the Key & 4th Fundamental

The Seven Ray Cycles

Occult Cosmology

Science of the Antahkarana & Ray Words of Power

Esoteric Astrology

Commentary on
Zodiacal Meditations

72 Faces of Man
Complete Text


On the Ordinary Wheel

January 20th to February 19th

And the Word said:
Let desire in form be the rule


First decan            Venus             January 20th to February 1st

Second decan       Mercury           February 1st to 10th

Third decan          Saturn              February 10th to 19th

Please read the prefatory material before investigating your own Decanate Stage, as proper assignment is required. i.e., your birth date does not indicate the stage of development, rather, you must employ a subjective recognition of the state of consciousness (point of advance along the Path of Initiation) which you, or another, has achieved.

See this note on determining the decanate.


Step One: Physical Man

January 20th to February 1st


Treading upon the clockwise Wheel and entering the sign of Aquarius from right to left the decan rulers are Venus in the first, Mercury in the second and Saturn in the third. Under the rulership of Venus in the physical decan of Aquarius both substance and the imprisoned human soul begin to work together with mutual tolerance.

Under Mars in the first decan of both Aries and Pisces the situation is quite the reverse, for there bondage in substance and captivity in relationship is the key theme. The goal of the soul is to attain a state of self-conscious living. At this early point in the career of the incarnated soul, Egoic consciousness is entirely latent within the form and the mundane Aquarian cannot possibly even dream of the soul or the sense of exalted power which soul control brings.

The symbol of Aquarius is the Water Bearer, the sign of man. Consequently in the pure unmodified type there are no animal traits or bestial characteristics to single them out. Under the beneficent influence of Venus the physical appearance is well proportioned, pleasing and moderate.

Water Bearers are usually tall and slender with narrow hips and long legs. The calves of the legs are very nicely shaped and formed with beautiful ankles which are strong and well turned. The feet are also strong, well formed and graceful with high arches. There is a blending of secondary sexual traits so there are a lot of crossovers between the sexes. They have a unisex look, so if the hair happens to be long, from behind it is difficult to tell one sex from the other.

There is harmony and symmetry in the figure and in the facial features, especially in the proportions and shape of the eyes, nose, chin and lips. Typically the face is oval and long with flat planes, while the skull is broad in proportion to its length. The nose is not extreme, being neither too long nor too short, neither too thin nor broad.

The Aquarian often has large, lively, luminous, benevolent eyes beaming with kindness, humanitarian and quick with apprehension and understanding. It should not come as a surprise to learn that many great movie stars—the most famous and well-known faces in the world—are born under Venus in Aquarius. The most beautiful blue eyes in the world belong to those born in the physical decan of this sign.

In the early stages under Venusian rulership the unevolved possess little power of concentration and are slow-minded, with poor memories. They can be decidedly stupid, biased, easily puzzled, bewildered and deplorably shortsighted. The practical details of a situation are lost in a general haziness.

At the initial stage they do not know even where, why, or how to begin. Naive opinions are formed and expressed out of bewildered speculation. They are easily astonished. Vacillating, wavering and missing opportunities, they fritter away a good deal of time and energy. They have a lamentable lack of common sense. Close-minded and tainted with prejudice, they are naturally superstitious. They have no idea how to adapt available means to any end in view. However they do characteristically display a friendliness, interest and natural courtesy towards others. They have a tranquil temperament, are gentle and kindly in nature, and tend to try and maintain peace at any price. Neither militant nor aggressive, they are inclined to be both moral and physical cowards.

The Aquarian is flurried and bewildered by the arrival of any enemy and when finally cornered, possesses no inner resources beyond some cherished conviction and can only hit out clumsily and blindly, lost in the confusion of the moment. Attaining balance and self-control by avoidance of foolish extremes remains a life-long goal as the unevolved type blunders without tact into physical experiences of all sorts.

Venus increases the urge for material objects, for that which is beautiful and will provide security and comfort. Selfish and superficial activity dedicated to the service of the personality and the form side of life in general is the initial goal. The self identifies with the material world and the form aspect to such an extent that there is no sense of duality. The form life apparently constitutes all that there is.

From a deeper subjective level the rulership of Venus in the physical decan indicates that desire for the form life is the motivating force driving the soul into incarnation. The exoteric process associated with the first step in Aquarius is marked by dark experiences, preoccupation with the physical form and sexual relations, often with attendant problems such as illness and disease. The preoccupation with the consciousness of the form life and thus with self-preservation, self-enrichment and self-consciousness, predominates for a very long cycle of lifetimes.

Venus does produce beautiful forms, thus as we enter this sign for the next world period great emphasis is placed upon developing, beautifying and refining the physical body; in fact a new physical culture is emerging.

Under Venus, advanced physical man will eventually arrive at the stage of self-conscious living. Initially however, the enhancement process of the physical decan demonstrates itself through the difficulties of the unstable and undeveloped mind. The Venusian influence enhances the development of belief systems and ideals but without any true mental understanding, as the intellect itself is still embryonic. This is the purely non-thinking instinctual stage.

After many lifetimes the Water Bearer becomes increasingly magnetic and will eventually attract the energy of higher and more dynamic planes than the physical. This will intensify certain of the personality forces and supplement the life activities by an increasingly steady inflow of energy. In Aquarius the incarnated soul must awaken to the beauty of the individual life with self-interest and self-responsibility, and begin to expend its energies in the service of the personality.


Step Two: Emotional Man

February 1st to 10th


In the central decan Mercury subjects the emotionally unevolved Aquarian to the vicissitudes of constant conflict, struggle and instability. Mercury's stimulation fosters the growth of many cherished illusions. The inherent dual nature of Aquarius is accentuated by the natural dualism of Mercury, which makes the central decan a versatile and volatile arena of experience. Here the Aquarian travels the hills and valleys of emotional experience, periods of self-deprecation and the depths of depression alternating with exhilaration and excitement.

Through the processes of constant and ceaseless unrest and struggle, eventually harmony and rhythm are produced. This will finally lead to the development of sensitive fluidity of psychic response, though definitely not in the early stages. Continual adjustments are made in the area of personal desire and the various forms and expressions it assumes on the physical plane. The highs and lows of emotional experience serve to round out and develop the sentient faculty, enabling the Aquarian to interrelate all facets of life experience.

The Mercurial characteristics of the emotional body result in a certain isolation and loneliness as far as intimate affections are concerned, for they are easily betrayed into allowing their affections to wander. This is characteristically accentuated by a real restiveness and consequent incapacity for long-term friendship and intimacy. They lack a sense of personal loyalty. They do however crave personal appreciation and attention. Under Mercury usually the memory is not good and imagination is lacking. Tactless point-blank questions about the feelings, actions and opinions of others are common. They lack trust in other people but study them closely, particularly scrutinizing their emotional reactions.

The emotional life is tumultuous, stormy, fluid and a source of bewilderment. As the intuition which penetrates the veil is undeveloped these types often feel emotionally puzzled, perplexed and disappointed and are often left in speculation and confused astonishment. Their affections are not the intense devotional type but more scattered with a general tendency to be equally at the disposal of all. There can be no expression of real emotional affection on the part of the unevolved Aquarian until a sense of personal esteem is developed which extends right down to the foundation of the character.

The unevolved type looks at life problems from the outside and not from the center, therefore they lack the ability to solve them efficiently and effectively. Sensitivity to more subtle types of emotional impression is as yet lacking, and they have not yet truly learned the power of love, therefore they lack faith to carry themselves through the dark and difficult times of crisis.

In the heat of argument it may appear that point after point is yielded to the adversary, as the main intention of the Aquarian is simply to end all argument and avoid trouble. When the emotional atmosphere is once again calm and clear they will be found exactly where they were before, with the same breadth of vision, not narrowed or restricted by any imposed constraints.

Recessive aspects of the Mercury ruled emotional body include lack of confidence and composure, worry, agitation, excessive moodiness, unpredictability, unreliability, over eagerness for compromise, moral cowardice, unregulated passions, inertia, indolence, procrastination, vacillation, unstable activity patterns, exaggeration, ambivalence and embroilment in constant conflict and turmoil.

The rulership of Mercury indicates that without self-control and balance the Aquarian's freedom is restricted and they remain bound. Unwise action, deficient emotional capacity and apparently overwhelming handicaps such as insanity, criminality or drug addiction compel the less evolved individual to remain imprisoned.

The Aquarian's disconcerting departures from precedent are the result of the stimulation of Mercury. They are famous for going their own way, ignoring conventional wisdom or authority and therefore meeting with a great deal of social criticism and hostility. Their conduct is often eccentric or outrageous, especially when the emotional body is ill-disciplined. They make amazing and unaccountable decisions, generally accompanied by extremely peculiar behavior as they lack sufficient balance and self-control to avoid foolish extremes.

Their emotional growth and development proceeds in harmony under its own impetus and following its own laws, which however, are not those most respected or revered and upheld by the general community. Thus they are inclined to defy public opinion and are often in the public eye in one capacity or another. They may experience both the favor and disfavor of the general public. In any case the career history of an Aquarian individual is a stormy one.

Emotionally developed types dive straight into the waters of life facing them fearlessly, however appalling they may appear to be. The emotionally mature Aquarian is gifted with a full-spectrum, exciting, multi-colored approach to living and abhors narrowmindedness, boredom and monotony. Mercury indicates that the attainment of emotional growth is a dynamic process and the task of attaining and preserving harmony and balance calls for constant adjustments in the immediacy of the moment. They have the gift of common sense and the earnest desire and ability to struggle along even in very restricted spaces and circumstances.

Mercury may lead them along lonely paths and over rough and stony ground, but ever draws them to new heights of personal vision and self-esteem. Ultimately they gain simplicity and sincerity of feeling, but real emotional development is achieved only when the attitude of the truth-seeker is coupled with the habits of the student. They will develop an extremely tolerant perspective, showing courteous impartiality to all.

The emotionally evolved type has a sentimental tenderness and cherishing attitude which leads them to actively and energetically offer comfort and aid to those around them. Under Mercury the emotional apparatus eventually unfolds, expands and grows to become far-reaching, ultimately extending friendships to all nations and people of the world regardless of race, language and background.

The sorrows and suffering of humanity weigh heavily upon them, at times to such a paralyzing extent that they become truly dejected in spirit. They will take on any amount of trouble to help others, and are willing contributors to groups and activities which serve to ameliorate the suffering of mankind. They may take great satisfaction in devising amusements, games, social and sporting events, simple healthful activities, entertainments and pleasures for others. They crave the completeness or the well-roundedness that comes from new experiences with other people.

Developed Aquarians always benefit from full participation in groups and grow as a result of the investment of their personal energies towards the resolution of any personal or interpersonal crisis or struggle. They innately sense that each crisis has something vital to offer, thus they subject themselves fully to the tearing process generated by working through competing alternatives. These individuals are inclusive by nature and are active in making adjustments which will harmonize and blend all elements within any given situation.

Emotionally adept at helping all members of any group feel adjusted to each other, they make those little accommodations which eliminate the personality frictions that would otherwise cause fragmentation, antagonism, dissonance and discordance. They learn to mix the highs and lows and many aspects of experience together in order to establish right relationship between themselves and others. Applying their gifted sensitivities to every life situation and to interpersonal relationships, the successful result of their life-long struggle is the creation of beautiful experiences. Consecrating their highly developed feelings and imaginations to the art of living beautifully, they evoke beauty in their environment and their relationships.

The strengths of the Aquarian emotional disposition include a facility for bringing harmony out of conflict, an ability to make peace, a capacity to reconcile, compromise, mediate and bridge. The Aquarian under Mercury has a love of beauty, a strong imagination, a love of color and music, a strong sense of drama and an ability to amuse, delight and entertain. They are known for their spontaneity, their ability to improvise, and for their fighting spirit.

They have a natural feeling for the arrangement of patterns of color and for melody because under Mercury the emotional body possesses a natural sensitivity to the juxtaposition of contrasting vibrational frequencies. This natural ability is what enables them to develop a rapport with many kinds of people from a variety of backgrounds and experiences. Nevertheless even for a mature and developed Aquarian, the achievement of emotional balance and harmony is never an easy thing and neither is it achieved in a straightforward manner because it involves the mutual reconciliation and attunement of many opposite, dualistic or antagonistic factors. But when the motive is truly one of harmony and peace, eventually all the conflicts met along the way are worked through and adjusted.

These Aquarians then not only bring harmony out of their many personal afflictions and conflicts but they become transformers of the wider environment, creating beauty out of ugliness in the worlds of business and social relations. Definitely creative and expressive, they begin to sense the world of meaning and intuit the inner life of the soul. They are inspired to embody and express meaning through definite forms of creative endeavor. Therefore they have a talent for enlivening situations, thrive on the unexpected, love that which is new and become quite wonderful at keeping other people alert and forward-looking into the future.


Step Three: Mental Man

February 10th to 19th


Saturn forces the personality of man to think things through, and although incorrect conclusions may be drawn, the inevitable stimulation of the mental faculties is an ultimate good.

Under Saturn the Aquarian learns through experience of pain, discomfort, depression, conflict, loss and vice to eventually analyze the processes of the physical plane correctly and choose a path according to a system of values. The semi-educated Aquarian looks back to the past, remaining attached to old ways and reactionary methods. New truths are rejected. They prefer conformity or obedience to some known and imposed authority, finding any form of self-imposed obedience impossible to achieve. They have an intolerance of individuality and lack originality. In fact they are initially afraid of the emerging sense of their own individuality because it might not conform to the socially sanctioned pattern, the fulfilment of which guarantees social approval, support and security.

Saturn's rulership accounts for the close likeness between mentally polarized Capricorns and Aquarians. Both work well together in business, law firms, accounting offices, country clubs or at any type of mundane social event. Both are deeply entrenched in maintaining and excelling in the exoteric status quo.

At the relatively early stage of mental evolution the Saturnian type is an "earthbound soul" (EA, p.333) totally immersed in materialism and preoccupied with the physical elements. The self identity of the mundane mental type is derived from an outer form or through the function of some ritualism or ceremonialism rather than from communion with the inner pattern of being.

Their consciousness is externalized in the limited world of physical objects. Certainly they do not concern themselves with anything they consider to be vague or insubstantial. Bound to their physical plane perceptions, they make superficial judgments based upon appearances. In the early stages of mental development the Aquarian has no aptitude for searching deeply into the nature of things, therefore subjects are treated superficially due to the inability to penetrate the veil of glamour. They are intent upon tangible accomplishment and concerned to find the best possible way of doing something, and once they have discovered it they will never vary that method. They like definitely structured sequences of activity designed to obtain certain predictable results. The uneducated or semi-educated man or women with little knowledge or life experience is quite helpless and confused in emergencies, and the mind is certainly not rapid in reaction to new situations and circumstances.

The less-evolved Aquarian thinker cannot yet recognize the divine intelligence with which they are gifted. As a group they are marked by intolerance, confusion, perplexity, inaccuracy and misguided conscience. They can be decidedly absentminded, vague, disordered, devious, deceitful, untruthful, chaotic, manipulative, calculating and overly critical. They erect barriers of sectarianism, bigotry, superficial thought, separativeness, isolation and prejudice to keep people apart on the basis of race, sex, social class, education or caste. The limiting forces of selfish satisfaction and selfish exclusiveness motivate the mundane mind. They are subservient to habit, regulations and the "dead letter" of the law, abide by rigid routines and are over-concerned with rules. They maintain a rigid orderliness and formalism that is inclined towards crystallization. Their recessive mental qualities include egotism, excessive pride, arrogance, willfulness, hardness, cruelty, love of control, suppression, inhibition, obstinacy and a tendency towards domination and anger.

Saturn inevitably brings chaos and trouble to unenlightened minds. The tests of the mental decan develop the ability to overcome difficult and painful situations without becoming exhausted or defeated. Nothing new can emerge if the individual is unwilling to bear the painful sense of disorientation and temporary chaos. Through Saturn conflict supervenes, producing a dividing of the ways and offering the opportunity to choose the way of higher inclination over the physical path of least resistance.

The enhancement of Saturn's power in this decan eventually creates a competent mind adequate to deal with emergency or crisis situations. The force of Saturn helps the mind to direct, unify and synthesize the personality. The evolved thinker has a mind of their own and believes in personal freedom and the right to know. They are often characterized by the ability to think for themselves to the extent that they revolt from acquiescence to authority. Aquarians must move beyond excessive conformity and also beyond merely reactive rebellion. They must learn to temper themselves with a natural discretion and to receive new ideas openly.

In the Saturn decan the mind becomes deliberate; not rash or foolish. Aquarians must often overcome an excess of perfectionism, but by the apex of the third step they have gained the capacity to manage detail, coordinate groups and to synthesize. They have a deep understanding of the relativity of human relations.

The advanced mental type has wide tolerant views on all human issues. A real sincerity and gravity of thought is expressed with calmness, practicality, moderation and conviction. Opinions are no longer given in an explosive or eccentric manner. Rather with a singular felicity of thought and a pleasant optimism they delight in informing others upon subjects of sincere interest to well-educated minds.

Abstract thinking and a gifted ability to theorize and speculate are natural talents. They love rigorous analysis and reasoning, and possess an acute and powerful intellect of immense fertility and creativity. They can understand and explain complex patterns and trends, and have great facility with language and communication. Writers are gifted in the art of adorning their subject matter poetically and with a decorative flourish.

Evolved Aquarians are much valued in business for their ability to plan, organize, strategize, build, renovate, transform and create order. They understand economy and how to be economical and therefore handle money well. Money takes on many complicated forms, and keeping track of its behavior on the stock market or through numerous other financial organizations and instruments requires a high degree of mental sophistication and a gift for abstraction sufficient to identify trends and patterns in a flux of changing values.

Changing conditions and values require fresh strategies, and some new opportunities or advantages always arise from the continual flux of market trends and shifting circumstances. The principle of relativity is found at the heart of finance and economy because the value of goods and services is always in a state of fluctuation.

The Saturnian mind has the inherent capacity to understand the value of money and its complex and fluid energy interrelations, therefore the field of economics is well suited to the Aquarian in this decan. Able to oversee and intelligently coordinate the details of a complex enterprise with expedient management, the executive works tirelessly to stay abreast of all the latest developments.

They have a superior talent for knowing exactly what to do and the most efficient way of doing it. They are intelligently flexible and adaptable, never at a loss or taken by surprise, and adept at avoiding being pinned down. Money is an energy which facilitates the materialization of desires, and those who control money in our society control the processes of physical plane living.

Eventually the Aquarian becomes philanthropic, amassing and giving away large sums of money in support of deserving causes. The philanthropist through the intelligent distribution of money makes it possible for others to fulfil their desires and transform their hopes, wishes and dreams into physical plane realities.

During the final stages of the third step the individual begins to dedicate tremendous efforts to the soul. Only then can the advanced mind begin to create revolution within the thoughtforms of a society and establish new principles of some epoch-making importance. As the soul gains active control of the mind, the disciple is prepared for an interlude of crisis and re-orientation whereby he will transfer to the Fixed Cross, reverse the zodiacal Wheel and truly become a spiritual entity.

At this point the Aquarian is becoming aware of the deeper significance of human sorrow and misfortune, and through suffering will eventually become whole, unified and fulfilled.





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