Fatal Attractions: Cycles of Pain and the Karmic Choices we Make



You were sacrificed before. Maybe many times.
Your soul got used to it, Maybe you thought it was ´normal´.
You´re trying to do it again.

Short, but an answer that has deep resonance, especially for those who resonate with the archetype of the sacrificial virgin / priestess. Unpack it a little more, and you find your own reasons.

In this context, ´normal´ doesn´t mean good, bad, desirable, healthy, unhealthy, hateable – it just means that you got used to a certain vibration. And internalized it. Perhaps it´s a fixation to break through it, perhaps it´s a conviction that it´s true, or good. Perhaps it´s a need to understand it.

Whatever it is, it´s an attachment to a particular experience. And the soul attracts people, events and opportunities to once again re-live it.

Truly, it´s an argument you can make for any type of karmic lesson that keeps appearing in life. Sometimes it may seem like an unlucky streak ´this always happens to me´ .. i always end up with that kind of person ´, or really, anything that you just find yourself pulled towards without reason or explanation, as though by magic. Sometimes it´s a nice kind of pull, but more often than not – it tends to reflect what we see as our wounds, weaknesses, vulnerabilities.

Karmic attachments are things that exert a powerful pull on our psyches as we seek to understand the why and wherefores behind them. We subconsciously choose these experiences in a bid to gain a more complete experience. Ultimately, to transcend the need to experience it entirely (so the theory says).

These choices we make, which we mystify as ´karma´ , are buried in the subconscious. That doesn´t mean they are beyond our ability to understand and ultimately move past.

It´s time to stop mystifying and romanticizing choices that lead us unto paths of pain as being somehow fated, destined and/or sacred. Or simply things that we cannot change in ourselves.

Whether it´s the past-life trauma of being sacrificed or persecuted, or wounds that surround any kind of recurring lesson surrounding pain – taking a step back to understand why you may be making those choices does help. It stops you from feeling like the Universe hates you, or as though you are some pawn of Fate, moving without your own free will.

For me, at least, that has been one of the deeper realizations of my life thus far. At the day-to-day level, it has helped me to question those things which I felt drawn to, like a moth to a flame – as though I were being drawn into something I could not (ought not) question, or walk away from.

And many of the choices I have made, from taking that moment to detach – from realizing that I had a choice to let this energy into my space, or not – have led to healthier life choices. Ones that have made me feel more fulfilled as a woman and a spiritualist.

There are of course, inexplicably beautiful and powerful moments in which our souls attune to experiences of the Sublime. Those are, for me at least, qualitatively different from the karmic attractions that lead on down repetitive cycles of wounding, grief and a sense of limitation we normally associate with ´spiritual karma´.

I suspect we will see more of the former and less of the latter the moment we realize the power of our own choices in co-creating all that we experience, with whatever it is we consider the Essence of the Sacred.

Bairavee Balasubramaniam
The Sky Priestess

Image Information: Cornelia, the Vestal Virgin, entombed alive surrounded by bones in the dungeon. Line engraving by G. Machetti after B. Pinelli – See page for author [CC BY 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Post © Bairavee Balasubramaniam, 2016. All rights reserved.

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The Power of Wounds, Empty Spaces, and the Sacred Darkness.


We talk about turning the light on to wash away the darkness, we talk about healing the wounds and becoming whole again. In my experience of life, I find these to be statements that can soothe, but which can equally detract us from experiencing truly potent aspects of our being.

Wounds are powerful. They have the capacity to rip open our perceived walls and boundaries, and to leave us wholly vulnerable, in surrender to whatever it is we consider Sacred … or to be held captive at the mercy of our deepest fears. This is why we alternate between venerating the wound, and equally, trying to ´fill it with light´.

Wounds leave holes in you at times. And for the longest time I thought that my dark spaces were things that I needed to fill so they would be healthy, fine, glowing, full of life and love … radiant once more. I judged them by the rhetoric I knew, and for the longest time, I hated those empty spaces.

Nowadays, whilst I wouldn´t accept something boring a hole into me by force, I do see the hollowed out caverns within in a different light. Rather than seeing them as halls of emptiness, they look to me to be a sacred chamber of sorts. An inner temple. Someplace where I can sit, rest, and connect deeply with The Dark Mother, my archetypal understanding of the Sacred Darkness.

Whilst I would not say I lack wounds, or flaws – my relationship with them has indeed shifted. I accept them for what they are, and the spaces they have created. What I once thought was a loss, I now see as a space for pure connection and deep transformation.

It is a sense of appreciation for what was, but equally a more detached state of being. I do not need to re-live those wounds, or identify with them (a.k.a. the woundology paradigm), or to find people who will tear open the same spaces.

Finally, I feel that I am ready for the work I came to do. On March 21, I will be holding a workshop in Glastonbury, UK that specifically addressess the Sacred Space of Darkness and how we reach it through a channel of Love, and yes, Detachment. More on that soon.

Blessings to All,

Bairavee Balasubramaniam
The Sky Priestess

Image: Life and Death Intermingled.jpg By NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Wisconsin [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Post © Bairavee Balasubramaniam, 2016. All rights reserved.
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Blessings everyone! At 4:47 am UTC, 22-12-15, the Sun will shift into Capricorn, marking the start of a new chapter on the turn of the astrological wheel. The celebrations of solstices and equinoxes align with different turnings, marking the changes of the seasons, significant shifts in the flow of energy, and of course, the Sun’s entry into the Cardinal Signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn). The December solstice (Winter in the Northern Hemisphere, Summer in the Southern Hemisphere) represents a pivotal moment in the shift of the balance, between day and night, between light and darkness (both of which are sacred). This is, given your hemisphere, either the day of the longest night / shortest day (or vice versa).

Astrologically speaking, there are a few exact alignments whose transformative energies add texture and flavour to the already-intense energy of the Solstice. Many of them relate to healing the wounds of disconnection between the masculine and feminine, much of which stems from violation, neglect or other form. Those of you working through the modality of ritual, ceremony, or other forms of spiritual healing may want to focus on these themes as they can yield tremendous energetic shifts in this window of time. Whilst you can, of course, focus on different things to honor the Solstice, these may be themes to consider including in your celebrations/work. Bear in mind this that is a very, very, selective focus on aspects I felt called to write on and go into depth. Those of you who are feeling vulnerable or easily triggered at this time, stop reading for a bit and check in to see if this is what you want to get into now.

Selected Alignments:

Sun (0 Capricorn) sextile Nessus (0 Pisces) :- This is a time in which the focus of our conscious awareness shines a light upon the parts of the soul which – to our eyes – may seem the most wounded and/or disconnected from Spirit. Very often, we see these wounds inflicted by sexual abuse, or significant energetic and physical violations of other kinds – anything that blocks us from the flow of Eros (intimacy). Those of you with placements near 0 Leo will feel this as a powerful Yod or Finger of Fate in which you are challenged to get deeper with that sense of vulnerability – and potential violation. The point here is to not allow yourself to be engulfed by your pain (well, I suppose you could do that if that resonates) – but here we see the energy of the Solar Lion able and willing to begin a pivotal process of healing and re-claiming that sense of sacred connection with the Universe, if you let it. Gemstones that may of of use: rhodocrosite, rhodonite, carnelian, thulite

Sun (0 Capricorn) trine Phaethon (0 Taurus) :- The focus of the Sun makes a significant connection to the energy of the rebellious, distrustful teenager, rejecting (and yet, at heart, seeking the approval of) the Father. Phaethon, in mythology, was the son of the Sun God. He did not know who his father was for much of his short life. When he did find out, he went to Good ol’ Dad and asked him for proof of his love. What’s that, you might ask? The chance to drive one of the most dangerous things in the Universe: The Sun Chariot. Despite repeated warnings, the Sun God finally caves in and hands him the keys (metaphorically speaking). In his inexperience and impulsivity, Phaethon nearly destroys the planet and has to be shot down by another patriarch, Zeus, by way of lightning strike. Phaethon dies and his wound is unresolved. In Taurus, Phaethon’s energies speak to deeper wounds of distrust and themes of betrayal by the father figure, often linking back to our most basic sense of security (or lack thereof) in this world. Those of you with bodies near 0 Virgo will experience this as a powerful Grand Earth Trine. Keep in mind the need to recognize those wounds, to heal them – and – if that works with your paradigm, to walk away from attachments to them. How you deal with that process is not mandated by stars or deities, that’s in your hands.

And – just to be clear – we’re talking about the Father archetype / energy signature – which does not necessarily mean (in a physical sense), your birth father. We carry these memories and energetic patterns down the ancestral line, and from our own spiritual paths of evolution – they do not exactly need to mirror or map the people in your personal (perception) of your story, but rather the one we weave together.

Sun (0 Capricorn) squared Hebe and the Super Galactic Center (1 Libra) :- Making a very long story very short: Hebe represents the flow of healing, sexual, magickal, emotional (call it what you like) energy, often through the archetype/body of the Maiden (often in her teenage years). Hebe, in mythology, gets seduced by an older figure and often represents unconventional pairings (in terms of age). In my work with clients, I often see Hebe represented in experiences where a young woman finds herself drawn to a much older figure representing tradition, authority and wisdom. She engages with him sexually, often later realizing the lure or hook that drew her into it. She might assume that she’s ‘in charge’ of her experience, but that might not be the case. Take for instance the teenage girl and her high school math teacher – I’m sure you can imagine how that plays out. For others, depending upon placements, it can refer to the same sexual energy, but one that is taken by force – though other interpretations are equally valid. Hebe now conjuncts the Super-Galactic Center – quite possibly one of the most powerful sources of energy in the Universe. It pulls us to do our deep dances with the Shadow, often through ‘The Other’ or ‘The Partner’. Some may be drawn to such experiences today, irrespective of physical age – think of her as an Archetype. Some of these experiences will ask you to be fully accountable for your role in the experience (that’s not an invitation to blame/shame/ etc. ), and to recognize where you did not have / did not feel you had much say in. The Sun’s powerful square to these bodies basically tells us that it’s time to think about the energetic legacy that our choices here, leave behind for others . It also makes us question the way we may subconsciously give over our power, agency and freedom to choose to those we assume as ‘in power’.

Again, this is collective work – you may never have had such an experience in your current life – and yet – what you do now, by sheer virtue of being, contributes to the collective expression / experience of that energy. Be mindful that some will be very sensitive to this current expression of energy.

Sun (0 Capricorn) conjunct Hylonome (1 Capricorn) :- Whilst you’ll feel this exact conjunction on the 23/24th or so, it’s energies are already quite strongly felt at this time. I somewhat uncharitably, but accurately, call Hylonome the ‘poster girl for codependency’. She marries a centaur named Cyllarus, a guy I kind of associate with the drunken football fan who jumps into the other teams’ stalls and punches a player for scoring against his home team. Cyllarus, whilst able to be passionate, loyal and noble (in a more balanced form), tends to go off the handle and into the extreme. He is triggered by anything that challenges his most cherished beliefs and whatever identity he feels to be a part of (whether it’s an ethnicity, tribe, nation, country, football team – that’s up to him). Cyllarus goes off and gets himself killed … with a spear through the chest. There’s a sense of rushing headlong into things without much thought, but he does it anyway. Hylonome, on the other hand, seeing her dead husband, throws herself on the spear after him. She cannot bear to live without him and consider an existence that is separate and complete within herself. This is not to say that Hylonome’s grief is any less valid, but to the say that she had a different choice she could have made. From my reading of her, she was so hard-wired to believe that she could not be without Cyllarus, that she did not stop to consider her choices and simply acted – out of an impulse born of her wound. Would she find love again? Could she live without him? etc. etc. etc. Those of you for whom this strikes a major chord, I’d suggest reading Women Who Love too Much by Robin Norwood. It’s a book that has changed many a life, including my own. The conjunction with the Sun, again, inspires us to make energetic choices with the long-term view of what legacy we leave behind for others to inherit. We also question the authority that tells us we must have a man to survive, or else.

Mars (23 Libra) opposite Eris (22 Aries) :- The exact point of this opposition passed a little while ago, but again, its energies remain strong. Here we are called to see how the Masculine can find ways of expression that both honor itself, and the Rising-Awakening-Embodiment-of-Self-and-Truth that Eris brings to the table, in the form of the Feminine. Bear in mind that we have culturally accepted codes of what ‘balance’ looks and feels like, even within spiritual circles. Questioning these codes and finding out what balance looks and feels like to you is Eris’ challenge.

One path of balance will be found through calm-weaving (a term from Terry Pratchett’s last book *sniff* ), and the other will be found at the edge of the sword (not the kind that slices through people, but through the illusions that we hold onto to make up a sense of ‘reality’).

Considering the other alignments, it seems to me that the Mars-Eris opposition holds the key to addressing these wounds. And no, there is no one way to do it. There is no ideal way to walk away from these experiences that is better than another. What I have found is that much of the rhetoric that surrounds ‘the healing process’ actually binds us to timelines, people, philosophies, that aren’t always the best for us as individuals.

Strike out, in other words, and find healing the way you need to.

It’s an incredible Solstice, energetically speaking. Bear in mind that the Full Moon in Cancer is just a few days away 😉

Bairavee Balasubramaniam
The Sky Priestess

Post © Bairavee Balasubramaniam, 2015. Feel free to share for personal, non-commercial use through the FB/Wordpress ‘Share’ buttons. If you want to re-blog this for your organization, website, etc. please get in touch and request my consent first.

Spiritual Shaming, Self-Worth and Why Suffering Isn’t the Way You Need To Go …

W44_supernova_remnant - Copy
We are all, Children of the Universe. We come into being bearing so many Gifts and so much Love. We all have so much to Give.
The sad part is when we forget that we are a part of the Collective. That we too, deserve the love, nurture, support and abundance that we so freely and willingly give to others.
The sad part is when we deny ourselves the same flow of energy we seek to open for others. Some locate it within a rhetoric that says ‘if you suffer, you are sacred’.
Really? Why?
A lot of spiritual growth happens when you truly sit and feel into that question. Yes, suffering, feeling wounds, scars, trauma – can be an incredibly rewarding process. But why is being in pain any less sacred than being happy and fulfilled?
The political scientist in me says that’s an awfully convenient idea to tell a population unhappy with the way they lives are panning out. It makes for a great captive population.
‘What, your life isn’t great? Taxes are too high? The Plague? What, you want reforms? Err…Uhm… — Well… that’s just God’s way, and my, aren’t you blessed to suffer so … What do you mean why? Well, you’ve sinned!!!! (and depending on your perspective, that’s this life or lives past, or simply for having been born human and wanting to pro-create)’
The priestess in me looks at it as as a well-meaning but outdated adherence to a old paradigm that, frankly, does not hold water in the present (unless you really really want it to – and if you do, be aware that it is your choice).
And a lot of that goes back to what I’ve been writing recently on the wounded healer / woundology paradigm. There’s a very big difference between taking the time you need to work through it, and between self-sabotaging your healing process because (1) you don’t believe you can heal (2) you don’t believe you deserve to (3) the Ego says it’s holy to suffer, or (4) that you’ve sinned so badly you deserve to fry for the remainder of your existence/s
Now – this whole dialogue on sinning / attachment to woundedness / refusal to see yourself as deserving better – deserves its own book. I’m going to move onto a different aspect of the question.
Another reason (especially) healers who provide services to others have issues with healing / nurturing themselves is because of the ‘God will provide’ argument.
Let’s break that down shall we.
I recall a few weeks ago (and I’ve seen it a few times) an individual who was very upset with me charging for my services and going on my travels (it’s how I do my thing). He was so so so agitated and kept telling me how I needed to repent as God would provide me with I needed.
Truth be told, yes, God/Goddess has absolutely provided. I have a skillset which I can use, and people willing to honor the work I facilitate. I make sure that I can give back what I receive, not just through paid sessions. I actually do quite a bit of pro bono work, and donate when I can.
Plus – Spirit is the one that decides when, how much and how I do what I do. So, as I tend to say, ‘If you don’t like it, take it up with the Boss. I’m sure Ma-Kali can squeeze you in for an appointment 😉 ‘
Without much surprise, I find I never get this kind of judgment from polytheists – most cultures that believed in more than one form of deity has, inevitably, some form of being that celebrated Abundance, Prosperity, Success and Wealth.
The only ‘sin’ that I see happening is when a person gives only to receive, does not honor the balance of exchange of energy or measures their worth only in terms of dollars/currency made.
Plus, if we think about it – even within the paradigm of ‘God provides’, who is to say that flow of energy does not come through money?
Plus – if we were to hold to a very strict interpretation of that argument – by that same logic, no one would need any help from any human at all.
That’s not the paradigm we currently live in, so .. I’m not buying that argument so much. It uses the name of the Divine, but shames those who give into a place where they cannot receive.
If Ascended Beings still emoted the way most humans do, I’m sure that they’ve *facepalmed* quite a bit over the past few centuries.
So in summary:
Yes, you’ve got gifts to give.
Yes, you’ve got the right to be happy.
Yes, you’ve got the right to reap the rewards of your work.
No, you are not a sinner for wanting to do so.
No, you are not a sinner for wanting to not suffer.
No, you are not any less sacred for wanting to make sure your needs are met.
We have been conditioned to think this way. And it is time to lift those shackles.
Step away from anyone who has to shame you into becoming ‘spiritual’.
We’re moving into a New Paradigm, people.
Plus, we’re eventually moving into a global economy that has got to run in different ways. Once we deal with our collective issues surrounding money / energy exchange / women / the sacral chakra (all linked to the same vibration) .. I think this discussion will be completely obsolete.
Hope that happens sooner, rather than later x
Ciao for now!
Bairavee Balasubramaniam
The Sky Priestess
Post © Bairavee Balasubramaniam, 2015. All rights reserved. Please see T&Cs below. I have had to update them recently as people have been sharing my work in ways that do not honor the time and effort put into them.
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Image: W44 Supernova Remnant by By NASA/DOE/Fermi LAT Collaboration, NRAO/AUI, JPL-Caltech, ROSAT [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons. Digitally Altered by Bairavee Balasubramaniam (08 December 2015).