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An alternative to Astrological Bangles

It’s hard to get out of bed some days. As the world changes it becomes overwhelming to hear about all the hate that is rapidly spreading. Despite this though life has gotten better. It’s better than it was 20 years ago, 50 years ago, 100 etc., That doesn’t mean it can’t go backwards. This is why it is so important we are the best we can be and work positively to influence change. It is for these reasons that I have spent the last three years researching and testing alternatives to Paramahansa Yogananda’s Astrological Bangle. This amulet is both cumbersome and expensive. Expecting anyone on a spiritual path to be able to fork over $1000 to $2800 USD for one is madness or worse spiritual materialism.

Paramahansa Yogananda first gave mention of the astrological bangle in his book “Autobiography of a Yogi” The book was first published in 1946. In 1946 the price of gold per troy ounce was $38.25 the equivalent inflationary price of $512.55 at time of writing this. The total cost to get an astrological bangle then would have been no less than about $525.00. This is significantly cheaper than today’s actual cost to have a bangle produced, which at the time of writing this is between $2100 – $2200. A price many people would struggle to scrape together, charge on a credit card, or have to forgo all together.


I’m sure if Yogananda had known the impact the Astrological Bangle would have had on his readers perhaps he would have omitted or lessened the importance of the tool. Alas, such was not the case. Currently there are no alternatives to the gold, silver, and copper bangle. This is why I have taken it upon myself to identify a much more affordable alternative. Because, if it were the will of God that everyone should have such a tool to aid in their spiritual journey then it should be affordable to all. There is brief mention of alternatives which I will get into another day but here is the excerpt by Sri Yuketswar.

“All human ills arise from some transgression of universal law. The scriptures point out that man must satisfy the laws of nature, while not discrediting the divine omnipotence. He should say: ‘Lord, I trust in Thee, and know Thou canst help me, but I too will do my best to undo any wrong I have done.’ By a number of means — by prayer, by will power, by yoga meditation, by consultation with saints, by use of astrological bangles — the adverse effects of past wrongs can be minimized or nullified.

“Just as a house can be fitted with a copper rod to absorb the shock of lightning, so the bodily temple can be benefited by various protective measures. Ages ago our yogis discovered that pure metals emit an astral light which is powerfully counteractive to negative pulls of the planets. Subtle electrical and magnetic radiations are constantly circulating in the universe; when a man’s body is being aided, he does not know it; when it is being disintegrated, he is still in ignorance. Can he do anything about it?”

“This problem received attention from our rishis; they found helpful not only a combination of metals, but also of plants and — most effective of all — faultless jewels of not less than two carats. The preventive uses of astrology have seldom been seriously studied outside of India. One little-known fact is that the proper jewels, metals, or plant preparations are valueless unless the required weight is secured, and unless these remedial agents are worn next to the skin.”

The Research

In order to find an alternative, I would need to get all three metals in pure form on their own. Easier said than done as the cost of pure gold is relatively prohibitive with my limited budget. One by one I assessed each metal. As long as I can remember I have been able to feel the energy in objects, and living things. It is a skill I’ve had decades to hone. It would be this skill that allows me to find an alternative. I will describe each metal and its corresponding energy but it is a lot like describing flavors to someone with no taste buds.

The first item and the most easily accessible is copper. Copper’s energy is somewhat dense, and this is used as a grounding metal to bring silver and gold in alignment and not overwhelm the wearer with the elements in pure form. It is also for attuning your own energy. Copper and silver today are well-known anti-bacterial agents.


The second item and slightly more challenging to acquire was silver. Most common forms of silver used in jewelry are called sterling. Sterling is 92.5% pure often mixed with copper to increase the hardness/durability of silver. This however changes the energy vibration of silver ever so slightly. I wanted to create a bangle as close as possible to the one from Sri Yuketswar’s formula.

The pure gold wire in the SRF three metal bangle weighs a little over 33 grams, which is the same weight as the three pure gold spring links.
The pure silver wire in the SRF three metal astrological bangle weighs a little under 24 grams.
The pure copper wire weighs a little under 13 grams, which is close to the weight of the 3 pure copper spring links.
The three metal bangle that SRF makes weighs a little under 72 grams.

Pure silver can easily be acquired from any coin dealer. Many of the world’s mints have offered pure silver 1oz coins. Silver had a similar grounding effect to copper but its energy is lighter, it aids in focus, and clarity. I imagine this to be the equivalent of the mind, copper the body. When paired with copper though the two metals would react, and the copper often overpowered the silver. Which is why 92.5 sterling won’t work.


The third and trickiest item to acquire was pure 24kt gold. Gold is one of the rarest metals on earth, and it coincidentally has one of the highest vibrations. Pure gold is corrosion resistant and appears in nature like silver and copper can as an actual nugget. Gold’s vibration is so strong it can resonate through plastic. I was unable to acquire an ounce of pure gold. I had to settle for what I could afford which is 2.5 grams of gold. This was enough. The gold had a much higher vibration, and had almost a cleaning effect. I could see an ounce of it being able to disorient. Gold like silver often has other metals mixed in with it. 18kt, 14kt, 12kt etc., when each karat lessens the amount of other metals increases. These can include, copper, silver, nickel and other metals. When gold is diluted with another metal it changes the vibration of it, electrum is a naturally occurring form of gold and silver. An ounce and a half of gold would be enough to make sensitive individuals light headed. Gold is the metallurgical equivalent of the soul.


The three metals combined gold, silver and copper, balance each other out and do indeed act as a lightning rod between you and the universe. The efficaciousness of this item cannot be argued and definitely aids in accelerating the individual’s progress. However it’s still crazy expensive.


Hunting for alternate metals was a bit trickier than it might sound. In my quest for creating a new astrological bangle I first ruled out items by cost. I wanted to find something that could be relatively affordable and might still be attainable in the future. I suspect in another 100 years someone will need to re-investigate this as well. That said I looked into newer composited materials, tungsten, steel (around before yogananda’s time), aluminum, nickel, titanium, magnesium, copper, silver. I even investigated gem stones but gems in general have a different effect than metals. From the list I narrowed it down to just two metals that seemed to accomplish the same thing as three metal bangle.

Test Scenario One – Titatnium

It was about the same year Yogananda’s book was published that titanium was first forged into a usable alloy. Still too costly or even probable for any yogi to have possibly encountered. Or if they had simply dismissed as not common enough. Titanium is one of the most common metals of earth, it has a high corrosion resistance, it is light weight, and it is affordable. It’s back story is equally impressive. I first tested two bracelets made of titanium grade 2 for a year. Titanium grade 2 is pure titanium similar to 24kt gold is pure. The effects of wearing the bangles were quite noticeable more so than my makeshift combo of gold, silver and copper coins.

The bracelets had some interesting qualities they could be treated with heat to any color of the rainbow. They never got cold even when exposed to ice. They were incredibly durable and lightweight. They also are used in surgeries and biologically compatible. My biggest worry about them was they could not meet the weight requirements of Gold. But the formula from the Self Realization Fellowship is slightly different and has proportionate amount of metal to size. In further tests of other titanium grades and commercial jewelry none matched the grade 2 direct sourced titanium.

Test Scenario two – Iron & Titanium

After great success with titanium on it’s own I decided to test it with a similar grounding metal to copper and one that has equally ancient associations to it, Iron. I forged an iron and titanium bangle. This was to determine if the intertwined nature of the astrological bangle had any merit, does titanium need a corresponding grounding element? I wore this bangle for 6 months. The amount of titanium in it was greater than the single bangles i had made. It also was heavier and could not be worn at night. Ouch. Iron isn’t malleable like gold, silver and copper. The use of this I would consider a success. I came to realize though that similar to how Yogananda had a silver lead bangle iron was particular to me. This left one final test.

Test Scenario three – Astrological Bangle

Eventually, I was able to get my hands on an official issue Self Realization Fellowship bangle from the mother center. It’s effect was indeed electric. It was large, heavy and really uncomfortable. The limited mobility I had with it compared to my two previous bangles was startling. I could however notice it’s impact near instantly. I continued to wear this bangle for six months. I alternated between this and the titanium bangles and the titanium and iron bangle. The energy frequency was near identical with the titanium iron. When I wore the titanium bangles along with the astrological three metal bangle the impact was increased 10 fold. With both I felt I was the best self I could be.

Conclusion – The Affordable Astrological Bangle

The effectiveness of the Astrological Bangle is very real. At the end of my test I worried that my alternative while accurate would still be very challenging to create. Except it is quite simple and anyone with a pair of round nose pliers, a file, and protective eye wear can make one.

The best part all you need is $5.00 – $50 depending upon where you source it.

The affordable astrological bangle is made with grade 2 titanium and I got enough to create two bangles one for each wrist. Alternately you may be able to find a metalsmith or jeweler who can make them for you with the sourced material if you are uncomfortable with the DIY approach.

First wrap a string around your wrist and mark the point where it intersects. Measure this length and subtract one inch. This will be the length you need your bracelet to be. The titanium I recommend for these bangles is semi malleable meaning it is annealed. With a hacksaw or jewelers saw cut the length of wire you need. Use a file to round the edges and sand paper to smooth any rough spots. Start at 600 grit then work your way up to 1000 – 2000. This is effectively polishing the length of titanium you will use.

Now using the round nose pliers begin to bend the metal in at about the 3 inch mark moving slightly and turning until they are partially rounded do this for both sides.The below bangles are .125” grade 2 titanium half hard temper.

I opted to get a little creative with the ones I created and then used a torch to make them golden color. However, the purpose and function is the same. You may wear one on each wrist and gain the benefits of an astrological bangle.

How To Take Cold Showers

The first time I took a cold shower, I went into shock. I felt like I had been hit by a baseball bat and the wind was knocked out of me. I almost started hyperventilating. I remembered one thing. Breathe! I had to breathe in, breathe out, breathe… oh the heck with this I turned off the water. Was I really going to start taking a cold shower everyday? Yes, I was determined.

My family has a history heart disease, and I need to do everything I can to get my blood pressure under check. Cold showers can sometimes help. I looked to cold showers not out of desperation but as a way to excel beyond my current boundaries. People have been able to endure cold for decades and it seems it was a lost art. I am inspired by Wim Hof and his excellent video series, of breathing, and pep talking that encouraged me to take the next step. Several months later and I may take two cold showers a day. The second shower usually involves ecstatic laughter because I am so happy the freezing cold doesn’t bother me anymore. The temperature of the shower for me ranges anywhere from 40 – 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Not exactly warm.

So how did I do it? Slowly and painfully under guidance of Wim Hoff’s course.

But Wim’s videos only covered so much. Everything I found on cold showers just told me how great they are but none of them went into details of how to get started. I will tell you the easiest way you can get started.

cold-poster-conqueirng-the-cold-shower

Day 1 -3 : Take A Normal Shower

Start the day by taking your normal hot water shower. Clean up, wash your hair and before you are ready to get out start breathing deeply. Breathe in. Breathe Out. Breathe in. Breathe out. When you are able to hold your breath for a few moments you are ready to give your system a shock. Breathe out when you switch to cold water. As soon as the water touches, your natural reaction will be to take a deep breath. This is good! Breathe in and out. Feel the water gently hit your back and trickle down to your feet. Feel as your body rapidly adjusts from hot to cold. If you start to shiver or get goosebumps turn off the water and dry off.

Continue doing the above technique for a few days. While slowly staying longer and longer under the cold shower. As your body adapts to normalcy from the extreme temperatures the cold can be exhilarating and relaxing.

Day 4-14: Exhale, Turn 90 degrees, Inhale

Do the same as day 1 to 3 but this time turn 90 degrees so your left side is now exposed to the cold shower. Again your body will immediately inhale. It is important you are able to maintain control of your breath to prevent hyperventilating. When your side adapts again exhale and turn 90 degrees so your front is facing the shower. This part is tricky as some of our most sensitive body parts are here such as our faces. Quickly plunge your face in the water. Remember to breathe in and out. When you are ready exhale and rotate 90 degrees. Now you are getting your right side exposed to the water as well. Once your right side has gotten used to the cold rotate 90 degrees one more time and turn off the water. Pay close attention to how your body feels when you turn off the water. Notice how the blood rapidly flows to the cold parts.

I will reiterate it is very important to stop the shower and warm up immediately if you start to shiver or get goosebumps.

Continue doing this for 2 weeks increasing your time ever so slowly. The shock from going to hot water to cold water is greatest when you first turn it off. In time you can adjust the temperature of your normal shower down. Once you are comfortable with this technique you can challenge yourself more by taking a monthly ice bath. The water from an ice bath will never go below 35 degrees even the coldest parts of the ocean do not drop below 28-35 degrees.

If you want to learn more about Wim Hof we have an excellent documentary over here, that covers his amazing feats.

Artifacts and Treasures of Paramahansa Yogananda’s Self-Realization Fellowship

It has been near a decade since I first read The Autobiography of a Yogi. I didn’t know it at the time but like many others before me this book would be a book that changed my life. The contents of the book tell the story of a young boy who travels the world in the name of devotion to his divine calling. The culmination, some may argue, to write his life in a book. It is this curious telling of the life of Paramahansa that has brought so many people together. It is also what has kept me so motivated these past few years when I re-read the book. There is such power in the teachings of the yogis that I would be remiss not to share this unique opportunity with all of you.

Inspired by Guruji, a gentleman took it upon himself to collect those things related to his Guru’s life that were most dear to him with the purpose of helping to save the past. As with all things in this world he has had to part with much of this collection. A true and trusted friend helped him pay for his great medical expenses by purchasing his collection. Why am I taking the time to write this? Because this could be the last time such an amazing collection of items is ever together again and to give you the opportunity to carry a piece of history. There are many items of note in this collection but I have listed the most noteworthy below, with their basic descriptions. I am starting with the classic that is responsible for bringing many of us together.

1. AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF A YOGI, 1ST LONDON EDITION, 1949, Rare Jacket; SIGNED & INSCRIBED by Paramahansa Yogananda. NEAR FINE Condition.

Note: Paramahansaji rarely had occasion to sign the London Edition, which came out less than 3 years before his passing while he was mostly in seclusion in the desert. That this volume was signed by him in Los Angeles makes it very rare and highly collectible.

Also adding to the historic value of this volume: the inscription is to Sri Deva Ram Sukul, the noted author & healer of the time, and President/Founding Director of the Yoga Institute of America. Mae West is famously known to have been healed by Sri Deva Ram Sukul.

sold

Autobiography of a Yogi 1st Edition

Paramahansa'a Autograph

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070F

2. ORIGINAL, UN-RETOUCHED, PARAMAHANSA YOGANANDA STANDARD POSE PHOTOGRAPH (7″ X 9″), in its original mat from the photographer’s studio (12″ X 16″). SIGNED & INSCRIBED by “Swami Yogananda” on September 1st, 1934. Recently, tastefully framed with natural wood and UV Protective Glass (13.25″ X 17.25″).

This is THE iconic photograph of Paramahansa Yogananda that has been used on the cover of every edition of the Guru’s Autobiography — THE WAY IT ORIGINALLY LOOKED before being retouched prior to ever being published! If another one of these exists, it’s probably in the SRF Archives. This would be an ideal acquisition for a Self-Realization Fellowship Center or Meditation Group.

A more detailed description of this item is available from the seller upon request.

sold
Paramahansa Yogananda's Photo Autographed


3. AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF A YOGI, COMPLETE SET, 1946 Thru 1994 (21 Volumes), includes the First Paperback Edition, 1972. All in VERY GOOD, VERY GOOD+, FINE, and LIKE NEW Condition.

This set includes each and every variation of the American Autobiography editions that were ever offered for sale, through 1994. ALL volumes are in their Original Dust Jackets, where applicable (two late editions came without jackets). Originality of jackets was very carefully verified by analysis of minor changes that were made on the jackets from edition to edition and during editions, such as price, number of translated languages listed, lotus emblem size, various text adjustments, etc.

This set was assembled over the course of more than 25 years. It would be all but impossible to replicate it today. This would be an ideal acquisition for a Self-Realization Fellowship Center or Meditation Group.

A detailed description of each volume is available from the seller upon request.

$4,300

Autobiography of a Yogi Collection
4. SRF MAGAZINE SETS

These Sets are truly outstanding — not only for their size and condition, but also for how thoroughly they have been documented (the documentation alone is spectacular!).

Note: There were 7 Sets originally; 3 are still available. ALL 3 Sets contain primarily Issues that are in Excellent and Very Good condition.

SET #3

229 Issues, starting with Volume 3/Issue 1 (Nov – Dec 1927), and ending with Volume 42/Issue 1 (Winter 1970) — not all-inclusive.

$14,530 ($63 per issue) REDUCED to $10,900 ($48 per issue)

Self Realization Fellowship Magazine Set 3

Self Realization Fellowship Magazine Set 3b

SET #4

201 Issues, starting with Volume 3/Issue 1 (Nov – Dec 1927), and ending with Volume 42/Issue 1 (Winter 1970) — not all-inclusive.

$11,475 ($57 per issue) REDUCED to $8,600 ($43 per issue)

SRF Magazine Set4

SRF Magazine set 4b

SET #5

151 Issues, starting with Volume 3/Issue 1 (Nov – Dec 1927), and ending with Volume 42/Issue 1 (Winter 1970) — not all-inclusive.

$ 7,485 ($50 per issue) REDUCED to $5,615 ($37 per issue)

Self Realization Fellowship Magazines

Any one of these Sets would be an ideal acquisition for a Self-Realization Fellowship Center or Meditation Group.

VERY detailed documentation is available from the seller upon request. Serious inquiries only, please.

5. INNER CULTURE EAST-WEST MAGAZINE, VINTAGE BOUND VOLUME. Includes 6 Issues: Nov, Dec, 1936; Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, 1937.

VERY GOOD+ condition. Magazines were bound when new and volume appears not to have been used.

$795

SRF Inner Culture Hardbound Magazine

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6. SWAMI YOGANANDA ORIGINAL SIGNATURE AT THE TOP OF WHAT APPEARS TO BE A BACK COVER FROM AN OLD SRF MAGAZINE.

VERY GOOD condition.

Note: This top portion of the page has been cut off, no doubt just to save his signature.

$475

Paramahansa Yogananda Autograph

7. GURU OF YOGANANDA, SRI YUKTESWAR, RELICS CONSISTING OF:

1) “Particles of brick from wall of Sri Yukteswarji’s room where he had his Mahasamadhi.” 2) “Particles of brick that once upheld Sri Yukteswarji’s bed.” 3) “Sand from the beach at Puri; a favorite walk of Sri Yukteswarji’s”.

NOTE: This was collected by an SRF monk while on pilgrimage to India. He later gave portions to some of the other monks.

$295

Sri Yuketswar Relic

All of these items are amazing pieces of history, and spiritual heritage. If you feel drawn to or compelled to own any of these pieces, whether as a group or individually, I encourage you to contact the current owner who is looking to sell the pieces to the right person(s). I myself have acquired a relic from the collection and could not be happier as it has helped me tremendously in my growth.

Please direct all inquiries to Michael Green michaelgreenone@yahoo.com

Michael also has regular offerings on eBay, but these most precious treasures are available for private sale only. If you are reading this it means you are privy to an opportunity to purchase these unique artifacts.

How to Open Your Third Eye

Preface: I had initially rewritten this to be included on the Wim Hoff Method Blog. But, it went unposted. Rather than see the work lost I am sharing it with you. In addition to being easier to read than the last version I’ve added an illustrated how to poster.

how-to-open-your-thrid-eye

What is meant by ‘opening your third eye’? It is a meditation technique that refers to becoming more self aware and in tune with your surroundings. Results may be different for everyone. Some experience heightened awareness, more creativity, or a sense of calm and confidence. When performed consistently, your intuition will improve and you will become more aware.

I first tried this technique when I was a young boy. My mother and I were at a swap meet. It was there, after much pestering, that she bought me that book on Native American Shamanism. I wanted the book because my best friend was telling me about his great spiritual powers and how he was going to get a power animal. Since young boys can be quite competitive, I felt I also needed to do what my friend was doing. When we left the swap meet, I began reading the book in the car. One of the first meditation exercises I stumbled upon was contacting the ancient spirits for help. I decided this would be a good exercise to start with before I tried to find my power animal.

This is what I remember of the exercise.

“Breathe in through the nose for a slow count of 3. Hold for a count of 3. Then exhale for a count of three. Do this slowly and rhythmically. Focus on the point between your eyes above your nose on your forehead. Roll the eyes up behind closed eyelids. This may take 10-20 minutes before you can contact the spirits. As you breathe in and out, you will see different colors starting at yellow then shifting to purple. When you see purple you may, most respectfully speak with your spirit guides.”

When that evening finally approached, I found a quiet spot in the house and laid down on the ground in a darkened room. I breathed in and out. I became more and more relaxed. I saw flashes of yellow and purple. Then I asked to speak to my grandmother’s and grandfather’s spirits, the ancients, and the enlightened. Then, it happened! I heard a voice, as clear as day in my mind, and I freaked out. I did not know it then, but this was the day that would define the rest of my life.

It was not until years later that I tried meditation again, and it would be longer still when I tried, what I now know as, the third eye meditation. Almost like clockwork, years passed by again and it is only now that I realized the importance of opening my third eye.

Was I contacting ancient spirits when I was a child? Maybe, but more likely, I had gotten in touch with my higher consciousness. This higher consciousness is in us all. It is what makes us human and allows us to do amazing things.

There are many exercises and meditation techniques for opening your third eye. The easiest technique is to sit upright in a comfortable chair. Place your arms at your sides and hands on your lap. Breathe in through your nose to a count of 10, hold for 10, then exhale for 10. The longer you can do this the better, but the key is in the consistent rhythmic breathing. In through the nose, out through the mouth. When you do this, focus on the point between your forehead. You do not need to literally turn your eyes to your forehead, you need only to focus on the point in the middle of your forehead while you breathe in and out. Around the eight to tenth breath, you will start to see the yellow color spiral in your mind. As you continue breathing, the color will change to purple and then to flashing colors.

When this happens, when you finally see that vibrating purple color, it means you have opened your third eye. This ‘opening’ means different things for different people. For me, it has allowed more creativity and focus.

If you don’t see swirling colors, or you can’t hold your breath for 10 seconds, don’t worry. Just keep trying and do what you are comfortable with. One of my students would complain of constant headaches, but he persisted. Only when he persisted did he realize that his headaches were because he was staring at his nose cross-eyed.

The more meditation you do, the more understanding and control you will have over the effects of your newfound awareness. Many people think that the benefit of meditation is only during the actual meditation, but it is quite the contrary. The benefit comes a short time after the meditation. The more consistent you are in your meditation, the more aware of the benefits you become. You realize that, perhaps, you aren’t lucky, but there is someone/something guiding you. You see patterns where there would be random chances. This is just the start to an improved and a better you.

If you need help, or have questions, you are always welcome to contact me.