The Cycles of Life

"In all things there is a law of cycles."

- Publius Cornelius Tacitus 55-117 AD, Roman Historian

In this week’s article Bill looks at how cycles govern our lives and how this can help us to come to view change as reassuringly exciting!

In my last newsletter I talked about the importance of investing in yourself during this low point in our economic cycle.

This week, I want to expand a little more on the concept of cycles and the important role that they play in our lives.

My introduction to precession

One of my favourite books – and one that I credit for having got me started on a new journey in life – is Graham Hancock’s bestseller, "Fingerprints of the Gods" in which he presents compelling evidence for the existence of ancient yet highly advanced civilizations on Earth many thousands of years ago.

I first read Fingerprints of the Gods some 20 years ago. The whole book intrigued me enormously but my imagination was particularly caught by his explanation of a phenomenon called precession.

Prior to reading the book I had, of course, known that the Earth spins relentlessly on its axis taking 24 hours from sunrise to sunrise and that the Earth orbits the sun in a never-ending cycle that lasts just over 365 days.

A grand cycle amongst cycles

What I was completely unaware of was the existence of another far lengthier grand cycle that slowly plays out as the Earth continues its heavenly dance around the centre of our solar system. That cycle – called the precessionary cycle - is caused by a slight 'wobble' in the Earth's axial rotation.

The dawning of the Age of Aquarius

Imagine for a moment the Earth's axis as a huge kebab stick piercing the globe through the poles, and around which the Earth is constantly rotating. Now imagine that, due to a very slight wobble, the kebab stick is, itself rotating very slowly – but in a direction opposite to the rapid spin of the Earth. (Anyone who has ever nudged a spinning gyroscope will know what I mean).

This precessionary cycle takes – wait for it – a full 26,000 years to play itself out! Yet it has an important role in introducing a different astrological age every 2,100 years or so, by gradually changing the view of star systems on our horizon.

Right now we are bidding farewell to the age of Pisces and slowly transitioning into the age of Aquarius.

So, what exactly does my little foray into the world of astrology have to do with life coaching?

Variation and constancy

Well, the point I want to make is that our lives are regulated by cycles – from 'blink-of-the-eye' in duration to the unimaginably long. The point of these cycles, to my mind, is to present us with variation or contrast within an overall framework of constancy.

That might sound like something of a contradiction – but imagine a world without cycles. It would be completely static, without variation and with a constancy that was permanent, never ending and mind numbingly boring.

I risk serious understatement when I say that our universe and our world is a fascinating and amazing place. The cyclical nature of our environment offers us excitement and opportunity through our access to unlimited variety, while we are presented with the comfort and reassurance that change is never permanent.

No matter how things change they still stay the same

When you take time out to explore and appreciate how every aspect of your life is governed by cycles, you will lose your fear of change. Instead, you will embrace and welcome it in the knowledge that no matter how much things change, they still stay the same.

Swimmers who try to fight strong currents eventually lose their energy and perish. Those who swim with the currents are effortlessly transported to a different place from where they can use their conserved energy to find their way back to shore.

Embracing change

The cycles of life are like currents. Fight the change they present you with and you’ll quickly be sapped of your energy and will to live. Embrace the change, however, and you’ll soon find new horizons opening up in a surprisingly reassuring way.

Have a great week!

With warm regards,


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