- Age Point Progression
Astrological psychology identifies timing of predictable psychological crises in life. These events correspond with an ‘Age Point’ as it travels through the 12 houses of the horoscope (Age Point Progression) at the rate of 6 years per house. It takes 72 years for the Age Point to go full cycle.
Figure 1 Life Clock
There are times, determined by the placement of the Age Point, when it may be appropriate to charge ahead and times when it may be better to look inward. When the Age Point travels through the cusp of a house, it is a time of reaction to outside stimulation and one gains fulfillment through the environment. When the Age Point reaches the cusp of a house, there is more likely potential for accelerated activity. On the other hand, the low point of a house is a point of weakened expression into the environment located in the mutable zone of any house; it signifies a time when the individual may find this an appropriate time for reflection and looking inward. Throughout life cycle the Age Point progresses through the houses which represent contexts for outer world activity as defined by the content of each of the 12 houses. [i]
For example, the 10th house represents the individualism process and expression in the outer world as one gains inner authority ; the 4th house represents the sense of belonging to collective tradition or family. There are cusps and low points in each house and a corresponding cycle of inner and outer psychological orientation.
“Of the techniques used in Astrological Psychology, Age Progression – using the chart as a Life Clock – is often the one which most captures the imagination and interest. Age Progression is the Huber method of timing in the horoscope… The four Cardinal points – the Ascendant, the Descendant, the IC or cusp of the 4th house, and the Midheaven – are high energy areas of the high energy curve… there is a huge surge of energy at each of these four points, like a thrust or push out into the environment and the outside world… In time after this the energy falls off and is at its lowest at the Low Point, approximately two-thirds of the way through each house.”[ii]
In the Huber Method of astrological psychology every 72 years marks a complete Age Point cycle; psycho-physical development starts at birth. The Age Point journeys around the circle of the 12 houses, each one representing an area of environmental influence on the individual. The 360-degree circle ends with the return of the Age Point to the ascendant, the point where it began. As the Age Point prepares a return to the ascendant lessons learned by outer experiences can enrich the soul spiritually. At this stage of life, the cycle returns to the original point, “the autonomous personality is purified and can begin to live according to spiritual values, developing a relationship with the Higher Self, spiritual/divine”[iii] Astrological psychology provides a structured, practical way to understand one’s life journey during and after the ego-identifications begin to break down while one is still active and of the world.
The movement of the Age Point forming aspects to transpersonal planets (Uranus, Neptune and Pluto) can highlight opportunities to transcend ego attachments associated with the relevant house. For example, if the Age Point is in the 10th house, the house of public image, personal authority, managerial responsibility and Uranus is in square aspect in the 7th house, then she may have shocking insights into how she conducts managerial affairs in her life. It may come to her awareness that she had been controlled and stifled, and needs independence to break out of these confined circumstances in her public life.
Astrological Psychology tracks Age Point Aspects to ego planets as they effect the ego strengths of a person. The Hubers defined the Sun, Moon and Saturn as ego planets. They have to do with the ego attachments of thinking and willing (the Sun), the need for love and mutual love (Moon), and the need for safety and security (Saturn). One of them is dominant and reliable for integration of the ego so that one is balanced in thinking (SUN), feeling (MOON) and taking care of the body (SATURN).
2. Dreams events and Age Point dynamics on the ego planets
Carl Jung determined that dreams play a role in highlighting the individual’s psychological ego complexes in his/her personal unconscious.[iv] The definition of a psychological complex is that it is an unconscious encapsulation of two opposing feeling states, each with a valence of positive or negative feelings. The complex dynamic generates psychic energy from the unconscious. Some examples are:
- independence vs. the need to be taken care of;
- assertion vs. passivity or aggression;
- suppression of thoughts and feelings vs. expression of thoughts and feelings;
- in human produced trauma, the need to relate vs. the intention to do harm.
On more archetypal levels, dreams represent a mother complex (stay with mother or leave); father complex (listen to authority and do not question it or be your own authority); God complex (spiritual ego fanaticism or be guided by the Divine within/without you). The unconscious structures of the shadow, animus and anima archetypes are also activated by dreams and can take the form of projections onto people by the unconscious ego.
Dreams play a role in transient ego identity attachments. They can have a compensatory or balancing role in the psyche between the conscious ego and the Self which generates all dream content. See the figure below. Typically, a trigger event in the environment usually confronts the ego which stimulates an already existing ego complex in the unconscious to produce a dream.
The dream content usually coincides with an Age Point aspect to one of the ego planets from one House to another. When the dream occurs, the ego identity of the individual involved is infused with images from these ego complexes represented by the planets involved coming through in dream content. For example, one is fighting with various unknown figures of the same sex in a dream and one is threatened by them which triggers the ego need for self- protection. We look at the Age Point aspects and discover that Saturn is in square or opposition to the Age Point in this instance and the aspects are opposed from House 1 and 7.
The unique perspective of my approach combines Jungian techniques of dream analysis and relates these to dynamics of chart interpretation using the Huber Method to understand the timing of events of developmental crisis in the life of the person and the identification and resolution of the conflict between our inner and outer worlds.
Developmental challenges are revealed by the critical times when the Age Point transits planets that are in aspect figures, or to other sensitive points in the chart; thus creating a challenge to complete a developmental tasks. See figure 3. [v] This process is paralleled in the timing of certain dreams which usually identify the crisis to the native’s dream ego as he/she comes up against losses or challenges. Personal identity losses (family role), occupational identity losses, and physical body losses through illness, to name a few, come up in dreams. The recording and amplification of dreams, and the date they are dreamed are correlated with critical periods or crossing points and aspects of the Age Point. By this synchronistic correspondence, we can identify meaningful ways in which dreams are preparing the ego for losses, which can have implications for healing and personal transcendence.
3. Life events, dreams and Age Point aspects
Below are examples of my dreams taken throughout my life with corresponding interpretations in the context of developmental challenges as reflected in the HUBER LIFE CLOCK.
Age Point 5th House cusp conjunct cuspal Node at age 24:
June 1973: “Standing on the edge of a cliff with Mother on my back; I could not jump a chasm and reach the other side with her on my back. I put Mother down and jumped to the other side myself”. This dream occurred right before my joining the Peace Corps and going abroad for 2 years. Astrologically speaking, I was compelled to journey as a hero. To leave home and strike out on my own. The Age Point had moved to conjunct my North Node in the 5th house of my natal chart. The correspondence of this aspect and this action spurred me to create my own destiny.
At the time of this dream, my Age Point in the 5th House on the cusp conjunct Node means developing a definite commitment to professional life. By taking risks to join the Peace Corps for two years, I was aware of the need for constructive action; I took on the opportunity for self-expression as a teacher in the Middle East. The Age Point in the fixed sign Taurus I am motivated to persevere in willful action defending myself against my family’s objection to travel to conflict-ridden Middle East. It is a do or die situation and the crisis in existential tests are very real indeed as I left home for 2 years into the unknown.
Age Point on the cusp of 8th House oppose cuspal natal Sun on 2nd at age 43:
11/30/1991: “I was at a social work agency (the image in the dream looked like the hospital where I worked) and had clerical staff working for me. I gave an orientation to a new group of new students and new employees. Our offices were in a large room that had a number of desks. Very similar to a library at a college. There was a revolution.” (Pre-cognitive dream)
At the time of this dream, my Age Point was on the cusp of the 8th House which was 3 years before mid-life/ frustration crisis when professionally I was stuck at not being able to do my life’s mission psychotherapy. I was in a large VA hospital system and was transferred out of the Mental Health outpatient unit. This dream hints at this time in life where one has to transform oneself, have a rebirth experience or remain stagnant. My will and thinking function was thwarted by a supervisor who moved me to a Surgical ward against my wishes. The dream pointed to a future time when occupationally I would be in charge of training of new employees and this task would revolutionary. In fact, in 2005 (14 years later from the dream), I would be appointed Chief of Social Work. In that position I trained and oriented 44 master’s level staff to new jobs at the VA hospital. The dream was hinting at constructive regeneration professionally at a time for me when I was depressed in my job function because I was not fulfilled.
Age Point conjunct Nodal Age Point in 9th House square Uranus in 7th House a age 48:
3/20/1997: ‘ Was in a room with a clerk. There was a box load of cattle coming to the hospital (where I worked) for a surgery unit with a well-known surgeon. I was taking orders off charts laughing to the clerk (about my role, now like a nurse) saying to the clerk, ‘at one time I didn’t even answer telephones!’
The time of the dream was when the Age Point was conjunct the Nodal Age point (Huber’s crossing age point concept) is a time when past Karma and present conditions coincide into a critical life pause demanding a decision. It was a time of reckoning and specific events happened essential to the experience my personal development. . This conjunction of two Age Points happens only once every 36 years.[vi]
The dream points to a common intrapsychic conflict of being in a submissive role which was paradoxically a role reversal. Taking orders being a clerk was not professional. At this time I left the VA hospital and took a job as a Clinical Director of a partial hospitalization program at another hospital in another town. Because of corruption and illegal activity on the part of the CO at that hospital, I was told to falsify my client’s records to make more money for the unit. I hired a lawyer and defined my professional ethics that would guide me through the rest of my professional career (9th house polarity with 3rd house called the Thought Axis). After 6 weeks I returned to the VA where I originally was and had to accept a lower position. A readjustment and sufficient braking power was needed. My return to the VA just after I took on a Director position was very fateful. And my return set the stage for further professional development later (2005 when I became Chief of Social Work).
Age Point on the cusp of the 12th House at age 65:
1/19/2014 I had a dream “I was going to climb a mountain with some people. We were ascending but I needed clothes. I needed pants and long underwear (security of Saturn). I had a paper bag of money (cash) in which I was going to buy stuff in a store. I left other people I was with to find my gear and got a sense of relief from this. As I wandered through the store alone, I picked up my underwear and jeans. After a discussion with a clerk about something unimportant, I got in line to pay for my stuff. At once I realized that I lost my paper bag of money (security and protection of Saturn). It was gone. I went looking for it. I went back behind the counters and thought one of the clerks took it. I could not find it anywhere. In the end, I had the jeans and the underwear on a table but they belonged to me all along. I did not have to pay for them.”
At the time of this dream, the Age Point was on the cusp of the 12th House of loneliness, isolation, and self-undoing. My life challenge at this time was to take constructive action in a retreat mode and retire from public life. On January 31, 2014 I retired from my employment. In that transition to possess material security and at the same time find wholeness; I had to let go of attachments represented by money worries. As most of us know, when one retires, one has less material resources. Retirement means learning to live on a fixed income, letting go of occupational identity attachments, and living with less. The dream supports the idea that I have no need for anxiety and insecurity. The dreams promises that I would not have enough money to get by. In fact, in the end of the dream, there would already be enough provisions for my trip “up the mountain”.
These above dreams and their Age Point aspects correlations was a discovery I made. Everyone has a life journey that is developmental and significant. Just follow your dreams and note the timing and the rhythm of the planetary aspects in your life. Below is a figure representing Age Point psychological crises that is from my book Life Passages, 2017. Note that I have incorporated Erik Erikson’s Crises in Adult life in the figure.
[i] Huber, Bruno and Louise, The Astrological Houses, Samuel Weiser Publishing, New York. 1998
[ii] Hopewell, Joyce and Llewellyn, Richard, The Cosmic Egg Timer, Hopewell , Knutsford, UK, 2004
[iii] Ibid. pp 144-145
[iv] Hall, James, Jungian Dream Interpretation, Inner City Books, Toronto Canada, 1983. P. 128
[v] Hopewell, Joyce and Llewellyn, Richard, The Cosmic Egg Timer, pp127-128
[vi] Huber, Bruno and Louise, Moon Node Astrology, Hopewell, Knutsford, UK, 2005.