Pluto Retrograde – The Empty

Originally published on Heretical Oracles under the pen name Artemis.

“The universe is transformation; life is opinion.” – Marcus Aurelius

Effective Dates: April 20th- September 29th 2017

I’m going to be talking big themes here, because the outer planets care very little for our personal lives – especially Pluto way out there straddling oblivion.  What we call “Pluto” doesn’t give a fuck about your paradigm.  He doesn’t give a damn about your opinions or your beliefs or any other way you decorate reality.  We all cling to mass consensus, hoping that the greater society will pull us away from this primal energy; this creeping understanding of our own mortality and the immense, crushing power of the universe.  We know we cannot control it, but we sure as hell attempt to.  And if that fails, we desperately try and hide it from view.  We allow ourselves to be lulled into thinking that if we follow society’s prescribed formula that we will be safe from this looming, savage monster.   We become numb to the terror that is fed to us each day – hoping that we can become desensitized to death, violence, suffering, and inevitable transformation.  They bombard the televisions with blood and misery 24/7, and our watered down modern religions echo their sentiments with veiled ideas of peace and light all the while cradling heavy themes of this undercurrent of undiscriminating violence.

The Moon. These images of terror are an undercurrent in our reality. They call it “the underworld” because it always sits just under the conscious mind, threatening to emerge like zombie hands – grasping at your attempts to escape and swallowing you into a pit of despair time and time again. Ominous much? Well, Pluto is ominous as fuck. He is the elephant in the room. He is that dread that creeps over your shoulder no matter how pleasant a situation may be. He reminds you that you are mortal, that you will rot on the very earth on which you stand, and that this very moment, like all moments, is absolutely temporary. We try and capture experiences on camera, on paper with ink, or any myriad of ways, and hope that somehow we can last forever. We think passing on our memory to others by doing “good” and “epic” or even “notorious” deeds may accomplish this, but even Hitler/Alexander the Great/Gandhi/Aristotle will one day fade to nothing. The primordial chaos creates, but so too must it destroy to learn from it’s own personal karma (Kali Ma).

The Fountain. The universe, like the sun (as above so below), beats like a heart. Expand, contract, birth, re-birth, and then an explosion – the death, the return to void. Eventually, the universe will return to itself, possibly to start the cycle of creation all over again. Each moment we are dying and being renewed by the infinite well of the universe – the thing that we call “primordial chaos.” Chaos feels terrifying because it is completely, and utterly, uncontrollable. Our attempts to control it, to encapsulate it and dissect it, are met with fierce resistance. What we don’t realize is that these very attempts to control chaos are reflections for the chaos on itself. We, creation, are a lucid mirror for the primordial chaos. In Astrology, Pluto in your chart shows you how you will reckon with this force – how you will reflect the universe onto itself and how you will come to realize what the true reality is. Pluto is judgement – apocalypse in the true sense of the word, an “unveiling.” This is why the We are the veil itself, Heretics, and to see what we truly are, we must suspend our ego. The only way to do this is through death, after a life of intense reflection. Pluto is our preparation for the underworld, and only through passing it’s karmic lessons for us this lifetime will we be able to vanish into the chaos in peace. Chaos must reckon with itself, and we are it’s vehicle for doing so.     

Strength. Crowley calls the Strength card “Lust” and it has been referred to as “The Power” in a lot of tarot decks. It is commonly depicted as a delicate woman overpowering a massive lion. This is a metaphor for learning to live with our own beast nature in a “civilized” society. Venus retrograde in Aries couples with this Pluto Retrograde, Heretics, meaning we have our weapon of choice – our wild nature come to make itself known again. We waste too much energy trying to suppress our animal instincts when we can be using them to our advantage. Your animal side is what tells you when you have opportunity, when you have danger, when you can smell the love and lust or even hate off another’s skin. Our beast nature is Pluto, and we must exercise it, not exorcise it, for exorcising it would destroy us in the process. This transit seems to be all about getting in touch with the dirt of the world and learning to flow with it, like a wild river, and drawing from it’s power instead of blocking it out.  The primordial chaos is an integral part of us that we can never separate from, no matter how hard we try to tie bows around it’s neck and dictate manners to it. Without this ravishing wildness, the universe couldn’t create and thus couldn’t actually see itself for what it truly is.

Harness this energy, Heretics, and remember that an infinite power resides inside of you that no one can exorcise, no matter how much they blind you with hypnotism and propaganda. Do not forget your power. Do not forget your origins. Do not forget the millions of years of instinct that got us all to this point. This is our preparation for taking back our world, and we must not fear – we must not falter – do not attempt to smother your passion just because it is something society deems invaluable – for if we cannot harness our inner chaos, we cannot move mountains and crush the faulty systems in place in society like Pluto in Capricorn demands.          

Jupiter Square Pluto & Sextile Saturn – Paradise Lost

Originally published on Heretical Oracles under the pen name Artemis.

You never know how much you really believe anything until its truth of falsehood becomes a matter of life and death to you. It is easy to say you believe a rope to be strong and sound as long as you are merely using it to cord a box. But suppose you had to hang by that rope over a precipice. Wouldn’t you then first discover how much you really trusted it?” – C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

Effective Dates: November 2016- August 2017

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” – Pslam 23-4

A prayer is like a mantra.  You may need it through the dance these three planets perform during 2017, which I have dubbed the year of The Star (XVII).  We are about to descend into a year that is packed full of retrogrades, including the dreaded Venus retrograde in Aries at the end of a cruel winter.  “What do you mean, “descend,” Artemis?  Didn’t we just go through the year of the Tower?”  Haha yes, the tower tested our ability to destroy all of the false constructs in our life and present ourselves as we truly are so that we may begin living via our true will.  But the tests surely aren’t over.  The work is never over.  All I can tell you is what is next, and that is going to be a test to our faith – in ourselves, in everything and everyone.  Jupiter is the Queen of Cups and The Star all at once, indicating our hopeful intuitions are quite spot on.  There really is something we can do.  This really is our chance, but Saturn, as per usual, challenges us.  Are we willing to risk everything and trust in our instincts and intuition?  Are we willing to go through the pain and mental gnashing that is coming to us and still continue to trust our gut and heart?  Now that The Tower has crumbled and we are sitting in the rubble of our old life, are we going to have the faith it takes to follow The Star out of the deep, dark forest ahead of us that is 2017?

It is extraordinarily difficult to trust anything again once you see things start to fall around you.  The thing is, darlings, we knew all along.  We knew how our life – our country – really was and didn’t trust our goddamn instincts, and that is a huge part of this Saturn in Sagittarius transit that has been bombarding us the past couple of years.  We, as a species, when we feel we should collectively panic, we tell each other that we are merely over reacting.  There must be a rational explanation for all of this!   There must be a system we can employ to make sure that our results are better!  Eh, perhaps our goal is what is truly the flawed thing, hm?  We spend our whole life wrestling with the fact that we haven’t lived up to expectations that are handed to us by people who are just as broken and blind to the larger picture as we are.  We have a 1 week memory about most events and then stash them back in our subconscious, so that they can morph into strange phobias later on.  We all know what is going on, yet over intellectualize and destroy our instinctual knowing because we believe that no real knowledge can come from anywhere outside the intellect.  Unfortunately, the intellect can be blocked as well.  It can jam and bring us into paradoxical realms that are literal torture to walk through.  Saturn in Saggo with Jupiter inflating him is going to challenge our ability to have faith in ourselves, our instincts, our gut reactions to things.  If something feels wrong – off – out of harmony, it very likely is.  If you are bombarded with chaos, do you still have faith in the bigger picture?  Sometimes a plot twist is very much necessary to get you to where you really need to go.

“Step up to the fucking plate,” Saturn says.  He is heavy wielding The Magician and the Ace of Swords.  You have to understand the game that is being played and learn to play it yourself.  You are the manifester this coming year, and you will also be responsible and judged for your manifestations.  No pressure.  How can you keep yourself from fucking up?  Listen to your inner voice and inner child.  You always try and mute this vital part of you out because the things it has to say feel so fucking ridiculous sometimes, but you always know what you truly desire.  So fucking have the courage to actually act on it during this transit.  If you act on dreams that have been given to you instead of your own personal vision, this transit is going to be tough as fuck for you.

You are given a chance here, and this is a rare one at that, Heretics.  Uranus conj Eris right now is about to hit a second trigger point with Ceres in early 2017.  Since the late spring, these two have been creating a sort of primordial soup of chaos for us.  Chaos is like play-dough.  At first it may seem like it everything is going to shit and we are going to die under the collapse of the Tower, BUT it is also a fucking chance.

In chaos, there is fertility.” ― Anaïs Nin

Things are being rearranged and there are ways in now that there weren’t before.  As above so below, the political sphere reflects this and so does your life.  Sink or swim, folks, because Saturn is literally handing you Excalibur (Ace of Swords) and Merlin (The Magician), so now you must go forth and actually build your goddamn kingdom.  The challenge is very simple.  Saturn in Saggo asks, “Do you have faith in yourself and your vision?”  Well, do you?  Because, if you don’t, you’ll be building someone else’s empire for them in Saturn in Capricorn instead of your own.

Daddy Saturn is actually playing along quite well with Jupiter during this transit, but it will bring about a sort of spiritual zealotry.  AKA get ready for all sorts of crusaders to continue popping up, now more than ever with Jupiter adding his influence to the picture.  BUT this is good news as well because it’s going to light a fucking fire under the asses of all people to step up to their higher calling, and Jupiter in Libra is going to definitely help with bringing the tribe together through it’s transit (September 2016-September 2017).

Jupiter in Libra will be teaching us quite a few lessons about partnership / trust / and truth in the coming year.  As Libra he asks, “How can you have trust if you do not have truth?”  Jupiter in Libra demands justice – demands truth – and Saturn with the Ace of Swords while in Saggo tells me our higher vision can be obtained with this simple advice; you must be authentic.  If your gut and heart are telling you something, you must be authentic to that.

But Pluto is here to tell us that none of this is going to be easy.   That is, it wont be easy if you actually desire to evolve.  It is easy to give up and go lie under a rock while all of this immense transformation is going on around us, but you will still have to deal with the karma of your actions.  Yes, “inaction” is still action, and choosing to sit on your ass and let the world choose your destiny for you just throws you back into the torture device we call the wheel – meaning you’ll keep living out the same fucking scenarios with different faces over and fucking over again.  So fuck you might as well deal with them now.

Pluto in Capricorn is far from over yet.    We still have a few more years of Pluto completely overhauling government structures and the general way humans organize on large scales.  A lot of the time we don’t see the forest for the trees because we are so goddamn focused on the individual instances of destruction going on around us.  Pluto in Capricorn (Jupiter in general and Saturn in Saggo) all tell us to look at the big picture.   With the 3 of Pentacles, Pluto tells me there is a transformational process going on right now that has been in construction for a very long time.  Things are coming together whether we see them or not.  This year will represent a decision for humanity – in our personal lives and as a collective.  Will we rise up and fight for our collective vision, or will we succumb to the vision of the powerful minority?  These are BIG planets, folks, and they deal with BIG events.  Next year wont be a reprieve from this year, unless you are becoming comfortable with getting the shit kicked out of you.  You’ve got to keep the hope while the chaos and destruction is brewing around us, because it is directly challenging our ability to trust in ourselves as capable human beings who can actually manifest real change in this world.

The events of 2016 will settle in everyone’s consciousness differently.  People transcending their chains and realizing they don’t actually have to answer to anyone can be cause for concern just as much as it is a cause for celebration.  Yes, you really do not have to answer to anyone, but here is the thing, Heretics, we are all fucking stuck here together.  Like three kids crammed in the back of a sedan, we have to fucking learn how to get along.  Jupiter in Libra asks, how can you manifest your hopes and dreams and also help your fellow humans as well?  What is a truly just life for you in your community?  What is a truly just way for you to have relationships with others?  It’s going to be a fucking seesaw of a year, but we will be here to keep you guys updated along the way. Get ready to have your trust challenged, your ideas about relationships refined, and lots and lots of servings of “justice” in all of it’s flavors.

Pluto Direct – Event Horizon

Originally published on Heretical Oracles under the pen name Artemis.

“Don’t try to fix what we should break before it breaks us.” – Hagalaz, Rune Secrets

Effective Dates: September 26th 2016- April 20th 2017

The uncontrollable.  The unavoidable.  The dominating culture makes us believe we are above the ebb and flow of nature; that somehow there is a split and we are divorced from it.  We may have made it temporarily invisible (to us at least) but never powerless.  We are spooked when the world we ignore rears it’s head.  We try and sterilize sex, nullify death, and orchestrate birth.  We have a false assurance of control in this wild world.  We have a false assurance of control over our wild mind.  Believing there is any sense of true “control” is living in an illusion.  The dominating culture’s “control” over us is an illusion we can break.  Our governance is an illusion we can break.  All of these chains are breakable.  They are merely constructs we have built and solidified and forgotten that we had collectively built in the first place.  We forget about the underworld – the subconscious realms of our mind and of the world itself – the places of darkness outside of our perceived knowledge.  Our view is far too narrow and our memory far too faulty.

We take a perception and build structures without fully examining it from every angle.  Most of the time we forget that our tools of perception (or senses / our mind) are each limited in their ability to absorb all that is.  We build anyway.  We build walls.  We build spires.  We build cities.  We give perceptions a flag, an identity, and become nationalists.  We make them solid.  We punish those that don’t see them.  We attack anyone who threatens our new holy concept.  It takes a lot of force to bring a tower down to it’s foundations.  It takes even more force to bring down an entire city of lies.  You can go at your false perceptions brick by brick, but it could take a lifetime before you reach your illuminations.  Or you can go at your false perceptions via nuclear missiles (Pluto rules over weapons of mass destruction), and get that shit done in a couple of painful years.

Now, the good things can be just as painful as the bad if you’ve built a wall around your heart because of some concept of yourself you seeded there years ago.  When your heart expands, it is painful.  When a horrible truth is revealed, it is painful.  Pain prunes the excess and allows us to keep growing.  Sometimes it takes a radical change to get you out of a deep sleep.

What is transpiring in the sky is Pluto going direct in Capricorn – the devil goat.  Capricorn, who rules over empires, structure, the skeleton of material reality, how we relate to and trade material reality, etc etc, has been dealing with Pluto transiting through it’s field since the financial crash in 2008.  He isn’t done yet.  It will take until 2023 before we have completely dismantled and restructured the way that humans govern themselves and view material reality.  Look back into human history and our history of authoritarian regimes.  It’s going to take a lot to untie that knot.  It’s going to take a lot of shaking and rattling.  Painful transformation.  During these flips Pluto will do between retrograde and direct in Capricorn, you may experience a new transformation in your “work/career” or your personal financial state.  These vibrations effect us on a personal level as much as they effect the world at a macro level.  As above, so below.  Everything is interconnected and in far more ways than we are aware of.

With Pluto going direct, the “dark gods,” the forces of radical change, are being invoked back onto the stage.

“Om Kreem Kalikayai Namaha”

The God-form Kali has somewhat of a negative reputation among those who aren’t as familiar with her myth.  I mean, she is wearing a skirt made of arms and a necklace made of severed heads… she is a violent, evil force, right?  On the contrary, she is a protector.  A demon killer.  The one who will dismantle the illusions in your life and show you Truth.  She teaches us that the only way out of this world is the way we came in; and that was a bloody and painful process.  Kali, like Pluto, is tough love.  It is the hard thing that must be done, the painful piercing, the needle in the flesh that will bring you your healing.  By doing the hardest job of dismantling our illusions, Kali is in fact the most loving force.  We must surrender to the forces of transformation, relinquishing our false illusions so that we are not weighed down by them or we may suffocate from this force of change.

4 of Pentacles.  You held on to something/s.  You didn’t let something go, as you should have while Pluto was retrograding in the heavens.  You stowed it away and locked it up, believing that if it wasn’t in the light that it would exist in a sort of hyperbolic chamber of the mind; safe and sound, never to come out again.  But as those of us who read horror know, buried forces fester and stew – contort and devolve into simpler, primordial forms – and then come out on a dark night to eat us alive.  You can run as far as you’d like, but you can never get away from yourself.  Like a black hole, your essence will continue to pull you back to your center.  This means that you are going to have to break through layers of bullshit you have built along the way.  Don’t hold on to it.  It is a border you are creating, keeping you from the gravitational pull of who you are meant to be – that shining sun inside of you (this is why in Astrology, the sun sign is the sign of your goals and true essence).

The Devil.  Control is an illusion.  There is nothing I can do to control it – this dark, churning, destructive force inside of me that can never quite stay inside.  It needs to be released for a reason.  I need to understand why it must express itself in the way that it does, and learn how to shift myself so that the energy can do what it needs to do.  Where is the proper place to demonstrate this destructive force?

In the traditional devil card, two people stand with loose chains around their necks.  They may remove their modes of control at any time, but they choose to stay in their imprisoned world.  This is us, all of us, choosing to stay in our miserable confines.  We are stuck within Plato’s Cave, believing shadows to be pure forms and fearing the light.  Because confronting the truth of any situation means change, and change is painful and uncomfortable.  But Pluto is the uncontrollable and the unavoidable; it will bring you back to the things that need change like a black hole.  Prepare for your confrontations – with your shadow and the shadow of those who surround you.  Who or what have you handed your power to?  Your reminder of your relinquishment of your own power comes in cycles.  It will plague you like a ghost until you set off on your quest to get it back.

6 of Pentacles.  We made a bad deal.  It’s okay.  The scales always tip back, and they are tipping again.  We are in Libra season after all, and with Jupiter in Libra our focus is going to be justice.  We will take back what is ours, in our personal lives and in the collective.  The corruption in the structure of our governments and our personal lives cannot hide forever.  No one stays asleep forever.  The corruption is being exposed, and the more they (and we) try and cover it up, the more it looks like a parody of itself.  There comes a time in a dominant force’s life that it is confronted with something too mutable to break.  The people are like a sea, both individually and as a collective.  You can chop through the waves, but you will never destroy the whole.  There is a part of ourselves that is boundless – that is an infinite source that can never be broken.  When a dominant force is confronted with this source, it finally learns that its “power” is in fact an illusion.


Pluto Retrograde – Cocytus

Originally published on AstroGeek and Heretical Oracles under the pen name Artemis.

Effective Date- 4/17-9/25/16

Sometimes I feel like a Buddhist and I need to chant; sometimes a Baptist and I need to holler and shout; and sometimes I need to be a Catholic and need to purge my sins and confess. It just depends on where I am.” – Jill Scott

Pluto retrograde is a scary fucking time.  I mean, Pluto is already a scary fucking planet.  He is the dude that tells it like it is no matter the costs.  Those with prominent Pluto in their charts seem to carry around mega speakers and KABLAM energy anywhere they stomp.  This is because they are the reckoning.  They are the transformer.  They are death, the destroyer of words.  Get ready for nuclear bombs to set of inside your brain.  Pluto retrograde is on the horizon, and it’s in that devil of a goat of a sign ruled by super serious scary Saturn; Capricorn.

The one rune I pulled, Thurisaz (the thorn), is very clear with its meaning in this situation; total and utter war with the self + tilling of the soil.  You can’t plant new seeds if the soil is not fertile – if there is some harmful insect ready to eat anything you attempt to grow.  It’s going to be uncomfortable and it’s going to feel hollow, so I suggest you carry around a little light with you wherever you go – like a lantern.  Bring something or focus on something every day that brings some form of joy in your life.  In a lot of mystical circles it is tradition to purge before initiation.  Actors do this before they begin to learn a new character.  They must purge themselves, destroy the old character and rebirth into the personality of the new.

It seems Pluto wants us to purge and become the next version of ourselves.  Hopefully it’s someone you WANT to be as opposed to someone you are being forced to become.  Unconscious forces will be magnified, and psychological issues may erupt more than usual.  You can expect a lot of people to be snapping due to aggression, especially when Mercury retrograde and Mars retrograde join this Pluto retrograde.  Please realize that a lot of your aggression toward other people may be due to miscommunication and everyone dealing with deep psychological issues during this period.

Because Pluto rules in the macro sphere as well, this is likely to be a period of mass corruption and secret warfare.  I expect a lot of what is going to go on here will be purged out and emerge for the public sphere when Pluto goes direct in a few months.

The things that you really want, like money or power or fame or love, you will start to see all of the shadow reasons why you love these things.  You will see the rot that surrounds the edges of everything, and you will bring it out and transform it.  Or you will become more crippled and dead than before.  It’s your choice.  It’s always your choice.  Pluto is the god of the underworld and the reflection that being in this underworld brings, and these reflections are going to get violent.

The two cards I pulled for Pluto Retrograde are both Swords; 4 of Swords and 6 of Swords.

Swords represent air and the season of winter.  They talk to us about ideas, the intellect, communication, truth, power, deception and violence.  With two of these cards playing off of each other, this Pluto Retrograde is going to be extremely cerebral.  I would say that if you have issues with anxiety or depression, you should build some safety nets for yourself for this 5 month period.  If you can anchor yourself in correctly and narrow in on one issue at a time and truly dive (with support from those you truly trust to watch over you), you will succeed in purging the demons holding you back from taking your next step.  If you really don’t trust a fucking soul, you’re going to have to grit down big time right now.  It’s going to be a rough fight, especially with these other retrogrades joining Pluto (Saturn, Mars, Mercury).  You need to be hyper aware in this time because illusions will become thick.  If you practice, it is a good time to work with deities like Shiva.

Where 4 of Swords is forcing us to heal our inner wounds, the 6 of swords tells us to move the fuck on.  Hello!  Your boat has taken off (probably without you). Good job.  Now you’re going to have to swim out to it instead of sitting comfortably inside of it as you transit to the next shore.  We warned you about this boat in former sky watches – well there it goes.   Don’t let the things that you want vanish like a ship in the night.  Start swimming, face your fears, dive into the depths and get on that boat and move the fuck on.  If you don’t, you can bet you’ll be trapped in last year’s karmic wheel.  You don’t want to go through all that bullshit again, do you?  It’s time to illuminate, destroy, and transform.  I wish you all the best of luck.