Planetary Cycles - 7
The Cycle of Pluto
Pluto reached Aries 0° in February 1822 (heliocentric position.) It had barely crossed the Aries threshold in geocentric longitude for a few weeks around the summer solstice 1821, at which time it was in exact square to a conjunction of Uranus and Neptune at the entrance of Capricorn. This was also the year when Mars, Jupiter and Saturn were conjunct in late Aries. Napoleon died in St. Helena on May 5th, 1821. An epoch was closing. Reactionary movements dominated Europe; yet South American states were formed through the liberating action of the great Bolivar and (in Mexico) of Iturbe. 1821 witnessed also the start of the war of Grecian Independence in which Lord Byron died. The new bourgeoisie was rising to power. The Victorian Age was imminent.
We have not yet come to the mid-point of this Pluto cycle. Pluto will reach Libra in September-October 1971; very soon indeed. It could be a very important turning point, especially for the United States, as Pluto will be stationary at what I stated already to be the Mid-Heaven of the U. S. "birth-chart." There will be a Presidential Election in 1972, just after Pluto crosses for the third time this Mid-Heaven. Neptune transited this point at the time of the first atomic nuclear reaction; Uranus, at the 1968 Elections (not yet witnessed as this is written); then Pluto at the 1972 Elections. This must be highly significant. A new "America" may have emerged by the mid-seventies; and in 1980 — also an Election year — Jupiter and Saturn meet also very close to this same zodiacal place perhaps stabilizing the change in government, in fact if not in theory.
In December 1983 heliocentric Pluto will reach Scorpio and remain in that sign until September 1995. While passing through Scorpio the planet moves as fast as it ever does, indeed faster than Neptune. It reaches its perihelion (nearest point to the sun) in 1988, at Scorpio 12°43'. Just before entering that zodiacal sign Pluto cuts across the orbit of Neptune and finds itself closer to the Sun than Neptune. This is a most interesting phenomenon due to the great elongation of Pluto's orbit — which in this resembles, on a much larger scale, that of Mercury. One could speak of it as a fecundation of Neptunian ideals by the relentless activity of Plutonian factors. The period was said to last nine years, according to the astronomer Hugh Rice (New York Planetarium); but more recent astronomical calculations estimate it to extend over twenty-two years — between November 1978 and May 2000.
Pluto can be said, in one sense at least, to symbolize the seed falling into the humus made of the dissolved and chemicalized remains of the ending cycle of annual vegetation (the product of a Neptunian process of dissolution); it can be related also to the "Descent to Hell" by Christ before his resurrection. As Pluto therefore cuts into Neptune's orbit, a process of release from the past and of impregnation by a nucleated vision of the future can symbolically be said to occur. Indeed such a period in every revolution of Pluto around the sun is historically speaking unusually significant.
The last one occurred just before 1750 — a time when ideas and men were born that were to dominate the revolutionary upheavals which followed some 30 years later. A Pluto cycle before brings us to the time of the Great Voyages, the "discovery" of America by Christopher Columbus, and the beginning of the Renaissance. Still earlier crossings of Pluto through Neptune's orbit bring us to the 1240 period (the struggle between Popes and Emperors, Mogol invasions, the destruction of the Albigenses and the entire culture of Southern France which had a great impact upon chivalry and the idealization of woman and love) — to the great crisis of the year Thousand when, after the expected "end of the world" did not come, a new impetus was given to Europe leading to the great Gothic culture and the universalistic Medieval Order — to the beginning of the Carolingian Kings in France after the great victory of Charles Martel over the Arabs which saved Christendom from Islam — and eventually to the beginnings of the Christian era.
We are therefore coming to a period of great importance in the Eighties of this century — less than twenty years ahead of us — a period made even more significant by the heavy concentration of six planets in Capricorn in 1989 and 1990 — particularly Uranus, Neptune and Saturn. Pluto in Scorpio will then find itself in constructive sextile to this group, and thus able to exert a tremendous power of reorganization and integration — which could mean the beginning of a world society, probably under a great personage.
Pluto was near its north node (Cancer 1910) when it was discovered. This coincided with the Great Depression of 1929-30, which led to the F.D. Roosevelt Administration and the New Deal which changed the whole spirit of America. If we take this crossing of the north node as the beginning of the Pluto cycle — in terms of the unfoldment of Pluto is most typical characteristics — we can easily see how significant this 1929-30 date is. It marks also the rise of Mussolini and Hitler, the spread of the Communist ideology under Stalin, and the rapid development of our new technology. When Pluto reached its north node during the 1680's Louis XIV, and the Versailles Court with its pompous rituals, reigned. The Revocation of the Edict of Nantes (1685) marked an exodus of Protestants from France which parallels similar movements of population in Nazi Germany, Russia, etc. A previous crossing of the north node by Pluto leads us to the time of Joan of Arc, the beginning of the national sense in Western Europe, and soon after to the fall of Constantinople by the Turks which brought also an exodus of scholars to Italy and led to the Renaissance.
Let me stress once more that what is essential is not the correlation of the start or culmination of a planetary cycle and some historical event, but the fact that these cycles enable us to understand more deeply the nature of historical processes and to ascertain more objectively our present place in the evolution of mankind. This applies as well to the study of the smaller and faster planets when related to the birth-chart and the life-span of individual persons (i. e. transits). But when we deal with the cyclic movements of the planets beyond Saturn we are no longer taking in consideration the development of individuals in themselves, but rather of individuals as participants in the larger rhythms of human society and of the evolution of the earth and the biosphere.
Today, as mankind is at long last compelled by its own inventions and its abstract intellectual development to think in terms of its global destiny and its all-human unity, this sense of participation in our entire planet's evolution — and indeed of responsibility for what we now can do, for better or for worse, to this evolution — must be developed by all significant human beings. The study of the cycles of the planets of our solar system can be a vital help to the growth of this impersonal historical and global realization in individuals ready and willing to assume the new role now open to mankind.
By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1969 by Dane Rudhyar
and Copyright © 2001 by Leyla Rudhyar Hill
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