Historical Ephemeris: articles
The next seventy years
An astrological article on the future
Written 1993, yet still relevant!
In 1993 we had an important historical transit, a conjunction of the outer planets Uranus and Neptune, in February, August and October. Many people then and now expect astrologers to make predictions about the future but, frankly, such predictions can only be opinion and assessment. I don't want to predict events or trends, but here's my honest opinion about 1993 and the process which follows.
The last time there was a Uranus-Neptune conjunction was in 1821. Just as the pre-effects of the current conjunction started in 1985-86, when Gorbachev announced reform in USSR and the end of the Cold War, so the 1821 process began in 1815, when Napoleon was stowed away on St Helena, and when Europe, the up-and-coming world power, reassessed its position. The industrial revolution had just lifted off; the map of Europe was redrawn; the final carve-up of the world by imperial powers was embarked on; the USA found its feet; the first independent ex-colonies were formed in South America; the steam-powered railway and the steamboat made their debut; most ancient cultures were being overwhelmed, and the world was seriously beginning its unconscious stampede into global integration, perversely brought about by guns and trade.
It was a massive turning-point. It fully launched the impetus toward our jumbo-jetted, satellite-linked world of today. However, this said, at the time it felt as if conservatism and resistance to change was dominant. This rather resembled the situation in and around 1993!
This time, the conjunction concerns a further transition: into an interdependent world system in which nations are dissolving into regions and federalising into cultural tectonic plates within a global community. Also, a shift is occurring in which we are being forced by circumstance to acknowledge that our previous acts have brought us very close to destruction - and therefore that responsibility and wisdom must characterise the future.
We are being faced with the inevitability of cooperation and reconciliation - by everyone with everybody else. Or die. Very simple. And the emphasis is on the practical means of transition, not on ideals: the conjunction is in Capricorn, an earth sign and a sign ruled by Saturn, the planet of structures and constraints. This is about governance and constitutions, laws and protocols, economics and commodities, land and resources - and the pros and cons of traditions and institutions as stabilisers of the human condition. Do people serve the system, or does the system serve people?
Uranus-Neptune transits don't produce events so much as reality-slippages. It's like the rear wheels going into a skid, so that everyone suddenly finds themselves pointing in a new direction. Reality looks quite different. 1988-89 was a practice-run, an exercise in dealing with the sudden unplanned obsolescence of old ideas and systems - with an injected essence of revived hope underlying it all.
The 1993 conjunction, while upping the chances of chaos and furtive outbreaks of degeneration and regeneration, is likely to be a surreptitious turning-point which sets off a long process of change, not an isolated blip of historical changes which come and then go. The issues of the day actually surfaced in the mid-1960s, during the last comparable energy-period, a Uranus-Pluto conjunction in 1965-66: peace, ecology, human rights, equity, love, global thinking, diet, consciousness. Except that this time, such principles demand overall application, fast, for practical reasons.
The process is likely to take some time: a series of waves, over a 70-year period. In history, 70 years is peanuts - especially when virtually every issue in history is lined up to be reworked.
1993 will yield a shift of awareness and of reality, so that everything begins looking very different. It could involve a sudden shift in the key area of resistance to change at present: the international economy and its markets. While the world economy is apparently changing fast, its fundamental principles remain unchanged and extending rapidly. For while the vested interest of profit, growth and self-interest dominates macro-economic decisions, destruction continues.
But, as was proven at the Earth Summit of 1993, the issues are not simple, and there is too much which has to be handled at one time. Yet all questions are interwoven, inseparable, urgent. Also, no one has much experience in this game. The pattern of the 1989 'velvet revolutions' in Central Europe is likely to reappear in coming times, except deeper and wider: a train of events renders the established system untenable, heads roll, new brains start making quick, basic decisions, and new systems are cobbled together with the aim of effecting structural changes and keeping goods and services rolling - at risk of spontaneous public uproar, even rebellion or mass migration.
So the big question of the 1990s concerns commitment to a longterm process of world change, macro-scale and grass-roots, encompassing domains, hardware, humans and our psyches; dealing with immediate issues in as progressive and consultative a manner as is possible while maintaining order and coordination to keep the world alive and active; something akin to a war-effort without war, in which the populations and resources of the world realign to creating solutions instead of destruction - as appropriate to each circumstance and region, in cooperation with the world.
A tall order. Hence the length of the process. The late 1990s are likely to see a shift of emphasis from dealing with the past and its structures (Uranus and Neptune in Capricorn, Pluto in Scorpio) to dealing with the future and its possibilities (Uranus and Neptune in Aquarius, Pluto in Sagittarius).
A rampant acceleration might be expected from 1995 onwards: ideas will grow, and horizons rapidly expand. People rather than organisations will increasingly be the focus of attention. 'When the people lead, leaders must follow'. Major shifts of all kinds can be expected, building up over the years following 1995, with an enormous accumulating energy-surge which could be both constructive and dangerous. But things are likely to move faster than before, and to come out onto the surface rather than lurk as undercurrents.
Phase one of this chapter of world change is from 1993-2010ish. Reality is likely to become far more flexible, and public perspectives will grow and clash with their old boundaries and containers. The world has seen economic and technological integration during the 20th Century, but this is a time where the focus shifts to the global integration of social and cultural issues - people.
In other words, Muslims and western liberals, haves and have-nots, blacks and whites, women and men, rulers and ruled, all these and more will perforce come to meet, goaded by a constant stream of events which test and redefine boundaries and interchanges - tragedies will be large when errors are made, but triumphs will probably be inspiring, setting many precedents.
It's impossible to see the forms these changes will take, since quantum reality-leaps are involved. For example, how will it affect the world if, to take a wild example, it becomes clear that extraterrestrials are amongst us, bearing technologies and psychologies capable of catalysing environmental and social resolution? We have little experience by which to judge. How will climatic changes affect us? What will be the global effect of the rise of China as a world power?
In 2012-16 we face a crunch time. All that was seen and conceived in the mid-1960s will be fully under test - plus the beliefs and efforts of the generation which was deeply marked by the 1960s, by then in their later life. Rising difficulties will force pragmatic adaptation. There will be more emphasis on structures, but particularly on the capacity of structures to handle and channel change, forced by crisis.
The time for debates will be over and the world will be faced with many imperatives - possibly even a world crisis of enormous proportions. Energy straining against containment: Uranus in Aries square (90°) Pluto in Capricorn. Choices and re-adjustments, stress between individuals and society. Cooperation or breakdown. A major transition or painful ruin - or a mixture of both, depending on our choices.
The period of 2025-31 promises to be exciting, if we progress positively through the preceding phase in the 2010s. By the late 2020s we should see a rapid unfoldment of forward-moving events and developments, immense swings of the balance, times of genius, motion, mingling, activity and momentum. Possibly great progress in unravelling a future culture and world civilisation: Uranus in Gemini, Neptune in Aries, Pluto in Aquarius, in a triangle. Children of the 1980s and 1990s will be in power. Great potential forwardness.
Either this, or if we fared badly around 2012-16, a long drudgerous experiencing of the outcomes of what happened. Yet things are not yet likely to be resolved, even though great progress should have been made: the 2030s will probably be acute, an ongoing knife-edge, with no ease or let-up, yet potentially there can be a great healing, decontamination and reconstruction going on. We'll have to work hard on these and other issues though.
Then come the 2040s, a big time of testing. By now, humanity will have to be united enough and sufficiently in unison to handle things on a planetary scale. The stakes are at their highest ever. This is a time of breakthrough or breakdown: climate, environmental issues and food-production will probably be critical, but our group-psychological capacity to handle breakthrough and its implications will be equally so.
The Uranus-Neptune square (transition-point of the cycle begun at the conjunction in 1993) in 2039-41 is closely followed by a Uranus-Pluto opposition (climax of the cycle beginning in 1965) in 2046-48. Tests of power at the beginning, and a turning-over of reality towards the end. Henceforth things will undoubtedly be different from before. This is it: we will know by this time if we have mastered the world crisis or not.
The good news is that, by 2061-64, we are likely to be launching into an entirely new chapter, heading toward a new horizon, on an utterly new basis. The bad news is that we could be severely reduced in number and lifestyle to a shadow of our former state, if that. It all depends on what we have previously done and not done. This is the Neptune-Pluto square, the first transition-point of a 500-year megacycle beginning in the 1890s, during the Victorian Age and the germination of the global village.
It concerns the building of a new civilisation and cycle of history which has its peak in 2140 and its completion in the 2370s - just to get the time-perspective straight! The roots of this civilisation are concealed within the principles which had been working themselves out during the 20th Century - though I would hazard to suggest that this future civilisation might possess a radically different shape to ours. It has to, because the underlying ethic of destruction on which our civilisation is currently based cannot be perpetuated into the future.
What happens in the future depends on our choices. Entirely. We can be reformed custodians of a transforming, united planetary world, or a collection of evolutionary has-beens who removed our means of survival and reincarnation by blundering default.
It's a wonderful period of history we are alive in, since really there is no choice about what to do. We have no choice but to make the world a safe and happy place to live in. This renders things rather simple. Something to work for.
The Historical Ephemeris ends here
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The Historical Ephemeris © Copyright Palden Jenkins 1993-99
The Historical Ephemeris
by Palden Jenkins
Astro-historical tables for 2,500 years