The approximate 2,150 years for each age corresponds to the average time it takes for the vernal equinox to move from one constellation of the zodiac into the next. This can be computed by dividing the earth’s 25,800-year gyroscopic precession period by twelve, the number of zodiac constellations used by astrologers. According to different astrologers’ calculations, approximate dates for entering the Age of Aquarius range from AD 1447 (Terry MacKinnell) to AD 3597 (John Addey).
Astrologers do not agree on when the Aquarian age will start or even if it has already started. Nicholas Campion in The Book of World Horoscopes lists various references from mainly astrological sources for the start of the Age of Aquarius. Based on Campion’s research, most published materials on the subject state that the Age of Aquarius arrived in the 20th century (29 claims), with the 24th century in second place with twelve claimants.
Astrological ages exist as a result of precession of the equinoxes. The slow wobble of the earth’s spin axis on the celestial sphere is independent of the diurnal rotation of the Earth on its own axis and the annual revolution of the earth around the sun. Traditionally this 25,800-year-long cycle is calibrated, for the purposes of determining astrological ages, by the location of the sun in one of the twelve zodiac constellations at the vernal equinox, which corresponds to the moment the sun rises above the celestial equator, marking the start of spring in the Northern Hemisphere each year. Roughly every 2,150 years the sun’s position at the time of the vernal equinox will have moved into a new zodiacal constellation. However zodiacal constellations are not uniform in size, leading some astrologers to believe that the corresponding ages should also vary in duration. This however is a contentious issue among astrologers.
In 1929 the International Astronomical Union defined the edges of the 88 official constellations. The edge established between Pisces and Aquarius officially locates the beginning of the Aquarian Age around AD 2600. Many astrologers dispute this approach because of the varying sizes and overlap between the zodiacal constellations.
Astrologers believe that an astrological age affects humanity, possibly by influencing the rise and fall of civilizations or cultural tendencies.
Traditionally, Aquarius is associated with electricity, computers, flight, democracy, freedom, humanitarianism, idealism, modernization, astrology, nervous disorders, rebellion, nonconformity, philanthropy, veracity, perseverance, humanity, and irresolution.
The variations of views among astrologers include:
- Among other dates, one view is that the Age of Aquarius arrived around 1844, with the harbinger of the Siyyid `Alí Muḥammad (1819–1850), who founded Bábism.
- Marcia Moore and Mark Douglas promoted the view that, although no one knows when the Aquarian Age begins, the American Revolution, the Industrial Revolution, and the discovery of electricity are all attributable to the Aquarian Age. Moore and Douglas make a number of predictions about the trends that they believe will develop in the Aquarian Age.
- A common position expressed by many astrologers sees the Age of Aquarius as that time when humanity takes control of the Earth and its own destiny as its rightful heritage, with the destiny of humanity being the revelation of truth and the expansion of consciousness, and that some people will experience mental enlightenment in advance of others and therefore be recognized as the new leaders in the world.
- Proponents of medieval astrology suggest that the Pisces world where religion is the opiate of the masses will be replaced in the Aquarian Age by a world ruled by secretive, power-hungry elites seeking absolute power over others; that knowledge in the Aquarian Age will only be valued for its ability to win wars; that knowledge and science will be abused, not industry and trade; and that the Aquarian Age will be a Dark Age in which religion is considered offensive.
- Another view suggests that the rise of scientific rationalism, combined with the fall of religious influence, the increasing focus on human rights since the 1780s, the exponential growth of technology, plus the advent of flight and space travel, are evidence of the dawning of the Age of Aquarius.
- A “wave” theory of the shifting Great Ages suggests that the Age of Aquarius will not arrive on a given date but is instead emerging in influence over many years, similar to how the tide surges forward incrementally rather than all at once.
- Rudolf Steiner believed that the Age of Aquarius will arrive in 3573. In Steiner’s approach, each age is exactly 2,160 years. Based on this structure, the world has been in the Age of Pisces since 1413. Rudolf Steiner had spoken about two great spiritual events: the return of Christ in the ethereal world (and not in a physical body), because people must develop their faculties until they can reach the ethereal world; and the incarnation of Ahriman, Zoroaster’s “destructive spirit” that will try to block the evolution of humanity.
- A variation of Steiner’s approach has the age of Aquarius arriving in 1433 (or up to two years earlier), with the influence of Pisces exceeding Aquarius at this time.[self-published source]
- In an article about feminism in the French newspaper La Fronde from February 26, 1890, August Vandekerkhove stated: “About March, 21st this year the cycle of Aquarius will start. Aquarius is the house of the woman”. He adds that is in this age the woman will be equal to the man.
What are these ages? Astronomers will tell you that the Earth rotates on an axis and that this line going through the center of the earth has a slight wobble to it. It goes through a little circular wobble about once every 24,000 years. This cycle has been broken into 12 parts associated with the 12 astrological signs, based on which constellation the axis is wobbling towards. From around 2000 B.C. to 0 A.D. we were in the Age of Aries. From 0 A.D. to the present we have been in the Age of Pisces.
For the next 2000 years we will be in the Aquarian Age. We have been in the transition from the Piscean Age to the Aquarian Age for the last 50 years. The official beginning of the Aquarian Age is November 11, 2011 or 11/11/11. Some people have set this date as December 21, 2012. Considering that this is a 2000 year cycle, no matter which date you accept, we are in for lots of change in the near future!
Why is this so important? Many people go their whole lives not caring or knowing if they are a Pisces, or a Gemini, or what their moon or rising sign is. This change to the Aquarian age is so important because it changes the astrological conditions for the entire planet. Every person on planet Earth has been and will be affected by this shift. Let’s investigate what will be changing.
The Piscean Age has been dominated by hierarchy, and power. The key phrase for this age was from Shakespeare’s Hamlet, “To be or not to be.” To make a successful and happy life, you needed to resolve this question. The key to the astrological sign Pisces is “I believe.” During this age, in order for you “to be,” you needed to find someone or something to believe in.
When you found that thing, you attached yourself to that thing and were guided how to live. This could be a religion, a political ideology, a charismatic leader, work, etc. The keys to life were hidden and secret in the halls of power and in the monasteries and ashrams. But you didn’t need to know these secrets, only to follow leaders and guides who did. This created vertical hierarchies as a result, and it was essential to find your place in the pecking order.
This has been the foundation for human consciousness for the past 2000 years. Everything that you have learned from your parents, and they from their parents, going back 2000 years, has been colored by this Piscean frame of reference. And now that is all changing.
The Aquarian Age will be dominated by networks, and information. The key phrase for this age is “Be to be.” The key to the astrological sign Aquarius is “I know.” This is the age of information. Nothing is secret anymore. All information is available at your fingertips. Where the Piscean age was organized in a vertical, up and down structure of hierarchies, the Aquarian Age is organized in a horizontal network, opening the world up to true equality.
During this age, the focus is no longer on your identity and existence (“to be or not to be”), but on accepting yourself as a whole person (“be to be”) who does not need to believe in something outside of yourself. You are ready to accept that you have the knowledge and wisdom within yourself. It is no longer necessary to attach to something outside yourself, but to become a leader of one: yourself. Instead of being a railroad car that is pulled by an engine, you become your own engine. It is your responsibility to stay on the tracks and to keep moving forward.
With this understanding, it is easier to comprehend what has been happening in the world over the last 50 years. On the inner level, since the 1960’s, there has been a huge movement towards personal transformation: self awareness, self improvement, yoga, meditation, tai chi, alternative healing, natural foods, etc. There has also been a major increase in depression, suicide, anxiety, stress, and drug use, both pharmaceutical and recreational.
In the outer world, we have seen amazing changes: civil rights, environmental consciousness, women’s rights, gay rights, global consciousness, etc. We have also seen the rise of fundamentalism, terrorism, partisan politics, racism, xenophobia (the fear of the “other”), and general fear mongering.
This shift is bringing out the best and the worst in mankind. Some people are preparing for this shift by opening their hearts and minds and embracing this new age, and some people are intimidated by the changes that they don’t understand and want to return to a “golden age” in the past, or to circle the wagons and trust only those who are like themselves.