Ask Real Astrologers: Reckoning with Pluto

This week’s question comes from Mary in Omaha, Nebraska:

For the past two to three years, I have been under a major overhaul of my life. I have lost my 37-year marriage, my job, my home, my credit. Moved, alone, over 600 miles away, to find better employment and I am still struggling today. During this time my girlfriend who I was temporarily living with for two years contracted breast cancer and died, leaving behind her 8-year-old daughter. I took care of my friend and her daughter during this time. She was a single mom, Sagittarius. I am so beat up I am afraid of the next round of Saturn return opposition Uranus. Any advice on how to handle this? Thank you.

Libra ponders . . .
Neith’s response:

This format really isn’t set up to respond to all your issues, Mary, so we will address Pluto conjunct your Sun, and if you wish, you can contact either Pat or me about doing a paid report on your second Saturn return amplified by the Saturn-Uranus opposition.

Pluto first conjoined your Sun exactly in early January 2007 and has moved back and forth over your Sun since then. Now he has made his last pass before moving into Capricorn in late November. One of the most difficult aspects of a Pluto transit is the sheer inexorability of them, because Pluto is a transpersonal planet and as such can be considered a force of nature like a volcano or hurricane. Most of us have lots of “hooks” he can latch onto and yank us about with, and we often are completely unaware of those until Pluto comes along to activate them.

In the Western world, we are typically insulated from direct experience with the cycles of death, birth, and regeneration falling under Pluto’s realm of influence, plus we are often brought up with the idea we can achieve anything if we work hard enough. Then Pluto comes along and shows us how vulnerable we truly are.

How best to handle Pluto transits? Surrendering all personal expectations of the desired outcome is one place to start. Another is to stay firmly focused in the present and deal with each day as it comes. For Sagittarius folk who like to be in motion, I recommend taking up some form of moving meditation like tai chi or walking while focusing on the breath. These help calm the mind and stop the negative tape loops that produce fear and doubt.

Mary, you are learning what many others have learned and will be learning and that is there is truth in the statement, “that which doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger.” Your natal Mars-Saturn conjunction in Virgo knows about moving forward one step at a time. There is life after Pluto transits, and it is often better than the old one. Good luck!

Aquarius expounds . . .

Pat’s response:

As usual, I have very little to add to one of Neith’s responses to a Pluto question! I do have a couple of general observations, though.

First, difficult Pluto transits (and some with Uranus as well) require us to change, and if we try to hang onto beliefs, situations, and people who aren’t serving our higher good, the universe often finds ways to rip them out of our hands in a way that feels cruel and undeserved. I will be the first to tell you that I am not good at letting go (lots of fixed energy in my chart), so this is not a judgment, just an observation.

Second, after death, there is regeneration. Unfortunately, we can’t see it while we are going through the rough period. I experienced a Pluto transit in 2001 that literally nearly killed me. At the time, I was well into my study of astrology and had just dipped my toe into doing it professionally, but I couldn’t let go of my journalism career and was struggling to find a way to make that work. Ultimately, it was ripped away, in a way that made it impossible for me to work in that field ever again. So what happened? I became a professional astrologer, which is what I needed to be doing, and I am much happier as a result.

I hope that helps, Mary. Truly, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Thanks again for writing, and much love and courage to you.

I also want to reinforce Neith’s comment that this column is not intended to be a substitute for a reading. If you have a complicated issue or are going through a complete life change, the benefits of a reading with a professional astrologer will far outweigh the modest cost. I currently am not accepting new clients, but stay tuned for news in a few weeks.

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