Pluto: the furthest and tiniest planet of all. In fact, this body is so small and far away that it lost its official status as a planet. However, that doesn't change the astrological fact that Pluto packs a significant punch. Named after the mythological lord of the underworld, it was discovered in 1930, a period of economic depression and rising fascism. These reflect both the depths and concentrated power with which this planet is associated.
Balance the darkness of Pluto with a Self-Healing Analysis Tarot reading»
The reason Pluto is so powerful is that it represents a code that can unlock and transform energy, including emotions. It is the E=MC2 of astrology, a formula for releasing powerful forces. The connection between Pluto and nuclear energy is clear including, of course, its use of plutonium. Additionally, this distant planet was discovered at 18 degrees of the sign Cancer on February 18, 1930. Saturn, the planet of reality, reached this point within days of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima, Japan. Uranus (as in uranium) was conjunct Pluto's discovery point at the time of the first hydrogen bomb test. The little guy is powerful!
On a personal level Pluto is the principle of the shadow, psychologist Carl Jung's term for parts of the psyche that we unconsciously hide from ourselves. This corresponds with the mythology of Pluto who was the kidnapper of Persephone. She was taken to his underground lair until a deal was made with her mother Demeter for her release that required her to return to the underworld for four months every year. This is a story of the returning darkness of winter. Pluto is about the descent into our own underworld or shadow. Yet it is also a story of rebirth, like the returning light of spring.
Face your fears
When we refuse to look into our dark side we are incomplete and lack access to our full power. When we face our fears, doubts, misdeeds and shortcomings without blame or recrimination, we are released from their bondage and grow more profound and potent. Everyone has a shadow, no matter how good they are. It is in the willingness to encounter these often shameful parts of ourselves and to embrace them with love and understanding that we crack our emotional code and avail ourselves of more energy.
The workings of Pluto have been described as "addition by subtraction," which begins with the purging (death) aspect of this planet that makes way for rebirth and regeneration. Simply eliminating habits, beliefs, behaviors, expectations, obligations and ambitions that are not critical to one's survival creates space for new ideas, actions and aspirations to emerge. Prioritizing is Pluto's way of working, requiring us to evaluate and choose how we spend our physical, mental and emotional resources. It does sometimes take a dive into the personal underworld to recognize our deepest needs and desires, yet once those become clear it's easier to figure how to address them. A little purging and taking the plunge are keys to tapping into Pluto's transformational and revitalizing powers.