Wow there is a lot of stuff going on right now. Looking at the on again off again bailout plan reminds me of Lloyd Bridges in the movie Airplane!: I picked a bad week to quit smoking; to quit drinking' to quit sniffing glue!

Astrologically speaking we have for the next three weeks the planet Mercury retrograde, causing upset and mayhem in the world of communication: verbal, computers, phones, faxes, etc. And to add fuel to the fire, from October 1st to December 17th we will be in and out of a kala sarpa (KS) yoga, putting everyone -potentially-into lemming mode.

What does all this mumbo jumbo mean? How can I work with these energies? And -more importantly-how could I possibly benefit from them?

Firstly, the infamous Mercury retrograde. In the world of astrology, each of the planets governs a particular aspect of our lives, and for the world of communication it is Mercury. When the planet's orbit slows down it is said to be in retrograde because relative to our movement through the galalxy it appears to be going backwards. During a retrograde period, the effect that a particular planet has upon us is said to be more intense and at times contradictory to its norm. So, when Mercury does it's little 'moondance' backward we have --as Led Zeppelin so eloquently put it---Communication Breakdown!

Oh the agony of miscommunication! I tell my kids "meet me at the mall in an hour" and they hear " I am going to see the Eiffel tower". Well, maybe not to that extreme, but you get the picture. Everything dealing with communication can be affected: computers, faxes, the mail service, conversations, etc. This is a time to double check your 'i's as well as your 't's'. Back up your computer programs and do not rely on a package getting to it's destination on time no matter what Fed Ex says! The airport? Oh you can expect more delays. Legal documents? Try to wait until the dust settles before you sign any really important papers.

Geez! Why does the Universe put us through such grief every three months for three weeks? She is asking us to review our actions and thoughts to make sure that we are making higher destiny choices. This is actually a great time to 're' whatever. Review, revamp, reminisce are some things that come to mind. Clean out that closet or that infamous drawer beneath the phone. Have the SAT or other big test to take? This is an awesome time to review your knowledge. Just remember to show up to the test plenty early because there can be problems with registration--again, communication breakdown.

Moving along to the Kala Sarpa yoga we have the potential for some radically unbalanced thought forms. A KS yoga occurs when all of the visible planets (note this does not include Pluto, Uranus, Neptune--ok so Pluto is not a planet but I will give him credit here) are between the north and south nodes of the moon. Someone born during this time would have an astrology chart that quite frankly looks very one sided. And, consequently, so too can one's behavior and thoughtforms be rather skewed. But this time it affects all of society so we can have everyone singing like Ether Merman that 'Everything is Coming up Roses!' or we go into Chicken Little mode and scream that the SKY IS FALLING! This KS yoga is not constant during the aforementioned time frame because as the Moon makes her travels we have two weeks on and two weeks off from the madness.

So how in the world could this possibly be beneficial? For those of us who like to work with the energies to manifest our desires it is like one heck of a thunderstrom. It takes great pressure to make a diamond out of coal and so too can we use these energies to find our 400+ carat shiny rock! Concentrate firmly upon the reality you want to manifest and use this cosmic TNT to bring it to fruition.

Tools? Tools you say? Yes, tools, and my favorite tools are prayer and mantra. Sanskrit and Hebrew are two languages that not only have a
meaning base, but they also have an aspect of energy effect upon one's surroundings. The repitition is either constant throughout the day or
in sets of 108 reptitions twice a day. Interestingly a rosary has 54 beads and a mala--counting tool to do mantras--108. In Hinduism and Buddhism mantras are performed to appease various deities and planets, thereby bringing good fortune (karma) and lessening bad. Say it is in your destiny to hurt your leg; by performing mantras one can avert a major fracture and merely stub their toe. Like the 40 days in the Bible, mantras are performed for a 40 day regimen.

To keep the miscommunication at a minimum one could perform a mantra to Mercury. In Vedic/Hindu astrology the planet Mercury is called Buddha--not THE Buddha, just Buddha. His mantra goes like this: Om Buddhaya Swaha for those of us 29 years of age or older and Om Buddhaya Namaha for the younger crowd. The difference in the closing statement has to do with one's Saturn return to its placment at birth which occurs at about 29 years of age. As for pronunciation the 'a' sounds like that in apple.

So you have your tool for Mercury - what about the Kala Sarpa yoga? I am not familiar with one specific for this yoga, but I would suggest using this time of madness to bring forth more cash prosperity or a breakthrough in your work arena--or whatever arena for that matter. The Hindu deity of abundance is Lakshmi--pronounced lock-shmee. Her mantra is as follows: Om Shrim Maha Lakshmiyei Swaha (or namaha). Om activates the spiritual brow center. Shrim (shreem) is the root word for attraction. Maha means great. The yei (long 'a' sound) is like a woo hoo! yeah! Lakshmi (or whatever deity, as you will find this often after the deity's name). And the swaha or namaha means I salute.

As for breakthroughs, I bring you the mantra for the lovable, elephant-headed deity: Ganesh. He who rides on a rat will break down the door or squeeze through the smallest crevice to bring forth good fortune. His mantra is as follows: Om Gum Ganapatayei Swaha (or namaha). Here the word gum--pronounced as it looks--is the root word for Ganesh. The word Ganapati is another name for him, and when we tie it in with the salutation we drop the 'i', add an 'a' (pronounced like apple as are all the 'a's in his name) and then the 'yei'.

Remember that energy follows thought. When performing your mantras concentrate on what you are wanting to manifest. And remember to trust and not place judgment on what comes. Say you are performing the mantra for Ganesh to get a better job and HOLY PETE! you end up in a fender bender! How is that good fortune? Through the course of events that follows you just might meet your new boss. I have a patient who through the death of an elderly gentleman crossing a dark road met the man of her dreams. On a rainy night in Denison, a man visiting his family crossed Austin street afterdark. The street was not well lit, and unfortunately he was hit by a driver , dying at the scene. People ran to the wife's aid, but no one took time to tend to the driver--who did not wake up that morning saying to himself: hey I wanna run over some old guy! Well, my patient thought outside the box and consoled the visibly shaken driver. Two months ago they married.

I share with you that story to drive home two points: trust more that Spirit works for your highest and greatest good and secondly that even out of the worst calamities something wonderful can manifest.

For further information on astrology I highly recommend my mentor, Cynthia Novak, at www.cynthianovak.com. To learn more about mantras check out the series Mantra: Sacred Words of Power by Thomas Ashley-Farrand.

Brightest of blessings,