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About The Age of Aquarius Planning Committee

What is the Age of Aquarius and what does it mean?

I'm sure it wasn't the first time the term "Age of Aquarius" was coined but it certainly was the event that brought the idea into the popular consciousness when the 5th Dimension released a medley originally created for the musical Hair in 1967 known as "Aquarius/Let the Sun Shine in.". Released as a single by the 5th dimension in 1969, it became one of the most popular songs that year worldwide, peaking at number one for six weeks on the US Billboard Hot 100 in the spring of 1969; it remains one of Billboard's greatest songs of all time. Naturally at the time the song evoked much criticism from the astrological community of the day as to the inaccuracies and meaninglessness of the lyrics of the song in relation to "real" astrology, but then it never claimed to be anything other than poetic license. It was just a song. But the way that it resonated with the 60's generation, and indeed, throughout the world gives us pause to consider the phenomenon itself from a different viewpoint, that of the Swiss Physchiatrist Dr. Carl Jung who lived from the 1880's to the early 1960's. To Jung's point of view the idea of astrological ages hearkens to what he called "Archetypes of the Unconscious", the collection deeply imbedded within the human psyche of powerful symbols affecting human consciousness. Such symbols include religious symbols which are in many ways the psychic mechanism which is the source of the religious instinct in humans. Often such powerful arechetypes appear at a time when overall human consciousness is undergoing a shift in its knowledge of, and relation to, the world within which it exists. An example of what such a shift means can be illustrated by the development by Einstein of a completely different understanding of the building blocks of the universe and of the relationship between Time and Space, Matter and Energy. This further evolved into quantum theory explaining this strange Einsteinian Universe in terms of the mysterious paradoxes that occur in the world beneath the solid substances we used to think of as atoms. As a result entirely different and previously unknown technologies were developed transforming how we live on this planet and paradoxically threathen our very existence at the same time.

Jung believed that there was a relationship between appearances of archetypal images in the outer world and deep inner changes occurring within the psyche, an acausal affect he termed "synchronicity". Synchronicity is a recognition within the psyche of a meaningful connection between otherwise unrelated events occurring within one's own consciousness. Its simplest manifestation occurs in a phenomenon we call "coincidence", seeing a subtle connection between unrelated events that gives an appearance that they are part of another experience or feeling of relatedness. Not to get lost in technicality, the point is that this song appeared at a time when young people in the United States, and indeed around the world, were initiating a massive change in culture, religion, politics and accepted norms of behavior. The appearance in the consciousness of the world of an astrological shift of enormous importance in the world of astrology became common knowledge, albeit superficially, at the same time the generation was entertaining an explosion of what astrologers would consider Aquarian ideas. Coincidence... or synchronicity?

Astronomically the idea of ages based on the signs of the zodiac has to do with the fact that everything in the universe is moving in relationship to everything else. Planets move in relation to the sun, but the sun also moves in relation to the stars which are really just other suns whose sizes are hidden because of the vast distances separating them from ourselves. This manifests itself in the movement of two points considered otherwise fixed, in this case, the pole star, or star directly overhead the north pole, and the rest of the stars of the galaxy that have become identified with images of the zodiac so they can be catalogued, as it were. We have always been taught the the north pole can be used for guiding ships at night by the stars, for example, because it is fixed where it appears every night. But in fact it actually moves an imperceptible degree in the sky every 72 years, a phenomenon known as the "precession of the equinoxes", so that the north star over a very long period of time points toward a slightly different section of the sky, and the galactic background that is the zodiac. Moving one degree every 72 years, it will move completely through one section of the sky identified with one zodiacal sign every 30 times 72 years, or 2,160 years. This movement actually occurs in the reverse direction of the zodiac from what other moving objects like planets travel, and so around the beginning of the common era, this star changed from pointing at Aries to pointing at Pisces, and began the age called the Age of Pisces. The idea is that period of 2,160 years will display characteristics, whether in events or culture, pertaining to the sign of Pisces. The most notable of such correspondences is with Christianity whose earliest adherents used the symbol of the fish, the disciples were fishers of men, and so on. The ending age of Aries was the age of conquest and empires, the preceding period of Taurus associated with cultivation of the earth and the mother goddess.

It is important to understand that this is the conceptual description of the precession of the equinoxes. The exact "boundaries" of signs are quite nebulous and so astrology is for the most part based on a superimposed mathematical exactness dividing the 360 degrees of a circle into 12 segments exactly 30 degrees each. Attempting to ascribe such mathematical preciseness to essentially human pattern recognition superimposed on the "dots" visible at night as stars will utterly fail as a description of the universe. So the exact boundaries of ages is a nebulous concept that can be described as similar to the conversion of analog waves into discrete digital approximations. Waves and particles are one of those strange characteristics of the Post-Einsteinian universe; sometimes things like light act like they're particles, but other times waves, and even weirder, you can't observe both of them at the same time, and weirder yet, what you see depends a lot on what you were looking for. It's like you're part of the whole experience, not just an objective observer. In a similar way, time is a continuous process which we observe in terms of discrete still snapshots much like a movie giving the appearance of continuity which is not the same as the experience of reality. The changing of ages isn't a sudden instantaneous change, but rather a transition that occurs over a period of time spanning some degrees before and after the imaginary sign boundary during which the waning characteristics of the preceding sign are replaced by the waxing characteristics of the incoming sign. Remember that the pole star only moves one degree in 72 years, so just 1-1/2 degrees represent 108 years of the 216 years between the last 1-1/2 degrees and first 1-1/2 degrees of the signs.

Anyway, getting hung up with mathematical theory and what the zodiac really is misses the forest beause of all the trees. If the transition into the age of Pisces was the period say plus or minus 200 years of 0 A.D then the transition period from Pisces to Aquarius could well be the period c. 1960 to 2360, a period that happens to coincide with the instrusion into the total human collective consciousness that the Age of Aquarius has dawned. And if we are well along in the transition into the next great age of 2,160 years it would make sense to begin planning the "event". Maybe it's just organizing the observation of some day in the not too distant future as the "Welcoming Celebration of the Aquarian Age". So I decided to create a Symbolic representation through the Age of Aquarius Planning Committee group which I hope can be a fun, and maybe more than fun forum that if we were actually planning how to begin a new age, what should it look like given the guiding principles of the characteristics associated with this ancient archetypal image known as Aquarius.


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