Hi, friends! I decided to write this special blog post to give you an overview of the Age of Aquarius! In this post I’ll summarize some of the main aspects of this Age and also do some hypothesizing about what the future could look like…Let’s dive in!
To get a really in-depth overview of the energy of Aquarius, check out my post, “Aquarius: The Archetype”!
Before we delve into this topic, though, let me first explain what an “Age” actually is. In Astrology, we have what is called an “Astrological Age”, which is comprised of a roughly 25,860 year cycle which is divided into twelve Ages, with each smaller Age, approximately 2,160 years, being influenced by one of the twelve Signs/energies of the Zodiac. So one “Astrological Age” is like what we experience in one year, where we go through all twelve signs of the Zodiac and experience their energy, but this would be on a grand scale. Think of wheels within wheels.
While there are so many opinions out there about how to calculate the precise moment an Age begins and ends, the one I find most compelling is based on what we can actually see with the naked eye, as in Sidereal Astrology. The ancients used the method of visually tracking what was taking place on the eastern and western horizons in order to keep track of the clock-like function of the universe. This was the primary approach used before our “modern” notion of mathematics and most definitely used by the Babylonians and other ancient cultures around the world. With this approach, we focus on the rising constellation on the day of the vernal equinox to tell us when an Age begins. Right now the constellation of Pisces is still rising from March 12-April 18th (this includes its actual size), so it will be a few hundred years before the constellation of Aquarius takes its place.
This seems like the most simple and obvious method to me. But do we break this cycle down into 30 degree segments for each constellation, or do we use the ambiguous boundaries of the actual constellations to determine when an Age begins and ends? If we were to say the length of each Age was determined by the uneven sizes of the constellations then we would obviously have differing sized Ages…The Age of Scorpio would be very short! It’s like we’re working with a clock with twelve segments or houses of time that all differ in size. It’s possible, but I’m still not sure if this is the correct answer…And each Age, or 2,160 year segment, representing a precise 30 degrees of the wheel making for a perfect 360 degree circle is definitely convenient, but once again I’m not sure if it’s accurate…Maybe the answer is- it’s both!
But regardless of when this Age officially starts/or has started, we can all unanimously agree that we are seeing the energy of Aquarius operating in a very obvious and strong way in the world right now. With each passing year the attributes of this archetype become more visible than they did the previous year…So because of that fact, we can determine that we’re either approaching this Age or already in it…
To learn more about the “Astrological Ages” check out this Wikipedia article. You can scroll to the bottom and get a brief summary of what each Age was possibly about. Call me an Astro-nerd, but I think it’s really fun to hypothesize about what happened in each Age based on the ruling Sign/archetype of the time. What was humanity’s perception like? What were people focused on? What did they worship, build, do, create…? What would it be like to live in one of these Ages?
One day people will wonder about the Age we’re living in right now and they’ll have a hard time understanding why we created the things we did. If they found the remnants of our broken technology would they have any idea what we actually used it for? The concept of an ipad could be completely unfathomable…Much less YouTube, emojis, or how we were easily able to communicate with people all over the world within a split second. Unless you’re actually living and breathing and perceiving in a particular Age, it’s nearly impossible to truly understand it. I think the best thing we can do is take the twelve archetypal energies and apply their characteristics and symbols to each time period in order to gain an understanding of what it was really like.
So if we use this same mentality, what kinds of things would we expect to see in the Age of Aquarius? In this case, we have real-life examples to explore! All we have to do is take a gander into our own lives, and also into the world at large, to see what Aquarius looks like in action…
It’s no surprise that topics like human rights and sexual freedom are at the center of our focus right now because the energy of Aquarius is primarily concerned with human welfare and social reform. This archetype wants to transform broken systems, solve problems, and implement better and more efficient ways of doing things. Just because something has always been done, it doesn’t mean it’s the best way to do it, according to Aquarius. This energy wants to liberate humans so that they can fully express themselves and live in harmony with their own truths. Aquarius teaches us to respect the individual and give them the freedom to live how they see fit.
This can get tricky though because Aquarius is actually capable of becoming a fundamentalist in whatever dogma or beliefs it is pushing. This energy believes that it knows the best way to be and passionately wants to help others achieve certain liberties, but when someone else’s freedom of expression encroaches on our own freedoms, how are we to respond? This energy brings up topics like: is there such a thing as too much freedom? How many rights should humans have? Can humans be safely left up to their own devices? What rights should humans have in relation to the environment? As you can see, “rights” and “freedoms” are complicated issues that don’t necessarily have a one-size-fits all solution. Part of Aquarius’ task is to find a resolution that the majority are in favor of, but this inevitably takes time and the shifting of long-held beliefs and opinions. Beating people over the head with “the best way to live” is not necessarily going to help us make progress in terms of positive change, but we’re all capable of making impactful and revolutionary strides when we focus on changing our own lives first.
Aside from helping the world cultivate equal rights for all, this energy is focused on “humans” in general. Aquarius is a humanist at heart, meaning the human, or the “I”, is at the center of all things. What do I want to create? How do I want to express myself? How do I feel? How can I heal myself? How can I help the world? The individual human is in the spotlight. (This focus on the “I” or ego is also inevitably linked with the energy of Leo, the opposing energy of Aquarius, which we’ll discuss later). Aquarius also focuses largely on the collective and asks how does the “I” fit into the greater whole? This energy endeavors to create more freedom and progress for the sake of the individual as well as the collective.
Humanism, from the Latin, “humanitas”, has been thought to mean philanthropy as well as the study of Liberal Arts…or higher learning for the sake of helping/improving humanity. Today, we can see this “humanist” spirit alive and well on social media! There are countless ways in which humans are sharing their knowledge/wisdom/skills with others for the sake of improving society. Humans helping humans is the crux of Aquarius.
The environment is clearly an important issue for Aquarius…How we harmonize with, relate to, and treat nature are all topics of discussion right now. What’s interesting is that humans seem to be the only creatures capable of actually destroying their own environment for selfish reasons. Is this predicament also a bi-product of Aquarius/Leo energy? We become so engrossed in ourselves and our needs that we disregard our effect on everything else? Humanity has been focused on the “I” for a very long time and is just now becoming aware of how the “I” impacts the collective, and not just other humans, but the plant and animal kingdoms as well. People are beginning to realize that their own bodies are like miniature ecosystems that make up the greater whole, and that all systems, no matter how small, must maintain balance in order to create harmony.
Aquarius’ desire for freedom and equality also extends to animals…that’s why animal rights are becoming such a hot topic right now. And not only animal welfare and protection, but our literal consumption of them. Veganism is most definitely on the rise! At the root of a plant-based diet is a sincere and earnest desire to live in harmony with all creatures. To essentially, “do no harm.” And while many might think this movement is just a “passing trend”, this assumption doesn’t coalesce with the progress and rapid change we’re seeing in society towards establishing a plant-based diet. One of the gifts Aquarius bestows upon us is the power of awareness. Once we know the truth about something, whatever it is, we can never go back, regardless of how much we enjoyed it or how much it benefited us in some way…It becomes a matter of ethics and not simply one of preference. And when our “ethics” change, so do our desires.
As we continue moving forward in this Age the desire for harmony and equality with all things will only intensify. It’s possible that in the future, violence or harm towards any creature/the environment will be strictly prohibited, because even though Aquarius desires freedom, this energy also knows how to utilize laws in order to maintain those freedoms (thanks to Saturn). While humanity has been overly focused on laws for humans in relation to each other and society, those towards the environment have greatly lagged, and are only just now beginning to take precedence. It seems inevitable that these issues will only continue to intensify, thus mandating positive change in the particular areas of animal and environmental welfare. Our ability to make change is directly related to our awareness of the suffering/imbalance in the world, and thanks to technology, we’re quickly recognizing the issues and making rapid changes.
“Once we become aware, change is inevitable.”-Awakening the Wanderer
Secularism, as defined in the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is the “indifference to, or rejection or exclusion of, religion and religious considerations.” I think we can all agree that religion is on the decline. While people might still refer to themselves as “spiritual”, there is a growing desire to break free from the limiting shackles of traditional religion. People do not want to be told what to believe, how to behave, or how to live. They want to think for themselves and form their own conclusions about their body, mind, and soul, as well as the reality they inhabit. Or maybe they don’t even want to adhere to spirituality at all, and reject the notion of a “soul”… The point is, we are moving away from traditional religious values and ways of being. It’s no surprise then that current religious institutions would call this era, “The End Times”…because for them, it truly is. It’s the end of the Piscean Age with all of its values, religious dogma, and fundamentalism…
The energy of Aquarius does not adhere to any one thing, and as soon as you put it in a box, it will inevitably find a way out. We can see this fight for freedom from religion happening pretty much everywhere…even within religion itself! Humanity just can’t be tied down anymore to a particular system of beliefs that dictates every area of their lives…its crushing for the Aquarian spirit.
Is the New Age movement a replacement for those religious beliefs we’re just not ready to let go of yet? It offers a very free interpretation of reality, yet has its own worldview and varying degrees of beliefs. Will it last or fade away? Time will tell. It would seem, though, that what people are truly desiring is to find themselves independently, especially through nature/and or personal experience, and not necessarily through the words, advice, or teachings of another. The New Age movement is built upon the spiritual teachings/concepts of “prophets” or “ascended ones” advising people how to be pure, enlightened, and how to “live their best lives”…As you can see, this is really no different than religion, except instead of “God” we’re worshiping ourselves, or our connection with the “Divine”, and instead of “priests” we have “gurus”. However, the true Aquarian spirit forges its own path and finds these things out for itself through experimentation and curiosity. The New Age movement seems to be a combination of Aquarius energy, (open-mindedness, and a desire to find one’s self independently but also with the help of like-minded groups), Leo energy (primary focus on the SELF) and Piscean energy (spirituality, altered states of consciousness, esoteric/religious teachings).
Modernism goes hand in hand with secularism…it rejects the institution of religion and instead worships progress, industry, and creativity. Modernism took hold during the rapid changes of the 19th and 20th centuries, affecting every area of life from architecture and art, to philosophy, social organizations, and daily activities. The goal was to move away from out-dated, rigid, realist modes of expression and instead favor abstract, free-form and “new” ways of being. The 21st century is referred to as an era of Post-modernism, yet it doesn’t seem like the modernist point of view has gone anywhere. Many people are just now discovering freedom from the “traditional” and are learning to explore and express their more abstract sides, whether through poetry, painting, art, or how they choose to live. The desire to live a more minimalistic lifestyle in a world that favors materialism, or the desire to go vegan in a world of carnivores, or the push to be “spiritual” in a world of religions, all seem like rebellious off-shoots of modernism. The point is that people are seeking something different, something new, and more diverse ways to fully express themselves…And whatever the “current” system is, you can bet Aquarius will rebel against it!
“The mind, once stretched by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions.”-Ralph Waldo Emerson
And of course, we cant talk about Aquarius without mentioning technology…maybe the most telling sign that we are near, or already in, the Age of Aquarius. Electricity is at the core of this energy. An electrical charge for rapid change, growth, and awareness…Technology may seem like the thing of this Age but it’s actually not. It’s the means to an end. Why are we using technology? What are we actually using it for? To connect with each other, to connect with ourselves, to share ideas, to make changes, to fuel industry and progress, and to express ourselves in “new” and practically limitless ways. Technology inevitably brings up very Aquarian issues like: should natural energy be free for all? Is genetic manipulation ethical? Is technology actually helping humans and the environment, or is it hurting them? Are there better and more sustainable ways technology could be used for the good of all? The questions are endless…
The Opposite Sign
I also want to briefly mention that each Age also contains the opposite energy of its ruling Sign. So if we’re in the Age of Aquarius, the opposing energy on the Zodiac wheel would be Leo. These two energies would be working like a yin/yang, pushing and pulling each other as time goes on…And this really does seem to be the case! The abundance of Leo energy right now is expressed through our voracious interest in celebrities, media, fame, self-expression, creativity, royalty, children and entertainment. You can’t get more Aquarius/Leo than YouTube! A place where literally anyone can be famous and yet also change the world! And we can’t forget the theater of politics! Even religion is highly theatrical now…Can you think of any other strong expressions of Leo in the world? Check out my Leo posts to learn more about this energy!
No doubt, the great focus of the “I” in society right now is coming from this particular archetype, because while Aquarius definitely seeks to free its own consciousness and attain higher states of awareness, its end goal is to do this for the sake of humanity, whereas Leo energy expresses and creates for the sake of the “self”. So we can definitely see a blend of these two energies happening now. Creative self-expression and positive change go hand in hand!
One last thing I want to mention is Aquarius and its relation to water. I’ve always found it interesting that this energy is an “Air” Sign, meaning it’s focused on the mind, communication, information, ideas, creativity, and quick change, (like the element of electricity, it pierces the sky, allowing for illumination while it charges the atmosphere) AND it has the symbolism of a person pouring water from a jug. Where does water fit into all this? There is a theory that the Age of Aquarius actually corresponds to the myth of Noah and the Ark…And that the water symbolizes a time of purification, whether literal or figurative. Will water become the focus of this Age? Will it all end in a great deluge to purify the Earth? Will our relationship to water help us understand our own spiritual nature? I think all of the above could be possible!
“Know that the outward form passes away, but the world of reality remains forever. How long will you play at loving the shape of the jug? Leave the jug; go, seek the water!”-Rumi
The myth of the great deluge is also prevalent in Greek mythology where the “Noah” character, “Deucalion”, is spared in his ark, along with his wife, from a great flood that comes to punish the people for their misdeeds. The Babylonians referred to Aquarius as “The Great One” or the god “Ea”, who is commonly depicted as holding an overflowing vase. In Egypt, Aquarius was associated with the god Hapi and the overflowing of the Nile river. Aquarius the constellation is also located in the area of the sky referred to as the “Sea” or the “Water” because it consists of many water-related constellations such a Cetus the whale, Pisces the fish, and Eridanus the river…This is an interesting and ancient topic and something I’d like to explore further in the future!
Does the “Age of Aquarius” symbolize a literal, world-wide flood that happens once every 26,000 years? Or is it a time of enlightenment and purification? Or maybe the mythology simply personifies and symbolizes where the stars are in relation to each other during specific time periods so we can know where we are on the wheel of time! What do you think?
In conclusion…we’re still left with a lot of questions! I think the best way we can try and understand the future is to really understand where we are right now. Each choice we make will inevitably lead us down a particular path. Unfortunately, most futuristic books and movies only focus on negative, dystopian futures, but that’s only one possibility, not an inevitability. It’s no coincidence that the more we saturate ourselves with the digital world the more we understand how vital the real world is to our overall well-being. While it might seem that humanity is headed off a cliff, I really don’t think that’s the case. How many times in your own life have you taken things to the extreme to understand your own boundaries? Humanity is doing this on a grand scale with technology and entertainment. There’s that Aquarian/Leo push-and-pull going on that can make things seem chaotic, but the goal of this process is to reconcile the energies and find balance. My best advice is to work with these energies in your own life…that’s how you change the world. =)
Well, I think that pretty much sums up this topic for now! I know it was a lot of information! And even despite that, we’re still left with endless questions and ideas…but that’s a good thing! Stay curious and keep questioning. Let me know all your thoughts! Thank you so much for reading, and until next time…
All my love,
© Awakening the Wanderer.
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