The Sun passes through Aquarius once every solar year. In its journey, it covers the last week in January and the first two weeks of February. Those born between the dates of January 21 and February 20 are doubly blessed, as they are favored of the gods. Aquarius was believed to have two rulers, Saturn and Uranus. In ancient times, the Romans held the Festival of Purification at the end of January. It was the festival of the spring washing and symbolical of the fact that the process had been completed.
February is derived from februo, a Sabine word. The word Aquarius is derived from the same root as aqua, which is Latin for water. The meaning of Aquarius is Water-bearer or Cup-bearer. Its glyph is a very ancient symbol of water. Ganymede, the cup-bearer of the gods, first believed to be a man, is the symbol of Aquarius, in Greek mythology. He holds the little urn in his hand, inclined downwards, and is always pouring out of it.
The first part of the name, Ganymede, refers to a sacred river. The second part, Medfe, is an old form of mead and refers to wine, honey, sweet drink, or one made of manna. It is clearly analogous to the cerebral esse, which forms the basis of all the fluids of the body. The ancients believed that when the Sun is transiting Aquarius, the moisture in the air is released and precipitated in the form of rain.
The historical symbol of Aquarius shows this heavenly man, the Son of Man, holding an urn from which the Water of Life is pouring upon the earth. The nature of the man is essentially heavenly, the light is being disseminated, etheric waves shortened, thus producing more powerful currents. The urn in the hand of Aquarius is Saturn. In astrological lore, Uranus and Saturn are co-rulers of this sign.
As Saturn is always concerned with seed, the water in this urn must contain seed, and they believed that it does. The blood serum is the sea water solution which vitalizes the blood corpuscles swimming in it. This serum is the salt sea of the body in which live the physiological fish, for the corpuscles are fish in the human sea. As the blood serum is associated with this sign, there came the expression “blue blood” or “royal blood,” The sedative qualities of blue are well known.
Ancient astrologers claimed that Aquarius, physiologically and anatomically, relates to the saline solution of the blood, and also to the ankles. It pertains to the last two vertebrae of the sacrum and the first coccygeal vertebrae. They claim that in the blood stream are found the two fishes, the positive or Gold Fish, and the negative or Silver Fish.
Because Aquarius is heaven, it represents the whole science of astronomy. They believed that as the vibrations of Aquarius possess powerful virtue and influence, it is evident that they alter the air and the seasons in a very strange and secret manner.
Aquarius was believed to be the symbol of the eleventh period of the cycle of life. It signifies the buddhac vehicle of the Spirit, as the container of Truth, the water, from the fountain of Divine Reality. It was a symbol of the source of Life, as an outpouring of Truth from above. Truth is compared in Scriptures to a streaming fountain. If her waters flow not in a perpetual progression, they sink into the muddy pool of conformity and tradition.
In Bible alchemy, Aquarius represents Dan, the fifth son of Jacob, and means “judgment,” or “he that judges.” In the symbolism of the New Testament, Aquarius corresponds to the disciple, James. James learned, through trials and tribulations, how to live an authentic, personal life, and he shared his personal lesson with others. He believed we are all one, sacred soul.