Dharma Reflections

Living Wisdom – Managing Changes

by | Aug 13, 2013 | 0 comments

People often consult me at times of crisis in their lives. Unexpected change knocks them off balance or rocks their otherwise smooth running life styles. It happens to all of us at one time or another. Generally speaking (and there are exceptions) we all want stability, predictability and the ease of the familiar. We all know that we can get more done, be more creative and enjoy life more when things are going according to plan.

But it doesn’t always work that way. Life is designed for change – and for good reason. Most of us have experienced how the change we resisted in the past, turned out in the end to be a blessing. Change is nature’s way of moving us along, helping us to grow, pushing us to be more of who we are and better at what we do. Knowing this doesn’t make the hard work of managing change easier, but if we understand it in this way, it can give us the strength and confidence to face what’s ahead of us.

Answers from wisdom traditions

Wisdom traditions are built on this understanding. You can find it in their ancient stories of the hero who is living happily when one day everything changes, she is tested and if she passes the test she earns a magical reward, a big part of which is self-knowledge and self-mastery. The knowledge of how to successfully meet adversity is found in the symbolism of wisdom tradition’s stories, legends and myths. Their idea is that the heroes of these stories have more consequence in our daily lives than we might think.

You as the hero

TheMythoftheEternalReturn-booksIn his book The Myth of the Eternal Return, the social anthropologist Mircea Eliade tells us that such legends are a sacred history that has the potential to empower us through ritual story telling. Hearing about the trials and successes of great heroes connects us to redemptive and rejuvenating forces that awaken our own latent inner power. You might say that such stories inspire the hero within us and have the potential to help us overcome our own challenges. This kind of magical story telling can reveal undiscovered resources that we can draw on when facing change and uncertainty.

Vedic astrology takes it a step further by telling the hero legend that is specific to the individual, which takes the form of their unique astrological chart. The symbolism in the chart tells the story of our undiscovered strengths and potential. It also describes the changes and challenges we may encounter as heroes in our own journey to self-mastery.

The role of Saturn in creating change

In this story, the symbolism of Saturn plays a prominent role. Every ancient culture viewed Saturn with some trepidation as it was thought to create challenges and sometimes hardship. But it was also seen as bestowing wisdom and playing an important role in helping us grow. Saturn’s influence is described as the crucible that purifies us, that clears away what we’ve outgrown, or that brings out our best by imposing limits, obstacles and pressures. For the uninitiated, Saturn is the monster that the hero has to subdue in her quest for self-mastery. For the hero who has passed the test, – Saturn becomes her indispensible ally.

There are more effective and less effective ways of dealing with Saturn’s ‘influence’. Ancient mystery schools taught that the best way of dealing with the challenge of Saturn is through acceptance, discipline and detachment. Learning to let go is a big part of the lesson of Saturn, which can be difficult for us living in today’s ‘have-more’ material culture. Patience is also required, as is the ability to think longer term to envision a bright horizon ahead despite the struggles of the present moment. It all seems like a lot, but it is manageable if one has insight into Saturn’s symbolism of why change comes about and what’s the wise way of dealing with it.


Later this year I will teach a course that gives you the tools for understanding and managing change.


It is based on your unique Vedic astrological chart and will explain how the deeper symbolism of Saturn relates to you and your life. It also uses the four principles of Dharma outlined in my ‘Being Well Doing Well’ paper. The aim of the course is to help you get a clear perspective on your life so that you can manage change more effectively and with less stress. The course will offer practical tools useful to anyone but also provide personalised guidance on how to successfully deal with relationships, life purpose and personal growth especially during periods of change and uncertainty. The course can be taken at your own pace and includes one-on-one sessions with me over Skype. To be notified when the course is available sign up here.

Many clients of mine who have taken the course over the years have found it helpful and transformative. You can read a few of their comments below. I look forward to sharing more living wisdom with you sometime soon.

“Being well. Doing well.”

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