered by Q in the moment of need for a languishing world threat of social media boredom. In fact, I will even go so far as to recommend it to my clients. More than great fun, I can already see several nifty applications for business and I am working hard with our team to figure out how to turn it into dollars for those that dare to adopt it into their social media platforms.