Dharma, or life purpose. It’s a loaded word. And yet it’s tossed around a lot these days. The dharma of the past is much different than the dharma of today. Dharma has essentially been lost in our Western-centric culture, which is undoubtedly the source of much discord and confusion.
If we are miserable and not experiencing joy from our work, then we are not doing our dharma. Dharma is most certainly living our purpose, our family’s purpose, the shakti of our lineage. It is coming forth from us, to serve the world in some capacity.
To the ancient Vedic civilizations, dharma was much more clearly defined. Occupations were passed from generation to generation and there wasn’t much say in the matter. Karmically, individuals surrendered to the reality that they chose that incarnation as a way to learn, through that specific family dharma.
I think it’s similar today, though we just aren’t aware of the dharma, and that confusion alone is the source of the suffering, the maya (illusion) of this life.
If you’re like me, your life purpose, your dharma, has perplexed and plagued you.
In fact, it wasn’t too long ago that I wondered why I was struggling to find my dharmic path, or if I ever would find it. My purpose for being alive, has been a life long quest; for the majority of my life it has been a driving force for me. At the same time, it has been a source of angst, agitation, fear, and quandary, not to mention forcing me to deeply surrender.
My sensitivity in physical, mental and emotional bodies has forced me to live life very differently than the rest of the world, adding to my angst, turmoil and depression.
Will I ever have the energy to live my purpose? Can I keep up with the demands of a full time job? How can I impact the world, when I need so much TLC and rest?
My primary resource for getting insights into my life path these days is jyotish, or vedic (eastern) astrology.
In the past, I went from jyotishi to jyotishi seeking their advice and their counsel. They all said different things. Some said writing would be “good”, others said artist (but not dance!), I even had one jyotishi tell me that I could be a lawyer! And while many of these pieces fit me and my chart in some capacity, they don’t nail it. And they certainly didn’t provide the clarity I was seeking so desperately.
It wasn’t until I committed myself to studying my own chart that the answers started to reveal themselves.
This is the primary reason I strongly advise my clients to study their own charts. It is a tool of self development, spiritual awakening and awareness of the individual self in relation to the world.
Growing in Dharmic Wisdom
The chart is an unfolding map. As you learn and grow, more and more pieces of information appear and emerge from the chart, more pieces make sense and more trust can be had. I see it as reciprocal, looping, and spiraling. It’s a tool for deeper listening and being honest and straightforward with ourselves, if we choose to be. And when we need a nudge of awakening, it can be helpful to get a trustworthy outside view from a jyotishi as well.
My clients are like me in that their dharmas are entirely unique. They are the first to create their unique synergy of modalities and use them together. They are the first in their family certainly, and that combined with a society that doesn’t have a name or a label for one’s occupation, can be discouraging or even derailing.
I also know from experience that many beings are on the planet right now to restore their family dharma.
What has been lost for generations is now re-emerging through a special family member, guided by the ancestors, yet shrouded in mystery, challenges and much discouragement simultaneously. It is certainly my story and one that I recognize in almost every client that comes to me. I believe this to be part of my dharma as well- to help others restore their family’s lineage to its original order.
We are the artists, musicians, teachers (gurus), healers and maintainers of the spiritual and the sacred.
Using Your Map
Studying your jyotish chart is essential for understanding your dharma.
First, look at the ninth house, the house of dharma. In the jyotish chart, it is very important for identifying many parts of the life purpose. This is where you begin your investigation. The ninth house is the house of the guru, the teacher, how wisdom comes to you, what type of wisdom and knowledge come, and how or if you receive it.
Next look at the tenth house. This is the most external of the twelve houses. It is the house of career, one’s offering to the world. From the tenth house we can tell what types of offerings are given and in what capacity we give them. We can further refine the dharma in this way.
The other houses that are important in order to refine the offerings of a person’s path are the fifth house and the sixth. The fifth house correlates to our creative energy and potential. This is why it is connected to children, but also our passion. It is also the house connected to students and clients. The sixth house is the house of both healing and being healed. It will be a predominant player in the chart of someone whose life purpose has to do with healing and helping others; being in service essentially. The 7th house as well can be a part of the dharmic picture. This house of ‘relationships’ will further refine who you are working with, considered the ‘other’ and your mirror.
Finally, the third house is vital for our courage and our ability to move forward in life with action steps. The third house can be a valuable resource for understanding one’s creative gifts.
If you’re wondering about money (we all need it!) look to the second house. This is the house of comfort and nourishment (literally the body part is mouth and throat) as well as wealth. Money is a source of comfort after all.
The interaction of these houses, the planets involved, the nakshatras enlivened, and the dance of all these elements with the overall chart, is all part of your dharmic story.
The nakshatras offer further refinement based on the meaning of the nakshatra, the deity involved, and the planetary ruler of the nakshatra. These are essential details for fine tuning the dharmic story and the unique attributes of your life purpose.
Study your chart and grow in the wisdom that is you!
Jyotish has layer upon layer upon layer that slowly reveal themselves, so remember this is a slow process and one that is rooted in gnana (knowledge and wisdom).
The unique dharmic wisdom of your life path is carefully folded into the map of your jyotish chart. With slow and steady steps of wisdom and patience, your path will begin to unfold.