Pluto will soon be changing signs and moving from Capricorn to Aquarius – March 2023 to Jan 2044. These cycles indicate big generational changes in society. The tide is turning on this last period. Pluto moved into Capricorn in Jan 2008 and due to its elliptical orbit Pluto can take 13 to 33 years to move through a sign. Thank goodness it only stayed 13 years in Capricorn as the damage and destruction has been immense! Capricorn is Saturn ruled and speaks about those in authority – governments and corporations or business. We have seen the abuse of power by leaders in both government and business. The intoxicating drive for power and influence has been significant and sadly we have seen how power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. South Africa has witnessed the massive failure of the ANC government especially in this period. Corruption scandals are deeply entrenched in all aspects of society. What we appreciate as South Africans is that corruption and greed stretches across the globe both in the public and private sectors. We have also witnessed the fact that ordinary people have had enough and the push back has been significant.
The Jupiter/Saturn/Pluto conjunction in 2020 signalled that we as humanity need to fundamentally change directions. What we are doing is no longer sustainable on so many levels. There is a fundamental understanding that the power dynamics in society need to change. Pluto in Aquarius will herald a time of greater power to the people. We have seen our democratic institutions buckling under the pressure of corruption and greed. People no longer have faith in leadership. They have abused their positions of authority and selfishly enriched themselves. There has been no shortage of narcissistic leaders across governments and corporations in this time of Pluto in Capricorn. There is a deep recognition that this is no longer sustainable. We need to restore power to the people and with that we as individuals need to take responsibility.
Aquarius is also Saturn ruled and the group dynamic is significant. It speaks about the importance of taking personal and collection responsibility for our communities/countries and the world. We are all connected. There is no separation. Covid disruptions have demonstrated the levels of interconnectedness across the world with the lockdowns. This is an excellent time to connect with a group of like-minded individuals who share your passion. Groups have more power and influence than individuals. Together we can change the world. The youth will most likely drive this process as they have nothing to loose as they are not invested in the current system.
The Covid vaccination journey has highlighted the inequality we see in the world. The developed world was quick to secure and hoard vaccines. Those in less developed countries struggled to gain access to vaccinations. We have also seen how nobody is safe until everyone is safe. Leaders close borders with no affect. We are all connected and this virus will find us all eventually. We need to think collectively and ask individuals to take personal responsibility too.
The last time Pluto moved into Aquarius between April 1777 to Dec 1798 it signalled a time of massive social change and disruption. The people of France revolted against the monarchy and stormed the Bastille on 14 July 1789 starting the French Revolution. “Equality, liberty and fraternity” was the rallying cry from the people. These were the founding principles of liberal democracy. The Old Regime was the political and social system of the Kingdom of France from the late middle ages until the French Revolution of 1789. The underlying causes of the revolution are generally seen to be the failure of the Old Regime to manage social and economic inequality. Rapid population growth and an inability to finance government debt resulted in economic depression, unemployment and high food prices. Combined with a regressive tax system and the resistance of the elite to reform, it created a crisis that the leadership of King Louis XVI could not manage. Sound familiar?
Catherine the Great ruled Russia in this period with her accession to the throne on 17 July 1762 – 8 days after the coup where she had her husband, Peter III arrested and forced him to sign a document confirming his abdication and leaving no one to dispute her accession to the throne. Peter III was allegedly assassinated but an autopsy confirmed a severe stroke. Catherine made public health a priority with a strong emphasis on public administration. Catherine the Great decided to have herself vaccinated against smallpox by a British doctor, Thomas Dimsdale. It was considered controversial at the time. It was a success as her first child had died at 14 months. Her son was later inoculated and Catherine the Great then sought to have all subjects in her empire inoculated. Catherine the Great ruled from 1762 to 1796 and her reign was regarded as the Golden Age of the Russian Empire.
The origin of smallpox is unknown. Smallpox rashes were found on Egyptian mummies. This suggests that smallpox had existed for about 3000 years. Smallpox was a terrible disease killing 3 out of every 10 people who contracted the disease. One of the first methods of controlling smallpox was variolation. People were exposed to material from the smallpox sores either by scratching it into their arm or inhaling it through their nose. Fewer people died when they were exposed in this way than if they had acquired it naturally. The basis for vaccination began in 1796 when Edward Jenner noticed that milkmaids who had contracted cowpox were protected from smallpox. To test his theory he took material from a cowpox sore and inoculated the arm of a boy. Months later he exposed this boy to smallpox and the boy never contracted smallpox. It was this work that led him to express his desire that smallpox be eradicated as it was the most dreadful disease afflicting humanity. Vaccination became widely accepted. But it was not until 1959 that the World Health Organisation started a plan to rid the world of smallpox. There was a lack of funds and personnel and a shortage of vaccines and in 1966 smallpox was still widespread with regular outbreaks in South America, Asia and Africa. It was during this time that the program was intensified as smallpox had already been eliminated in North America and Europe in early 1950’s. By 1971 smallpox was eradicated from South America, followed by Asia (1975) and Africa (1977). Almost 2 centuries after Jenner discovered the vaccination, the World Health Assembly declared the world free of smallpox on 8 May 1980. Many people consider smallpox eradication to be the biggest achievement in international public health.
The American revolution was an ideological and political revolution that occurred in British America between 1765 and 1791. The Americans in the Thirteen Colonies formed independent states that defeated the British in the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783), gaining independence from the British Crown and establishing the United States of America, the first modern constitutional liberal democracy. American colonialists objected to being taxed by the British Parliament, a body where they had no formal representation. The stamp act of 1765 imposed internal taxes on the colonies. This caused protests and was repealed but replaced by the Townshend Act in 1767 and tensions flared again. The Continental Congress declared British King George III a tyrant who trampled the colonists’ rights as Englishmen, and they declared the colonies free and independent on July 4, 1776. The Patriotic leadership professed to be centred on liberalism and republicanism and rejected being ruled by the monarchy and the aristocracy. The Declaration of Independence created that all men are created equal. It was not until later centuries that constitutional amendments would be granted to include African Americans, Native Americans and poor white men and women.
The US will be having its Pluto Return in 2022 a year before Pluto enters Aquarius in March 2023. This is significant. The seeds of revolution were sown when the stock market crashed in 2008. Pluto entered Capricorn in Jan 2008. The Trump Presidency created much division in the US and the Covid-19 crisis has continued to polarise people in the US and around the world. The disaffected middle class and the younger generation who continue to feel excluded from the economy are making their voices heard not only in the US but around the globe. A Pluto Return is significant – this is a 248 year cycle. Pluto is associated with death and dying, debt and taxation. It requires us to surrender. It is a fundamental transformational cycle – needing to purge the old and make space for the new. This can only happen with death and decay. The US has certainly reached a critical point in its journey and being a super power this will have a profound impact on the world too.
Looking further back in history, Pluto was also in Aquarius between Feb 1532 to Dec 1553. It was during this period when Nicolaus Copernicus, a Polish astronomer, began work which led to a new view of the universe. For nearly 2000 years it was believed that the earth was the centre of the universe according to Ptolemy. Geocentric theory put the sun, stars and planets – everything that was considered part of the universe – travelling around a motionless earth. The Catholic Church certainly supported this view and its religious teachings were based on this understanding. Both ancient and medieval writers and scientists had pointed out problems with this theory and it was Copernicus who tackled these problems. Using observations and mathematics he proposed the heliocentric theory which put the sun at the centre of the universe with all the planets, stars and earth orbiting the sun. He also described how the earth rotates on its own axis every 24 hours and it was this movement that explained why heavenly objects seemed to move around earth. He published these ideas in 1543.
The generation born between Jan 1998 to Feb 2012 were all born with Neptune in Aquarius. Neptune is the idealist and speaks about our dreams and aspirations. It is this generation that are now coming of age. The oldest will be 25 years of age when Pluto enters Aquarius. They will be finishing school and entering the work force with many new ideas about how to change the world.
Pluto in Aquarius
Feb 1532 to Dec 1553
April 1777 to Dec 1798
March 2023 to Jan 2044