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The Transition to the New Age
by Dane Rudhyar, 1969

First published under the title
Birth Patterns for
a New Humanity

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   Where Do We Stand Today?
     Page 1
     Page 2
   Structure vs. Content
     Page 3
     Page 4
   Astrology and History
     Page 5
     Page 6
   The Earth Foundation
     Page 7
   Astrological Cycles
     Page 8

    1. Three Centuries of Crisis
    2. Planetary Cycles
    3. Cycles of Relationship

    4. Stars, Constellations and Signs of the Zodiac
    5. From Buddha to Christ
    6. The Structure of the Piscean Age
    7. At the Gates of the New Age
    8. The Aquarius-Leo Age

    9. The Zodiacal Earth-Field
  10. As We Face the Future



Structure vs. Contents
The concept of cycles makes little sense, in terms of any broad cosmological picture of existence, unless we differentiate clearly between structure and contents. This concept refers to the structure of the vast flow of existence, but not of the contents of this flow. Existence is a process of unceasing changes. But man has realized for many millennia that the forever changing events which affect his senses and the organic rhythms of his body and psyche display certain definable patterns of recurrence which make the events yet to come to some extent predictable. What is predictable, however, is not the total existential situation including all perceptible or conceivable events in the world, but only certain configurations or gestalts relative to special sets of events isolated by the mind from the total picture of existence.
      This is a very important statement which obviously cannot be verified in any absolute sense, but which is at the very root of man's experience of existence. When we speak of cyclic processes in nature, we are isolating definite sets of events the pattern of which recur. For instance, we speak of a lunation cycle because every so many days we observe a recurrence of the new moon and full moon in a particular relationship to the horizon i. e. a full moon always rises in the east when the sun sets in the west. But while there are recurrences of full moons, these full moons change their position with reference to the stars. Moreover as each full moon recurs it throws its lights on events and situations on the earth's surface which are never the same. Likewise we can expect and safely predict the return of spring, but no two springs occur under exactly the same weather conditions and bring into identical living organisms the same chemicals.
      in other words, events never repeat themselves exactly; and history never repeats exactly the same events. The beginnings and ends of every solar year, of every century, of the great cycle of precession of equinoxes (approximately every 26,000 years) occur in always different regions of the galaxy, which itself has brought its billions of solar systems and stars to ever-new regions of cosmic space. What this means is that you can never speak of two identical events in the existential sense of the term, event, simply because the infinitely complex network of relationships between all "existents" whether they be solar systems, human persons, molecules or atomic particles can never be precisely the same; unless we choose to believe that the potentialities of existence and existential relations are finite. Such a belief, however, seems to run against every ingrained human expectation and practically against all that religions and philosophies have ever conceived. Whatever the term, God, may refer to, the fact is that whatever and whenever this term and its equivalent have been used by human consciousnesses, it has always been associated with the feeling and/or the concept of infinity. A Nietzschean type of totally repetitive "Eternal Return" would indeed be the negation of the God-idea. It would also be the total negation of meaning in human existence and of any possible freedom of choice for man.
      What repeats itself is not the event, but the pattern of relatively closed series of events with reference to a particular field of existence. In other words, the flow of everchanging events is an ordered and structured process. As an illustration let us consider a river. This river, seen in its totality from mountain spring to sea, has a characteristic structure which we can see on a map, and we give it a name; but the water itself, whose unceasing flow is normally contained within the structuring boundaries which the particular features of the land make for it, is never the same. The often quoted Zen saying that you can never bathe twice in the same river is untrue or at least confusing in its imprecision, as so many so-called mystical statements are. You can bathe in the same river, but not in the same water. The distinction is most important and far reaching in its implications.
      I can bow reverently before the sunrise everyday; but while it is correct to speak of the occurrence as "sunrise" i. e. as a formal configuration relating the sun, the earth, and the horizon of my place of residence everything at the existential level that participates in this sunrise scene differs each day in some degree. It is not actually the same sun, nor the same horizon, nor the same human organism though the mind within this organism may insist that the "I" is a permanent entity. What is permanent is a certain structure of living processes, a gestalt. The name is the same, but the existential reality of every sunrise scene differs in many ways.
      This factor of "structure" when generalized and abstractized, is actually what we mean by time that which can be measured by clocks which in turn work according to the motions of the earth (its axial revolution creating the "day," and its revolution around the sun creating the "year"). There can be no process without time; there can be no thinking or feeling (as we normally use these terms) without a time-sequence of events in our body. Whether the time-sequence seems to our consciousness fast or slow has nothing to do with the reality of time, in spite of the fashionable arguments to the contrary arguments based on an inaccurate or needlessly paradoxical use of words. And if the present scientific concept of the relativity of time with reference to the speed of an observer has any meaning at all, beside its convenient use in formal algebraic reasoning, this would involve a metaphysical concept of the universe which so far does not seem even to have been formulated.

By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1969 by Dane Rudhyar
and Copyright © 2001 by Leyla Rudhyar Hill
All Rights Reserved.

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