The Electrical Dance of Uranus and Pluto
The Revolutionary Cycle...
The electrical dance of revolutionary Uranus and transformative Pluto outlines revolutionary phases in the development of human consciousness on a global scale. We are soon to enter the next stage of this cosmic quadrille. Richard Giles examines the trends...
Historical cycles' beginnings and endings are very hard to spot from our narrow day-to-day perspective. From an astrologer's viewpoint, these cycles' directions are not always clear until afterwards. One such influential cycle is that of two of the outer planets, Uranus and Pluto.
A few months ago I watched the movie Bobby, the story of Robert Kennedy Jnr, the second of the Kennedy brothers to be shot dead in the USA by an assassin. He was killed in June 1968. While watching the movie (I recommend it to capture the spirit of the Sixties and the idealism of the times), I had a few astrological thoughts (not unusual for me) about key planetary connections of those times and the energies of the period.
Uranus and Pluto, two of the most graphic of our outer planets in their cycle of conjunction, square and opposition, play a major part in establishing the impact of the new trends downloaded into our historical and social collective; and when they do, they cause massive alterations in our social and political fabric. However, the full implementations of these shifts do not arise instantly. They can take decades to filter through and establish themselves.
Uranus has a constant cycle of 84-85 years, spending 7 years in each zodiac sign. Pluto orbits more eccentrically in 248 years, doing anything from 12 to 35 years in a sign. It's fastest when Pluto is in Scorpio and slowest when it's in the opposite sign Taurus.
Looking at the pattern of these conjunctions from mediæval times they go the following way:-
- 1090 CE in Aries
- 1201 CE in Cancer
- 1343-1344 CE in Aries
- 1455-1456 CE in Leo
- 1597-1598 CE in Aries
- 1710 CE in Leo/Virgo
- 1850-1851 CE in Aries
- 1965-1966 CE in Virgo
- 2104-05 CE in Taurus
A conjunction of Uranus and Pluto presents a union of the revolutionary arising and the plutonian (intensified) depths. Uranian creativeness aligns with the Plutonian breakdown – and together they become a relentless force for change or disruption. This influence is seen worldwide; the period in which the close conjunction occurs needs to be carefully looked at to see the thrust of directional energy and the emergent trends for social development that develop in following decades. Many things fall into place in the ensuing decades, but it seems to take until the two of them make their first waning square, 46 years later (in our present case), for a clear picture to emerge as to how successful or not the changes have been. Our experience of the mid-sixties Uranus/Pluto conjunction is going to be tested from 2012, when the first waning square gets under way.
Uranus's highest aspiration is liberation and transcendence from anything which confines, oppresses and limits. In science and technology, it manifests as innovation, allowing societies new freedom and liberation from the old. Pluto is the raw, undiluted power pushing vital force into the centre of everything living. Pluto manifests as the need for survival and the will to power and procreation. Pluto is power, which makes life run, allowing each human to achieve the completeness of Uranus.
Lessons and Testing Times
Coming in four years these two psychological giants, Pluto and Uranus will jolt together in a full-on square aspect to each other in their lengthy solar orbits. Our lessons learnt from the mid-sixties are to be tested from 2012-2015 when it gets under way, coinciding exactly with the end of the Mayan Long Count Calendar and their 5,120 year cycle.
The square occurs seven times: -
- June and September 2012 – 8 degrees and 7 degrees Aries/ Capricorn
- May and November 2013 – 11 degrees and 9 degrees Aries/ Capricorn
- April and December 2014 – both at 13 degrees Aries/ Capricorn
- and finally doing the last deed together in March 2015 – 15 degrees Aries/Capricorn.
Uranus starts to pull away from Pluto in 2015, but they come back within a degree in early 2016. They are still travelling within 2 degrees of each other for the early part of 2016. It's not until 2018 that Uranus leaps away from Pluto to move into Taurus in May 2018. This is a long square dance by anybody's standards..!
In 1710 CE at the conjunction in Leo/Virgo, the first copyright act was introduced into England. In 1712 the last execution for witchcraft occurred in England and witch trials were abolished in Prussia. D.G. Fahrenheit invented the mercury thermometer with its temperature scale, and a French surgeon invented the fine pointed medical syringe. Meanwhile it was a time filled with all kinds of wars in Europe. In London in 1717, the Freemasonry movement was founded.
In the last Uranus/Pluto conjunction in Aries of the early 1850's, revolutions ran rampant throughout Europe. The workers' uprising in Paris is one example, as well as others in Rome, India, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Germany and Hungary. Every European capital city except London and St. Petersburg experienced some form of rebellion. Significantly, the conjunction coincided with the publication of Marx's Communist Manifesto in 1848, the establishment of the USA Women's Rights Movement in Seneca Falls, NY and the founding of the Theosophical Society. Interestingly the first safety matches (Aries is a ruler of fire) were developed in Germany and gold was discovered in California, starting the great gold rushes.
After the 1850s there was an opposition of Uranus/Pluto in 1901/1902 which seeded huge change in Europe and Asia. The Russian revolution of 1917 was built on the movements founded around 1900; the Chinese Manchu dynasty was toppled and Sun Yat-Sen elected president in 1911 through the Boxer Rebellions begun at the time in China. In 1898, the tiny Russian Social Democratic Labour Party, led by Vladimir Lenin, launched a revolution in Russia from 1905 onwards. Another profound event of the early 1900s was Henry Ford founding the Ford Motor Company in 1903, totally transforming personal transport on the planet.
Tempestuous Years: 1964-1968
The next great conjunction of 1965/66 in Virgo changed the world in ways that none before would have imagined (from 1964-1968). My experience of the 1960s is one of profound and utterly transforming change in society in both stability and in the relative peace on the planet (I'm aware some readers will not have been born then and don't have these rather extravagant memories). The USA was engaged in a war in Vietnam, the microchip was about to revolutionise information and the pop music revolution, free love, mind-expanding drugs (LSD, grass), hippies, peacenicks, street rioting around the world and civil unrest, as well as rapid technological change and rejection of toxic chemicals in food and agriculture and the subsequent demand for natural health approaches has propelled us into this current historical period.
There were riots in European cities and the Paris student revolution of May 1968, Czechoslovakia was invaded by the Russians and people fought back against tanks in the streets. The US Democratic convention of August 1968 became a massive street rebellion and a brutal police crackdown followed seen worldwide on TV – "The Whole World's Watching!". Black civil-rights leader Martin Luther King was assassinated in Memphis in the same year.
Quoting from Albie Thoms in an article in the Weekend Australian Magazine of January 5/6th 2008 titled 'The Year Our Hearts Broke', about 1968 and six prominent Australians' experiences then –
"All around the world there was this seething discontent. The Cold War was still going on, and only a few years before there'd been the Cuban Missile Crisis, when we nearly got blown off the face of the Earth. In '68 even Andy Warhol got shot. And there was this crazy cultural revolution going on in China in which students were binding up their teachers. ..... Everyone started self-medicating – I mean, the drugs were a response to that crazy world. Get stoned, try to find some alternative reality, because if this is reality, I don't want it. That's what we were trying to do with our art – suggest a space that your head could go that was different to the horror out there. Lightshows, improvised theatre and film became demonstrations of free association and dreamlike worlds. Surrealism was a big influence. The big record of the previous year was Sgt Peppers by the Beatles, which had a strong strain of surrealism; I Am The Walrus had topped the charts."
We experimented widely in the West with movements for peace, freedom, cultural change and rebellion from the status quo. In the East, in China, it was the Red Guard, the cultural revolution with Mao Tze-Dong's "let a thousand flowers bloom" and the destruction of the traditional order. It was revolution from the bottom up, versus revolution from the top down.
The late sixties also saw the deaths (Pluto) of a number of major pop stars of the earlier years – Jim Morrison of The Doors, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Mama Cass and Brian Jones of The Rolling Stones (I have since found out Brian Jones was murdered). All were brilliant musicians and all dying due to their own or others' misadventures.
However, the changes from this sixties period have still not been completely integrated into the world. Even now, for example, women are still neither paid equally, nor have they achieved independence and freedom in many societies on the planet. In some countries they are still executed or punished for the sexual crimes of the male. The impulses of the 1960's moved out into the world, yet they went underneath the radar again, to emerge only in little bits. By 1989 (the Uranus/Pluto semisquare) many of the sixties' principles were accepted by the mainstream, but the full effect of all the changes needed are yet to be tested after 2012.
Oil and Petrol Supply
When in 1903 Henry Ford began his revolution the world was poised to speed. In 1933 (a Uranus/Pluto square), Englishman Donald Campbell created a world land speed record at 272.46 mph (454 km/hr) and world auto production reached 50 million cars. In 1972/73 (post Uranus/Pluto conjunct) a world energy crisis began as a petrol shortage hit, which, coupled with an Arab oil embargo, forced cutbacks in petrol use around the planet. Now as we approach the latter part of the first decade of the 21st century, we have a looming crisis of 'Peak Oil', combined with the issues of expanding motor vehicle pollution and its effect on global climate, plus the impact of two emerging giant economies – India and China, both wanting to supply themselves with all the material goods we enjoy in our advanced Western economies.
A key material item they want is the motor car; with demands on oil supplies beginning to exceed the supply rate for pulling the stuff out of the ground, we face a big crisis of supply and demand on this planet. In 2012-2015 with Uranus/Pluto square, will we finally see the end of petrol and oil, and the combustion engine age as Peak Oil predictions reach their conclusion? New (now) experimental alternative technology will have to take its place.
2012-2015 may also see the monolithic institutions of government and mass capitalism being seriously crippled, or perhaps paralysed. Then, society's cohesion may start to come apart, reorganising around smaller bio-regions that will effectively be on their own to pick up the pieces. The first stages of financial meltdown are beginning now (over sub-prime mortgage housing loans) and this will eventually affect all commercial markets throughout the world, as well as banking and the financial stability of many institutions we take for granted. Any resulting depression might start off mildly, or suddenly, or it could even be in fits and starts. As Pluto is now in Capricorn (structures) the changes in financial systems and in the extent of government control will be huge.
Mayan Calendar Timing
The connections between Uranus/Pluto square and the Mayan calendar system begin to become apparent here. The Mayan calendar in its transpersonal form describes numbers of cycles through which the human race must pass, in order to reach a stage of growth wherein we have a conscious change that propels us into a new way of experiencing reality – a new way of experiencing the very basic fundamentals of emotions, matter and life. They call these the 'Great Cycles'.
Their 5125 year growth cycle is a very long timing system, measuring the development of the evolutionary consciousness of mankind on the planet. Their method of charting time is called the 'Long Count'. The exact timing of the beginning date of the Long Count falls on a date the Sun was in the zenith point at Izapa (which is now in modern Mexico), where the Long Count most likely was devised. The placement of this zero date has been agreed, by most archaeologists, to be on August 11th, 3114 BCE. Archaeologists believe it is this solar zenith day that the final ending date is based around, due to the count system.
The end of the current 'Great Cycle', which is part of the whole Long Count, falls exactly 1,872,000 days after the zenith-date, at 21st December 2012 and the day number tally is 13 times 144,000, the length of a Baktun (the Baktun measures 144,000 days or 394 years).
The end-date of 2012 is designated in the Long Count as 220.127.116.11.0 – which means that 13 baktuns, or 1,872,000 days, have passed since the Great Cycle beginning date. Those of you who are into numbers will see the significant figure 144,000 which occurs in many other cultures including even esoteric Christianity. The figure 13 also features in all Mayan cosmology as a fertility cycle number and as a key time measurement.
Thus, the Long Count calendar is based on extremely long cycles of time and is a readout for consciousness changes in the human race. Therefore the calendar is not based in a chronological physical reality, but instead expresses a divine timeplan that defines the very purpose and direction of life on Earth.
As the Long Count comes to an end in December 2012, we arrive at a time where there is a possible massive consciousness shift, which comes as the result of evolutionary changes experienced in the human race to that point. That consciousness shift unfolds over a period of time suggested by Carl Calleman in his book The Mayan Calendar and the Transformation of Consciousness published in 2004 (Bear & Co). He proposes it takes from October 2011 until December 21st, 2012 to be revealed and the date of revelation energy – October 28, 2011, is a beginning point for a 14 month shift time in people's perception of who and what they are. This fits neatly with the Uranus/Pluto square as in mid-2011, it's within one degree of orb and, by October, the two planets are moving towards their first squaring off in June 2012. (See more on the Mayan Calendar on www.mayanmajix.com).
A US astrologer by the name of Bill Herbst has written an excellent series of articles on the 1960's and the coming Uranus/Pluto events. You can find him on www.billherbst.com . Talking about Uranus/Pluto and 2012 he says....
"The very air we breathe will once again acquire the electric charge of Uranus-Pluto. Some of us will welcome this archetypal shift in the psychic atmosphere with sighs of relief. Others will be shocked awake in spite of themselves. Individual and collective reactions will be all over the map, of course, but the unifying feature provoked by whatever crises emerge will be the palpable sensation that anything is possible – evolution, revolution, transformation. Death and rebirth. "
As the Mayan Long Count comes to an end, we are presented with a new historical cycle as foretold by the Mayan Elders. This is to be the Fifth World (according to many indigenous prophecies) and this will be an era of change, peace and growth in human consciousness. I do not support the view that December 2012 is the end of the world, with catastrophes, global tidal waves (tsunamis) and pole shifts. I support the idea that it's more of a consciousness tsunami which will collectively sweep through our tired and failed old systems and renew them through our hearts and minds. The energy for this wave will not be from "out there" somewhere, as in some galactic explosion pulsing us with waves of energy, but it will be a collective process that does not have a separate "out there". Whatever happens on the physical plane within our galaxy will be matched by what happens inside our human hearts.
An understanding of the Uranus/Pluto energy of 2012-2015 will be very helpful to grasp right now, so as to give you an intellectual handle on it at this point in time. You can see the obvious – the Uranus/Pluto square plays out at the time of and after the 2012 Mayan Calendar End-date. This is the exciting and electrical energy of birth, death and breakthrough described by Bill Herbst. That's what was so incredible in the 1960s. Feelings of vital, sheer aliveness released us from our constraints back then. At least that's how I and millions of others saw it. Anything is soon possible – and could be by 2015!