Precession of the equinoxes

You’re aware of the Earth’s daily rotation around the Sun. It takes 24 hours and measures night and day.

You’re aware of the Earth’s annual rotation around the Sun. It takes 365 days and measures the four seasons of the year.

But the Earth also has a rotation cycle through the constellations. It’s called the precessional cycle or the precession of the equinoxes and it’s currently estimated to take 25,772 years.

The precessional cycle

The precessional cycle is an observable phenomenon.

The constellations slowly rotate around the Earth and if you get up shortly before dawn on March 21 and look due east you will see the constellation Pisces on the horizon. It’s been there for roughly the last two thousand years.

Within a couple of hundred years the constellation Aquarius will be there.


Hipparchus (190-120BC) is considered the founder of trigonometry but he’s most famous for his incidental discovery of the precession of the equinoxes.

Using previous star charts left by the Chaldeans he noticed that the positions of the stars had shifted. This indicated that the Earth was moving, but ancient astrologers, long before Hipparchus, were aware of the precessional cycle.

The first astrologers derived their knowledge of astronomical ratios and cosmic relations by applying the Law of Correspondences aided by their highly developed psychic faculties.

Hipparchus, like all ancient astronomers, was an astrologer. He was schooled in the knowledge of magic, astrology, divination, mathematics and religion as taught by the Chaldeans; and he observed the night sky to learn its astrological influence on life.

The constellations

The constellations are not the zodiac signs. Astronomers gaze at constellations in the sky and astrologers examine zodiac signs in birth charts.

The zodiac is a belt of astral energy that encircles the Earth.

The constellations play no direct role in astrology. They give the zodiac signs sequential order and pictorial descriptions so the constellation Pisces is not the zodiac sign Pisces.

The constellation Pisces simply reveals that Pisces is the twelfth sign of the zodiac and its constellated picture describes its traits and characteristics.

Precession in astrology

The precessional cycle in astrology measures the time it takes the vernal equinox to make one complete trip through the zodiac.

It has a retrograde motion so the equinox always enters a sign at the end of the 30th degree.

This great cycle governs the spiritual and mental influx being received by humanity at different stages of its evolution; and measures all the different mental and spiritual forces possible during one precessional cycle.

The cycle is commonly rounded off to 26,000 years; the ancients used 25,920 years; and the latest estimate places it at 25,772 years.

Precession gives rise to the astrological ages. It determines the plane from which the mental forces are received during each astrological age.

The zodiac sign in which the precessional pointer is located identifies the age.

Whilst located there life on Earth comes under the sign’s influence. The sign gives life a specified trend and measures the mental and spiritual forces being received by humanity during a designated age.

There are 2,148 years in each astrological age (25,772 divided by 12) and the precessional pointer is currently in the zodiac sign Aquarius. It backed into Aquarius in 1881.

Astrology for Aquarius – sharing our knowledge

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