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Age of Pisces

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Age of Pisces

An astrological age is a time period which astrology postulates parallel major changes in the development of Earth's inhabitants, particularly relating to culture, society and politics. There are twelve astrological ages corresponding to the twelve zodiacal signs in western astrology. At the completion of one cycle of twelve astrological ages, the cycle repeats itself. Astrological ages occur because of a phenomenon known as the precession of the equinoxes. One complete period of this precession is called a Great Year or Platonic Year[1] of about 25,920 years.[2]

There are two broad approaches about the effects upon the world due to the astrological ages. Some astrologers believe the changes upon Earth are caused and marked by the influences of the given astrological sign, associated with the Age, while other astrologers do not follow the causative model and believe it is a matter of synchronicity.[3]

Many astrologers believe that the Age of Aquarius has arrived recently or will arrive in the near future. On the other hand, some believe that the Age of Aquarius arrived up to five centuries ago, or will not start until six centuries from now.[4] Despite all references provided by various sources, astrologers cannot agree upon exact dates for the beginning or ending of the ages.

Various ages are described below, such as the Age of Aquarius.


There are three broad perspectives on the astrological ages:

  1. Archeoastronomers are interested in the ages because some researchers believe that ancient civilizations often depicted cultural references to the ages. Archeoastronomers in general do not 'believe' in astrology, but they study the cultural traditions of societies that did refer extensively to astrology.
  2. Astrologers have been interested in relating world history to the astrological ages since the late 19th century;[5] however, most astrologers study horoscopes, not astrological ages.
  3. The general public has become aware of the ages—or at least of the Age of Aquarius—since it was publicized in the musical Hair.[6] A number of unsubstantiated urban myths circulate about the astrological ages in various media.

Contentious aspects of the astrological ages

Definitive details on the astrological ages are lacking, and consequently most details and urban myths available about the astrological ages are contentious and disputed. The eminent 20th century British astrologer Charles Carter stated that

"It is probable that there is no branch of Astrology upon which more nonsense has been poured forth than the doctrine of the precession of the equinoxes." (Precession of the equinoxes is the root astronomical cause of the astrological ages)[7]

In 2000 Neil Spencer in his book True as the Stars Above expressed a similar opinion about the astrological ages. Spencer singles out the astrological ages as being "fuzzy", "speculative" and least defined area of astrological lore.[8] Derek and Julia Parker claim that it is impossible to state the exact date for the start of any astrological age and acknowledge that many astrologers believe the Age of Aquarius has arrived while many claim the world is at the end of the Age of Pisces.[9] Therefore a note of caution, claims about the astrological ages such as the Age of Aquarius should be taken with some scepticism, especially the urban myths widely propagated about the Age of Aquarius.

Ray Grasse states in Signs of the Times - Unlocking the Symbolic Language of World Events that "there is considerable dispute over the exact starting and ending times for the different Great Ages."[10] Paul Wright in The Great Ages and Other Astrological Cycles believes that much of the uncertainty related to the astrological ages is because many astrologers have a poor understanding of the meaning of the astrological symbolism and "even poorer historical knowledge".[11]

Consensus approach to the astrological ages

Though so many issues are contentious or disputed, there are two aspects of the astrological ages that have virtually unanimous consensus—firstly, the link of the astrological ages to the axial precession of the Earth and commonly referred to as precession of the equinoxes;[12] secondly, that, due to the nature of the precession of the equinoxes, the progression of the ages proceeds in reverse direction through the zodiacal signs.[13] Normally, during the course of the astrological year, commencing around 21 March at the vernal equinox, the Sun moves through the zodiacal signs commencing with Aries, then Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius and, finally, Pisces. After Pisces the Sun enters Aries and commences the cycle all over again. However, the astrological ages proceed in the reverse direction. Therefore, after the Age of Pisces, the next age is the Age of Aquarius, followed by the Age of Capricorn, and so on.

There is a third aspect of the astrological ages that has very wide consensus amongst astrologers. Though astrologers cannot agree upon the year, century or millennium for the start of any age, they generally agree upon the core historical events associated with the recent Ages since the start of the Holocene Epoch. For example, the Age of Leo with massive global warming that resulted in the deglaciation of Earth at the end of the last Ice Age, Age of Cancer with domestication and the Biblical Flood; the Age of Gemini is associated with the invention of writing, the Age of Taurus with Ancient Egypt and its massive pyramids, the Aries age with the Iron Age and the Age of Pisces with Christianity. Astrologers claim that each zodiacal sign has associated archetypes, which are often referred to traditionally as 'rulerships'. For example, Gemini rules the hands, dexterity and communication and draws upon all these archetypes to produce the first written word in the Age of Gemini, specifically in Sumer, Mesopotamia.

Are ages equal or of variable lengths based on the zodiacal constellations?

It is difficult to say which is the most popular method to divide the Great Year into twelve astrological ages. There are two popular methods. One method is to divide the Great Year into twelve astrological ages of approximately equal lengths of around 2160 years per age based on the vernal equinox moving through the sidereal zodiac.[14] Another method is to significantly vary the duration of each astrological age based on the passage of the vernal equinox measured against the actual zodiacal constellations.[15] Each of those twelve sections of the Great Year can be called either an astrological age, Precessional Age or a Great Month,[16] the last term being more common in earlier texts.

One issue with the variable length age method based on the zodiacal constellations is that many of these zodiacal constellations overlap. For example by 2700 the vernal point will have moved into the constellation of Aquarius, but due to the overlapping stars from the constellation of Pisces, the vernal point will also continue to point towards the constellation of Pisces.[17] This overlap is a problem if this literal approach to the zodiacal constellations is adopted.

Based on the astronomical division of the irregular constellations, the Austrian astronomer Professor Hermann Haupt examined the question of when the Age of Aquarius begins in an article published in 1992 by the Austrian Academy of Science: Der Beginn des Wassermannzeitalters, eine astronomische Frage? (The Start of the Aquarian Age, an Astronomical Question?), (see below The Age of Aquarius).

Age cusps

Many astrologers consider the entrance into a new astrological age is not a single moment of time but a process commonly referred to as `the cusp', by which one age initiates its influences in a slowly increasing way before the end of the previous age. For example, Ray Grasse states that an astrological age neither begins at an exact day or year.[18] Paul Wright states that cusps do not exist in horoscopic astrology (a planet is either in one zodiacal sign or the next), but a cuspal effect does occur at the border of the astrological ages. Consequently, the beginning of any age cannot be defined to a single year or a decade but blend its influences with the previous age for a period of time until the new age can stand in its own right.[19] Be that as it may, there is no consensus on this point. Basically, those that follow the cusp approach believe that there is a merging of influence between each adjoining ages. Many astrologers believe that the world is currently on the cusp of the Pisces and Aquarian ages, explaining why so many developments in the world today can be aligned to Pisces (i.e. continuing strong religious influences especially from Christianity) and Aquarius (traditional archetypes associated with Aquarius include electricity, computers and democracy). A few astrologers consider the last ca. 10 degrees of a given age (ca. 720 years) as the time period during which the new age starts to make visible its influences, also called "orb of influence". In Nicholas Campion's The Book of World Horoscopes there are six pages listing researchers and their proposed dates for the start of the Age of Aquarius indicating that many researchers believe that each age commences at an exact date.[20]

Robert Hand[21] adds another point of view about cusps in that the stars of the constellation of Pisces overlap the stars of the constellation of Aquarius. Technically, the vernal equinox enters the constellation of Aquarius in 2691 but does not leave the constellation of Pisces until 2817. Thus, between the years 2691 and 2817, the vernal equinox is pointing towards both the constellation of Pisces and the constellation of Aquarius.[22] This approach has no effect upon those astrologers that utilize twelve equal sized ages based on the sidereal zodiac.

Albert Amao Ph.D. states that the transition period between any two ages is based on one degrees either side of the point of intersection of two adjoining zodiacal constellations. As one degree is approximately 72 years, Amao has a transition period between ages of 144 years.[23]

Other opinions on the astrological ages

Though many approaches to the ages are conflicting, many different schools of thought have an established momentum but are generally not upheld by the majority of astrologers.

Ages exactly 2,000 years each

Many astrologers find ages too erratic based on either the vernal point moving through the randomly sized zodiacal constellations or sidereal zodiac and, instead, round all astrological ages to exactly 2000 years each. In this approach the ages are usually neatly aligned so that the Aries age is found from 2000 BC to AD 1, Pisces age AD 1 to AD 2000, the Aquarian age AD 2000 - AD 4000, and so on.[24] This approach is not consistent with the precession of the equinoxes. Based on precession of the equinoxes, there is a one degree shift approximately every 72 years, so a 30-degree movement requires 2160 years to complete.

Binary ages involving the opposite sign

There is also an established school of thought that believes each age's influences are also complemented by the opposite sign to the sign ruling the astrological age. For instance, the Age of Pisces is complemented by its opposite astrological sign of Virgo (the Virgin); for this reason, a few researchers refer to the Piscean age as the 'Age of Pisces-Virgo'.[25] Adopting this approach, the Age of Aquarius would become the Age of Aquarius-Leo. Ray Grasse also claims that each sign of the zodiac is part of a polarity involving the opposite sign.[26]

Mayan Long Count Calendar & Precession

William Sullivan in The Secret of the Incas contends that there is a direct connection between the history of the Incan Empire and precession of the equinoxes. John Major Jenkins in 'Maya Cosmogenesis 2012' believes that the Mayan Long Count Calendar is based on precession of the equinoxes and solstices.[27] Jenkins believes that the Maya related the precession of the winter solstice sunrise against the Milky Way—an event which is currently developing and supposedly instrumental in mankind's spiritual renewal.[28]

History of the Astrological Ages


The great demarcation point in the history of the astrological ages is around 127 BC when the Greek astronomer-astrologer Hipparchus from observation discovered that the great immovable sphere of fixed stars was not fixed but slowly moving eastwards due to what is now known as precession of the equinoxes. It is possible that some other astronomers before Hipparchus had also noticed the phenomenon but it is Hipparchus who has taken the fame. This discovery by Hipparchus is not entirely unexpected as Hipparchus is considered to have been the greatest observational astronomer in his time and up until Tycho Brahe in the 16th century AD. What is highly contentious in modern times is the claim by many that observation of the effects of precession of the equinoxes was known well before the time of Hipparchus and his contemporaries in Greece or even Mesopotamia. The academic answer is no – precession of the equinoxes was unknown in earlier times.

Did the Ancients Recognise Precession Before Hipparchus?

Giorgio de Santillana (1902 – 1974) became professor of the History of Science in the School of Humanities at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1954 and along with Hertha von Dechend they published a book entitled "Hamlet's Mill, An Essay on Myth and the Frame of Time" in 1969. It was an attempt to marry science and mythology that had become separated by the ancient Greeks. Santillana and von Dechend believed that the old mythological stories handed down from antiquity were not random fictitious tales but were accurate depictions of celestial cosmology clothed in tales to aid their oral transmission. The chaos, monsters and violence in ancient myths are representative of the forces that shape each age. They believed that ancient myths are the remains of preliterate astronomy that became lost with the rise of the Greco-Roman civilization.

Santillana and von Dechend state that ancient myths have no historical basis but a cosmological one based on a primitive form of astrology. They recognized the importance of the heliacally rising constellation as markers for the astrological ages and claimed that knowledge of this phenomenon had been known for thousands of years previously. They claim that to understand ancient thinking it is necessary to understand astrology, not the modern sun-sign or horoscopic astrology, but the astrology of ancient times which was the lingua franca of ancient times. They go further and state that our knowledge of the dawn of astrology and its relationship to ancient myths and star names is limited to about 2100 BC during the Renaissance of Sumerian Culture instead of being able to examine the real old material on the subject. In “Hamlet’s Mill” it is claimed that the ancient Greeks knew of three successive destructions that correlate to three ages and that since the beginning of history the vernal point has moved through Taurus, Aries and Pisces. Hesiod in “Works and Days” refers to five successive ages.[29]

As early as 1811, modern researchers were examining evidence for knowledge of precession of the equinoxes and astrological ages before Hipparchus. Sir William Drummond published "Oedipus Judaicus - Allegory in the Old Testament" in 1811. Drummund expounds on his hypothesis that a greater part of the Hebrew Scriptures are merely allegorical writings that hide the true content. Furthermore the Orientalists were mainly concerned with astronomy and most of their ancient myths are really disguised astronomical records.[30] Drummond believed that the 49th chapter of Genesis contains prophecies allied to astronomy and that the twelve tribes of Israel represented the 12 zodiacal signs.[31] Drummund makes his case that at the time of Abraham, the Amorites first recorded the shift from the Age of Taurus to the Age of Aries as represented by the year commencing with the Ram (Aries) rather than the bull (Taurus). The Book of Joshua indicates that by the time of Moses the equinoxes had already shifted from Taurus to Aries as Moses had ordained that the civil year should commence with the month of Nisan (Aries) rather than the month of Taurus. The feast of the Passover is probably a celebration of the Age of Aries with the Paschal Lamb representative of Aries, traditionally associated with the symbol of the ram or sheep.[32] Drummond also hypothesizes that most number references in ancient texts were coded to hide their real value by their multiplication by 1000 or multiples of 1,000. For example in the Old Testament Joshua commanded 30,000 men and he slew 12,000 inhabitants of the city of Ai. The historian Berosus stated the Babylonians commenced astronomical observations 490,000 years (7 x 7 x 1000) before Alexander the Great.[33] Most early references were related to 7 (Sun, Moon and five visible planets), 12 (number of zodiacal signs and months per year), 30 (degrees per sign of the zodiac)and higher combinations of these numbers and other numbers associated with astronomical observations and astrology.

The problem of understanding the exact nature of ancient astrology is that it was only partly documented, leaving the question of the extent of their undocumented astrological knowledge? Michael Baigent in "From the Omens of Babylon: Astrology and Ancient Mesopotamia", suggests that there is evidence that there was probably an older or parallel oral tradition of astrology at the time of publication of Enuma Anu Enlil[34] believed published over the period (1595–1157 BC). The ancient Mesopotamians believed that history repeated itself after a massive cycle of many years.[35]

Post Hipparchus


In the early post-Hipparchus period, two schools of thought developed about the slow shift of the fixed sphere of stars as discovered by Hipparchus. One school believed that at 1 degree shift per 100 years, the sphere of fixed stars would return to its starting point after 36,000 years. The trepidation school believed that the fixed stars first moved one way, then moved the other way - similar to a giant pendulum. It was believed that the ‘swinging’ stars first moved 8 degrees one direction, then reversed this 8 degrees travelling the other direction. Theon of Alexandria in the 4th century AD includes trepidation when he wrote Small Commentary to the Handy Tables. In the 5th century AD, the Greek Neoplatonist philosopher Proclus mentions that both theories were being discussed. The Indians around the 5th century AD preferred the trepidation theory but because they had observed the movement of the fixed stars by 25 degrees since ancient times (since around 1325 BC), they considered that trepidation swung back and forth around 27 degrees.

The significant early exponent of the ‘circular 36,000’ years method was Ptolemy, and due to the status placed upon Ptolemy by later scholars, the Christian and Muslim astronomers of the Middle Ages accepted the Great Year of 36,000 years rather than trepidation. However some scholars gave credence to both theories based on the addition of another sphere which is represented in the Alfonsine tables produced by the Toledo School of Translators in the 12th and 13th centuries. The Alfonsine tables computed the positions of the sun, moon and planets relative to the fixed stars. The Italian astronomer Cecco d'Ascoli, professor of astrology at the University of Bologna in the early 14th century, continued to have faith in trepidation but believed it swung 10 degrees in either direction. Copernicus refers to trepidation in De revolutionibus orbium coelestium published in 1543.[36]

Rate of Precession

Though the one degree per hundred years calculated for precession of the equinoxes as defined by Hipparchus and promulgated by Ptolemy was too slow, another rate of precession that was too fast also gained popularity in the 1st millennium AD. By the fourth century AD, Theon of Alexandria[37] assumed a changing rate (trepidation) of one degree per 66 years. The tables of the Shah (Zij-i Shah)[38] originate in the sixth century, but are unfortunately lost, but many later Arabic and Persian astronomers and astrologers refer to them and also use this value. These later astronomers-astrologers or sources include: Al-Khwarizmi, Zij al Sindhind or "Star Tables Based on the Indian Calculation Method"(c. 800); Tabulae probatae" or "az-Zig al-mumtan" (c. 830); Al-Battani, Albategnius, al-Zij (c. 880); and al-Sufi, Azophi (c. 965); Al Biruni (973-1048), "al Canon al Masud" or "The Masʿūdic Canon"; Arabic fixed star cataloque of 1st Oct. 1112 CE (ed. Paul Kunitzsch); and "Libros del Saber de Astronomía" by Alfonso X of Castile(1252-1284).[39] It is interesting to note that at one degree per 66 years, that one decan of a zodiacal sign (i.e. 10 degrees) is precessed in a period of 666 years - a value made famous in the Book of Revelations as the Number of the Beast .

Anno Domini

There exists evidence that the modern calendar developed by Dionysius Exiguus in the 6th century AD commencing with the birth of Jesus Christ at AD 1 was influenced by precession of the equinoxes and astrological ages. Dionysius' desire to replace Diocletian years (Diocletian persecuted Christians) with a calendar based on the incarnation of Christ was to prevent people from believing the imminent end of the world. At the time it was believed that the Resurrection and end of the world would occur 500 years after the birth of Jesus. The current Anno Mundi calendar theoretically commenced with the creation of the world based on information in the Old Testament. It was believed that based on the Anno Mundi calendar Jesus was born in the year 5500 (or 5500 years after the world was created) with the year 6000 of the Anno Mundi calendar marking the end of the world.[40][41] Anno Mundi 6000 (approximately AD 500) was thus equated with the resurrection of Christ and the end of the world.[42] Since this date had already passed in the time of Dionysius, he therefore searched for a new end of the world at a later date. He was heavily influenced by ancient cosmology, in particular the doctrine of the Great Year that places a strong emphasis on planetary conjunctions. This doctrine says that when all the planets were in conjunction that this cosmic event would mark the end of the world. Dionysius accurately calculated that this conjunction would occur in May AD 2000. Dionysius then applied another astronomical timing mechanism based on precession of the equinoxes. Though incorrect, some oriental astronomers at the time believed that the precessional cycle was 24,000 years which included twelve astrological ages of 2,000 years each. Dionysius believed that if the planetary alignment marked the end of an age (i.e. the Pisces age), then the birth of Jesus Christ marked the beginning of the Age of Pisces 2,000 years earlier. He therefore deducted 2,000 years from the May 2000 conjunction to produce AD 1[43] for the incarnation of Christ.[44][45][46][47]

Giovanni Pico della Mirandola

The 15th century Italian Renaissance philosopher Giovanni Pico della Mirandola published a massive attack on astrological predictions, but he did not object to all of astrology and he commented on the position of the vernal point in his day. Pico was aware of the effects of precession of the equinoxes and knew that the first point of Aries no longer existed in the constellation of Aries. Pico not only knew that the vernal point had shifted back into Pisces, he stated that in his time, the vernal point (zero degrees tropical Aries) was located at 2 degrees (sidereal) Pisces. This suggests that by whatever method of calculation he was employing, Pico expected the vernal point to shift into (sidereal) Aquarius age 144 years later as a one degree shift takes 72 years.[48]

Calculation aspects

The Earth, in addition to its diurnal (daily) rotation upon its axis and annual rotation around the Sun, incurs a precessional motion involving a slow periodic shift of the axis itself: approximately one degree every 72 years. This motion, which is caused mostly by the Moon's gravity, gives rise to the precession of the equinoxes in which the Sun's position on the ecliptic at the time of the vernal equinox, measured against the background of fixed stars, gradually changes with time.

In graphical terms, the Earth behaves like a spinning top, and tops tend to wobble as they spin. The spin of the Earth is its daily (diurnal) rotation. The spinning Earth slowly wobbles over a period slightly less than 26,000 years. From our perspective on Earth, the stars are ever so slightly `moving' from west to east at the rate of one degree approximately every 72 years. One degree is about twice the diameter of the Sun or Moon as viewed from Earth. The easiest way to notice this slow movement of the stars is at any fixed time each year. The most common fixed time is at the vernal equinox around 21 March each year.

In astrology, an astrological age has usually been defined by the constellation or superimposed sidereal zodiac in which the Sun actually appears at the vernal equinox. This is the method that Hipparchus appears to have applied around 127 BC when he calculated precession. Since each sign of the zodiac is composed of 30 degrees, each astrological age might be thought to last about 72 (years) × 30 (degrees) = about 2160 years. This means the Sun crosses the equator at the vernal equinox moving backwards against the fixed stars from one year to the next at the rate of one degree in seventy-two years, one constellation (on average) in about 2160 years, and the whole twelve signs in about 25,920 years, sometimes called a Platonic Year. However the length of the ages are decreasing with time as the rate of precession is increasing. Therefore no two ages are of equal length.

First point of Aries alignment - the fiducial point

Approximately every 26,000 years the zodiacal constellations, the associated sidereal zodiac and the tropical zodiac used by western astrologers basically align. Technically this is when the tropical and sidereal "first point in Aries" (Aries 0°) coincided. This alignment is often called the fiducial point, and if the fiducial point could be found, fairly exact timeframes of all the astrological ages could be accurately determined (if the method used to determine the astrological ages is based on the equal-sized 30 degrees per age and do not correspond to the exact constellation configuration in the sky). However this fiducial point is difficult to determine because while there is no ambiguity about the tropical zodiac used by western astrologers, the same cannot be said of the sidereal zodiac used by Vedic astrologers. Vedic astrologers do not have unanimity on the exact location in space of their sidereal zodiac. This is because the sidereal zodiac is superimposed upon the irregular zodiacal constellation, and there are no unambiguous boundaries of the zodiacal constellations. Modern day astronomers have defined boundaries, but this is a recent development by astronomers who are divorced from astrology, and cannot be assumed to be correct from the astrological perspective. While most astronomers and some astrologers agree that the fiducial point occurred in or around the 3rd to 5th centuries AD, there is no consensus on any exact date or tight timeframe within these three centuries. A number of dates are proposed by various astronomers and even wider timeframes by astrologers. (For an alternative approach to calibrating precession, see Alternative Approach to Calibrating Precession in New, alternative, and fringe theories section below).

As an example of a mystic contemporary approach to precession, in Max Heindel's astrology writings,[49] it is described, that last time the starting-point of the sidereal zodiac agreed with the tropical zodiac occurred in AD 498. A year after these points were in exact agreement, the Sun crossed the equator about fifty seconds of space into the constellation Pisces. The year following it was one minute and forty seconds into Pisces, and so it has been creeping backwards ever since, until at the present time the Sun crosses the equator in about nine degrees in the constellation Pisces. Based on this approach, it will thus be about 600 years before it actually crosses the celestial equator in the constellation Aquarius. However this is only one of many approaches and so this must remain speculation at this point of time.

Past ages

The Age of Leo (The Leonian Age)

Symbol for Leo:

  • the vernal equinox (northern hemisphere) is occurring in Leo;


  • Zodiacal 30 degrees:
    • Patrick Burlingame interpretation: began in ca. 10,006 and ended in ca. BC 8006
    • Common interpretation: ca. 10,500 BC to 8000 BC.

Overview "The Golden Age"
Historical similarities

The major event at this time was an ancient global warming to such a massive extent that it led to the deglaciation of what now constitutes much of the modern habitable world. The deglaciation ultimately caused a 300-foot (90 m) rise in the sea level. The sign Leo is a Fire sign and is traditionally ruled by the Sun in astrology, and it is entirely appropriate that in an Age ruled by the Sun, that the warmth of the Sun melted the glaciers that covered much of North America and Europe. Leo is also related to any kind of light source, and the carved stone oil lamp was invented during this time (Oil lamps existed previously, but this type was the first proper continuously burning lamp).

The Age of Cancer (The Cancerian Age)

Symbol for Cancer:

The zodiacal signs:

  • the vernal equinox (northern hemisphere) is occurring in Cancer;


  • Zodiacal 30 degrees:
    • Neil Mann interpretation:[50] began in ca. 8600 BC and ended in ca. 6450 BC.
    • Patrick Burlingame interpretation: began in ca. BC 8006 and ended in ca. BC 6006
  • Constellation boundary year:
    • Shephard Simpson interpretation:[51]

Overview "The Age of the Great Mother." Cancer is ruled by the Moon, and is associated with the process of bearing, birthing, nurturing, and protecting.
Historical similarities The Neolithic Revolution, including the beginning of civilization, with domestication of farm animals including pigs, goats and bees. Some nomadic people settled down to living in permanent dwellings. For example, the city of Jericho, believed constructed during this age, was protected by a wall 12–17 ft (4 to 5 m) high & 5 ft (1.5 m) thick. (Cancer is always associated with 'protection' by utilizing an external barrier). There is also evidence of massive loss of coastal regions by the rising sea level following deglaciation of many areas on Earth. This loss of land caused the forced relocation of people to higher ground. Cancer's list of archetypes always include anything to do with the home (including houses, place of residence, migration).

Evidence of widespread use of boats (maritime vessels of all types are ruled by Cancer).

Rise of pottery (a protective vessel conforming to one of Cancer's archetypes).

Religious similarities Widespread evidence of the mother goddess in the Near East (the `mother' archetype in all shapes and forms is always related to the sign Cancer).

The Age of Gemini (The Geminian Age)

Symbol for Gemini:

The zodiacal signs:

  • the vernal equinox (northern hemisphere) is occurring in Gemini;


  • Zodiacal 30 degrees:
    • Neil Mann interpretation: began in ca. 6450 BC and ended in ca. 4300 BC.
    • Patrick Burlingame interpretation: began in ca. BC 6006 and ended in ca. BC 4006
  • Constellation boundary year: (not calculated).
    • Shephard Simpson interpretation: (none).

Overview "The Age of Communication, Trade and the Twins"
Historical similarities During this age writing developed,[dubious ] and trade started to accelerate. This corresponds to the symbols the Gemini constellation represents. The constellation can be seen as two people holding hands (thought to be twins), believed by some to be symbolic for trade and communication of peoples. Regardless of the lore associated with the constellation of Gemini, both writing (including literature, newspapers, journals, magazines and works of fiction) and trade (including merchants) are traditional archetypes belonging to the sign of Gemini.

The wheel, although having been used earlier as potter's wheels, was used for the first time for transportation purposes around the 5th millennium BC. Most forms of local transportation (horse and cart, bicycles, suburban trains, trams, cars, motorcycles, walking, roads, freeways etc.) are archetypes associated with the sign of Gemini.
Religious similarities Multiple gods, such as the pantheon of gods in Ancient Greek literature, are believed to have appeared in this Gemini age[dubious ] probably in Sumer (Mesopotamia).[dubious ] (Gemini not only is associated with the archetype of `twins' and `duality' but also 'multiplicity')

The Age of Taurus (The Taurean Age)

Symbol for Taurus:

The zodiacal signs:

  • the vernal equinox (northern hemisphere) is occurring in Taurus;


  • Zodiacal 30 degrees:
    • Neil Mann interpretation: began in ca. 4300 BC and ended in ca. 2150 BC.
    • Patrick Burlingame interpretation: began in ca. BC 4006 and ended in ca. BC 2006
  • Constellation boundary year:
    • Shephard Simpson interpretation: began ca. 4525 BC to ca. 1875 BC

Overview "The Age of Earth, Agriculture and the Bull"

Historical similarities Bull worshiping cults began to form in Assyria, Egypt, and Crete which relates to Taurus symbolizing the bull.

Main article: Bull (mythology)

This age is notable for the building of the Pyramids, during the Old Kingdom of Egypt and the Middle Kingdom of Egypt. They personify structure, solidity, stability and attempts at eternity, keywords of Taurus. The completed Great Pyramid of Khufu, clad in smooth pure white limestone, must have been a sight of dazzling beauty in the sunlight. Beauty is another keyword of Taurus.

Taurus is associated with the metal copper, and bronze (an alloy of copper and tin) was for the first time smelted and worked into bronze swords during the early phase of this era.

Papyrus was invented during this time, enabling improved writing techniques. It could be manufactured into very long strips that could be rolled (but not yet folded) into scrolls or rolls for efficient storage and handling. (The Taurus glyph invokes the image of the partially unrolled scroll).

Traits of Taurus such as 'stubbornness' and 'strength' but at the same time 'sensuality' may be attributed to civilizations such as Ancient Egypt's.

Religious similarities

The Age of Aries (The Arian Age)

Symbol for Aries:

The zodiacal signs:

  • the vernal equinox (northern hemisphere) is occurring in Aries;


  • Zodiacal 30 degrees:
    • Neil Mann interpretation: began in ca. 2150 BC and ended in ca. 1 AD.
    • Patrick Burlingame interpretation: began in ca. BC 2006 and ended in ca. BC 6
  • Constellation boundary year:
    • Shephard Simpson interpretation: began ca. 1875 BC to ca. 100 AD

Overview "The Age of War, Fire and the Ram"
Historical similarities Aries represents a Fire symbol as well as bold actions, a lot of these behaviors can be seen during any age. However, the themes emphasised during this age relate to courage, initiative, war & adventure. Nations during this age such as the expanding empires of China, Persia, Greece and Rome, are often cited as examples of the archetypes of Aries in action. Also the Aries constellation shows a ram running. This could correspond with the sacrifice of Abraham's Ram. While the number of names containing the sound of the ram during this period is noted: Ra (Sun God), Ram, Rama, Brahman, Brahma, Abram/Abraham, Amon Ra, and Ramesses I.[dubious ] The battering ram was employed by the Assyrians, Greeks and Romans with great success during this time.[dubious ] (The symbol of Mars, the planetary ruler of Aries, evokes this interpretation.) According to the Roman state religion, the Roman people were the "Sons of Mars".

Aries is associated with the metal iron, and iron ore was for the first time smelted and worked into iron swords in Anatolia during the early phase of this era, replacing the heavier, softer-metalled, duller-edged bronze swords of the previous Taurus Age.

Traits of Aries such as 'initiative' may suggest the explosion of originality in the development of social aspects, sciences and arts in regions such as Ancient Greece but at the same time traits such as 'Impulsivity' may be attributed to the various Wars of the time.

Religious similarities The Age of Aries ushered in efforts to replace polytheism with monotheism. The earliest known attempt was by the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten, who, in about 1350 BC, decreed the Sun God Aten to be the supreme deity, apparently in reaction to his earlier lack of inclusion in religious rites by his family. After his death, however, power reverted to the original polytheistic priests, who re-established the old religion. Speculation (including that of Freud) has it that later, during the reign of Ramesses II, Moses was influenced by rumour of Akhenaten's revolutionary idea, and grasped the idea of a single supreme God, who especially favoured his people, as an inspirational mechanism that best suited his people held in bondage. The symbol of Aries can be seen as representing the power of multiple gods streaming down into a single god-head.

Moses (born c. 16th–13th Century BC; 7 Adar 2368 – 7 Adar 2488 in the Hebrew calendar), an early Biblical Hebrew religious leader, lawgiver, prophet, and military leader, condemns his own people upon finding them worshiping a 'golden calf' (a symbol of the previous Age of Taurus and of the worship of the bull deity) after coming down Mount Sinai. These events may have occurred during the Age of Aries (see also Dating the Exodus overview).
See also:

The Age of Pisces (The Piscean Age)

Symbol of Pisces:

The zodiacal signs:

  • the vernal equinox (northern hemisphere) is occurring in Pisces;

The Age of Pisces is technically the current age and some astrologers believe it will remain so for approximately another 600 years. At that time, the vernal equinox point will no longer be facing Pisces, but moved into the constellation of Aquarius, thus beginning the Age of Aquarius. However, there are many astrologers who believe that the Age of Aquarius has already arrived or will arrive soon.


  • Zodiacal 30 degrees:
    • Neil Mann interpretation: began in ca. AD 1 and ends in ca. AD 2150.
    • Heindel-Rosicrucian interpretation: began in ca. AD 498 and ends in ca. AD 2654
    • Patrick Burlingame interpretation: began in ca. BC 6 and ended in ca. AD 1994
    • Mayan: ended 21 December 2012
  • Constellation boundary year:
    • Shephard Simpson interpretation: began ca. 100/90 BC and ends ca. AD 2680.


"The Age of Monotheism, Spirituality, and the Fish"

Historical similarities

The Age of Pisces is characterized by the Christian age. The fish is thought to have been chosen as a symbol for Chritianity by the early Christians primarily because Jesus' ministry is associated with fish: he chose several fishermen to be his disciples and declared he would make them "fishers of men." The Age of Pisces corresponds with the Christian Era. Pisces is associated with the continuous research of humanity about the truth hidden behind what's perceived by five senses, which corrresponds with the mysteries associated with Christ's life.

The Age of Aquarius (The Aquarian age)

Main article: Age of Aquarius

Symbol for Aquarius:

The zodiacal signs:

  • the vernal equinox (northern hemisphere) is occurring in Aquarius;

Timeframes In 1928, at the Conference of the International Astronomical Union (IAU) in Leiden, the Netherlands, the edges of the 88 official constellations became defined in astronomical terms. The edge established between Pisces and Aquarius locates the beginning of the Aquarian Age around the year 2600.

The Austrian astronomer, Professor Hermann Haupt,[52] examined the question of when the Age of Aquarius begins in an article published in 1992 by the Austrian Academy of Science: with the German title "Der Beginn des Wassermannzeitalters, eine astronomische Frage?" ("The Start of the Aquarian Age, an Astronomical Question?"). Based on the boundaries accepted by IAU in 1928, Haupt's article investigates the start of the Age of Aquarius by calculating the entry of the spring equinox point over the parallel cycle (d = - 4°) between the constellations Pisces and Aquarius and reaches, using the usual formula of precession (Gliese, 1982), the year 2595. However Haupt concludes:

"Though it cannot be expected that astrologers will follow the official boundaries of the constellations, there will be an attempt to calculate the entry of the spring equinox point into the constellation of Aquarius." ...
"As briefly has been shown, the results and methods of astrology in many areas, such as concerning the Aquarian age, are controversial on their own and cannot be called scientific because of the many esoteric elements."[53]
  • Zodiacal 30 degrees:
    • Patrick Burlingame interpretation: began in ca. AD 1994
    • Neil Mann interpretation: begins AD 2150.
    • Dane Rudhyar's interpretation states that the Age of Aquarius will begin in AD 2062.
    • Nicholas Campion in The Book of World Horoscopes indicates that he has collected over 90 dates provided by researchers for the start of the Age of Aquarius and these dates have a range of over 2,000 years commencing in the 15th century AD.[54] The range of dates for the possible start of the Aquarian age range from 1447 to 3621.
  • Constellation boundary year:
    • Shephard Simpson interpretation: begins in ca. AD 2680.
    • Hermann Haupt interpretation begins in ca. AD 2595.
    • Michael Sidi interpretation begins in ca. AD 2720.
    • Mayan Calendar / Egyptian Cycle of the Phoenix begins AD 21 December 2012.

Overview "The Age of Freedom, Technology (especially space travel and electricity), and the Water Bearer"
There is an expectation that the Aquarian age will usher in a period of group consciousness.[55] Marcia Moore and Mark Douglas claim that the lighting up of the earth artificially by electricity is a sign of the Age of Aquarius.[56] Furthermore they see the appearance of dictators, self-expression and the rising influence of the entertainment industry are linked to the Aquarian age by its opposite sign Leo.

Popular culture In popular culture, the expression "Age of Aquarius" usually refers to the heyday of the hippie and New Age movement of the 1960s and 1970s. The 1967 successful musical Hair, with its opening song "Aquarius" and the memorable line "This is the dawning of the age of Aquarius", brought the Aquarian Age concept to the attention of a huge worldwide audience. This New Age phenomenon is seen by some astrologers to be marked by the conjunction of the planet Uranus, ruler of the sign Aquarius, and the coming age, with Pluto, ruler of the masses, bringing radical change, in the 1960s. However, as the song relates, it is only considered by astrologers as the "dawning" or "cusp" of the Age, with the full strength of the Age not occurring until some time in the future.

Historical similarity: Current/Projected

Traits of Aquarius such as being 'humanitarian' but at the same time 'unemotional' may indicate to the emergence of active intergovernmental organisations and global solidarity movements. Alternatively, it may indicate individual New Age spiritual awakening en masse, which although is not organized, spontaneously forms a worldwide 'humanitarian' yet 'unemotional' era of spiritual clarity and spontaneous friendship.

See also

The sub-periods of ages

Many research astrologers believe that the astrological ages can be divided into smaller sections along the lines of `wheels within wheels’. The most common method is to divide each astrological ages into twelve sub-periods.[57] There are two common ways of undertaking this process and two ways of applying these sub-periods. Furthermore some astrologers divide the ages in different ways. For example Lcdr David Williams employs a decanate sub-division whereby each age is divided into three equal sections.[58] Robert Hand developed another approach entirely whereby the conjunction of the moving vernal point with specific stars within the zodiacal constellations provides an extra flavour to the corresponding historical events based on the nature of the star involved.[59] However Robert Hand believes that the moving Capricorn solstice point (around 20 December) near the modern New Year provides greater correlation to historical events compared to the vernal equinox. Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet used a variety of sub-periods including decans, but Patrizia advocated that the ninefold division of each sign was the most powerful and influential sub-division.[60] The ninefold division (termed 'navamsa') of the zodiacal signs is also the most popular sign sub-division system employed by Vedic astrologers. Vedic astrologers also apply their nakshatra star asterisms in place of the twelve zodiacal constellations. There are 27 nakshatras of 13 degrees 20 minutes each, thus the average length of a 'nakshatra' age is 960 years.

Aries to Pisces sub-periods

The most popular method of sub-dividing astrological ages is to divide each age equally into twelve sub-periods with the first sub-period Aries, followed by Taurus, Gemini and so on until the last sub-division, Pisces. Charles Carter was an early advocate of this approach.[61] Technically this approach is based on the twelfth harmonic of the zodiacal signs.

Dwadasamsa sub-periods

The alternative approach is to apply a method commonly used in Vedic astrology but with long antecedents also in western astrology.[62] This method also divides each astrological age into twelve sub-periods but the first sub-period for each sign is the same as the sign itself, then with the following sub-periods in natural order. For example the twelve dwadasamsa of Aquarius are Aquarius, Pisces, Aries, Taurus and so on until the last dwadasamsa – Capricorn. Technically this approach is based on attributes of both the twelfth and thirteenth harmonics of the zodiacal signs and can be considered to be halfway between the 12th and 13th harmonics.

Sub-period direction (forward or retrograde?)

There are two ways of applying the above sub-periods to the astrological ages.

  • Natural Order - The most common way is to arrange the sub-periods so that they go forward in the natural order. Therefore if the Aries to Pisces method is adopted for example in the Aquarian age, the first sub-period is Aries, followed by Taurus, Gemini and so on until the last sub-division – Pisces. This is the approach made by Charles Carter. If the dwadasamsa sub-period is adopted they also progress in the natural order of the signs. For example the twelve dwadasamsa of Aquarius are Aquarius, Pisces, Aries, Taurus and so on until the last dwadasamsa – Capricorn.
  • Geometric Order (Retrograde) - The other approach is to arrange the sub-periods geometrically and reverse the direction of the sub-periods in line with the retrograde order of the astrological ages. For example if applying the Aries to Pisces method, the first sub-period of any astrological age is Pisces, followed by Aquarius, Capricorn and so on until the last sub-period – Aries. Charles Carter indicated there was some merit to this approach.[63] If applying the dwadasamsa sub-period system geometrically for example the first sub-period in the Aquarian age is Capricorn, followed by Sagittarius, Scorpio and so on until the last sub-period – Aquarius. This approach is adopted by Terry MacKinnell,[64] Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet[65] and Lcdr David Williams applied his [decans] (threefold division) geometrically thus supporting this approach.

New, alternative, and fringe theories

Due to the lack of consensus of almost all aspects of the astrological ages, except for the astrological ages relationship to precession of the equinoxes and the retrograde order of the astrological ages, there are more alternative, esoteric, innovative, fringe and newly expressed ideas about the astrological ages probably than any other branch of astrology. For this reason, most ideas and theories of the astrological ages appear in this section if they have not established credibility in the wider astrological community or amongst archeoastronomers.

The inclusion of any theory, approach or concept of the astrological ages in this section in no way indicates or suggests that they are incorrect or wrong (partially or fully), but they have not yet received widespread acceptance. In addition, the inclusion of any fringe approach in this section does not grant the approach any validity by their inclusion in this topic.

Alternative approach to calibrating precession

Terry MacKinnell has developed an alternative approach to calibrating precession of the equinoxes for the purposes of determining the Astrological Age. His major point of departure from the traditional modern approach is how he applies the vernal equinox to the zodiacal constellations. Instead of referring to the position of the Sun at the vernal equinox (a ‘modern’ mathematical technique developed by the Greeks in the late 1st millennium BC), he refers to the heliacal rising constellation on the day of the vernal equinox. This approach is based on the ancient approach to astronomical observations (the same ancient period that also saw the invention of the zodiacal constellations) prior to the development of mathematical astronomy by the ancient Greeks in the 1st millennium BC. All ancient astronomical observations were based on visual techniques.[66] Of all the key techniques used in ancient times, the most common in Babylon (most likely the source of astrology) and most other ancient cultures were based on phenomena that occurred close to the eastern or western horizons.[67] MacKinnell claims that it is incongruent to use a ‘modern’ mathematical approach to the much older constellations that were first described well before these mathematical approaches were invented.

The heliacal rising constellation at the vernal equinox is based on the last zodiacal constellation rising above the Eastern Horizon just before dawn and before the light of the approaching Sun obliterates the stars on the eastern horizon. Currently at the vernal equinox the constellation of Aquarius has been the heliacal rising constellation for some centuries. The stars disappear about one hour before dawn depending upon magnitude, latitude and date. This one hour represents approximately 15 degrees difference compared to the contemporary method based on the position of the Sun amongst the zodiacal constellations. Each age is composed of 30 degrees. Therefore 15 degrees represents about half an age or about 1080 years. Therefore based on the heliacal rising method, the Age of Aquarius arrived about 1,080 years early than the modern system. John H Rogers in part one of his paper Origins of the ancient constellations also states that using the ancient heliacal rising method compared to the (modern) solar method produces a result that is approximately 1,000 in advance.[68]

Using MacKinnell's approach, the Astrological Ages arrive about half an age earlier compared to the common contemporary approach to calibrating precession based on ‘modern’ mathematical techniques. Therefore Terry MacKinnell has the Aquarian age arriving in the 15th century while most astrologers have the Age of Aquarius arriving in the 27th century, almost 700 years in the future.[69]

Popular culture

  • The movie Aquarian Age, released in Japan in 2008. Directed by Hidetaka Tahara and starring Dori Sakurada, Rakuto Tochihara, Takuya Uehara, Keita Kimura, Toshikiyo Fujii, Nao Nagasawa, Go Ayano and Masami Horiuchi. This movie is based on the Japan's most popular domestic trading card game, the characters from the female-oriented Juvenile Orion spinoff. The story focuses on several high school boys who discover that they inherited latent genetic traits from among other things, wings that sprout out of their backs. They soon find themselves caught in a millennia-old war, with each representing one of several different factions.[70]
  • Aquarian Age (アクエリアンエイジ, Akuerian Eiji?) is a Japanese collectible trading card game similar to Magic: The Gathering. It is marketed and produced by Broccoli, which produces games and Anime-related goods.
  • The 1967 rock musical Hair featured the song "Age of Aquarius" (composed by Galt MacDermot, James Rado and Gerome Ragni), which spoke of the coming age; a recording of the song by The 5th Dimension was a top-ten pop hit in 1969.
  • The first section of the film 'Zeitgeist' presents a theory of astrological ages that proposes that many events in world religions, such as Moses' condemnation of the Golden Calf and Jesus' ministry, are merely allegories used to describe astrological events. The narrator of the film implies that Biblical characters, such as Jesus, never existed as real human beings but are rather metaphors for constellations and ages.

See also

Astrology portal


External links

Astrological ages

  • The Grand Ages
  • The Astrological Great Year
  • Astrological Age
  • Precession of the Equinoxes
  • Precession of the Earth's Axis
  • Alternative View of the Astrological Ages
  • The Dawn of Aquarius - From the Piscean Age to the Aquarian

Age of Aquarius

  • Rosicrucian Age of Aquarius
  • New Age of Aquarius by Jamis Lopez
  • The Aquarian Age by Elsa M Glover
  • Shepherd Simpson: The Age of Aquarius
  • Shepherd Simpson: Searching for a New Age..
  • Sepp Rothwangl: Considerations About the Start of the Age of Aquarius
  • TheAQUARIANproject.Net
  • The Age of Pisces and the Age of Aquarius
  • 2006 International Conference - Globalisation or Aquarius: Are 'we' talking from the same thing?
  • Demystifying the Aquarian Age
  • Drawing Down the Fire of the Gods: Reflections on the Leo/Aquarius Axis by Ray Grasse

Age of Pisces

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