EQUINOCTIAL & SEASONAL ZODIACS
To add to the debate of which zodiac to use, we are confronted in RSs work with abroad question on the zodiacs. He presents us with several other zodiacal beginnings as well as zodiacs going in the opposite direction. In the work on the evolution of the animal kingdom, we meet Cancer as the beginning, while in Hauschkas work on minerals he gives a Leo start to the zodiac. In one other work associated with human social development I have noticed a Virgo starting zodiac, while the twelve senses work uses a Libra starting zodiac as well. In all these zodiacs the description of their application is through the zodiac in the opposite direction to what we are use to. There is much to explore in this but much of it will have to wait for another time.
The Archetypal and Manifest Zodiacs
The Astrological model (20) identifies the Cancer to Leo zodiac as possibly having some special significance. The Astrological model presents us with a different structure to the zodiac than the 'traditional' anti clockwise Aries through Pisces zodiac, used by most of Astrology. Initially the pattern looks chaotic even meaningless however as we look into it more there is an order which arises. As described in Astrological Science -12 fold, there is a lot of order in this model and we can see all the laws from the earlier levels of the Astrological spiral are carried through in this patterning.
Being of the Astrological model we can expect it to be archetypal in nature and therefore to describe founding principles of things. From this model we can see Cancer and Leo stand out as the only signs ruled by a planet each. We can note however that the Sun and Moon form a creative polarity with each other at level two of the Astro. Model. Following Koliskos lead given to us in The Twelve groups of Animals and that Mother Cancer can easily be seen as the starting point of life we can track the development of this zodiac by moving in a clockwise direction going from Cancer > Gemini > Taurus.....through to Leo. If we follow the line of order starting at Cancer and moving through the other signs to Leo, we see the double helix comes into form. This mimics a DNA like series of twists.
In " The Twelve Groups of Animals" Kolisko interprets the animal kingdoms evolution from Protozoa to Mammals through this twelvefold process starting with Cancer running backwards through to Leo. In that work we see outlined a fundamental manifestation of the archetypal law. We are not talking about the patterning of hair on a dog or feathers on a bird, which is more according to fibonacci number series, but a more fundamental patterning of all animal evolution or the animal evolutionary archetype.
The next question is, how does this zodiacal patterning relate to the circular zodiac we are use too? We are given a hint about this process when we see the Twelve senses zodiacal patterning uses a patterning of the zodiac based upon the lemniscate. This zodiac though starts with Libra and not Cancer. We can however note the principle.
In the familiar circular zodiac we have an arrangement of signs around the circle in a positive and negative order. Aries +. Taurus -, Gemini + etc. It is also known that all living things and many minerals carry an electrically charged polarised form. This principle is carried right do to human life needing a male and female sexual polarity to come into form. So it can be stated that polarisation is the natural state of manifest forms. In the stage one zodiac this polarisation is external . We are defining the zodiac by the dual rulership of the planets. Each planet of the model rules two signs of the zodiac and so on. So if we are to head towards the polarised manifest circular zodiac, as it appears in the sky, then this polarisation must be internalised.
Before we move on let us note first that the stage one diagram has been created by externalising the polarity. That is, all the positive are placed on one side, while all the negatives on the other, mimicking the level 2 law. If this pattern was placed directly on a circle we would have all the positives on one side and all the negatives on the other. Interestingly this is exactly what we have when we put the periodic table on a circular format. This too is a topic all its own and to be outlined in a later essay. We can note from it though that again polarity is a function of manifestation.
Too take the next step we can see that a lemniscate form can be made in this zodiac through the unwinding of the mutable signs. From Astrological Science we have been shown how not only are the signs ordered in polarity, but they are also ordered according to the level 3 -modes structure as Cardinal Mutable and Fixed.
Stage one has this same internal modal order as stage 3, however they are all positive modes or negative modes sitting together. The most moveable part of the Zodiac is the Mutable signs. This is their function, to mediate between the two poles of Cardinal and Fixed. So to unwind this spiral we can first of all unwind the mutables, and in doing so we create an internal polarisation within the four quarters of the lemniscate. The negative Pisces now sits between the positives Aquarius and Aries.
In "the Planets" chapter this patterning is explored further with regard to a twelve fold planetary structure and the Human spiritual path. In this example and the twelve senses we see described in both these examples, Human psychology and spiritual development. These are pretty abstract realities and a little removed from the vital basics of manifestation. It could be argued that if these things did not happen the rest of the planet could not care less.
So we can suggest stage two - the lemniscate - indicates a pattern or activity that stands slightly removed from the archetype and yet still behind manifestation. It appears to be an intermediate stage between these two.
The third step of this process is to unwind the bottom half of the lemniscate to create the zodiac we are use to. This zodiac, while often used for describing a 12 fold personality division, it is more traditionally used to describe the physical body. Aries - head, Taurus -Throat, Capricorn-knees etc.
This now brings us to another big question. What is the relationship between the Cancer >>>> Leo zodiac and the Aries>>>> Pisces zodiac?
The zodiac division we take for granted is the Aries>>>>>Pisces zodiac, which we saw in the last chapter is based on the very physical manifestation of the seasons. Even more specifically, of the northern hemisphere. So before folks in the Nth hemisphere get too carried away with drawing associations between seasonal activity and archetypal zodiacal phenomena, please remember the north's experience is not ours in the south.
To gain a clearer picture of these two zodiacs we can put the traditional planetary rulers on the 'finished' stage 3 zodiac. Look at where the Aries zodiac starts from a planetary point of view. Is it not a little strange it starts at a Mars Jupiter cross point rather than the Sun Moon mid point or at least the Saturn mid point or the Venus Mars mid point. The zodiac according to the modes presented earlier also supports the notion put forward by this planetary zodiac.
THESE DIAGRAMS INDICATE THE ARIES >>>>>> PISCES ZODIAC IS NOT ORIENTATED BY THE ARCHETYPAL MODAL, PLANETARY OR ZODIACAL LAW BUT BY THE PHYSICAL SEASONS and hence highlights further its relationship to matter and a physical earth life than the archetype or spirit. It is a manifestation zodiac.
The only apparent anomaly of this planetary and zodiacal structure is that Cancer and Leo are ruled by the Moon and Sun. The Sun and the Moon make up the primary polarity of life ( level 2 ). From our view they are the same size and are far larger than any other of the heavenly bodies. They are set apart in all mythologies, from
the other planets as Mother and Father, Rangi & Papa, Yin and Yang, beginning and end. Cancer in Astrology is the mother and the source of life, while Leo is Lion the King of the Jungle, the peak of one personal creative expression. This Cancer >>> Leo zodiac structure again places the Sun and Moon as prominent points of the natural cycle by being the beginning and end. Worthy of individual rulership of their signs and imaging the primary polarity we found as the source of life at level 2.
Quite unconsciously we do use this zodiac in modern Astrology. The two things that do travel backwards in traditional Astrology are the Precession of the Zodiac and the movement of the north node.
Precession of the Equinoxes
The Precession of the Equinoxes, is the name given to the backwards movement, through the zodiac, of the position of the Sun at the Spring Equinox, in the Northern Hemisphere. This phenomena is the only major use of the constellations remaining in most Western Astrology. It is from this spring equinox point, that the signs begin and are marked off in equal divisions. They are however not a division of the constellations, they are a equal 12 fold division of the ecliptic, the Suns apparent path around the Earth, as outlined earlier.
The position of the Spring Equinox moves 'backwards' through the constellations at the rate of 1 degree every 72 years. It takes approximately 2160 years to move through one equally divided constellation and 25,920 years to go once around the zodiac. At present we are placed between 4 and 6 degrees of the constellation of Pisces. - depending on the constellational division one uses. It is this cycle from which we arrive at the concept of the age of Pisces and Aquarius. This equinoctial cycle has been used by many scholars to correctly indicate the developmental history of humanity. It not only indicates the cultural development, it also provides the structure for understanding the spiritual evolutionary development of humanity as well.
At the earliest we will not have the equinox in Aquarius for another 300 years. Allowing for the orb effect of 3 degrees we are still over 100 years away from moving into orb of Aquarius. So where is all the Aquarian energy of our present time coming from. The quick answer is the Saturn, Uranus Neptune conjunctions from 1987 - 1997 and the Uranus and Neptune transits through Aquarius from around 1995 till 2005. We are also in the orb period of Aquarius so its early influences will be effecting us. Another reason is that our evolutionary process is speeding up due to the effects of the pollution of our atmosphere. We, humanity along with all other species, are going to seed early and in doing so our future evolution is being sucked towards us. Thus the Aquarian influences of the future are coming earlier and stronger than they may have if industrialisation was handled in another manner. I suggest that at the present rate of decline of our atmosphere humanity will have had the chance to evolve in consciousness at least, to the end of the 6th post atlantian period by 2012 and to the end of the 7th post atlantian period by 2025. By this time I suggest the free oxygen of our atmosphere may be all but consumed by pollution and that natural human life on Earth may well be impossible from that point. I say our consciousness can evolve as our bodies may be much slower to adjust. Which is why they will go the way the frogs presently are. 4000 years of consciousness evolution within 25 years is a lot of culture shock. Anyway I stray from the subject at hand. Another time.Rudolf Steiner has outlined the Cultural Epochs as follows Constellation Cultural Epoch Leo The last Atlantian epoch Cancer Indian - Beginning of the Post Atlantian periods Gemini Persian Taurus Egyptian Aries Roman Pisces European 5th post atlantian Aquarius Russian 6th Capricorn American 7th Sagittarius Beginning of the next cycle of seven civilisations.
Constellations and Ages
So here in the Cancer zodiac we have an image of the archetypal spiritual and cultural development of humanity. As this is the main use of this Zodiac in Western Astrology, I choose to call it the Equinoctial Zodiac as opposed to the Seasonal zodiac we have starting at Aries.
It should be noted our Solar system takes 220 million years to go once around the Galaxy. So this Equinoctial cycle is not based on a Galactic rotation. It is understood that our solar system and seven other Stars are circling around the star Alcyone which is placed in the Pleaides. This cycle takes 25,920 years.
This Precession of the Equinoxes is still a northern hemisphere phenomena. For the Southern Hemisphere we are in the opposite constellation. Our Spring Equinox is in fact in Virgo at present. In the future we are moving towards a Leo epoch. This indeed presents us with a problem and possibilities. Are we in the southern hemisphere in a different cycle of evolution?.
When looking at any particular age though it is interesting to note that Pisces exists within a 'cross' relationship with the signs Virgo, Gemini and Sagittarius. Whenever one of these signs are emphasised all will become active. In the Pisces age we have the Christ as the avatar of this period. He preached open hearted compassion for all beings ( Pisces ) and a direct personal relationship with God (Gemini). What we have seen develop during this age is the Catholic Christian church is the promotion of chastity, purity, and sin (Virgo) through a dogmatic theology (Sagittarius). So what we have is an impulse of the age with its counterpoint manifesting simultaneously. More examples could be explored.
In the coming Aquarian age, we all have the potential to personalise the message and gift of the Christ. We can all function as a messenger of God. The focus now is upon the Aquarian qualities of acknowledging the God within each of us. The group becomes a collective of 'gods' with the leader of the time arising out of the needs of the time. The challenges will arise from Leo - the desire of one individual to be the supreme 'god', Taurus - the challenge of letting go of what we believe to be ours and to share it with the collective, Scorpio - To trust our fellows with our nuggets of gold.
In the Southern Hemisphere we could look for how Leo is in fact our age impulse. According to the Equinoctial Zodiac this would place us at the end of the cycle. Leo becomes the constellation of full conscious creative awareness. It is in Leo we become our truly creative selves. While it indicates 'the King' it is the beneficent, magnanimous leader who shares the bountiful plenty of our own creativity with all about us. In this scenario Aquarius becomes the 'anti hero'. The dogmatic, set traditional beliefs of the society which becomes the limitation to the creative expression of the individual. So are we in the south following more individual paths, while those in the north are moving more strongly towards a community of individuals?
All of life will give indications of which impulse is appropriate. All we need do is look and see as time moves on. At present the development of global communication, silicon chip technology, the rising people power are all Aquarian impulses. Likewise with the development of these Aquarian activities there is a dramatic release in the potential for the individual expression, in the forms of more avenues of personal expression through writing, music, art etc. The whole world is now your stage. You have free access. All you have to do is be heard. Both Leo and Aquarius are active here. The fact you are reading this is a testament to this very point.
Again the fact the Earth is polarised to the North pole, may well hold the deciding vote in which impulse is dominate in Human evolution. What do you think?
This brings up for consideration what the connotation of an Earth magnetic pole shift, in 2012 will actually mean. If indeed this does happen. If the poles shift then this orientation of the equinoxes to the northern hemisphere, due to the north pole dominance of the Earth, will have to be reconsidered. If the south pole now, comes to dominance then we will need to use Libra rather than Aries as the spring beginning of the zodiac, and the Leo rather than Aquarius as our equinoctial age constellation. All interesting and I guess we will have to wait for the magnetic pole shift and see what happens.
The Moons Nodes
The other major Astrological influence using this 'backward' motion is the Moons Node. These are Astronomical points in space rather than anything 'real'. The Moons nodes are where the Suns path and the Moons path cross. This point , as seen from the Earth moves backwards on a cycle of 18.5 years.
It will suffice at this stage to say the nodes are indicators of the "destiny moments" in an individuals life. Either when planets transit the birth and progressednodes or when the node transits sites in the natal and progressed charts, these are opportunities available to us to pick up, if we wish. They are not fated. As such they are moments the spirit can impact upon its course of future evolution as apart from 'karmic events' coming at us to deal with. Again this indicates an orientation to the spirits possible action, not the Astral bodies fate.
The south node can be seen as the past and the north node as the future. The south node is all the talents and skills one brings from the past and now needs to be used as the basis upon which to build the future- the north node. Some Astrologers give a more fatalistic view of this relationship and suggest the south node must be left behind to attain the north node. I do not support this. One builds upon the other. Yes there is a balance achieved in the process however the future must be an organic growth out of the past using the past for the development of the future.
From all the above and from the results of investigations into using the traditional and octave planets in relationship to the Equinoctial zodiac I suggest, it finds its activity as an indication of the spiritual developmental process of the Human. (see "The Planets") . I am left to conclude the Cancer > Leo zodiac outlines another layer of the archetypal spiritual impulses coming into life from the Universe. These are essential spiritual formative impulses upon which matter and consciousness accumulate. This is one aspect of Geothes Being.
The Aries \ Pisces zodiac on the other hand is linked to the seasonal cycle of only the northern hemisphere of the Earth. The spring equinox is seen as the beginning of the year, while Aries is seen as the first sign. So we have the signs interpreted in relation to the unfolding and contracting of the seasons in the Northern Hemisphere.
The unfolding of the 'seasonal' zodiac is used in many ways to describe the path of growth on Earth of any process one wishes to apply it too. One basic example follows: The path of the individual through personal discovery, - Aries to Gemini, to tribal awareness - Cancer to Virgo, to relationship awareness - Libra to Sagittarius, to Social awareness - Capricorn to Pisces, to spiritual awareness. This 12 fold patterning can be applied to any process and will accurately describe its 12 stages of earthly development.
The Houses provide another example. They are a further derivative from this 'earthy' zodiac and are based on the position of eastern horizon in the birth chart as their starting point. Aries rules the first house, Taurus the second and so on. Being another step towards the Earth - its eastern horizon - they outline very real practical manifestations, of where in ones life any planetary influence will appear. This reality is taken further in the practice of Astro Carto Graphy. ( see layer chapter). This method is where the birth chart is adjusted for an individuals travel about the planet. A chart is drawn up as if the person was born at the same time (for the birth place) yet at a different location. This moves the eastern horizon to another place in relation to the planets. Interestingly the same planetary relationships and activity start manifesting in different ways in the new location. This is a very useful system for geomagnetic manifestation, but in this context just adds proof to the claim that these earth based phenomena accurately indicate physical manifesting influences.
The Seasonal zodiac has been the most widely used in both Constellational and Signal Predictive Astrology for thousands of years. When we look at the planetary rulerships of the signs of this seasonal zodiac, on the circle, they do not represent any inherent pattern, as we saw earlier. Indeed looking at it this way one must ask why would anyone start a zodiac at Aries? It is a fact though that the physical body is appropriately described by the Aries \ Pisces zodiac and that foetus development does start with the Head and grow towards the feet.
The fact these zodiacs head in opposite directions must have significance. Alice Bailey suggests the different directions relate to the opposing processes of descent into matter - anti clockwise and the rise of the spirit away from the Earth - clockwise.
Again the polarity between Manifest life on Earth and Spiritual impulse is apparent in these two zodiacs. We can conclude - The Aries \ Pisces zodiac appears concerned with material life on Earth - the descent into matter, while the other, Cancer \ Leo is concerned with the spiritual unfoldment of the individual and its rise to spirit.
Spiritual unfoldment is the point of our evolution as described by the Procession of the Equinoxes and mirrored in our evolution of the Human to full Ego incarnation, especially in this age of Pisces. Now we have this potential - Ego\ spirit consciousness - being at the end of the age of Pisces, how are we moving forward into the Age of Aquarius?
Possibly, as conscious individuals motivated by our individual connections to the spirit, which enables us to function as empowered equals for the good of the whole. Here leaders arise out of the need of the time rather than being based on a personal need to control. The people who we need to be in power will be. With the spirit incarnating we have the potential to moderate and even control the wild Astral body impulses. Our bestial natures can hopefully be subdue enabling a greater sense of empathy for our fellow humans.
Centrifugal and Centripetal forces
In a spiralling motion, the creation of the spiral is maintained through an interplay of two sets of forces. One set moving from the centre to the periphery in a an anti-clockwise centrifugal motion, while the second moves from the periphery to the centre in a clockwise centripetal motion.
Individual researchers, like Schuberger, Schweck and Riech have all found the centripetal clockwise spiral is life promoting. The centrifugal anticlockwise motion was destructive to life. Riechs terms were that the clockwise motion created Orgone energy while the anticlockwise motion created Dor energy. Hence we have the building up of life and the destruction of life.
Using what was said earlier about Centrifugal and centripedal forces we can add we have the Equinoctial Zodiac moving clockwise, indicating the archetypal 'life' creating process, while the Seasonal Zodiac, moving anticlockwise outlines the materialising 'death' process. To enlarge on this it will be of value for the reader to explore Geothes concept of creative processes. He outlined how each created being has an incarnation phase and an excarnation phase. The incarnation phase was were the necessary forces for life were being drawn together. This phase is essentially invisible. The comes the manifest phase of form creation. What we see as a life form is essentially a form already moving towards death. The coming into form brings manifestation, yet the creative forces drawn together in the first phase then begin to move towards maturity and dissipation and seeding. Hence Earthly manifestation indicated by the anticlockwise Seasonal Zodiac, is the last part of this creative process, showing our moving towards maturation and death on the physical plane. The opposite is another aspect of our journey back to spirit.