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A Vision of the Aquarian Age
Sir George Trevelyan


First published in 1977 by Coventure UK and in 1984 by Stillpoint USA
This book is out-of-print, now available only on this website
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11  Apocalypse Now


OUR CULTURE IS obviously in a time of trouble. Many have foreseen breakdown in our economy, since a great technology obsessed with getting rich quickly is too clumsy and top-heavy, and altogether too inhuman in its values. Avarice leads to rivalry and competition, to the "law of the jungle", in other words, and this leads in turn to fear and conflict. In the mean time, ecologists are becoming aware of how delicately poised the living organism of the ecosphere is, and that our reckless exploitation of the earth's resources may well lead to retribution. And seers and adepts of the age, with their developed powers of intuition, foretell a great spiritual crisis or turning point for mankind by the end of the 20th Century. Twenty years remaining!

Our present difficulties may well be the overture before the ringing up of the curtain for the grand opera. It is therefore necessary to see current events and complexities in a broader context, as component skeins of an enormous canvas. It is too sanguine, too naive, to assume we can just patch things up and carry on. We must learn that merely getting more possessions and satisfying more desires and supposed wants is not the object of life. We shall have to simplify our lives drastically and be prepared to let go much that we now strive desperately to hold. Values and consciousness must change, not just tastes, manners, fashions, social structures or politics.

Most attempts to solve our problems are made from within the context of narrow materialistic philosophy. In such attempts, therefore, a critical factor is neglected, a factor which offers the potential of the most supreme hope man has ever conceived. This is the emergence of the broad cosmic view which recognises that we are all part of a living universe, shot through with creative spirit and made up of energies which permeate every part of it – energies imbued with intelligence and love. The earth must be seen as a living seed, rather than a fragment of dumb mineral in a vast mechanism of a dead universe. Higher intelligences do indeed exist, are very much concerned about the future of Planet Earth and may be contacted by human thinking. To put it another way, we may forget God, but He is not going to forget us.

We are now reaching the end of an age when, in the long evolution of consciousness, man can step beyond the limitations of ego-bound desire and expand his understanding. He can now achieve cosmic consciousness and blend with the breadth of spiritual being; but this cannot come about if he clings frantically to all his fancied material wants. Therefore, much must be jettisoned if the great next step is to occur. "Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish". As we have noted, the word "repent" did not originally carry the connotations of sin and guilt that it does today. It derives from the Greek word, "metanoia", which can be translated as "change of thinking". Our present anxieties and disasters will not be dispelled until we achieve such a fundamental change of attitude and values.

The cosmic energies now being released may well sweep away the negative aspects of materialism so powerful at present on earth. Out of catastrophe, a new society may be born, comprising all souls who can tune in to the New Age and give themselves wholeheartedly to its manifestation. Our age of anxiety, in short, is apocalyptic in its nature, and the coming of disasters will not be truly understood unless we see them as a prelude to spiritual awakening and redemption. It is clear to those with heightened intuition that if man chooses to go on treating the earth as an isolated unit in a dead cosmos, he will never resolve his difficulties. On the other hand, if he can awaken to the reality of the creative spirit in the universe, he can cooperate with higher intelligence and can bring a veritable new world into being. It is a fantastic prospect and a sublime hope at a time when potential cataclysm of his own making looms portentously before him.

Let us therefore look at the great symbolism of the Apocalypse. It pertains, of course, to a new advent, a new dispensation, seen in a great perspective of past and future – with, it would appear, our present age as the crucial turning point. Here, for example, are some verses from Matthew, Chapter 24:
A great tribulation immediately followed by a supreme hope. And this may pertain directly to us. The words were written two thousand years ago, of course; people expected a Second Coming then, but the allegory may have been phrased to hold good for the moment when the great evolutionary change reached mankind. And this it seems may be now, as we move from the Piscean to the Aquarian Age, and the waters of the spirit are poured out into human consciousness. Thus the word "generation" may refer to the end of the zodiacal cycle.

According to what is called the Doctrine of the Avatars, man has never been utterly without hope. Whenever, in the entire course of its history, despairing mankind has united to send up an agonised cry for help, an Avatar or Saviour has appeared from the higher planes. Krishna, in the Baghavad Gita, says to Arjuna:
May it not be that what we are now witnessing is the advent of such a saviour on the invisible planes? The power of cosmic love – not just our personal emotional love, but the experience of the great Oneness of all Being within all life – could flood through human consciousness, inevitably breaking down and sweeping away that which resisted it. It will come as a pressure into our lives, lifting, searing, cleansing and perforce appearing at first as an angel of death and destruction to that which works in accordance with the negative laws of avarice, selfishness or violence. The coming is a phenomenon, an event which, by its impact, will first throw men into confusion and distress. For those whose understanding is open, however, the chaos and turmoil will be followed by a flood of unbelievable joy, a new and exultant courage, as heart and mind surrender to the fire of the new and exalted influx.

This age could be ours, now. It could literally be true that "this generation shall not pass away till these things are fulfilled". As Teilhard has stressed, man has now reached that point in evolution when ego aggrandisement begins to give way to the greater goal of widening consciousness, which leads soul after soul to "home upon the Omega point". Through expanded awareness, scientific intellect could now take a leap into true knowledge of the Spirit. Indira Gandhi, in a speech at Ottawa, pleaded for a "breakthrough of the mind":
And the late Wellesley Tudor Pole wrote:
And Teilhard says, in a passage we have also quoted before but which is worth citing again:
The veils which hide the invisible planes of spirit are now exceedingly thin. A new spirit can come in glory in "the clouds", meaning the etheric plane which becomes visible to us as our vision expands. Thus, the outpouring of its impulse could sweep through human consciousness, firing heart and mind and will. For those who understand, it offers a prospect of exultant joy. For those still fettered to the lower self, however, it may appear an outpouring of the Vials of Wrath, sweeping away all that works according to the old laws of self-aggrandisement and avarice. It is for this reason that T.S. Eliot speaks of "Christ the Tiger". In Little Gidding, he says:
But "wrath", like "repent", derives from the Greek; and if we check its original meaning, we find that the word once meant "an impassioned movement of the soul". That definition is extremely illuminating. It invests the force of Biblical "wrath" with quite different associations from those we usually attach to it, and signifies something very different from a God of Vengeance. It is only when men resist the approach of the "Hound of Heaven" that the vehemence of spiritual love seems to resemble anger.

No doubt the whole apocalyptic picture we have drawn sounds a bit melodramatic, a bit sensational. We must remember, however, that we live in sensational times – times that would seem a lurid nightmare to people living a century ago. "Affairs now are soul size". Our problems, in short, have assumed positively planetary proportions; and to resolve them, we must adapt our imaginative thinking to the widest possible canvas. There is no question that things look grim when perceived from the standpoint of materialism. And even to the visionary eye, the terrible abuses man has perpetrated on the earth seem to war rant retribution. But let us suppose that the truth inherent in the Apocalypse is an allegorical one. Let us suppose a new advent is really imminent and the floodgates of love are opening. That supposition is a factor wholly ignored in most analyses of current events. And that very supposition offers a supreme hope in this age of apprehension and distress – a hope which can fire man with a new ardour and creative power. The break down may indeed be a prelude to a new dawn. And since the alternatives are so unmitigatedly bleak, it is surely worth bet ting our bottom dollar on the grand possibility. Mankind channelling energies from higher intelligence in the universe can redeem our polluted planet. The spirit of the cosmos, visible and invisible, can be brought to birth within each human heart. Here burns the "wild hope".

We are all involved personally in the world's suffering and potential redemption. "These are but the beginnings of troubles". But "look up – for your redemption draweth nigh". It is not comfortable to live in an apocalyptic age, but, if one's understanding is in focus, it is certainly exciting. And it is an immense privilege to be involved. All that is now happening can be seen as a trial, an ordeal to be experienced and overcome. Events must be perceived on their true scale. To quote Christopher Fry:
A new society is being formed by those souls who do wake and open their hearts to the reality of the spirit and of its power. Its abundance will provide enough to satisfy the needs of those whose hearts are centred upon it. Not the wants or desires, but the needs. We may be certain that, as outward conditions worsen, our invisible guides will draw closer and show themselves the more ready, even eager, to help. And this factor is of profound importance. Telepathic contact is open to us from a plane lifted above the present confusion. We must therefore wake up, look up. We can learn increasingly to live in the present moment, confident that we shall be shown the next step and that we shall be led safely through unprecedented and difficult circumstances. The opposing forces of darkness may work their evil – as the rising tide of crime and violence indeed attests. But the worse things appear to be, the more we must fervently embrace the hope of the light which will follow. There can be an extraordinary phenomenon, a flooding of love through human hearts which would link with all others who have seen the great vision. The "Great Coming" can lift people into joy and creative action.

In no previous time of change, throughout all recorded history, has man been so strongly supported by such high power. The New Age is not someone's imposed plan, not a system devised by the rational intellect, but a recognition that cosmic energies imbued with higher intelligence and with love do exist on the invisible planes, waiting to sweep through human consciousness. The wind of the spirit is blowing. Babylon, with all its wastefulness, deception and extravagance, may fall, but:
That astonishing document, the Book of Revelation, seems to speak directly to our present condition. In Chapter 12, for example, it describes how the dragon, the Beast, is thrown down to earth:
This implies that the battle for the light has already been won on the higher planes, a fact confirmed by communications received from the high spiritual sources. The ultimate victory for goodness is assured, but what transpires on earth during the interim depends on human endeavour and understanding. Armageddon is indeed being fought out within human hearts, and outward events merely mirror the condition of the soul. Inner and outer worlds reflect each other, and what occurs to us we have brought down upon our own heads. Again, however, we must look up. The energies and intelligence which can and will redeem mankind are indeed imminent. All men are being called into their service, for without human initiative and in vocation, those energies cannot be earthed. We must provide the bridgeheads for the coming invasion – or, more properly, for the coming liberation. And we must acknowledge that it will not be as easy as we might like it to be. The forces of evil are obviously rampant and fighting back desperately. And we must recognise that we are indeed facing dark and sinister impulses of evil, demonic principles thirsting for power, both overtly and behind the scenes. Hence the urgency of acknowledging the reality of invisible and light-giving forces, for any naive denial of their existence opens the door to dark possession of the soul and will. A single glance at our surroundings is sufficient to convince us that the devil is having a field day – precisely because, in our materialism, we do not recognise his existence. Rudolf Steiner distinguishes two malevolent principles at work in our world. Mephistopheles, Ahriman, the Lord of Darkness, is the denier of the Spirit, dragging consciousness down into the morass of materialism. Lucifer, or Satan, is the tempter who draws man into inflated egoism and lust for power. Both of these forces – sometimes covertly, sometimes with astonishing and brazen openness – ravage our world, infecting everything, presiding over all that conduces to pollution, both of our inner and outer environments. And these forces can only be held at bay by the power of light, love and spirit in the heart. If we take no cognisance of the principles – good and evil – at work around us, we are indeed in peril. But a guarantee of protection lies in invocation of the forces of light. Thus, the Apocalypse is indeed relevant to our understanding of the evils of our time, and to how we may over come them.

It is worth taking a second example to illustrate this point. In its closing chapters, the Book of Revelation depicts the Fall of Babylon and the descent of the Heavenly Jerusalem. At the same time, those two cities are identified with two women, "the Whore" and "the Bride". It is important that the Book does not refer to the whore of Babylon. Rather, the city is the woman; the woman symbolises a whole culture, a whole hierarchy of values. The fall of Babylon, then, represents a sweeping away of the soul qualities and attributes associated with the greed and self-seeking of materialism.

The images of the Apocalypse imply and portend a great cleansing of that within our culture which allows selfish exploitation of the earth's resources, as well as repression of truth in the name of profit-making. In his greed, man has polluted the planet and failed in his stewardship. Now he calls down evil on himself, for the evil is so rife that cleansing by some greater power has become necessary. Without the aid of such power, we alone cannot hope to redeem the situation. But if a great spiritual impulse were to surge through our society, it would bring catharsis of mind and heart. It would undermine the greed which causes so much fear and cruelty, and would attack the debasing materialism of our age. It would mean the advent of a united human movement for harmony, goodwill and cooperation. It would mean a great awakening to the service of the earth as a living being. The immense hope lies in seeing present events as the beginning of a transformation in mankind, which will entail a purgation and exorcism of social dross and evil – even if the cost is suffering and distress in individual lives.

Using these principles to illuminate the text, we may turn again to the Book of Revelation, specifically to Chapter 18. There we find Babylon described as:
The Whore Babylon represents all that constitutes greed, desire and the "lusts of the flesh" in an age of materialistic values. She is described as the woman...
As a prostitute barters herself for money, materialistic culture has bartered itself – itself, its true nature and its participation in the divine worlds. But now:
Jerusalem, in contrast, is described as a "Bride adorned for her husband", and, with Babylon's fall, the Heavenly City de scends. It has always been present, of course, on the ethereal plane, but now it must be realised on earth. It is to be formed out of every particle of matter and every human soul that can be imbued with the power and light of the spirit. This is the cosmic "take-over bid". And whereas Babylon was established from the below upwards, Jerusalem descends from above. The long story of the Fall of Man has, at the same time, been the story of the spirit's materialisation. The coming re-ascent of man entails the spiritualisation of matter.

In Chapter 20 of the Book of Revelation, we find the following passage:
The city's gold, of course, symbolises the power of the sun, while the precious stones represent the influence of the stars. The gates of the city are described as pearl – another powerful symbol, for pearl is a substance created by transmutation of pain into beauty. It is through these gates that we shall enter the city. Inside, the divine light of the cosmos unites with earth. From there, the darkened planet can begin to shine with divine radiance.

Babylon, then, is to be thrown down into the abyss and the beast to be "chained a thousand years". That which works according to the old laws of avarice must be overthrown to give place to a New Age. It is obvious enough that the impetus behind many things in our present economic structure is depleted, on the verge of collapse. The wheels of materialism may soon cease to turn. But the New Age has behind it the infinite reservoirs of cosmic energy and power. Man, dedicated to cooperation with higher intelligence in the service of the spirit, begins to work with a strength that is unlimited. As we have said, much must fall away, and we must certainly recognise that a species of cleavage will manifest itself in human kind. But it would be a mistake to see this as a distinction between the elite and the lost, between sheep and goats. Those awake to the spiritual realities behind present events will be lifted into direct contact with the Christ, their hearts and minds filled with the joy and ardour of the advent. Those who have rejected it are not lost, but will, after the great changes, be gathered on a different vibratory rate or plane. They, too, will be shepherded, and receive in time a new opportunity.



Next:  12. Christ and the Adversary Forces

This way! Click me and I'll take you to the next page!
A Vision of the Aquarian Age
Sir George Trevelyan


First published in 1977 by Coventure UK and in 1984 by Stillpoint USA
This book is out-of-print, available only on this website
Next page
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© Copyright Sir George Trevelyan and estate, 1977 and 2001. This book may be downloaded and printed on paper in single copies for personal use and study only, in a spirit of fair play and without financial transaction. .