The 21st century promises to be a century of innovation and progress provided that Humanity can utilize its technological prowess and innovative foresight in ways that address the many converging crises that we collectively face. It seems that the threats and hence the opportunities that drive social evolution are no longer external as in past epochs; we have arrived at a time when the greatest challenges are generated by a species the Earth itself created, humanity. We have entered what some are calling the Anthropocene, a geological and cultural age in which humans are driving the majority of the changes we will see in the Earth’s climate system and in the development of future history.
The crises are many and varied Climate Change, burgeoning growth of cities and population, the demographic transition, and the deployment of ever more powerful technologies which could present some species wide existential risks. Risks that will require us to act in a unified front, cooperatively, unilaterally, and internationally, and it is here that a radical departure from past behaviors is most needed and interestingly correlates to the symbolism inherent in the two outer-planet transits of Neptune through Aquarius, and Uranus through Pisces.
Provided that humanity can successfully navigate the crises before us utilizing our most visionary technologies and sciences, as well as embracing a much needed cultural evolution that will allow us to act as an interconnected, self-sustaining, intercommunicating organism, taking the message of Carl Sagan’s “Pale Blue Dot” to heart and learning to share this fragile planet with each other. This resonant imagery reflects the ideal vision of the Neptune in Aquarius, and Uranus in Pisces transits, all of which speak to using innovation and technology to unite humanity in a common living language, the vision of the Noosphere (an extension of the biosphere made of all the culture and ideas of the human species, a kind of global mind, currently best represented by the Internet) as described by the scientist Vladimir Verdansky and the mystic Teilhard De Chardin. This is reflected by three major and seemingly disconnected trends in our culture, namely modern technology, such as the Internet, nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality. The increasing social acceptance of Psychedelic substances also called entheogens, which are allowing humanity to explore the frontiers of inner space. Followed by the massive growth of urban centers globally which are becoming catalysts for the acceleration of cultural evolution and technological diffusion.
These are all symbolic events representative of the archetype of Prometheus the mythological framework that is linked to the Planet Uranus ruler of the sign Aquarius and giving a decidedly promethean flavor to the century ahead, and a dynamic on-ramp to the Age of Aquarius as represented by the precession of the equinoxes into the sign Aquarius( due to the earth’s 23.5 degree axis tilt the planet wobbles and shifts its orbit, so that every 2160 years the Sun’s declination shifts its constellation transit boundary by one sign, so that 160 years from now the Vernal Equinox will occur in the sign Aquarius it is this phenomenon, which gives underpinning to the concept of Astrological Ages).
Technologies of Transcendence
Our Promethean age is defined by the massive, global diffusion of cutting edge technologies so remarkable in their reach that they are redefining what it means to be human on Earth in an eco-technic age. The Internet and other communications technologies have facilitated an unprecedented ability for humans to connect to one another, and a cursory glance at how it has shaped social evolution since its diffusion in the last decade of the 20th century is telling. A noted result of the rise of the Internet after 1990 has been an increasingly globalized economy and a subsequent diffusion of ideas, cultures, innovations, philosophies, and spiritual systems. This diffusion of ideas is quickly changing cultures all around the world as these ideas spread uniting people and mobilizing cultures in new directions, much of this development is giving rise to increasing movements that are securing civil liberties across the world and toppling entrenched regimes. As evidence of this we had the Arab Spring and the Occupy movements of 2011 (the ferocity and violence of these movements is reflected by the intensities presented by the concurrent Pluto-Uranus squares that occurred during these events), both empowered by social media websites like Facebook and other platforms that compressed Space-Time distinctions. Increasingly what will be interesting to watch for, is the continued articulation of this trend as mentioned above as machine intelligence increases towards eventual sentience, our devices could potentially continue to merge us into one another and also liberate us, from our physical restraints, granted these are developments that will occur long after these transits are over, but it will be these transits that are symbolic of us collectively crossing this threshold.
The Promethean ethic is merged with the transcendent impulse of Pisces, and the theme is decidedly that innovation does not ask permission to innovate and increasingly it is innovation that will permit a self-fulfilling prophecy of spiritual liberation. Technology will increasingly be used to unite people together under common psycho-spiritual frameworks. This reflects a Neptunian-Piscean ideal which is the science fiction plotline of technological transcendence. This is represented by Raymond Kurzweil’s idea of the Singularity, which is the point at which the exponentially developing computer technologies of the human species reach an event horizon and eventually and very rapidly transcend human intelligence. It is first marked by an increasing convergence of human biology with the products of technology; our bodies begin to be interfaced with our machines.
This occurs anytime someone turns on their computer and starts to use it, brain regions involved in executive functions begin to decouple with the computer and it becomes an extension of the mind and the body increasing the range and reach of our prowess. Increasingly this will take on more monumental proportions as we become able to replace our body parts through synthetic biology, implant microchips into our brains or tissues through the miniaturization of semi-conductors and microchips, in the form of nanotechnology, and eventually with the rise of Artificial Intelligence, we will increasingly be communicating with our machines, and eventually will interface our minds with theirs. All of this reflects the science fiction visions of Uranus in Pisces and the customizable technological developments which mesh with our biology as reflected in Neptune in Aquarius. Customization to individual desires is a decidedly Aquarian concept, and is highly symbolic of the dawning Age of Aquarius.
There many other modern technologies which are increasingly connecting us, which deserve mention, modern air travel and the turbine powered jet engine airframe, international travel and diplomacy, and many more. The decidedly most impactful technology is one that emerged thousands of years ago and has been revolutionizing the human species ever since, it is the rise of cities, a trend which in our age is rapidly accelerating.
The Urban Era: Global urbanization: the Era of the City, Century of Cities.
Our century is euphemistically designated as the Century of Cities, so much so that is fast becoming the most well studied human phenomenon. Cities are decidedly a Uranian convention, incorporating innovation, technology and ideas into concentrated spaces which increase the acceleration of progress and technical development as well as being the main centers for cultural transformations and social upheavals, expressing the promethean ethic. The proliferation of urban centers in the 21st century will continue unabated with the increasing concentration of human population in cities so that by 2050 C.E. 79% of the world’s Human population will be Urban, and most likely living in the burgeoning megacities of the world. Fulfilling the Uranian impulses that push this once cosmic echo into a social imperative with long range consequences and legacies, cities will increasingly shape the human organism.
The Piscean correlation occurs when we imagine the more visionary aspects of what cities do. They unite people across lines of gender, race, sexual orientation, ability and any other artificial distinction that consensus culture has deemed important. They even blur the boundaries of biology by allowing us to combine our genetic material in novel new ways by encouraging at a social level the multicultural diffusion of concentrating disparate people’s into a protracted space. This blurring of distinction is transforming our species and eventually over time will blur the lines of race and biology converging us into a common ethnicity. This satisfies the Pisces imperative towards unification of diverse elements, and the dissolving of boundaries which have created unnecessary separation and alienation something that the more humane cities we are hopefully building will eliminate. Pisces seeks to unite humanity into a common heritage, while at the same time maintaining the rich diversities that make us strong, and this speaks to the Piscean tendency to live in two worlds united by a common thread (harkening to the image of two fish swimming in opposite directions but bound by a rope). As our age accelerates this increasingly Through the Looking Glass World will be activated and empowered by another social trend the increasing use and study of psychedelic substances to treat psychological pathology, and the rise of virtual reality.
Psychonauts: Science Fiction Dreams
Psychedelics and virtual reality are two technologies which allow humans to explore the frontiers of inner space. They take the internal elements of our psyche and in a dreamlike way create visual and spatial simulacrums that are analogous to the quotidian reality we experience every day. This reflects the strong Uranian-Neptunian themes of the current transits that we are all collectively living through.
Of note are the MAPS trials being conducted at Harvard University through its School of Public Health branch. The MAPS trials are studying the beneficial effects of MDMA also known as Ecstasy, and Psilocybin the active ingredient in what is known as magic mushrooms. They are being investigated as possible therapeutics for the treatment of PTSD and chronic depression, especially as it pertains to returning veterans of war who are experiencing these disorders. The preliminary results are showing strong efficacy and trials are continuing to further this work.
Another controlled trial undertaken in Switzerland exploring the psychological effects of LSD on terminal cancer patients. The effects of the drug trips were to reduce the anxiety associated with their subsequent death, and also to help remove existential dread. This decidedly reflects a Neptunian desire to provide inspiration and remove the fear of moving into the great unknowns of our existence in this case the world beyond death’s door. It takes on the Uranian element by the utilization of a chemical molecule, a psychological technology, a drug, to facilitate this mystical awareness. This is no unlike the explorations begun in the 1960’s. What’s more is that this is both a scientific and political effort requiring a sea-change in drug policy, research ethics, and the mainstreaming of a long demonized technology. What’s encouraging is there are future studies in the works along the lines of this research. These studies are decidedly the strongest factor in existence for the correlation of Neptune in Aquarius and Uranus in Pisces, and give rise to this through the looking glass world.
Another area that will allow us to explore inner space using vast technologies is virtual reality. As advancements in nanotechnology, neuroscience, artificial intelligence and computer science continue to accrue and exponentially grow, the capacity to simulate reality into fully immersive and interactive programs will come further into reach. One of the darker qualities of Neptune is its desire to escape into fantasy and “artificial” realities (in quotes because we cannot be sure from a philosophical perspective that we are even real, and this has underpinnings in Quantum Physics). A feature of virtual reality reflecting an oceanic and Piscean quality is how these technologies will eventually be able to seamlessly immerse the user into a fully interactive scenario, so detailed in aspect that it will become near impossible to distinguish the programmed reality from the everyday one. This blurring of boundaries is decidedly Piscean and is said to be one of the main features of this sign. The Uranian and Aquarian aspect is invoked with the vehicle for this possibility being found in our burgeoning and innovative technologies (it is hoped that the reader is beginning to see the connections between all of these disparate elements). What all of this will eventually converge into is the praxis that will begin to shape all future social evolution, what’s telling is that these science fiction scenarios have a long history of eventually proving to be science fact at some point.
The Arcs of Time: The Aquarian Aeon
These two transits are acting in mutual reception (a situation when two planets enter a sign that the other rules) and also as mirrors for one another reinforcing and intensifying the objectives of each, increasing the frequency strength at which these energies resonate. Like a radio signal in the hydrogen hertz range it can be absorbed and broadcasted across the light years, to reach us and deliver its information signature. Tellingly this reflects the longer pattern we find ourselves in and that is the processional Age of Aquarius. We are fast approaching a time when the Spring Equinox will line up on the ecliptic plane (the band of stars surrounding the Earth, from our perspective) with the sign of Aquarius, this is said to correlate with the dawn of the Age of Aquarius a time of intense and accelerated technological innovation and social upheaval leading to a more liberated society. This Aeon will last for 2160 years before then transiting into Capricorn.
While the current transits are temporary and will eventually dissipate their energy signatures will not, and will continue to exert a subtle influence. This sets a precedent that reverberates through time, and sets up a cyclic legacy, a self-repeating fractal pattern that continues to duplicate itself and spread with viral contagion. This pattern will continue beyond the Promethean century and will set up an escalating game of local complexity. This pattern will continue to repeat long after the Uranus in Pisces and Neptune in Aquarius transit is over but will continue to echo in trace amounts as a cosmic echo speaking across time and space. Further, it is this crucial moment in time, this important century that will set the tone for centuries to come another way of saying this is the decisions of this century are laying the groundwork for the track that the dawning Age of Aquarius will follow. Stay tuned, things are about to get very interesting!
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