[Carl Jung on Astrology and the Birth of Christ]

I have dwelt at some length on the dualistic aspects of the Christ-figure because, through the fish symbolism, Christ was assimilated into a world of ideas that seems far removed from the gospels a world of pagan origin, saturated with astrological beliefs to an extent that we can scarcely imagine today.

Christ was born at the beginning of the aeon of the Fishes. It is by no means ruled out that there were educated Christians who knew of the coniunctio maxima of Jupiter and Saturn in Pisces in the year 7 B.C., just as, according to the gospel reports, there were Chaldaeans who actually found Christ’s birthplace. The Fishes, however, are a double sign.

At midnight on Christmas Eve, when (according to the old time-reckoning) the sun enters Capricorn, Virgo is standing on the eastern horizon, and is soon followed by the Serpent held by Ophiuchus, the “Serpent-bearer.” This astrological coincidence seems to me worth mentioning, as also the view that the two fishes are mother and son.

The latter idea has a quite special significance because this relationship suggests that the two fishes were originally one. In fact, Babylonian and Indian astrology know of only one fish.

Later, this mother evidently gave birth to a son, who was a fish like her. The same thing happened to the Phoenician Derceto-Atargatis, who, half fish herself, had a son called Ichthys.

It is just possible that “the sign of the prophet Jonah” goes back to an older tradition about an heroic night sea journey and conquest of death, where the hero is swallowed by a fish (“whale-dragon”) and is then reborn.

The redemptory name Joshua (Yehoshua, Yeshua, Gr. lesous) is connected with the fish: Joshua is the son of Nun, and Nun means ‘fish.’

The Joshua ben Nun of the Khidr legend had dealings with a fish that was meant to be eaten but was revived by a drop of water from the fountain of life. ~Carl Jung, Aion, The Historical Significance of the Fish, Paragraphs 172-173.

Image: The Great Conjunction of 7 B.C. at the time of the Magi.