The ”reverse” order in which the sun moves through the zodiac, makes the Age of Pisces‘ the last age of the solar year, and as such an important closing stage. This Age has brought us much, and was a necessary step in our development. Our welfare has greatly increased, and the process of individualisation that was put in motion has been essential. However, we have overshot our mark, having almost depleted our planet, that will not survive another ten years of exploitation and asocial thinking.
So what did that Age of Pisces entail? How did it commence, and what was its purpose?
When it began, life was very different. Benjamin Creme (see §3.4) describes the times two thousand years ago as follows: ‘It was a dark time. Education was non-existent, people were ignorant. Only a few people (priests) could read and probably write. They were the teachers who kept the common people under their thumbs. You can extend that image all over the world. Most people were farmers, sheep herds, fishermen, craftsmen, etc., that had received no schooling whatsoever. They simply did what they were told. This power structure has existed since the earliest of times.’
Clearly quite a lot has happened since. The ‘kick off’ began with the coming of Jesus. An enormous burden lay on His shoulders to usher in this Age properly.
Buddha and Jesus
The advent and message of Jesus was not just prepared by the prophets at the onset of previous Ages. In the Age of Aries, around 600 to 400 BC, Buddha came with his message as well. An important mission, as Buddha prepared the world for the message and mission of Jesus. Alice Bailey says about this: ‘From Buddha mankind can learn that the road to liberation can be found in detachment, self fulfilment, and our capacity to discern. These acquirements are the first steps towards Christ.’ Buddha explained mankind how important it is to be able to control ‘the lower nature’ before one can enter the higher realms. Through this Buddha embodied the transformation of intelligence into wisdom, whereas Christ made it His work to transform emotion into love. Both have made their mark on their hemisphere, Buddha as Teacher for the East, and Christ as the Saviour of the West. Jesus taught mankind that the individual is of value, whereas till then especially – in the East – a tendency existed to deny the individual. Apart from that, Jesus told us to ‘love our neighbour as we would ourself’; a groundbreaking message for the time.
The Life of Jesus
The most innovative was perhaps Jesus’ life itself. During his life He showed what life is made up of, and what that means for the spiritual path we take as a human being. His life shows us the great initiations that will come our way if we follow His (and therefore our) path. An initiation is a point of crisis on our path, of evolution, and entails an expansion of consciousness: a means to open up our rationality and heart to further the recognition of something already manifest in reality. A further degree of integration of our personality and our soul.
The life story of Jesus is characterised by a series of consecutive initiations: the birth in Bethlehem (first), the baptism in the river Jordan (second), the sermon the transfiguration on the mount (third), the crucifixion (fourth) and the resurrection (fifth). Jesus demonstrated this in one lifetime showed us all this in one life. In one life He tracked and worked His way through a karmic trajectory, for which we have hundreds if not thousands of lives. Yet we all will ultimately ’round’ (pass?) these initiations. Jesus showed us that the human race is offered the opportunity to take a giant step ahead, be it to be reborn or to experience a first initiation. Most people in the world are on the verge of a first initiation.
According to Bailey the message of Jesus can therefore be summarized in three terms: individuality, initiation and identification, cast in words by His remark: ‘I and My Father are one’. The existence of an ‘I’ (individuality), being one (identification with the other), being a divine entity (identification with the Father) and the possibility of our an expansion of consciousness growing (initiation). We now know that the church laid its emphasis differently in the centuries following. In striving for power, the church created the impression (and still does) that contact with the divine can only occur through their own institutions. The overwhelming material richness and splendour of the church further helped enforcing this belief.
Emphasis was placed mainly on Christ as an historic and untouchable figure, and on his suffering and crucifixion. This emphasis has had an enormous influence on our thought: Jesus was/is unattainable for us (though He is an example that we can follow), He had an incredibly hard life (without going into the why, or mentioning the bigger picture and He has died for our sins (whereas He went further and returned, to show us our immortality). In the Age of Aquarius these subjects will get a different treatment. An emphasis on the resurrection seems obvious, as that will emphasize the fact that death does not exist.
The Pisces Symbol
The symbol of Pisces shows two fishes, bound together by a cord. According to Bailey one fish signifies the soul, and the other the personality, and in between them is ‘the thread of Soetratma’, the silver cord that keeps them connected to each other during the entire cycle of life’s manifestation. The sign Pisces is therefore twofold and concerns the coalescing of the soul and the personality. A fusion of which Jesus was the prime example: the individual soul reaching perfection. Even though the soul of man has gained more and more prominence, he has been the prisoner of his personality for the last two thousand years, resulting in our deeply rooted experience to be separated from the rest. The limited and egoistical vision of the personality reigned over the broad and altruistic vision of the soul.
No wonder several spiritual points of view, among which those of the Mayans, call these ages ‘Dark Ages’. It was and still is ‘a battle against the darkness’.
The personality, or the ego, cares only for tangible things like money and material stuff, and has brought many people great prosperity. The ego thinks only in line with its own interests, greatly values status, and money, but can never have enough of it, and is impossible to satisfy. Nor can it stand (bear?) to lose, and it will do anything to save its skin. Most of all the ego thinks in separation: I and the other. The personality knows competition and jealousy, and therewith has created a very hostile world. Exactly what we see all around us: competition, separation, and commercialisation. This is the great poison in the world that has drained the soul from the earth, and brought it to rim of the abyss.
Buddha told us that our greatest shortcoming is ignorance. Not just ignorance regarding birth and death, and our true nature, but ignorance especially about the hardly controllable urges of our personality. The hectic life is typical for Pisces, always busy doing things we’re not ready for on an inner level, denying our selves the experience of the here and now.
As can be witnessed by the many secret societies that have existed throughout its centuries, Pisces also symbolizes occult wisdom, and the secrets of initiation. On the one hand esoteric knowledge was not suitable for the average people of those times, on the other hand the spirit of separation was still so strong that people within these societies liked to keep that information to themselves. In the Age of Pisces one easily felt oneself superior to others. This Pisces energy has contributed greatly to keeping the boundaries between the elite and the common people up for so long. The elite felt superior: the masses were considered stupid with no need for much knowledge.
Till this very day this ghost haunts the world – although meanwhile considerably weakened – as we can witness by the scandals in politics, the corporate world, religious communities, the medical world, etcetera. To keep the illusion alive was (and still is) a favourite pastime: to portray reality differently from what it actually is. Often not even maliciously so, but merely unaware. Many were (and are) blinded by their strong faith in ‘the good cause’.
During the Age of Pisces a different current (wind?) started to blow: the sixth (cosmic) ray of idealism had come into the world. This has caused people to gain ideals, and enabled the development of ideologies (see appendix G for more on rays). For the first time in his history man was willing to die for an ideal. Ideologies emerged within political, economical, social, and philosophical domains, to name but a few. For mankind this was a great progress, but the fanaticism of ideologies also brought great contradictions to the surface.
Now at the end of the Age of Pisces, with the withdrawal of the sixth ray, ideologies will die out. To the sign of Pisces belongs a world of dreams, of fantasy, of play. The great flight the motion picture industry has taken is an exponent of this. Films are generally a (positive) escape from reality. Other escapes from reality are, however, typical to the Age of Pisces as well: addiction to stimulants such as drugs and alcohol, but also gambling, overeating, computer games, sex, shopping, or smartphones.
Ideologies, competition and separation have literally, and metaphorically pushed people beyond their borders. Always, in every Age, war has been waged, but through the growth of the world population and the growth of our personality – and therefore the individualisation, greed and self interest (of countries as well) – the Age of Pisces has produced many wars. Combined with the ever more destructive weaponry this has caused over 60 million casualties of war in the last century of this Age alone.
The energy of the Age of Pisces has brought a pyramid shaped, hierarchical organisation structure into the world, once developed by the Romans. This manner of organising has been perfected in the twentieth century, which is still apparent in large multinationals, organisations and governmental institutions. From the early days on people used to organize themselves based on a mob mentality. As such ‘Pisces’ signifies the ‘collective’, the following of a single leader by the masses. As a result, all people under the leader, being outranked, could then more easily serve as ‘slaves’.
The growth of the individuality makes it painfully clear that this pyramidal structure no longer functions for modern man. Ever more managerial layers are disappearing, and many smaller and flatter organisations are coming to the forefront. The call for transparency is also related to this; no more shady, and unfathomable backdoor politics any more.
The enormous development of our individuality – sometimes overshooting into egoism – has been of great importance for humanity; it is road way from a pack mentality to a group consciousness of strong individuals. The present need for authenticity connect to this, ‘be yourself, everyone else is occupied’.
The Age of Pisces has also been the symbol of collectivity in relation to the growth of the world population. At the beginning of the Age – in the ydpyear zero – no more than three hundred million people lived on earth. In 1804 there were one billion people, and in 1927 already to two billion. By the time of John F. Kennedy’s presidency (1960) the world population had increased to three billion. Since October 2016 the world population has passed seven billion.
Nowadays everything is of a different scale. For the first time we can see everything in a global perspective, and we have even explored space. Through this exuberance we now realize that everything is related to everything and is connected. An insight which in the Age of Aquarius we are going to experience mainly spiritual as well.
The moment of truth is here. There is no stopping it. The Age of Pisces will be washed away by the water from the jar of Aquarius.
This spiritual tsunami is what we will undergo … very soon.