Whenever we read or hear about Pluto and it’s association with Astrology, a host of themes are mentioned like: transformation, regeneration, rebirth, catharsis, upheaval, renewal and change. However, the NUMBER ONE word that I witness, which attracts the most fixation, where Pluto is concerned is DEATH.
By all means, it’s both a dangerous and incomplete analysis to mention that word in connection with Pluto and refuse to expand the conversation.
YES… transiting Pluto could legitimately indicate a physical death. However, we must also broaden our way of thinking and remember the myriad of symbolic deaths we’re capable of experiencing: the death of our ego, psychological deaths, emotional deaths, vocational and relationship deaths, and deaths of outmoded behavior patterns.
Let’s also remember that in addition to these potential types of death, Plutonian energy is also intimately connected to REBIRTH.
When we’re in the midst of a major Pluto transit to personal points within our birth chart, we’ll most likely, in some form or another, be grappling with the “death” of ourselves as we know it, in that particular area of life.
Most of us, at one time or another, have chosen to reinforce our perceived identities through external anchors; the supports which bolster us and give us a greater sense of who and what we are. Intimate relationships, jobs, family, friendships, personal possessions, money, religion and spirituality are some examples of such anchors.
When we choose these areas as points of over identification, especially to the exclusion of all others, that territory is ripe and fertile ground for transiting Pluto. As my personal Astrologer would say about transits: that planetary energy is coming to visit you.”
WELL….. guess who’s coming to dinner??
Pluto has its own unique modus operandi for realigning us through severely disrupting our attachments to people, things and situations in which we’ve become overly immersed.
This isn’t because we’ve been “bad” people or Pluto is an “evil” force out to get us, but more so because it’s time for a cycle of personal re-balancing and the broadening our conception of what our true identity entails.
In other words, the universe is telling us that we’re much more than the narrow and limited version of ourselves that we’ve been fixating on.
To provide an example: Let’s say that “Bob” lives and breathes for his job. Basically, he’s obsessed. All he ever talks about is being “VP of Special Promotions”. His business cards are always on deck…. BAM!
When transiting Pluto makes contact with Bob’s Ascendant, Sun, Midheaven or another personal point in his chart, the message during this time may be: “HEY BOB!! Your identity and life is about MUCH MORE than this job. As a matter of fact, you guys are going out of business in less than 6 months!” The archetypal energy of Pluto will be released through whatever avenue(s) which are appropriate for Bob to receive that message.
Often, during Plutonian periods, when upheaval occurs, there’s a daunting sense of loss, even if what’s been removed from our lives is for our eventual betterment. While our knees are buckling, we shake our fist to the sky and ask “Why Pluto, Why??”
The truth is, we had become so used to having certain things in our lives, (even if they we’re sucking out our very souls) that we’re now utterly bewildered by their sudden removal. We may find ourselves mystified and wondering: what now??
Pluto transits are SLOW. The meaning behind them is one of gradual unfoldment. Chances are, we won’t be able to grasp the immediate significance of the losses we’ve accrued by the time our weekly episode of “Breaking Bad” is over or by the time the Steelers beat the Patriots.
This sense of loss is mainly present because we may have built up so much psychic and emotional resistance to freeing ourselves from these attachments. “NO! Let me suffer!” we cry.
Intellectually, we can process the standard mantras such as “everything happens for a reason.” Or, “It’s all in God’s Plan.” However, on an instinctive and emotional level, we’re scared as hell because we have no earthly idea what’s behind door number two, and we’ve been stuck on ONE ever since we can remember.
This being the case, it’s important that we find some compassion for ourselves during these turbulent times. We must not beat ourselves up for what we think were major lapses of judgement or just outright regrets. After all, we’re human beings complete with all our greatness, splendor, flaws, imperfections and neuroses to boot.
An important question for us to contemplate during Pluto transits is:
What’s my TRUE identity? If I wasn’t married to ________, dating __________, employed by __________, a (insert religious, cultural, gender or racial affiliation) who would I be?
While ALL of these things may certainly serve as a PART of who we are, somewhere along the line, we decided which one(s) we were most comfortable honing in on, while leaving the others to rot in the corner.
For us, these cycles may indeed signal that we have to either let go or be dragged by the stale energy permeating our beliefs, philosophies, marriages, friendships or associations. Or, it’s a possibility that these things don’t hold the appeal for us that they once did. Maybe we’re not feeling the club, or the 8 to 5 gig anymore. Furthermore, we may not have to completely set these out on the curb for the trash collector, but find ways to renew and revamp them in accordance with who we are at PRESENT.
Whatever semblance of our “old self” that remains during these periods of development is our glimpse of light coming through the window in a room which can be awfully dark at times. We can be sure that its survival was because it’s somehow an ESSENTIAL ingredient to continuing on our life path.
One of the keys to navigating Pluto is to dig DEEP. Yes… we might flinch at what we see. Even jump back in disgust. However, we must look the “monster” straight in the eyes and DEMAND to know what parts of ourselves are intact, with the hopes of using them to put ourselves together in an entirely new way.
Reference: “The Gods of Change: Pain, Crisis and The Transits of Uranus, Neptune and Pluto” by Howard Sasportas