Pluto, the slowest mover of all, is currently perched between 10 and 12 degrees of Sagittarius. (We'll deal with what this means for you as a person later but for now we're talking collective, global.) Jupiter, a speedier customer but a planet that packs an equally powerful punch, is at the opposite point in Gemini. The effect is rather like putting two Sumo wrestlers in a ring surrounded by strategically placed phials of nitro-glycerine. Pretty explosive.
To flesh out the picture even more, Pluto correlates to anything of an underground nature, which means quite literally underground political movements and less obviously the rich mineral deposits to be found within the earth itself, like oil. (And there are many, many other correspondences upon which we can draw in time to come. But for now, let's deal with oil and politics.)
What Pluto may ultimately do while he transits Sagittarius (until January 2008, just for the record) in the way of transformational events remains to be seen but these two astrological themes represent profound change on the one hand (Pluto) and in the areas of long-distance travel and communications on the other (Sagittarius). (How do you fancy a fortnight in the Sea of Tranquillity at the Lunar Inn? And yes, we might indeed be speaking to alien intelligences by way of a Moog synthesizer.) The Internet is perhaps the most obvious manifestation of Pluto in Sagittarius so far. And even if you're a mite sceptical about a planet millions of miles away from Earth having any effect on the life of its inhabitants, you've got to admit the World-Wide-Web has transformed business, communications and education. And that's absolutely what you'd expect from a Pluto/Sagittarius combo.
Jupiter's presence in Gemini contains an echo of the above - the expansion (good Jupiter word) of communications and travel (Gemini). So the current alignment has much to offer us in the way of the advancement of our civilization. However, any astrological principle, be it a sign, a planet or an aspect, has a positive and negative effect. Let's take nuclear power for example (quite appropriate as it happens since that's another of Pluto's correspondences), this force can be put to the good - it can energize or it can annihilate. So that while we can experience terrific growth, psychologically, spiritually, intellectually - every which way - thanks to the combined force of Jupiter and Pluto, we can also spiral out of control and hasten the advent of the Great Conflagration!
But I digress.
You may have been getting my drift when I mentioned oil and politics earlier. Unless you were off the planet in September, you will remember there was a teeny-weeny crisis over oil. If you lived in England, the Dunkirk spirit was roused once again when the Brits found themselves without petrol and in some cases without bread. And all because the oil potentates in the Middle East decided to cut back their output, thus rocketing the price of oil globally. Across Europe lorry drivers blocked the roads in protest over the soaring cost of petrol. The crisis simmered down, with concessions made by some European governments and threats by others. But, of course, the oil issue has not gone away.
At the same time, the Yugoslavian people voted with their feet (and petrol bombs) successfully ousting Slobodan Milosevic from power and ushering in a new era of democracy. All very reflective of the Jupiter/Pluto opposition, which was at its closest on the 4th of September.
Now, this particular astrological aspect is not a nine day's wonder - it occurred for the second time on October 13th and will do so again on May 6th 2001. But rather than focus on precisely what happened and what is yet to happen on these dates , we should be a little more fluid with our expectations. We need to consider that between July of 2000 and June of 2001 a powerful theme is being played and it will resonate on many different levels. Certainly the flaring up of the conflict between Israel and Palestine (October 12th) was a one such resonance and the severe fall and rise of stock markets across the globe during that same period was another.
And although November did not contain an exact meeting of these two mighty planets the effect was surely there in the choice of the USA's President, Republican, George Bush - a party and an individual poles apart from his predecessor, Bill Clinton. A U-turn that I suspect will be repeated in other countries that have elections during this span of the Jupiter-Pluto opposition.
Now, before you lose all hope of discovering what this all means to you as an individual here comes the personal 'bit'.
It is entirely possible that without your knowledge you have a planet in the same degree area as the aforementioned opposition, thus you are going through a period of sharp extremes, apparently for no good astrological reason. But if you have a birthday between the 29th May and 1st June, the 31st August and the 3rd September, the 1st and 4th December or the 27th February and the 2nd March, you are directly in the sights of Jupiter and Pluto. Translated this means that some area of life will either produce a bumper bundle or spiral out of control. Think boom/bust, win all-lose all and you won't go far wrong. It may be tempting to go all out to achieve your ends under this influence - and I'm all for huge efforts and great courage - but putting yourself at risk of losing all in the process is not advised. You must have a fall back position.
Then again, I cannot really talk about Pluto and Jupiter without mentioning the thorny issue of Fate. As Twentieth Century smarty-pants, we like to believe that we have control over our destiny. After all we have the power to clone ourselves, delay ageing and we have walked upon the moon and discovered that it is definitely not made of green cheese. Fate, luck, chance and the rest belong to an epoch where superstition ruled, where you were lucky if you survived childhood. But if you have ever had something happen to you, something over which you had no control; it was neither your choice nor in your philosophy, then you will have wondered whether indeed destiny has struck. And there is something decidedly destined about the Pluto effect. Usually, over a period of two years you will find that you have been moved to an entirely different space.
Let me give you an example: when Diana met and married Prince Charles in 1981 Pluto was hovering around her Ascendant (rising sign). Her life was utterly transformed between August of 1980 and July of 1981. She went from being a 'commoner' to a princess and within a month of marriage, she became pregnant, setting the stage for another role transformation, from blushing bride to mother of the future King of England (June of 1982). And while at the time her transformation seemed like a fairy-tale, in reality it was a bit Grimm. Likewise, some fifteen years later when Pluto once again made an appearance in her chart ('squaring' her natal Mars-Pluto conjunction) she underwent another transformation - from married to divorced. A new life was begun in 1996 and eighteen months later it was extinguished in the Alma Tunnel in Paris.
Now, I am not suggesting for a minute that if you have Pluto and Jupiter on your case right now that you will marry a Prince, become pregnant or lose your status - or worse - but I am implying that you will be at a cross-roads of some description in which Fate, or circumstance, plays a part. And the best way to handle such an experience is to recognize that you have been dealt a certain hand, but how you play it is your choice. And by becoming 'bigger' than the situation, you will play it well.
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