Astrological Yoga Dances
Murshid Samuel L. Lewis
(Sufi Ahmed Murad Chisti)
Introduction to Astrological Yoga Dances
These Dances and Walks are more easily taught to initiates than to others, but they may be used also to bring non-disciples toward the path to God and Enlightenment. They are more easily done to the accompaniment of instruments, percussion rather than keyed ones, but this is a minor point. The musicians also should have some training in either Sufi esotericism or Yoga.
The Sun breath in Indian Yoga is that through the right nostril, in and out. It also appears in a more identical form in Sufic esotericism. The astrological Sun breath begins with a strong inhalation in the right nostril and the exhalation is a natural reaction to it. In the Sufic Jelal breath the exhalation is always directed through the right nostril, equal to the inhalation, but in the astrological Sun breath the exhalation is a reaction to this inhalation, causing some differences, slight or otherwise.
The Sun practices are more easily performed by those who have practiced concentration on the Sun symbol either in class or by themselves alone. It is also advisable but not necessary to have participants practice some form of the Sun breath. This will be of great assistance.
The Sun Walk is one of positivity. It can even be ego-positivity; it must be positivity. It is a “Toward the One” Walk, but not a “United with All” Walk. One proceeds positively as if toward some goal, some objective, outer or inner, with firmness in step and stride, looking neither to the right nor left, but always with a goal or objective in view.
The Sun twirl is always toward the right, positive. The speed being more or less in accord with the playing of the instruments, although it can also be affected by one’s temperament. This will also come out in the horoscope. One’s walk will perfect one’s horoscope, and often one’s horoscope can be used to perfect the walk.
The Moon Walk is responsive, and in this sense can be called negative. The Moon breath is in the left nostril; the emphasis is on exhalation and the inhalation is the natural reaction against this exhalation. The Moon Walk can be more easily done if one listens to musicians. In the absence of musicians it can be more easily done in the presence of a Teacher or leader who is performing a Sun Walk while the disciples perform the Moon Walk. It is responsive but not expressive. It can easily be internalized. It is never emphatic, but its speed may be the same as that of the Sun.
The Moon twirl should be toward the left, excepting in groups where it may be advisable for all to turn in the same direction.
It is needed by people who are over-positive and over-expressive, just as the Sun breath is needed to promote these attributes. At the same time Astrological Yoga should be used to perfect one in his immediate Dharma as it is depicted by the horoscope.
Mercury has been pictured with wings. The Mercury breath may be in through either or both nostrils. It tends to speed up all processes. It is very good for short spurts as sprinters. It is very good for messengers who carry a single errand. It brings the vitality to the surface and if uncontrolled can waste that vitality.
While Mercury operates rapidly it also appears as if on the surface. People using Mercury will either have excellent first impressions or none at all. They are not soliloquizes or deep thinkers. They like to get things done.
Mercury differs from Jupiter in that the latter tends to long strides and Mercury to short ones. But Jupiter, wishing to include everything and everybody can often fail of the goal, while Mercury tends to be successful because it does not have too many goals and so not too many distractions.
The Mercury whirl is excellent for rapid ecstatic achievement. But this ecstasy is not always over-intoxicating; that is, a mental control may remain. It is needed by many types of dancers, artists who wish to work rapidly, creative writers, etc.
The very word Mercury suggests the word market. It is a good breath to have when buying or selling, especially small items.
The Mars Breath is also in the right nostril. It has the forcefulness and fortitude of Jelal without the directiveness. If the Sun represents fire going up, Mars represents lightning going down. Force directed toward the earth. The Greek name for Mars was Ares, which means a plowman, one who uses force on the earth.
The Mars Walk is positive in manifestation, but it is responsive in the sense that it is not directly directive. It is a walk of policemen, soldiers, paraders, and groups. The individual expression is almost at a minimum.
In the Sun Walk the head is held up, in the Mars Walk it is straight ahead or even down. The Sun Walk is often directed from the heart; the Mars Walk from the solar plexus. The term Mars Walk and March are both philologically and philosophically related. In the Sun Walk the energy seems to be going upward as with fire, and in the Mars Walk it will go out through the feet into the ground as if pounding on the earth as a drum.
The Venus Walk is reciprocally the opposite from the Mars Walk. The breath is in the left nostril with a strong inhalation and a reactive exhalation. This gives a spring to the walk as if rising on the balls of the feet. This can also become the walk of femininity. In any case it is often close to Jemal, excepting it has some expressiveness in it. This expressiveness, however, may be egocentric, either toward the person or toward those in her immediate orbit.
The Venus Whirl or twirl should also be toward the left, but not necessarily so. It has also a tendency toward self-admiration and a tendency to be aesthetically delightful. No doubt there is a Venusian element in ballets and in many forms of Dance in contrast to the Martian element in the March. While the two are symmetrically opposite, they can be harmonious and complementary.
Jupiter has been called king of Gods and Men. The Jupiter breath requires a full inhalation, and in its perfect form the inhalation would be in both nostrils and perhaps the exhalation also. It is expansive. It is grandiose. The inhalation can be held for a considerable length of time, and this enables man to draw upon his mental and subtle capacities.
The Jupiter Walk will have long stride, one of self-assurance. The glance will be in all directions, left, right, and ahead. It takes in everything and everybody. It is characteristic of the extreme extrovert.
It is not conducive to thought, silence, self-pity and other aspects of human nature. It can be very considerate, but it also can be superficially so if left to itself.
Thus it can also be the breath and stride of the politician, of the worldly self-seeker. It requires a full breath; it uses the lungs to the capacity, but although it relies on the sight and also all the senses, it does not touch the deeper aspects of personality. It is needed by rulers, administrators, and directors of law enforcement. Also in justice.
The goal of Jupiter is more with “United With All” whereas the Sun is concerned with “Toward the One.”
The Jupiter whirl keeps one in a state of sobriety to control the outside world through control of and from the ego-sense. Jupiter alone one seldom attains intoxication or ecstasy. The velocity depends upon one’s capacity of control.
Saturn Breath has been symbolized as that of the old man. It seems slow and ponderous. It is dominated by exhalation. The magnetism goes into and with exhalation. While it is in general an introvert breath, it is also often aware of the earth and practicality on its own basis.
The Saturn Walk is as if each step were an achievement in itself, that each leg had something to offer the ground. When one controls it he will be patient, persevering, long-suffering, and even though the goal is far off will plod on. In other words, the Saturn Walk is often a plod.
In performing the Saturn Breath there may be a long exhalation and even a break between exhalation and inhalation, exactly the opposite of Jupiter. If one considers the dot and circle as a symbol, Jupiter is always toward and with the circle—expanding; Saturn toward and with the point, the center—contracting.
The Saturn whirl is slow, controlled, very sober, and yet aware. It never entirely lets go, even when in conjunction with the movements of intoxication.
The Uranian influence seems to be quite independent of causality. This is not true; what it is independent of are the operations of ego and human will. It can work as if independent of the influences or rhythms or tones or attunements of the other planets. It sometimes acts as if in opposition, but being in opposition does not mean independent of. It may mean causally attached, for when Uranus acts to the contrary of each of the other seven planets, it is still karmically attached.
The Uranian people tend to breathe with the whole body. In this they seem de-centered. But the awakening and use of the third eye or ajna actually centers them much more completely than those who seem karmically or voluntarily or functionally bound with the influences or attunements of the seven traditional planets.
This means that the Uranian intentionally, karmically, or evolutionarily is expressing a higher consciousness, one not so bound to the denseness of the earth. Still the Uranian is attached to his own karma on the lower level and to his purpose in life on the upper level. Therefore the Uranian Walks and Dances of different people will be different.
Freedom from control of each of the seven planets and each of the four elements will be a different kind of breathing, a different kind of freeing. Therefore the Uranian Walk is functionally tied to an independence movement from the more binding elements or planetary influences. But being free it will not be static. It may reinforce the other influences or it may break them down. At first phase it seems anarchic. At second phase it represents the expression on the earth plane of the Jinn or Gandharva or Upsara. Therefore it can be seen, felt, manifested, exhibited, but not exactly described verbally. It is in the sphere and in the atmosphere. It makes the subtle body active and operative and is to be used for this purpose.
Coupled with devotion, a prayerful attitude, or a sacred phrase, it is most beneficial in bringing to activity the latent powers in man, thus demonstrating one of the fundamental purposes of the Sufi Movement.
The Neptune is a refined and a refining breath. It is in tune with angelic qualities and angelic behavior patterns. Some of these may be hold-overs from childhood. But it is a mistake to assume that the angelic soul is the most advanced, necessarily. The balanced human with capabilities of Uranian and Neptunian functions while still centered in the body, is the most advanced.
The calm refined breath is not necessarily the same as the Neptunian breath. The Neptunian breath will be refined no doubt, and is needed in refinement. In this it is almost like fire, but it is not the Holy Spirit.
The Neptunian breath makes one aware of finer potentials, but this awareness does not mean conscious control. A spiritual person controlling Neptunian Breath and function still retains the refinement of the child but also coalesces it with the wisdom of the universe. The Neptunian Breath, absorbed in ego can even exhibit idiocy or madness, but when it is blended with a spiritual breath, the Holy Spirit, it demonstrates what is said in The Inner Life about the angelic man. Therefore here we must bear in mind what is said in the Christian Book of Revelation about “He who overcometh.”
The Neptunian Breath may go straight up the backbone to the very top of the head. If it can be controlled by heart, man will experience the awakening of his higher potentialities and highest faculties.
Although Neptunians will also not follow an exact pattern, as in the case of the Uranians, they seem to be blended in a cosmic harmony. The lower aspects of this are seen in the way infants greet each other. The higher aspects in the way Dervishes greet each other.
To control the Neptunian influences one must have a refined breath going up the backbone maintaining a rhythm and yet feel as if unbound in potentiality and function. But the Neptunian Breath, once mastered, can be blended or combined with the occult influences of the various planets into a grand unfoldment of each individual’s unlimited potentialities. Therefore it is wise to practice it slowly, even when it is blended with Mercury. But also to keep the refinement above the velocity so that when blended with Saturn, the downward pull is not too great (there are parallels to all these influences and factors in various types of machines used in air traveling). When one feels the Neptunian influence one should also be strongly centered in the heart excepting when one under grace is functioning in accord with the highest Dharma or the manifestation of Baraka.
Generally the walk requires long practice, but this becomes enjoyable and beneficial. And still more enjoyable and beneficial when it can be blended with the rest of the aspects of human personality.