Technically, the astrological explanation is right. It needs some fleshing out to make any sense (actually it will never make sense). The spiritualists and other people experimenting with occult science, Neo-Paganism and such curiosities in the 18th and 19th Centuries produced works which caught the attention of late-1970’s religious seekers. These people read and tried such practices and those of 20th-Century channelers (people who allow themselves willingly to be possessed by spirits without always knowing anything about them first in a search for knowledge and wisdom: Bad idea BTW).
The planet proceeds through the “signs” – or twelfths of the sky in any hemisphere – backward to the direction of the zodiac used in divination and personality classification. Thus the Age of Taurus was the time people worshipped bulls, the Age of Aries was when sheep were important in ANE Civilization and the Age of Pisces was the Christian Era (supposedly; in reality it was never anywhere near that simple and astrology is an attempt to use astronomic-electromagnetic scientific concepts for divination, forbidden by God because it doesn’t work and tends to take people’s worship away from God.) Following Pisces is Aquarius, one of the few human symbols in the Babylonian-Hellenic system, making humanity the new god, and Aquarius is an air sign (intellectual) but a bearer of water (emotion), so that fusion of thought and feeling and self-worship are supposedly part of the new role of every person. New Agers believe each age is accompanied by “earth changes”, or disastrous movements of earth and water, with plagues and other problems as part of the changes. They think only those in harmony with the coming age are capable of surviving these changes. Thus the Age of Pisces came with disasters that only Christians survived (I don’t know of any reason to beleive this; most of the world remained pagan back then). They think the Age of Aries came in with disasters only sheep-worshippers survived (what sheep-worshippers?) and the Age of Aquarius came in with changes only New Agers will survive. Therefore they feel they must convert people. However, because they equate air with a hands-off style, they don’t think this proselytism should happen out loud and with force – rather, with meditaiton, sending out energy – airy ways of persuasion, such as semantic games and cooperative-looking ways of making their way into power in schools and offices – they don’t consider this sneaky but gentle and necessary. They see themselves, not as a conspiracy to destroy other religions, but as a movement that will inevitably become universal as it becomes the only way through the earth changes. They feel sorry for “Old-Agers”, whom they see as fearful, limited and dull, lacking love and light.
As you might have guessed I used to be one. That’s how I can use so many gross generalizations. I merely mean to explain what I mostly saw and picked up in the movement.
The New Age Movement is hard to fight using normal means of argument because it disregards mere logic or fairness as rules needed in an old, fading world, irrelevant to the intuitive wonders they feel prepared to rely on, and they just respond to everything with semi-agreement and semi-pity, never seeing a need to make a point and defend it clearly. It’s experience, however subjective, they generally consider meaningful, since they consider themselves the standard of reality.