Viveka – discrimination 

«The swan has the power of going up steadily. It has the power of discriminating between the real and the unreal as in separating milk from water. The swan understands the distinction between ignorance and knowledge. Hence I (Brahmā) the Creator, assumed the form of Swan.O Nārada! But I failed to cognize the refulgent form of Śiva and therefore could not exercise my power of discrimination. How can real knowledge dawn on one who is engaged in activities of creation? Hence though in the form of Swan I could not attain the power of discrimination» (Śivapurāṇa 2.1.15).

That of the swan is a comparison that is often used in yoga so much that Vivekananda wanted it as a central symbol in the logo that he created to designate the yogin. Indeed, the path of the spiritual seeker starts with the fundamental question “Is what surrounds me real?”, which marks the reawakening of discrimination, and culminates in the profound acquisition given by the experience of the distinction (vivekakhyati) between the manifest world and the “True reality”.

Getting to vivekakhyati is not easy, Pisces, but discrimination is a training that can be practiced at various levels. Your birthday is approaching. It’s time to go make plans again. Ideas become clearer and, reassured by the affection of your loved ones, you can throw yourself into some new experience. But make sure they are real opportunities to learn. Do not seek experiences just to escape something else or to irritate someone, use discrimination to seize the right opportunities.


Hamsa-āsana, swan pose

There are several versions of the swan pose. This can be useful for strengthening the body and spirit. Run it every day for 30 seconds.

Awareness exercise

Whenever an opportunity presents itself, ask yourself the question: is it milk or water?

Mantra of the month

«Like a swan».