By Christine Springer
In today's post, I'm going to talk about Pluto transits and how I survived them. As I mentioned previously, one of the reasons I began studying astrology was to be able to adjust my expectations when it came to events unfolding in my life.
The other thing I realized in studying astrology is that while astrology is good at predicting time frames, it can be difficult to prepare or cope during hard transits.
Since I am an Aries ascendant and Cancer sun, I have had a square to my ascendant/descendant (which are places on your chart -- not planets) and because Pluto is in Capricorn, it has also opposed four of the five natal planets I have at the bottom of my natal chart.
How each planet aspects (connects) with the planet in your natal chart characterizes the nature of the transit. Squares and oppositions tend to be difficult periods of time where you will be required to work through something. I have observed that Pluto conjunctions are also hard transits because Pluto is a heavy energy.
Trines and sextiles generally are easier, flowing energy that do not usually require action. I have noticed that when a trine involves Pluto, the energy stays in the higher octave of Pluto's energy.
There are also other types of angles/aspects that other astrologers use that I have not yet studied. The ones I have mentioned here are the major aspects and work well in terms of understanding this transit.
Pluto's energy has several themes. My understanding is based purely on my own experience of these transits, which is probably normal and also depends on what else is happening in your chart.
Pluto's main themes are sex, death, destruction, obsession, secrets, and the use of power. The higher octave of Pluto's energy would be transformation, but that doesn't necessarily make the "death" any easier.
Since I have my ascendant in Aries and my Sun in Cancer and Pluto is transiting Capricorn, I have experienced six Pluto transits recently:
Pluto square Ascendant
Pluto square Venus
Pluto square Moon
Pluto square Mercury
Pluto square Saturn
Pluto square Pluto
Next up will also be a Pluto opposition to my natal Sun at 25 degrees of Cancer, which I suspect is already underway because of the transits to the other planets in Cancer.
Some of these transits happened before I really dug into Pluto, but the major theme here is a massive death of many aspects of who I was before they happened.
My experience of Pluto square Ascendant was intense, which is really the hallmark of a Pluto square.
It's really easy to become paranoid during these transits. I felt like staying home and being by myself most of the time, and I found it hard to have superficial social contact. I belonged to a gym at the time, and although I loved it there, I just never felt like part of the community there.
I also had periods where I would obsessively organize things and subsequently get rid of tons of stuff. Pluto's influence will REALLY make you want to pare down. I also found myself emptying out my freezer to use up what's in there, so I'd make some random meals using what I had on hand.
Other than these experiences, I did not really experience much "death" from the square to my ascendant.
Perhaps the most upsetting period of time has been Pluto's opposition to my 4th house. I've had three family members die from cancer, and relationships have been radically altered as a result. A family member is having a Pluto conjunction and my relationship with them has essentially died, cutting me off from them. This person doesn't seem interested in being a part of my life anymore unless I make all the effort.
And since Pluto is opposing my 4th house, we've had plumbing problems and nearly everything in my rental home related to water (washing machine, pool pump, hose faucet) has broken down since we've lived here. I am also unhappy with the way my rental home looks, because the paint is peeling, there are woodpecker holes and an ugly fence. While property values are going up, the landlord doesn't want to paint or make the house look any better.
Some of these observations creep up on you. Pluto is very subtle and you could find yourself on a weird, obsessive downward spiral about how your life is going down a *hithole and you are powerless to stop it.
This brings me to the power theme and how it played out.
Here's an example: we just had a New Moon in Cancer on the 4th of July weekend and it was a doozy.
Whenever Pluto is activated by an aspect/angle from another planet, I can pretty much count on someone at home getting sick, something breaking, some drama or some other problem related to my home life because the 4th house rules home, family and your foundation.
Since Capricorn is my 10th house of career and status, Pluto is causing all these problems at home to make me re-think my career and home life and find some balance in between. This transit makes it difficult for me to leave the house at times because there is typically a lot going on here that makes it difficult to physically leave my home.
This is one time where astrology comes in handy: to predict something happening! I can clear my schedule and just be ready to respond to what happens. I did not make any plans over the holiday weekend for that reason, and I am glad that I kept things unscheduled. Also, not scheduling a lot of things also allows you down time to process whatever does happen.
The other issue that I noticed during the 4th of July weekend and New Moon were a couple of power struggles.
The first was with a client who got angry and refused to pay a bill. I have been dealing with these little power struggles for awhile now and I recognized the situation for what it was.
This was a newer client, and we had not been working together for very long. I realized that he was tying up 20 -30 hours of my time each week, was very demanding on turnaround time, and then taking three to four weeks to pay under the guise of a "regular paycheck."
When I finally realized what was going on, I thanked him for the opportunity to reflect on how I want to run MY business, and told him I would do a better job of managing my own schedule to see if his work fit in with my earning needs.
The client blew a gasket! He got angry with me, even though I was not confrontational. I thought about it before I hit send just to double-check that I wasn't intentionally coming across as angry.
The client basically told me "take it or leave it." I decided to leave it because his pay schedule and demands for turnaround time did not fit with how I wanted to run my business. If I wanted a "regular paycheck" I would go get a job.
The client was REALLY nasty, saying that I was "a dishonest woman" and that it would catch up with me. I thought his response was WAY overblown, especially for a man and I remember thinking he must not be feeling well or something else was going on. It just didn't make sense that he was so angry.
The important thing to recognize about Pluto transits is that someone always loses these power struggles. When you are at least aware of them, you can choose to engage or disengage. Since I run a legal services company, I had no problem with the idea of taking this client to small claims court to collect the balance of what he owed me, but I made a conscious decision to let it go.
He took another three weeks to pay me, and then he only paid a third of what he owed. My intuition said to DEPOSIT THE CHECK AND MOVE ON, despite my ego screaming that the guy was an *sshole and needed a lesson.
This is where it gets interesting: a few days after I deposited the check with the intention of moving on, the CLIENT DIED! A mutual acquaintance called to tell me about his death and I was shocked.
At the same time, I realized that I had made the right decision in letting go, because I would have never collected anyway.
And, it was not lost on me that he died around the time of the Pluto opposite New Moon.
I had another issue (power struggle) that weekend with a neighbor shooting fireworks at my house.
I have to laugh again at the themes here: this is another power struggle (the neighbor is still mad over an incident that happened over a bulk trash pickup months ago) and the aggression (fireworks) were aimed at my home (4th house theme). Fortunately, the neighbor's wife has enough sense for the both of them, and she made him come inside the house because she thought we might call the police.
I did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. I could have confronted him, but I was aware of the energies and made a conscious decision not to engage him. It was simply not worth my time and energy to engage in his drama. So I just ignored him.
One more thing I want to mention is that Pluto transits, like most of the outer planets, take awhile. Pluto moves about 2 to 3 degrees per year, and so these Plutonian themes will be on your radar for awhile.
In the case of the opposition to my 4th house -- that is an ongoing transformation that will last for the full cycle that Pluto transits Capricorn -- about 20 years!
I have some tips for how I got through these transits.
First: The first thing I wanted to know was "how long is this going to last?"
Get out your natal chart and look where your planets are. Refer to an ephemeris table, which tells you which degrees the planets will transit (cross over) during the year you choose. Be sure to scroll down through the whole year, because planets may go retrograde and pass over the SAME degrees three times and those will likely be the times you will notice the most intensity.
TWO: be proactive and make sure you have enough resources to get you through the transitions. If Pluto aspects or transits your 8th house or your 2nd house especially, you can probably count on changes to your finances. the 2nd house is earned income (from your jobs or businesses) and the 8th is other people's money (taxes, inheritance, loans, etc.)
THREE: Consider the planet in your chart that it will aspect, too.
For example: Venus also rules love and money so you may find finances tight or you aren't having success in dating or relationships during that time.
The Moon represents our mother, and anytime Pluto aspected my natal moon, there was an issue with my Mom or her health that I needed to be involved in.
Mercury rules the mind and communication, and so you might find yourself interested in some deep subjects. I don't really recall anything specific from this transit, except I probably saw meaning in things people said that weren't really how the person intended.
Saturn represents your father in your chart, and he's also the taskmaster. He wants you to put in the time required for awhile before you see the results. I will also be writing a post about Saturn transit survival, too because I've had quite a few of those too. I think Saturn Pluto aspects can be volatile, but I didn't really notice much happening during this transit. Again -- I have several planets sitting nearby so it's possible that many of the Plutonian themes are being blended together.
Mars represents your drive to get things done, and masculine energy. I haven't experienced a Pluto - Mars transit yet so it's hard to comment on this. You can google themes of how Pluto aspects to other planets if they aren't mentioned in this post.
FOUR: You'll want to look for themes by house and sign, too. I shared the example of the opposition from my 10th to 4th house, but depending on where Pluto is transiting in your chart, the themes may be different. I plan to write a post on the houses and themes there, too.
FIVE: Be aware of the power struggles and take the high road unless it's REALLY worthwhile to fight for something.
Sometimes, Pluto teaches us how to stay in our power by not letting people walk on us. You'll have to decide, but I'd suggest you avoid the lower vibrational tiffs with other people who want to fight with you.
Walk away unless it's really important or you notice a theme where you need to be in your power. Even then, you don't have to rip the other person apart. Be mindful of your ego and take the high road.
SIX: If you can, streamline your life and simplify things. Chances are, Pluto will make you feel like doing this anyway.
SEVEN: Feng shui your living space and get rid of clutter and things you don't need. If you don't feel like doing this preemptively, don't worry too much -- Pluto will help you release things that are not working for you anymore.
EIGHT: Lynn Koiner wrote the only post that I've seen about surviving a Pluto transit, and she says Pluto can affect your adrenals because the energy is so heavy. Pay attention to your health and address those issues. She has even more tips in her post, so check out her post, too.
NINE: Learn to differentiate between depression and things that are superficially upsetting. I noticed that I sometimes saw things as a much bigger problem than they were. Also, I had a tendency to withdraw into myself, and it's easy to slip into a dark hole with these transits. Remember that you are doing heavy transformative work on yourself during these transits. You might not see the results until long after the transit is over.
TEN: Anticipate a seesaw of events. Things might be up and down as you work to find a balance. You might not do very well at balance during the transit, so take it easy on yourself. I have noticed that during some transits, the things that need to happen are totally out of my control.
I've heard some astrologers say certain transits are a good time to do certain things, but I have found with Pluto (and Saturn) that I am frequently just stuck because I don't have the resources to move forward.
ELEVEN: Pluto transits can be a great time for your sex life. If this is something you want to explore, set an intention for the energy and direct it toward the part of your life you want to shift.
Of course, you could also meet a obsessive bunny boiler at this time (lol) but hopefully you can work with your sexual energy with an enlightened partner. Consider a joint intention for your energies and see what happens!
I hope you enjoyed this post, and it helps you navigate your Pluto transit!