In general, the term template, or templet, a diminutive of the Latin templum (temple), is employed to describe a mechanical pattern used to reproduce shapes, or the molecular structure of a compound utilized as a prototype for the production of another compound.
In computer terminology templates are predesigned formats for text and graphics on which also web pages can be based. Their function is to enforce a standard layout, which affects multiple pages or specific content regions. When the template is changed, any page or region that refers to that template is also automatically changed.
In astroshamanism template is used as a synonym of Totem Spirit, Paheka, archetype, deva, etc. The advantage of the term template, as I see it, is that, unlike most traditional words, is devoid of romantic connotations and appears more neutral and rigorously pragmatic.
The astrological equivalents of templates are the twelve zodiac signs and the seven traditional planets, which are very powerful references, yet often misleading because of the biased associations they cause. Whatever the case, in this article I will use the term template, which you can always substitute with some of the terms mentioned above if you do not feel comfortable with it.
Astroshamanic templates literally represent the patterns of reproduction that shape our entire human perception of reality. They are the generators of the collective dream that keeps our world trapped into what can be described as a simulation grid. “All welfare and adversity that come to man and the other creatures come through the Seven and the Twelve” reads the Bundahishn (a classic account of Zoroastrian cosmology) “for the twelve signs of the Zodiac and the seven planets rule the fate of the world and direct it.”
In the astroshamanic cosmogony the above state of affairs is called the Human Arbitrary Configuration (HAC), which is strategically caused by the Paheka Rubhe (the web generated by the 144 combinations of the twelve astroshamanic templates). Whatever is perceived in our world is strategically the result of this web, which appears to operate with an intention of separation. The only way to change the effects of this situation is to access the templates and modify their programme (intention). When the programme in the template is customized, all the elements of our reality that refer to that template are also inevitably changed.
The extreme disadvantage here is that templates abide beyond the reality that they generate, i.e. our human configuration (HAC). And since HAC is based on separation templates remain virtually inaccessible, thus precluding any prospect of real change. The aim of the current HAC is essentially to prevent the connection with templates by annihilating any possibility of escape from its separated reality.
Yet, within HAC there exist however few extraordinary options for escape, which are either part of the acknowledged, though secret, structure of the configuration itself, or the result of system failures. This is the realm of the Provisional Order, or Provordo Etnai, and of shamans. The situation is ideally depicted in the movie The Matrix, where Morpheus and his crew can enter and exit the Matrix (HAC) at will, causing failures in its programme, while the men with the black suit operate as a sort of HAC antivirus software. They can also transit to and fro HAC, yet they do so in order to eradicate threats to the system and prevent illicit escapes.
The characteristic of shamans is their ability to move in and out of ordinary reality, yet similarly to Morpheus and the men in black they do so either to promote unity or preserve separation. Paradoxically, yet perhaps more accurately, shamans also play a third function, which serves the interests of both parties. Yet, this is most contentious and we will not to go into it here. What I would like to address instead are some more pragmatic features of the work with templates.
In practical terms shamans are aware of how changes truly manifest in the ordinary visible reality. Their connection with templates is purely pragmatic. This means that their association far from being dictated by beliefs is based upon direct experience and tangible results.
Shamans produce changes in HAC by establishing a connection with alternative or parallel realities, and namely with the templates that originate such realities. For example, if in our ordinary reality (HAC) there is a conflict between two individuals, the commonplace way of dealing with it is to operate within HAC itself, i.e. by directly involving the related parties and finding ways to solve their conflict. This is certainly legitimate, and at times the conflict can be solved in this way, as long as the templates contemplate that possibility. Yet this is not always the case, and often the conflict escalates or, even worst, is repressed or disguised. A shamanic alternative is to operate on the templates themselves and give less emphasis on the outer conflict.
Here the shaman refers to the conflict or whatever happens in the ordinary reality similarly to how a typographer considers printed material. Here outer reality is merely the result of a printing process, which is determined by typesetting. Before the advent of digital publishing, typesetting of printed material was operated by compositors working by hand or with machines. Yet, although things have evolved, the general principle of typesetting is still the same. It involves the arrangement of glyphs, images and other pieces of text to make up a template, and the successive printing or transfer of that template onto paper or other media.
It is the template that produces the printed material. Yet, since it is the printed material that catches all the attention, the understanding of how printed matter is generated is often lost for most folks and remains the realm of typography or desk top publishing.
Once the shaman has identified the features of an issue occurring in ordinary reality the next step involves tracing the template that is producing the issue. Here part of the work consists of facing the template and understanding why it generates that issue, which purpose it serves in the universe and, if this is coherent with the shaman’s intention then customizing the template.
The arrangements in which the letters of the alphabet can be placed are immeasurable, yet there are only 26 letters (in the English alphabet). There are many copies of a given printed material, and they can be published in various formats or type paper, yet in the end there is only one template. Similarly, there are countless expressions of the issues we face in life, yet there are only very few templates.
The main characteristic of working with templates is the awareness that there is nothing personal or private, and that everything is part of the collective. Many events in our life seem to relate only to our private life and to the lives of those we get involved with. Yet, when we become aware of templates, we realise that what seems to happen to us is indeed happening on a much wider scale.
When I deal with issues only at a personal level, I cut off from the vaster reality where this issue truly belongs. When I open up to the collective I realize that I am not alone and that I can receive support from a wider spectrum of forces. This is indeed the first step in shamanic healing: translating personal history into collective history. Before moving beyond the ordinary reality and accessing the template, I need to take the first decisive step of mending the separation between myself and my environment.
I need to realize that the level of fragmentation of the ordinary reality is of great magnitude. Not only there is a huge separation between outer and inner reality. There is also massive separation within the outer reality itself. This easily causes us to see our experiences with all their feelings, processes and emotions as separate from the experiences of other human beings, not to mention animals, plants or minerals.
Before even attempting to access the template, we need to become experientially aware of the collective implications of all apparent personal processes. We need to feel at one with the outer reality for once we access the subtle realms of the templates we will confront far more complex dimensions. There is no way we can approach the templates unless we are ready to question our human illusory perception and, though provisionally, let go of it.
Human beings are perceivers, but the world that they perceive is an illusion: an illusion created by the description that was told to them from the moment they were born. So in essence, the world that their reason wants to sustain is the world created by a description and its dogmatic and inviolable rules, which their reason learns to accept and defend. (Carlos Castaneda, The Wheel of Time, p. 133)
Templates abide beyond the perception of our illusive world based on linear time and third-dimensional space. At their level of awareness all times and spaces exist simultaneously. Moreover what seem to be serious problems from our human perspective appear totally different from the templates’ perspectives. The understanding of templates is virtually unattainable for our limited human minds, yet glimpses of comprehension are accessible when we use easier definitions of templates.
Templates are models which reproduce an enormous variety of shapes. The appearance of the shape changes, yet it keeps its essential structure. For example, if the template is a circle, I can reproduce many circles and paint them in different colours, yet they will always be circles. The same applies to triangles. In the astroshamanic cosmology there are 12 major templates. Each of these templates possesses its own characteristics. Each template consists of a specific story that constantly repeats itself. It is like the remake of a movie. The actors and the environment change, yet the story remains the same, although there may be some minor variations.
There are 12 basic stories. Everything proceeds undisturbed until the story goes according to the script. The purpose of the template is to reproduce the same structure, yet allowing trivial alternatives in the content.
Since the most ancient times of human history, the teachings around the basic templates have been transmitted through the work of a few individuals or esoteric groups. The number, the form, the name and the function of these templates changes according to the strategies involved.
Astroshamanism employs the astrological language as a model of reference and considers 12 templates whose associations are akin to those of the 12 zodiacal signs and their ruling planets. The first step in working with templates involves acknowledging each one of them, separately, in the same way children learn the alphabet. Each letter is identified and associated with the sound it produces, then later letters will be put together to create words and sentences.
The second step in this process involves being aware of binaries, combinations between two templates, which is makes up the above mentioned Paheka Rubhe (the web generated by the 144 combinations of the twelve astroshamanic templates).
Astrologically this web is described by the 144 combinations (Astroshamanic Binaries) between the Sun and the Moon’s sign. By experientially exploring these 144 patterns, the astroshamanic operator taps into the matrix of ordinary reality, potentially unveiling the source of all possible conflicts and accessing the key for either releasing or promoting them.
A typical practice in astroshamanism is monitoring the Moon’s movements from one sign to the other (zodiac cycle of the Moon), and its relationship with the Sun’s movement. The times the Moon takes to move through all the 12 signs lasts an average of 27 days and 12 hours, whereas the Sun takes approximately one year. At any given time the Moon and the Sun will be in specific signs, making altogether 144 binaries.
See also: Astroshamanic Binaries
 A typical practice in astroshamanism is monitoring the Moon’s movements from one sign to the other (zodiac cycle of the Moon), and its relationship with the Sun’s movement. The times the Moon takes to move through all the 12 signs lasts an average of 27 days and 12 hours, whereas the Sun takes approximately one year. At any given time the Moon and the Sun will be in specific signs, making altogether 144 binaries.
In advanced astroshamanic work we provide several tools for promoting awareness of the 144 binaries. These include being aware of the lunar cycles and the position of the Sun and Moon at any time during the year, and also the natal position of the Sun and Moon with reference to people or events.
People born with the Sun and Moon in a given binary strategically vibrate its frequency. Their presence and their works hold the qualities of the binary involved. These can be used to evoke, stimulate, balance and heal the potential of the binary, releasing its dysfunctional and grieving patterns. Hence books, music, movies, artefacts, etc. produced by someone born with a given Sun and Moon position, at a time when the Sun and the Moon are in certain position, will carry the energy of both binaries.