© Kit Constable Maxwell

Chapter 6.


The story of mankind's spiritual awakening, and of the part we play in it.
© Kit Constable Maxwell


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.

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.

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....

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 without us.

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 spiritual ineptitude.

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.

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Table of Contents - click on any chapter to open it
Prologue                   Click here...
Space and Matter
Evolution of Life
Birth of Awareness
Spiritual Goals
Evolution and Astrology This page
Astrology and Fate
Light, Love and Feeling
Primal Scream
World Religions
Ethics of Caring
Thought Conditioning
Miracles and Prayer
Shadow and the Unconscious
Journey in Spirit
Pantheism and Matter
Appendix I
Glossary of Terms
Appendix II
Appendix III