American Institute of Vedic Studies

2020 and its Dangers for Humanity

We are all looking with deep concern about the current state of the world and what is happening today, which continues to surprise, confound and agitate us. The division and conflict on every continent is easy to see, but how to resolve it remains bewildering. While we should not give in to doomsday feelings, we must take the situation seriously and counter it on both inner and outer levels.

 

We are entering globally into what I have called “A New Time of Troubles”, which I predicted in 2009 would begin in 2020. Yet spiritual benefits and a deeper civilizational growth may eventually emerge after this difficult and trying period of uncertainty and turbulence that forces us to restore our harmony with nature and our inner Self.

 

In October 2010, Yogini Shambhavi and I spoke at the “World Conference for Mundane Astrology” in Vishakhapatnam, India, hosted by Sri Sadguru Sivananda Murty, one of India’s greatest yogis and sages, and a great astrologer (who took his Mahasamadhi in 2015). The conference addressed the issue of 2012, regarded by many as an epochal year, and the future of humanity. In that conference I first spoke of 2020 as marking a New Time of Troubles for Humanity. Now that we are experiencing 2020, I wanted to share my comments and predictions that I have updated since 2010.

 


Prospects of Global Change

 

Clearly we are in a time of great challenges in terms of ecology, technology and societal changes that are shaking the moorings of what we regard as world civilization. While there is no end of the world in sight, the negative karmas of our civilization out of balance are strongly manifesting, until we deal with them in a  responsible manner. For this new global karmic rectification the wisdom of Vedic knowledge systems, notably Yoga, Vedanta, Ayurveda and Vedic astrology remains crucial and can lead us to a transformative future.

 

Our civilization will likely experience several years of turbulence, uncertainty, and confusion before a clear light emerges for humanity overall. One could call this upcoming period in the twenty-first century a “New Time of Troubles” – an extended period of obstacles during which we are forced to change the values of our civilization that is far removed from nature and the Divine Self within us.

 

Calamities, both manmade and natural, are likely to increase, as well as increased physical and psychological vulnerability in society. Yet even if these difficulties are only as much as in previous centuries, they can be more significant in their consequences as a larger and more vulnerable population will be exposed to their dangers. The ultimate result of this new churning process should be an ecologically sustainable culture and a new global era of peace and yogic spirituality, with a new compassionate science, humanism and cultural renaissance reflecting dharmic values. The coronavirus is a key indicator of this process but not the only factor.

 

Until such a higher change occurs, we may see an increasing Brave New World scenario of media, high tech and drug-based social control, social disruption, terrorism, new diseases and epidemics, and population displacement if not decline. The organic basis of human life will be compromised and people made uncertain as to who they are, what life means or what their purpose should be.

 

We must not just restore the Earth outwardly at an ecological level, but must restore our inner ecology and honor the forces of nature within us, such as Ayurveda teaches us. This requires understanding the doshas, gunas and karmas within us and restoring the organic basis of our physical life and social order, including the individual, family and spiritual communities. There is a greater danger of new physical and psychological diseases as our individual immune systems decline along with the disruption of our natural environment.

 


Astrological Indications – Conjunction with the Galactic Center

 

Overall, the main astrological event dominating our times remains the conjunction of the the point of the winter solstice with the galactic center, an important point of karmic purification and rectification, which I noted in my book Astrology of the Seers in 1990. However, this conjunction with the galactic center is an influence of several decades, which cannot be reduced to a particular year.

 

The great Yogi Paramahansa Yogananda in his special Yuga theory, which he derived from his guru Sri Yukteswar, indicated that humanity has moved astrologically from the dark age of Kali Yuga to the brighter age of Dwapara, a process completed around 1900 AD with the notable technological gains of that time. This may cause us to raise our hopes in the current historical situation.

 

However, Yogananda noted that Dwapara Yuga can be a dangerous period in which the development of new technologies can proceed faster than our wisdom to handle them, with our minds still in the shadow of old Kali Yuga belief systems. This situation creates high tech Dwapara based wars and calamities that are more dangerous than those under Kali Yuga, which had limited humanity’s resources and weapons. Such a disturbed initial Dwapara Yuga is what we are seeing today.

 

As I mentioned in previous writings, the first subperiod of Dwapara from 1900 – 2100 is its dark or Kali phase. We are now in the middle of this. The dangers of Dwapara Yuga should not be underestimated, particularly during these initial phases, as we experienced in the twentieth century with World War I, World War II and the Cold War, which were Dwapara type technological conflicts. Our new media and high tech conflicts and confrontations are also new Dwapara events.

 

We are also likely in the Kali Yuga of a longer cycle that is still casting its shadows upon us. While the long term trend may be more positive in some ways this can take more decades to fully manifest.

 


Increasing Difficulties for Humanity

 

One does not have to be an astrologer to see the difficulties facing the world today. The exploitation of our lands, ecosystems, air and water, has reached a breaking point.  Similarly, the manipulation of human beings through the mass media, cell phones, computers, multinational corporations, social and government agencies, and the widespread use of both recreational and medicinal drugs, is also creating extensive psychological malaise, disorientation, and alienation. Various types of physical and psychological toxins abound in our environment that even a healthy person cannot avoid.

 

Our economic systems are in danger of decline, if not collapse, through excessive borrowing, spending, speculation, and a reckless use of other people’s money by banks, corporations and governments. Many people are living on credit that offers little security. Our population is outstripping its essential resources of food, water, land and jobs.  Many countries  are caught in civil unrest extending into unending civil wars in some instances.

 

We see a lack of responsible leadership and a dearth of great leaders in the world, with few notable exceptions. Political parties aim at short-term electoral gains and inflame identity politics, divisive vote banks and religious extremism. We now look to technocrats to guide us, but an ability to develop new technologies cannot be regarded as the wisdom to guide society. It is often connected to vested economic and political interests and new powerful social control potentials. Overall our civilization, with its high degree of centralization and interdependency, remains more vulnerable than previous eras. Now a major war, environmental, health or economic disaster in one country can send off shock waves that can disrupt the entire world order.

 

Yet we must a remember that each century for humanity has produced major challenges that the next century seems to quickly forget. The twentieth century had two enormous world wars that resulted in the killing of a hundred million people worldwide, with the most extensive losses in highly civilized Europe – compared to which our twenty-first-century conflicts so far appear minor. Science and technology continued to develop and the scars of these twentieth world wars were quickly covered with new cities and peace between the hostile countries.

 

As a counter trend, there continues to be a growing movement towards higher consciousness in humanity, though in the background and subject to distortion. The global spread of dharmic traditions, Yoga, Vedanta, Buddhism and meditation, mystical approaches, native traditions, alternative, and natural medicine like Ayurveda reflects this. Pro-environment and ecological forces are gaining greater influence in government and business circles.  The new social media is providing an alternative voice to the mainstream mass media and its vested interests that so far had a monopoly. Yet at the same time, adharmic and unspiritual forces are getting more powerful and sophisticated, spreading through the media and promoting violence, determined to cause  disruption. The battleground between these opposite forces is developing.

 


What Do We See for the Future?

 

A difficult Kalasarpa or Serpent of Time Yoga (combination with all the planets located between the lunar nodes Rahu and Ketu) has marked 2020 with epidemic disease, psychological malaise, paranoia, civil unrest and social change, with a new idealism in some places and old prejudices in others. It will decline somewhat over time but there will be new challenges throughout this year, which is likely to be set the tone of the future century.

 

Presently as of September 2020 this Kalasarpa Yoga has come to an end by way of transits but its influence remains in the yearly charts. Other difficult astrological combinations are coming as well. The winter solstice of December 2020 is marked by a Saturn-Jupiter conjunction and solar eclipse, with Jupiter near its maximum point of debility, showing the danger of large scale political and economic turmoil or division, which will likely influence the next twenty years until the following Jupiter-Saturn conjunction. The contentious American presidential election of November 2020 occurs just before this.

 

We are looking to a new post-covid world order but uncertain if it will bring spiritual freedom or simply greater social control. A new economic order is required as jobs continue to disappear, with many becoming automated or computerized. Schools and universities are going online, reducing their physical presence. New creative thinking is required, not simply getting caught in negativity or emotional reaction.

 

This new global time of troubles that is likely to last for several decades, and cannot be dealt with in a simplistic manner or with short-term action plans. These global problems have already started in 2001 with global terrorism and 2008 with economic dangers. 2020-2028 will be a period of increased disruptions at government and economic levels, with continuing refugee problems and failed states. 2028-2044 will continue these, perhaps at a more severe level, but with stronger countermeasures.

 

By 2050, the worst may be over, but the shadow of these events may color the remainder of the century. These issues are generational, not simply a matter of a few years. The end of the century should see a considerable drop in the global population, both by outer problems or better population control. Whether what remains afterward will be a Brave New World or a real new yogic spiritual era is debatable.

 

Science and technology have proved to be a two-edged sword, raising standards of living but increasing artificial desires, developing better communication but causing a greater polarization in society. Our older organized belief-based religions have failed, carrying on medieval creedal divisions as if these could provide a solution for all humanity. Dharmic traditions with their emphasis on a universal Consciousness show the way forward.

 

There will be a continuing growing interest in higher consciousness, meditation, Yoga, Vedanta, Ayurveda and natural healing, Hinduism, Buddhism and Taoism, the seeds of which have already been cast in the global consciousness, including in the educated elite. Most countries will have spiritual movements and a visionary aspiration in a few. Hopefully, the new spiritual elite can overcome the Asuric (egoistic) tendencies of our current culture and bring in more compassion and devotion.

 

And always hope must remain. Though the negative forces or Asuras usually have the advantage in this material world, which is their obsession, the Devas or Divine energies can overcome them at the level of the heart, and can win at the end, even when realistic scenarios look bleak.

 

India remains a target for negative adharmic forces as usual but has been developing a new dharmic strength over the last ten years that can hopefully hold steady through these storms. If so, India can be a guide for all humanity how to integrate science and consciousness-based spirituality.

 

In any case, humanity is in for a great deal of turbulence in the years to come. The question is if the nobility of the true human spirit, like the lotus, can surface in this mire. At least to some extent, it will, as it always does. The individual can always transcend, even if society cannot.

 

We can only spread the message of higher humanity – and look to the cosmic powers to enlighten or chastise our species as our karmas may dictate. We must remain patient during this long term churning process and sustain the eternal light! Then even the limitations of collective karma can be overcome.

 

The higher powers are looking for more individuals to aid in this work, which has great blessings for all. May everyone take up that call! This is a call not simply to be a social activist but to be a center for bringing a higher awareness into the world, however one is capable of doing that.

 

Vamadeva

Latest Articles
Articles on Vedic Counseling

Embodied Mind and Transcendent Consciousness

We human beings are embodied creatures defined by our birth in a particular physical body as indicating our real identity and the focus of our lives. Our minds are not only located in the body but ruled by an entire set of bodily needs, imperatives, appearances and actions and their

Read More »
Articles by Yogini Shambhavi

Kali as the Yuga Shakti: the Power to Create a New World Age

By Yogini Shambhavi   As the great power of time, Kali’s Shakti creates the different Yugas or world ages that humanity passes through during the long cycles of cosmic evolution. Kali is the Goddess of eternity watching over all our temporal changes and facilitating those which promote our inner growth.

Read More »
Articles on Vedic Counseling

Comparison and the Incomparable Self

Your inner Self (Atman) and true nature cannot be compared to anything. It has no name, form or action, no shape, size or color. It is beyond all elements and qualities of nature. It is beyond body and mind, time and appearance altogether. It dwells within everything yet is not

Read More »
Articles on Ayurveda

Shiva Ayurveda – The Yogic Power of Healing and Transformation

Most Ayurvedic practitioners look upon Lord Dhanvantari, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, as the deity of Ayurveda and ideal doctor. Certainly that is an important tradition worthy of following based on profound Puranic stories and symbolism. Yet in the Rigveda, the oldest Vedic text, and Shruti or book of mantric

Read More »
Articles on Vedic Astrology

Winter Solstice, Galactic Center and New Time of Troubles

I have been writing for some years about 2020 as indicating the beginning of a “New Time of Troubles” for humanity, dangerous from 2020-2028, but continuing long beyond that. This relates astronomically to the Winter Solstice point transiting the Galactic Center in the constellation of Sagittarius. It is difficult to

Read More »
Articles on Yoga

The Ancient Yoga of the Sun

For the Winter Solstice December 21, which marks the rebirth of the Sun and Agni What if the most powerful force for energizing all Yoga practices were as obvious and visible as the Sun? The fact is that it is. The Sun, properly understood not merely as an outer but

Read More »
Articles on Yoga

Yoga as Samadhi

Yoga is defined as Samadhi in the Yoga Sutras. Yet few Yoga practitioners know what Samadhi is or how to approach it. But without understanding Samadhi one cannot understand Yoga in the true sense of the term. Samadhi is complete coherence and composure of mind, the mind fully united with

Read More »
Articles on Yoga

Yoga Nidra according to Adi Shankara

Yoga Nidra is a popular topic today but seldom taken to the depth that it is presented with in the Vedantic teachings. Here we will examine it according to the views of the great teacher, Shankara.   Adi Shankara or Shankaracharya is the most lauded exponent of Advaita or non-dualistic

Read More »
Articles on Yoga

Why Sri Krishna is the Avatar of Yoga

Sri Krishna is the only human guru and incarnation of Vishnu called Yogavatara or the Avatar of Yoga, and Yogeshvara or the Lord of Yoga. The Bhagavad Gita remains the most important and foundational Yoga Shastra or definitive Yoga text. To understand Yoga one must understand Sri Krishna, his life,

Read More »
INTERNATIONALLY BEST SELLING

Follow Dr David Frawley on social media @

Ayurvedic Healing Course

Take a comprehensive, yet affordable distance learning program in Ayurvedic healing, providing a vast set of resources, presented with clarity and depth. It is an excellent and accessible place to start your journey into Ayurveda from wherever you may be, and yet will take you very far. Our Ayurvedic Healing course covers mind-body constitution, daily health regimens, doshic imbalances, dietary and herbal treatment, sensory therapies and internal practices of Yoga and meditation. Our course aims to bring the deeper teachings of Ayurveda to everyone at an affordable price, whether for self-healing or helping others. It is connected to the classic books on Ayurveda of Dr. David Frawley. An internationally renowned course taken by over ten thousand people worldwide over the last thirty years, the course remains one of the best ways to learn Ayurveda both at a personal level and as a foundation for deeper study. Let the wisdom of Ayurveda transform your life and broaden your awareness!

Learn more and Signup Here »

Ayurvedic Astrology Course

Learn the secrets of Vedic astrology as taught relative to the healing powers of Ayurveda. View your birth chart to determine your Ayurvedic mind-body constitution according to their planetary connections, and promote longevity yoga and Self-realization. Learn how to read Vedic charts to help others recognize and optimize their karmas to fulfill their dharma. Study the teachings Dr. David Frawley (Pandit Vamadeva Shastri), a master educator in Vedic astrology and Ayurveda of worldwide renown. This course has helped pioneered Vedic astrology in the West and made it accessible to all serious students. Join in this Vedic movement to connect to the universe, the stars and planets, within you!

Learn more and Signup Here »

Yoga, Ayurveda, Mantra & Meditation Course

Take an inspiring online program on classical Yoga and traditional Ayurveda for body, mind and consciousness. Learn how to heal yourself according to a higher awareness that you can share with all! This many-sided course covers all eight limbs of Yoga according to Ayurvedic principles, from asana and pranayama to deeper practices of mantra and meditation. It teaches an Ayurvedic Yoga approach for the full unfoldment of our inner awareness. It shares the secrets of Jnana Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Karma Yoga, the Yogas of knowledge, devotion and action, in the context of a greater Raja Yoga. Study with one of the world’s leading experts and Acharyas in the field of Yoga and Ayurveda. Dr. David Frawley (Pandit Vamadeva Shastri), linking yourself with authentic traditions going back to the Vedic Seers.

Learn more and Signup Here »
Learn Ayurvedic Astrologywith Dr David Frawley

Learn the greater wisdom of Ayurveda & Vedic Astrology (Ayurvedic Astrology) with internationally acclaimed scholar on the subject - Dr David Frawley (Acharya Vamadeva Shastri). Get a special limited time discount - sale ends shortly.

Layer 1