I’ve recently seen an influx of social media blog posts and memes within the New Age community heralding the Age of Aquarius has begun.
I’m not here to burst anyone’s bubble, but being a responsible astrologer, I’d like to do my part and set the record straight, along with some astronomy and supporting calculations.
The Zodiacal Ages (what we know as the Age of Pisces, Aquarius, etc.) are calculated from an astronomical shift stemming with the procession of the Vernal equinoxes (the time of year on March 21st when day and nights are equal). In simpler terms, we look up at the sky at note the sidereal position of the Sun as it crosses the Vernal Equinox (on March 21st on the Gregorian Calendar), this tells us what age we’re currently in. Right now, it’s still Pisces, and will continue to be in Pisces for another 426 years (approx).
There’s a bunch of astronomical stuff to untangle here, but for general purposes, let’s consider that:
The sky itself is measured as a perfect 360 degree circle.
For general astrological purposes, we divide said sky into 12 equal portions, which are used as demarcation points for the Zodiacal signs (Aries, Taurus, Gemini, etc. all the way to Pisces). There are different ways to slice this up, but let’s consider 360 divided by 12 gives us equal potions of the sky that are 30 degrees each (this is called whole house system).
Due to movement of the procession of the equinoxes (the Earth’s gyroscopic motion), the various ages are moving in a backwards motion through the zodiac. The rate of movement is approximately -1 degree every 72 years.
There is a lot of debate as to the demarcation where the first zodiac line (starting with Aries) is truly sliced in the sky and all the other signs are measured there from. For all intents and purposes, in the current Vedic world, we generally use the star Spica as the demarcation point for Libra. 180 degrees from Spica is the exact demarcation point where Aries starts. (* see footnotes below for more info)
According to most astronomers/astrologers, the point where the Vernal equinox shifted from Aries to Pisces (beginning the age of Pisces) was in the year 286 CE.
The calculation for the true Age of Aquarius thus is 286 CE + (72 degrees x 30 degrees of Pisces = 2160 years).
So, we should enter the age of Aquarius sometime around 2446 CE, and we are still 426 years away from that happening.
If you are an energy-sensitive person or the least bit empathic, you can definitely sense that with the current transits in the sky, there’s a lot of stuff going on right now with Planet Earth and all of its inhabitants. If people don’t understand the astronomy, it’s only natural to believe that there are greater forces influencing change right now, and quite frankly, you'd be right in thinking so. Quite honestly, I haven’t seen such any transits like this, ever, and several of my peers have also commented similarly. That said, to ascribe these forces to a specific Zodiacal age is, quite unfortunately, fallacious in my view.
That said, I now submit to you, that there is a lot of Capricornian Energy in the sky right now with Jupiter, Saturn, Sun and Mercury (Venus is also on its way with the Moon, culminating in a huge Capricornian Stellium of 6 planets conjoined on Feb 10-11th). In addition to this, there is a strong influence of natural malefic planets, and weakened influence of benefic planets. All of these are heavily pressuring us to change and grow through the transformative experiences of our present time.
And when the age of Aquarius dawns on us, we will then be subject to whatever planetary influences are happening at that point in time, 400 years from now. As I've explained in a recent blog post, I do believe that we are seeing a revolutionary period stemming from the Saturn-Jupiter conjunction. How we react and grow through this is entirely up to us.
The Great Seer and Father of Vedic Astrology, Maharishi Parashara, has assured his student Maitreya in his writings that the planets themselves are living incarnations of Janardana (an embodiment of Vishnu the sustainer - Jana means birth, and Dana means to give) and are meant to bestow upon us the living fruits of our karma. The goal of the planets is to balance and promote virtue, while destroying demonic forces. All we need to do is to follow their movements and do our part to sustain virtue, in whatever life context we are meant to.
* Sidenote: There is a drift between the two different calculations for what constitutes a year (tropical year versus sidereal year), which works out to 20 minutes of time. This remainder (called Ayanamsha) is accounted for in the sidereal world, and subtracted from the Tropical zodiac to show the actual position of heavenly bodies against the stars. There were a bunch of astronomers and astrologers in India who convened and agreed on the Lahiri Ayanamsha (using the star Spica) which is now prevalently used today. Although…if truth be told…the debate still creeps up every now and again to this day, as to which is calculation is the most reliable. I experiment with other Ayanamshas but favor Lahiri since it’s what I’ve been taught and tends to give accurate results in predictions.
Further sidenote: there are some neo-Vedic astrologers who have emerged recently to proclaim that tropical astronomy should only be considered for purposes natal Vedic astrology. I have concluded through my own experience that Sidereal astrology favors reliable and consistent results. I’m not interested in debating this point, I’m just stating my personal assumptions are in favor with my teachers, and have produced excellent results in my own readings and predictions.