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Pluto through Capricorn 2008-2024

Glastonbury towerThis image is The Tower card from the Glastonbury Tarot, a much less frightening image than the Tower in other decks. The Tower in the Tarot signifies destruction and rebuilding of the established order, which is exactly what Pluto in Capricorn is all about.

It’s too easy to get caught up in the distress of change and the sense that things are falling apart around us, and we often forget that from the ashes there is a new and usually improved reality that arises in its place.  That is why I like this Phoenix image representing the emergence of something new out of the ashes of destruction.

Part I: Introduction

Although Pluto is a small planet (in fact, it is now classified as a dwarf planet) it packs a powerful punch. Pluto represents death and endings and the breakdown of the structures in our life that are required in order to bring transformation and fresh beginnings. Pluto brings us face to face with the ultimate reality of life and, watching over us like a shamanic guardian, destroys whatever stands in the way of our soul’s ultimate destination.

Pluto’s passage through the signs brings with it a compulsive fascination in the issues denoted by that sign. He ruthlessly exposes the darkness that lies at the core of the sign’s archetypes and, destroying the old order, demands that we rebuild on the ashes of the old. Like the Phoenix bird with which it is associated, Pluto dies and is regenerated to begin anew.

Pluto has been traveling through Sagittarius since 1995, bringing with it wars (Pluto) over religion and ideology (Sagittarius), as well as “culture wars” and the growing divide between groups that think differently, all Sagittarius archetypes. Sagittarius rules the media and entertainment, and the rise of a new compulsivity in celebrity journalism has grown up since Pluto entered Sagittarius, with the internet spawning a huge new gossip market. Sagittarius carries with it a nearly relentless optimism; ruled by Jupiter with its expansive need for growth, Pluto in Sagittarius has seen soaring home prices and a burgeoning stock market that seems to have no end. The “new economy” of the dot com era occurred under Pluto’s Sagittarian influence, as did the explosion of the vacation home market.

Pluto transits typically include a breakdown phase, where structures that no longer serve us are dismantled to make room for new structures that are more in line with our spiritual evolution. I like to think of these periods as course corrections, where our guides or gods decide that certain changes are required. If we understand the process and can surrender to it with trust, this can be an exhilarating time of transformation and empowerment. If we resist and hold on to the past it can be full of tragedy and pain.

Capricorn is the sign of the builder, the achiever. Capricorn is rooted in the material world and understands that life on earth requires a practical approach to the matters of earning a living. There is also a drive for success; to climb the highest mountains like the goat which is it’s symbol. For Capricorn, the ends justify the means and achievement of one’s goals is the important thing and it is able to maintain a powerful focus.

Its rulership by Saturn gives respect for discipline and authority and Capricorn has tremendous respect for governmental structures and the stability of a moral system. However, Saturn also bestows its tendency towards pessimism and lack of humor as all things personal are sacrificed for the goal. There is often a tendency to prize material things above those of the emotional or spiritual realms, and this lack of balance can create a dry and miserable experience.

When Pluto goes through Capricorn we can expect the transformation of all things ruled by that sign – such as our religious institutions, halls of government and political structures, the way we inter our dead and take care of our old people, construction techniques and buildings, and how we handle ownership of property.

While Pluto takes 244 years to orbit the Sun, its elliptical orbit means that it doesn’t spend the same amount of time in each sign. For example, it only took twelve years to travel through Scorpio, but it took 26 years to get through Cancer and 19 years through Leo. Pluto will be in Capricorn until 2024, and this occurs at a time when our Capricornian structures are ripe for transformation. Industry (Capricorn) in developed and developing countries as become a major source of carbon emissions which threaten the survival of life on earth. The Catholic Church (Capricorn), rocked by sex scandals, is struggling for survival. The very way we do business (Capricorn) is being forever changed by the globalization of politics and the economy.

Part II: The Historical View

Pluto will enter Capricorn for the first time January 25, 2008 and will retrograde back into Sagittarius one final time on June 14. It will journey back into Capricorn on November 26, 2008 and remain there until January 21, 2024. For sixteen years, Pluto will engage in a process of breaking down and then rebuilding the structures on which we depend for a successful experience in the material world.

There is a natural evolution to the path of the planets through the zodiacal signs as each sign offers a completely different experience than the sign before. In Sagittarius, Pluto has been compulsively expansive and optimistic, intensifying religious fervor – all qualities of Sagittarius. In Capricorn, Pluto seeks to contract and solidify and build solid structures for society. In the process, the structures that already exist are broken down and irrevocably transformed

breakupPluto was last in Capricorn from November 1762 until December 1, 1778. Pluto deals with transformation of the political and economic realities of our world, and its entry into Capricorn marked the end of the Seven Years’ War in which France ceded Canada to Britain, but political unrest was felt throughout Europe as well as in the Colonies and this period marked a reconfiguration of many of the nations in the world. Catherine the Great acceded to the throne after the murder of her husband, perhaps at her own hand, and presided over wars with the Ottoman Empire that resulted in Russian acquisition of much of the Turkish lands. The first partition in Poland occurred during this period which split Poland into three sections owned by Russia, Prussia and Austria. Britain traded Cuba to Spain in exchange for Florida; Parliament passed the Stamp Act to pay for the wars that began the Colonial rebellion that resulted in the American Revolution.

The thirst for revolution in France, England and Russia stemmed from a reaction to the breakup and reconfiguration of world nations (Capricorn) that followed the colonial expansion (Sagittarius) that preceded it. Pluto’s previous passage through Capricorn back in 1516-1533 c.e. was preceded by the original exploration of the New World that gave rise to the later Colonial ideals. Once the original explorers had returned to the courts of Europe, under Pluto in Capricorn those countries set out to conquer the New World and create new colonies that were subservient to the European rulers. The rise of anti-Catholic sentiment that brought about the rise of Protestants under Pluto in Sagittarius gave way to Martin Luther’s formalizing his revolt with his nailing his Thesis to the door of the Church in 1517 under Pluto in Capricorn, founding a new structure of worship, the Lutheran Church.

Part III:  What can we expect in the future?

Although Pluto will enter Capricorn for the first time in January 2008infrastructure, it will retrograde back into the late degrees in Sagittarius in June 2008 where it will make one final sweep through the Sagittarian issues of religion, philosophy, travel, ideology, journalism, optimism, and general expansion. Throughout 2008 it will be virtually stationary, traveling less than three degrees during this period, from 1 degree Capricorn back through 28 degrees Sagittarius. Because it will be stationary for so long, where its influence is the most powerful, I would expect a great deal of intensity and forced transformation during this period. This will be particularly intense for those of us who have planets in the late degrees of the mutable signs (Virgo, Pisces, Sagittarius, Gemini) or the early degrees of the cardinal signs (Capricorn, Cancer, Aries Libra).

Pluto causes endings and new beginnings – it forces us to surrender as it rebuilds us from the inside out. I suspect that throughout next year the intense optimism of Pluto in Sagittarius will battle with the necessity for realism of Pluto in Capricorn, and it will be a while before the economic problems really hit home. Mars will oppose Pluto in early March, which will create some fireworks of aggression and confrontation, and Saturn will make its second trine to Pluto in April which will ease the challenge of the new requirements of Capricorn Pluto which wants to tear down and rebuild the structures of our life and planet and intensify the power bases that govern society.

Once Pluto is firmly entrenched in Capricorn beginning in December 2008, we will begin to really see it at work. This of course will follow the US presidential election in November 2008. Pluto seeks to focus and intensify as well as break down and regenerate. The structures of our world keep societies in order and functioning: churches, governments, buildings – all of these are ruled by Capricorn. But so are bridges and tunnels, and the entire infrastructure upon which we live, particularly in urban areas, are likely to experience a severe breakdown while Pluto travels through Capricorn. Underground transportation, under the domain of the god of the underworld, could become a battleground as Pluto often brings warfare or death in the areas of the sign through which it passes (such as September 11th during Pluto in Sagittarius, where air travel became a conveyance of death and total world transformation).

During the passage of Pluto, we see extremes and compulsions in the area of life associated with the sign through which Pluto travels, and with the Capricornian association with governments and government buildings I would expect a worldwide attempt to solidify a global government and minimize individual liberties. Pluto deals with issues of power – on a personal level such as personal empowerment as well as with the power structures that govern all of humanity that fall under the rubric of the Capricorn theme. When Uranus enters Aries in 2010-2011, there will be a fervor as the pendulum swings back towards individual liberties. By the time Uranus forms a square to Pluto in Capricorn in 2012-2013 there will be tremendous cultural, social and political upheaval which will further transform governments and political structures.

Pluto’s reach will extend beyond governments, however. Capricorn also rules the elderly and end of life issues, and Pluto’s passage through Capricorn could transform the way we view the entire process of death and dying, including the disposal of the body after death.

Often Pluto’s passage through one sign is a reaction to Pluto’s passage through the previous sign, and in Capricorn there may be a reaction of the practical and materialistic Capricorn against the ideological idealism of Pluto’s travel through Sagittarius. An overdose of pragmatism could lead to the negativity and depression with which Capricorn is sometimes associated. Capricorn is associated with achievement and can be ruthless in its efforts to climb to the top, and we could see an increased obsession (Pluto) with climbing the ladder of success that leads to a breakdown in certain segments of society.

There is always a side to Pluto cycles, and in Capricorn we are likely to see an increase in stability and a more practical approach to economics and business than we saw under the Sagittarian influence. The inflated (Sag) bonuses for CEOs that we saw in recent years are likely a sign of the past as businesses and corporations become more concerned with Capricornian fundamentals than with Sagittarian appearance and image. Capricorn is essentially practical and prizes achievement above all else, which means achievement of real goals and objectives. Although Pluto in Capricorn will bring out secrets (Pluto) of governments and other political entities (Cap), there will be an increased focus on proficiency, skill, and a successful outcome rather than spin and propaganda of the Sagittarian era.

I don’t know about you, but all of that sounds to me like a great improvement and to which I am looking forward!

By | 2007-12-14T13:01:00+00:00 December 14th, 2007|Featured posts, Longreads, Pluto in Capricorn|Comments Off on Pluto through Capricorn 2008-2024

Moving from the Age of Pisces to the Age of Aquarius


As a species, we are currently crossing from the Age of Pisces into the Age of Aquarius. Although many people consider the Age of Pisces to begin at year 0 with the birth of Jesus with Aquarian Age beginning at 2000, most astronomers agree that the Age of Pisces actually begin in year 498 C.E., indicating entry into Aquarius in 2658 C.E.

Under the Age of Pisces we have seen the Piscean archetypes of sacrifice of the individual ego, universal love and compassion, assimilation, and the more negative projections of illusion, fantasy and delusion. Each astrological age has been represented by a deistic pantheon; the end of each age is marked by the ending of the worship of that pantheon. The Piscean Age has been marked by the growth of the three major monotheistic religions, each of which claims to be the only correct one, and the attempted dissolution of the individual ego. As we move from the Piscean age into Aquarius, the awakener, we are being shown that the Emperor doesn’t have any clothes, that any unreality upon which we have based our religious foundations will be shattered in the upcoming years. The ideas in The Da Vinci Code have been around for 2000 years, but they are only now erupting into the public awareness. What will this mean for humanity?

The equatorial bulge of the earth causes a shifting in the earth’s axis and the point at which the Sun at the vernal equinox points to the zodiacal constellations. This phenomenon is known as the “” and creates the period of 25,920 years that we call the “Great Year.” The “Great Year” is divided into twelve “Great Ages” each of approximately 2160 years. Because of the “orb of influence,” or “orb,” which describes the fact that a change in sign makes itself known several degrees before the actual change (also known as the “cusp”), there is some flexibility to the 2160 figure.

While the Great Ages certainly go back to the formation of the Earth itself, the Ages that are known to us are:

Age of Leo: 10,300-8,140 BCE. Modern scientific techniques, looking at erosion patterns, agree with the great sage Edgar Cayce, who dated the great Sphinx of Egypt back to a period of great rains in that country, something which hasn’t happened since the end of the ice age (typically considered to be 10,500 BCE). Although little is known of this period, it could have presided over a “Golden Age” (Leo rules gold) where the Sun was worshipped as the primordial god of light and life.

Age of Cancer: 8,140-6,000 BCE. Cancer is the sign of the Moon and the Mother, and this Age corresponded to the worship of the Great Goddess and the Moon. Cancer is a water sign, and many scientists believe that this period corresponded to the end of the ice age and the Great Deluge of myth that resulted from catastrophic melting of glaciers. As humans began to form tribes they became more concerned with family groupings and geneaology, another hallmark of Cancer. Women were considered the source of creation since they bore the children.

Age of Gemini: 6,000-3,800 BCE. Gemini rules communication and speech, and this age saw the development of the first written languages and establishment of villages. The cult of Twin Gods in creation myths began during this period (twins represented the masculine and feminine principle). The wheel and plough are invented (Gemini rules thoughts and ideas), aiding in the spread of agriculture.

Age of Taurus: 3,800-1,660 BCE. Agriculture (Taurus is ruled by the Earth and Venus) makes its way throughout cultures in the Americas, Africa and Asia. The first temples were built in Mesopotamia and the first jewelry and aesthetic objects (Venus) are created. Bull cults (Taurus is symbolized by the bull) were dominant in Greece and Egypt, and the worship of the more sexualized goddess Innana/ Ishtar/ Ashtoreth also became popular.

The Age of Aries (1,662 BCE – 498 CE) was the Age of the Hero and the Warrior. The eruption of the volcano Santorini in 1680 destroyed the Minoan civilization and along with it their Bull cult (age of Taurus). This age was marked synchronistically by the Indo-Aryan (Aries) migration and the beginnings of cattle domestication (conquering the Bull god). Rituals of the Mithraic cult involved slaughtering of bulls, which has come down to us today as the bullfight. The gods of the Age of Aries, as in each age before them, eradicated the gods that preceded them.

Little is known about the origins of the Aryan people, but they were warriors possessing military technology superior to that of their neighbors, facilitating their takeover of much of Asia during this period. The Arien Age also witnessed the first Olympic games in Greece and the development of the Greek and Roman empire. The Hero archetype was central to the Greek and Roman cultures, with their gods who were constantly doing battle. Yahweh, the god of the Jewish people who gained prevalence during this time, combined characteristics of both the Warrior and the Hero. He demanded the transformation of the Hero in his disciple Abraham, and advised on military conquests.

Finally our own Age of Pisces (498 – 2,658 CE ), symbolized by the Fish, and representing the Sacred descending to the Mundane world. Pisces rules universal compassion, sacrifice of the individual Ego, and martyrdom. Pisces is a feminine sign, yet during the reign of Pisces we have seen the suppression and re-emergence of the feminine, and no story tells this quite as dramatically as the transformation of Mary Magdalene, the real story behind The DaVinci Code. The Church recently admitted that Mary Magdalene was not a prostitute but a true follower. However, when the Nag Hammadi scrolls were discovered and translated, it was revealed that Mary was more than a follower but an actual apostle, giving rise anew to theories of Mary having been wife to Jesus.

The story of the life and death of Jesus the Christ and the evolution of the religion that bears his name mirrors the Piscean age perfectly. Pisces is sign of the water element, and the origin of Christianity finds Jesus being baptized in a river, symbolizing the dissolution of the personal ego into the river of faith, a ritual that continues today. Even in pre-Christian times, the sacred wells of the British Isles were places where the gods and goddesses would be present. The teachings of Jesus express the Piscean values of compassion, universal love and brotherhood. However, last 2000 years have not always expressed those concepts in their highest form.

Art by Marius Fine Art


The call for the end of individualism and the necessity for blind belief that marks the evolution of the Piscean age has led to the more negative manifestation of Pisces: illusion and delusion. The famed Dark Ages in western civilization occurred because the ruling Roman Catholic Church wanted to suppress all knowledge and keep their adherents in the literal darkness. At that time the realm of knowledge spread to the Arab world, which is now in its own Dark Age.

The date for the end of the Piscean age is in much dispute. As earlier discussed, most would like the Ages to fit into a nice 2000 year package which would put us squarely in the beginning of the Aquarian age. However, astronomical calculations tell us that this is not true, and that the Aquarian age technically will not begin until approximately 2600 CE. Regardless, we are in the last decan of Pisces and moving away from the Pisces influence of sacrifice of the individual ego. As the Piscean mists begin to separate, the knowledge and understanding that Aquarius demands is beginning to make itself known.

The religion of Christianity is built around the death and resurrection of Jesus, yet for 2000 years that very tenet has been in doubt. The four gospels each tell a completely different story of the end of the life of Jesus, and there are no details of the resurrection. As with much of the Christian story (and I mean no offence to Christians here), the story of the resurrection must be taken on faith. There are some questions as to whether Jesus even died on the cross – a mysterious individual named Simon the Cyrene offered to carry Jesus’s cross, and some theorize that it was Simon that actually died on the cross and not Jesus. Others question whether the “vinegar and gall” given to Jesus wasn’t snake venom that caused him to fall into a swoon, thereby fooling the Romans into thinking he had died when in fact he was in a deep unconscious state. Pontius Pilate “marvelled if he were already dead” and changed the established procedure of leaving him on the cross to be eaten by carrion, but instead authorized that his body be brought down to leave in his tomb. Many believe that Jesus and Mary were then spirited out of Jerusalem and taken to Europe where they lived happily ever after.

For centuries these ideas were suppressed and their adherents tortured and murdered for heresy, but in the 20th century these ideas began to spring forth anew such as the book . First published in 1982, this book was a cult classic until the Dan Brown’s novel “The Da Vinci Code” appeared on the scene. Evidently the collective consciousness is now ready to absorb these ideas and begin to examine the truth that lies behind the faith.

As we enter the Aquarian Age, what will our new gods be? Aquarius rules technology and radical thought, invention and ascension. The last Aquarian age (around 28,000 BC) marked the end of the Neanderthal and the birth of Cro Magnon man. Will our species be similarly transformed over the next 2500 years? We can try to predict the future, but life has a way of evolving in a way that we cannot imagine.

By | 2006-05-25T10:46:00+00:00 May 25th, 2006|Age of Aquarius, Featured posts, Longreads|Comments Off on Moving from the Age of Pisces to the Age of Aquarius
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