Last time we explored the current Age of Pisces and the transition into the shiny new Age of Aquarius. This isn’t due to happen any time soon but the shift has already begun. In this post we’ll explore what the coming age might mean and some of the changes that herald its arrival and whether it really will be shiny or something else entirely.
As we saw in the last post, the last few hundred years represent a transitional period between ages. Aquarian ideas, symbols and archetypes have been flooding into the collective consciousness, probably starting around the time of the Scientific Revolution in the 16th century.
However, the Age of Aquarius isn’t due to start until the 22nd or 23rd century so there’s little point in making any predictions. We can’t assume life will continue in the current way for the next hundred or more years. Just think back to the start of the 20th century – people were still pootling about in horses and carts!
That doesn’t mean we can assume the future will be all flying cars and personal space rockets, or whatever, either. Progress isn’t guaranteed and Mother Nature may have her own ideas, not to speak of the Sun who’s overdue for another massive outburst.
With that in mind, all we can do is ponder how to navigate the transition out of the Age of Pisces. The old Pisces gods are dying but we don’t yet fully understand the new gods, and this leaves us disoriented and confused. And prone to making stupid choices. We desperately need a dose of Aquarian rationalism but it’s hard to find.
It may be that we’re struggling to deal with the influx of Aquarian ideas because we’re still bogged down with Piscean illusion and dualism. This distorts our view of the present as well as the future (and the past). Much of what’s written about the Age of Aquarius has nothing to do with the Aquarian archetype and more to do with our hopes and fears – in other words, our feelings.
We’re looking at Aquarius through the lens of Pisces. Pisces rules the feelings and emotions, and relates to ideas of oneness and beliefs based on mass emotion. Aquarius rules the mind and thoughts, and relates to the interconnectedness of individuals based on humanitarian principles and ethics.
The internet is a good example. It’s clearly Aquarian in principle, but it’s also a perfect embodiment of Piscean illusion. We’re using something that can connect and enlighten humanity in ways that befuddle and mislead instead. Technology and science have become a belief system – even a god – that we serve, rather than a tool that serves us, as this excellent article by Jasun Horsley makes clear.
The development of a truly Aquarian science will transform our understanding of the laws of nature and the cosmos. We’ll leave behind our attachment to materialism and embrace a more holistic or integrated approach, perhaps based on a vision of consciousness as the root of all being. The Cosmos will be seen as alive and unfolding itself in mathematical and fractal cycles, from the smallest to the largest scales – from DNA to Galaxies.
Perhaps this will also involve a marriage between science and spirituality and a return to an earlier view that didn’t split God and nature. As Liz Greene says in The Outer Planets and their Cycles:
“Spirit and matter are not so split for Aquarius as they are for Pisces. God is alive in matter and reveals itself as the laws of nature and the laws, in particular, of human nature.”
The beginning of this vision is starting to form but we’re a long way from being able to embody it, or even understand it. Thanks to Piscean dualism, we’re more likely to encounter the shadow side of Aquarius, especially as the Piscean Age unravels over the coming years.
The dark side of Aquarius is all around us: in the rise of corporations and globalists crushing the freedom of individuals, the misuse of science and technology, social and political groupthink, and the belief in crazy utopian dreams about the future. These distortions happen when the balance between the individual (Leo) and the group (Aquarius) is disrupted.
Aquarius can go too far in demanding conformity to the group or society, driven by unconscious fears. This can lead to fanaticism and the rise of assorted despots, dictators and lunatics intent on changing the world. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to improve things, but denying the importance of individuals destroys their humanity. The results are explored in this excellent video about Brave New World.
The conflict between the individual and the collective plays out on multiple levels, from the family, to work and groups of friends, to politics, science, and religion. As a member of a group, you may be coerced to conform, to become more like the ideal envisioned by the collective. This effectively turns the collective into a god to be obeyed, as Melanie Reinhart explains in Chiron:
“A group, a group leader (Leo) or an ideal of revolution in society or change in consciousness (Aquarius) may become the god for many and, like anything invested with powerful transpersonal energy, it may become dangerous, as others are trampled underfoot in its name.”
Ideally, the balance between Leo and Aquarius can be found by individuals defining themselves in relation to the group without losing their autonomy or individuality. You find your centre within yourself, not within the group. This requires a certain level of individuation and a willingness to deal with your own shadow and not project it – as in the Age of Pisces.
The highest expression of the Age of Aquarius would be a society of sovereign individuals who come together as equals to achieve a common goal. It would be decentralised but networked and interconnected, with no obvious leaders – i.e. anarchism.
A society like this could only work if every individual was committed to embodying the highest ideals of humanity. This demands a level of self-mastery and self-knowledge that we’re a long way from achieving today. And getting there won’t be easy. In The Outer Planets and their Cycles, Liz Greene explains:
“…if that’s the vision which is emerging from the collective, then we must first go through the long and bloody process of discovering why we have never been able to experience brotherhood. No individual becomes conscious of himself instantaneously and without suffering, and no collective does either. The psyche just doesn’t work like that. If something must die, then it’s going to raise a hell of a fuss in the process, and if something is being born, it’s going to cause pain to the thing giving it birth.”
There’s no way around this. You can’t avoid it, block out the pain or skip the hard part and jump to the big prize at the end. As she says, “you can’t anaesthetise the soul, not without paying an awful price.”
And there’s been a lot of anaesthetising going on in the Age of Pisces. She goes on:
“It may be that Aquarius will bring us the awareness that we are indeed part of a vast interconnected life entity, both biologically and psychologically. But the awareness is going to force up everything in us which obstructs us from living our vision.”
Perhaps this is what we’re experiencing now. To get to the Age of Aquarius we’re going to have to go through a dark night of the soul. And that means living through the death of everything we’ve become attached to that isn’t true or real. We all have to face our shadows, both individually and collectively. And that means the rest of this century is probably going to be hell.
Not surprisingly, there’s a desperation for the Age of Aquarius to start as soon as possible. As we saw in an earlier post, the New Age mythology that underpins this desire is driven by a longing for a return to Eden to be liberated from suffering and death. This is a religious impulse – a longing for God, or for peace if you prefer to be Godless – and so Piscean.
It’s also a passive event. The glorious New Age arrives and everything is wonderful and you don’t have to do anything. You don’t have to change or make any kind of effort. It’s a fantasy and infantilising and disempowering.
Of course, it doesn’t have to be interpreted this way. If you view the Age of Aquarius as something to work towards, an ideal to strive for, then it could create the motivation to change. Seen this way, the New Age will only happen if we create it.
We’re creating our reality all the time, but it mostly happens unconsciously – hence, the big mess!
Reality works like a massive collective dream (or nightmare) and we’re all conjuring up what we want to believe. So if enough people believe the apocalypse is about to happen, for example, then it’ll happen. And the same applies to the so-called Great Awakening – if enough people focus on it, then it becomes part of reality.
However, the difference is that for the Awakening to happen, it’s not enough to just believe in it. You have to act on it and actually change yourself: your focus, perspective, mind, choices, actions – everything! That takes effort and responsibility so it’s less likely to happen – unfortunately.
Now for the good news!
We have a choice in how we respond to the challenge of the Ages. We don’t have to remain in the dark. We can choose to embrace the quest for inner knowledge and the revolution in consciousness that’s already underway. It’s not an easy path but the alternative is worse.
If we want to survive the 21st century then we have to change – not society, but ourselves. It’s time for humanity to grow up and take responsibility for the mess we’ve created and continue to create.
We don’t have to wait for the Age of Aquarius in order to embrace the values of humanitarianism, equality, and freedom. But these aren’t just ideals to believe in. They have to be acted upon in order to be understood. Freedom has to be earned.
In The Outer Planets and their Cycles, Liz Greene says it was Prometheus who gave us the gift of freedom when he stole the fire of the gods. The fire represents divine consciousness which gave us freedom from nature, instinct, and death. But, she says, Prometheus was a fool because he didn’t know what we would do with that fire. Would we misuse it? Would we misunderstand it?
“There is always great danger in the increase of consciousness, because the shadow can appropriate the new gifts for its own purposes, and only the terribly frail voice of inner conscience and inner integrity can put up a fight. I wouldn’t trust Prometheus, and I don’t trust the outcome of the Aquarian Age as a necessarily foregone and wonderful paradise on earth.”
What happens next depends upon every individual – YOU! – choosing to face your shadow and learning how to surrender to your divine nature as a mini embodied Christ (or Buddha, or whatever you want to call it). The odds of this happening on a collective level are tiny. But who knows by the end of the century?
Even if we can’t save the world, we can create little Aquarian life rafts, adrift in the sea of mass delusion. But it’s going to involve a fight for the soul of humanity – to quote Jung again, from Aion:
“If, as seems probable, the aeon of the fishes is ruled by the archetypal motif of the hostile brothers, then the approach of the next Platonic month, namely Aquarius, will constellate the problem of the union of opposites. It will then no longer be possible to write off evil as the mere privation of good; its real existence will have to be recognised. This problem can be solved neither by philosophy, nor by economics, nor by politics, but only by the individual human being, via his experience of the living spirit…”
- Zodiac Myths: The Story Behind Aquarius
- Saturn in Aquarius: Social Reform and Identity Politics
- Jupiter Saturn Conjunction: the start of a New Age?
- Saturn Uranus Square: freedom or slavery – time to choose
- Notes on Apocalypse: Fear of Freedom
- Mystic Warrior Practice – Ethics