Pluto Enters Aquarius

Bernadette Judaea
5 min readMar 22, 2023

The moon is new, its a new season (and an astrological new year), Saturn has freshly dipped into the watery depths of Pisces… and now we are all just waiting on Pluto.

Photo by Casey Horner on Unsplash

This anticipation is slow like the iconic build up in the score from the movie Jaws. Pluto is the planet of evolutionary transformation. The thing about evolution is it doesn’t happen within one organism. Evolutionary change happens over time and is a process that involves trade-offs. For there to be rebirth, there must be death.

For a few months, Pluto will be in the sign of Aquarius. He has spent the last 15 years in the sign of Capricorn. In terms of planetary shifts, Pluto’s are some of the biggest. We are likely to soon see what the new topics of discussion on the level of the collective will be.

Prior to Capricorn, Pluto was in Sagittarius from 1996–2009. I graduated in the year 2009, so the shift already promised to be life altering. From my perspective, 1996–2009 felt hopeful, which is absolutely a word to describe Sagittarius. Putting aside my feelings about progress as they are today, I felt like we were making progress as a collective.

Of course, a lot happened during that time. One of the most prominent events of my country was September 11, 2001. Sagittarius is also associated with expanding in the physical realm (not just the philosophical one), and therefore can be to do with things like foreign affairs. This was also the era of Y2K, a millennium bug would render our computers completely useless; another foreign invader. Maybe that’s a stretch but people were certainly afraid of a complete apocalypse. The fire of the gods was predicted to leave us helpless.

In 2008, our collective fear switched to the housing market. That correlates with the first dip of Pluto into Capricorn in January of 2008. Right after the housing market initially crashed in March of 2008, Pluto began retrograde motion back to the sign of Sagittarius. By June of 2008, Pluto had returned to the sign of Sagittarius where he remained until November of 2008. Since then, Pluto has been in the sign of Capricorn.

We have access to information now like never before in history. We have called into question our political structures, our banking systems, and the disgraceful way in which we harvest resources from this planet. Capricorn is one of the signs most associated with authority, and Pluto has crept through, slowly bringing about transformation in those arenas of life.

It will be a similar finale with this shift, only the themes are different. Our collective fear in Sagittarius from my perspective was a foreign invader (keeping in mind I was five years old in 1996). In Capricorn, the collective fear was our structures failing: the housing bubble, Occupy Wall Street, financial collapse, and Bitcoin, our hero.

What does Pluto in Aquarius look like in terms of collective fear? Can you help me spell A.I.? Is that a bird? Is that a plane? Is that a Chinese Spy Balloon? I don’t know, friends. All I do know is that it will be different. It will be other-worldly.

Aquarius defines itself by what it is not. It is a self-alienating air sign. This can veer into the terrifying presence of disgust. On the other end of the spectrum, Aquarius is the humanitarian. In either case, Aquarius is concerned with the collective, but in a way that allows it to serve and not necessarily have to socialize.

Aquarius wants the behind-the-scenes part of the project. To be known in a mysterious halo of a candle’s light. I’m drawing on this imagery from the fact that Aquarius (in Hellenistic Astrology) is ruled by the planet Saturn. Saturn is a planet that I typically describe as anything old, cold, or dusty. In some sense, it is the boundary between the Earthly realm and the Universe beyond. It creates a line of demarcation.

Being the borderline means Aquarius knows what its like in the Beyond. One side is kissed by the familiar and the other by the unknown. Yet, it is a fixed sign. Confident in this contradictory nature.

When we visit with the sign of Aquarius, we might be led to discerning between what to hold on to and what to change. The water-bearer cares for the baby in the bathwater. Who knows what this means in the collective? Not me, I’m a baby astrologer. I do see, however, themes of my life and paths I could take that would appear to be a higher expression of this energy.

One of those is that, though I am a baby astrologer, I’m an Astrologer. Its what I want to do for a living. Not because I want to take advantage of people (though that is the common take for people that don’t speak the language). I want to speak this language and live in harmony with the natural cycles of the universe. I genuinely feel a greater sense of peace when I practice this tradition. With this decision to be at greater peace in my everyday life, I have to accept people will disagree with my choices.

Things were much easier when I could talk about my job and its benefits that justified my existence. There’s a precedent for why I made choices to graduate and get a job in the real world to pay down debts I’d accumulated to go to school to get the job. It made a lot of sense at the time. Now it appears foolish, but I wouldn’t trade it. Despite the astronomical cost of my student loans, I really enjoyed being in school and it might genuinely be worth the price to me. The point is, people understand that route. It doesn’t confuse them. People don’t like to be confused. Or is it that we have gotten so used to not wanting to explain ourselves? By that, I mean me. I was interrogated quite a lot in my last relationship. I notice an aversion I have to people asking too many questions. Especially now that the way I am living is not a check-box list of five year plans.

You can’t consider all the options if you never look up from the path you are on. Take the time to look around and consider the roads not taken. Or don’t. I bring to mind that I am motivated by fear in my Human Design. The other paths call to me because I want to know them.

The last time Pluto was in Aquarius was 1778–1798. The end of the Revolutionary War, The French Revolution, the creation of the New York Stock Exchange. Perhaps these don’t seem related, and perhaps they aren’t. These are the myths of our time. They contain within them clues to the universal season. They are for each individual to find a unique pattern that is meaningful.