Christopher Plummer Wrestles With Pluto

Christopher Plummer is experiencing a professional whirlwind of acclaim, since November 2017. This renowned stage and screen star agreed at short notice to replace Kevin Spacey in the role of J. Paul Getty in Ridley Scott’s film All The Money In The World. He then garnered critical applause and a best supporting nod for the 2018 Oscars. In synchronistic fashion, he is also synthesizing important astrological transits that include an impressive Pluto opposition only offered to a generational cohort now marking their very elder years. Is it coincidence or something more akin to fate that brings a major Pluto transit into Plummer’s life just as he portrays the ultimate plutocrat, J. Paul Getty?

Pluto is an outer planet with an erratic orbit, spending 16 to 30 years in each astrological sign and orbiting the sun in about 248 years. Discovered in 1930, it is an ancient archetype associated with Hades, Greek god of the underworld and extending even further back to Ereshkigal and the Great Mother herself. In modern astrology, it is a transpersonal and communal energy which modulates an entire cohort’s response to regenerative and transformative change.

In a person’s natal chart, transiting Pluto will sooner or later aspect a natal planet or angle. Due to its slow movement, a Pluto transit may last several years, including a period of time before the actual transit, the direct and retrograde motion of the transit itself and the separation. No matter the type of aspect made or the duration, this outer planet will announce itself through dreams, vague unease or outright external demands for eliminative, regenerative and transforming change.

For most people, transiting Pluto will square the birth Pluto somewhere in the middle of life. Elders in their late 80’s and older may experience the opposition while no one will experience a Pluto natal return. Take for example Plummer’s fellow actor, Leo DiCaprio. He was born with Pluto in the sign of Libra. DiCaprio’s Pluto to natal Pluto opposition will occur only if he reaches age 99, in the year 2074.

From May 26, 1914 through October 07, 1937 – Pluto was roaming the ecliptic under the cardinal, water sign of Cancer. These 23 years included WWI and the years prior to WWII, the financial collapse of the Great Depression and the authoritarian regimes of the 1930’s. Plummer was born in 1929, amid the sweeping societal changes that challenged, revitalized and transformed the elemental concepts of home and what it could become. Almost 89 years later, Pluto now travels through the opposite sign of Capricorn and the world at large struggles with the regeneration and transformation of its political and social structures in light of climate change, economic inequality, sexual and gender liberation.

Please note: Pluto has defined zigs and zags before settling into an extended period in one sign. Pluto retrograded into Gemini then directed back into Cancer several times from Sep 1912 through May 1914. Similarly, the period after Oct 1937 Pluto moved forward into Leo then retrograded back into Cancer a few times from Oct 1937 to June 1939. It remained in Leo from June 13, 1939 until October 19, 1956 when a similar zig and zag occurred with Pluto moving into Virgo. Confused? Check an ephemeris for the specifics or visualize Pluto’s movement with an astrological software program.

Plummer along with his generation are intimately experiencing the Pluto in Capricorn traveling back and forth in opposition to his natal Pluto in Cancer. It signifies radical change in some area of Plummer’s life. Normally, it is a metaphorical death with resulting rebirth. Sometimes it is a battle with illness or a loss of a friend or partner that shakes up life, creating new priorities.   Something is lost or eliminated and within the newly created void a rebirth occurs.

A key to unlock the opposition is to review life events when transiting Pluto in Libra first squared Plummer’s natal Pluto in Cancer. The year would have been 1980 and Plummer just turned 50. Whatever rebalancing Pluto in Libra demanded of Plummer is now up for review as Pluto in Capricorn challenges the very structures and accomplishments made in the intervening years. The past plays a part in this transformation. You need to understand where you’ve been to realize where you need to go.

Plummer’s birth time is publically unknown, so there is no way to tell what house/sphere of life is affected by the current Pluto opposition (see chart above). At almost 89 years of age, it is reasonable to consider that Plummer may prefer to stay rooted in psychological and/or physical habits that have served him well. My counsel to Plummer and any other lucky elder undergoing a Pluto to Pluto opposition is to rely on the hard won wisdom you may have garnered through a long life. Surrendering and metabolizing the needed change are skills an elder already has. Professionally, Plummer has great experience entering and exiting on cue – Pluto asks that it be applied in his personal life.

Paul Getty died June 6, 1976 at the age of 83, leaving behind an estate then valued at $2 billon. A quote attributed to him perhaps sums up his general philosophy…”the meek shall inherit the earth, but not its mineral rights.” He died while Pluto in the guise of Libra transited his 9th house, proving even a billionaire must face the greatest of philosophical questions. Plummer in the role of this great plutocrat may have brought clarity to his own Pluto directed journey. If so, then he has won a cosmic prize far greater than another Oscar win could achieve.

 

Matt Lauer: Saturn Returns With Invoice Marked Due

On Wednesday, November 29, 2017, NBC fired veteran Today Show host, Matt Lauer for inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace. Viewed through an astrological lens, was his second Saturn return involved? Saturn returns every 28-29 years to its natal position and will demand an accounting of past actions before settling accounts and beginning the next cycle of life. Let’s investigate.

Lauer is 59 years old, soon to celebrate his 60th on December 30th of this year. Born in 1957 in New York City, Lauer’s birth time is unknown. Below, Lauer’s natal chart is set at 12N, which allows an astrologer to consider the planetary relationships…but not the ascendant, ruling planet of the chart or the spheres of life where the planetary energies play their parts.

Focus your gaze immediately on Lauer’s natal Sun in the sign of Capricorn, with Mercury in retrograde motion in Sagittarius followed by Saturn in the same natal sign. Natal Mercury retrograde speaks to an internal dialogue that exists before a person will speak the words of everyday life out loud. Paired with Saturn in a loose conjunction, there would be a cautious and skeptic tone added to Lauer’s speech that would extend to his belief systems as well.  Natal Saturn will also limit and discipline an unrestrained Sagittarian wit.

Lauer’s first Saturn return occurred in 1987 at the age of 29, with the planet transiting over natal Saturn three times: direct on Feb 10th, retrograde motion May 20th and completing the cycle in direct motion on Nov 8th. Whether processed internally, externally or most likely a combination of the two, Lauer experienced some sense of completion and adjusted life goals to complement the adult he had become. Note that his divorce from first wife Nancy Alspaugh was complete sometime in 1988.

Lauer’s second Saturn return occurred in December 2016, at the age of 58. This recent, one-time transit set in motion a scenario similar to that of a bill coming due. Public life was going well…Lauer weathered the criticism aimed at his election interviews with both Clinton and Trump while renewing his co-anchor contract thru 2018 with a yearly salary of a reported $20 million dollars.   What other life lessons was Saturn suggesting he learn?  And when?

It is now almost a year later with transiting Saturn and Mercury in Sagittarius having joined in conjunction with Lauer’s natal Mercury (see chart below). Fleet footed Mercury has delivered Saturn’s recurring message and it has illuminated both Lauer’s inner journey as well as conferred very public consequences based upon the many choices he made and lessons not learned over the last 29 years.  Mercury will turn retrograde December 3rd, suggesting that Lauer review the belief systems, gender and cultural mind sets that have lead to this destructive behavior.

Saturn in Capricorn will conjunct Lauer’s natal Sun through the year of 2018: direct motion March 27th, retrograde May 10th and direct on December 9th. Limitations along with taking responsibility for the consequences of past actions will test and challenge Lauer’s sense of self. No transiting planet operates alone and Lauer will experience Saturn’s boundaries and restrictions within the context of all the other energies of the chart.

If Lauer was a client and an accurate birth time was known, I would suggest looking towards the 8th house as well as where Pluto lies.  Precise and intense psychoanalytical examination, followed by elimination and hoped for transformation into a balanced, healthier psyche is certainly called for.

Matt Lauer’s journey continues and only time will tell what Saturn’s third return in 2046 will bring. Lauer will be 88 years old and will have grown not just older but perhaps wiser. Saturn would have it no other way.

Guillermo del Toro – At Home With Pluto

Guillermo del Toro – film director, screenwriter, creative auteur of fantastical monsters, evil men and empowered women. Who is the man?

The Art Gallery of Ontario’s current exhibit Guillermo del Toro: At Home With Monsters takes “inspiration from del Toro’s extraordinary imagination, reveals his creative process through his personal collection of art, artefacts, books, and props, all culled from Bleak House, del Toro’s creative haven located in Los Angeles.” (www.ago.ca)    I got a chance to view the show early on a quiet Sunday morning, before the normal crowds arrived. At every turn, del Toro’s genius springs up from the dark shadows of humanity’s beating heart and aligns him with the esoteric power of Pluto.

Born on October 9, 1964 in Guadalajara, Mexico, del Toro has no publically known birth time. As an astrologer though, I believe his work pulsates with the touch of Pluto’s underworld energy. With a bit of fantastical thinking of my own, I’ve chosen to rectify his birth time to 4:37 AM (see chart below), placing his natal new moon in the sign ruled by Pluto, in the critical degree of 29 Scorpio. This moon sits with Neptune in the 3rd house of day to day communication – gifting him with the drive to communicate the underworld energies of this passionate, intense new moon energy.

Pluto also dominates the Virgo ascendant angle in this natal chart – announcing the importance of Scorpion themes that the chart’s ruler, Mercury will communicate in the sphere of its influence, the 10th house of public life and career.  There will also be a need to physically and socially manifest Pluto thru the ASC and 1st house, with Mercurial wit and intelligence balanced on Libra’s fair scales of justice. 

In del Toro’s Wikipedia page, the claim is he picked up his father’s Super 8 camera at age 8 and began to make short films. Note in the dual chart below his natal Saturn is in the 6th house square the 3rd house Scorpio Moon. Del Toro must physically labor in the day to day of life to manifest the moon’s creativity. Around age 8, transiting Saturn in Gemini conjuncted the mid-heaven in three distinct hits and later conjuncted his natal North Node in Gemini, suggesting his early interest in film was no accident but part of a life’s plan.

 

In astrology land, I often look for serendipity in groups of 3 when working with a chart and more with an unknown birth time. For the purpose of brevity, I have counted the Scorpio moon as #1, the Saturn 10th house transit at age 8 as #2. Now for #3.

Once again as per Wikipedia, in 1997 the 33 y/o del Toro was given a $30 million budget to shoot the film Mimic for Miramax. Following this career coup, his father was kidnapped in Guadalajara, culminating in del Toro and his family’s involuntary exile from Mexico.

Del Toro’s 1977 chart below shows transiting in the 8th house of life and death, Saturn in martial Aries opposes del Toro’s natal Libra Sun located in the 2nd.

Astrology doesn’t necessarily express itself so concretely, but in this quick assessment the pieces fall together nicely. Saturn’s archetype of the elder comes alive:  it is del Toro’s father who is threatened in an 8th house life/death situation. Del Toro was literately forced to make the choice inherent in an opposition and chose a transformative, life giving 8th house move away from his country of birth.

Trick or treat – this is my Halloween gift to you. Know that this natal chart has been creatively rectified to suit a particular interpretation of one person’s birth on a particularly monstrous day. Reader be(a)ware!

The exhibit remains at the AGO until January 7th, 2018. Toronto is a great town for a weekend visit, so consider Guillermo del Toro in the light of both his creative work and natal astrological potential as he beckons you to join him At Home With Monsters.

 

Scorpio Sun: The Power of Desire

pablo-scorpion-waters

For people born under a Scorpio Sun (October 23 through November 21), their solar energy flows as currents of deep desire. Personal transformation is their birthright and many will spend a lifetime searching for it. The most publically famous will create success in their chosen field or sphere of influence, often overcoming personal crisis. Much like a phoenix rising from the ashes of despair, all Scorpios have the power to transform into a truer version of their authentic self. The less fortunate will flex their Scorpion tails in vengeful, sometimes violent arcs, wounding those around them until the final thrust stings themselves.

Scorpios dive deep and refresh themselves through the element of water, while displaying a fixed, often intense character. They are unusually passionate about something and will with laser like precision gather the resources needed to achieve their goals. Pluto, the god of the underworld, is this sign’s planetary ruler. Scorpions are adept at penetrating Pluto’s hidden realm to return with secret treasures brought forth to share under their Sun’s light.

Many Scorpios unconsciously gravitate towards the deeper mysteries of birth, sex, death and taxes, seeking careers in medicine, psychiatry, social work, or politics. The Scorpio police detective will operate undercover to foil a drug deal, while the Scorpio scientist may spend a lifetime discovering a cure for cancer. The soul standing in the shadow of their Scorpion Sun may be the crime boss living around the corner or the sex worker pursuing a college degree. Often the Scorpion native simply has an air of the unknowable, leaving you to ponder over the intense jealousy uncovered during a casual lunch with your Scorpion lover. Or a best pal born in early November may surprise you with a sarcastic comment that cuts to the truth of the matter.

The Plutonian actor Mathew McConaughey (Nov 4, 1969) won an Oscar for Best Actor in 2013 for his passionate, disciplined performance in the movie Dallas Buyers Club. Playing Ron Woodroof, McConaughey transformed himself physically into the rodeo rider suddenly diagnosed with AIDS, losing 22 pounds for the role. With brilliant artistry, McConaughey convey Woodroof’s struggle to obtain treatment along with the character’s renewed sense of human dignity even as death neared. This role capped McConaughey’s own Scorpion transformation from playing unremarkable romantic comedy characters to portraying complicated dramatic personas. Perhaps McConaughey powerful Scorpion Sun’s desire is best left in his own words: “I don’t want to revolve. I want to evolve. As a man, as a human, as a father, as a lover.”

Other famous Scorpions:

Hilary Clinton                       Oct 26, 1947

Leonardo DiCaprio             Nov 11, 1974

Future                                    Nov 20, 1983

Bill Gates                               Oct 28, 1955

Caitlyn Jenner                      Oct 28, 1949

Diana Krall                            Nov 16, 1942

k.d. Lang                                Nov 02, 1961

Lorde                                      Nov 07, 1996

Joni Mitchell                         Nov 07, 1943

Pele                                        Oct 23, 1940

Willow Smith                         Oct 31, 2000scorpio-rising

 

Plutonian Solar Returns

43 Coffee Record Here Comes the SunMary Fortier Shea is an accomplished astrologer who wrote the classic “Planets in Solar Returns”. With an MA in Counseling Psychology, Shea writes with compassion regarding the application of this predictive art for those who would use a solar return to plan ahead. Her gentle yet clear direction to take the high road in the manifestation of a solar return interpretation challenges her reader to grow in universal truth, while alerting them to other possible outcomes.

A clear example is given in her discussion of Pluto in the Solar Return’s 12th house. Pluto’s key concepts are incremental: a desire to maintain the status quo, an urge to purge or eliminate and the final growth towards transformation. In the shadows of the 12th house, Pluto stirs the unconscious into growth usually hidden behind the curtain of everyday activities. Whether the struggle centers on psychological angst rippling up to disturb the peace or hidden motives consciously applied, change is in the air. What that change is will become more apparent as Pluto begins to move towards the Ascendant and 1st House.

Shea reminds us that there are many levels to interpretation and manifestation with Pluto as with all the planets. “Personal motives must be put aside to truly understand the Plutonian process and work with it in its purest form. Those who are pure of heart and mind and soul become universal receptors, receiving information that needs to be on the earth plane. For this, there is no need for compensation or glory; it is enough to know.” Astrology is often associated with Uranus – the Great Awakener that shakes and rattles with lightning bolts of new understanding. The study and application of astrology though requires Plutonian transformation. Shea understands the complexity of such a transformation and provides counsel through the lens of Solar Returns. Congratulations are in order if Shea’s wise guidance wends its way through into other parts of your astrological toolkit.