A Jyotisha Journey
[This essay won the second place prize for our 2020 holiday essay contest.]
I am breathing in and I am breathing out. As sure as the sun does rise, I am as sure that the sun sets. I am breathing out. I am breathing in. The moon also rises, and just as it does, the moon also sets. I am breathing. I am still breathing, and all the bodies that rise with life, they will all also set in their time and find death.
Oh twenty-twenty, what can be said? How did I see you? Was it as perfectly as vision can be given? From the isolation of doors shut, families and loved ones separated, with gloves and masks on, I saw the political colors blazing as gateways to change flew open. I found comfort in meditation and mind dazing stares at a candle. It was like the light, which makes darkness known, would give me the reasons why the cosmos manifests in all the ways that have been shown.
Twenty-twenty, it gave me online global communities that raised me and grew me in new ways. Sparks of learning, very deep learning came to illuminate me. The light in the darkness of watching the stars, reading ancient observations, practices, and philosophies, they created in me a feeling of connections that were greater from a far. I saw so many yogas leading to strong times and weak times. Saturn and Jupiter, Mars, Mercury and Venus going through elaborate and difficult direction switches. So many traveling bodies through the knots, playing in the binds, bodies close together but not like bodies that are close together in loves kisses. How my lips miss kisses and my arms miss holding.
So I explored, I am not my body, I am not my molding, but who am I? Watching, I kept the pieces moving on a board, some quickly passing where they had been when I was born. In some places I saw pieces amassed and like bodies attract and repel, my relationships in this world also rose and fell. Sometimes we are moving forwards, sometimes almost standing still, progression and regression and even moments of peacefulness did fill me. Moments, brief moments, showing me the abstract and non-linear motions of time. In a blink of an eye I could have actually missed it.
And like our father, whose will be done on earth as it is in heaven, the motion of great bodies follow his laws. Even the dark and bodies without body did change at his command, and with it mood without form transferred darkness to different parts of the land. I did not anticipate all the collisions in the visions of the future and the past, but I did and will continue to watch them. Weaving stories and meanings from threads that may be but illusions, not real until I can see them, not known until their stories told. I am not my body. I am not even my mind. I do however want to know so I will continue breathing. Breathing in and breathing out, I will be.
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Renay Oshop - teacher, searcher, researcher, immerser, rejoicer, enjoying the interstices between Twitter, Facebook, and journals.