First things first, watch and listen:
It’s nearly the end of July and we’re all still here, stuck between Saturn and Pluto, with four retrograde planets and Venus approaching a square to Uranus early next week. For non-astrologers this means a whole lot of nothing so let me explain.
Pluto and Saturn have been conjoined in the heavens for the better part of the last two years and will continue to mingle for another year or so. Think siamese twins but of the BDSM variety. This particular transit has been written about ad nauseam by astrologers, (including myself- you can read about it here and here) and much of the prognosticatory assumptions focus on challenges and the transformational growth that occurs from pressure and adversity (this is the best remedy for those days). This is not simply because astrologers are soothsaying doomsday predictors but historically speaking when these two planets get together in the sky there is an overflowing abundance of adversity in the lives of many. For a thorough and sober look at this phenomenon read Rick Tarnas’ Cosmos and Psyche, specifically chapter five. So, if you’ve had a rough year, you’re not alone. And you’re also not in the clear yet.
Saturn is itself a slow moving planet and was recognized by the ancients as the edge of our known cosmos. Its roughly 30 year cycle means the lessons we are supposed to learn unfold slowly over the course of a year or two at pertinent moments during its cycle. See your local astrologer (or your’s truly) for more about your chart specifically. Saturn however is not the big driver of our current plight. For that we turn to Pluto, the furthest reaches of our cosmos, the slowest moving planet that circles our same life-giving sun, and the most effective teacher any of us will have a chance to learn from. But you have to pay attention, which is increasingly difficult the longer the transit drags on.
Pluto is messy. Pluto likes being messy. Pluto has no intention of keeping things tidy or orderly and in this fact is Pluto’s greatest lesson. When the house is burning down you don’t plan what you’re going to take. You act out of primal instinct and passion for the life you have, the people you share it with, and the future you refuse to give up even when everything is falling down around you. Without the mess, the burning house, the loss, we would never have the opportunity to discover what actually matters. Insecurity is a big part of Pluto’s gift to us. It is uncomfortable and a burden the vast majority of us would rather not carry but during these times we are forced to do so fairly frequently. But in our insecurity we find ourselves. The fear of loss, neglect, betrayal, disaster is ultimately the path to preparedness, but more importantly, it is a call to self-reliance, to cosmic trust, and to evolution. A Pluto transit is not a mess we can tidy-up by hiring a cleaner. It is a complete and total burning down the house. Joined with Saturn, the impulse to immediately rebuild is strong, but the ashes and dust have hidden treasures that must be exhumed before moving on. Do not clean up just yet.