Jupiter conjoined Saturn on the 21st of December 2020
The Great Year is a term that refers to 20 year chronicle that reflects the cultural evolution of our society. The Great Year is a part of a deeper Cultural Wave that extends, on average, over a repetitious 140 year interval, which in turn is part of a vaster 800 year cycle that outlines macro-consciousness themes that underpin the cultural motifs arising therein.
Specifically referring to the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn, Johannes Kepler noted that the conjunction by declination and longitude of these two ‘social’ planets was the Star of Bethlehem that heralded the birth of the Christ in 7 BCE. Symbolising growth up and out, as well as down and in, Jupiter and Saturn are the two archetypes within the astrological lexicon that account for our experience of growth WITHIN the physical world. This compares to the planets beyond sight that account for deeper evolutionary changes within our collective psyche.
Every 20 years they reach conjunction with each other, given their respective orbits around the Sun of 11.9 and 29.2 years respectively. They align within a particular sign, which in turn is comprised of one of four elements and one of three modes. What is fascinating about their alignment is that their conjunctions align within a specific ELEMENT for a period of 140 years, slowly transitioning over a 40 year phase into a new element, where the successive conjunctions take place. This sequence of elements acts like a wave, outlining the consciousness through which the developments within our social, cultural, political, economic and intellectual worlds are filtered.
Jupiter conjoined Saturn in Fixed Air
On the 21st of December Jupiter and Saturn will conjoin at the very beginning of Fixed Air, Aquarius. Aside from being the first time since 1603 that the Great Year has commenced so close to the start of the Celtic Year, Jupiter and Saturn have not aligned in Aquarius since 1405. This alignment starts off a sequence of successive conjunctions in Air signs that ends in 2219. This time frame is called a Wave. As the wave comes to its wane the Great Year is formed within a new element for one synod, before moving completely into a different element. This transitional time varies in length from 40 years, as with the current transition, to 120 years, which will be the duration of the transition.
The current transition moved from an Earth Wave, which it had been in between 1842 and 1981, to the Air Wave between 1981 and 2020. The transition waves essentially blend together two differing consciousness filters and consolidate the developments within society of one element, whilst preparing culture for a shift in perspective.
Aside from the themes outlined by the conjunctions of the planets beyond sight with each other, themes which outline deeper shifts within our collective consciousness, the themes invoked within the alignment of Jupiter and Saturn account for the macro themes that arise within the socio-economic structures of our material world. On the 21st of December 2020, we enter a time of a Global Renaissance, if the sequence follows the general themes of the previous six Air Waves.
The Element Air
Everything begins with thought just as the Christian Bible opens “In the beginning was the Word…” Creation first forms and comes into being on the inner planes of your consciousness, beginning with the most ordinary things – a thought, that stimulates your imagination, fuels your emotions and ultimately your actions. But remember, those thoughts are initially INVISIBLE – they cannot neither be seen nor plucked from a tree. The source of your material world therefore lies in the invisible realm of energy.
One of the great thresholds is that between the Visible and Invisible, the former being the realm favoured by our current world. And yet, art without the invisible, is mechanical and functional. It is the animation by an intangible quality that brings art alive. That intangibility is unknown and has many names – quintessence, gOd, prana, the Muse, beauty, silence, wind, sound – yet is still a quality that gives form something more than mere technique and skill.
Thought is merely the attempt to take the anonymity out of the unknown and the process turns this invitation into possibility and welcome. Thought is the wind of the mind, blowing through and over everything, moving it, turning it, seeking to envelope it. Thought is silent breath and it is the first action we take upon incarnation. It is concept and ideal. It is perception.
Air is Space. Boundless and infinite, the generosity of this element allows everyone and everything to exist. It gives room to manoeuvre, to become, to be. Without space, perspective and reflection, individuality is not possible. It is also distance, which can be lonely and removed but also rich and full.
Air is Ruach, or breath. It is the gentle breeze that soothes and cools; it is the storm of fury; it is the wind that carries the messengers from the heavens to Earth; it is the creative and spontaneous breath along which innovation arises. It is sound and music. It is the control of pain and the path to the inner world.
And we all breathe the same Air.
You do not live in isolation, separate from those within your environment, devoid of fresh air to breathe. The vital “Air” you inhale deeply into your being is not simply there to aid you to receive the necessary oxygen to keep you alive. It allows sound and light to circulate. Information is carried on those light and sound waves.
Accordingly element Air describes our interconnectivity and communion; our ability to draw forth knowledge and to communicate it to those around us; and our sense of fellowship and humanity. Thoroughly mind orientated, Air is that part of our consciousness that views the world through a lens of objectivity, reason and abstraction.
Air is our sense of how we organise space, figuratively and literally. It co-ordinates and informs our sense of perspective, assisting us to live within certain concepts and notions, inspiring us to live virtuously in accord and symbiosis with those who similarly consent to a world-view.
Air is our connection to the breath of gOd and the wind that blows where it will. It is that which animates our physicality and without which life withers and diminishes. The conjunction within this element is an active matrix to generate a reality fundamentally based on these notions of space, idealism, perspective, interconnectivity and communion.
The Air Wave
The Great Year forming within this ‘Air wave’ is therefore marked by an intellectual revitalisation, driving social, political, and economic transformations, with philosophical and scientific roots. This is what we can expect to unfold over the coming 120 years, just as we saw massive communications developments emerging between 1981 and 2000 as the communication and knowledge framework for what we now take for granted was laid down in preparation for this time, when Jupiter and Saturn conjoined in Cardinal Air, or Libra.
The forthcoming alignment is in Fixed Air, or Aquarius, a zodiacal sign associated with a core that, resides within each and every human, remains unaltered by the opinions and beliefs of other people. It is a core that you must tap into if you are going to live your truth. Being true to yourself means you have to trust and follow your inner voice. This can be frightening especially if it leads you away from a path that other’s want you to walk. It may feel that risk is required but really that is an illusion because by listening to your inner guidance system – your intuition – means that you have to get out of your head and listen to your gut.
Remember that true freedom comes when you finally realise that you have not made a mistake, nothing in your life is out of place and every state of mind you experience – joy and wonder; despair and loneliness, is part of your path. Despite the pressures to conform and to deny your genius, your inner, inviolate spirit, you are neither broken nor in need of fixing. This wave therefore marks a time of deep reflection on the inner world, on the way that we are creating our society and the systems that enable us to form an unified whole, based on consensus ideals.
Yes, it is entirely possible that challenges over creating a world that truly listens to the individual will arise, especially given other cycles and unfoldments that appear to contradict this ethos. But we are establishing a world that is focused more on individualism, within a unified whole.
But this time is starting off a longer wave that historically has correlated with intellectual Renaissances. It is the seventh such wave since the dawn of ‘civilisation’, so let us briefly review the macro themes of the previous six waves.
The Previous Air Waves
During the first Air Wave of Elemental Epoch I civilizations got their first taste of human genius with polymaths like the Yellow Emperor, Enmerkar, Gilgamesh, and Imhotep. Language seemed to be the focus with the Tower of Babel and the God of Scribes.
By the second Air Wave, the artistic Harappan culture was flourishing and ready to be invaded by the Aryans to create the great Vedic civilisation. The Egyptians were using their minds to create irrigation systems, worker’s quarters and labyrinthine pyramids to try and avoid future calamities, just as the Sumerian renaissance was in full throttle.
During the third Air Wave Greek mythology emerged, a meta-story that has had a lasting impact on the cultural motif of Western culture. The Phoenicians created the first alphabet and King David of the Israelites penned the psalms. In the East, it was the time of the Zhou Dynasty’s renaissance under the Mandate of Heaven.
The great outpouring of Macedonian culture occurred during the fourth wave as Aristotle tutored Alexander the Great to build an empire that would act like an archaic version of the Internet. Highways of intercultural exchange stretched from Greece to India centred in Alexandria. The development of Stoicism and the quest for moral and intellectual perfection began as the Great Library, Great Lighthouse and Colossus were engineered.
As we move closer to modern times, we have a broader account of historical trends and therefore can make better sense of more specific themes. Whilst there are likely to be darker reactions to the cultural movements, we clearly understand the Church repression of the Hellenistic culture that produced the Dark Ages, during the fifth Air Wave. It was during this time that the Goths, Huns and Vikings rampaged and the legends of King Arthur and the eventual rise of the Merovingian Franks under Clovis I were Europe’s intellectual saving grace.
In India the Gupta civilization flourished and experienced their Golden Age with extensive developments in science, technology, engineering, artistic expression, dialectic, literature, logic, mathematics, astrology, religion, yoga, architecture, sculpture, painting and philosophy. As Bodhidharma transmitted Zen Buddhism to China down that old Silk Road the Guptas back home were playing chess and designing the Indo- Arabic numerals that would become the number system of the modern world.
Then the sixth Air Wave came with the vibrant Western rebirth of classical culture rediscovered through Arabic manuscripts. Marco Polo visited China to experience the vibrant social life of the Mongol-occupied Yuan Dynasty. Chinese inventions filtered back down the Silk Road even as Dogen Zenji brought Zen to Japan. Osman I created the Ottoman Empire, the centre of Islamic culture for over six centuries. While William Wallace was busy liberating Scotland, the Sukhothai were crafting the Thai alphabet and Venice was minting the golden ducat to facilitate commerce for the next 600 years.
The Dawn of the Seventh Air Wave
And so we stand on the threshold of the seventh ‘pure’ Air Wave to emerge, a dawn, or Global Renaissance, is upon us within the redistribution of power, unseen since 1518. Over the past 400 years, electricity was unleashed and we experienced the Enlightenment and the Scientific Revolution during the Fire Wave. In the Earth Wave the secrets of matter were probed, atomic power was experienced and the genome mapped. The greatest Industrial Revolution humanity has witnessed emerged. Therefore, it only seems natural to think that in the coming Air Wave that we would unlock the secrets of the mind and space to experience the greatest outpouring of awareness, ideas, thought, concepts and knowledge.
However, it is entirely possible that we could experience a Dark Age of the Mind, with the prevalence of Fake News, corrupted and manipulated use of knowledge as seen on social media and by the propaganda from global corporations and governments, but since this cycle starts with Fixed Air, it is up to us to voice our opinions on how we want to direct the telos of this ‘Air’.
The common elements of past Air Waves point to advances in new systems to avoid or minimise calamities (or to artificially create them!); new ways of storing and exchanging information; new ways of generating music, rendering images, creating movies, engaging with virtual reality and AI, and in making more personal news, knowledge and community. Socially, ‘religious’ unity through combination and synthesis influenced strongly by non-dual philosophies, international commitments to non-violence, subduing the masses to create a unified whole, research into nanotechnologies, space exploration and consciousness studies are likely..
We’ve already experienced the birth of a generation of indigo geniuses destined to change the world, with Uranus and Neptune in Fixed Air and they are a totally different breed, almost alien like! It is a fascinating time to be alive!
Andrew Smith © 2020
Inspired by Kelly Lee Phipps, The Element Wave Chronicle, 2011