According to the Secret Wisdom Teaching we are standing at the beginning of a new age.1 Outside the Secret Wisdom Teaching this term refers specifically to the astrological age of Aquarius and more general to a wide spreading new (sub) culture of spiritual thought and living.2 The Secret Wisdom Teaching acknowledges both but mentions that the first is coupled by other occurrences and that the latter is (one of) the result(s) of the first (along with the aforementioned other occurrences).3 In this contemplation we shall have a closer look at the regarded occurrences inaugurating the new age.
Of the to be thematized occurrences inaugurating the new age is the factor of the incoming of Aquarius the best known as it is also acknowledged outside the Secret Wisdom Teaching. Aquarius is a constellation and that it is 'coming in' means astrologically that our sun is moving into the constellation of Aquarius and that we are thus coming into the influence of Aquarian energies.4 In this is Aquarius relieving Pisces, the constellation under which influence we have been for the last two thousand years.5 Where such a constellational age lasts for about two thousand years is the transition period estimated at five hundred years.6 Around 1937, the year when Alice Bailey's book 'From Bethlehem to Calvary' was published, already two hundred years of this transition period are mentioned to have passed,7 placing us at present thus just beyond the midway point of the transition period.
So we are leaving the Pisces and entering the Aquarius influences. Now Pisces is the sign of the mediating world savior,8, 9 and being a water sign it is closely related to the astral or emotional plane.10 Pisces is also considered as a sign of death.11 All these factors can be recognized in the life of Jesus Christ and Christianity and the Piscean age is thus also mentioned as the 'Christian age'.12 It is probably safe to summarize the age of Pisces as the age of emotional martyrdom for a (presumed) world saving medium.
Aquarius is an air sign13 and is thus related to the buddhic or intuitional plane,14 which is the plane of union or at-one-ment.15 This union however is not the union into a fundamental unity but a union into a group,16 (one could say into a unity in diversity).17 Thus in the coming age of Aquarius we may expect to see fusions, unions, synthesizes and group forming in all fields of human endeavor.18 It is this thought which makes people belonging to the new age (sub) culture so hopeful and expectant towards the future.
One type of occurrence coupling the leaving and incoming of the constellations of Pisces and Aquarius is the leaving and incoming of certain rays. The rays cannot be treated here elaborately. Very shortly it can be said that a ray can be understood as a qualifier imbibing everything under its influence with a certain quality.19 There are seven of such rays.20 They originate from the seven stars of the Great Bear, are each through three of the constellations brought into our solar system and express themselves through the seven planetary logoi of our solar system who again manifest these rays through their embodied seven sacred planets.21 Ray I, the ray of will or power, is at this moment not in manifestation on our planet. Ray II, the ray of love-wisdom, is in manifestation since the year 1575. Ray III, the ray of active intelligence, is in manifestation since 1425. Ray IV, the ray of harmony, beauty and art, will come into manifestation after 2025. Ray V, the ray of concrete knowledge or science, is in manifestation since 1775. Ray VI, the ray of devotion or of abstract idealism, is moving out of manifestation since 1625. Ray VII, the ray of ceremonial magic or order, is in manifestation since 1675.22, 23
In the Secret Wisdom Teaching is in reference to the new age especially attention given to the passing out of manifestation of the sixth ray and the coming into manifestation of the seventh ray. The sixth ray is related to the astral plane just like the constellation of Pisces, as we have seen.24 This means that Pisces and the sixth ray have enhanced each other's qualities greatly in the age we are now leaving.25 The devotion and abstract idealism of the sixth ray have enhanced the emotional martyrdom for a (presumed) world saving medium of Pisces, and the latter has done the same for the first.
Like Pisces is the sixth ray however rapidly losing influence and instead is the seventh ray gaining it. This ray is related to the etheric sub planes of the physical plane (though not to the dense physical plane to which the third ray is related).26 Combined with the unifying qualities of Aquarius are intuitional group unifications in ceremonial magic to be expected and also shall we see a greater human activity and awareness on the etheric levels. The Aquarian qualities can expected to be greatly enhanced when the fourth ray comes into manifestation, for like Aquarius is the fourth ray too related to the buddhic plane.27 Plenty of glances into the future of the coming new age can be found scattered throughout the Secret Wisdom Teaching but these shall not be enumerated in this short contemplation. Here only the very large lines are mentioned.
The etheric web acts as a separator between the astral and the dense physical body.28 This goes not only for humans but also for our planet.29 And this planetary etheric web is in process of being destroyed, and will continue to be further destroyed in the new age.30 Several causes are mentioned in the Secret Wisdom Teaching, whereby the possibility must be kept open that one cause may very well be the result of another. As a first cause can be mentioned the coming in of cosmic rays that constitute aspects of the planetary kundalini (analogous to the etheric web in humans being destroyed by the raising of the kundalini).31 Interestingly is in this regard the activity of the incoming seventh ray mentioned. A second mentioned cause regards the intensification of light on our planet since the discovery of electricity.32 Thirdly is the first world war mentioned which, through the power of its sound on the battlefields, has torn the etheric web asunder.33 Fourthly then is mentioned the use of atom bombs, which also disrupted the planetary etheric web.34 At the time of writing that remark (January 1945, published in 1955 in Discipleship in the New Age, Volume II) only three atom bombs had been brought to explosion. But testing of atom bombs has of course since then been going on in many places during the cold war.
As a result of the destruction of the planetary etheric web we may expect a blending of the astral with the physical world.35 This will result in the development in humanity of etheric vision,36 and the letting loose of psychic forces will on the one hand lead to more understanding, brotherhood and illumination37 and on the other hand to a(n initial) spread of disease, insanity, neurotic conditions and mental unbalance.38
Another important (and for humanity probably the most important) occurrence in the new age is the externalisation of the Hierarchy. The term 'Hierarchy' is in general used to refer to a group of beings working on inner planes on the evolutionary processes. As such may the term refer to the solar hierarchy but most often does the term refer to our planetary hierarchy.39 This latter hierarchy regards the fifth kingdom on the evolutionary ladder on our planet,40 (following the mineral, vegetable, animal and human kingdoms),41 and as such it is also known as 'the spiritual kingdom', 'the Kingdom of God'42 and 'the Kingdom of Souls'.43 Without elucidating their individual functions can the Hierarchy be said to consist of Sanat Kumara (or the Lord of the World, the Ancient of Days or the One Initiator), the three Kumaras (or the Buddhas of Activity), the Manu, the Bodhisattva (or the Christ or the World Teacher) and a number of masters.44 Because these workers on the inner planes work through their disciples45 are also initiates, disciples and probationers of the human kingdom included the overview of the Hierarchy. The latter can be seen as functioning as an intermediate group between the spiritual kingdom and the human kingdom.
So in the new age the hierarchy is externalising (and with the new age already in process of arriving has the process of externalisation of the Hierarchy too already begun). Hitherto the Hierarchy has worked from the inner world through disciples and initiates of the human kingdom who are placed in the outer world.46 With the externalisation process the masters and the Christ will however increasingly appear openly in the world.47 The results of this externalisation shall be the creating and vitalizing of a new world religion, the gradual reorganization of the social order, the public inauguration of the system of initiation and the exoteric training of disciples and of humanity.48
Above were four occurrences mentioned inaugurating the new age. They are the constellation change, the ray change, the destruction of the etheric web and the externalisation of the hierarchy. It was also mentioned that we are at this moment in a transition period and also that the tearing of the planetary etheric web is leading at the moment to certain unpleasant conditions. These unpleasant conditions however are not only caused by the tearing of the etheric web but by the whole of new influences and stimulations that humanity is undergoing in the present transition period. Now besides the already touched four occurrences there are still other influences mentioned causing problems in this time period. That these influences do cause problems in this time period does not necessarily mean however that they too inaugurate the new age. This distinction must be kept in mind.
Now the additional occurrences to be mentioned under this paragraph are not always extensively discussed in the Secret Wisdom Teaching and where they are shall in this contemplation still only a mentioning take place as the primary focus of this contemplation is laid on those occurrences inaugurating the new age.
Now the first occurrence causing problems during this transition period regards the welling up of magnetic force on Sirius effecting our solar system and especially our earth.49 A second regards a shift in the earth's polarity due to the pull of a great cosmic centre. This occurrence is responsible for many of the present earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. A third factor causing problems is the now rapid disintegration of our moon, effecting too terrestrial results. Fourth to mention is the cycle of our sun around the greater zodiac which was completed when our sun entered Pisces around two thousand years back. Because the transition period of this large, two hundred and fifty thousand years lasting cycle lasts for five thousand years we have not yet surpassed the troublesome effects of this transition period. Interestingly has our earth too completed a similar cycle, namely that around the lesser zodiac, lasting for twenty five thousand years.50 This occurrence (along with the incoming of Aquarius and the seventh ray) is enabling Sanat Kumara to take a cosmic initiation and for that he is rearranging humanity as a whole. This occurrence may thus probably be considered as also constituent of the inauguration of the new age.
Let us summarize and overview what has brought to the fore in this contemplation. We intended to have a closer look at the regarded occurrences inaugurating the new age and started out with the most familiar; that of the constellation change from Pisces to Aquarius. Less familiar were the ray changes. Special attention was given to the outgoing of the sixth ray and the incoming of the seventh ray. In the paragraph that followed it was uncovered that the incoming of the latter ray was (among other factors) related to the destruction of the planetary etheric web. Probably the most important occurrence however to inaugurate the new age was deemed the externalisation of the Hierarchy. All these occurrences were in the subsequent paragraph found to cause problems during the present transition period, and other causes, not necessarily inaugurating the new age, were mentioned too. May the recognition of these occurrences support our transition into the new age.
|"Ray I||Ray of Will or Power||1st Aspect|
|Ray II||Ray of Love-Wisdom||2nd Aspect|
|Ray III||Ray of Active Intelligence||3rd Aspect|
|These are the major Rays.|
|Ray IV||Ray of Harmony, Beauty and Art.|
|Ray V||Ray of Concrete Knowledge or Science.|
|Ray V||Ray of Devotion or of Abstract Idealism.|
|Ray VII||Ray of Ceremonial Magic or Order."|
|"Ray One||Not in manifestation.|
|*Ray Two||In manifestation since 1575 A.D.|
|*Ray Three||In manifestation since 1425 A.D.|
|Ray Four||To come slowly into manifestation after 2025 A.D.|
|*Ray Five||In manifestation since 1775 A.D.|
|Ray Six||Passing rapidly out of manifestation. It began to pass out in 1625 A.D.|
|*Ray Seven||In manifestation since 1675 A.D."|
|"Ray I||Will or Power||Plane of divinity.|
|Ray II||Love-Wisdom||Plane of the monad.|
|Ray III||Active Intelligence||Plane of spirit, atma.|
|Ray IV||Harmony||Plane of the intuition.|
|Ray V||Concrete Knowledge||Mental Plane.|
|Ray VI||Devotion, Idealism||Astral Plane.|
|Ray VII||Ceremonial Order||Physical Plane."|