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Happy New Monkey Year 

Happy New Monkey Year 
KABBALAH WEEKEND WORKSHOP IN ESALEN: MAY 20-May 22
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Happy New Year! Welcoming the Fire Monkey...

 
Gahl in New York for private readings and workshop Feb 20-March 4
 
  • Hollywood, CA - Sat, Feb 13 at 4pm. Valentine's Special - The Alchemy of Relationships Workshop: Soul Mates & Tips from Mystics. $26. DEN meditation 360 S. La Brea Ave Los Angeles, CA 90036 To register: 323-424-3444. More info: HERE
New York, NY - The Astrology of 2016: The Year of the Monkey. Tue, March 1st 7pm Golden Bridge Yoga,  253 Centre St, New York, NY 10013 to register, click HERE or  call (212) 343-8191 For readings, email me at Gahl@CosmicNavigator.com
Andover, MA -  March 4 - 7. Circle of Wisdom: 90 Main Street, Andover, MA 01810.For astrology reading call:  (978) 474-8010 or online: HERE. Fri, March 4th 7pm: Astrology of the Year 2016. Sign up HERE. Sat, March 5th 2:30pm Surfing Synchronicities: Deciphering Signs, Symbols & Coincidences. Sign up HERE
  • Esalen, CA - May 20-22 Kabbalah Weekend Retreat: Make Your Dreams Come True With the Tree of Life. More info HERE
Happy New Moon in Aquarius: The Year of the Fire Red Monkey
 
From Feb. 8, 2016, the New Moon in Aquarius, until Jan 27, 2017, the next New Moon in Aquarius, we are all monkeys. Not only because that is what Darwin concluded a while back, but because in the Chinese zodiac, every twelve years we are under the influence of the primates. But every 60 years (5 cycles of 12) we are in the domain of the Red Fire Monkey, and as the name suggests, this year we can expect more action and adventures stories than romantic comedy tales. The dates listed below were the other monkey years when we climbed trees and ate bananas. If you are born in these periods, well, you are a monkey for real. But you can also go back and see what happened in these years, so you can better understand what is expected in the next twelve lunar months:
  • Jan. 22, 2004 – Feb. 8, 2005
  • Feb. 4, 1992 – Jan. 22, 1993
  • Feb. 16, 1980 – Jan. 4, 1981
  • Jan. 30, 1968 – Feb. 16, 1969
  • Feb. 12, 1956 – Jan. 30, 1957
 
Why Should I Care?
Even if you don’t follow or believe in Chinese astrology, close to 2 billion people do (Chinese Astrology is followed in many other places besides China). In addition, if you believe in the “like attracts like” paradigm, or in the “power of thought,” or in “collective visualization,” then you should know that almost one third of humanity will project to the cosmos an image of a red monkey. They will conduct risky business according to the monkey philosophy, invest in the market in an explosive, impetuous way, acting just as a monkey would. In other words, even if there was nothing monkey about the next year, there sure will be since so many people expect it. That being said, I find a great deal of truth and wisdom in the Chinese Zodiac but was always surprised how come the Panda never made it into the wheel…

Who is the Monkey?
One of the four Chinese classical literature is a manuscript written (most likely) in the 16th century by Wu Ch’eng-en. The book is called “Monkey: A Journey to the West.” It is a tale that takes place in the 7th-8th century when Buddhism traveled to China and blended with Daoism and Confucianism. The story has all of these three philosophies combined effortlessly with no conflict. I wish someone in the West could write a book that combines Judaism, Christianity and Islam with such harmony. The story is very influenced by another famous monkey, Hanuman, who is one of the three main character in the epic tale of Ramayana.
The story begins with the birth of the monkey out of a stone that was fertilized and fashioned by the wind (just like Hanuman’s father was the wind god). Wind = air = intelligence, magic and hyperactivity. Stone = Earth, practical, physical.


The monkey images were c
reated by the men behind Gorillaz: Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett for the BBC cover of the Beijing Olympic. 

The first act the Stone Money did, as he emerged out of the rock was to bow to the five direction and gaze at the sky with his piercing eyes that sent a golden beam all the way to heaven. The Jade Emperor, heaven’s ruler, sent his investigators of paranormal activities to see where these beams of light come from. They reported back that it is nothing but a silly monkey with some raw natural magic – nothing to worry about, just another monkey protégé that will probably lose his exceptionality in puberty. Mistake! It just goes to show that even the mighty emperor cannot fully see the future, which means there is “free-will,” not all is fate. Now, that is an important message coming from a society that valued fate far more than free will.

In the year of the monkey, free-will and choice is exercised to the fullest. If you want to be a good monkey, then on Feb 8 “bow down,” an allegory to commit time, money and energy into five aspects of your life you want to work on in the year of the monkey. For example: bowing to a better diet, bowing to being more present in the relationship, bowing down to my creativity etc. Whatever you want to say about the outrageously rebellious troublemaking monkey, he did start his life in humility and also will end it that way.

Soon after, Stone Monkey became king of the monkeys and instructed everyone to call him “Handsome Monkey,” since he didn’t appreciate being named after a stone. So much for humility. After a while, monkey had a terrible thought: “What if I die and reincarnate into a miserable person in a godforsaken land?” So he embarked on a journey to gain immortality. He found a great Daoist master who eventually taught him how to be defy death, ride clouds (after all he was a son of the wind), shape-shift, as well as become a powerful sorcerer and martial artists. My favorite sentence in the book is from one of the lessons Monkey received from his master, a message we should all take into our hearts:

“Nothing in this world is difficult, but thinking makes it seems so. Where there is true will, there is always a way.”

This year a great deal of magic, and synchronicities will take place in your life. It is a great year to start martial arts, yoga, dance or any activity involving movement.



Monkey gains immortality and of course a new immortal name – “Aware of Emptiness” – but it is not enough, he needs more. So he tricks the dragon to give him powerful weapon and with it he goes to heaven. He causes so much trouble at the Emperor’s court that eventually he is pronounced persona non grata and is expelled. But since no one can kill an immortal, he has the last laugh. Monkey goes on upsetting gods and goddesses, immortals, and demigods and even steals the rare and special peach elixir that is more like ayahuasca than wine, and he gets so intoxicated that he is finally apprehended.



Eventually, the Buddha comes to the rescue. He offers Monkey a wager – If Monkey, who has now changed his name to “Great Sage Equal to Heaven,” can leap out of the Buddha’s palm to the end of the world and return, he will become the new emperor of heaven. Monkey agrees and jumps to the end of the world where he sees five pillars. He tags his name with a spray can and of course, marks the middle pillar by urinating on it.



When he jumps back, he sees the Buddha laughing. The Buddha, master of form and emptiness, is everywhere thus monkey never left his palm. The five pillars he saw were the Buddha’s five fingers. When monkey started arguing, the Buddha showed him his middle finger which Monkey tagged and peed on. Monkey recognized his “art” and smell and surrendered. The Buddha turned his hand upside down, and his fingers transformed into a mountain chain under which the monkey was jailed for half a millennia. The mountain was sealed by the password: Om Mani Padme Hum, the mantra of the Buddha of Compassion.



In this year, you might find yourself trapped stuck, a bit lost. But remember, the seal of your suffering is nothing more than the mantra of the Buddha of Compassion: Om Mani Padme Hum translated to “the Jewel is in the Lotus.” It means that your imperfections are what makes you perfect. That when you embrace your challenges instead of running away from them, they become your allies.

There was a great deal of unrest in China and Avalokiteśvara, also known as the Buddha of Compassion (Guanyin), decided that the people of China need precious sutras from India, the land in the west, in order to rehabilitate themselves from evil thoughts and deeds. She chose a loyal monk, Tripikata, for the job, but since he was kind of a spiritual nerd, she knew she needs to assign a powerful and brace bodyguard. After all, the wild-west if filled with demons and monsters of all shapes and kinds. Suddenly she thought about Monkey. She liberated him from the mountain and placed a kind of a golden helmet on his head. The moment Monkey even thinks of a magic spell, the helmet squeezes around his skull.  Monkey did a great job protecting the monk with his two buddies, a fat pig a water buffalo.

After he succeeded in his mission, he asked the Buddha of Compassion to take off his helmet, “Don’t your trust me by now?” The Buddha laughed and asked, “Do you trust yourself?” She pointed at Monkey’s head, and when the Monkey reached up he realized he does not have the helmet. In fact it was never there. Remember the Buddha’s Heart Sutra: “Form is Emptiness, Emptiness is Form.” At that moment, Monkey attained enlightenment and was now called (hopefully for the last time) “The Buddha of Victory through Strife.”
This clips is called "Meet the Monkey," and was used by the BBC for the Beijing Olympics. The original music that went with the clip was, well, not to my liking. So I found this version with the soundtrack of of the Pixies that captured the true essence of the Monkey far better...
What Can We Learn from Monkey
The title of the monkey book, “Journey to the West,” reinstates the important lesson of the monkey. West is associated with Western Civilization where the qualities of the renegade, Wild West cowboy, individualist, rebel without a cause, boldly going to where no one has gone before, are admired. Free-will and choice are the pillars of the West. By contrast, in China and the East, family, hierarchy, obedience, responsibility, fate, family, community and country are reinforced. This year is the year of self-development through free-will and individuality. It does not mean self-centeredness or selfishness, but rather emphasizing the original and unique. This year you need to tap into your magic and let go of conformity.
 
Nine and Monkey          
The year 2016 in numerology is 9 (2016= 2+0+1+6=9). Nine is associated with revelation, magic, transformation and death. The ninth sphere in Kabbalah is called “Foundation” and is the sphere of reception, as well as intimacy, sexuality and transformation. The sphere does have a great deal of similarities with the shape-shifting, magic thinking Monkey. In addition, in Chinese astrology, the monkey belongs to the ninth of the Twelve Terrestrial Branches, which symbolizes intense reckless creativity and irresponsible curiosity. In other words, fun. When I looked into the evolution of shape of the digit 9, I found another synchronicity that ties monkey with number 9. Half-way through the number’s development it looked like the @ symbol:    
 


In Greek as well as Bulgarian (and I believe many more languages) the @ signs is named “monkey.” Another funny coincidence happened when I purchased the book I mentioned earlier “Journey to the West.” Take a look at the price I was charged for the title: $9.99. 



So yes, Monkey brings magic, and this year will be a roller-coaster. Next email – coming soon – we will look at the more practical aspects of this year. I first wanted you to familiarize yourself with the myth and concepts of 2016.

As a devoted monkey, I recently wrote a song called "Monkey Weed and Stone," which was inspired by Rumi. My friend Maor Kaplan and Yali Weiss, made this clip for the song:

For more of my music: https://soundcloud.com/gahl-283214462

Hope to see you all monkey around

gahl

Facebook Page: Gahl.Sasson
Instagram: Eye_Witness
Twitter: @Gahl1

KABBALAH WEEKEND RETREAT May 20-22

 
When: 
May 20-22, 2016

 

What is Kabbalah? Why did people from different cultural traditions risk their lives to study it? How can it help us improve our lives today? In Kabbalah it is believed that God used the ten spheres of the Tree of Life as a blueprint to create the universe. By following this same blueprint, we too can create miracles in our own lives.

This in-depth, fun, physical, and experiential workshop will not only allow us to tap into the richness of this ancient spiritual technology, but also it will help us apply it to our everyday lives. Using comparative mysticism, guided meditations, entertaining movie clips, music, movement techniques, and symbolism, we will be shown how to connect to and put into our bodies the ten archetypes of the Tree of Life as well as how to use these energies to foster spiritual, emotional, creative and material growth.

Join the ranks of the spiritual warriors who have basked in this wonderful mystical tradition of light. No prior knowledge of Kabbalah is necessary. The workshop includes storytelling, PowerPoint presentations of biblical art, creative movement, music, and guided meditations with overtone chants.

This weekend retreat will help you connect to the mystical side of the biblical stories, the principles of Kabbalah and how to use this knowledge to change your life. The workshop includes guided meditation in nature to help overcome stress and infuse you with harmony and peace.

Retreat cost: 405$ (includes food and workshop without lodging) to $1595 (all inclusive including a private house)
For the complete list of prices and varied types of accommodations (make sure to check the weekend retreat prices):
http://www.esalen.org/explore/accommodations
To register you can call: 1-888-837-2536. International callers may call our international toll free line: 703-342-0500.
or click on the link: 
http://www.esalen.org/workshop/weekend-may-20-22/kabbalah-and-tree-life-unlocking-secrets-ancient-mystical-traditions


 

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The Year 2016

The Year 2016
KABBALAH WEEKEND WORKSHOP IN ESALEN: MAY 20-May 22
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What's Up with 2016? 

Back in Los Angeles for a month and then off to New York for a workshop on the year 2016 and private astrology reading and past lifetime regression. To book: Gahl@CosmicNavigator.com

Santa Monica, CA - The Astrology or 2016: The Year of the Monkey. Sat, Jan 30th 6pm Golden Bridge Yoga, 719 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90401 Phone:(310) 395-1476 or click HERE
New York, NY - The Astrology of 2016: The Year of the Monkey. Tue, March 1st 7pm Golden Bridge Yoga,  253 Centre St, New York, NY 10013 to register, click HERE or  call (212) 343-8191 For readings, email me at Gahl@CosmicNavigator.com
Andover, MA - March 4 - 7. Circle of Wisdom: 90 Main St, Andover, MA 01810. For astrology readings call (978) 747-8010 or click HERE Workshops: Fri, March 4th 7pm: Astrology of 2016. Register HERE Sat, March 5th 2:30pm Surfing Synchronicities, Why I see 111 Everywhere? Register HERE
  • Esalen, CA - May 20-22 Kabbalah Weekend Retreat: Make Your Dreams Come True With the Tree of Life. More info HERE
What’s Up?

As I often stress in my workshops, there is nothing astrologically significant about Jan. 1. January is named after Janus, the double-headed Roman god of doorways and thresholds, whose dual gaze allows him to view the past and future simultaneously, thus practicing a mythological version of the "power of now." However, on Jan. 1st nothing happens on the celestial level to warrant starting anything, let alone your New Year’s resolution. It is like trying to surf on crystal clear Caribbean beach with not even a ripple. One must wait for a waves if one’s wishes to get anywhere.



The first wave took place on the new moon in Capricorn on Jan. 10, but since Capricorn is associated with hardships and in addition Mercury Retrograde was crowning the New Moon, it was not the most auspicious time to begin your annual wish-fulfillment endeavor. A better swell of energy takes place on the next New Moon which will be on Feb. 8, and it will be in Aquarius, the sign of wishes, hope, and manifestation. So indeed, that is the time to start your resolution. Furthermore, as I will list below, Feb. 8 is the Chinese New Year, so you along with 1.4 billion people can begin something new in your life and actually make it happen.

According to the “Law of Beginning,” which states that the way things begin indicates how they would unfold, the year’s outlook is rather grim. 2016 started with the Chinese stock market showing bearish tendencies, dragging the rest of the world into a panic attack. In addition, the so-called “Arab Winter” initiated a series of speculations about the oil prices descending back to the pits it came from. To make things worse, lone-wolf terrorist attacks around the world continue and will intensify as we move deeper into the Year of the Monkey, which is characterized by individualistic explosive behavior.

For me personally, the year started in an odd way. I happened to be in Tel Aviv, two blocks away from where a terrorist attack took place, and landed in Istanbul a few days after another terrorist attack shook the Mother of all Cities. But on a selfish note, I was hit hard by the departure of my spiritual teacher, the man (alien) I can easily say exerted the most influence over my life, David Bowie. Like many other great teachers (Jesus, Odin, Prometheus), he too suffered from a damaged liver (cancer). May he not rest too long in peace so he can be reborn again and inspire us with his undying love. Amen. I was lucky to be in London when he died, which afforded me the opportunity to go to Brixton, the place he grew up, and place a CD with my music that he influenced in a shrine erected to his honor right next to the Brixton Tube.
 


Mercury Retro Jan 5 – 25

Strong Influence: Capricorn, Cancer, Gemini.
Affects: Confusion, computer glitches, misunderstanding, miscommunication, delays.
Avoid: Signing documents, starting new projects, making big purchases.
Benefits: Editing, reorganizing, visiting old projects, divorce, separation, selling. Doing anything that starts with RE (rearranging, recalculating, rearranging etc.). 

While most years we have three periods of Mercury Retro, 2016 boasts four. As always, during this times all forms of communications go berserk, computers behave like they are possessed by an evil Jinni, and everything takes longer to achieve. If you look at the news, you can see many examples. On the day President Obama declared the lifting of the Iranian sanctions, thus releasing about $100 billion in assets, he also introduced new ones (for ballistic tests). Indeed Retro. Mercury retrograde might have confused the American sailors that found themselves deep in Iranian territorial waters. US Secretary of Defense, Ashton Carter, told the New York Times  that the “sailors made a navigational error into Iranian waters” (Mercury rules travel and navigation). But their swift return might have also been influenced by the retro motion that helped REturn them home.  
 
The Red Fire Monkey: New Moon in Aquarius & Chinese New Year

Strong Influence: Everyone but strongly benefiting Aquarius and fire signs: Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius.
Affects: New beginning, new surge of hope and ability to manifest wishes.
Benefits: Starting new projects, change of mood, optimism, change of direction. New friends, positive associations and better standing in community.



In China, many people avoided having children in 2015 since it was the year of the Sheep, and for some reason the fleece-wearing, peace-loving and artistic members of that sign are not highly regarded, and so, as we shift to the whimsical trouble making Monkey, we can expect a surge of little apes reincarnating. The monkey is a spontaneous, avid martial artist, highly intelligent, ingenious, shape-shifting wizard and is called the “Buddha of Victory over Strife.” As his names suggests, we can expect to be victorious this year but after a period of difficulty and hardship.   

The year of the monkey happens every 12 years, therefore you can go back in time to see how it affected you: Jan. 22, 2004 – Feb. 8, 2005; Feb. 4, 1992 – Jan. 22, 1993; Feb. 16, 1980 – Jan. 4, 1981; Jan. 30, 1968 – Feb. 16, 1969; Feb. 12, 1956 – Jan. 30, 1957.

monkey, as a character, mastered Daoist magic, which granted him immortality, the ability to ride clouds (intelligence, wit but also taking risks), as well as change his name (change identity and shape). He conquered heaven, got super drunk and finally jailed only to be released into the service of the Buddha of Compassion that finally managed to turn him into a decent being. So yes, this year is full of troublemakers, implosive risk-taking behavior, lots of synchronicities and magic, and people acting out of character. My favorite quote from the 16th century book "Monkey: Journey to the West," summarizes this year's teaching. It is the most valuable teaching the monkey received from his stern Daoist master:

“Nothing in this world is difficult, but thinking makes it seems so. Where there is true will, there is always a way.”     

 

Eclipses of March 16 (Pisces) and 23 (Libra)

Strong Influence: Virgo, Pisces, Cancer, Aries, Libra.
Affects: Fear, anxiety, moodiness, processes quickened, emotional swings, fear of abandonment.
Avoid: Starting projects, ask for promotion, apply for a loan or school, buy a new car etc.
Benefits: Resolution of stagnated or fixated situations. Good for yoga, retreat, therapy, experiencing skills you might have had in past lifetime.

The Solar Eclipse on March 8 is a New Moon in Pisces. The realm of intuition and “other worldliness” including dreams and nightmares, visions, psychic hits, addictions and lack of boundary will be experienced more intensely and frequently. Furthermore, expression of fanatical religious behavior which while in the past consisted of campaigns of Inquisition or witch hunts, today promotes terrorism or crazy people shooting in abortion clinics in the name of God. It is not all gloomy as this eclipse could present before you a new teacher or guide. This master can manifest as a new person in your life, a book, a guardian angel, or in a dream.



The eclipse on March 23 is a Lunar Eclipse in Libra that is associated with diplomacy (or the lack of) relationships and justice. It will be an exceptionally tough Full Moon since it at the same day we have a Saturn/Jupiter square causing our lives to experience a tag of war, push and pull between the forces of restriction and expansion.
 


Conclusion
As you can see the year begins with a bumpy ride and there are some other retrogrades in the horizon (Mars from mid-April to end of June) but at the same time, one can argue that the planets propel change and movement. If you are OK with a fast and furious drive, this year can be super fun roller coaster or at least a very transformative and meaningful period…

Shock the monkey to life!!!
 
Facebook Page: Gahl.Sasson
Instagram: Eye_Witness
Twitter: @Gahl1

KABBALAH WEEKEND RETREAT May 20-22

 
When: 
May 20-22, 2016

 

What is Kabbalah? Why did people from different cultural traditions risk their lives to study it? How can it help us improve our lives today? In Kabbalah it is believed that God used the ten spheres of the Tree of Life as a blueprint to create the universe. By following this same blueprint, we too can create miracles in our own lives.

This in-depth, fun, physical, and experiential workshop will not only allow us to tap into the richness of this ancient spiritual technology, but also it will help us apply it to our everyday lives. Using comparative mysticism, guided meditations, entertaining movie clips, music, movement techniques, and symbolism, we will be shown how to connect to and put into our bodies the ten archetypes of the Tree of Life as well as how to use these energies to foster spiritual, emotional, creative and material growth.

Join the ranks of the spiritual warriors who have basked in this wonderful mystical tradition of light. No prior knowledge of Kabbalah is necessary. The workshop includes storytelling, PowerPoint presentations of biblical art, creative movement, music, and guided meditations with overtone chants.

This weekend retreat will help you connect to the mystical side of the biblical stories, the principles of Kabbalah and how to use this knowledge to change your life. The workshop includes guided meditation in nature to help overcome stress and infuse you with harmony and peace.

Retreat cost: 405$ (includes food and workshop without lodging) to $1595 (all inclusive including a private house)
For the complete list of prices and varied types of accommodations (make sure to check the weekend retreat prices):
http://www.esalen.org/explore/accommodations
To register you can call: 1-888-837-2536. International callers may call our international toll free line: 703-342-0500.
or click on the link: 
http://www.esalen.org/workshop/weekend-may-20-22/kabbalah-and-tree-life-unlocking-secrets-ancient-mystical-traditions


 

Follow Gahl

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Happy Holidays & the Origin of Christmas

Happy Holidays & the Origin of Christmas
KABBALAH WEEKEND WORKSHOP IN ESALEN: MAY 20-May 22
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Happy Holidays & the Origin of Christams

Istanbul, Turkey - Workshop Dec 23rd 8:15pm click HERE 
Tel Aviv, Israel - Dec 27 - Jan 6 For readings: Gahl@CosmicNavigator.com workshop Jan 4 8:30pm: register HERE
London, UK - Astrology of 2016 (Friday, Jan 8 7:30pm) and Storytelling (Sat, Jan 9 6pm). To join workshops click HERE   For readings call: 020 3362 3355 or book directly: HERE Video about my visit: HERE
Santa Monica, CA - The Astrology or 2016: The Year of the Monkey. Sat, Jan 30th 6pm Golden Bridge Yoga, 719 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90401 Phone:(310) 395-1476 or click HERE
New York, NY - The Astrology of 2016: The Year of the Monkey. Tue, March 1st 7pm Golden Bridge Yoga,  253 Centre St, New York, NY 10013 to register, click HERE or  call (212) 343-8191 
Esalen, CA - May 20-22 Kabbalah Weekend Retreat: Make Your Dreams Come True With the Tree of Life. More info HERE
Since this year Christmas falls right on the full moon in Cancer, I wanted to dedicate this email to the origin of Christmas focusing on some of the holiday's astrological, psychological, mythological and historical contexts. 

A Big-Bang Story

Let's begin with a question: Can you tell me who is this guy?

He was born 4 BCE in a Roman-occupied land. Before he was born, a supernatural being announced his arrival to his mother announcing he will be a special child, a savoir, wise and powerful. On his Saturn return, he embarked on a teaching tour and handpicked disciples who followed him around. Wait, don't guess...The man preached in parables, encouraged followers to denounce material good and embraced a humble spiritual path therefore making enemies with the orthodoxy. He was a wizard, healed the sick, cast demons out of people, and preformed miracles. His enemies delivered him to the Romans and after his death he returned to his disciples who wrote books about him, spreading his gospel around the Roman empire.

So, did you figure the identity of the man?

No, it's not Jesus of Nazareth. It is Apollonius of Tyana, a Greek Neopythagorean philosopher.



I first heard about him from a wonderful lecture given by the biblical scholar Bart D. Ehrman. Apparently, Apollonius lived and worked in the same time as Jesus and many of their followers interacted and competed over converts. As their fans crossed paths, the followers of the two philosophers wanted to undo each other by arguing whose teacher was more divine, thus slowly exaggerating the tales. It reminds me of a debate I overheard a while back between two boys in the park: 

"My dad can lift me with one hand."  

"So what, my dad can lift me and my sister with one finger." 

After a few minutes of back and forth, their fathers supposedly could lift cars, buses and airplanes. We know of similar conversation between the followers of the two teachers if we compare the gospels of the New Testament. While Mark, the earliest gospel (composed around 40 years after Jesus' death) claims Jesus was born a normal birth, in Luke and Matthew (written 20 years after Mark), we are told Jesus is born from a virgin. In Mark, Jesus suffers on the cross and has doubts about his journey, but in John (written a generation after Mark) Jesus is confident and can't stop talking about himself (I am the light, I am the word, I am salvation) and even goes as far as claiming he was with God as a God when the world was created.

What I am trying to point out is that stories shift and change over time. There is a constant reciprocal relationship between stories, their audience and those who write them. We author stories that eventually author us.  This will be also true about the story of Christmas, the celebration of the savior’s birth. 

The Gospel According to the Stars

Astrology was developed by men and women across many ages and lands, mainly as a tool to help them survive. These early stargazers traced a correlation between the movements of the heavenly bodies and life on earth. Astrology takes the year and divides it into twelve sets of 30 days clustered according to the proportion of light and dark in each day. It calculates the seasons, thus giving humanity a cosmic watch that helps identify the time to plant and the time to reap (Ecclesiastes 3:2). 

According to astrology, the four most important days of the year are the two equinox, when day and night are equal (March 21 and Sep 22) and the two solstices, when day or night is the longest (Dec 21 and July 21). Each of these days initiate a season and begins a sign. The most difficult day both physically and emotionally (in the Northern Hemisphere) is the Winter Solstice, the longest night of the year that also begins the sign Capricorn whose Tarot card is the Devil, representing humanity's collective fear of survival. But while many people view dark or night as evil and day and light as good, Astrology, views that two opposing forces as equally important to sustain life. Similar to the Daoist concept of Yin (black and feminine) and Yang (white and masculine), astrology helps us balance the two primordial forces.

Instead of viewing the relation between dark and night as a cosmic struggle, I like to see the dance between these forces as the relationship between the goddess of night and her son of light, the savoir. Imagine the night to be a beautiful goddess who becomes visibly pregnant on the summer solstice when the sign Cancer begins. Cancer is the sign of pregnancy, the womb, and family. As day after Summer Solstice, the goddess' womb starts growing. On Winter Solstice, the goddess can hardly walk, life stops, she is too heavy, her back aches, and she sighs. He baby is kicking, eager to come out. She must lay down, and life depresses with her. However, on the winter solstice, the goddess gives birth to a tiny child of light (The day is the shortest.). The day after, however, the light starts growing, nursing on his mother's breasts, the savoir grows as his mother's body contracts and the goddess regains her illustrious body.



As this year we will celebrate the full moon on the longest night of the year, this story will have a more powerful affect on us all. On Dec 25th, even if you’re not a Christian, you will be able to tap into the astrological gospel (gospel means "good news") and give birth to your higher-self. The psychological and spiritual message of the day is crystal clear: In the darkest day of the year, when we hit "rock-bottom," that is when the savoir appears. It is in darkness that we find the light of hope. Your seed of salvation for the next year begins Dec 25.

Why December 25?

Santuralia, the celebration of the god Saturn (agricultural deity) was celebrated in Rome between Dec 17-23 based on even earlier Greek festivities called Kornia. The holiday included feasting, gambling and exchanging gifts. In the year 45 BCE, Julius Caesar instituted a new calendar in which Dec 25 was assigned as the winter Solstice. Thus all the pagan holiday that celebrated the birth of the gods of light shifted to Dec 25.



The list of celebrity gods born on the solstice includes: Osiris, Apollo, Atis, Mythras and Horus, just to name a few. In addition, from the year 274 CE, the emperor Aurelian declared Dec 25 as a state holiday of Sol Invictus (unconquered sun). This holiday was very popular among the soldiers and rivaled the rise of Christianity in the empire. Many scholars believe that even though there was no mention of the date or season of Jesus' birth in the bible or any other early sources, the Church fathers decided to position Christmas on Dec 25th since the date was already deeply engraved in people's mental calendar. If the highway is already there, why build a new one? And so, about 400 years after Jesus' birth, the celebration of his nativity was finally instituted. 

Winter Blues and Shopping Therapy

Psychologists concur with astrology and mythology, when they too noticed that as the days shorten, many of us experience winter blues. They call it SAD, an acronym for "Seasonal Affective Disorder." The medicine they propose is simple: the patient needs to be exposed to light. Duh! Our wise ancestors came up with a similar solution. The Germanic tribes celebrated Yule, when on winter solstice, fathers and son were encouraged to light bonfires and bring light in the darkest night. The Jews celebrated Hanukkah by lighting eight candles. Yalda: Shab-e Chelleh was the Iranian's version of this celebration.

I am writing this email from Istanbul, a Muslim country, and yet, even here, the streets, malls, and parks are filled with lights bulbs, LED and neon lights, all attempting a modern, commercial twist of light therapy. Of course, in the last century we added a capitalist flare by encouraging a shopping spree for the ancient gift exchange that begun in Saturnalia. Yes, giving and receiving makes us feel better, especially when it is done around an evergreen tree in our living room. After all, it is the Tree of Life, and Kabbalah in Hebrew means receiving. So to make this Christmas more "Kabbalistic," maybe you and your family can decide to cap the amount of money allowed to be spent on each gift, which will force us to be more creative and spend more time thinking or creating the gift. Give our friends and family what they really need, not what they think they want...  



Conclusion

This upcoming Dec 25, we have a convergence of astrology and Christmas, with the full moon falling right on Christmas. A serendipity that reminds us of the ancient origin of the holidays of light. I suggest clearing some time on the full moon and imagine how out of the full moon, something new will be born in your life that will take shape as the days grow. It can be a new project, a relationship, a home, a family, healing or just a state of well-being. With the full moon on Dec 25 comes to you on special deliver from thousands of years ago, a savoir god, the sun, light and happiness. 

I wish you a happy birthing and wonderful spiritual gifts. 

Happy Solstice, and lightful Christmas!

gahl
 
Facebook Page: Gahl.Sasson
Instagram: Eye_Witness
Twitter: @Gahl1

KABBALAH WEEKEND RETREAT May 20-22

 
When: 
May 20-22, 2016

 

What is Kabbalah? Why did people from different cultural traditions risk their lives to study it? How can it help us improve our lives today? In Kabbalah it is believed that God used the ten spheres of the Tree of Life as a blueprint to create the universe. By following this same blueprint, we too can create miracles in our own lives.

This in-depth, fun, physical, and experiential workshop will not only allow us to tap into the richness of this ancient spiritual technology, but also it will help us apply it to our everyday lives. Using comparative mysticism, guided meditations, entertaining movie clips, music, movement techniques, and symbolism, we will be shown how to connect to and put into our bodies the ten archetypes of the Tree of Life as well as how to use these energies to foster spiritual, emotional, creative and material growth.

Join the ranks of the spiritual warriors who have basked in this wonderful mystical tradition of light. No prior knowledge of Kabbalah is necessary. The workshop includes storytelling, PowerPoint presentations of biblical art, creative movement, music, and guided meditations with overtone chants.

This weekend retreat will help you connect to the mystical side of the biblical stories, the principles of Kabbalah and how to use this knowledge to change your life. The workshop includes guided meditation in nature to help overcome stress and infuse you with harmony and peace.

Retreat cost: 405$ (includes food and workshop without lodging) to $1595 (all inclusive including a private house)
For the complete list of prices and varied types of accommodations (make sure to check the weekend retreat prices):
http://www.esalen.org/explore/accommodations
To register you can call: 1-888-837-2536. International callers may call our international toll free line: 703-342-0500.
or click on the link: 
http://www.esalen.org/workshop/weekend-may-20-22/kabbalah-and-tree-life-unlocking-secrets-ancient-mystical-traditions


 

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Happy New Moon in Scorpio

Happy New Moon in Scorpio
KABBALAH WEEKEND WORKSHOP IN ESALEN: MAY 20-May 22
View this email in your browser
FREE CONTENT
ABOUT
BOOKS
PRESS
GET A READING

Monkey Weed & Stone

Istanbul, Turkey - Nov 24 - Dec 9. For workshop click HERE for readings info contact nur@butikyayincilik.com
Sofia, BulgariaDec 9-16 for workshops click HERE for readings: Office@Kibea.net
Tel Aviv, Israel - Dec 27 - Jan 6 For readings: Gahl@CosmicNavigator.com
London, UK - Astrology of 2016 (Friday, Jan 8 7:30pm) and Storytelling (Sat, Jan 9 6pm). To join workshops click HERE   For readings call: 020 3362 3355 or book directly: HERE Video about my visit: HERE
Santa Monica, CA - The Astrology or 2016: The Year of the Monkey. Sat, Jan 30th 6pm Golden Bridge Yoga, 719 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90401 Phone:(310) 395-1476
New York, NY - The Astrology of 2016: The Year of the Monkey. Tue, March 1st 7pm Golden Bridge Yoga,  253 Centre St, New York, NY 10013 Phone:(212) 343-8191 
Esalen, CA - May 20-22 Kabbalah Weekend Retreat: Make Your Dreams Come True With the Tree of Life. More info HERE

Monkey Weed & Stone

Happy New Moon in Scorpio! The sign of intimacy, sexuality, passion, magic, occult, death and resurrection. Today, as well as tomorrow, the phoenix is rising! Before I begin, I wanted to let you know that I'm about to embark on a charting/lecturing tour to Istanbul, Bulgaria, Israel and UK. Check my schedule to see if you are in the same place in the same time, it will be great to cross paths. The Kabbalah weekend retreat this year will take place May 20-22 at Esalen, CA. So start making travel plans…

Since we are under the influence of Scorpio the sign of death and rebirth, I wanted to share with you a song I wrote about these subjects which I just finished. The seed to the lyrics and tune was given to me in one of the workshops on reincarnation and past lifetime regression I lead. In these classes, to illustrate the concept that death is not the end, I quote from the words of my favorite poet, Jalāl ad-Dīn Rūmī. He has a wonderful poem that eloquently captures the notion of how death helps our soul grow, just as our computers need to reboot for the updates to take effect... Here is the Rumi poem, which was translated by A.J Arberry, that inspired my lyrics:

I died as a mineral and became a plant, 
I died as plant and rose to animal, 
I died as animal and I was Man. 
Why should I fear? When was I less by dying?
 
Yet once more I shall die as Man, to soar 
With angels blest; but even from angelhood, 
I must pass on: all except God doth perish. 
When I have sacrificed my angel-soul, 
I shall become what no mind e'er conceived.
 
Oh, let me not exist! For Non-existence
Proclaims in organ tones, 'To Him we shall return.'

    
Every time I read these words in my workshops, I could see their magic work on the participants. Especially the line: when was I less by dying? And so I decided to write my musical version of the poem. Improvisation on the death theme, if you like. Before I share it, I wanted to make sure you know I am not a musician, I can hardly read notes and when I sat down to put the sounds and lyrics together, I didn’t even know what key the song was in. But funny enough, it turned out to be G which is the scale of Scorpio.
 
The song is called "Monkey Weed and Stone." Since I was born in the year of the monkey, I felt I should honor my lineage. In addition from Feb 8th 2016, we are coming into the year of the monkey so the timing is perfect. The song, you can say, is what some would call a “spiritual autobiography.”
 
I wanted to thanks my young/old friends Sofia and Oliver for providing the “human sounds,” as they negotiate turns on the harness swing. The lyrics are below the link. 

Here is the mp3 file:

https://gallery.mailchimp.com/29caaeae0d13471b1035629c9/files/MWS_MASTER.mp3

Or if it does not work, try this one:

http://cosmicnavigator.com/node/1646
 
Monkey Weed & Stone by Gahl Sasson
 
I died as a stone when Pele raised Kauai,
But soon after reborn, a weed on Mt Sinai,
Then eaten by a grazing goat, reborn into a furry coat...
 
I was born a monkey, a monkey on a tree.
 


When was I less by dying?
When was I less by losing myself?
 
I climbed to the top of a pregnant tree,
To gaze at the stars above the canopy,
At awe, I tripped and smashed on the ground,
Monkey dead! I'm making human sounds.

 
           
I'm a (hu)man born of a monkey weed and stone.
 
When was I less by dying?
When was I less by losing myself?
Soon I will shed my human form,
A winged angel I shall be reborn.
And even the angel, I will let go,
to be at one with the one that I know...
 
Cause I'm a (hu)man born of a monkey weed and stone.

 
In addition, I wanted to recommend a great book about grieving, death, and reincarnation, written by my friend Claire Bidwell Smith entitled: “After This.” Please check it out, it is remarkable and fits the spirit of the season as well as the New Moon in Scorpio...



Love, 
gahl

KABBALAH WEEKEND RETREAT May 20-22

 
When: 
May 20-22, 2016

 

What is Kabbalah? Why did people from different cultural traditions risk their lives to study it? How can it help us improve our lives today? In Kabbalah it is believed that God used the ten spheres of the Tree of Life as a blueprint to create the universe. By following this same blueprint, we too can create miracles in our own lives.

This in-depth, fun, physical, and experiential workshop will not only allow us to tap into the richness of this ancient spiritual technology, but also it will help us apply it to our everyday lives. Using comparative mysticism, guided meditations, entertaining movie clips, music, movement techniques, and symbolism, we will be shown how to connect to and put into our bodies the ten archetypes of the Tree of Life as well as how to use these energies to foster spiritual, emotional, creative and material growth.

Join the ranks of the spiritual warriors who have basked in this wonderful mystical tradition of light. No prior knowledge of Kabbalah is necessary. The workshop includes storytelling, PowerPoint presentations of biblical art, creative movement, music, and guided meditations with overtone chants.

This weekend retreat will help you connect to the mystical side of the biblical stories, the principles of Kabbalah and how to use this knowledge to change your life. The workshop includes guided meditation in nature to help overcome stress and infuse you with harmony and peace.

Retreat cost: 405$ (includes food and workshop without lodging) to $1595 (all inclusive including a private house)
For the complete list of prices and varied types of accommodations (make sure to check the weekend retreat prices):
http://www.esalen.org/explore/accommodations
To register you can call: 1-888-837-2536. International callers may call our international toll free line: 703-342-0500.
or click on the link: 
http://www.esalen.org/workshop/weekend-may-20-22/kabbalah-and-tree-life-unlocking-secrets-ancient-mystical-traditions


 

Follow Gahl

Copyright © 2015 Light Enterprises, All rights reserved.
 You are receiving this newsletter because You opted in at Cosmicnavigator.com

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Your Imperfections Make you Perfect

Your Imperfections Make you Perfect
KABBALAH WEEKEND WORKSHOP IN ESALEN: MAY 20-May 22
View this email in your browser
FREE CONTENT
ABOUT
BOOKS
PRESS
GET A READING

Chiron Part III

Istanbul, Turkey - Nov 24 - Dec 9. For workshop click HERE for readings info contact nur@butikyayincilik.com
Sofia, Bulgaria - Dec 9-16 for workshops click HERE for readings: Office@Kibea.net
Tel Aviv, Israel - Dec 27 - Jan 6 For readings: Gahl@CosmicNavigator.com
London, UK - Astrology of 2016 (Friday, Jan 8 7:30pm) and Storytelling (Sat, Jan 9 6pm). To join workshops click HERE   For readings call: 020 3362 3355 
Esalen, CA - May 20-22 Kabbalah Weekend Retreat: Make Your Dreams Come True With the Tree of Life. More info HERE

Chiron Part III

Myths, are true stories that never happened. And yet, these stories, which transcend space (where they originated) and time (when they were conceived) can help us not only understand our lives but also improve and empower our existence. This is the third and last part of the Chiron newsletters. The other two: Chiron I, and Chiron II



Creativity, in different traditions, is view as the ultimate act of “imitatio dei,” Latin for “imitation of God.” However, in order to create, one needs a canvas of sort, an empty slate, an emptiness. To reach that state of nullification, many of us resort to self-destruction. Our choice of tools and methods for reaching that place of self annihilation and the emptiness that follows, may differ. We might choose to escape through drugs, sugar, carbs, work, destructive relationships etc. Each of us, harbors an imperfection, a shadow, something that blocks us, resists and pushes back. That force allows us to attract and equal and opposite one, which manifests as our creativity. And our creative force is what makes us perfect. Our imitation of God, creator. Keeping the balance between light and dark, is not only part of being human, it is what defines us.

The wounded healer embodies this balance of light and dark, joy and pain, divine and human. It was his wound and imperfections that made him a perfect healer and teacher. He gained his immortality because of his deadly afflictions. The myth ensures us that the gods will grant us immortality when we recognize, accept, and assimilate our shadow. Our true potential dwell in our shadow. It is clothed in our imperfection.

Think again of Chiron who was abandoned by his mother because she thought he looked hideous. What can be a worse wound to a baby than the rejection and scorn of his mother, who after seeing her newborn begged the gods to transform her to a tree so that no one will ever say her son "looks like his mother." But because of this wound, Artemis and Apollo adopted him. The message is clear: right when we feel abandoned and lonely due to our imperfections, the Moon and the Sun take us under their light-feathered wings.


Examples:

What makes your favorite pair of jeans perfect? Not the fact that their are impeccable denim. The compliments you get are most likely due to their imperfections, the rips, distress, tears etc. We pay a lot of money for people in the denim factory to take a perfectly beautiful material and make them seem old, worn out, and stressed!



Why do one million people a year come to a small town in Italy called Pisa? these tourists from all around the globe are not interested in the beautiful white and perfectly built cathedral, but rather in its crooked 4 degrees tilted freestanding bell-tower. Why would anyone travel long distances to marvel at an imperfect building? There is controversy regarding the original designer of the worldwide known tower. Some say he fled the city when his fatal mistake was discovered. Fled? Ran away? Why? He should have the main boulevard of the city named after him. Without his mistake the city would have probably drifted into obscurity. He single-handedly secured Pisa's economy for centuries with his imperfect calculations.



Iwao Takamoto was born in the City of Angels but since his family was Japanese, they were sent to an interment camp in WWII. This imperfect incarceration turned to be perfect for the young man as it was there he discovered art and was taught the secrets of Japanese animation. He later became a renowned animator, director and producer of shows in Disney (Sleeping Beauty) Hanna Barbera (Scooby-Doo) and Warner Brothers. While working at Hanna-Barbera, Mr Takamoto was asked to develop a lovable dog character that could be appeal to a worldwide audience. In other words, they wanted a dog everyone could love. Well, what better dog breed than a Great Dane, after all, they are great. But what Takamoto did is unexpected, here it is in his own words:



A Great Dane breeder "talked [to me] about the important points of a Great Dane, like a straight back, straight legs, small chin and such. I decided to go the opposite and gave [Scooby-Doo] a hump back, bowed legs, big chin and such. Even his colour is wrong."

Takamoto created an imperfect Great Dane. If these dogs are known for their bravery, he made Scooby a coward. If they have a deep reverberating bark, he made Scooby's dissonance and awkward. Takamoto created the most famous dog in cartoons by bringing out his imperfections. Why? Cause it gave birth to a perfect character that resonates with kids across space and time.
  
Conclusion

Old myths and new myths alike, imperfections turns out to be perfections. I hope this inspires you to dig deep into your shadow and liberate your perfections by accepting and loving your imperfections. What better time to do that while the Sun transits through Scorpio, the sign of death, the underworld, magic and transformation.  

Love, 
gahl

KABBALAH WEEKEND RETREAT May 20-22

 
When: 
May 20-22, 2016

 

What is Kabbalah? Why did people from different cultural traditions risk their lives to study it? How can it help us improve our lives today? In Kabbalah it is believed that God used the ten spheres of the Tree of Life as a blueprint to create the universe. By following this same blueprint, we too can create miracles in our own lives.

This in-depth, fun, physical, and experiential workshop will not only allow us to tap into the richness of this ancient spiritual technology, but also it will help us apply it to our everyday lives. Using comparative mysticism, guided meditations, entertaining movie clips, music, movement techniques, and symbolism, we will be shown how to connect to and put into our bodies the ten archetypes of the Tree of Life as well as how to use these energies to foster spiritual, emotional, creative and material growth.

Join the ranks of the spiritual warriors who have basked in this wonderful mystical tradition of light. No prior knowledge of Kabbalah is necessary. The workshop includes storytelling, PowerPoint presentations of biblical art, creative movement, music, and guided meditations with overtone chants.

This weekend retreat will help you connect to the mystical side of the biblical stories, the principles of Kabbalah and how to use this knowledge to change your life. The workshop includes guided meditation in nature to help overcome stress and infuse you with harmony and peace.

Retreat cost: 405$ (includes food and workshop without lodging) to $1595 (all inclusive including a private house)
For the complete list of prices and varied types of accommodations (make sure to check the weekend retreat prices):
http://www.esalen.org/explore/accommodations
To register you can call: 1-888-837-2536. International callers may call our international toll free line: 703-342-0500.
or click on the link: 
http://www.esalen.org/workshop/weekend-may-20-22/kabbalah-and-tree-life-unlocking-secrets-ancient-mystical-traditions


 

Follow Gahl

Copyright © 2015 Light Enterprises, All rights reserved.
 You are receiving this newsletter because You opted in at Cosmicnavigator.com

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