I raised my head. The offing was barred by a black bank of clouds, and the tranquil waterway leading to the uttermost ends of the earth flowed somber under an overcast sky–seemed to lead into the heart of an immense darkness.
– Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness, Part 3
Last week I wrote about how Pluto’s unconscious propensity to compulsion manifests as anxiety promulgated control needs filtered through the lens of those personal planets which are within the Plutonic matrix. This is a term that I use because it describes the manner in which Pluto becomes a systemic driver of behaviour at several levels, emotional, psychological, financial, sexual and so forth. We can understand how this works through reference to a specific example: if we have Pluto connected through a square aspect to Venus then there are anxiety promulgated control needs which are filtered through the Venusian lens. This means that in matters of relating we will exhibit Plutonic compulsions (deep anxiety about abandonment for example), but this same anxiety will manifest in other Venusian areas too: in matters of appearance (a tendency to dress in an overtly Plutonic – or erotic/powerful/wealthy/intense – style), in mattters of finance (a tendency to get involved in financial power-struggles with former romantic partners, or to experience control or lack of control over our finances), in matters of food (a love of rich, dark, sweet foods: chocolate is a good example), and so forth. All Venusian matters are supercharged by Plutonic energy.
When we talk about a ‘matrix’, we do not need to confine ourselves to aspects. Interconnectedness in the nativity is a little like spilt water, it finds the path of least resisitance and where it cannot flow, it will pool and eventually stagnate; which is, in and of itself a Plutonic motif. So while the wide channel of the Plutonic square might be an obvious outlet for that energy, we may not see other more subtle paths of connectedness; these are like underground channels, but they might nonetheless carry copious volumes of Plutonic matter. Rulerships are a good and enormously undervalued mechanism of this type. Any Scorpio planets (or even asteroids) will serve as outlets for Plutonic energy, and thus compulsion. Even stronger is the mutual reception: if you have Sun in Scorpio and Pluto in Leo, Mercury in Scorpio and Pluto in Virgo, Venus in Scorpio and Pluto in Libra and so forth, then you have a vast Plutonic resource in your map, and it will manifest as compulsion at times. Look too for aspects of declination, or strong midpoint pictures involving Pluto, because these also will act as channels for Plutonic energy. For example if you have the midpoint picture Pluto = Sun/Moon, then you can expect to manifest Plutonic energy into your life very strongly indeed. It becomes a component both of security and identity and formulates a key tenet of who we are at a fundamental level. And if we research examples of that picture with considerable precision (Pl = Su/Mo @ Modulus 45° and orb 0°20′) we find:
Captain William Bligh (mutiny is a sincere power-struggle).
Buddy Holly (died in a plane crash age 22).
Muhammad Ali (the most ruthless fighter in the most ruthless of sports).
Maurizio Gucci (gunned down by a hitman hired by his wife who wanted his fortune).
Warren Buffet (a self-made millionaire and financial ‘guru’).
And so forth. What we actually determine from each of these cases is that the midpoint channel marks this individual out for an especial Plutonic focus, but in every case other (and more ‘obvious’) connections in the Plutonic matrix describe the quality of the outlet. Consider each of these cases in that light:
Captain William Bligh has Sun square Pluto: power struggles about leadership.
Buddy Holly has peregrine (unaspected) Pluto: see “On the Peregrination of Pluto and Other Such Tragedies“).
Muhammad Ali has Mars square Pluto: competition, fighting, being the best.
Maurizio Gucci has Venus conjunct Pluto square Mars: violence due to a financial power struggle.
Warren Buffet has Jupiter conjunct Pluto square Venus: financial power as a compensation for inferiority anxiety.
And so forth. This explains why not everyone with Mars square Pluto turns out to be the greatest boxer of his generation. The overground source of Plutonic matter here carries less volume than the underground source (in all likelihood, we might struggle to quantify astrology in this way) and very often we might not be able to see the myriad synapses of the Plutonic matrix in a nativity, even if we see them in a life. I cannot underestimate the import of this insight. People are the living manifestation of the holistic matrix of their entire astrology and they express it through every fibre of their being, so they will express the energy that is most charged in them regardless of what you can or cannot see in their nativity. Once again, they will manifest flowing energy as much as stagnant or pooled energy and Pluto is subject to this, but not directly, he is hidden, so he manifests through the soul wiring of that human life, in this exact manner.
Now, since this is a primer for Pluto, let us examine another truism. There’s no such thing as an easy aspect to Pluto. I have blathered on at exhaustive (and possibly boring) length about the failure of perspective encapsualted in the view that some aspects are good and easy while others are difficult or hard. It simply isn’t true. An aspect is a route between two cities: if a trine, it is a wide, well-paved highway with regular, cheap buses and plenty of picnic areas en route. If a square, it is a narrow, rocky road across a mountain pass that is only open briefly during the summer months, there is a monastery up there and the views are wonderful, but if you’re not prepared for the rigours of that journey, you could get into difficulty. So, which is easier? The first route for sure. Which is better?
Pluto is an impersonal planet, his energy is at that level of divinity which mortals aren’t easily disposed to handle. I hear people say that they love their Pluto. Rubbish. Nobody loves their Pluto, it’s not possible. Such statements are a de facto admission of a failure to grasp the essential quality of Pluto, no matter how many trines there are in the matrix. An easy aspect to Pluto is a wide highway to Pluto City, with regular, cheap buses and all that entails. Because the two cities have a great deal of two way traffic, each city is going to be exposed with far greater frequency and ease to the other’s culture, so you get used to handling Pluto energy, regardless of whether or not it makes you a better person. I would bet that there are more dictators with a Sun – Pluto trine and more elected politicians with the square. The democratic politician learns the hard way how to handle power over others, the tyrant is too easily identified with being in a position of control, the identity is easily Plutonic, they’re comfortable (and that’s the operative word) with just taking the power. An extreme example perhaps, but it serves to convey the fundamental reality of these connections, because both of these examples crave the power, they share that because they share the Sun-Pluto contact.
In part three of this series I’ll be looking at Pluto’s connections to the non-personal planets, Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus. You will learn just how straightforward it is to uncover peoples’ fundamental anxieties and predict the behavioural manifestations that are the result. Ultimately, when you apply that understanding to your own astrology, you’ll be awakened to where Pluto is pulling your strings, and through that insight you’ll very quickly take back control. (If you want to, but that’s another story!)
As ever, the vocational path of an itinerant astrologer is far from luxurious. Reciprocate the love by making a miniscule donation so that I can keep writing joyously about Pluto for your edification and emancipation…
I keep forgetting I have my Pluto at my Sun-Moon midpoint. If you told my mom what it means, she would nod in agreement 🙂
Happy to donate, Jeremy. Thank you for sharing. This was a very cool post.
Confession: The highway with all the cars moving quickly looks very enticing!
Thank you Neeti. You’re so generous in so many ways and that’s why I love you so much. You’re kind of a role model for me.
Your Pl=Su/Mo isn’t too intense, but with a Mo/No conjunct in Scorpio I bet you have an intense mother 🙂
Take care my dear Neeti.
‘Writing joyously about Pluto …’ – most droll.
As for me, the squares hold the vistas, both near and far, I’d rather behold and traverse.
I think squares hold the most potential, but I certainly do appreciate how for somebody with too many of them, trines do have a great appeal 🙂
Thank-you again for another great post.
Your openess, depth and experience come all the way through.
blessings to you and yours,
Thanks Tricia, I’m so glad you’re enjoying the series.
“Pluto is an impersonal planet, his energy is at that level of divinity which mortals aren’t easily disposed to handle.”
Whoa! love this. I have a first house Pluto with aspects to all of my personal planets and Saturn and Neptune. All of my life I have been initiating actions that are divine in nature and terribly hard for my feelings, ego and personality to handle and integrate. I up to this point had been changing my mind and going back on the brave plutonian action and that had been creating some really ugly karma. what I want is to accept and embrace the kinds of divine actions Pluto has me willing to take and welcome the consequences. wish me well!!!
I think you have just the right balance of realism and idealism here. It’s tough but it’s for the best and that’s the only attitude to apply to the Plutonic that has any real value. If it’s not tough then it’s not going to really change anything.
I know a few people with Pluto in the 1st and it’s a high karma burning placement. Good for you, and good luck.
Love, love, love it! I can’t wait for the next article.
My 2nd house Pluto (trine Saturn, sextile Jupiter and Neptune and semi-square Mars) keeps my knickers in a bunch about what I don’t have. I managed to feel just rich enough to depart with a miniscule amount.
Thank you for shedding light. I appreciate you.
Thanks AM and I appreciate it, I hope you’ll find the next article to be especially useful with all that outer-planet energy to Pluto.
I have Mars ssq Neptune too. It’s tricky I know. My Mars is very strong indeed (In Cap. in mr with Saturn by exaltation, Mercury by term and in face too) but Neptune thwarts it every time. You have to learn through ineffectual assertion right? On the other hand, I’m fabulous at standing up for other people…
Ineffectual Assertion!!! And here I thought it was my Pisces moon sq. Jupiter, Neptune, Saturn and opp. Mercury in the 12th. LMAO!
Is loving your Pluto something like Stockholm Syndrome?
Anyway, thanks for the GREAT series. Made a small donation last week. Can’t wait for part 3–I’m one of those 60s babies with Pluto loosely conj. Uranus and Jupiter (and tightly sesquiquadrate Saturn, cause I’m just lucky, I guess). I also have Pluto quintile MC/Mars and biquintile AC and semisquare Sun.
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oh no, i cant find ‘part 1’. i clicked on ‘Earlier’ thinking that meant earlier posts lolol and now i am intrigued about that whole episode 😀 but i think i need to stick to finding part 1.
i will return and check again but just in case, fyi
” I hear people say that they love their Pluto. Rubbish. Nobody loves their Pluto, it’s not possible. Such statements are a de facto admission of a failure to grasp the essential quality of Pluto, no matter how many trines there are in the matrix. ”
Right on! I was thinking this just recently, though that said, I don’t think Pluto is all curse either, as you say very well.
I have a number of Pluto aspects (personal planets and also a Pluto-Saturn conjunction) and also an 8th house stellium and Jupiter in Scorpio. So I live with this energy and it can be a rough ride.
I’m also currently going through a Pluto transit squaring my 8th house moon and it’s all coming right to the surface..
Does anyone have any thoughts on Mars=Moon/Pluto midpoint? I can’t find anything on this, is it important?
Thank you for lively well written and extensive Pluto series. i found you via multiple pluto searches as I find text to convince my sister of the power of Pluto in its contacts with natal planets. she insists Pluto has no weight since its only “slow moving and generational” Ha! Our whole family is plutonic and she has sun conj pluto as well as Scorpio moon! Me? I m the sister with moon conj pluto..so you can see..I am determined to destroy her fixed mindset. Thanks for the ammo!
What would you make of North Node at the midpoint of Uranus and Pluto? Would that be a possibility to release Plutonian control through action? I am seeking for ways that my chart allows to discharge the compulsive energy of Pluto. Compliments on the fascinating analyses, by the way. Your blog is awesome. If I may ask – what is your Chiron placement? – Fixed
Is anybody still here? would love an updated Pluto discussion
I’m mostly self-controling, but i guess i can be projecting. Pluto conj. Mars, Sun and MC, square Jupiter and Moon ( Jupiter opp. Moon), but I’m lucky orb between Pluto and Saturn is 102 (Saturn opp Jupiter) 🙂
As a Plutonian (scorpio rising, pluto square moon in capricorn; square to sun, mercury, saturn in cancer all in thight conjuct; trine venus in 8th house and I have a huge 8th house).
So, I can’t say I love my Pluto, it’s rather my given identity. Would I rather be something else? For a long time I wanted it desperatly to have one of those “normal” identities and put so much effort to be someone else.. But it didn’t work. Now, I am not only accepted all aspects what this situation brings into my life, but I realized what an enormous power, wisdom, knowing this position has delivered to me. No, Pluto is very inconvinient in conventional sense of happiness. But when you realized you are different, emrassed it, stop being obssesed with irrelevant and turn finally sight onto gifts given. I have ability to help people, I can travel in astral realms, I can even see some future! But that’s not what i wanted! I wanted to be NORMAL..and happy..I am still in a process of acceptance that its not my destiny. It will be a process until I die toward fundamental knowledge and enlightment. But I can see it, clearly, it’s not so bad to be not normal. None of it is my personal achivement. I been led by hand since day one and finally I can see little bit of the light at the end of the tunnel. I still fell in old ways sometimes, depression, anger, power struggle, and desparation. I am still only a little human….I used to believe in a lie once I been told ” You are impersonization of a misery, dear!” No, I am impersonziation of a human civilization and humanity is miserable! Maybe by the end of this journey I will know how to bring about some change to it.