The sages of ancient India discovered that all human beings come pre-wired with certain programming. Today this ‘inner code’ is called an archetype, or as I refer to it, your dharma type. Like your computer’s operating system, your dharma type is the software of your soul. These sages found that certain people made naturally good leaders, problem solvers, and protectors, and termed them “Warriors.” Others who were naturally skilled at processing and sharing information are called “Educators.” Then there are those for whom building communities, nourishing and serving others comes natural- these are the “Laborers.” And finally, those whose dharma (purpose in life or inner code) it is to care for their fellow humans while prospering themselves and society are the “Merchant” types.
In addition, there are some whose programs don’t quite fit into these four archetypes. They may have a bit of all of them, or none at all. They have an innovative, rebellious, or individual way of interacting with society. By birth or by circumstance, they were outside the norm- hence the term “Outsiders”- the reformers and innovators of the dharma type family. Their dharma is to blend disparate things to form something completely new; to re-invent the wheel, or barring that, to bring the wheel where it doesn’t yet exist.
Each of these five types was believed to play a role in society, just as the five elements work together to sustain life in the body. When each dharma type does what it’s born to do, the body of society thrives. But when one tries to do the job of another, disaster encroaches.
Leading and protecting a nation falls on Warriors, which is why traditionally kings and queens came from this class. But when other dharma types assume leadership positions, people tend to feel less protected. When Merchants lead, as they do in capitalist societies, they may create prosperity, but that likely favors the already rich, and often exploits the working classes. When Laborers lead, such as in Communist societies, higher ideals like liberty and spirituality tend to fall to the wayside. When Educators take rein, as with the Obama administration, the ideal becomes cooperation and diplomacy. But in the Warrior sphere of cutthroat politics, these Educator ideals often come up short. That is why Educators typically make better advisors and statesmen- which is not to say that they cannot lead, but they have to bring out their inner Warrior to do so.
Evolution and Devolution
In addition to knowing your dharma type, you have to understand how that type evolves and devolves- what makes you grow and what makes you wither and die. It’s not enough to know that you’re an Educator type- you must also know the direction that types evolves, and also the direction it disintegrates.
For example, Merchants and Laborers mutually evolve into each other’s type. That means that Merchants have to try to be more like Laborers, and vice versa. Makes sense, since Laborers who like to serve often don’t value their work highly enough, and they learn to honor their value from Merchants. Likewise, Merchants learn to honor hard work and the simple things in life from the Laborer.
Educators and Warriors also mutually evolve and have a lot to learn from each other. Warriors learn wisdom and patience, while Educators acquire strength and the ability to follow through from the Warrior- a vital quality for a leader.
When Obama said that he would close Guantanamo but didn’t, people didn’t see his flexibility as a virtue, but a liability. When he tried to push for universal health care but capitulated, this revealed further weakness. Most of the issues he tried to reform met with staunch resistance. Instead of standing up to his opponents, and saying “I was elected to lead, and damn it, I will!” he said, “Let’s all try to work together.” This works great in a classroom, but not in the battlefield of government and politics.
Naturally, diplomacy and statesmanship make up a large part of leadership- but when the chips are down it takes power and determination to push through what you stand for.
Recent Presidents and Their Dharma Types
Bill Clinton– Merchant type. Created prosperity for the nation and the super-rich, but his policies also paved the way to the economic meltdown a dozen years later.
George W. Bush– Outsider (playing a Merchant). Arguably made the United States outsiders in the global community with his “with us or against us” attitude. Spent a trillion dollars on war.
Barack Obama– Educator. Ideas of hope and change that lacked the steel will to push through. Too much compromise.
None of these presidents created the certainty and security a nation’s citizens want to feel. Enter Donald Trump, who is also an Outsider dharma type- not a Warrior. However, as a master publicist, he understood the deep need for certainty all people have- and spoke directly to it. One of the first lessons of marketing is “say your client’s words back to them-this makes them feel understood.” Donald sent his team out to listen to what people were actually saying- on call-in talk shows and other formats- and used their exact words to shape his campaign. These words most everyone has heard, about Mexicans, Muslims, and all the other factions people see as threats to their existence. This masterful marketing job was enough to win the presidency- perhaps the best sales job in history. The question is, can Trump deliver on these promises. Probably not.
Because Donald himself is an Outsider type, he doesn’t have the Warrior ethic to stand in the line of fire when necessary. Instead, Outsiders under pressure resort to blaming everyone but themselves for the problems around them. As reformers and troubleshooters, Outsiders are gifted with the ability to see what’s not working in the world- but they are also often blind to their own deficiencies. In fact, that is the first step on their path of evolution: self-responsibility. The other two steps are Ruth and Respect. To learn more about these, and how to evolve into the highest expression of your dharma type, try the Decoding Your Dharma video seminar, now on sale for three days. Or, for a full certification in Dharma Type methodology, including using the art and science of Vedic Astrology to enter the heart of your client, consider the Dharma Type Certification– a comprehensive, dedicated year-long program in applied Vedic wisdom. Students accepted by appointment only. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.