An Age Old Mistake That Still Haunts Astrologers

©  Copyright Terry MacKinnell 2011, 2016 Under the Berne Convention

The ancient Greek astronomer-astrologer Hipparchus in the late 2nd century BC introduced the Vernal Point (VP) as the calibration technique for the astrological ages based on the VPs position amongst the zodiacal constellations.  The VP is the position of the Sun at the vernal equinox around 21st March each year. Hipparchus commenced the tradition of calibrating the astrological ages based on the location of the VP in one of the 12 zodiacal constellations.  This is a mathematical technique as it is not possible to actually see which constellation the Sun is ever located within as it is always daytime when the Sun is visible.

Sunrise in Baghdad, Iraq 20 March 2016
Sunrise in Baghdad, Iraq 20 March 2016

The above illustration shows the Sun rising at the vernal equinox on the 20th March 2016 in Baghdad, Iraq (in deference to the Sumerian and Mesopotamian astronomer-astrologers who defined the zodiacal constellations thousands of years ago).  The inclusion of the zodiacal constellation boundaries is for reference purposes. The constellation of Aquarius sits well above the horizon and the Sun is located in one arm of the constellation of Pisces.  The constellation boundaries are irrelevant for astrological purposes as they have been defined by modern pagan astronomers.  Furthermore there is no evidence the ancients had constellational borders.  The real estate style subdivision of the sky into constellation is a modern phenomenon.  Based on Hipparchus’ system, the above indicates the world is currently in the Age of Pisces.

The VP has been in the constellation of Pisces for two thousand years or more and remains in the constellation of Pisces.  This is why most astrologers claim we remain in the Age of Pisces.  Most research astrologers accept the zodiacal constellations as symbolic markers only for the 12 sidereal signs of exactly 30 degrees each.  The sidereal zodiac was invented by the ancient Greeks (or Babylonian astrologers) to tidy up the zodiacal constellations in their evolving practice of horoscopic astrology.

 A portrait of Hipparchus of Nicaea from "The School of Athens" by Raphael
A portrait of Hipparchus of Nicaea from “The School of Athens” by Raphael

Unfortunately for astrologers over the following period (equivalent to the length of an age), Hipparchus failed to realize that the old zodiacal constellations had a much older method of calibration. The older method of calibrating the zodiacal constellations is a visual technique. All old astronomical techniques were visual—mathematics took an insignificant role in ancient astronomy. Hipparchus did not use the ages old visual technique as he was obviously transfixed by the new mathematical techniques developed in his era.

I am much indebted to a paper by Rumen Kolev—Some Reflections about Babylonian Astrology.[1] In this paper, Kolev explains the five basic principles applied to ancient astronomy techniques in Babylon. In summary, three of these principles state the visible light directly received from a stellar object was of primary concern, as the ancients believed “God is Light.” In those days, the view of the heavens by the unaided eye was the only method of determining astronomical phenomena. The other two principles are that the two key times for astronomical observations are around Sunrise and Sunset.

In ancient times, the telescope was preceded by the line of the horizon and Neugebauer states that Babylonian astronomers were mainly concerned about astronomical phenomena on the horizon.[2] For example, a major Babylonian text dated 1400–1000 BCE supplies the heliacal rising dates of thirty-four stars and constellations according to their 360-day annual calendar.[3] In ancient Upper Egypt, the heliacal rising of the star Sirius marked the beginning of the year.[4]

The heliacal rising of a star or planet is its first appearance on the eastern horizon in the early morning sky just before the rays of the Sun obliterate the stars from the night sky. The term “heliacal rising” unfortunately has different interpretations.  The definition of the “true heliacal rising” is when a star or planet, etc., rises with the Sun but because the Sun is visible the planet or star cannot be seen.  This is the ‘mathematical’ system employed by Hipparchus as the position of the Sun in a constellation must be calculated.

The alternative to the “true helical rising” is the “visible heliacal rising” when a star or planet, etc., can be seen on the eastern horizon just before the approaching sunlight obliterates the star or planet from view.[5] My use of the term “heliacal rising” refers exclusively to the visible heliacal rising. In most ancient societies, the visible heliacal rising (or setting) of a stellar object was one of the most important calibration techniques applied to a stellar object.  The “true” heliacal rising technique is a ‘modern’ mathematical technique probably invented by Hipparchus.

The ancient Greek author Hesiod, a contemporary of Homer, mentions the heliacal risings of the star Arcturus and asterism, the Pleiades, as if the reader of his times clearly understood what he was talking about.[6] To many ancient people, the heliacal phenomena of stars and constellations were an integral part of their calendar. In practical terms, the heliacal rising of a body occurs about one hour before Sunrise, but this will vary with latitude, season, and the brightness of the bodies involved. Rumen Kolev also states the heliacal rising (or setting) of a stellar object must occur before the Sun rises (or after it sets)[7] which is another way of saying the “visible heliacal rising”.

Gavin White in his book Babylonian Star-Lore proposes the most relevant astronomical feature of ancient times (presumably other than the position of the Sun and Moon) were the stars on the eastern horizon just before dawn.[8] White goes further and claims that the first star maps were actually a calendar in the sky, with the equinoxes and solstices as the reference grid for the calendar.[9] In the earliest times of civilization, mankind referred to the stars in their heliacal mode with a specific focus upon the two annual equinoxes and solstices. Their New Year, commencing at the spring equinox, elevates this point above the autumn equinox and two solstices.

This ancient view of the cosmos is basically in agreement with my approach to the astrological ages based on precession. The modern approach to calibrating the ages using the Vernal Point developed by Hipparchus is incongruous to the original methods of observing the stars and constellations. This incongruity of using the position of the Sun at the vernal equinox as the calibrator for the astrological ages is put into context by Nicholas Campion, who states that in observational astronomy it makes no sense to place the Sun in a constellation or among stars, because whenever the Sun is visible the stars are not.[10] Observational astronomy was the astronomy of the ancients.

Elementary astronomy provides the reason why my rectification of the ages is half a sign in advance of the accepted norm amongst astrologers until now – it is because the commonly accepted ages based on the VP are half an age late! The VP is located at the Sun’s position on the vernal equinox (around 21 March each year). The heliacal zodiacal constellation is viewed approximately one hour before the Sun rises. As students, most of us are taught the Earth rotates on its own axis once per day, and all 360 degrees rise above the horizon in twenty-four hours. Therefore, in two hours, on average, thirty degrees (or one zodiacal sign) will rise up over the horizon.  In one hour, approximately, fifteen degrees of the ecliptic rises—this is equivalent to half a zodiacal sign. This is the source of the discrepancy between the ages as defined by Hipparchus and the ages based on the ancient visible heliacal method. The difference between the ancient techniques of the heliacal rising zodiacal constellation at the VE compared to the modern VP method is approximately fifteen degrees, half a sign/age or about 1,075 years.  In ancient times, the zodiacal constellations were meant to be read via their visible heliacal position when applied to the astrological ages. The error Hipparchus made in 127 BCE when he inadvertently used the VP in place of the visible heliacal method delayed his ages by approximately 1,075 years.

I am not the only researcher who acknowledges the heliacal rising of the zodiacal constellations at the spring equinox as the astronomical framework for the ages. The archeo-astronomer Sepp Rothwangl in Considerations About the Start of the Age of Aquarius[11] claims that, in ancient times, a new constellation rising on the eastern horizon before Sunrise on the morning of the Northern Hemisphere spring equinox was the main criterion for the start of a New Age. Rothwangl also states that such a change from Pisces to Aquarius has already occurred, thus indicating the arrival of the new Age of Aquarius.

Hipparchus suffered from a calibration error when he applied the VP method to precession and astronomers and astrologers have adhered to this erroneous VP calibration technique ever since.  If the ancient heliacal method is applied to the zodiacal signs, a very different time frame is provided compared to the Vernal Point method. For example, in 2016 at the vernal equinox, the Sun (VP) sits in the constellation of Pisces, though the constellation of Pisces cannot be seen. The Vernal Point will remain in the constellation of Pisces for many more centuries. However, if you are awake one hour before dawn, when the stars are still visible on the eastern horizon, the last stars seen rising up from the eastern horizon before the sky turns blue is the constellation of Aquarius.

One hour before sunrise 20 March 2016 in Baghdad, Iraq
One hour before sunrise 20 March 2016 in Baghdad, Iraq

 

The above illustration one hour before dawn on 20th March 2016 in Baghdad shows the constellation of Aquarius sitting just above the horizon with no stars visible in the constellation of Pisces.

Therefore, the constellation of Aquarius is currently the visible heliacal rising constellation. The constellation of Aquarius has been the visible heliacal rising constellation for centuries. The conundrum is that, based on the Vernal Point located in the constellation of Pisces, we are supposedly in the Age of Pisces and will remain so for many centuries while based on the visible heliacal rising of the constellation of Aquarius, we are in the Age of Aquarius and have been in the Age of Aquarius for centuries.  The latter assertion is substantiated by historians who claim the arrival of Modernity occurred about 500 years ago.[13]

It is one thing for an astrologer-astronomer from over 2,000 years ago to make a mistake, but to not correct this mistake at the first opportunity is another massive mistake by astrologers.

The Five Most Popular Posts for Further Investigation

The Age of Aquarius for Dummies

The Aquarian age did not begin in the 1960’s or ’70s

SCORPIO – the Sign of the Times …. Revisited – Part 1

Females, Women and Feminists in the Age of Aquarius

Generational Astrology – Introduction (Part 1)

Illustrations

Star illustrations courtesy of Stellarium software – stellarium.org

A portrait of Hipparchus – Wikipedia, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hipparchus_by_Raphael.jpg

References

[1] Rumen Kolev, “Some Reflections about Babylonian Astrology,” http://cura.free.fr/decem/09kolev.html

[2] The Exact Sciences In Antiquity, p. 98

[3] “MUL.APIN.” Wikipedia. Retrieved 02:15, 16 June 2008, http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=MUL.APIN&oldid=217193345

[4] Ronald A Wells, “Astronomy in Egypt,” Astronomy Before the Telescope, p. 34

[5] Brady’s Book of Fixed Stars, p. 323

[6] Shining in the Ancient Sea, p. 41

[7] Rumen Kolev, “Some Reflections about Babylonian Astrology,” http://cura.free.fr/decem/09kolev.html

[8] Babylonian Star-Lore, pp. 8–9

[9] Babylonian Star-Lore, p. 23

[10] The Dawn of Astrology, p. 81

[11] Sepp Rothwangl, “Considerations About the Start of the Age of Aquarius,” http://cura.free.fr/xxv/21sepp2.html (Retrieved 3 April 2007)

[12] John H Rogers, “Origins of the ancient constellations: I. The Mesopotamian traditions,” Journal of the British Astronomical Association, 108, 1, 1998, p. 9

[13] Modernity. (2016, March 12), Wikipedia, Retrieved 08:27, March 14, 2016, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Modernity&oldid=709662496

 


 

The above is a modified extract from “The Dawning – Shedding New Light on the Astrological Ages

The Dawning by Terry MacKinnell

Join the Macro-Astrology group to keep on track with the evolving conversation on the astrological ages.  I post to many groups and sites but nearly all these posts are also published at the Macro-Astrology FaceBook group like a central depository:

 

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Waiting for Ages

Some years ago I watched a swords and sandal epic movie (produced in Italy with English sub-titles) about an old Grecian legend involving titans, monsters heroes etc.  The titans had just been released from some kind of very long captivity from a previous age.  One titan (in human form) was chatting with a barmaid and said “I have been waiting for ages to meet someone as beautiful as you”.  This innocuous story led me to consider how the astrological ages correspond with developments with the astrological ages.  Allegorically this could be likened to the astrological ages navel gazing.

The ‘modern’ approach to the astrological ages was kicked off by the Greek astronomer-astrologer Hipparchus in the late 2nd century BC when he irrefutably discovered the slow eastward shift of the stars due to the precession of the equinoxes.  This newly perceived perspective from around 127 BC (for the Greeks at least) allowed Hipparchus to conceptualize the astrological ages.  This occurred in the previous Scorpio sub-age (189 – 8 BC) – specifically extremely close to the first sub-age decan cusp around 129 BC, the Cancer sub-age decan cusp.

Jump forward to modern times, and the equivalent to 127 BC is 1853 AD (equivalent in the sense that both 1853 AD and 127 BC exist two years past their respective Cancer sub-age decan cusp).  There is also another way of relating specific periods between different ages.  Each age is approximately 2150 years.  Add 2150 years (an age) to 127 BCE and we arrive at 2024 AD.  At a minimum, we know that the period 1853 to 2012 (leading to 2024) has experienced a revolution in the acceptance, understanding or recognition of the astrological ages in modern times along with a massive resurgence of interest in astrology. 

In the 19th century Blavatsky, who co-founded the Theosophical Society in 1875, popularized the concept of a new age commencing in 1888 and some of her followers specifically addressed the Age of Aquarius.  This marks a new age for the astrological ages rising to a crescendo in the late 1960s when the musical Hair proudly proclaimed in its first song ‘this is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius’.  References to the Age of Aquarius are now so ubiquitous, that on any day, about half a dozen references can be found in the media (especially in the USA), and particularly promoting the urban myth that the Age of Aquarius arrived in the 1960s and 70s.  In following the press and online articles, many commentators suggest that the Age of Aquarius lasted 10 or 20 years as the world seems to have moved away from the Age of Aquarius in recent decades.

Therefore in the two periods associated with highpoints for the astrological ages, both are associated with a Scorpio sub-age and both periods are about one age apart.  The next area of interest is another age before Hipparchus discovered precession.  Using both methods as applied above, 2150 years before 127 BC takes us back to 2277 BC based on an age with an average of 2150 years.  Two years past the Cancer sub-age decan cusp of the ancient Scorpio sub-age (2188 – 2006 BC) places us around the year 2125 BC.  Therefore the period 2277 to 2125 is the target period for an ancient highpoint related to the astrological ages.  For many people this is ridiculous because in academia, precession of the equinoxes was only discovered by Hipparchus around 127 BC.  How could anyone before this time know about astrological ages or precession of the equinoxes?

Though academia rejects ancient knowledge of precession of the equinoxes and the astrological ages before Hipparchus – mountains of circumstantial evidence suggests the contrary.  Most astrologers know that astrology is too subtle and sophisticated for academics to comprehend (they need an apple to fall on their head), so we will put aside their collective limitation and move back to very ancient times and see if ancient astronomers may have made advances in their understanding or knowledge of the astrological ages.  Surprisingly, the period 2277 to 2125 BC hits the nail right on the head.  A major restructuring of the zodiacal constellations occurred in the late third millennium BCE because over the thousands of years since the Mesopotamians had been observing the heavens, the constellations had shifted position due to precession of the equinoxes.[1]  It is believed this restructure of the constellations occurred in what is known as the Akkadian period (2390–2210 BC).  If the astronomers from this ancient time could perceive that the stars had shifted, did it occur to them that the stars would keep shifting into the future?  Did they relate astrological ages to these shifting stars? 

Though we cannot be certain of the knowledge-base of ancient astronomers, we can historically perceive the developments in ancient astronomy.  For thousands of years a cosmic religion had existed where the heavenly bodies were deified.  Sometime, not long before 2000 BCE in Mesopotamia, the astronomers commenced applying astrological concepts to the heavenly bodies.[2]  This very major development in astrology appears around our target period of 2277 to 2125 BC.  Another key development is that the stars and constellation, as defined in those ancient times, became ‘frozen’ until Hipparchus appeared around one age later.  As early as 1915 researchers noticed that the ancient Greeks inherited the Babylonian constellations, but the constellations they used were defined around 2084 BC (in the final florescence of the old Sumerian civilization in Mesopotamia).[3]  Other researchers agree with this approach. 

Basically what we have is three highpoints associated with astrology (and astronomy) in general, including the astrological ages to a certain extent – all associated with a Scorpio sub-age.  Between these highpoints are large periods of time of erratic or reduced activity or understanding but with some highpoints, particularly when any period is associated with Aquarius.  For most of the 1st and 2nd millenniums BC, a lot of important astronomical/astrological knowledge or understanding appears to have been lost in the turbulence of those times, and people much information could only be hand down and possibly only partially understood.

There is a delusionary expectation that as the years unfold, everything improves.  This is not the case.  Shakespeare is still called the greatest poet the world has seen.  Michelangelo’s artwork is revered today.  Any original Impressionist painting is worth a fortune.  Picasso is undoubtedly the greatest surrealist or abstract painter the world has known.  Most of the best classical composers lived a number of centuries ago.  People will be listening to the music of the 1960s and 70s in awe for centuries.  The best novelists the world will appear around 2029 (minus 15 years or plus 60 years), and not to be overtaken for around another 700 years.

The reason for these spikes in accomplishment is that they all relate to peaks in ages and sub-ages.  For example, the power of Pisces at the time of Shakespeare will not be replicated for almost another 26,000 years.  The music of Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, the Beatles and so on is associated with the Pisces-Aquarius age (1433- 3574) with a highpoint for Scorpio in 1970.  As Richard Tarnas points out in his music and astrology workshops, the music of the 1960s and 70s was the combination of the Uranian (Aquarian) electric medium combined with the sexual rock-and-roll beat of Pluto (Scorpio).

Therefore it can be expected that the current highpoint for astrology in general and specifically the astrological ages will not be constant in the coming millennia. It is therefore appropriate that such a major discovery of the true nature of the astrological ages is made during the current period when the astrology of our time resonates with major advances in astrology.  Even ten years ago, near the beginning of my major research into the astrological ages, I was aware of the need to produce a book at a time that was a suitable highpoint for astrology.  The whole Scorpio subage and overflow (1791-1970-2148) is a highpoint for astrology, but there are specific Scorpio hotspots within this multi-century period.  One such hotspot is the current Scorpio micro-age decan and overflow (2005-10-15) with the bell curve highpoint located 2007-12 (basically aligned to the GFC).  Ten years ago I thought this hotspot was located around 2020 and so I thought I had plenty of time to write my book.  This illusion was shattered in 2006 when I eventually fine-tune my rectification of the start of the Aquarian age to 1433 – about 10 years earlier than my previous estimate.  This advanced the current Scorpio hotspot from around 2020 to 2010.  I immediately felt the pressure to produce the book of the astrological ages and I commenced writing it in 2007, with it being published in 2011.

For those readers interested in the astrological ages we live in a magic period.  In hindsight it is easy to see why Hipparchus in the 2nd century BC got his calibration technique for measuring the astrological ages wrong.  This is why for over the last 2,000 years the astrological ages have been a mere toy and plaything for some astrologers, as it gave the hint of correlation but was basically useless as a predictive tool.  One of the big questions I have is: did the astronomer-astrologers of around 2100 BC perceive and understand the astrological ages?  Circumstantial evidence cannot provide a definitive answer but there is a good possibility the answer is yes.  Every time you look at a zodiacal constellation in the sky, you are looking at the forensic evidence left by the ancient astronomer-astrologers over 4,000 years ago.  These zodiacal constellations, in their heliacal rising mode of calibration, are exactly aligned to the astrological ages as defined with the Age of Aquarius arriving in 1433 AD.  Is this an accident or were the zodiacal constellations purposely defined to measure the astrological ages? Now this is a real mystery!  Will we have to wait another age to find out?

For details about my book THE DAWNING see www.macro-astrology.com/purchase.html


[1] Babylonian Star-Lore, p. 256–9

[2] The Great Year, p. 21

[3] Mythology of the Babylonian People, p. 322

Pisces America

I recently had the pleasure of attending the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival in Bali (5 – 9 October 2011).  With an eclectic mix of presenters from Australia, Asia, Europe, Africa and the Americas, this writers festival provided a first account insight into the world today – warts and all.  One recurrent theme introduced by a variety of writers focused upon the destructive political and social input from the USA upon many countries outside of the developed western world.

Before providing the relevant details of the political skulduggery undertaken by the USA since the Second World War (to keep the world free) let me be clear that I am not anti-American, and though I will be dealing with some of these negative issues associated with the USA, I will also be discussing many positive qualities associated with the USA as presented by various writers at the festival. This is actually the essence of this blog post.  There are two distinct sides to the USA, and while many people acknowledge one side or the other, depending upon their personal political views and allegiances, it is necessary to recognise both sides to fully comprehend the Pisces psyche of the USA.

In my recently published book, The Dawning – Shedding New Light on the Astrological Ages, I basically introduce the USA onto the world stage as the modern empire of the Pisces-Aquarius age. In a similar fashion, Ancient Rome was the empire of the Aries-Pisces age, Ancient Egypt the empire of the Taurus-Aries age and Sumer (Mesopotamia) the empire of the Gemini-Taurus age.  Each of these empires introduced specific peaks of achievement associated with the age-pair of the times, with a distinct focus upon the first sign in the age pair.

Mesopotamia of the Gemini-Taurus age introduced (Gemini) writing.  Ancient Egypt of the Taurus-Aries age is known for its massive pyramids, stone temples and monuments carved out of mountains – appropriate for Taurus – the fixed earth sign of solidity.  Ancient Rome of the Aries-Pisces is renowned for its mighty armies that not only created the largest ancient empire based on its military might – it actually pioneered modern military techniques (basically shock and awe).  Aries is the sign ruled by Mars – the god of war.  In the same vein, the USA in the current Pisces-Aquarius age (1433 – 3574) is the champion of Pisces in the modern world – and even on a simplistic level, this can be seen by its cultural capital, Hollywood, which has conquered the world through movies (movies are ruled by Pisces, the sign always associated with fantasy in all its shapes and guises).  Furthermore the USA is the champion of the ethereal corporation – which are fake bodies given the status of real bodies in the legal system, and thus has provided the backbone of the modern capitalistic world.  Most things that are fake are associated with Pisces. All these associations are explored in far greater detail in The Dawning (see:
http://www.macro-astrology.com).

The focus in this blog however is on the bi-polar nature of the USA due to its primary association to Pisces.  The USA is not the Pisces Empire of the modern world, but the Pisces-Aquarius Empire, but Aquarius plays second fiddle to Pisces in the Aquarian age due to the Overflow Effect (see: Is the Aquarian Age Like a Block of Granite?).  Basic zodiacal sign symbology for Pisces displays two fish swimming in opposite direction.  This is reflected in American politics,  foreign policy and society.  At the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival of 2011, the two fish of the USA were on display (without anyone realising the Pisces connection, other than myself).

The author and journalist Tariq Ali is an expatriate Pakistani living in exile in London due to his political views – having a political view in Pakistan is dangerous!  In the two sessions I attended that included Tariq, he repeatedly described how, since the Second World War, the USA has actively undermined the political integrity and the fledgling democracies in the Middle East, in the same way that it did in South America.  Tariq basically stated that the USA would undermine any country that it perceived to be against the foreign policy interests of the USA.  This is a well-documented and widely known fact. Towards the end of the session, Tariq wittingly stated that Australia was the USA’s fixed aircraft carrier in the region.

Andrew Fowler discussed his new book The Most Dangerous Man in the World (about the rise of Julian Assange to international prominence).  One of the reasons Julian is fighting his extradition to Sweden, is that not only is the Swedish government conservative, it was also a stopover point provided by the Swedish government to the Americans sending alleged terrorists to other countries for torture.  The Americans have demonized Assange as a spy with the complicity of the New York Times, and in a show of political corporate (Pisces) support, American companies such as MasterCard, Visa and PayPal pulled the plug on donations being provided to Assange.  Even though the New York Times published some of the information provided by Assange’s Wikileaks, they stated that Julian was a source, not a journalist.  Journalists are protected in the USA due to freedom of speech – but sources do not have this protection.  Even the New York Times was complicit in the demonizing of Assange.

In the session “My Egypt” with Gamal Al Ghitani and Khaled Al-Khamissi, about word on the street in Egypt, it came out that Assange’s Wikileaks provided some important information that helped garner support for the overthrow of the Tunisian regime through people-power.  Wikileaks revealed that American diplomatic sources secretly discussed how they would not support the Tunisian government due to its corruption and despotism.  This fact alone gave moral support to the democratic revolutionary elements in Tunisa – and the rest is history. Tunisia was the first despotic regime to fall, setting in momentum the unrest that spread to Egypt, Bahrain, Syria and other Middle East countries.  So while the USA demonizes Julian Assange, it appears that his altruistic desire to reveal the truth about what our politicians and diplomats are really doing behind the scenes and ultimately on our behalf, has already borne some fruit.  I wonder how the American Founding Fathers in their revolutionary zeal would view Julian Assange?

The final political session “Coups, Crusades and Revolutions” with Horst Geerken (Germany), Oya Baydar (Turkey) and Tariq described a litany of interference by the USA into the internal affairs of many countries resulting in the deaths and persecution of many people – many of whom were just members of a trade union or expressed left-wing political views.  Horst was resident in Indonesia in the early 1960s in the final years of the non-aligned President Sukarno, and witnessed the USA backed military coup against him led by General Suharto.  Once installed in power, the USA gave the names of communists, leftists and sympathisers to be neutralized, and consequently between one and three million Indonesians were murdered, with the numbers killed in Bali particularly high. This is all documented in Horst Geerken’s book A Gecko for Luck.

The reason why the USA orchestrated coups around the world and militarily intervened wherever necessary (Korea, Viet Nam, Iraq, Afghanistan etc.) has evolved since the post-World War Two period, but the initial purpose was to contain and stop the spread of communism. There is no doubt that the growth and development of communism in the first part of the 20th century was an evil and duplicitous enterprise carried out by ruthless and unscrupulous supporters.  Its evil was such that communism was probably equivalent to one of the horses of the apocalypse.  The duping of much of the western intellectual and leftist political supporters morally supporting the evil of Stalinist-style communism was perceived by the USA as the enemy within – and in retrospect this view was basically correct, even though the enemy within were not aware of their own ignorance.  It should be remembered that the key sign in the current Pisces-Aquarius age is Pisces – the sign of gullibility and deception.  Furthermore the first part of the 20th century was a Pisces hot spot – possibly the last Pisces hotspot of such magnitude for almost another 26,000 years.  Even many western intellectuals and academics were hypnotized (Pisces) by the communists.

The post-war American political agenda had communism firmly in its gun sights, and it did not waver in facing the enemy wherever it tried to break out from its support base in the USSR and China.  Unfortunately America utilised the Pisces technique of demonization and adopted any means, fair or foul, to defeat its enemy – basically the same technique of the communists.  From the militaristic American perspective, the appearance of communism or its supporters anywhere in the world was cause for great concern and it did everything it could to eradicate its enemy and supporters.  If a fledging democratic government had to be overthrown by a military coup – so be it! If millions of people had to be killed, even if they were only of a left-wing political persuasion – off with their heads. America took the view that the end justifies the means.  This may seem incongruous with a democratic nation, but the history of democracy shows that democracy to date has always been limited.  For example in Athens in Ancient Greece, only the male landholder could vote, and they also owned slaves.  In the modern example, while the USA is internally based on democratic institutions, its role, and foreign policy in the international arena has always been based on self-interest (no different than most other powers in the world). Pisces involvement is in the fact ‘the end justifies the means’ – any number of deceitful and sordid calamities could be bestowed on any country deemed an enemy or opponent.

Since the collapse of monolithic communism, the USA was bereft of an enemy.  9/11 solved that problem, and the USA has engaged in a new reign of hostilities against Al-Qaeda or its supporters and allies in the Middle East, or using its War Against Terror to invade or undermine any country it so pleases – in much  the same way it has widely done since the Second World War.  I am sure that none of the key players in the inner American political establishment feels anything other than justifiable righteousness in containing its perceived enemies – be they the former communists or the new breed of terrorist networks.

Most people in the world believe that their personal actions and beliefs are correct – this underlies the Pisces illusion of our modern age.  The unconscious reasoning goes something like this – if I am correct, then anyone who disagrees with me incorrect.  If these incorrect or deluded adversaries cause a problem, or I perceive they may cause a problem, I can further enhance their incorrectness by demonizing them in any way I like.’  This was done to the extreme in Nazi Germany, Stalinist USSR and Mao’s China.  It has been done to homosexuals, some minor religious groups, major religions against other major religions, people who use drugs – and in some countries, people who drink alcohol and most recently to illegal immigrants.  Any use of demonization is evidence of Pisces (i.e. delusion and deception).

The USA, as the Pisces-Aquarius Empire of the modern world, has mythologised its minor Aquarian revolutionary nature that prompted it to become an early democracy in a world basically ruled by monarchical elites.  There is no doubt that the sentiments expressed by America’s Founding Fathers will echo through the world for millennia to come.  Despite this strong Aquarian element in the American psyche, the Pisces element is the senior partner.  One way this Pisces element manifests is that, by and large, American’s believe their own propaganda.  They are proud of their leading role in the world and particularly their democratic traditions – but they let the mirage of their self-assessment over-rule reality.  The reality is that countries may be relatively democratic within their borders, but they behave outside of their own border just like countries have always done since countries were first invented – they act in their own self-interest and, if powerful, they do all they can to make other countries obey their will.

In total contrast to Americas’ international relations, one of the final sessions of the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival named “Traversing Cultural Divides” highlighted three different people who have fled to or immigrated to the USA, and now call it home, plus one Afro-American.  Basically Arthur Flowers (USA), Chris Abani (Nigeria), Edel Rodriguez (Cuba) and Shirley Lim (ethnic Chinese Malaysian) waxed lyrical about the benefits of living in the USA, and the many opportunities this gave them.  They believe that anyone who sets their mind to it can live the life they deserve in the USA and achieve fulfilment in their lives.  Such success is not born of race, social status or religion but their own effort in an egalitarian society.

For example Shirley Lim’s family has lived some generation in Malaysia, but Malaysia will not treat them as a full citizen due to their ethnic Chinese background. Edel Rodriguez grew up under Castro in Cuba until his family fled to Florida, USA. Rodriguez acknowledges his childhood memories and he would like to be buried in Cuba when he dies, but in the meantime he is a successful graphic artist in the USA. Chris Abani relates to one incident in the USA, his adopted home, where he had to stay in a strange city one night, in a hotel with no friends to call upon.  The helpful and friendly staff informed him that the tree he could see from his hotel window was famous for lynching Negroes in the not too distant past.  As a black African himself, this did little to make him feel at home. Nevertheless, all the panellists were firm in their conviction that no country in the world gave the same degree of freedom and opportunity as the USA.

The USA has pioneered more than democracy, it has been at the forefront of technological evolution for almost a century, and has recently extended itself into cyber world. Bill Gates and Steve Jobs are two leading lights in the new technological world.  In a recent article in The Global Edition of the New York Times[1] it was revealed that sentiment was so high following the death of Steve Jobs, that following the release of the new iPhone 4S, many customers stated that the “4S” meant “for Steve”.  The USA has provided leadership in the cyber world as evidence by the inroads that various American companies have achieved – from IBM, Microsoft to Facebook, Google, Wikipedia and so on.  These innovative developments have been lapped up by a hungry and mainly appreciative world.

In should be noted that Steve Jobs was proud of his (Pisces) drug use – he was a product of the 1960s and 70s and he was an unabashed proponent of this aspect of his life.  The USA led the world, yet again, in those revolutionary and liberating times of the 60s and 70s with marijuana and LSD high on the list.  As one online commentator stated – if Steve had been caught, he would have been put in a (Pisces) cage.  This yet again displays the two fish Pisces paradox that is the USA. On the one hand, the USA led the new drug fuelled world, but simultaneously enacted one of the most draconian laws against drug use in the western world. Currently the American war on drugs is dissembling Mexico and causing untold hardship around the world in its stance against an evolutionary social development that American conservative elements do not like.

Where else in the First World does any other country other than the USA has such a large block of citizens who refute Darwin’s Theory of Evolution in favour of creationism?  This same fundamentalist Christian block maintains an arch-conservative political influence that beggars description and has no known parallel in any other First World country.  The American conservative bloc is another manifestation of the two fish associated with Pisces.

America presents itself as an Aquarian freedom loving democracy – but this is nothing more than ‘white man speaks with forked tongue’.  Americans are not consciously malicious, like everyone else they believe they are doing the right thing in the right way, but even their approach to Julian Assange and Wikileaks indicates a chink in their Pisces armour. They prefer that the delusion of their democratic mystique is maintained rather than be scrutinized and have reality appear.  Assange was merely putting on public display the reality of American foreign policy.  What the American government was telling its citizen’s as its justification for war was in stark contrast to the facts that their own intelligence service provided.  Reality has no association with Pisces other than Pisces is the sign of ‘lack of reality’.  Pisces is associated with public relations and spin – America does everything it can to maintain the mirage of its own spin. Pisces is an ill-defined archetype which is an inherent part of its nature.  It is more like a mirage or fog than a solid object.

Finally, there is no suggestion that the stance and approach that the USA adopts in its foreign policy is in any way inferior or worse than most other nations, past or present – it is just that America is the most influential nation in the world, and so its actions are noticed the most – and criticised the most. The UK was equally malicious in the age of the British Empire as were most European countries – and most countries in the world given the chance.

There is an urban myth developing that the USA is being overtaken by China.  One writer put this in perspective – I think it was Tariq Ali from Pakistan.  Basically he said that if you take the next 10 leading countries in size, after the USA, add all their respective defence budgets together and then double this figure – it still does not equate to the USA’s defence spending.  Though this may be an exaggeration, the military power of the USA is not about to be usurped.  One columnist recently referred to the rise and fall of empires, and stated that the USA had at least two decades left as the world’s superpower. This is where the astrological ages provide greater clarity.  The USA, as empire of the Pisces-Aquarius age, will be at its exalted position for many centuries, if not for another 1,500 years or so – but with some significant turmoil and changes coming in due course.  The first major unsettling development due for the USA will not occur before the middle of next century.

The USA is an enigma within an enigma – it is Hollywood on the grand scale in every sense. It is a mixture of fact and fantasy, where fantasy is presented as fact, and facts are often presented as fantasy. It promotes the glamor of democracy and the deceit of an international bully.  For me this was encapsulated by President Bush immediately after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.  Bush stated to the effect that “.. he would make the world safe for Americans”. What about everyone else in the word – don’t they also deserve peace?  This is Athenian democracy – it is for the elite only.

In a session “Happiness in Human Nature” Rodaan al Galidi, a long term refugee in Jordan from Iraq, and currently resident of Holland since 1998 reflected upon a CNN news report of the war in Iraq.  “800 Iraqi’s were killed today and an American soldier was shot in the leg”.  CNN then went on and described the convalescence required, input from his family members and other details from the soldier’s wound.  The USA promotes an elitist democracy but hides this reality.  This is Pisces pure and simple. Nevertheless, the USA is the empire of the Pisces-Aquarian age, and the real Aquarian age empire will not appear for at least another 1,500 years. The USA will be perceived as a stepping stone along the way towards real democracy in the same way that ancient Athens is considered the starting point of the western democratic tradition.

As a major consolation for idealists and rationalists, if the Stalinist communist model had been successful and the world had succumbed to their brain-numbing political model of terror, subjugation and genocide, the USA would appear as a saint – but only in comparison.  Now we know that the USA is not a saint but we are left with the Pisces choice – is the glass half full or half empty? Being an optimistic Sagittarian, I take the USA glass to be half full. Furthermore there are exciting times ahead for the USA and the world (see: A Celebration 7,000 Years in the Making).

In relation to Ancient Rome, the USA position today is equivalent to the year 145 BC for Rome.  Rome did not attain its maximum territorial size until around 250 years after 145 BC. 145 BC was towards the end of the period known as Supremacy of the New Nobility (287–133 BC) where there was a kind of balance of power of the aristocratic senate and the plebeian assembly. However this was the most militarily active era of the Roman Republic and it left many Roman citizens bankrupt and dependent upon the state due to the deteriorating economic circumstances.[2] Following 133 BC, Ancient Rome teetered between normalcy and crisis, and various reforms were attempted. The world is not static, and this also applies to the USA.

So in conclusion, when many friends and acquaintances throw their hands up in collective horror at the shenanigans of the USA in world affairs since the Second World War, I remind them that for every evil deed done and every corrupt or deceitful action take, that on the other side of the coin, America attains some major development, goal or produces something uplifting for humanity. The IT revolution is being led by the USA, and the ubiquitous cell phone has been shown to play an important part in recent revolutions – as is the case with social network websites. The two fish will always be stuck to the USA, and unfortunately they swim in opposite directions.  This Pisces paradox lies at the core of the American psyche. To accept only one side is to be part of the delusion. Most people choose one fish or the other as if these individual fish adequately describes the USA.  Unless cognizance is given to both fish, that seem intrinsically opposed to each other, than no real understanding of the age empire of our time can be made.


[1] Sat-Sun Oct 15-16 2011 Pg 15

[2] “Roman
Republic.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, 19 Oct.
2011. Web. 20 Oct. 2011.

Now available online and at major book stores.

For a complete background to the above blog, see THE DAWNING, published in 2011

How will we be judged?

….. or to be more precise, how will our contemporary modern world be judged in one thousand years time?

I was inspired to write this blog after partially watching an interesting TV documentary Life After People.[1] This documentary explores the fictional notion that somehow all of humanity suddenly disappears, leaving the world intact as it is today but minus human beings.  Without humans, everything begins to decay.  Termites begin chewing through the wooden structures, iron rusts and vegetation takes over. Even concrete ‘dissolves’ as modern concrete is not as sturdy as the ancient concrete employed by the ancient Romans (and modern concrete produces far more pollution than Roman concrete).  In about 1,000 year’s time, there is virtually nothing left – except for ancient monoliths such as the Egyptian pyramids.

This documentary contrasted ancient monuments and modern construction techniques.  Modern construction materials are not orientated for longevity. Without constant rebuilding or intense maintenance, most of our constructed modern world will quickly deteriorate.  In stark contrast, the pyramids have lasted over 4,000 years, and many of ancient Rome’s impressive building remain available for tourists to visit. These remnant Egyptian monuments are likely to last for many more thousands of years.

The contrast between ancient Egypt and the modern world has an underlying astrological connection.  Ancient Rome was the empire of the Taurus age.[2]  The modern world currently is the product of the Scorpio sub-age and overflow[3] (of the Aquarian age). Taurus and Scorpio are opposite signs!  Therefore what is strong in a Taurean period is weak in a Scorpio period (and vice versa).  When we think of ancient Egypt we think of grand pyramids, the Sphinx and massive rock facades on valley walls – plus the aroma of incense, essential oils and freshly baked bread ….. and other sensual delights.  Ancient Egypt was Taurus made manifest.  There will be no other time in the world where Taurus will be as strong, as when ancient Egypt thrived, for round about another 19,000 years.  So despite the modern technological revolution, it is unlikely any society over the next 19,000 will produce a society that leaves so many archaeological epitaphs for many thousands of years compared to ancient Egypt.  Egypt has set the benchmark for a long time!

We automatically conclude that our modern world is superior to what came before.  However the astrology of the ages indicates otherwise.  For example, why hasn’t the contemporary modern world with vastly greater population produced a better poet than Shakespeare?  Why aren’t modern classical composers superior in quality and quantity compared to the classical musicians from a couple of centuries ago?  The answer is very simple.  At various times over the course of the Great Year (some 26,000 years long), there are twelve astrological ages, and these ages indicate a peak of archetypal energy associated with the zodiacal sign of the astrological age.  For example the Aries age and overflow (2916 BC – 1433 AD) indicates a peak time for war and violence.  Despite the fact nothing in the past is of the magnitude of the two world wars of the 20th century,[4] the person who conquered more of the Eurasian land mass than anyone prior or later is Genghis Khan (c.1162–1227 AD).  This occurred under the influence of Aries and is unlikely to be repeated until around another 23,000 years when the world enters the next Aries age.  The sub-ages of ages also demonstrate this same trait. 

The modern world is a passing experience – and it does not mean that the modern world is superior to all of what came before.  From the perspective of the Scorpio age and overflow (1791 – 2148 AD) within the Aquarian age, that has produced much of what we recognize as the contemporary modern world, certain developments that are archetypally associated with Scorpio will set benchmarks that should withstand the next 2,000 years.[5]  What are these Scorpio benchmarks?  These include the internet, genetic engineering and all its spin-offs including GM foods, the sexual revolution, abortion, nuclear power and weapons, national and personal debt, loans, credit cards, tyrants (Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot etc), pollution, recycling, revolutions, underground criminal networks (e.g. the Mafia, Triad etc) and unseen forces such as insecurity and spiritual regeneration  – to name a few. The appearance of these Scorpio archetypes will withstand the winds of change for quiet some time. 

It is possible to predict the next peak of human activity based on the slow movement of the ages.  Of the twelve sub-ages (approx 179 years each) that exist within each astrological age, sub-ages can be broken down into three sub-age decans (of approximately 60 years each).  The Gemini sub-age decan and overflow (1970 – 2074 with its peak period 2029 – 2074) will witness the greatest manifestation of Gemini since 1073 AD (around 1,000 years ago).  What can we expect from Gemini – especially in the period around 2029 to 2074?  Firstly the continuation of the communications revolution due to cell phones (mobile phones), emails and the internet. Other areas strongly associated with Gemini include: the massive growth of education around the world[6] – especially pre-university education; the automobile revolution utilizing clean energy; a new futuristic road network; environmentally sustainable transportation; a revitalization of cities; and the minimalization of language due to texting; plus the greatest novelist(s) of the last 1,000 years. Amazon’s Kindle and Apples iPad are ongoing example of new direction in (Gemini) literature. On the negative side the world may be prone to major wind storms, deteriorating air quality and massive increase in lung diseases due to pollution.  Gemini currently remains in its formative period (1970 – 2029), and all the Gemini archetypes referred to will be at their most powerful in the period 2029 – 2074.

Though we can expect amazing novelists to spring out of the peak of the current Gemini influence around 2029, the influence of the larger and current Scorpio sub-age is much greater.  How will people in the future judge our modern world?  On the negative side they will see the modern period as the greatest example of rapine of the Earth where much of the oil and gas laid down over many millions of years and many other limited natural resources are extracted from the ground and used injudiciously with scant regard for future generations.  We are behaving like pigs at the trough.  We will be earmarked as that strange period when atomic energy and bombs were developed and utilized for good and bad – provided we have not blown the world to smithereens or totally polluted it with nuclear waste so that it is inhospitable to humanity.

On the plus side, we will be seen as that time in history when the world revolted, and dismissed its hereditary kings, monarchs and aristocracy.  The internet will be seen as a gift.  The Sexual Revolution will also be noticeable in one thousand years time when humanity commenced to be liberated from archaic sexual roles and gender inequality. We will be remembered for our spiritual and religious reinvigoration as displayed by the arrival of born again Christians, the growth of fundamentalism in Christianity and Islam plus the increased spiritualism associated with new sects and groups that have proliferated since the 1970s and the natural spirituality of the New Age movement.

Though it has not occurred yet, we will probably be well remembered for the grassroots revolution against rampant and ecologically unsustainable consumerism (this grass roots revolution is unlikely to see its culmination prior to the middle of the next century).  We will be seen as that strange time before the coming ecological golden age (2148 – 2863).[7]  Our modern world is actually the gear-change time where the 10,000 years momentum of unplanned and ad hoc development of the world collides with its ecological consequences.  This is part two of a mighty revolution that is underway.  Part one was the revolution that dethroned the kings – part two is the environmental revolution that we are only seeing the beginning.

Unfortunately we will most likely be remembered badly – because compared to what is to follow, we don’t look good.  The mini-golden age due around the middle of next century and lasting for around seven centuries indicates a world of balance, equality, ecological awareness and most likely a much smaller world population compared to today’s world.  Scorpio is the sign of pruning – how much of the world’s population will be pruned over the next 150 years or so?  From the current figure of 7 billion people, at least half may be pruned.  This is already occurring.  Most first world nations now have a negative population growth, with many second tier nations also falling in line.  Research indicates that the more educated and economically prosperous a region – the lower the birth rate.

The astrology of the ages supports the realization by many that the world is on a collision course with environmental degradation due to pollution.  How far will we go before something decisive and effective is done about the deplorable ecological situation?  The influence of the Scorpio sub-age strongly insinuates that the world will go past the point of no-return before anything effective is done – with some severe long-term consequences for this lack of timely and direct counter measures. Despite the appearance of a possible golden age next century associated with the Libra decan of the Aquarian age, Libra produces indecisiveness – as no zodiacal sign has only positive qualities associated with it.  So while the steady increase in Libra that has been occurring in the world has produced greater environmental awareness by a significant amount of the population, the amount of indecisiveness and the degree of luxury people want to experience (and damn the consequences) is also on the increase.  The perceived failure of the Copenhagen Accord in late 2009 on climate change to really tackle the issue head-on is an example of this indecisiveness.

We must put the present parlous circumstance of the world in context.  What period since the arrival of civilization has been viewed as a golden age?  The earliest and only recorded possible contender for a golden age is in the Gemini age many thousands of years ago in Mesopotamia (present day Iraq) when farmers first settled down into villages but no form of government existed.  It appears that political and social decisions were made through consultation and the family elders.  This golden age occurred at the cusp of hunter-gathers and the new farmers before all the developed attributes of civilization had evolved (i.e. laws, regulations, leaders, armies, police, religions etc).  Civilization brings great benefits and great problems.  Are the benefits greater than the problems?  On average perhaps not, but the next 150 years may be the exception to the rule where problems of civilization are far greater than the benefits.

I fear that in one thousand years time we will be judged badly but with two qualifications.  Firstly I am assuming that civilized society exists in 1,000 years time – which cannot be assumed.  Secondly I am assuming that people in 1,000 years time will be judgmental – like they are today, and seem to have been for many thousands of years.  Perhaps people in a thousand years will be more evolved and will follow the maxim “judge not and you will not be judged”?


[1] see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_After_People and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wBtHICMmDJk

[2] Specifically the Taurus age overflow (2916 – 732 BC)

[3] the Scorpio sub-age and overflow (1791 – 2148) – the third sub-age of the Age of Aquarius (see Is the Aquarian Age Like a Block of Granite?). Basically each astrological age has 12 sub-ages.  The most influential sign currently in the Aquarian age is Scorpio.

[4] To be statistically correct, the many millions of deaths associated with the two world wars of the 20th century need to be put in context of the world population at the time.

[5] In around 2,000 years time in the next age, the Capricorn age, there will also be a Scorpio sub-age.  The current Scorpio sub-age is the most powerful example of Scorpio until that time and therefore provides us with a 2,000 years Scorpio benchmark.

[6] India has just announced (in 2010) a massive plan to educate its vast millions of uneducated children over the coming decades.

[7] The ecological golden age is associated with the Libran age-decan of the Aquarian age.  Each age has three age-decans.