(From Soul Cycles of the Seven Rays,by Phillip Lindsay © 2005)

7 rays_NewHumanity is entering a 2,160 year cycle called the Age of Aquarius, where astrology will gradually evolve toward that which is known as Esoteric Astrology. Esoteric Astrology looks towards causes rather than effects, to the life of the human soul that lies behind the outer form, the body.

The soul is that imperishable, perpetual existence that takes repeated cyclic embodiments – in male or female bodies and in varying cultures; part of its purpose is to expand consciousness, and to work out karma.

Most astrology practiced today is ‘personality’ astrology that ranges from the mundane to the quite spiritually oriented. Whether we are considering fortune-telling astrology or the more serious psychological astrology that strives to help bring about integration and wholeness, we are still limited by the tools with which we work.

One of the major new tools is the Science of the Seven Rays. They are seven streams of energy which enter this solar system from cosmic sources and condition every life form within it.

Esoteric Astrology gives a larger perspective of life; that we are not just inhabiting a little planet on its own in the solar system, but participating as an energy centre within a greater solar life.

The Seven Rays are the “missing link” in astrology, and the planets are simply ‘vehicles’ for these energies, transmitting them to Earth via the zodiac, whose signs have specific resonances with the rays.

The rays can be studied by themselves and constitute what is known as Esoteric Psychology. One of the greatest psychologists of last century, Roberto Assagioli, developed his Psychosynthesis techniques from the Seven Rays.

The source for this new information came from Alice A. Bailey, who acted as an amanuensis between 1919 and 1949 for the Tibetan Master Djwhal Khul, or D.K., one of the Masters of Wisdom.

The series of 24 books were written mainly for the many souls who would be incarnate in the West around the turn of the century. The teachings therein are profound, multi-levelled, and timeless, synthesising Eastern and Western traditions.

Before discussing some techniques of Esoteric Astrology, take a look at some tabulations of the Seven Rays, noting all the qualities that apply to yourself, trying to be as honest as possible! By spending a little time doing this you may start to isolate some ray expressions in your make-up.

There needs to be a process of discrimination as to what ‘body’ is expressing which ray. For example, you may have Ray 7 for the physical, Ray 6 for the astral, or Ray 4 for the mental. You could be a Ray 2 soul with a Ray 3 personality, so these five Rays would constitute your ‘Ray Structure’.

This information does not come instantaneously, nor can be derived from your horoscope, but will emerge after patient pondering, meditation and reflection.

Ray 1

Will or

Virtues: Strength, courage, steadfast, truthful, fearless, trustworthy, large-minded.

Vices: Ruthless, hard, cold, proud, arrogant, ambitious, tyrannical, cruel, controlling.

Ray 2


Virtues: Calm, strength, endurance, patience, love of truth, intuition, serenity.

Vices: Coldness, indifference, self pity, fear, love of being loved, personal wisdom.

Ray 3


Virtues: Wide abstract views, sincerity, clarity of intellect, patience, caution, planning.

Vices: Intellectual pride, devious, scheming, inaccuracy, obstinacy, critical, busyness.

Ray 4


Virtues: Affectionate, sympathetic, courageous, devotion, generosity, quick intellect.

Vices: Worrier, inaccuracy, self-centeredness, cowardice, extravagance, mood swings.

Ray 5


Virtues: Perseverence, commonsense, accuracy, rational, uprightness, keen intellect.

Vices: Narrowness, harsh criticism, lack of sympathy, arrogant, proud, prejudice, cold.

Ray 6


Virtues: Devotion, single-minded, tenderness, intuitive, loyal, reverence, loving.

Vices: Selfish, jealous, sentimental, deceptive, fiery anger, narrow, sectarian, fanatical.

Ray 7


Virtues: Strength, perseverence, courage, courtesy, detailed, self-reliance, practical.

Vices: Formalism, bigotry, pride, opinionated, superficial judgements, narrowness.

This may take a while, and one method is to ‘try a ray on’ for a month or so, observing yourself and others in your environment.

The rays are also dual in expression,
hence the following tabulation:
(Note the planetary rulers below can be applied to types A & B)

Ray 1

Purpose  Destruction

Type A: Persistent. Never gives in. Depended upon by others.
Type B: Destroys that which prevents free expression of life force.

Ray 2

Inclusive Coherence

Type A: Magnetic, radiant, sharing, compassionate, empathetic.
Type B: Emphasis on wisdom, not knowledge. Dispassionate.

Ray 3 Active-Intelligence
Adaptability Creativity

Type A: Philosopher, theorist. Emphasis on abstract ideas.
Type B: Businesslike. Practical. Manipulator. Gamesmanship.

Ray 4 Harmony/Conflict
Beauty  Unity  Sensitivity

Type A: Brings harmony from conflict. Mediator.
Type B: Colourful. Strong contrasts. Artistic. Volatile. Forceful.

Ray 5
Concrete Science
Science Analysis Mind

Type A: Researcher. Intellectual. Accuracy. Clarity.
Type B: Technician. Practical in applications.

Ray 6 Devotion/Idealism

Idealism Persistence

Type A: Receptive. Passive. Loyal. Worshipful. Tranquil. Gentle.
Type B: Fiery zeal. Strives toward ideals. Aspires. Aggressive.

Ray 7
Ceremonial Order

Organisation Creative

Type A: Highly organised. Plays by rules. Meticulous in action.
Type B: Emphasis on creative process. Manifests into forms.

Identifying rays through Occupations

Ray 1

Politicians, occultists, leaders, explorers, executives, managers, dictators.

Ray 2

Teachers, healers, sages, servers, scholars, humanists, philanthropists.

Ray 3
Active Intelligence

Philosophers, organisers, astrologers, mathe-maticians, economists, historians, business people.

Ray 4 Harmony/Conflict

Artists, mediators, architects, poets, psychologists, musicians.

Ray 5 Concrete Science

Scientists, researchers, alchemists, engineers, analysts, inventors.

Ray 6

Ministers, mystics, missionaries, devotees, orators, crusaders, zealots.

Ray 7
Ceremonial Order

Builders, administrators, designers, revolutionaries, magicians.

The Seven Rays correspond to many ‘septenaries’, which provide the basic building blocks of occultism. Planets ‘rule’ rays, similar to astrological rulerships, hence the interface between rays, planets & zodiac signs. Remember though, do not make the mistake of trying to ascertain the rays from the horoscope; determining the rays, then interpreting the horoscope in light of the rays, is ideally the correct procedure.






Ray 1
Will Power





Ray 2
Love Wisdom





Ray 3
Active Intelligence





Ray 4  Harmony/Conflict





Ray 5
Concrete Science





Ray 6
Abstract Idealism





Ray 7
Ceremonial Magic





The above chakra assignations vary according to one’s stage of evolution.

All life is conditioned by the Seven Rays, whether it be an animal, a tree, a human, an organisation, a city or nation. The rays have their own cycle periods which connect with the greater astrological ages of 2,160 years, the Great Year of 25,920 years, and the Yugas, or secret cycles of the Hindu adepts.

A major cycle of Ray 6 has just finished in the Piscean Age, and a Ray 7 cycle is starting, which overlaps into the Aquarian Age.

These rays and Ages have their sympathetic resonances of course, ensuring maximum effect upon humanity.

Esoteric Astrology has been called the ‘science of all sciences’ because it is a system of relating every living entity – a planet, ray, sign or human being.  It describes the qualities and energies of these living beings thereby allowing comprehension, and also understanding of how they interact with each other.

Therefore it is truly the Science of Relationships – human, planetary, zodiacal and stellar.

When the word ‘science’ is used, bear in mind that it refers not to concrete analysis that employs the tangible senses of sight, hearing, touch, smell and taste. ‘Science’ comes from the root ‘scire’ – to know or discern – it is really the knowledge of the ‘higher self’, soul or abstract mind, which perceives the whole synthetically, intuitively and inclusively; hence the term Occult Science.

The disciplines of Esoteric Astrology and The Ageless Wisdom incorporate the concrete tangible sciences, but also draw upon that intangible ‘sixth’sense: intuition.

‘Esoteric’ means: “understood by, or meant for a select few…the initiated”. (Macquarie Dictionary.)  This is not to be misunderstood as any kind of elitism. What was esoteric becomes mainstream eventually, yet there will always be a core that remains esoteric, waiting to be unveiled by the generations of enquirers on the spiritual path.

The similar word ‘occult’ means “hidden … beyond the bounds of ordinary knowledge” or, “of a nature not understood, as physical qualities”. In itself, ‘occult’ does not have the negative implication which mainstream media has promoted.

Those who have done the necessary work, have undergone various disciplines (such as meditation) and have developed these ‘subtle’ senses, are ready to receive esoteric knowledge. The unprepared would have no foundation within which to ‘ground’ it, though many are capable of developing these faculties.

The zodiacal signs are another ‘occult’ factor, i.e. they are ‘unseen’, yet act as a channel through which the archetypes of the zodiacal constellations focus. That the two types of zodiac do not align, as argued by astrologers of the tropical and sidereal schools, or astronomical sceptics, is secondary to the primary fact that the potent ‘thoughtforms’ of the signs exist and act as gateways for the rays and planets.

Astrology is based upon illusion in the sense that the zodiac is built around the ‘ecliptic’, the apparent path of the Sun around the Earth. Of course we know that the Earth’s path or orbit is around the Sun, so we work within this paradox, in the knowledge that eventually humanity will transcend this illusion. This is the source of one of our greatest mysteries, and we are told that the situation will be ‘rectified’ in the Age of Capricorn, following the Age of Aquarius.

Demystifying Astrology Through Occult Knowledge

Astrologers and the lay public know in their hearts that astrology “works”, accurately describing their psychology and patterns in their lives. But ‘how’ does it work?

Most people cannot answer the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of this big question, preferring to ‘jump into the juice’ – that which yields the deep psychological insights in self-understanding, and plan their lives according to the planetary cycles they are experiencing.

Therefore the reasoning processes have not been fully utilised in arriving at a true under-standing and hence astrology is experienced more from a mystical viewpoint, which relies mainly on intuition reflected in the feeling nature. This is partly why astrology gets so much criticism from the more concrete-minded scientific community and public at large, because there is no demonstration of ‘science’ or mental reasoning.

The path of Mysticism eventually leads to the path of Occultism, where qualities of heart and head are synthesised. Occultism is a wholistic science, and therefore has the potential to bridge to the concrete sciences. A synthesis of the mystical and occult paths lead to a blending of love and reason.  However, there are many facets to occult science, all of which have to be learnt to understand the whole.

In answering the question of how astrology works, it is necessary to depart briefly into the larger cosmos from where these forces emanate. It will also be necessary to introduce a few simple concepts with which the reader may be unfamiliar:

1. The solar system is a living being, as are all the individual lives which inhabit it, whether they be planets, asteroids, comets, human beings or any kingdom in nature. In some ways all these ‘lesser lives’ can be seen as ‘cells’ within the greater body. The main point here is that all these forms are inhabited by some kind of intelligence, from the very primitive mineral consciousness, to a human soul, to the “god” which inhabits a planet or a sun.

Just as humans have subtle energy centres or chakras, the so-called “seven sacred planets” in this solar system fulfill the same function. On a larger scale again, this solar system as a whole can be seen as one gigantic chakra or energy centre, inhabited by a stupendous consciousness that we may vaguely call “god”, or esoterically, the “Solar Logos”.

The Ancient Wisdom tells us that our sun is part of a corporate body of six other suns – which constitute a massive cosmic entity that undergoes an evolution upon its own level, and so on.

2. These seven suns, of which ours is one, are continually giving off forces which are the product of their ongoing evolution. It is said that these forces are absorbed through the seven stars of the Great Bear constellation (Ursa Major) and their emanations are called the Seven Rays.

Suffice to say, the seven stars of Ursa Major have much history and mythology in human consciousness, and in India are known as the Seven Rishis, associated with the Will and in a simple generic way, are “masculine”. The ray forces emanating from these stars unite, we are told, with the seven stars of the Pleaides constellation, the so-called “Seven Sisters”, also rich in legend, and constituting forces which represent the “Cosmic Mother”, or “feminine” principle.

Here we have a true “marriage made in heaven” as these forces merge. Father and Mother produce a “son”, represented by the star Sirius. Together these three constellations, The Great Bear, The Pleaides and Sirius consitute a major conditioning triangle of forces influencing this solar system.

3. From these three constellations the seven ray energies stream through the seven stars of the Little Bear (Ursa Minor), and are then magnetized to one or other of the twelve zodiacal constellations, not to be confused with zodiacal signs. Certain rays transmit through particular constellations with which they have an affinity, and modified, stream toward our solar system.

4. Our sun acts as a “gate” for the seven ray energies to pour through, and from here the seven forces are drawn toward the “seven sacred planets” of our solar system, which act as “vehicles” for the ray energies. The rays have an affinity with each of the seven planets, which are of course, proto-types of the Seven Rishis of the Great Bear. As above, so below. There are five “non-sacred” planets which also have an affinity for the rays and assist in transmitting them.

5. The planets continually orbit our sun, creating a vast sea of magnetic forces, and transmit these energies to earth through its zodiac signs. Of course we know from ‘exoteric science’ that the Sun and Moon both have physical, emotional and mental effects; these are well documented in our earthly tides, full moon cycles, in sunspot activity, and the growth that occurs in nature – validated by many scientific experiments and discoveries. The other planets have less physical, but more psychological and psychic effects.

6. The planets transmit the ray energies through the zodiac; the zodiacal sign is another electromagnetic pattern or “thoughtform”. The understanding of what consitutes a thoughtform, something that all humans can create, is essential in the comprehension of why zodiacal energies condition human beings, but is beyond the scope of this discussion.

Our earth zodiac of “signs”, is an invisible reflection and focaliser of the energies from the visible constellational zodiac earlier mentioned. The zodiac can be considered as a ‘subtle’ body of the Earth, the ‘astral’ body, (astral meaning ‘starry substance’). Hence there are intangible, unseen energies that we are perceiving with our developing ‘intangible’ senses.

7. By the time these forces reach earth, there is a combination of three groups of energetic patterns  from rays, planets and zodiac signs. They find their way through the major chakras of the planet (major cities, but also certain groupings) and are thence distributed to humanity.

8. When they reach a human being, the point of least resistance is found in certain chakras, depending on the unfolded state of awareness of an individual. The seven endocrine glands are associated specifically with each of the seven major chakras, and this is where one of the most mysterious processes takes place – the transformation of subtle forces outside of the body into tangible forces within the body.

The endocrine glands are stimulated into activity, releasing hormones into the bloodstream, which act as catalysts for physiological growth and psychological behaviour. This is a key as to how astrological energies affect human beings.

This completes a short description of the movement of conditioning energy from its emanataing source, stepped down as planetary forces at its final destination in a human being.

To recap the journey:

Seven solar systems of which ours is one.
Seven Rays emanate from the Seven Stars of the Great Bear constellation.

Seven Stars of the Pleaides.


Seven Stars of the Little Bear constellation.

Twelve zodiacal constellations.

Our Sun.
Seven Sacred Planets of our solar system.
Twelve zodiacal signs.
Chakras of the Earth.
Human kingdom

Animal, vegetable and mineral kingdoms.



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