It was someone named José Arguelles who first described 2012 as the time we would take what he called the leap beyond technology. In his 1987 book The Mayan Factor, he told us that the 13th baktun of the Mayan long-count calendar would be ending on the winter solstice of 2012, personally starting the whole obsession with that date. A baktun is 144,000 days; 13 baktuns add up to about 1.8 million days, or 5,125 years, which is one-fifth of a full precessional cycle (that is, the cycle of all 12 “ages” in Western astrology).
Over the past 25 years, predictions of both doomsday and spontaneous enlightenment have flooded New Age literature and bled into mainstream thought, though in all of that time, none of it has struck me as particularly meaningful. Said another way, I’ve hardly ever heard a 2012 narrative I could even vaguely relate to. Pretty much everyone knows that 2012 is an important date in the Mayan calendar, but hardly anyone can tell you what it “means” without drifting into speculation.
Our sin-obsessed Christian culture, clouded by truly horrid visions from The Book of Revelation (sometimes called The Apocalypse of John)—the last book of the New Testament—always seems to be waiting on doomsday. However, Judgment Day is our shit, not that of the ancient Mayans.
Arguelles got things going with the Harmonic Convergence of August 16-17, 1986, a global meditation for peace. I took part in a major event as part of a spiritual community, and it had nothing to do with the “end of the world” or doomsday. To the contrary, we had our minds on getting the world out of the mess that it was in, not into a bigger one. In recent years, Mayan scholars and Mayan leaders have objected to the obsession with gloom and cataclysm.
“For the ancient Maya, it was a huge celebration to make it to the end of a whole cycle,” says Sandra Noble, executive director of the Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies in Crystal River, Florida. To render December 21, 2012, as a doomsday event or moment of cosmic shifting, she says, is “a complete fabrication and a chance for a lot of people to cash in.”
The Western Astrology of the 2012 Era
That said, 2012 is going to be one of the most significant years that any of us have ever lived through. It’s really an era that spans from 2011 to 2016, and in truth it extends much further in both of the commonly known directions of time. Yet one year from today, we will note that 2012 was indeed a radical turning point. The Western astrology illustrates sweeping changes in culture and geopolitics, and corresponding profound changes in the lives of individuals. Most of the planets involved in the alignments were not known to the ancient Mayans—among them, Chiron, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto, all of which were discovered by modern science.
These are the gods of change, and for the next few years they are working in concert with one another, propelling us to wake up, pay attention, and consciously advance our lives. While some will experience this as little other than a wild ride, we are being summoned to participate in existence as a personal event—and as a collective event. Yet that statement calls attention to what it would mean not to participate: to merely observe, to decline participation on the basis of fear, or to attempt to stay stuck in old ways of thinking. If you’re experiencing fear and chaos rather than a bold quest, then it’s time to update your files.
Collectively, we have arrived at a point of extreme contraction of awareness, denial, paranoia, and surrender of our power. We are being smothered in our own technology. If we don’t do something about this, global conditions will get worse. It would be fair to say that we’ve arrived at a moment of potentially reclaiming what we’ve given up, and perhaps of claiming something new, but it won’t come in the form of an iPhone app.
The astrology you’re about to experience is a calling to personal responsibility and, most significant, to use what we have learned in all these years of study, workshops, yoga classes, many efforts at healing, self-improvement, and personal growth that have become so popular since the 1960s. Now is when we put the pieces together, with a momentous feeling; we are indeed at a point of no return, whether we’re talking about the environment, civil liberties, or going beyond paralyzing fear and judgment.
In short, it’s now time to decide what matters the most, and take action. Not in the future—right now. Here are the top five events that illustrate the changes. Each of them influences you personally. To learn out more about how that works, visit www.PlanetWaves.net/2012. The following will give you an overview.
Uranus Square Pluto
Look to the defining aspect of our era in history, Uranus square Pluto when you’re trying to figure out how it’s possible that Arab Spring, the labor movements of Wisconsin and Ohio, and the Occupy movement all happened within a few months. There are many factors that make 2011 distinct in modern history, and 2011 was just the beginning. When Uranus and Pluto get together, we enter an epoch of revolution. The way that revolutionary movements start is that individual people stir to awareness, notice something, feel a need to participate, and then join forces. Uranus square Pluto combines the revolutionary nature of Uranus with the evolutionary power of Pluto, and focuses them into a powerful force for renewal and change. The last time experienced anything like this was in the mid-1960s, when Uranus and Pluto were in a conjunction. Now that cycle is about to reach the exact first-quarter point, where we can put the many lessons of the ‘60s to work for us. By lessons, I mean the many beautiful opportunities that era teased us with, and the many disasters we witnessed.
Venus Transit of the Sun
One of the rarest predictable events in astronomy, this is a precise conjunction of Venus and the Sun—so close that if you’re in the right place, with the right equipment, you will be able to watch Venus trace a line across the Sun. In astronomy, this is the most Mayan thing about 2012, because the Mayan astronomers and lore masters loved the cycles of Venus. Venus’s transit of the Sun is about expression of the solar feminine—that is, the side of the feminine that is not reflected light but rather direct light. Said another way, the Sun becomes Venus for a little while in 2012. Taking place in Gemini, this suggests we can begin to experience ourselves as more balanced in our masculine and feminine attributes. Most of the conflict that humanity experiences (and by that I mean war, torture, and greed) has its deepest roots in sex, gender, and homophobia. It is the combination of repression, inner division, and fear of self that I believe leads to our tolerance of the violence we witness and experience. For those who are interested, we are approaching a rare, concentrated opportunity for emotional integration and gender balance.
Planets in the Water Signs
In 2010 Chiron began its ingress into Pisces (coinciding with the BP oil spill), arriving to stay in 2011 (this lasts till 2019). Last year, Neptune visited Pisces briefly, and takes up residence in February. It will remain in Pisces for about 14 years. In October Saturn arrives in Scorpio. These water placements describe at least two things: our global water crisis, and our emotional maturity crisis. It’s no coincidence that in many places the drinking water is contaminated with Prozac. That’s because many communities drink “purified” sewage effluent—something that will become increasingly necessary as time goes on. Emotionally, as a society we’re not doing much better, as we drown our sorrows at Walmart and drink the somewhat less purified effluent of our parents and other ancestors. These important planets in the water signs—especially Neptune, the god of oceans—point to a get-real moment of emotional healing, and indicate that our emotions are the heart of the matter where growth is concerned. They remind us that water is the heart of the matter where sustaining our bodies is concerned. The quality of the groundwater, rivers, and oceans connects to our emotional state. Enough oil spills, nuclear meltdowns, and fracking. It’s time to grow up.
Mercury Retrograde on Election Day
If you thought the 2010 election was crazy, and if you’ve been following the race for the Republican primary this year, just wait for the actual 2012 election. We live in an era when voter rights are being systematically narrowed down (for students, the elderly and the poor). The 2010 Citizens’ United case has opened the floodgates to politics being a wholly owned subsidiary of corporate America. During the past six months we have been treated to a slate of candidates who cannot identify China as a nuclear power, who want to shut federal agencies they cannot name, who think gay people can be “cured,” who want the smaller, less invasive government to regulate every uterus, who want to eliminate entire circuits of the federal courts and drag judges before Congress, and who have racked up more sexual harassment and cheating than—okay, I will shut up! Here is my point. Mercury stations retrograde on Election Day 2012. The only other election day in American history when a Mercury retrograde was exactly involved was 2000. We are looking at the potential for some huge scam or something really weird, like an electoral college tie. As far as I can tell, we’re about to go post politics. We need to create something functional in its place.
Stardate 22.214.171.124.0: The End of the 13th Baktun
The Mayan cycle that got the whole conversation going is the X-factor in the equation. Obviously it is significant that a 144,000 day cycle is turning over, particularly involving some of the people who occupied the Americas long before the Europeans arrived. Yet there has been more speculation as to the meaning of this event than there has been grounded creative discussion. We are fast approaching the point where the culture that grew out of the European colonies is simply unsustainable but seems on the verge of collapse. This may be more of a synchronicity than a prediction on the part of the ancient Mayans, but their calendar is all about synchronicity. Certainly, something is changing in the nature of time and how we experience it. Technology does seem to be at the heart of core of the situation. Remember that when José Arguelles was coming up with his ideas about the path beyond technology, nobody had a computer in their pocket. Most people had never even (ever) worked on a computer, much less had several of them in their house.
In Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsh, there is a warning. I think of it as the Atlantis passage, and I’ve quoted it a few times before. “As I have said, this isn’t the first time your civilization has been at this brink,” God tells Walsh. “I want to repeat this, because it is vital that you hear this. Once before on your planet, the technology you developed was far greater than your ability to use it responsibly. You are approaching the same point in human history again. It is vitally important that you understand this. Your present technology is threatening to outstrip your ability to use it wisely. Your society is on the verge of becoming a product of your technology rather than your technology being a product of your society. When a society becomes a product of its own technology, it destroys itself.”
Read more from Eric Francis Copplino at www.planetwaves.net.