Category Archives: Pluto enters Aquarius in 2024: some thoughts on a major step in ‘boldly go’-ing…

Saturn Pluto is on the march…fasten your seat belts!

A recurring theme in recent talks with colleagues and students has been the powerful impact on our collective and personal lives of the current transit of Jupiter through Scorpio, currently sextiling Scorpio’s ruler Pluto in Capricorn, potentised by Saturn’s recent entry into his own sign of Capricorn – and the start of his long march toward the 2020 Saturn/Pluto conjunction. We can already feel the exacting challenges of the latter combination beginning to build. 

As well as deep, long-standing institutional corruption of various kinds including sexual and financial being dredged, confronted and exposed, there seems to have been an outbreak of a greater sense of collective responsibility regarding how we are treating one another, and our planet. Here are just a couple of examples, from the UK:

The UK’s series “Blue Planet Two – oceans of wonder” fronted by that venerable and influential national treasure the 91 year old Sir Richard Attenborough, has been shown to huge audiences worldwide pricking our collective consciences into action regarding the damage plastic is doing to our oceans. Also in the UK, a minister for Loneliness has been appointed to co-ordinate attempts to tackle more effectively that scourge of modern living.

This upcoming January 2020 Saturn/Pluto conjunction in Capricorn – Saturn’s home sign – offers a strong earth/water signal as we move toward the Jupiter/Saturn conjunction in Aquarius at the end of 2020. We are being challenged to clean up our act in relation to our home planet, and behave with more integrity toward one another as a human community – or face the consequences.

We are moving from an emphasis on  planetary exploitation which characterised the Industrial Revolution and the whole materialist culture arising, to one of global social development – that of ideas, information, communication, and relationships – expedited by technology, for the coming 200 years or so.

So, despite the tough times we are living through and Saturn/Pluto’s upcoming challenges, I feel optimistic on the whole about the new order being birthed in the turmoil of ending, although we baby-boomers will likely not live to see it.

Pondering on Saturn/Pluto and its challenges – a topic of especial interest to me since I was born under an exact combination of those two and am still here (as far as I know…) – reminded me of a column I wrote for the UK’s Astrological Journal a while ago, which described a striking incident evoking Saturn/Pluto. Here it is:

‘…Something oddly unsettling happened to me on 1st June 2016. Not a surprise, you might say, with the Sun that day conjunct Mercury in Gemini square Jupiter in Virgo square Saturn in Sagittarius square Neptune in Pisces – all churning between 10-15 degrees of the Mutables: my Asc/Desc plus Mercury tossed and turned within this restless brew.

I was peacefully preparing some notes for an especially interesting-looking client booked in for that afternoon. I like noting when clients’ progressed planets change signs, or turn retro/direct, as their life pattern unfolds.This offers good material for enlightening contemplation and discussion. But it’s not something you can quickly and easily do using a computer.

So – I reached for my 20th century Midnight Ephemeris, turned to the 1990s, and made an unpleasant discovery. Someone had torn out pages from the 1990s. But not random pages. The whole of 1993 and 1994. Nothing else was damaged.

There were two possibilities, given that I had purchased this ephemeris second hand on moving into my current office in January 2015. One – someone with keys to my office had come in and torn out specific pages at some point in the last year or so. (You’d never spot my MercurySaturnPluto line-up here, surely…)

Or two – the more credible – whoever sold the ephemeris had hated those two years so much that he/she had taken their revenge via this act of Mercurial vandalism. It was odd, however, that I had not noticed the damage earlier…

What to do, now that I had a maimed ephemeris? Every client from now till forever, I thought, is BOUND to be born in the 1990s or have key life events happening then which require close symbolic examination and elucidation. With the passage of decades, one becomes fully cognisant of Sod’s frequently malign intentions …

Whilst reluctantly concluding, therefore, that a new ephemeris was probably required, a sudden memory lit up my grumpy, puzzled, somewhat paranoid mental processes. During the 1990s, I had made up my own ephemeris for each year. Perhaps I could use two of those to cover the missing years? Had those ephemerides survived one of my periodic purges?

They had! Their distinctive, colourful covers impressed me. How arty I was, briefly, in the 1990s… included with the photocopied ephemeris pages were lined sheets of yellow paper for notes; these were full of astrological significators linked with personal and mundane events for 1991 to 1996. Why had I stopped then? No idea…

A morning was spent browsing through those notes, focusing especially on the two missing years of 1993-4; what a harrowing read! Staggering out semi-traumatised into gorgeous sunshine, I restored balance by basking outside my favourite boho cafe. Sipping delicious coffee and feasting on sandwiches followed by jammy creamy fruit scones, I reflected on our –fortunately – well-developed capacity to forget grim events. How unpleasant and upsetting it is to be reminded.

These were awful, turbulent times: not only at a macro level, but also in our small personal worlds…many of us ‘plugged in” to the same degrees as the major planetary patterns of those years suffered very considerably. I often found myself talking to clients about family traumas which in many cases closely mirrored my own.

From my notes, January 1993 “…the start of a momentous year, with a triple conjunction of Uranus/Neptune at 18/19 degrees Capricorn in February, August and October, AND a triple meeting between Saturn in Aquarius square Pluto in Scorpio from 24-27 degrees of their respective signs in March and October 1993, then January 1994…world situation incredibly unstable, turbulent and cruel throughout 1992 as exactitudes approached…”

The notes went on to describe planetary links to major oil spills, earthquakes, mudslides, volcanic eruptions…and that was just January and February 1993! There followed, as many of us will remember, ongoing IRA bombings on the UK mainland, the first attack on the World Trade Centre, attempts to stop a genocidal war in the Balkans, and horrific genocide in Ruanda…Worth quoting, from the UK’s ‘Sunday Times’ on 22/8/93, two days after the second exact Uranus/Neptune conjunction:

“Islamic fundamentalism, if it remains unchecked, could destabilise Egypt, Sudan, Africa, Middle East – the whole world community…” Grimly prescient.

I now understood why that mysterious reader had torn out 1993 and 1994. Feeling very reflective, and grateful that life had eventually reached calmer waters in recent times, I headed off home. There in the mail was a letter: the first for many years from a close relative – from whom I was forced to cut off contact in 1993/4.

As a famous scientist once observed, life is not only stranger than we suppose. It is stranger than we CAN suppose…’



This post was first published as my 8th Not the Astrology Column in the July/August 2016  Issue of the UK’s Astrological Journal, edited by Victor Olliver.




1200 words copyright Anne Whitaker 2018

Licensed under Creative Commons – for conditions see Home Page

Pluto enters Aquarius in 2024: some thoughts on a major step in ‘boldly go’-ing…

There I was two days ago, lying in a heap in bed, listening to the early morning news, slowly coming round, hand clutching a cup of tea. Situation normal in our house, of a morning. Then my ears pricked up. 

According to BBC Radio 4,  the first stone of the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT) had been ceremoniously laid only the previous day – on May 26, 2017. The ELT is an astronomical observatory and the world’s largest optical/near-infrared extremely large telescope now under construction. Part of the European Southern Observatory (ESO), it is located on top of Cerro Armazones in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile. (2)

Along with – probably – countless others like me (and not a few fellow astrologers, I bet!)  not coming from a scientific background but with a lifelong interest in science, I had been following the progress of this project with great interest.

The ELT will tackle   ‘…the biggest scientific challenges of our time, and aim for a number of notable firsts, including tracking down Earth-like planets around other stars in the “habitable zones” where life could exist — one of the Holy Grails of modern observational astronomy.

It will also perform ”stellar archaeology” in nearby galaxies, as well as make fundamental contributions to cosmology by measuring the properties of the first stars and galaxies and probing the nature of dark matter and dark energy. On top of this astronomers are also planning for the unexpected — new and unforeseeable questions will surely arise (my emphases) from the new discoveries made with the ELT. The ELT may, eventually, revolutionise our perception of the Universe, much as Galileo’s telescope did, 400 years ago…’ (1)

Approval for this stunning project came through on 11 June 2012,  with construction work on the site starting in June 2014.  By December 2014, over 90% of the total funding had been secured. The first stone of the telescope was ceremoniously laid on May 26, 2017. (2)

Pluto direct into Aquarius

Pluto direct into Aquarius

Now – here is the bit that made me sit bolt upright, almost spilling my tea:

First light, ie the first use of a telescope (or, in general, a new instrument) to take an astronomical image after it has been constructed,  is currently planned for  – 2024(2)

Yes, 2024, the year that Pluto fully enters Aquarius after dipping in and out of that sign during its slow exit from Capricorn in 2013/4.The two statements ‘… probing the nature of dark matter and dark energy…’ and ‘… planning for the unexpected — new and unforeseeable questions will surely arise…’ could hardly be more appropriate summaries of the essence of this momentous planetary shift of the most symbolically powerful, transformative planet Pluto into Aquarius: the most scientifically oriented, unpredictable, revolutionary sign of the zodiac.

This entry of Pluto into Aquarius represents a major stage in a lengthy process of radical change for our world which I summarised very briefly in a recent post on this blog:

‘…Next up, Pluto shifts from Capricorn into Aquarius in 2024, beginning a long trine aspect to the 1892 Neptune/Pluto conjunction in Gemini. More air. The next Uranus/ Neptune conjunction, in 2165, will take place in early Aquarius, their first meeting in the air element for a thousand years. 

Thus, since 1980, when the Jupiter/Saturn conjunction at 5-8 Libra  entered the air element for the first time since its last entry in the twelfth century A.D, we have been moving gradually into an air-dominated era, with the sign of Aquarius in high focus. We are moving from an emphasis on material development and planetary exploitation  which characterised the Industrial Revolution and the whole materialist culture arising, to one of global social development – that of ideas, information, communication, and relationships – expedited by technology, for the coming 200 years or so….’ (3)

By now, I was fully awake, excited – and once again awestruck by the powerful symbolic links between major steps taken in the human project for good or ill – usually both!! – and major planetary shifts. The first light of the Extremely Large Telescope in 2024 is just one bright strand in what will be a complex and intricate weave of all kinds of profound changes from 2024 onwards, which will usher in a radically different world from the one into which we Baby-Boomers were born… let’s hope the upcoming generations make a more constructive job of it than we have done.







700 words copyright Anne Whitaker 2017
Licensed under Creative Commons – for conditions see Home Page