Does Astrology dictate the pace of evolution... or is the pace of
evolution constrained by astrological forces? The changing expressions
of mankind's spiritual evolution can be readily identified with the
astrological age in which they occurred. Plato, (400 BC), described
the Great Year of mankind's spiritual development - a 25,000 year
cycle divided into twelve astrological ages of around 2,165 years
each, the twelve houses of the Zodiac. Some centuries later, one Hipparchus
(150 BC) observed, in a phenomenon unknown to Plato, that the Earth
wobbles on its axis as it orbits the Sun, and traces a circle that
takes, yes, 25,000 years to complete10.
10 This phenomenon was later understood to be the cause of the annual shift of magnetic north, about one degree per annum.
Around 4,000 BC the Taurean age was born, characterised by its considered
attitude to life and its goals, when nomadic tribes abandoned their
wandering ways, settled in communities, developed elementary script
and fathered the birth of permanent societies. And all this while
waiting for their newly sown crops to grow.... The astrological house of Taurus is characterised by home loving,
fertile and procreational qualities, and this trait was typified by
the cult of the Great Mother, (later to be known as Gaia in Greek
mythology), where history shows almost every social group of the period
venerating fertility rites, earthly abundance and procreativity, all
serving the needs of this age, this timely switch from wandering nomad
to the birth of Western civilisation.
Then around 2,000 BC the first of successive hordes of warring tribes
swept down to the Mediterranean stronghold of the agrarian, Taurean
cultures residing there. Out of destruction and domination was born
the Arien age, typified by the warrior archetype and the wilful, head
butting ram of Aries. The old orders were swept aside and a rich new
cult developed in Greek and later Roman civilisations through expanding
trade, disciplined armies, slavery and colonisation.
BIRTH OF CHRIST
Another 2,000 years and the next age arrived, with astrological predictability,
and was heralded by the birth of Christ. The age of Pisces was nigh,
typified by subtle change, tolerance and love. The time was ripe for
a new order, a new perspective of social reality; and Christianity
was born, based upon qualities unknown in the old Arien societies.
The indomitable, mythical gods of the past were relegated to religious
history and Christianity, the daughter of Judaism struggled hesitantly
into existence. This gentle, new, monotheistic religion had arrived
to accommodate the changing face of mankind's consciousness. It was
based upon the Piscean precepts of openness and forgiveness, love
and compassion, and a non-confrontational, peaceful and forgiving
doctrine. Astrology didn't cause the change, but the change reflected
the astrological age in which it occurred.
This is typical of astrology,
the external face of inner energies being experienced on both an individual
and a collective level. Astrology and Christianity are uneasy bedmates. The pagan origins
of early astrologers, Sumerian, Babylonian, Egyptian, all undermine
the early Christian stance on Fate and Free will. Christians were
taught that the skies were full of a heavenly host of angels and that
the experiences of life responded solely to Christ's benevolence....
This charming view held good for over 1,000 years, (during which time
Arabian studies of Astronomy proceeded apace, with early mathematical
instruments revealing their scholarly achievements during this period).
It was not until Galileo developed the first astronomical telescope,
in 1632, and began examining the planets in detail, that the Christians
began to take note of some of the undeniable facts of life enshrined
in traditional astrological and astronomical teaching. Galileo's fame
however, cost him dearly - the Christian hierarchy ordered him to
refute his findings and retract his life's work, while the Pope stated
this haughty denouncement to be unquestionable,11 and committed him
to trial on a charge of inciting blasphemy.
11 The papal backstop of 'infallibility' hadn't started yet - that characteristically audacious edict only came into being in 1870.
But the secret was out - there were no angels in the heavens, just
the rock strewn planets that questing observers had expected. The
world jumped a quantum leap into science, leaving the Christian authorities
in Rome to follow, rather sheepishly, some years later. The hapless
Galileo ended his life under house arrest.
The planets of our solar system
There are those who mistrust astrology, and those who would discredit
its teaching even before studying it. The Christians, smarting under
their arrogant error, still ban the study of astrology. For the rest
of the world and countless students of this 5,000 year old science,
astrology holds a route map of the individual's potential for inner
development, a pathway through the minefield of social, psychological
and spiritual awakening.
AGE OF AQUARIUS
We are now entering a new age, the Age of Aquarius; this age is
typified by idealism, openness, fraternity, fairness, justice and
equality. The emerging Common Market is typical of this Aquarian energy
at work, and it is no surprise to astrologers to see this kind of
institution coming into being at our Aquarian time. The negative side
of this energy is also clearly seen in the break up of the old Yugoslavia
where enmity, hatred and grief proliferate. There is always a darker
side to astrological energies, and on a personal level this is called
the Shadow. This we have to encounter, befriend and accommodate in
our lives, just as ethnic strife in the Balkan states will surely
undermine any of the hard won goals of the Common Market unless satisfactorily
quartered and reunited with the mainstream of European social aspirations.
Aquarius is the sign of the Water Bearer; and Water is symbolic of
the Unconscious. The Unconscious is the realm of inner change that
is the powering energy of our generation. The traditional perspectives of Christian religions, unchallenged
for 2,000 years, will now give way slowly, reluctantly, hesitantly
to a new order. We have seen the outright challenge to Papal and Hierarchical
authority in the Church. Mass walkouts by priests, worthy of excommunication
or even execution in earlier times, are accompanied by schism and
division on almost every point of doctrine, and most recently an irreverent
and wholly unchristian outcry on the proposed ordination of women.
Ah! the hollow trumpet of theological self righteousness....
And all this change supports a succession of 'New Age' publications,
of which this book is one, which embrace the search for an inner meaning
to life, a personal, intellectual god which meets the changing needs
of the age, and responds to the new Aquarian tendency grappling at
the cobwebs of an ageing Piscean persuasion. Inevitably, a changing age invokes grief and demands sometimes painful
realignment; this is a time of confusion, disorder, anxiety. We cling
on to timeworn lore through fear. We discredit new ideas without knowing
why; we resist change because we have to start thinking about ourselves,
our destiny, our god....
TIME AND CHANGE
The nature of Time is experienced as Change - and change is the
quality of development, be it psychological, social or spiritual.
This is the underlying quality of evolution which is busy manifesting
on not just a biological level but on an inner, spiritual level too.
When we resist change and cling to old values, and carry our past
along with us with all its grief and tears and injured innocence,
then we condemn personal growth to Limbo - and evolution marches on
A hundred years from now a new social order will be in place, fired
by the spirit of the astrological age, attuned to the pace of evolution
and in step with the rhythm of eternity. For the meantime we have
to accept the pangs of change. No god will do our thinking for us,
or tell us what to do, for this belongs to the dependant and filial
doctrines of the Piscean age. We alone are responsible for uniting
our spiritual spark with the source of perpetual light we call God.
We do this through honest self appraisal and through nurturing the
harmonious vibrations we experience as spiritual love.
When we view the world without judgment and seek out beauty and joy,
then we experience our spiritual reflection - and so do those around
us. When we look out and see only ugliness, grief and despair, we
encounter the same ugly sentiments which will forever condemn us to
a world of disappointment, negativity and dissatisfaction. The choice
is ours alone.
We are responsible only to ourselves for our own progress; we are
charged with the responsibility of Becoming; not just who we'd like
to be, or who our parents would like us to be, or what society projects
upon us to be.... but what we really are, the rich whole of our spiritual,
emotional and psychic entirety. We all have rare and individual talents within us, be they artistic,
creative or vocational; and they are all gifts of the spirit. These
talents can be buried under mountainous psychological wounds stemming
from early experiences of life, or under apathy, disinclination or
We all have a responsibility to our spiritual
selves and through that to the world around us. When we take the first
faltering steps into our inner journey, our spiritual input accelerates
and the next steps will follow with growing ease. Rapid and permanent growth will follow. A sense of fulfilment and
a sense of vocation will lighten our life, and the world will respond.
There is no judge waiting to condemn us for our failings; no outraged
god, no Jehovah; we ourselves are the judge, and we must judge our
striving with compassion and patience.
We must keep in step with the drift of our astrolgical age, and
be prepared to pursue new psycho-spiritual goals. Above all we must
be prepared to keep our spirit moving; keep learning and keep evolving.