You know how sometimes, in order to start fresh, everything first needs to completely fall apart? That’s basically been the energy of this pandemic-laden year, which is finally coming to a close and bringing us from the end of the Age of Pisces to the beginning of the transformative Age of Aquarius. (Yes, the Age of Aquarius as in, “the dawning of the,” featured in that catchy bop from in the musical Hair.) But what is the Age of Aquarius, actually?
An astrological “age” shifts about every 2,150 years, when the Earth’s rotation moves into a new zodiac sign around the spring equinox. There’s some debate about when the Age of Pisces ends and the true Age of Aquarius begins, but considering the massive transits that happened in 2020, a common hypothesis it that we truly enter in the beginning of 2021. For some evidence, note that on the upcoming winter solstice (December 21, 2020), Jupiter and Saturn conjoin in the sign of Aquarius with the Great Conjunction; and also, seven celestial bodies move into Aquarius in February of 2021. Suffice to say, we’re leaving the Age of Pisces, which has been a ride.
“The Age of Pisces shaped many belief systems, but now it’s time to bring our practices into a way of life that keeps us connected, not segregated, to create a foundation that can bring us into a new age,” says Corina Crysler, transformational astrologer. “This year was largely the work of Pluto and Uranus, where any structures built on old traditions were dismantled. Pluto exposed many of Saturn’s structures for our personal evolution. But a series of transits will push us towards the Aquarian influence.”
Below, learn about Aquarian energy that’ll guide this forthcoming era, then get intel from astrologers about what the Age of Aquarius is and means for you (and the world) into 2021.
Characteristics of Aquarians that’ll guide the Age of Aquarius
Before we deep dive into answering what the age of Aquarius is and means as an era, let’s revisit its energy and the common traits that those born under the sun sign share. “[Aquarians] channel from the collective consciousness and ether, and bring the intangible to life with their creations,” says Crysler. “They often know what we need before it’s needed, and their intention—although they sometimes can seem detached—is typically for the greater good of humanity.”
“[In the Age of Aquarius,] the power is turning over to the individual, and giving the freedom for you to choose your own reality based on what aligns with your soul.” —Adama Sesay, astrologer
The Age of Aquarius follows a similar progressive, forward-thinking, “we versus I” mentality of visionary, rebellious, innovative, and eccentric Aquarians. It focuses on humanitarian pursuits of valuing each person’s individuality, holding and taking care of each other as a unit, and also disrupting the system. As Adama Sesay, astrologer and creator of Lilith Astrology, points out, there will be a major shift in power dynamics in this era. “For eons the power has rested in traditional, oppressive hierarchical structures, and their beliefs dictated our reality,” says Sesay. “[In the Age of Aquarius,] the power is turning over to the individual, and giving the freedom for you to choose your own reality based on what aligns with your soul.”
What to expect as we enter the Age of Aquarius
1. Three Mercury retrograde cycles in air signs
“What’s intriguing me [about the beginning of the Age of Aquarius] is Mercury will retrograde in all the air signs,” says astrologer Colin Bedell, author of Zodiac Signs: Gemini, referring to quick-witted Gemini, judicious Libra, and, yes, Aquarius. So, mark your calendars for the three retrogrades happening in 2021: from January 20 to 30, May 29 to June 22, and September 27 to October 18.
These times might have an interesting impact on communication, and may even prove to be an opportunity to learn how to understand one another better. “With Jupiter and Saturn transiting fixed-air Aquarius, too, I’m hoping we will learn the skills to perceive our experience more accurately, holistically, to listen more carefully to our loved ones, and give voice to the emotions and thoughts that need to be discussed with the people who determine our life quality,” Bedell says.
2. Emphasis on technology
“We’ve seen glimpses of moving into the Age of Aquarius [in 2020], as we’ve become less reliant on traditional structures, like going into an office from nine to five, and more reliant on technology and flexibility to progress,” says astrologer Alex Caiola of High Priestess of Brooklyn. “This has really positive connotations, like being able to instantly benefit from collective information or connect with those in far-away lands. And [it also has] not-so-great implications, like what’s outlined in The Social Dilemma: ‘If you don’t pay for the product, you are the product.’”
Therein lies the conflict with deepening our affection with and reliance on technology: The Age of Aquarius presents an opportunity to be more connected than ever through digital means, but it’ll be interesting to see how people will interact post-pandemic. Our pitfall could be becoming even more disengaged with the world around us.
3. Economic disruption
Saturn in Aquarius square Uranus in Taurus may mean a few pain points for the year ahead, given that Caiola says the transit has historically meant economic strife. “As we look back in history, this particular transit has implications of major economic disruption as an Aquarian Saturn rules connective structures, like banks and large scale financial institutions, which brings tension to Taurean Uranus, indicating loss of personal wealth,” she says, adding that this transit hit during March and April of 2020, and we all know how that went down. It also hit a few times in 1929, during the Great Depression. So you know, big yikes. Huge.
Key dates for this transit include February 17, June 14, and December 24, 2021. With that in mind, guard your assets, hang on tight, and try to look forward to what might be next. “What we did see after the Great Depression is an era of rebuilding and restructuring, leading to a prosperous time,” Caiola says. “History may repeat itself so frequently because we humans need to evolve. But as the saying goes, ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.’ Perhaps sh*t always needs to hit the fan for us to recognize the need for revolution.”
4. Community care
Astrologer and tarot-card reader Maria Sofia Marmanides echoes that the intent of Saturn squaring Uranus is to dismantle the antiquated structures and rebuild something better—that everyone can enjoy together. “There’s a huge potential for progress and shifting paradigms to make these structures work more equitably for everyone,” she says. “With such a heavy focus on Aquarius, the astrology tells us that we have work to do if we want to make a more just society. That work also includes reminding ourselves that progress looks different to various groups of people, and we all need to work together to make the status quo something that benefits everyone.”
What we can surmise, then, is that the beginning of the Age of Aquarius in 2021 will only usher in the beginning of the widespread healing that’s still to come. We might see the rise of more social programs and a bigger emphasis on taking care of one another. Wellness for all is the very spirit of the Age of Aquarius, and that means even with dark days still ahead, there’s something truly magnificent on the horizon.