Planetary Influences Upon The Tattvas
( Originally Published 1908 )
WE have heretofore considered the regular, normal order of the solar and lunar cur-rents of Prâna, and it should be clearly understood by this time that the Tattvic state of these currents is a most important factor in determining the beneficial effects upon the whole physical being of their even, balanced flow in deep, full rhythmical breathing.
The paramount influence affecting this comes from the planets, every one of which establishes its own currents in the organism, determined in degree and kind by the planets' position in the firmament and consequent relation with all other planets. It is the strength of these currents, varying in different people, which distinguishes the individualized, local Prâna from the universal terrestrial Pratt. In this fact we find corroboration of all that astrology claims concerning the planetary influences at the moment of birth upon human life and character.
There are seven descriptions of life-currents, corresponding exactly with the planets of the solar system and influenced by them, which flow around the spinal Chakras, every Chakra being itself, in the activities therein centered, a minature copy of the Zodiac with divisions of influence corresponding to its heavenly signs. Several of these currents, or even all, may be passing along at the same time over the same nerve and around the same Chakra, just as varying electric currents pass simultaneously over the same wire. The multitudinous fibers in a single nerve prevent any " interference." But every Tattva will be more active in certain divisions of the Chakra according to the position in the Zodiac of the planetary influence; for the vibrations of the microcosm correspond with those of the macrocosm.
These seven variations are all to be understood as Tattvic modifications of Prâna, and they would flow on forever and aye within the body as with-out in undisturbed harmony when Nature is serene, and affected by her storms only when in planetary, or Tattvic sympathy with them, but for the erratic working of human free will. As already stated many times, all disease is the result of disturbances in the regular balance of the positive and negative, or solar and lunar, currents of Prana, and of the normal flow of the Tattvas; and human errors, emotions, and deeds are the most common disturbing factors. But the changes thus injected so The Law of the Rhythmic Breath into the localized, or individualized, Prâna prove to us as nothing else can the dynamic power of thought, itself manipulating and disturbing these forces and therefore superior to them; and disclose to the spiritually alive soul glimpses of limitless realms for conquest.
To the materialist these realms of power are a sealed book, and will forever remain beyond his vision. He is the victim of self-limitation ! They are accessible only to the soul-directed will, which, governing thought, chooses the right path and carries consciousness to higher planes of harmonic vibrations. The human instrument is thus tuned to purer and higher influences.
An ocean of thought-vibrations is beating upon our brains every instant, seeking sympathetic vibrations upon which to impinge. This is the secret of the same thought flashing through many brains under the same Tattvic influence at the same time. While this Tattvic (or planetary) influence determines the thoughts and the deeds of the drifters and all in negative — that is, receptive —conditions, OURS IS THE POWER TO CHOOSE THE THOUGHT. The free will that is a peril is also the greatest blessing, putting in our grasp the ever-ready means to overcome physical evils; and the needs of the hour are ethical training in choice, and the education of the will. Evil seeks evil with a marvellous power of accretion and disturbance, but think not for a moment that all good is not even more powerful. The one corresponds to darkness, the other to light; the one is disintegrating, the other upbuilding and renewing. There is in things evil an element of self-destruction, in the operation of which lies the safety of the Uni-verse " (The Perfect Way, p. 189).
Thus the Tattvic state of Prâna in every human being is determined by the position and strength of the various local currents. Color in different plexuses varies from moment to moment as the Tattvic currents change and according to the flow of the Prânic current, the state of which — positive or negative — modifies the prevalent color. The negative current of Prana is said to be pure white, and the positive is tinged. with red,— sometimes described as rose-color. This agrees perfectly with the color of the nerves, the sensory (afferent and posterior), which are the negative ones, being bluish-white; and the motor (efferent and anterior), are reddish-grey. The prevalent Tattva injects its particular hue. When by any act of ours one or more of these Tattvas is abnormally stimulated — as in states of excitement, anger, hatred, jealousy, or depression and manifold worries — it not merely upsets the balance of the prevalent Tattvic currents of the moment, but the disorder is stamped upon the current of the hour; and it passes on into the vast spaces of the Universe to return again and again with varying degrees of force ac-cording as the planets return to positions and relations one to another approximating the conditions at the time of the original disturbance.
All the misery in the world is primarily due to foul magnetisms (which are evil vibrations of tremendously penetrative and compelling power) generated by wrong and impure thoughts and by fear, and constantly fed by the crimes of the depraved and the sins of the weak. The world has grown old trying to punish crime out of existence. But it can never be lessened till the leaven of spiritual thought reaches the masses; and the basic truth, that wholesome, joyful thinking makes healthy, happy people is universally known.
It is possible to gain such power over the Prânic currents through perfect concentration — right thinking held steadfastly to the desired end — and careful attention to breathing correctly and rhythmically, as to put them in any Tattvic state desired; and this frees one from all antagonistic influences, whether hereditary or the chance (?) of birth — that is, planetary conditions at the moment. " Neither the lunar day, nor the constellations, nor the solar day, nor planet, nor god [that is, force]" have power to affect one who knows the Tattvic Law and applies it through habitual practice and right direction of thought and willpower. A human soul is more to God than any planet, and all the creative powers of the Universe work with and for the right.
Throughout the Universe we have the seven-fold division, and that the planets are closely related with this, having each a correspondence with plane and principle and element, with color and with tone, is so manifest to the Occult student as to need no demonstration. We are so wonted to this seven-fold division in some of the common affairs of life as to accept it unquestioningly. Thus, the seven days of the week are named from the planets, not in haphazard fashion, but strictly in accordance with their movements hour by hour.
A cardinal tenet of the earliest known principles of astrology was that every hour and every day is under the direct rule and influence of a planet; and there is no record of a period when the nearer planets, from Saturn to Mercury, were not known and symbolized as in our era. Of these, the sun and moon, supposed by the Egyptians to circle round the earth, were recognized as paramount in influence upon it; and the others were dignified according to the periods of their orbits which were the gauge of their distance.
The planet ruling the first hour names the day, and the succession begins with Saturn, the most distant, and takes the planets in their order, viz.: Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sol, Venus, Mercury, and Luna. Thus, on Saturn's day Jupiter rules the second hour; Mars, the third ; Sol (sun), the fourth; Venus, the fifth; Mercury, the sixth; and Luna, the seventh. Every planet reigns the first hour of its own day, and the eighth, fifteenth, and twenty-second. Three repetitions carry us through the twenty-first hour ; Saturn rules the twenty-second; Jupiter, the twenty-third; and Mars the twenty-fourth, finishing the day. Then Sol rules the first hour of the succeeding day, which is Sun-day; called by the Romans Dies Dominica, or Lord's Day,— the day of the Lord Sun. Some authorities count from the rising of the sun; but a very old work, Arcandum's Astrology, reckons this planetary rule of hours from midnight which agrees with the modern reckoning of time.
The orderly repetition brings Luna — the moon — in as ruler of the next day, hence, Monday; Mars, (French, Mardi), Tuesday; Mercury, Wednesday; Jupiter, (Saxon, Thor), Thursday; and Venus (Saxon, Frea), Friday. All of the Latin tongues preserve in the names for the days of the week their planetary origin; but the Saxon derivation of English nomenclature has in ours obscured it in part.
All possibility that chance or pure arbitrary selection had any part in thus naming the days seems eliminated when we consider the double harmony ruling the order. The succession of the planets is not only from the slowest, Saturn, to the swiftest, the moon; but also in the exact order of their distance from the earth, from the most remote to the nearest. In matters astrological it is this regular succession of the planets, hour by hour, that determines fortunate planetary hours for various acts and undertakings. They are not, however, the same for all persons, being modified in effect by the characteristics established at the nativity.
It is interesting while on the subject, and piles up the authority for thus naming the days of the week and their order as we know them, to mention that the seven Hebrew words for the first seven cardinal numbers are all formed of one syllable that signifies a star (or fire or light) and another ex-pressing its quality, and they follow strictly the above order, beginning with Sunday as the first day of the week. This is conclusive evidence that at the earliest formation of that language the relation between the planets and the days of the week was recognized as a basic fact in nature. The characteristic influences of the several planets thus expressed in the Hebrew names agree perfectly with the attributes still commonly assigned them; and as they are important in our further study I give them here with the original uncorrupted form of the Hebrew numbers :
1. Ash-shed; Sol, all-bountiful fire.
3. Ash-lesh; Mars, star of flame.
4. Ar-rabo; Mercury, star of activity.
5. Chem-ash; Jupiter, star of warmth, star of joy.
6. Ash-ish; Venus, star of existence.
7. Ash-shebo; Saturn, star of old age, and signifying also the end and the beginning.
In further consideration of planetary influences, there seem to be convincing reasons for observing scrupulously this natural order of the planets in time and space,— the only one which satisfies my mind as in harmony with the Tattvic Law. Con-fronted with the problem of harmonizing these, it was for a time bewildering to find how many tables of planetary correspondencies with color, number, metals, elements, and days had been devised in which the natural sequence of the planets is constantly violated, and the days of the week are thrown into utter confusion ; Monday following Tuesday, and Saturday, Wednesday. There is but one solitary anchor of agreement upon these planetary correspondencies between the various tables, religious, Occult, astrological, and astronomical,— with but one exception, to my knowledge, all connect Mars with fire, heat and passion, and the strife that leads to armed contest; hence, he was called the god of war. We shall weigh the authority of some of these tables when we study in their turn color and number in greater detail.
Our immediate interest now is with the Tattvic correspondencies which subject their activities — that is, their vibrations — in physical organisms to planetary influences.
The Shivâgama, which is the Sanskrit authority for most of our knowledge concerning the Tattvic Law, gives two sets of Tattvic values or correspondencies for the planets, which at the outset is bewildering and unsatisfactory. There is but the slightest agreement between the two; and upon examination the logical mind rejects both as equally arbitrary and capricious, and seeks for a satisfactory hypothesis upon which to base the law of correspondencies.
We ask ourselves : How do the planets differ one from another in elementary substances, and how are the Tattvas differentiated? In the evolution of the latter (see Chapter V) we know that Akâsha — the bowl in which all are mixed — is the most sublimated and that they increase in density as they descend to Prithivi, the activities of which tend to cohesiveness and compactness. This brings us immediately to the question : Are not the planets differentiated in the same way, and is not their density determined in like manner, or by the variation in the proportions of the Tattvas? If so, which is the most ethereal?
Fortunately modern science has arrived at very definite conclusions upon this subject of the density of the planets,— a triumph of mathematics, that wonderful science on the wings of which the most severely materialistic mind fares forth into the in-visible and brings back irrefutable data. When we group the planets in the astronomical order of their density; we find that it increases in an almost regular progression from Saturn to Mercury, which harmonizes perfectly in sequence with the age-honored order of the hour-by-hour rule; that is, from the most distant to the nearest. The re-mote planets Uranus (Herschel) and Neptune (pronounced by Occultists to be outside our system) do not come within the relations we are considering. They were unknown and invisible to the ancient world. Both discovered within the last century and a quarter (1781-1846, respectively), their influence upon earth life as yet is very slight, but they are heralds of coming changes.
Dropping out of this planetary sequence, temporarily, during our search for Tattvic correspondencies, the sun and moon, lords respectively of the positive and negative currents of Prana, we are reminded that the earth upon which we live is also a planet and has its place in this progression of density; and we find it between Venus and Mercury. But in her orbital distance from the sun, the earth's place in the sequence is between Venus and Mars. Remember this, for it will be found to explain a seeming Tattvic irregularity.
I do not expect those readers who have merely read these lessons so far, and have neither practiced nor studied, therefore do not know one Tattve from another nor recall their distinguishing characteristics, to grasp the significance of the above established facts. It is not mere phenomena we are seeking but absolute truth. And those who are beginning to know the separate Tattvas by their fixed activities and relations and invariable effects must already understand their logical correspondencies with the planets. Here is the opportunity to do some serious thinking. All interested students should meditate upon the subject and see how near they can come to a correct solution of the problem before reading the next chapter.
It is necessary to give extreme emphasis to the fact that these lessons are neither mere speculations nor simply disclosures of curious mysteries. They are the first attempt to explain, in so practical a manner as to apply to every human need, the basic truths, as far as human intelligence has yet unravelled them, concerning the vital force in human organisms. And their value is that they teach a thoroughly scientific method of personal training to obtain control of body and mind, and make them the perfect vehicles for the soul's expression that the Creator intended. Only by means of constant and regular practice of the breathing exercises and of concentration can these benefits be gained. In concentration the mind is gradually attuned to those Kosmic influences which in their very nature are antagonistic to the evil material inclinations that are hazards to physical health and check our evolutionary progress.
It is through the ability to control Prana and center it wherever we desire that we build the lad-der to perfect centralization; a state of pure con-centration which is lofty aspiration and, releasing the soul from its physical chains, places it upon its own throne, and discloses to it the realms of know-ledge and power to which it has access.