After spending what seemed like an eternity in Hades ripped away from all you previously held dear and stripped naked of any pretense or false assumption about who you truly are at your core, you emerge from this prolonged Dark Period newly reborn. The haters and those who once sought to subjugate you now crushed like dirt under your shoe as you come into your own and claim your power. Congratulations, you’ve just made it through hell and back – as the last vestiges of flame lick at your back, take a moment to fully appreciate the newfound strength this Razing has stoked within you. Arise; you have just received the ultimate in astrological empowerment!
Continuing our contemplation of Pluto in Capricorn transits, there is yet another invaluable angle to consider if this body contacts a planet or point in our personal astrological chart. In addition to being deeply interior, Plutonic energies also represent a kind of breaking down process so that healthy renewal might take place. When we pause to reflect upon Capricorn’s association with protection and defenses, we see how this energy can relate to the beneficial destruction of psychological walls, barriers, etc. that we may have knowingly or unconsciously put up to keep people at a safe distance. I will explain –
Whenever we endure some kind of trauma or negative experience in life, sometimes it’s possible to harden over and develop this self-protective “crust”. The psyche develops this shell to function like shield or armor; to guard us from something that on some level may have seemed to threaten our very existence. While originally intended as a sort fail-safe mechanism to limit the level of devastation we experience, sometimes the perimeter wall becomes a bit extreme, as in a “No trespassing: Intruders will be shot” kind of thing. What once triggered a “normal” survival instinct actually becomes pathological, where we become afraid of real intimacy.
I believe one function of transiting Pluto in Capricorn touching a natal planet or point may be to show us how this kind of exoskeleton is obsolete; that a transit from Pluto in Capricorn can actually illuminate any kind of PTSD-like response so that we can learn to control it and let time and experience serve as a guide in determining when and with whom it’s safe to drop our defenses a bit and expose what we would otherwise be inclined to keep hidden under lock & key. It’s about learning to parse “normal” survival instincts that serve a legitimate function and that keep us safe from the ones that have – through no particular fault of our own – become twisted.
There is always strong resurrection potential whenever we are dealing with Pluto energy. But first we have to be willing to burn off all the dross….
You are having a Lunar-flavored Pluto-in-Capricorn transit if any one of the following applies:
Pluto in Capricorn comes into contact w/ your Moon
Pluto in Capricorn rolls over your IC/through your 4th House
Pluto in Capricorn opposes your Sun, Moon, or other significant planets you may have in the sign of Cancer
And, to a lesser extent:
If Pluto in Capricorn comes into contact w/ the planet that rules your 4th House/IC
With Pluto in Capricorn affecting a Lunar area of the chart, psychologically digging around in old, family-of-origin -related “stuff” may be in order for the sake of unearthing anything potentially dysfunctional that may still have a hold on the psyche and burying it for good. Funny this song came on while contemplating my own Lunar-flavored Pluto-in-Capricorn transit…I found the both the song title – “Roots” – and the lyrics disconcertingly apt:
“I know it’s gotta go like this, I know… Hell will always come before you grow… Trouble found me, trouble found me….
I’m going back to my roots Another day Another door Another high Another low Rock bottom, rock bottom, rock bottom….”
I’ve been musing about Pluto’s long transit through Capricorn (until 2023) and its effects upon an individual chart; especially when we have personal planets or points being contacted by this astrological heavy hitter. One thing that occurred to me is the importance of metaphorical “deco stops” throughout our (individual and collective) Pluto in Capricorn journey. Deco stops – scuba diving slang for “decompression stops” – are a technique utilized by divers who descend to great depths. The further down a diver swims, the more intense the pressure exerted upon their bodies. This pressure causes the gasses they breathe through their air tanks to expand as they ascend, and if they try to rise to the surface too quickly and aren’t careful, this abrupt change in pressure can cause the gasses to create tiny bubbles in the bloodstream; a potentially life-threatening condition known as decompression sickness or “The Bends”.
To avert this, divers deliberately slow down their ascent and pause at marked depth intervals for a specified period of time, waiting until their body gradually decompresses at each stop as they return to more normal pressures. The body needs time to acclimate to this transition, for it is not naturally designed to withstand these kinds of forces and then just bob right back up to the surface; no – it needs time to assimilate the intensity of this experience before it can return to operating as normal.
This is not unlike dealing with Pluto in Capricorn…if we think of a Pluto transit as a symbolic journey to our Center – all the way down to the very core of our souls – we can start to see how this metaphor has resonance. When we experience Pluto in Capricorn contacting a planet or personal point in our chart, what we are dealing with is some heavy-duty, industrial-strength transformation somewhere in our lives. The changes and challenges we encounter along the way can be profound – often, an old “life” or old way of being “dies” in some way. Our physical, emotional, psychological, and energetic bodies therefore require time to process the intense experiences that are part and parcel of this metamorphosis; we need metaphorical “deco stops” as we make our preparations to ascend back into the Light.
It is understandable that when one spends a prolonged period of time in the Underworld, one might then find themselves in a rush to return to the surface and feel sunlight upon their face, for Pluto in Capricorn is the epitome of dense and heavy…at times its energy can feel like concrete cinder blocks that may threaten to drag us toward a cold, dark, bottom. Proper integration is essential for this reason; especially on a psychological level. We must therefore begin our ascent slowly and carefully, periodically checking our watches to ensure that we are spending enough time at each and every stop (hmmm…perhaps this entails processing loss to a degree, à la the Kubler-Ross 5 stages of grieving) on the journey upward. These pauses should be thought of as a time to take stock, gradually releasing as we go the weight – the ballast – associated with such a serious transformational process.
David Bowie has just passed over to The Other Side, folks – a sad day for all of Rock n Roll indeed! Bowie was a 17 degree Capricorn Sun and thus strongly affected by the current curtain call of the Pluto/Uranus square; very literally manifesting as his shocking (Uranus) death (Pluto). I would wager, though, with Pluto making its excruciating slow march toward his Sun that he had probably seen that freight train coming on the horizon a looooong time ago, even though it seemed sudden to all of us here on the outside. Pluto transits are like that, though…they are very private and interior. But we can even see the Plutonic themes very strongly in the title of his swan song work, “Lazarus”; the Uranian edge coming in as he sings about being “free”.
May he find true liberation in death…his work will always and forever remain immortal, which I think is about the highest honor any Capricorn could ever hope to achieve. ❤
In part 1 of this series, I spoke of how Pluto in Capricorn represents the concept of something deteriorating over time. When a planet or personal point in our chart is touched by this placement, things don’t just fall apart on us “all of the sudden” – it’s gradual and slow; ostensibly because of the gravitas attached to this transformational process. When a termination occurs under Pluto in Capricorn, it’s not uncommon for it to be a drawn-out, prolonged sort of demise – the blessing in this is we have ample time during this transitional state to put our ducks in a row and prepare for the new reality or “new normal” that awaits us on The Other Side so it’s less of a shock to the system. A planned ending or extraction may indeed come into play; possibly one that runs on a delay while all the proper elements/steps are calculated, organized, and then systematically executed. For the transformation of Pluto in Capricorn isn’t likely to be quick or easy; it is hard, time-consuming work that is often fraught with obstacles, so we may need to take our time. If we are spiritually inclined, this may be an instance where petitioning Ganesha – the tusked pachyderm deity known as the Remover of Obstacles in the Hindu pantheon – may come in handy.
I should also speak to another important facet of Pluto-in-Capricorn endings, as they’re apt to be very matter-of-fact. Capricorn’s energy has the effect of minimizing the potential trauma attached to this ordeal so it’s more of an “Alright, let’s get on with it” kind of thing where we handle the situation an adult manner instead of kicking and screaming about it. Anything that dies on Pluto in Capricorn’s watch should be looked at as legitimately non-functional, and while a post-mortem autopsy as to the cause(s) may prove useful, the expiration may have been more or less anticipated for some time thus dialing down the drama-factor considerably. When we’ve seen it coming and/or know that normal life expectancy has more or less been reached in a situation, it can be considerably less upsetting/tragic. The Hi-Fi use of this energy handles endings maturely; seeing no practical good in making them any harder than they need to be and preferring instead to conserve energy for rebuilding.
On that note, picking up where I left off re: this placement’s capacity for “constructive destruction”, I think of it as a “controlled implosion” similar to the demolition of the old hotels and casinos along the Vegas Strip. Capricorn is the Architect and Master Builder, and if the metaphorical footings are rotten or a structure is obsolete in our lives, building code dictates that it’s going to have to come completely down if a new skeleton is to be erected in the footprints of What Once Stood Before. We cannot simply piecemeal things together – we have to scrap it and rebuild, but the RIGHT way! As I alluded to earlier, it is a systematic overhaul, and these kinds of things are never overnight.
When Pluto in Capricorn touches a planet or point in the nativity, sometimes instead we are able to salvage something that is still useful to us or that can be repurposed…this may simply be the “life lessons” we’ve distilled by experiencing this process of disintegration. But in cases where a full razing isn’t required, it is important to take our time reinforcing the weak areas that have been degrading in order to build them up from the inside out – consider this metaphor in a psychological context as well. I would say that in certain cases, the destruction of Pluto in Capricorn may indeed be preventable, but the problem is preventative maintenance is often let go with this placement so that whatever has fallen into disrepair eventually goes off the rails completely. A failure to hit the brakes before this point-of-no-return can absolutely prove fatal, so when we see fissures appearing in the walls the keynote is to stop and address them because they’re not just cosmetic and more than likely indicate a severe underlying issue.
Whether we start over on more solid underpinnings or are able to arrest the process of deterioration in its tracks with the aid of some heavy restructuring, it’s important that any demo work be done carefully and respectfully. Something *has* to come down when Pluto in Capricorn touches our chart, but by handling the teardown process responsibly and with honor, we set the right energetic precedent for the “rebuilding” part of the equation. In some respects the moment we stop resisting the letting go process the reconstruction can already be considered underway, because it’s all about eliminating stale, locked-up energy; especially that which has somehow become ingrained in the status quo. And holding space for this to unfold in due time is important, because a quality restoration matters.
There are many layers of interpretation regarding Pluto’s passage through Capricorn, but for the purposes of this particular post, right now I want to discuss one key concept of this placement…that is the idea of something deteriorating over time. It’s not as if a situation, a relationship, etc. immediately falls apart if/when touched by Pluto in Capricorn; rather it takes its time unraveling. Think: a controlled collapse, or a brick-by-brick demolition. Pluto in Capricorn’s passage through a specific house of our chart or contact to a planet or personal point in our nativity signifies that something is very likely undergoing a process of being gradually – perhaps even carefully and deliberately – deconstructed.
Because nothing touched by Pluto’s hand can ever stay the same, it is highly unlikely that Humpty Dumpty will ever be put back together again in exactly the same way. However, there is also an equally good chance that whatever it is may yet live on in another, more solid or mature form after that Limit Break has been reached and the non-functional status quo subsequently flushed down the tubes. There is usually a razing involved with Pluto transits, but while this planet traverses Capricorn this will take its time in happening and we will see it coming (read: have ample warning) quite possibly YEARS before whatever it is actually dies – we’ll hear that freight train coming looooong before it actually hits. It’s not as fatalistic as it sounds, I assure you – the process of destruction can actually be quite constructive with Pluto in Capricorn….more on that later.
LOL, if you change up the lyrics a bit, this song is actually totally apropos for Mercury square Pluto, which is exact as I post.
Pluto has been calling me quite a bit lately, actually – I’ve had many Platinum Plutonians emerging from the woodwork and getting in touch in recent months. Most recently, it was a Scorpio girlfriend from 20 years ago texting me from out of the clear blue sky. Now I am a Plutonian as well, and usually when contact between myself and another dies off, I tend to just leave it wherever it lies and am not prone to reconnecting with people once the line has gone silent for whatever reason. But she has always been an exception to this general rule and I have thought of her fondly over the years – we were separated when she moved halfway across the country and lost touch during the tumultuous upheaval that was my youth…somewhere during my many changes of residence, I had lost her contact info. We were mutually jazzed to reconnect with one another and spent some time chatting on the phone and catching up – she is actually living in (of all places!) Sin City – I can’t think of a more hilariously apt locale for Scorpio!
I’ve also re-established contact with a Moon-Pluto woman whom I’ve always seen as sort of a surrogate mother figure. Tragically, she lost her home in a fire earlier this year…she had no idea she was a Moon conjunct Pluto gal, and yet for some reason has been inexplicably (well, unless you know astrology, LOL) drawn to Phoenix symbols to adorn her home, which is in the process of being rebuilt from the ashes as we speak (better than ever)! Truly, the stories she has about this are freakishly cool – I will save them for another time as this makes a very interesting astro-post all on its own.
There have been at least a half dozen instances of Plutonians connecting or re-connecting with me since this Pluto transit of mine kicked in. I do love & appreciate the higher-flying versions of this breed and have said for eons there is always room for another at my table. I don’t voluntarily orbit in the company of the Lo-Fi variants, though, and have theorized it might be because I scare them off…a bright light in a room will tend to send all the cockroaches scuttling for cover, LOL!
I do love and appreciate good Plutonians, though….they are a rarer breed by nature because Pluto energy can so easily corrupt, but there is none better than a Hi-Fi Plutonian ally. It would seem life appears to be sending them my way in droves and when you’re right in the midst of a major Pluto transit, lemme tell ya, there is no one else you would want supporting you! It’s a bit of funny role reversal for me as I have spent decades of my life always being the go-to (Plutonian) person for others during times of crisis and loss; the proverbial Ferryman across the river Styx shepherding lost souls through major transition. Now I am on the receiving end.
Perhaps since I spent so many years as an agent in his service, Pluto felt some small recompense was due and decided to bust out the Bat Signal on my behalf; psychically or subliminally communicating with his minions and giving them the impetus get in touch with me en masse. Regardless if this was the case or not, they have all proved to be invaluable resources for which I am very grateful. On a personal growth level, one other thing I can say is these contacts have all allowed me to strip away a protective shell of guardedness so people can communicate with and meet me at deeper, more authentic level, and I truly do treasure this. So if your BatPhone starts ringing off the hook, definitely don’t be afraid to pick it up and see if it’s Pluto calling….
Ever since this Pluto transit kicked in, I have experienced some pretty wild encounters on the Vulture Medicine front. One of the most memorable was the time I came upon a flock of about 20-25 ominously large Turkey Vultures perched upon the lower boughs of a decaying old sugar maple one evening during a run. They were probably only about 30 feet away from me and didn’t even startle as I passed…it was surreal and made the hair on the back of my neck stand straight up in a combination of awe and also a vague sense of foreboding – I knew that life wasn’t likely to be the same after an encounter like that, as that’s some Big Medicine!
Vultures are an earthly manifestation of Plutonic energy, you see, and may appear to us at times when an old way of life is passing as harbingers of this transition. They are carrion feeders, so there is an element of learning how to spiritually sustain ourselves from the decay that surrounds us. Fortunately (LOL, that’s my gallows humor, folks!) I am well-versed in the practice of finding gold in the shadow…
Let me begin this tale by stating that Pluto thrives on renewal – its energy IS symbolic of The Phoenix after all; that mythical fire bird that was consumed in the flames of its old and dying self only to rise up from its ashes anew. Pluto eliminates what’s stagnant or dead and vaporizes that stale energy in our life in order to make room for something vibrant and vital to take hold in that vacant space. I was therefore tickled when – under a recent Pluto transit to my Venus (Venus being symbolic of money and earned income, of course) – I found myself burning old paycheck stubs from a former and unhappy profession as if they had been letters from an ex-lover. There was no bitterness or resentment; just the recognition this was a part of my life that was (thankfully) over and incinerating the evidence was merely a symbolic gesture to The Universe that I had indeed moved on and cut ties. I was quite surprised to find that I still had them – I found myself cleaning out a file cabinet when I unexpectedly came upon a file of years-old pay stubs that represented a time in my life where I felt disempowered and at the mercy of…well…assholes, LOL. There really is no other way to say it, and besides, Pluto would frown upon any attempts to put a pretty face over it anyway. 😉 I’m sure many reading here can relate when I say there have been more than a few times during the course of my existence where I endured some screwy employment situations because I “needed the paycheck”. Adding to this was the fact that, in this particular industry, sexism – if not outright misogyny – is the norm, so having a strong sense of self-worth made you somewhat of a liability if you were a woman, LOL. In retrospect, from the very beginning this was never quite a recipe for a “happy marriage”…
Needless to say, upon being faced with a tangible reminder of this period in my life, I was unable to shake the feeling that stack of paper probably had some pretty bad juju attached to it. It was immediately after this realization that I was seized by a random impetus to burn the pile of check stubs, though not reactively so as there wasn’t really much emotion attached to the thought at all. It was more along the lines of an immediate recognition that the burning would represent an energy cleansing of sorts – all the negativity attached to that time in my life would literally go *up in smoke*, and it wasn’t until I watched the hungry flames licking the papers’ edges and the printed numbers fading into blackness that it struck me this was indeed a *very* literal manifestation of the Pluto transit to my Venus! I felt not only a palpable sense of closure at this symbolic act, but a sense of confidence in choosing to burn an energetic bridge that had led down a trail of financial enslavement; I would never again allow myself to be in a disadvantaged position like this where someone had financial leverage over me. The warmth of the fire washing over me on such a chilly autumn night was comforting – I took a few deep breaths, inviting the heated air into my nasal passage and down my throat into my lungs to fully envelop me from within as well. I smiled as the blaze cooled and the embers slowly died to ash, pausing to pick up a few pinches of the soot to scatter over my next deposit slip to the bank. If it’s one thing about Pluto transits, it’s that the literal and figurative ash left in its wake makes one hell of a potent fertilizer for the seeds we plant with conscious intention.
For anyone else reading and who is dealing with a Pluto transit to their Venus, I highly recommend a ritual energetic cleanse similar to this if you’re looking to purge negativity and clear any funky or stagnant vibes that may still be lingering in the wake of this period. If we’ve been through any situation where we’ve been “a slave to the money” or through relationship hell of one kind of another (because Venus represents love as well as cash), first we do well to invest lots of time & energy unraveling the layers of how this came to be the case. We must go deep; be willing to look at any underlying dysfunction, address anything that affects our sense of self-worth, and fully investigate the “Hows” and “Whys” of what got us sucked into this undertow in the first place. Then once we feel like we’ve hit the root of it (and I mean ALL of the various, spreading tendrils that tend to come attached to the complex situations symbolized by Pluto), it’s time to distill it down and level with ourselves so we can take our power back. We may then consider a symbolic act of burning; an offering to The Universe that affirms we have indeed come out The Other Side of this energy. Most importantly, before doing so we must wait until we’re no longer raw about the situation anymore. Emotions like resentment or bitterness have no place at such a ritual, as we cannot truly “let go” if we’re still holding on inside. If it’s a bad relationship we’ve come through, maybe we burn photos, gifts, or love letters associated with that partnership. If it’s a period of financial enslavement we’ve gotten out of instead, perhaps we burn old credit cards, past due notices, pay stubs, or anything else we no longer need to hold onto after this major transformation. Clearing out the dead, negative energy in this manner can help to raise our own vibrations, and the void subsequently created by such an act allows us to hold space for the inevitable renewal that’s sure to follow ❤