The Age Of Aquarius
When the Moon is in the seventh house, and Jupiter aligns with Mars,then peace will guide the planets, and love will steer the stars.
What does it actually mean that astrologically this is the Age of Aquarius and are there any signs in the world that this Age has already begun?
When will it dawn, and what can we expect?
Most people are familiar with the term New Age and many will recognise the words of the song ‘This is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius’. These Ages in astrology last for around 2,000 years and what these words actually refer to is the world leaving one Age (the Age of Pisces which coincided with the arrival of Christ) and entering the next (Aquarius).
Aquarius is the eleventh zodiacal sign, and this ancient constellation has retained a consistent mythical theme through various cultural transformations. The Babylonians saw the water jar as an overflowing urn,
and associated Aquarius with their eleventh month, equivalent to our January-Feburary, translating to “curse of rain.” Aquarius is the first constellation in both the Chinese and Indian calendars and is associated with water in both. The Egyptians saw the figure representing Hapi, god of the Nile, who distributed the waters of life.
In the seventies the Broadway musical HAIR informed us of the dawning of the”Age of Aquarius.” We sang along, most of us blissfully unaware what an age was. Before modern clocks and calendars the sun, moon and stars were the way we “told time.” The sun’s apparent movement across the sky became the day. The moon’s phases around the earth gave us the month. Earth’s longer passage around the sky gave us the year. As ancient sky watchers pondered the heavens over thousands of years larger divisions of time called ages evolved.
What is an age?
Astronomically an age is defined by the constellation which provides the back drop for spring equinox sunrise in the northern hemisphere. Earth wobbles on her axis of rotation, causing spring equinox sunrise to inch backward through the solar sequence of constellations. There are twelve ages, one for each zodiacal constellation, “precessing” from Pisces to Aries at the rate of one degree in seventy-two years, and delineating the passage of a Great Year of 25,920 years.Dividing by twelve each age lasts roughly 2,160 years .
Astrologically an age is characterized by the archetypal energies of the constellation. At present the equinox sunrise straddles the modern boundaries of Pisces and Aquarius, and the stellar backdrop is the omega star in the constellation of Pisces. As the backward march shifts, the “dawning of the Age of Aquarius” will be heralded as this constellation moves to center stage and defines the new world age.
But when will the aeonian changing of the guards occur?
According to the Cambridge Guide to the Constellations, the Age of Aquarius is eight hundred years in the future. Audubon’s Field Guide to the Night Sky gives a figure of six hundred years. Astrologers differ on when the momentous dawning will occur, and some sources believe the new age has already begun.
If the duration of an age is 2,160 years, and we know the starting point, then the answer is simple arithmetic. However, we don’t know for certain when the age of Pisces began, and there are conflicting opinions. Is the duration of an age uniform like an astrological sign, or is the length based on the breadth of the constellation? Constellations are not uniform in size; the constellations of Pisces and Aquarius overlap like the terrestrial states of Texas and Oklahoma. It is also conceivable that over a nearly twenty-six thousand year period the rate of movement might not be constant.
Perhaps the ages are defined by heliacal (before the sun) risings of certain fixed stars. There may also be some subtle mechanism, working as temporal cogs in the Great Wheel, which we have forgotten. If we accept the assumption that the ancients delineated the boundaries of the ages by solar alignments with certain stars, we are still left with the puzzle that the constellations as we configure them today have altered over time. Where do we look for an ancient benchmark?
How did the ancients measure the ages?
Using the SKYGLOBE astronomy program as a window into the past, and certain fixed stars and points in time as probable markers, a pattern seems to emerge. Tracking the spring equinox sunrise along the ecliptic (apparent path of the sun) shows the sun’s relationship to certain bright stars which would have risen heliacally (before the sun) at past points in time.
4,300 years ago, toward the end of the age of Taurus, the Pleiades, in the constellation of Taurus, rose before the sun at spring equinox. The bright star Alcyone, shining before dawn, would have aligned with spring sunrise. Some two thousand years later, during the age of Aries, Hamal, alpha Aries, would have risen before the sun. Today, as we contemplate the closing of the age of Pisces, the omega star of Pisces holds the place of spring equinox sunrise.
When do we change our star clocks?
Some researchers believe the current age of Pisces may have begun before the accepted birth of Christ around 111 BCE. The equinox sun was then aligned with the star Al Rescha, “The Knot,” which is now the alpha star of Pisces. If that conjunction signaled the beginning of the Piscean age, adding 2,160 years places us close to the Aquarian age.
If we accept the timeframe of historical zero as the beginning of the last age, then simple arithmetic places the onset of the age of Aquarius as 2,160 CE. In 0 CE, Xi Pisces, an unnamed star, rose before the sun. In 2,160 the sun will rise after the Iota star in Pisces, also unnamed.
Researchers Robert Bauval and Graham Hancock provided compelling evidence that 12,500 years ago was significant to the ancient Egyptians. The authors demonstrated a convincing sky-ground relationship at Giza, memorializing that time. The bright star Denebola, beta Leo, rose then, marking the Lion’s tail, and ushering in the age of Leo. Astrological tradition always says this star is unlucky. Perhaps the Egyptians recognized that the heights of civilization reached during Zep Tepi, the First Time, would not return for another twelve thousand years.
Using the calculated rate of precession, the vernal sunrise will not move through the modern constellation of Pisces for another eight hundred years. That seems a long expanse for a single age. The star we now call Beta Pisces, on the westernmost border of the constellation, is usually not connected to the “circlet” of stars forming the southern of the two fishes. Some sources name this star Al Achsasi, “the Fish’s Mouth. In Piscean star lore, for a long time there was only one fish. It is probable that in antiquity the stars now forming the “circlet” of the western fish were part of what is now Aquarius.
In the Middle Ages the year 747 CE was honored as the official birth of Christ due to a conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn. Scholars of the time felt that the spectacular conjunction bore uncanny resemblance to Matthew’s Biblical account of the star of Bethlehem. However, adding 2,160 to 747 also seems too far removed to be a serious contender.
And the winner is . . . 2,500
I believe the most compelling candidate for the dawn of the new age is the epoch of 2,500, exactly halfway around the Great Year from 10,500 BCE. The unnamed theta star of Pisces marks the dawn, unremarkable from a light show perspective. Even though no bright star will grace the equinox horizon, the ancients may have understood the principle of opposite energies at work in the larger scheme of precession. They may have sent a message across time that we are now approaching a new era of possibilities.
Comes The Dawn
We are in a long term “watery” phase as the ages move from THE FISHES to the WATER CARRIER and then into THE SEA GOAT. Astrologers speak of cusps and orbs, gray areas of combined influence. While the spring equinox sun rose in front of the stars of both Aries and Pisces, Jesus was seen as both Lamb of God and Fisher of Men during the mingled influences of the ages of the Ram and the Fishes. If the orb for an age is six degrees of arc, we will feel the combined influence of Pisces and Aquarius for more than four hundred years. New energies combine with the death throes of the old age as it gives way to a new dispensation.
The age of Pisces has been characterized by both hierarchy and centralization of power. While a wise and far-sighted monarch can give people vision and leadership, a petty tyrant wields a reign of terror. In the higher symbolic aspect we see the sacrificial king, the crucified savior, who takes on the collective sins of the people.
A positive legacy of the Piscean age is a profound spiritual renaissance at work on the planet. Many people, including scientists, are recognizing the existence of subtle energies. Quantum theory mystifies physicists, stretching boundaries of what’s possible. Everyday people encounter angels, experience miracles, and survive transforming near-death experiences.
Over the course of the next age secrecy and hierarchy will give way to a more egalitarian decentralization of knowledge and power. I believe the age of Aquarius will see distribution of wealth as a result of free energy and a totally altered monetary system. This new-found freedom will bring its own challenges. Power in the hands of the people can draw on the gifts of each regardless of prior class or station, but can also lead to anarchy. In the Aquarian mode the test of responsible use of resources will rest with the individual.
The transmission of energy and the egalitarian availability of information and education will be ushered in by the idealistic and appropriate use of technology. The world wide web is an early harbinger of the age of Aquarius. Ecology and the greening of the earth will be emphasized in the next age, and the quality of water will become paramount. The Age of Aquarius may see change in the way we track time. The stars have always been used for navigation. If space travel becomes commonplace we may someday reckon by “star dates” as popularized by the Star Trek series.
Ancient wisdom traditions indicate that humanity is moving toward androgyny. We see glimpses of this in “Generation X” where traditional gender boundaries blur. Same sex marriages, transsexuals and transvestites will be more open as we move into Aquarian energies.
Icon for a new age
One icon of the Aquarian age might be the urn as a sacred vessel. Another image is the chalice, or grail, symbolizing both a vessel of spirit and the sacred quest. Pure water, bubbling from fountains into beautiful gardens may be the way we memorialize the Water Bearer. I believe the “official” new age is still some time off, and we have some time to settle into the new energies. Meanwhile we change the world by changing ourselves.
Aquarius and Technology
Aquarius is an Air sign, associated with technology and communication. The influence of this World Age will be seen in the world as few homes will be without a computer and more and more people will using the Internet. Despite its links with communication, Aquarius is a sign that tends to stand apart from others and with computer links being more widely used both in business and personal life, there will be less need for people to meet personally and more people working in isolation from home. This also suggests that people of the future are likely to have many acquaintances but few really close friends.
Aquarius and New Age Subjects
More apparent will be the relationship between the individual and the cosmos, or the material world and the spiritual world. Through this, the Age of Aquarius promises to be the Age of Brotherhood. With the Age of Aquarius of come a greater interest in humanity through psychological and spiritual fields. It is becoming more accepted that physical health can be related to mind and attitude and there is increasing interest in the many different spiritual forms of healing. Religiously and philosophically people are more willing to experiment and are more versatile in their thinking.
Other areas of life associated with the sign Aquarius are: electricity, new inventions, space travel, radio, television and telecommunications.
Aquarius is the most humanitarian of signs and on a global level there will be increased interest in looking after the earth for future generations. Nation will meet with nation in a fight for worldwide peace and justice. Diplomatic relations will continue to play an essential role in keeping the peace.
So now you know what to look for, take the time to examine the world around you.