Greetings, and welcome back! Today I have another post about collective or generational astrology, and one that has a particular significance for anyone born in the 1970s or early 1980s. If you enjoy this post, please consider supporting further posts on Patreon.
“Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror.
But you are eternity and you are the mirror.”
― Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet
Iterations of Pluto in Libra occur over a cycle of about 248 years, the time it takes Pluto to travel through all 12 signs. He will spend a varying range of time in different signs because his orbit is not resting in the disk of the solar system (the ecliptic) but instead is inclined towards it, bisecting it at an angle of about 17°, and furthermore it is not circular like the other planets orbits are but elliptical. In the case of Libra, he spends about 12-13 years in the sign, which makes the tribe one of the smallest by the way Pluto measures things.
For over a millennia now, whenever it is in zodiacal Libra Pluto will be visually swinging away from the ecliptic and will be moving not through the stars of Libra but over the stars of Virgo. The spring equinox occurred in this constellation 15,000 years ago and many date the constellation as having an even older history, but the earliest still surviving appearance of Virgo in our culture is believed to be the Sphinx, which is seen by some as a fusion of Leo and Virgo, with the head being that of Virgo. However, it is clear that the Sphinx is much older than the currently accepted age attributed to it.
To the ancient Egyptians, Virgo was the starry body of the goddess Isis, wife-sister of Osiris and mother of Horus (who is an instrument of justice and an avenger). Osiris himself was thought to be literally celestially embodied in the constellation Orion. Such attributions were not rigid (other celestial objects came to represent these deities too) but these were enduring. Virgo is shown in the earliest known (bas-relief) zodiac depiction found at the Temple of Denderah and now on display in the Louvre. In later mythologies she becomes not the Maiden but the virgin Mother Mary – at the time of Christ the stars of Cancer (nearby) were known as ‘the Manger’; Taurus and Aries (a ram and a bull) are also relatively nearby (since some constellations are very small). In other words she becomes an integral part of the sky story of Christianity, perhaps following a known conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn (a bright star) over Bethlehem in the stars of Virgo at the time of the nativity. See this analysis by Bernadette Brady.
Tracing the lineage of this constellation, again and again we encounter the same symbolism across all major cultures – this is a young woman with all the magic and power that comes with it, and she bears in her hands gifts, precious things which allow us to cultivate nature and elevate ourselves. As Isis, she grasps the ankh and the secrets of magic. As Mary, she holds the innocent child, but she is also a virgin. As Persephone or other older Earth goddesses manifest as maidens, she is not sexually naive and her arrival brings nourishment and life. In all her guises there is something pure and giving about her and this is part of the essential meaning communicated by these stars.
What does all this Virgo talk have to do with Pluto in Libra, dear reader? Glad you asked 😉 The connection to the Greek figure of Persephone is a resonant one, as Pluto is none other than Hades, the god who abducts Persephone out of overwhelming desire and keeps her in his Underworld for half the year, thus explaining the seasons, for when Persephone returns at the spring equinox (the point of equal balance between night and day) she brings the world back to colour and life, and departs it taking it with her at the autumn equinox.
However if we are going to interpret this astrologically through Greek myth, we need to understand that the Greeks pilfered and debased a lot of very ancient stuff that they took from Egypt, Mesopotamia and elsewhere. Even more problematically they make it all misogynous, filling it with hatred, distrust, dis-empowerment and the sexual objectification of women. We need to ask ourselves what happens when this picture shows not Pluto raping a maiden but a maiden going willingly to dally with the superman of sex, Pluto, a powerful woman whom he sees as his equal. Only then will we begin to see through the smear campaign in Greek mythology and the connection between Pluto in the stars of Virgo and Pluto in zodiacal Libra. In the preceding versions of the tale in the Mesopotamian tradition, the Pluto figure is not male but female, and she is an avatar of Venus whose terrible beauty cannot be denied.
So tip the scales.
Below I have given you a relatively recent section of this pattern and some significant historical events from these periods which resonate with the influence of Pluto in zodiacal Libra and the stars of Virgo.
Pluto in Libra (1000 – 2100)
- 28th Sep. 1232 – 8th Oct. 1244 (Excluding 9th Apr. – 23rd Jul. 1233 and 21st Dec. 1243 – 2nd Mar. 1244)
- 13th Oct. 1478 – 21st Aug. 1491 (Excluding 14th Mar. – 11th Aug. 1479 and 28th Oct. 1490 – 8th May. 1491)
- 14th Nov. 1724 – 1st Oct. 1737 (Excluding 21st Feb. – 10th Sep. 1725 and 6th Dec. 1736 – 3rd Apr. 1737)
- 5th Oct. 1971 – 28th Aug. 1984 (Excluding 17th Apr. – 30th Jul. 1972 and 5th Nov. 1983 – 18th May 1984)
- The next occurrence is in 2217 and will last until 2230
Significant Events from these periods
1232 – 1244: Mongol Empire conquers Russia and many other domains; Mustansiriya School (an early library and centre of cultured learning) is founded in Baghdad; Pluto moves inside Neptune’s orbit; a Chinese text records that Hangzhou City, the capital of the Song Dynasty, held various social clubs that included a West Lake Poetry Club, the Buddhist Tea Society, the Physical Fitness Club, the Anglers’ Club, the Occult Club, the Young Girls’ Chorus, the Exotic Foods Club, the Plants and Fruits Club, the Antique Collectors’ Club, the Horse-Lovers’ Club, and the Refined Music Society – a few years later, over 30,000 of these buildings are consumed in a fire; a drought causes the harvest to fail and leads to one of the great famines of the century in Europe; Ibn Nafis suggests that the right and left ventricles of the heart are separate.
1478 – 1491: Spanish Inquisition begins in practice with the first auto-da-fé; Henry VII defeats Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth and becomes King of England; The Lighthouse of Alexandria’s final remains disappear when the Sultan of Egypt, builds the Citadel of Qaitbay on its site; Pluto moves inside Neptune’s orbit; the mystery concerning the fates of the two Princes in the Tower (King Edward V of England and his younger brother Richard); William Caxton, the first printer of books in English, prints his translation of Aesop’s Fables; Leonardo da Vinci produces a number of designs for flying machines, including the ‘ariel screw’ or helicopter; King Henry VII of England and Elizabeth of York are married, uniting the House of Lancaster and the House of York after the Wars of the Roses.
1724 – 1737: Treaty of Constantinople is signed, partitioning Persia between the Ottoman Empire and Russia; Chinese court painters recreate Zhang Zeduan’s classic panoramic painting, ‘Along the River During Qingming Festival’; Turlough O’Carolan, famous Irish harper, died; the Copenhagen Fire of 1728 – the cultural losses were huge; James Bradley uses stellar aberration (first observed in 1725) to calculate the speed of light and observes the swaying of the Earth’s axis; division of Carolina into a North and South; the original Theatre Royal, Covent Garden, London (the modern-day Royal Opera House) is opened; the first Freemasons lodge opens in what will become the United States of America; George Hadley publishes the first explanation of the trade winds; Pluto moves inside Neptune’s orbit again; in Britain the Theatrical Licensing Act requires plays to be submitted to the Lord Chamberlain for censorship.
1971 – 1984: Pluto moves inside Neptune’s orbit once again, the Supreme Court of the United States decides on critical issues allowing women to have abortions; death of Pablo Picasso; murder of John Lennon; death of Elvis Presley; the Super Outbreak occurred in the U.S. producing 148 tornadoes and killing a total of 330 people; cyclone Tracy devastated the Australian city of Darwin; the Banqiao Dam, in China’s Henan Province, failed after a freak typhoon and over 200,000 people perished; Super Typhoon Tip affected areas in the southwestern Pacific Ocean and became the largest and most powerful tropical cyclone ever recorded, with a gale diameter of almost 1,400 miles, 190-mph winds, and a record intensity of 870 millibars; two Boeing 747s collided on the runway in heavy fog at Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain, killing 583 people – the worst aviation disaster on record; the rapid pace of societal transformation and the aspiration for a more egalitarian society; implementation of feminism with increasingly flexible and varied gender roles for women in industrialized societies; acceleration of the divorce rate; civil liberty movements; increasing polarisation of the world between the USA and USSR – the ‘Cold War’; prevalence of anti-war demonstrations and CND; criminal non-fiction becomes a popular topic of books.
We should note that Pluto enters the orbit of Neptune (i.e. is closer to Earth than Neptune is) during this part of his journey. The diagram below is from NASA and displays this (note that they will never collide since Pluto’s orbit is far above that of Neptune):
This is a hugely telling fact concerning the nature of Pluto and I have been saying since 1996 that it is a major part of what gives Pluto such significance in modern astrology. It is what differentiates him from other Trans-Neptunian objects. When Pluto inserts itself into the orbit of Neptune the collective awareness we have of the vast and mysterious universe beyond the doorstep of our solar system finds that a little bit of it has crept inside, and we begin to interact with Pluto more directly. All of this happens when he enters Libra, and so the generations born with this placement often find themselves grappling with deep psychological issues as they try to integrate something from far beyond the ken of normal experience. Pluto last entered the orbit of Neptune in 1977 and left around 1999, so he spends about 20 years in this part of his orbit and spans two signs – Libra and Scorpio, the two signs he is fastest moving through – along with a small part of Sagittarius (which he entered in 1995) during this period.
The mysteries of Pluto in Libra which squeeze through the keyhole of Neptune, so to speak, are connected with the perception of karmic balance and truth, with visions of the equality and equilibrium of life throughout the universes, with the interdependence and symmetry of life and seeing justice done to these principles in the human world. When humanity looks into the mirror of Pluto in Libra it sees itself reflected in its need for company, in its relationship with other things, and its inner turmoil arouses demons when it perceives inequality and corruption in the process of applying just principles of equanimity in the world. This tribe insists on fairness and an even playing field, to the extent that it will wreck and ruin things which are perceived as unfair. Much depends, then, on the perception of fairness they have, on whether it is just a twisted reflection of self interest or is a truly diplomatic and peace-loving one. There will be many in this tribe who yearn to punish wrongdoings that they perceive, but they will rarely go to war to do it. Instead, they tend to impose outrageous pressures and justify their own dark deeds by blaming it all on the unfairness visited upon them. The original notion of deeply complex interconnected relationship is then lost in darkness and blame.
In this pattern we see major social regeneration and destruction – cultures are decimated by hordes of barbarian killers, cultural centres are founded or burned, harvests fail and cause famine (starry Virgo is goddess of grain), states are divided, houses are united in marriage, costly wars are avoided when surrenders are negotiated (by an odd twist of language, ‘suing for peace’ seems a perfect phrase for Pluto in Libra), treaties are signed bringing peace to warring nations, stories emerge in which pairs of things are besieged, betrayed, destroyed or murdered, corruption in law and the justice system becomes an issue, equality and equal rights for the gender, racial and sexual divisions in society are prominent, hugely destructive winds assail humanity, discoveries or transformations occur through our understanding of things that have axis, balance and suspension, major happenings involving our love affair with flight occur, major artists and peace makers die or emerge as potent forces, polarities tear at society and major legal developments or things that shape the justice system take place. These, then, are examples of the mass karma being dealt with by the tribe of Pluto in Libra.
Pluto was last in Libra from 1971- 1984. This current generation seems most concerned with the cause of justice and transforming human relations and with exposing rottenness and corruption in law and matters of equality. It is imperative that they initiate a transformation of human relationships and purify them of all prejudice and imbalance, especially that which is concerned with choices of sexuality and equality of the genders, and particularly as regards to legal rights. They possess the ability to see the necessity for change in personal and global relations, but they seek to negotiate that change rather than force it by an act of will. Ultimately they have the potential to collectively perceive the universal justice and equilibrium of the Akasha in all things.
On the physical level, this generation will pursue the truth, almost fanatically, and they will also seek to regenerate the systems of justice and the attitudes toward relationships, wherein no prejudice will be left unaccounted for. They will transform and resurrect muses which drive the pursuit of art and high culture, shocking many with their work. Through them, new concepts of marriage and partnership will erode the old traditional views, not just within Christian terms, but throughout the world; old ways of relating together will be buried, and new, more middle of the road, liberal attitudes will prevail. Homosexuality, single parents, and other so called ‘odd’ ways of living will eventually become translated into the law of the land and then it will go deeper, into an area where it will become a social taboo to hold opinions against total equality, so that there is an equality which truly represents the way people live. However, Libra being what it is and Pluto always having a shadow side, the Pluto in Libra generation also births opponents to these views, leading to a divisive tribe that struggles to balance its perception of itself. Pluto can also turn extremely dark, and in these cases produces predators who manipulate their relationships in cunning and callous fashion. These issues also rise up through the tribe and cause it to debate what to do.
This is really where the strength of this tribe lies – in debating complex, messy dilemmas, seeking to unravel the truth so that a fair judgment can be made. This is one of the greatest assets they can bring to the collective awareness when they truly look upon their own reflection in the mirror of eternity. For then they see that what is within all human relationships is a part of them, and it literally compels them to look deeper to figure out where the regeneration can and needs to occur. When the tribe is divided over issues, it cannot perform this function and must instead debate among itself about what it thinks, mostly seeking to answer for itself the question of what is moral and just. Some issues become moral sticking points and these are telling of deeper divisions within the collective awareness. Abortion is one of those issues, for example.
It may be that Pluto in Libra signifies a complex transforming of pressure in the atmosphere to bring about stronger and more devastating winds, tornadoes, typhoons and other potential disasters. If so, there will be no direct physical causal link between Pluto and the atmosphere of our planet, the changes will be occurring in ways currently beyond our ability to detect, by which I mean it is probably part of the complex equilibrium of our planetary system (which includes its astral form). In addition, in the modern era the problem of air quality is rising to dominate the Pluto in Libra agenda, a problem that was accelerated with the massive rise in emissions that took place while they were busy being born.
The psychic compulsion of Pluto in Libra is for the power of absolute fairness, total impartiality and obsessive balance in relationships leading to a deep psychic transmutation and a penetrating equalisation between things. It is a compulsion to immerse oneself in a significant other, to obsess about them, a deep heartfelt need for all our relations to be deep and meaningful, transformational and empowering experiences, but for one relationship in particular to consume all the others. At a deep level we want to lose ourselves in another human being and have them lose themselves in us. The tribe can fall into a collective agony of overwhelming loneliness. In order to avoid the dark aspects of Pluto already mentioned it must overcome the need for powerful relations and for power in relations, as well as its fear of the unknown and death in relationships. There must be rejection of condemnation , a shunning of aloof judgements that ignore personal circumstances, and less emphasis on everything needing to be fair, which is another way of saying the way we want it to be. Once these individuals have transformed their collective attitudes in this way, the power of Pluto changes them and empowers the world.
On a metaphysical level, this Pluto generation has the key to potentially solving the problems of karma once and for all. Justice is infinite in an infinitely balanced universe, and the universe is perpetually equilibrating that way because it is One Self. Every action has inescapable consequences and everything is ultimately accounted for. It does not need to be implemented by humanity to exist, although we need to play a role in its implementation. Judgement and human justice often obscure the path to our deeper connections, for to cast judgement one must exclude the accused and cast blame – on ourselves. If we do not forgive then we must judge, and ultimately we only judge the One Self. Pluto in Libra asks us to forgive our partners for any pain they cause us and not to blame ourselves for those we may have caused them, even from dying (as can have happened in previous incarnations). He wants us to look deeper. In this he reveals that what we think of others we actually think of ourselves, and therefore all attack is a symptom of insanity, an obsession with our own darkness, fear or self loathing.
It is therefore the dark mass karma of human relationships, the purge of rotten and oppressive conditions in human social interaction which this Pluto is targeting. He seeks to uproot the hidden karmic consequences of inequality, injustice, unfairness, prejudice and discrimination in each person he encounters, one on one. Deeper still, its expression through Active Air works to regenerate and purge all disharmonies in our ideas and to transform all things through equalising them, balancing them, and seeing that all is fair. This is a long process given where we are today, but this tribe is profoundly advancing it. They just run the risk of being utterly consumed by it.
As part of this mass transformation the people of this tribe must tackle their own personal compulsion to be together with someone powerful or in a powerful and intense way, because at some deep level this is a denial and concealment of their power by placing it in the form of a companion and partner who will leave them, or whom they will leave, and that will never be anything but deeply painful. Pluto in Libra knows deep in its soul that the light of love always comes with an equally dark price, and that the two are like night and day. They often have a deep conviction that without a partner life is unfair and that the end of love in death is even more unfair. They don’t want to let go, perhaps because they are haunted by a traumatic romantic tragedy. They are afraid to let go when the time comes, because they are afraid that we are all alone in the universe, but we are not, nothing is, no connection is ever lost, love exists forever and Pluto is prepared to drag this tribe through hell to get them to see it again.
For Pluto has an uncompromising agenda and will not let the matter pass. The tribe must address our own dependence, worshipful adoration, and fanatical devotion and compulsion to be with someone, factors which lie deep within the damaged human psyche – or Pluto will very likely take relationships away from this tribe leaving them bereft. Understand this advice properly – it is not to say that if they do not do this, someone they love will die. People will die anyway – the point is, they wont be able to deal easily with it unless they can deal with it while those people are around and alive. With Pluto in Libra, there is enormous unconscious will invested in maintaining and defending the relationships we form, relationships which can become entanglements and manipulative obsessions if we are unable to control our hidden urges to both control the situation and be consumed by it. Our descent into the Underworld is like that of the fabled and tragic Orpheus seeking his lost love and being warned never to look back, but we must remember that what we find down there is only what we have hidden from ourselves. We cannot shun relationships entirely. We need one another on a deep level, and this tribe sings that song.
As I have said in a previous message, Pluto tribes can greatly benefit from allying themselves with other Pluto tribes that they share an Element with. Failing this, which is common, they can work well with tribes that they have a sextile relationship to. The youngest members of the last Pluto in Gemini tribe were born in 1914, and so they are almost all gone and they will not return until 2132. The Pluto in Libra tribe has to wait until 2023 before the first Pluto in Aquarius souls are born, during which time the youngest of them will be almost 40 and the oldest of them in their early 50s, so by the time the Pluto in Aquarius generation come of age, the Pluto in Libra generation are approaching their 60s and 70s. This is pretty good going, in fact, as many Pluto tribes never get to see another tribe belonging to the same Element being born, and must (if they wish to work together, which is a good idea) instead turn to the sextile relationship of signs rather than the trine. If even this possibility leads to an extreme age difference, Jupiter in signs can substitute for Pluto in signs, but to avoid Pluto overload only the trine relationship should be used.
This sextile relationship can be overstimulating, especially in a collective or group without a grasp of the strategies of Pluto. Libra is in a sextile with both Leo and Sagittarius, Fire signs that provide it with needed confidence, motivation and directness, because Libra is generally non-confrontational. The Pluto in Leo tribe (1939-1958, now aged between 58 and 77) provide more confidence and in turn receive help with their own desire for prominence, while the younger Pluto in Sagittarius tribe (1995-2008, now aged between 8 and 21) provide inspiration and even romance (in the broadest sense) while receiving greater tranquillity and an awareness of how their actions have consequences for others.
In terms of its magical potential, Pluto in Libra allows us to more easily perceive the depth point of other people and of relationships. We understand the deeper motivations behind why people want and need to be together, even the ones they themselves do not see, and we are also able to see how the dynamic can be transformed to express greater balance. Our conviction can make the magical equilibrium very strong once it is found, as it will be sourced in a deeper point of balance. Pluto’s affinity for working with the magic of the depth point can also assist this tribe in transferring awareness into the Akasha, and the mental awareness can be trained to help them reach this state more easily. An exercise I would recommend them to try in this respect is focusing on a pair of scales which hold the balance of the universe between light and dark sides, and meditating on the notion of where the perfect balance between them is centred while they consider that balance in every way, moving inevitably to the notion of infinity where there is no need for balance because there is no concrete quantity to measure – everything is ‘in balance’ because there is no split to be balanced at this level. It will quickly be seen that in infinity the point of balance is personally centred and is forever being rediscovered and if the tribe dives into this infinite point of balance they will quickly find the depth point, the Akasha.
Connecting with this level of awareness will probably reveal to them a great deal about the nature of karma, more than they expect, especially in relation to the major relationships in their lives. This awareness creates its own need for a new balance to be found, and so the process continues and is everlasting, consuming its own tail. This is the dynamic of Pluto in Libra. In connecting with this state of pure being, we undergo a transformative realisation of our own eternal nature, our immortality, and the presence of the One in all things. When we bring enough of this transformation to the collective it affects the entire collective at once in a transformative purge, connecting it and its individual with ‘all the power that ever is or was’. This is the solution to the challenge of Pluto at the collective level, where struggles for absolute temporal power are but reflections of this infinite inner power within us all, buried in a starry Underworld but forever awaiting our re-acceptance of its treasures.
Pluto is in Libra in the astrology for Raphael, Martin Luther, Catherine the Great, Catherine of Aragon, Hernan Cortez, Thomas Cromwell, George Washington, Martha Washington, Joseph Haydn (the ‘Father of Symphony’), John Taverner, Ichabod Crane, James Cook, Josiah Wedgwood, Thomas Gainsborough, Michael Chang, Roger Federer, Robbie Williams, Leonardo DiCaprio, Drew Barrymore, David Beckham, Venus Williams, David Blaine, Matt Smith, Pink, Elijah Wood, Jake Gyllenhaal, Peter Kay and Chris Pratt.