Myths that have come down through the ages represent great truths. The ancients knew those who were illumined would know the inner meaning of the myths while other would think of them as fairy tales. In mythology, Pluto was one of the twelve great Olympian gods who dwelt on Olympus. Zeus (Jupiter) was the chief. The oldest of the brothers was Saturn. To him was given the rulership of the earth and all that dwelt on it. He represents the first law of manifestation?the law of limitation. We all have to pass the tests of Saturn before we are free of the unlit self, the personality. Every one of us on earth is under Saturn's dominion as long as we are bound by the personality. The symbol shows the Moon, the unlit self, held down by the Cross, which is the symbol of earth living. In the Piscean Age this part of us had to be crucified. Not so in the Aquarian Age. The Avatar of this age will not be crucified. The personality will become the servant of the real Self, and take its proper place as a channel through which the power of the Essential Being can flow.
One of the Olympian gods was Poseidon, another name for Neptune, which rules a water sign. The three water signs are Cancer, ruled by the Moon; Scorpio, ruled by Pluto; and Pisces by Neptune. It is our belief that there is a very strong relationship between the higher aspect of Pluto, which is Minerva, and Neptune. Minerva, the higher symbol of Pluto is the symbol of spirit above the chalice, the Moon uplifted above the cross of earth manifestation. Pluto is the death of the separated self. Minerva is the regeneration and rebirth that brings us to the wisdom that is inherent in every child of earth.
Pluto, one of the brothers of the Olympian gods, was given the rulership of the underworld?all that was buried in the earth. It rules Scorpio, the sign of the death of the personality anthe birth of the soul. Every seed must be buried in the darkness of the earth before it can break out of its shell and come up into light. All growth must begin its life in the dark. Every seed, even a human seed, needs that darkness before it is ready to reach toward the light. Pluto represents that life in the dark. Minerva represents the light that is reached when the life force in the seed breaks its shell and pushes through the earth and grows toward that light.
Pluto is a dark planet, and it is part of an inferior solar system. The vibration of the earth is speeding up, and there will be those who cannot take the increased vibrations that are bombarding the earth to raise its vibratory keynote. All the evils that have been submerged and hidden for so long are being brought to the surface to be faced, cleansed, and changed. It is the Plutonian energy at work behind the chaos and confusion that is sweeping the planet. The ancient wrongs and evils must be eliminated. There is always the darkness before the dawn. The light that lies behind the outer aspect of Pluto will reveal itself if the individual will let it through.
Every energy that challenges us has two poles that act as attracting forces. As individuals we are pulled by both of them until we find the balancing force in the third force which is the center between the two opposing pulls. Pluto represents the underworld of the unconscious. It is an extremely powerful force which has rulership over the instinctive forces that lie buried deep in the unknown part of ourselves. Pluto wears a helmet, symbol of invisibility. Minerva also is pictured as wearing a helmet, and she sprang full grown from the head of Zeus. (Jupiter?Zeus?is the symbol of the Superconscious self.) There is a very negative side to Pluto. That side is as low as its higher aspect is high. When mob rule takes over, the negative side of this energy causes individuals to act far more viciously than any one of them would act by himself. In today's world the Hell's Angels and the Mafia are representative of this negative side of Pluto.
When we strike the highest vibration in our consciousness, there is an equal and opposite vibration struck in the deepest and lowest sub-basement of ourselves. The beast stirs and comes up for transmutation. This is the lower Scorpio aspect of Pluto, and shows the necessity of cleansing the swamp waters of the lower emotions. This explains why, after a spiritual retreat or a spiritual mountain-top experience, we have to come down to the valley and be plunged into earth matter to face the muck and mud in ourselves so that the light of Minerva (the insight we have gained) can dry it up. This is illustrated so well in the scriptures in the story of Moses. He had been on the mountaintop with God. Mountains are always the symbol of high peaks of spiritual consciousness. He came back to the valley and wondered what he was going to do with the wisdom he had gained. He heard the voice of God say, "Take off your shoes. The place on which you stand is holy ground." Shoes represent the covering of the understanding. He was being told that where he was at that moment was where he must work, and where he must bring in the light he had gained. Only by using the light we have gained right where we are functioning can we move on to greater opportunities and greater accomplishments.
Astrologers had known of the existence of Pluto since earliest times. The priest-astrologers of antiquity gave Pluto rulership of the land of the dead, Hades, and all the wealth beneath the surface of the earth. Astrologers were so certain of Pluto's existence before the announced discovery that there was little left to do except to study its physical characteristics and determine its place of rulership.
The search for the planet Pluto began when disturbances in the orbit of Neptune were recorded by astronomers. (It was when eccentricities were noticed in the orbit of Uranus that the search for Neptune began.)
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The announcement of the discovery of the planet Pluto was made on March 12,1930, from the Lowell Observatory at Flagstaff, Arizona. From the very beginning its affinity with the planet Neptune was very obvious. The discovery of Pluto was the result of research begun by Dr. Percival Lowell, in 1905. The planet was first noticed on a photographic search in January 1930. Once recognized, its course was followed on numerous photographic plates until the time of the announcement, made by Clyde Tombaugh, a member of the staff at the Lowell Observatory.
Pluto's statistics have raised more questions in scientific circles than they have answered?a Scorpio trait indeed! It is the farthest out (3.64 million miles) from the Sun, and it is the last planet added to those already known in our solar system. Even with the assistance of the most high-powered telescopes, Pluto cannot be seen with the naked eye. It appears only as a tiny dot on photographic film used in the highest powered and most advanced telescopes. In essence, only those who can respond positively to Neptune and its highly spiritual rays can hope to understand and respond rightly to the Minerva aspect of Pluto.
Pluto broke up a similarity that previously existed in mathematical proportions. With the exception of Mars (lower octave of Pluto), planets from the Sun out to Jupiter (largest planet in our system), increased in size proportionately. From Jupiter out to Neptune, they decreased in size proportionately. Pluto's size, about half the size of our own Earth, was too small to fit the formula. The distance from the Sun also followed an almost perfect mathematical progression, until the addition of Pluto. The orbits of the other planets follow a pattern in that they are almost parallel to each other. Pluto, on the other hand, differs from them in that it is more elliptical, and is tilted the greatest number of degrees with respect to the Earth's orbit. Pluto is the only planet which passes within the orbit of another planet. At perihelion it is closer to the Sun than Neptune is at its aphelion. Pluto does not seem to turn on its axis as do the rest of the planets. This is just one more aspect of its seeming lack of conformity to the natural laws of our solar system.
The above facts have led scientists and astrologers to believe that Pluto is not a natural planet in our solar system. They are correct. The planets beyond Saturn were given to us to speed up our earth's evolution. The term "Prisoner" or "Captive Planet" used in some discussions of Pluto may also be correct. It is truly a dark planet. Clairvoyant investigation shows it to be a prison house for those who over eons of time have refused to take the path of evolution. The fact that at its perihelion (the closest point to the Sun in her orbit) Pluto is closer to the Sun than Neptune at its aphelion (furthest position from the Sun in its orbit) gives food for thought to the spiritually curious student. If compassion and empathy (the very essence of Neptune) are as far away from the individual as is possible, a regeneration (Pluto) is necessary. Pluto, cover-up for Minerva, goddess of Wisdom, in its highest meaning relates to Universal Consciousness. There are some who have to go down into the darkness to find her. The descent into Hell (or Hades) of Dante's Divine Comedy gives a clue to the meaning of Pluto. There is always a descent into the darkness of the underworld of ourselves before we can ascend. At the beginning of Dante's Divine Comedy, he finds himself in a dark forest and very dejected. Then he sees a hill illuminated by the Sun, and meets Virgil who is the symbol of human reason. Dante sets out to climb the hill, but wild beasts, representing the unconscious darkness in himself, bar the way. He must first make the pilgrimage through (not around) Hell, or the depth of his own underworld.
During the time since the discovery of Pluto, the world has experienced wars, assassinations, a resurgence of violence, and gangland type organizations who parasitically live off the labor of the common man. There were those who quickly took note of the negative use of this energy and branded Pluto malefic, dark, and destructive. This is only partially true. Because it is dual there is also positive use of the same energy. If he so chooses man can use the line of least resistance and bring himself destruction and misery. When dealing with this most powerful radiation with wisdom and reason, the Minerva aspect of Pluto is in evidence, and the end result is a big step forward for mankind.
Coinciding with the discovery of Pluto was the famous kidnapping of the Lindberg baby. Pluto was given rulership over kidnapping. However, only those spiritually tuned in could see the Minerva aspect at work. Up until this time, there were no federal laws that were enforced against kidnapping. Through that kidnapping, the legislature was able to get laws passed which henceforth would protect all children.
The great work of Dr. Sygmund Freud, and later that of his student, Dr. Carl Jung, opened the realm of the unconscious for investigation. Pluto's discovery heralded a new day for man's thinking and feeling processes. The recognition that our fears were projections of our own unconscious served as an impetus to cause people to come to terms with the hidden side of themselves.
Scorpio, ruled by Pluto, can be either saint or devil. In its negative manifestations there is utter emotional confusion and subterranean destruction. There is conflict and instinctual self-defeatism. The negative Plutonian rays can be the most violent of any planetary radiations now known to man. Growth comes through painful experiences. Its positive manifestation is symbolized by Minerva, goddess of wisdom. It unites the head and the heart. The higher side of Pluto can bring illumination and Cosmic Consciousness.
Astrology - A Cosmic Science
by Isabel Hickey.
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About The Author
Isabel Hickey was an important pioneer and popularizer of spiritual astrology. This article is excerpted with permissions from "Astrology - A Cosmic Science", published by CRCS Publications, P.O. Box 1460, Sebastopol, CA 95473. The book can be ordered from the publisher ($14.95 + $2.25 shipping) or by clicking on the book cover above.