This post continues the ongoing series on How to Bend Destiny.
Shukra – Planet of Love, Wealth and Fame
Venus is a planet centered on materiality: love, wealth and fame fall under his remit. Needless to say, the deity features as a prominent God of physical wealth and comforts within the Hindu Pantheon,along with Lakshmi and Kubera.
Effects of Venus
In Eastern astrology, Venus is known as Shukra or Shukracharya. Whilst Brihaspati is the Guru of all the Devas, Shukracharya is the Guru of all the Rakshasas. Shukra was the son of Bhrigu. Interestingly, it was he that was first to receive the Maha Mrityunjaya mantra from Lord Shiva and perfected its siddhi – to raise the very dead back to life! It is said that to receive it his tapas was extreme: he hung upside down from a tree above a fire while meditating on Shiva.
Venus governs one’s interaction with the sensual and material. Those with strong artist talents, high levels of wealth,beauty and fame are all heavily influenced by the positive qualities of Venus. On an inter-personal level, Venus influences one’s marriage and relationship with lovers.
Boost your material wealth!
The Vedic prayer to Venus is below, followed by the Shukra Gayatri.
Vedic prayer to Venus
“Himakundha Mrinaalabham Daithyaanam Paramam gurum
Sarvashaastra pravatkaaram Bhaargavam pranamaamyaham”
“I bow to the descendant of Bhrigu, whose appears white like an icy pond. He is the spiritual master of the rakshasas, and teacher of the scriptures.”
“Om aswadhwajaaya vidmahe
dhanur hastaaya dhimahi
tanno Shukra prachodayaat“
“We know the horse-flagged one,
We meditate on the one who carries a bow,
May Venus inspire us”
Mantras to Lakshmi
Coming soon: Part 9 – Saturn
Prior parts of the series
Click here for part 1 – Introduction
Click here for part 2 List of Mantras to Planets
Click here for part 3 The Sun + Shiva
Click here for part 4 The Moon + Parvati
Click here for part 5 Mars + Skanda/Hanuman
Click here for part 6 Mercury + Vishnu
Click here for part 7 Jupiter + Dakshinamurthy
This post continues from the prior article on Tratak – click here to read.
The benefits are many
The point of tratak is to ultimately still the mind and use the resulting concentration to access soul power within.
Aside from improved focus, mental acuity and memory, other notable benefits are:
- Precognition. One may experience such heightened levels of perception that your observation skills border on precognition. IE – you can almost read someone’s thoughts or know what they are about to say before they say it. This occurs because the mind is usually attempting to process more information from your 5 senses continuously than is usually possible. Most of the time it must ‘delete’ the majority of this information flowing in and just focus on the relevant details. With the practice of tratak, one starts to delete less and absorb more.
- Influence. Your powers of influence improve as you can no only ‘read’ people better, your added awareness and mental acuity give rise to greater levels of confidence. In combination these two factors allow you to improve your oration abilities, stick to the strength of your convictions and therefore much more easily influence others.
- Siddhis. The advanced practitioner of tratak can reach the stage where their cognitive abilities can access the subtle realms of existence and channel divine power to manifest siddhis (when used in conjunction with mantras); the easiest being clairvoyance, remote vision, psychic communication, etc.
Worship Rudra, the God of the Storm
In the centre of the Krsna Yajur Veda, there is a hymn called the Rudra (also called the Rudram or Rudraprasna). It is a powerful invocation of Lord Shiva in the fierce form of Rudra. Rudra is the God of the Wind, Storm and the Hunt. He is accompanied by his fearsome entourage of the Maruts, the Gods of the Storm and Hunt and is known as the God of Thieves.
Translating from Sanskrit, Rudra means “the Howling One”, “the Terrible One”, “the Roaring One”, or “the Wild One”.
Tap into the essence of the Veda
Each verse is filled with incredible potency and extremely beneficial to the health and spiritual development of any sincere aspirant.
The Rudra is split into two parts – the Namaka and the Chamaka. The Namaka is so named because most lines end with ‘namo’ (prostrations) and similarly, the Chamaka’s verses each end in ‘chame’ (give me).
One of the reasons why the hymn is so powerful is because the Panchakshari mantra – Nama Shivaya – occurs in its very centre. The Panchakshari Mantra is the very essence of Shiva, constituting the power of the universe, the 5 elements, and directly stimulates chakras in the body of the sadhak.
Method of chanting
The Rudra can be chanted from start to finish for a one-off recitation, or can be structured in a specific way for multiple rounds.
The number eleven is auspicious to Shiva. To chant the Rudra 11x is called a Laghu Rudra, or an Ekadasa Rudra. The Namaka is chanted 11x, each time combined with a part of the Chamaka.
Taking this further, 11 Ekadasa Rudras constitute a Maharudra. 11 Maharudras constitute an Adi Rudra – the ultimate invocation of Shiva. The last time such a high profile event occured was in the presence of Sri Sathya Said Baba.
A yagnya usually accompanies the chanting, followed by abishek of panchamrita (the 5 components of the nectar of the Gods) – which is made up of five precious liquids, including water from a sacred river, milk, honey, ghee, yoghurt and the juice of a sugar-cane.
Chant the Rudra for Prosperity, Power and Peace
In general terms, aspirants pray to Shiva for the following benefits:
- Inviting auspiciousness into their lives
- Increased detachment and affinity for spirituality
- Incredible health and vitality; alleviating disease
- Greater efficiency and time management, overcoming procrastination
- Counteracting the malefic effects of the Sun, Jupiter, Saturn and Rahu
Needless to say, the worship of the Auspicious One also brings great peace to not only the aspirant and family, but extends as far as lokakshemam – ie peace for the entire plane. Click here for a prior article on peace.
His Holiness Sri Swami Sivananda Saraswathi shed further light on the Rudra, outlining the following specific (and more tangible) benefits in proportion to the number of Rudras performed:
1 Rudra – Freedom from Bala graha (diseases common to children).
3 Rudra – Freedom from imminent difficulties with which one is faced.
5 Rudra – Freedom from the evil effects of certain planets occupying unfavourable positions.
7 Rudra – Freedom from great fear.
9 Rudra – The fruit of one Vajapeya sacrifice (one of the great public yagnyas of ancient times).
11 Rudra – Getting the favour of kings and great wealth.
33 Rudra – Attainment of wishes for objects and having no enemies.
77 Rudra – Enjoyment of great happiness.
99 Rudra – Attainment of son, grandson, wealth, grain, Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha and freedom from death.
1 Maharudra – Attainment of the favour of kings and becoming the Lord of great wealth.
3 Maharudra – Fulfilment of impossible tasks.
5 Maharudra – Acquirement of vast lands.
7 Maharudra – Attainment of the seven worlds.
9 Maharudra – Freedom from births and deaths.
1 Atirudra – Becoming God.
Is there any superior sacrifice in modern times?
In the modern day, the Rudra is considered one of the greatest yagnyas (fire sacrifices) possible and on par with the Aswamedha yagnyas etc of ancient times.
Chant or listen to the Rudra daily (click here for a link to the audio); Mondays in particular are auspicious to Shiva.
Diwali occurs on Wednesday 26th October. It signifies Rama’s homecoming and popularly celebrated through the celebration of light and its ability to lead us through the darkness.
Whilst its now a hugely commercialised festival in India and worldwide, it is important to remember it as a powerful time for mantra sadhana.
The mantras for Diwali
The advised method of tapping into the power is to write Rama Nama. Click here for a prior article.
Alternatives include the Vishnu Sahasranama – a stotra (hymn) to Vishnu, extolling Him through his most popular 1,000 names. One may write a treatise on the Vishnu Sahasranama alone, but its power stems from its Divine origin (composed by Veda Vyasa). It was taught to Bhishma, the great Grandfather of the epic Mahabharata, who revealed it to the world in the presence of Sri Krishna, Avatar of Vishnu. Click here to hear it.
Kick off the Financial New Year with a flying start!
Finally, some Hindus also pray to Lakshmi, the Goddess of Wealth. The reason is that in some calendars, Diwali also coincides with the financial new year. Hence, old accounts are closed and a new year of business begins post Diwali.
A difficult time
Bankers face a difficult time at the moment. The global economy is under pressure and world is against them!
Banking, in the public’s eyes, has grown into a culture of distrustful, deceitful behaviour based around a never-ending thirst for greed and power. Yet it has also been the backbone of global trade and attracted the best and brightest individuals to strive to better themselves and test their limits. In short we need bankers! But not the negative associations.
This post is not intended to be party to playing the blame game, but will attempt to be part of the solution: to encourage the simultaneous development of character along with ability.
So how can we derive the positive benefits without the negatives?
The solution is surprisingly simple! Pray to Maha Lakshmi!
But isnt Lakshmi the Goddess of Wealth? Surely, bankers are all already rich!
The downturn has undoubtedly highlighted that a culture of excess is prevalent in banking. But wealth should not be equated to just money and greed. The abundance one attracts through the Divine is much greater than just the material kind: Lakshmi is also the Goddess of Virtue and wealth of Character!
More than Money
There are 16 kinds of wealth one can attract through praising the Divine. They are enumerated in a prior post (click here to see it), but they include: Courage and Strength, Morality and Ethics and Higher thinking.
The wisdom locked in ancient mantras is relevant even in today’s complex world. Here are a set of mantras that may prove helpful to banking professionals at a time of great uncertainty and difficulty:
- Ganesha Gayatri – click here. For foresight to aid us in understanding the longer term repercussions of our actions than the short term effects.
- Lakshmi Gayatri – click here, or simply Shreem. Invoke Lakshmi to grant you the character required to acquire and sustain wealth.
- Narayana Gayatri, or simply: Rama. Why praise Vishnu as Narayana or Rama too? In the opening verses of the Vishnu Sahasranama, Vishnu is extolled as the King of Dharma (righteous conduct and behaviour). Such valour and knowledge of what’s right and wrong is a natural complement and pre-requisite to wealth accumulation. In his incarnation as Rama, he established a powerful precedent of how the ideal King (or any person of significant responsibility) should behave – in virtually every test. Understanding this by meditating on the name of Rama is therefore also an excellent method of character development.
The Goddess of Wealth: provider of everything you need!
For most, Lakshmi is associated with Goddess of Wealth, Money, Prosperity and material abundance in general. However, Her remit stretches far beyond!
A wealth of character, culture and knowledge
There are 8 forms of Lakshmi (I will not go through them but provide a link – click here) and 16 types of wealth that Lakshmi is associated with.
There are various lists, but the underlying point is the same – a highly diverse set of virtues, possessions and values to make one truly rich in every sense of the word! In the Shri Sukta – a Vedic hymn to Lakshmi, as Shri (as the embodiment of auspiciousness or the revered one), She is said to provide Moksha itself (liberation from rebirth).
- Courage and strength
- Gold, precious stones, valuables
- Higher goals, thinking and meditative states
- Morality and ethics
- Long life
The mantras for Lakshmi:
I have addressed the following mantras in prior posts:
A deeper understanding…
As characteristic of all spiritual paths, there is always a subtler dimension to all forms of worship – even those than initially appear shallow and selfish. By continuing to chant the mantra, envisioning the very deity through the mantra and accepting the deity as your Guru (spiritual teacher), one can attain the highest levels of spirituality.
Today is Friday!! What does Friday mean to you?
The end of the week is finally here! What does Friday mean to you? No more work (for some of us!)? Time with the family? A weekend getaway?
I personally love Friday. It is a prime day for Devi Worship. Moreover, during Navaratri, our prayers are amplified by magnitudes we cannot comprehend – don’t miss out on this opportunity! – T.D.I.F. (Thank Devi It’s Friday!)
How to Pray:
Prior posts have covered a multitude of mantras and sadhanas for all but today’s focus is Lakshmi.
Fridays are incredibly auspicious for Lakshmi, the Goddess of Abundance and Wealth. I would greatly recommend the following courses of action – whether you need to fix something lacking in your life, out of pure devotion or as part of a larger Navaratri routine, these two technologies are incredibly effective at pushing you toward your goals:
See my associated posts by clicking on the links above. I would also highlight my articles on how to make your prayers heard even faster – click here to see my post on Super-charging your ability to attract abundance.
Don’t miss the incredible opportunity that is Navaratri!
Inject some momentum into your Life with the Gayatri
Adding the Gayatri Maha Mantra to your daily routine is a powerful technology to enhance your mantra sadhanas.
As detailed in my post here (click for details) the Gayatri is the root of all Vedic knowledge, as embodied by the force behind the Sun. Knowledge is power; chant the Gayatri to gain ground on the path toward your goals.
Time rich, money poor? Its the Attack of Lack!
Unless you are already on your perfect career path with a role you love, a fulfilling purpose and more than satisfactory salary, you’re one of the many who feel the Attack of Lack. What is this? Quite simply, its the mental effects of never feeling as if your needs are taken care of in terms of material abundance.
Sadguru Sant Keshavadas of Bangalore recommends such a combination to bring prosperity and auspiciousness into your career or business.
“Om Bhur Bhuvah Suvaha
Tat Savitur Vare-enyam*
Bhargo Devasya Dhimahi
* and ^. It is vital that there is correct pronunciation on these two words. They are not chanted as read!
As seen above, Shreem is tagged onto the end of the mantra. Sadguru Keshavadas recommends chanting this version with devotion and focus every Friday for 3 months to see success. The number of chants is proportional to your own level of need; there are no limits.
None. Shreem is a Bija mantra.
- Attraction of wealth
- Attraction of abundance.
The Yoga of practicality
Tratak is one of the 6 methods of Hatha Yoga.
The practice of tratak is key to improving one’s concentration during meditation on certain abstract mantras.
In particular, one would practice tratak for bija mantra japa – such as Kleem and Shreem.
Tratak is generally considered an advanced technique and the help of a Guru should be sought by the serious practitioner.
Concetration is vital to manifestation
It is well known that benefits from mantra japa accrue in proportion to effort. Concentration is the underlying measure of effort; the greater the concentration whilst chanting, the more powerful the results.
Tratak helps to focus the mind and dramatically improve concentration. In this way, it is not dissimilar to pranayama.
What is tratak?
Tratak is the concentrated effort of maintaining one’s vision on one particular object or area within.
There are three forms:
- Inner – one focuses on the point between the eyes while they are closed. This is the area where the pituitary gland is located within the brain.
- Middle – focus on an object at an intermediary distance; for example an oil lamp at arm’s length.
- Outer – in this method the aspirant focuses on a distant object such as the moon or stars.
- Freshly shower, wear freshly washed, loose clothes and find a quiet room to practice alone.
- Sit in your usual yogic asana (posture) – such as cross legged with the spine, neck and head straight.
- One calms the mind using pranayama before starting.
- Actively avoid and repel any intense emotional thoughts. Clear the mind.
- Start the tratak method that you find most comfortable (inner, middle, outer etc).
- Keep absolutely still and quiet during practice.
- Start with 15 mins of practice and work up to 1-2hrs.
- Always practice for the same or more time than in your prior practice.
- Try to be regular in practice – at the same time every day or week, depending on frequency.
- It will take at least 3 months of continuous practice to see significant improvement in your mental state.