There is a running joke amongst elderly people that, when you wake up in the morning without feeling any aches or pains, you have probably died in your sleep. This can also be said about those claiming that 2020 has not affected them at all. Those rare individuals who make such claims should perhaps check their pulse to make sure they are still alive, because it is almost impossible to have escaped the ramifications of this perplexing year. For most of us, it was a disruptive and unsettling year, causing all sorts of ‘aches and pains’. Instead of just taking it in our stride, it may be useful to take note of and reflect on what specific ‘aches and pains’ have showed up in our lives and to remedy that. Much like an X-ray, which indicates even the faintest bone fractures, the 2020 X-ray machine has relentlessly exposed the cracks in our relationships, the shadow side of our personalities, our deepest fears and uncertainties, and our often rather flimsy spiritual foundations. In general, it has rattled our cages. We were blown out of whatever comfort zone we were in. In essence, it was a year of purification and stripping away. For many of us, it felt like we were walking through fire, and the year left us feeling exhausted, depleted, anxious, bruised, battered, broken, and even bitter.
But why? Why do we have to go through this? What is going on?
Let us zoom out first and look for an answer in the sky. Every 2160 years, Earth moves into a new zodiac cycle, and this process is called the precession of the equinox. The precession of the equinox is a twelve-handed clock, much like the clock you see on the wall. The twelve numbers are the constellations of the zodiac, also known as ’star signs’. This clock moves over a very long time span. One period (or hour) takes roughly 2160 years, before it moves into the next constellation. After 2160 years, the period that is now drawing to a close on this clock is the Age of Pisces; the symbol of Pisces is a fish, and we all know that it also happens to be the symbol of Christianity. The Age of Pisces was also the age of the patriarchy and male dominance, large corporates, materialism, profit at all cost, urbanisation, and loss of community life. People became affluent but desperately lonely.
As we now enter the next phase, the Age of Aquarius, things are starting to change and we can already see signs of that. The rise of the feminine, more women in leadership positions, an intolerance for blatant materialism, and a push-back against discrimination. There is a growing distrust in political leaders, and a demand to put power back into the hands of the people. There is a revolt against the widening gap between the haves and the have-nots. Green living, organic food, artisan baking, cooking and crafts, respect for all forms of life, joining a community, and a concerted effort to live more simply so that more people can simply live, are all busy trending.
But there is also a more transcendent reason why this is happening. We are, symbolically speaking, being offered an opportunity to pass through the eye of the needle. From a mythological perspective, the ‘Eye of the Needle’ serves as a threshold crossing, a gateway into an enlightened space. It requires those of us seeking entrance to the walled ‘treasure house of the soul’ to shed our ego baggage, to be humble enough, and light enough, to pass through the gate, and move towards a new state of consciousness. As foretold long ago, we are heading for a new heaven and a new earth that offers a more enlightened way of living. That is exactly what the Age of Aquarius is all about.
One day, we will look back and be grateful for the year 2020, which pruned and prepared us for this new chapter in the history of humanity.
“Trials don’t come to take what you have, they come to supply what you lack”
― Emmanuel Igunbor