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Astrology Articles
Article Title: Religion Through the Astrological Ages
Date Published:
- by David  Perkins
How religions "follow" each sign of the Zodiac
The concept of an 'astrological age' is the result of the Moon causing the earth to "wobble" on its axis (the affects you can observe in real life by watching a toy top that has a constant wobble while it is spinning). This motion causes the positions of the stars to rotate as seen from the earth, and in today's diagram you can see how this wobble affects what we use the north star.

Today the earth's north celestial pole points towards Polaris (the present day north star), however in 500 BC it was pointing towards Kochab (which the ancient Greeks used as their north star). In 12,000 years Vega will be our north star and eventually the circle will come to Polaris again. It takes the earth 25,800 years to go through one of these cycles, which is called the precessional year, or the great year.

This movement also causes a BACKWARD rotation of the zodiac signs we use in sidereal astrology, so that approximately every 2,100 years, each starsign takes turn being the constellation the Sun is in front of on the first day of spring. Technically, whatever zodiac sign is behind the Sun on the first day of spring is what 'age' we are in. Over the last 2,000 years we were in the age of Pisces since the Sun is in front of the constellation Pisces on the first day of spring. It is now slowly changing, and soon (and for the NEXT 2,000 or so years) the constellation behind the Sun on the first day of spring will be Aquarius.

Why do all the newspapers, most astrologers, and books have the first day of spring, March 21, as being "Aries"? This is because they use what is called a "Tropical zodiac", a system that sets up the signs based on the seasons, and plots the planet positions in relation to the earth. The type of astrology that uses the actual position of the planets in relation to the stars is called "Sidereal astrology". The Sidereal system, then, is used to determine what "age" we are in, since the Tropical zodiac doesn't measure, or work with, any of the heavenly bodies OUTSIDE our own solar system.

When there is a clear night sky you can go out and see the reason why it is difficult to determine when the Aquarian age, or when ANY "age" really begins. This is because there is no clear boundaries as to where one constellation ends and another begins (plus in some cases they even overlap!). Officially the age of Aquarius will begin when the sign of Aquarius is the zodiac sign behind the Sun on the first day of spring.

Usually when measuring any great time cycles such as ages, or even the rise and fall of civilizations (such as ancient Egypt or Rome) it is usually difficult to give one specific date as to when they begin and end. There are many valid opinions based on astrological and other occurrences as to when the Aquarian age starts, from as early as 1984, now, to 2001, 2012, 2157, and even as late as 2374.

Astrological Ages - A Brief History

During the Age of Leo, around 10,000 BC, indications suggest this period was the height of what is known as Sun worship (which relates to Leo since the Sun rules Leo). While this practice eventually faded in many parts of the world, it did remain prominent in several parts of the world, particularly Latin America, with what later developed as the Mayan, Inca, and Aztec civilizations.

The Age of Cancer, around 8,000 BC, is the time speculated as to the occurrence of the great floods that are described in nearly every major culture (including the Bible). This is also the period when many cultures had religious practices that involved worship of the Moon - the heavenly body that rules Cancer. In the case of China, the Moon was the primary element used to describe spiritual occurrence and also used to time their metaphysical practice. Even today the Moon is more significant than the Sun in Chinese astrological interpretations, and plays the primary role in their calendar, (the Chinese New Year is calculated on the movement of the Moon, not the Sun).

Around 6,000 BC begins the Age of Gemini - which also coincides with the period when humans began experimenting with what would become writing, which is an attribute associated with Gemini. This also marks the time when many cultures worshipped twin gods, either in spirits or actual human brothers/sisters. In one example, an ancient religion of this period from the Mesopotamia describes the legend of Tiamat, a giant monster that once covered everything in the universe. The god Murduk sliced Tiamat in two with his sword, which half became heaven and the other half lived to become the earth (signifying that heaven and earth were 'twins' of the same being).

The Age of Taurus

(approximately 4220 BC. - 2160 BC.)

Taurus is a fixed earth sign, focusing on the material, and these descriptions closely associate with the fundamental changes of this period that brought on an important evolution in the human experience. It is during this age that several groups of peoples began to settle (fixed), and grow from the cultivation of the land (earth) through extensive agriculture. Instead of tribal groups wandering around searching for food, the MATERIAL aspect of food was conquered, so it could be in supply all year long.

This development lead to another aspect of Taurus characteristics: the love of beauty from the Venus influence and therefore the massive production of art. Since these early cultures did not spend all their time collecting food, there was then time to develop art and other pursuits which then enriched their society. We can say that in the age of Taurus was the first true material establishment of civilization.

The best known civilization of this period is of course ancient Egypt, and later the ancient Greek historian Herodotus once wrote of the Egyptians and their earth:

"They gather in the fruits of the earth with less labor than any other people, for they have not the toil of breaking up the furrow with the plow. When the river comes of its own accord and irrigates their fields, and having irrigated them, subsides. Each man sows his own land, waits for harvest time, and then gathers it in."

The Histories
, chapter 2

This passage is an interesting observation, since it points out that perhaps one reason why the Egyptians were so successful in their agriculture was simply because it was so easy. If so, this would suggest another attribute often associated with Taurus, the desire for ease (which is sometimes seen as laziness), was important for the development agriculture.

The Bull in Religion

During the age of Taurus, bulls and their worship were prevalent in many cultures, among them the Bull of Minos, and the Minotaur of the Cretan Labyrinth. At certain times of the year, young boys and girls were ceremoniously sacrificed to the Bull god through sport. During these religious festivals, young people jumped through the horns of the bull, and sometimes even danced on top of them. It is actually from this practice that modern sport of bull fighting evolved.

The bull was a major figure in the religion of the Chaldeans, and in many of their temples one can still see the winged bulls that were carved and painted on the walls. In the Middle east, many of the nomadic tribes worshipped the "golden calf" as described in the old testament It was also during this time that the Hindus had legend of Krishna - the "Christ" of his era - who was said to have been a herder of cows. It is also during the age to Taurus that the holiness of cows - and of course bulls - in the Hindu faith was formed, which still exists even today.

In the Egyptian religion a living bull was a representative of the god Apis, who resided over the underworld (the domain of Scorpio which is the polar opposite of Taurus). In the same way monks in Tibet have their teacher reincarnated through various lives, the Egyptian priests believed that every so often Apis would come to them occasionally as a bull. This was said to have occurred when the bull had the markings of the other three fixed signs of the zodiac: a white triangle on his forehead (Aquarius), the mark of the eagle on his back (Scorpio), and in his mouth, a beetle (the scarab), a creature who was associated with Leo during this time.

The pharaoh of Egypt had two elements which symbolized his power, and the one representing religion was closely associated to the influence of Taurus. On his head was the crown which represented his unifying political leadership, (which had been divided earlier into an Upper and Lower Egypt - a leftover from the duality of the previous Age of Gemini). In his hand he held the Ankh - the symbol of life - which represented his leadership in religious affairs. The Ankh closely resembles the symbol for Venus (the planet that rules Taurus), for it is a circle on top of a cross.

Later we will see that even in later ages, the zodiac symbol of the age also came to represent the religion of the period: with the sacrificial lamb in the age of Aries, and the symbol for the fish (Christianity) in the age of Pisces.

The Age of Aries

(approximately 2160 BC to 1 AD)

Astrologically, the coming of the age of Aries was to mark the change of humanity away from the vibrations of artistic Venus (the planet that rules Taurus) to those of the more aggressive Mars (the planet that rules Aries). This can be seen by the number of economies and civilizations during this period that were based on war and conquest instead of the more peaceful societies based on soil cultivation.

It was during this age that the Persians, Greeks, and Romans developed tremendous power and introduced humanity to an era of aggressiveness and violence through major wars never before seen in humanity. Even Egypt made the transition from a relatively peaceful culture to an expansionist nation, accumulating much of its wealth during this period from the enslavement of conquered and subjugated peoples (a large number being of the developing Jewish culture, who we will see are closely associated with the ram in many ways...)

The initiation of males into the collective Soul of the Jews through circumcision is also related to Aries, for the sexual organs of a male are under the influence of Mars. It was also during this age that Moses forbade the worship of the golden calf (developed from the previous age of Taurus) and a new practice of religious ceremony developed which is closely associated with the ram:

"Ye shall take a lamb...without blemish, a male of the first year... Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire: his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof".

Exodus 12:5, 9

In Egypt the cult of the Bull, Apis, diminished during this era and the ram headed Amon- Re grew in popularity, which spread to other parts of the world. Mithra, the Sun god of Persia who used to be called "The Sacred Bull" became the "Slayer of the Bull" during this period (and acquired a helmet with ram's horns). Ashur, the ancient Sun god of the Assyrians who was previously known as "The Great Bull" was transformed during the Aries age into a Greek Mars-like god of war (also with a helmet that featured the horns of a ram!)

The name Aries comes from Greek, Ares, which in Latin became Mars. The sign of the Ram during this period signified the desire to express oneself as an individual, and to dominate one's environment. The Greek culture that developed reflects very much this principle, for it was based on the ability of a person to represent himself individually: in spirit, law, and character. This idea also evolved into their societies, for every Greek city- state wished to be recognized as a separate individual power (which resulted in their downfall).

A favorite god of the Greeks was Pallas Athene, who was dressed in the armor of a soldier, with ram's horns on her helmet. Roman soldiers were later to wear this emblem on their uniforms. Both Greek and Romans used battering rams (often with real ram horns on the tip) that were used on the gates of besieged cities. It was a code that if a city were to open its gates before the head of the ram touched the gates, mercy would be shown its inhabitants.

A major difference can also be seen in the evolution of leadership. In the age of Taurus, the leader of a collective culture or civilization - for example the early pharaohs of Egypt - was seen as the head of spiritual hierarchy, responsible for the prosperity of his people. In the age of Aries, however, the idea of a leader shifted to one who was chief of the army - for example Caesar in Rome - who represented the spirit of Rome conquering. Leaders in each age were both divine (that is, they were the physical incarnation of god) but executed their roles with the very differences that describe Venus (Taurus) and Mars (Aries).

The Age of Pisces

(1 AD to the present)

The age of Pisces is more than just an approximate 2,000 year epoch. Since astrological ages move BACKWARD through the zodiac, Pisces BEGINS each of these 25,800 year astrological cycles. This would indicate then, the Pisces age we are now moving out of has introduced something never seen before in religion. Something that has not been seen for approximately 26,000 years!

The beginning of a cycle that occurs every 26,000 years will not only offer something new to humanity, but an element that represents an EVOLUTION for humanity as well. When the word "evolution" comes up, many think of Charles Darwin sailing all over the world, trying to prove his theory that humans evolved from the animal kingdom, which in turn evolved from the plant kingdom. However, the evolution of humanity can be measured in many other ways.

Physical Evolution

Athletes represent evolution of humanity on the physical level of existence. For those of you who watch an occasional event on the Olympics, you may notice that sometimes a world or Olympic record is exceeded. Besides making the athlete and crowd very happy, breaking a world record also represents an evolution of the ability of the human body. We usually only get to see a 100 meters record get broken by a fraction of a second, so we don't think of it as an evolution, but it is.

We can study this evolution of humanity's ability to run 100 meters by looking at the winning times of the Olympics over the last 100 years. Here we can see a very notable evolution in the amount of time it takes. (If you have them, compare the winning 100 meter time in 1896 with what won last summer in Atlanta). Do with all the other sports, and you will see the human being is physically evolving quite drastically.

Some of you might say we could also look at the results of the ancient Greek Olympics held and study them as well - and I wish we could - for we would have seen SEVERAL HUNDRED years of physical evolution! However they didn't have sophisticated time measuring instruments then. (By the way, these ancient Olympics were outlawed by the pope in the 6th century since these sporting games were also a tribute to the Greek gods on Mt. Olympus and due to the ever increasing number of "fixed" races being said to have taken place.)

Mental and Spiritual Evolution

In the same way our physical body evolves so drastically, so does our mental and spiritual bodies. If we can see such a drastic change in the human physical body over the past 100 years, image what kind of evolution can take place over nearly 26,000 years! Since we can change our minds a lot quicker than we can our physical talents, the evolution of the mind occurs several times more greater than the physical body. Our spiritual body is in a state of evolution as well, however our spiritual evolution is totally dependent on what an individual is TAUGHT, not on the physical or mental capacities they are born with.

When we study the religions in every culture over the past 26,000 years (including what was passed down from the legends and myths of Atlantis), then we indeed see that our current age of Pisces has produced an evolution in religious thought. This evolution begins with the birth of several founders of present day religions who were born during the 500 years before Christ. Buddha, Zoroaster, Lao-tse, and Confucius all came to earth within a short time of each other, all of whom had very special teachings for their ethic groups.

These ancient masters introduced a concept never seen before in religion, and one that represents a true evolution for humanities spirituality, for it allowed our very awareness of the spiritual world. All previous religions worshipped gods (whether in the form of a person, place, or thing) who were DETACHED from the individual. From the ancient pagans who worshipped a river or tree, to the more advanced cultures who worshipped a priesthood or king - all things worshipped were SEPARATE from the individual (besides being above him).

These ancient Asia teachers introduced the revolutionary idea that we are all CONNECTED to nature - or god - in ways well beyond what our 5 known senses can perceive. Christ further evolved this concept with the idea that God was living within each of us, describing in another way we are connected to God. Several hundred years later Mohammed did the same for the Arabs, adding a few other ways you can "meet" Allah. While all these religions developed in the age of Pisces still have God more powerful that the individual - note they offer you the possibility to merge with their deity or spirit, and give the conditions on how to do it.

The Symbol of Pisces in the Age of Pisces

In earlier articles we covered how many symbols of the past astrological ages showed up with great frequency in the religious traditions of that era. This pattern continues in the age of Pisces, for the church that Jesus started first used a fish to identity its members to one another (which was later changed to the cross, to represent the resurrection). This symbol is also used physically in the bishop's miter (which is a representation of a fish head) and is used in custom (for example the practice of eating fish on Friday).

The act of baptism is also related to Pisces, for the immersion of the physical body into water (the universal solvent) represents the Pisces principle of purification by massive dilution (Pisces is a water sign associated with the oceans and seas). While the symbol of Pisces is seen as a glyph, it is still an abbreviation of the full symbol, which is two fish swimming in opposite directions.

The curved lines bending away from each other are the fins of each fish, and the horizontal line not only bonds then together, but represent the division between the material and spiritual world. So actually in Pisces we have several oppositions occurring at once (which explains why many Pisces people seem to be "torn between" many issues at the same time).

Pisces holds the opposition every human has with the normal wants and needs between the mind and heart. They also experience the oppositions that society as a whole present on the individual (for example the conflicting messages of having a church on one street and porno film house on another). PLUS they are conscious of the fact that they are living in a world half physical and half spiritual - both of which are pulling them in opposite directions as well. Poor Pisces!

For that matter, poor humanity as well! As with anything in nature, there is an positive and negative affect with any action, force, or idea. While the religions of the Pisces age developed an awareness to the spiritual world (developing the attributes of joy and love), they also provided a conflict for individuals as well (which in the case of the western church, enhanced such emotions as shame and guilt). While our current Pisces age produced a quantum leap in religious theory, it also produce the ultimate conflict between the heart and mind.

Pisces represents sacrifice, which then became the foundation theme for salvation during these last 2,000 years: "sacrifice your physical pleasures and possessions today, so you can have spiritual sanctity later when you are dead". Aside from food, our strongest physical desire - sex - was turned into an issue of conflict never seen before in humanity. Not only was humanity taught over the last 2,000 years that the human body (in its original form) was something to be ASHAMED about, but humanity was also trained to feel GUILTY if the most natural desire (sexual attraction) ever entered one's feelings! This means that every time a natural feeling or desire surfaced, an individual under these teachings would automatically have a negative reaction when the mind responded to it.

Another negative attribute of Pisces is the "all or nothing" attitude that is usually filtered to individual behaviors and methods for relating to others. Modern western regions do not allow the individuals to "come into harmony" and explore each element that life introduces, which many of the eastern ones practice. Individuals following western teachings then, are forced to follow a policy that goes against nature, for they must abstain coming to terms or learning about elements which life puts in front of us. This attitude hinders education, for many relevant theories of science - such as the one from our friend Charles Darwin - are then censored from students of these religious.

This attitude also left the destruction of many other cultures that did not have gunpowder or massive armies to fight off the forced conversions or inquisitions of the church. In the same way the Bolsheviks murdered the Czar and his family to completely prevent the return of the monarchy to Russia, the Piscean Catholic church destroyed THOUSANDS of local and regional religions - and individuals - to prevent future generations of these peoples to know any other religious thought (which in turn destroyed part of their culture). This is the largest crime ever produced by any institution in the history of humanity.

Copyright: David Perkins

Bio: David  Perkins

David Perkins arrived Dec.17, 1953, 97 degrees 20 minutes west longitude, 32 degrees 45 minutes north lattitude, around the time when local banks and government offices were about to close. Growing up on B-52 bases across America, David became an All American swimmer and serious student, with interests in science, history, people, art and the "unknown."

David graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1977 with a degree in Psychology, teaching credenticals, and a desire to help others. His interest with metaphysics began as a child often gazing at the stars, and in high school when taught how to read tarot cards.

Interest in astrology began while working on an assigned behavioral statistics lab project (the results of which showed this ancient art of describing and predicting behavior outperformed the other standard methods used in psychology. David has since been on four different continents studying astrology's history, philosophy, methods, and uses within many cultures.

Since 1983, David's astrological / metaphysical work has been published throughout Europe, from technical articles in journals - to magazine entertainment pieces and weekly forecasts. In 1985 he completed the first ever instructional and certification course ever given for Astro*Carto*Graphy in San Francisco under it's developer, the late Jim Lewis.

For 10 years he was the featured astrologer in Germany's largest weekly woman's magazine, "Bild der Frau", and currently has a weekly question & answer metaphysical column appearing in Kurier Szczecinski (Szczecin, Poland).

Combining psychology and astrology in his writings to assist people find solutions and direction is David's main calling and scientific side. On the artistic side David has founded FUTURE CIRCUS, a traveling educational program giving students in poorer regions the opportunity to create various forms of music, imagery, and perfomace art using computer technology as well as assisting Szczecin's Teatr Wspolczesny (The Modern Theater of Szczecin).with the creation of video, music, and animation effects.

Other articles by David Perkins:

Astrology and the Star of Bethlehem   
Locational Astrology   
Socrates: The Man, His Ideas, and His Horoscope   

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