Daykeeper Journal Online, Astrology, Consciousness and Transformation

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Pluto and Saturn
by Maya del Mar

I’m sitting here, contemplating Saturn and Pluto, and suddenly I realize that I am wearing black—a black sweater and black pants. For many people this would not be unusual. But me—I just don’t wear black. The last time I wore black was at my mother’s funeral, and before that so long ago that I can’t remember.

Then I realize that I woke up this morning with the intention of writing about Pluto and Saturn, and when I chose my outfit for the day, Pluto and Saturn were on my mind. But I didn’t even connect the dots until this moment.

Pluto’s color is black, with sometimes white thrown in because Pluto understands both sides, life and death. Once, when I worked in an office, ALL 12 co-workers came to work dressed in black. The moon was traveling through Scorpio that day.

Pluto deals with the dark places, the hidden places, the underground places, all those processes which are invisible on the surface of life. Pluto deals with death, and dismemberment, and rotting corpses—the raw material from which new life springs. And Pluto is there at birth as well, like a proud parent. Pluto is the grand recycler. Pluto is the cycle of life itself.

And yet, as much as we think we know about life, it is very mysterious. Its workings are still, for the most part, blacked out, invisible.

Pluto’s domain is deep in the earth, and in the hidden places of society, and of our psyches.

Saturn too is earth-oriented. It deals with earth’s surface, with visible life. The process of a child learning to walk is Saturnian. He/she needs the hard surface of the earth to learn a basic process of coping with life on earth. Saturn represents The Law, the rules of practical management on this earth plane, the boundaries which define our lives.

All of the other planets are subject to illusion and idealization. Not Saturn and Pluto. They bring us the reality of this planet earth, and its black nitty-gritty dirt. However, as we work with them—with the crises and births and deaths and beginnings and endings of Pluto, and the implacable discipline of Saturn—who, like that toddler’s floor, cuts no slack, we become grounded here. We claim our earth heritage, and the sense of authority which it gives us.

There is a deep earth process which describes the work of Saturn and Pluto together. It is diamond-making. Carbon is the most plentiful element in the earth, and it is black. Coal is pure carbon. As this coal undergoes heat and pressure, deep in the earth, for a long time, it can become a diamond, brilliantly reflecting the light. A diamond, too, is carbon.

This is our reward for doing our work on earth. And Saturn and Pluto are our main helpers.

But they are both hard taskmasters. They push us to our limits. They don’t provide comfort. So we, fresh from the womb (metaphorically), often rail against their teachings and shapings.

Pluto transits the U.S. Ascendant

Right now the emphasis is on the United States, for this is the first time in its history that Pluto, master of upheavals, has crossed the U.S. Ascendant. I’ve been speaking about this for the 14 months that we have published Daykeeper online. Refer to the Archives for descriptions, historical background, and time lines, especially November and December 2000, April 2001, and August, September, October, and November, 2001.

When Pluto transits a point in a chart, it brings to that place the secrets, the complexes, the corruption which we have been hiding. It can be ugly and shocking to see our shame exposed, but in the long run what a gift! To bring to light those hidden things so that we can begin the long and difficult work of integrating them into consciousness is an invaluable treasure.

In April 2001, corresponding with Pluto turning retrograde, I noted that the current political scene was bringing to light the corruption of the three branches of U.S. government-- administrative, judicial, and legislative. I further said that

"Pluto turns direct again on August 23, exactly on the U.S. Ascendant. This will be the final and most powerful crossing.

"I suspect that the subject newly exposed this time will be the U.S. shortsighted and imperialistic attitudes towards the world, both its people and its environment. Global warming has been a subject with each of Pluto’s transits, and it may be a climate-change crisis which throws a spotlight on U.S. hubris."

So far it is the 9-11 crisis that is helping us wake up to the rest of the world. But I feel certain that climate changes will become a major issue long before we are through with Pluto in the U.S. first house. Pluto travels slowly, and will be there until 2017, which gives us a fair amount of time for cleanup.

We all have Pluto and Saturn in our charts

This Pluto-Saturn opposition across the U.S. chart is affecting us collectively, and is thus magnified. The whole world gets to experience Pluto-Saturn through the United States' trauma, and especially those of us who live here.

However, we each have Pluto and Saturn in our charts, we each are feeling this transit somewhere, and we are each going through associated personal changes.

All planets and sensitive points between 12-18 degrees of all signs are particularly brought into the action.

I, for instance, have a lifetime of experience with these Pluto and Saturn babies, and I have not always appreciated their work as I do now. In the middle degrees of various signs (around 15 degrees, which is where Pluto is now) I have Sun, Moon, Venus, Mars, Ascendant-Descendant, the Moon’s Nodes—and Pluto and Saturn. All of those personal planets are always touched by Pluto and Saturn, and the whole pantheon is now stimulated by the Pluto-Saturn opposition.

Perhaps the strongest quality I feel about living with Pluto and Saturn is that they are both isolating—from others, not from myself or from spirit. Ultimately, I have to do things myself. Often, it just happens. Even when I don’t intend it or don’t want it, I find myself having to release someone. (Mr. Bush and friends are showing this quality of the loner for the nation, trying in many ways to isolate the U.S.)

Trust and cooperation, also necessary on this earth plane, can be difficult qualities for Pluto and Saturn to embrace.

None of us are strangers to Saturn and Pluto. Many of us have "hard," or challenging aspects of either Saturn or Pluto or both to planets in our natal charts. Those aspects are stirred now by the "hard" aspect between them in the heavens, even disregarding all other connections.

The current opposition was exact for the first time on August 5, 2001, and will be exact for the last time on May 28, 2002. The present action is like a bubbling ferment during these ten months. The months leading up to this period, and following it, are also part of the process of transformation in which we are each now involved.

Saturn is associated with responsibility, work, structure, building, and authority. Pluto is connected with deep change, where something dies and something new is born. The current process is one of deep structural change, in whatever areas are touched by it. (Do chiropractors prosper during a Pluto-Saturn opposition?)

1965-66 was a critical Pluto period

The people who are most touched now by Pluto-Saturn are those born during the last Pluto opposition, from April 1965-February 1966. This period can be spread to include all of 1965 and 1966.

This opposition had Pluto in mid-Virgo, and Saturn opposed it in mid-Pisces. This wasn’t just any Pluto-Saturn opposition. At this same time rebellious Uranus conjoined Pluto, and Maverick Chiron conjoined Saturn. With this combination, there had to be revolution, and there was.

Virgo-Pisces is the polarity of purification, and many icons and false values which society had supported were toppled in 1965-66. This opposition squared the U.S. Ascendant, and lots of corruption, hypocrisy, and instinctual drives began to be exposed and freed—a forerunner to the current Pluto transit of the U.S. Ascendant.

There was great institutional resistance to exposure, as there is now. For example, Pres. Kennedy was killed in 1963, the Warren Report cover-up came out in 1964, and Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King were murdered in 1968.

But for me, for the first time, I felt at home in the world. This was my first Pluto-Saturn opposition as an adult, and I finally felt connected and aware of my place in the world. Oppositions can connect, as well as polarize, and I came home to myself. Pluto and Saturn in tandem brought me the reality of me. In contrast, my world before had been a dream world.

Those babies born then were born into this great revolutionary, purifying cultural milieu. One of those special children was born to me. I didn’t know about astrology then, but I saw Clarke and his friends preparing for two things: electronic warfare, and cleaning up the messes humans were creating.

These 1960s people are not willing to take orders, nor do they accept the status quo without question. They never have. They are utter realists. They are coming into their own now, and probably form the core of activist groups, willing to stand up for their beliefs. Clarke, for one, is a member of the Whole Foods team, and passionate about the purity of the food chain.

The current Saturn-Pluto opposition exactly squares the potent Saturn-Pluto opposition of those people born in 1965-66. This in itself means a huge shift in their life path. In addition, at the same time they experience two very significant aspects--their first adult Saturn square, and their first ever Pluto square. They are now feeling a huge blast of power plus a need for action and a willingness to take on new responsibility. This is a very big turning point for them. Destiny not only knocks, it nearly flattens them. But being Saturn-Pluto people in the first place, they are up for it.

Let’s give a hand to those people born in the mid-sixties. They’ve come in to do hard and important work, and their mission is now unfolding big-time.

To be continued…

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