During the summer of 1851, an extremely rare conjunction of planets took place in the first 3 degrees of Taurus. On the very day that Mars joined Saturn, Uranus, and Pluto there, Harriet Beecher Stowe published the first in her popular series of articles that, a year later, became her nation-changing novel Uncle Tom's Cabin. That same year, Melville's classic tale of excessive ambition, Moby Dick, was also published.
In a single year these two literary firebrands stamped the world with the two primary themes that were to define the second half of the 19th century in America: The abolition of slavery and, less directly in Melville's case, the extreme rise of industrial capitalism.
While Mars and Saturn certainly play a role in understanding these themes and their place in this moment of history, it is the Uranus-Pluto cycle that speaks most directly. Uranus is connected with technology and social concerns. Pluto represents deeply hidden power and wealth. Whereas Uranus corresponds with sudden, explosive change, Pluto is akin to the compressed magma under a volcano, hidden from sight yet roiling with an unfathomable energy. Pluto's intense potency requires a catalyst to encourage its cathartic release and allow its hidden power to become incorporated on the surface. Uranus's sudden, electrifying strike often provides that catalyst. Like the coming eruptions of war and avarice hinted at by Uncle Tom and Moby Dick, Uranus and Pluto acting together give us a sense of an erupting volcano that forever transforms the face of the planet and even the fate of humanity itself.
As Uranus and Pluto come into significant alignment certain themes repeat themselves with impressive regularity. A prominent example in recent centuries is the emergence of industrial revolutions. Like the Uranus-Pluto trine (120º) of the 1760s/70s that kicked off the First Industrial Revolution, the Uranus-Pluto sextile (60º) of the early 1870s kicked off the Second Industrial Revolution. The following sextile almost 80 years later, the end of World War II, marks the beginning of the Third Industrial Revolution.
This is appropriate to the astrological symbolism: Uranus is specifically correlated with cultural revolutions along with new technologies and their dissemination throughout society. Pluto correlates with the deep underground power sources that fuel these technologies, be they coal, oil, or steam (or venture capital). The sextile and trine alignments typically give functional form to whatever is aligned, so that, in this case, the power inherent in the Plutonic energy is harnessed and utilized by the newly architected Uranian inventions.
Today, we are on the cusp of entering just such a period. The Uranus-Pluto trine of 2024-2030 will no doubt bring into the forefront new technologies that revolutionize travel, commerce, and energy, creating what is thought to become a Fourth Industrial Revolution.Continue reading