Pluto is the slowest moving of all the astrological planets. It takes Pluto between 12 and 28 years to move through a single zodiac sign - the time for each transit varies due to Pluto’s oval-shaped orbit around the Sun.
Pluto’s astrological energy is transformational. It symbolizes renewal, regeneration, and revolution. It is associated with sex, death, and life’s primal urge for survival, and its energy can also be obsessive, compulsive, and controlling - Pluto is about the use and misuse of power, fundamentally.
Because Pluto moves so slowly, astrologers call it a ‘generational planet’ - its energies tend to shape eras in society as a whole. However, if you are a Scorpio, Pluto is your ruling planet and has a much more personal influence.
This planet is also personalized in your chart if you have a Scorpio Ascendant or Moon, if Pluto at the time of your birth was close to important angles in your natal birth chart, or if it creates strong astrological aspects with any other planet.
Nobody alive today has experienced Pluto in any signs other than Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, or Capricorn. But that is about to change - because on March 23rd, 2023, Pluto will end its 15-year journey through Capricorn and move into Aquarius - in what some astrologers believe marks the true start of the Age of Aquarius.
It won’t fully settle into Aquarius until 2024, due to its retrograde motion in 2023, but then Pluto will stay in Aquarius for 21 years until January 2044, when it will move into Pisces. Pluto won’t return to Aquarius for nearly 250 years.
Pluto was last in Aquarius between 1778 and 1798 - a tumultuous period in history that saw the industrial revolution, the French revolution, the Enlightenment, and the ratification of the US constitution.
This time around, we can also expect upheaval in society.
Aquarius is an intellectual air sign that trades in ideas and innovation. It was the English philosopher and statesman Sir Francis Bacon who coined the phrase ‘knowledge is power’ in the 16th century, but we might usefully borrow this for the modern era - Pluto’s transit through Aquarius is likely to be defined by the fact that ‘information is power’.
The control of ideas and intellectual arguments will be key to the way society is re-shaped - and re-shaped it is almost bound to be because that’s simply what Pluto does.
Prevailing ideologies will be shredded and new ones founded; propaganda and information manipulation will become a serious problem for society, and we may even see a divide between those people ‘in the know’ and those left deliberately out of the information power circles.
Aquarius as a zodiac sign also represents individuality and freedom. Yet Pluto, with its need to control, tends to battle individual freedoms, in favor of transforming collective experience.
Will we see an erosion of individual rights with the rationale that such erosion is best for humankind collectively? Perhaps.
Technology will become increasingly important in our lives, with Aquarius being heavily associated with emerging tech of all kinds. However, as Pluto tears up the rule book, we may discover that new technologies have more power over us than we might like - or more power than most of us will understand until, perhaps, it’s too late.
This may sound alarming and dystopian, but of course, it won’t happen overnight. There will be a gradual emergence of these themes over the next 19 years, which gives us collectively plenty of time to influence society’s direction and choices.
Don’t forget that Aquarius’ driving rationale is a humanitarian one. If the will of the people is there, Pluto’s transit through Aquarius could also harness technology for enormous good, and could fight back very effectively against the erosion of rights and the damage being done by globalization.
It’s important to remember that Pluto’s change of sign is not just the beginning of a new era; it’s also the end of an old one as Pluto leaves Capricorn. In the area of your natal chart most influenced by Capricorn, each of us will feel a release of pressure as Pluto moves on, and a greater sense of autonomy will return to those areas of our lives.
Here’s a glimpse at what Pluto in Aquarius might mean for YOUR zodiac sign. For every sign, you will never before have experienced Pluto’s transit through this new area of your chart. Don’t expect to feel anything dramatic immediately, but there are key themes that will subtly shape your coming decades.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are an Aries (Aries dates: March 20th – April 19th)
As Pluto leaves the very top of your chart, you will begin to feel more in control of your career direction. However, you can expect some radical shakeups to your social circle over the coming decades. You will probably want to socialize more with people who share your beliefs and ideology, and less with those who don’t.
You may also join groups and societies to that end, and become more closed-minded to other points of view. On the plus side, Pluto will overhaul your long-term goals and objectives, putting your more in touch with your true cosmic alignment.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Taurus (Taurus dates: April 20th – May 20th)
As Pluto changes signs, you will gradually become more of an international citizen, less focused on your own nation and more embracing of all things and people ‘foreign’ to you. However, once Pluto settles at the top of your chart, intense ambition will take over, and you may become obsessed with seeking success.
This is not a bad thing in itself, but you will need to be careful not to allow a workaholic attitude to destroy the other good things in your life. Stress relief will be important, and you should try to avoid becoming paranoid or feeling that others are trying to undermine you.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Gemini (Gemini dates: May 21st – June 20th)
With Pluto leaving the ‘shared money’ zone of your natal birth chart, you will feel less concerned about materialism and open to a more philosophical, spiritual approach to life. Gradual but deep changes to your beliefs will emerge, prompted by a desire for intense study.
You’ll be driven to broaden your horizons and take on new qualifications, and as your life philosophy shifts, you’ll want to disown some of your previous opinions or stances. The natural teacher in you emerges and you can make a real difference by sharing your wisdom. Profound experiences through travel may also shape the coming decades.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Cancer (Cancer dates: June 21st – July 21st)
Pluto is leaving your opposite sign after 15 long years of stress in your relationships. This is a breath of fresh air for you, and certainly good news for your love life. However, powerful emotions around sex, jealousy, and infidelity may complicate matters moving forward.
You may feel drawn to impossibly unsuitable people, or fascinated by someone who you know is not good for you. There could also be power struggles, especially about finances. Personal happiness over the next decades may be tinged by periods of extreme highs and lows, especially if you surround yourself with toxic people.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Leo (Leo dates: July 22nd – August 21st)
Pluto’s lengthy transit through the well-being zone of your natal birth chart has been something of a struggle, although you have emerged from it stronger, mentally, emotionally, and physically. Now with Pluto settling into your opposite sign, you can expect profound shifts in your relationships.
Power struggles with your partner may feel intense, and you may feel trapped by your fear of being alone. Finding your freedom and individuality within a loving relationship may be difficult, but it can be done. Persevere and don’t allow unfounded feelings of jealousy or suspicion to cloud your judgment. This transit is about restructuring your relationships so that they work for this period in your life.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Virgo (Virgo dates: August 22nd – September 21st)
Pluto’s change of signs brings to an end a period of intense creativity for you, during which you’ve mastered some amazing skills and pursued your passions at will. Now, Pluto asks you to concentrate more on your responsibilities. This can be a stressful transit in that regard, which is why you will also need to work on your holistic well-being.
Create new daily routines that allow you to breathe and thrive, including mind-body-spirit practices that help you to live life to the full. Your healing skills are likely to grow during this period, but your relationship with colleagues may worsen as you would prefer to work alone.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Libra (Libra dates: September 22nd – October 22nd)
Pluto leaves the very bottom of your chart as it changes signs, and this relieves some of the pressure you have been feeling about your family, your roots, your past, and your identity. The next couple of decades bring breakthroughs in your creative abilities, so be sure to pursue your hobbies and artistic interests to the max.
If you have children, however, beware of a desire to control their lives. It’s important now that you allow other people to make their own mistakes. Take a step back from being the one in charge; pursue and master your own interests and let others live their lives as they see fit.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Scorpio (Scorpio dates: October 23rd – November 21st)
Pluto is your ruling planet, so this transit is a very big deal for you and will have more of an immediate impact on you than on most other signs. You have been on a quest for truth over the last 15 years, reading, learning, and researching.
Now Pluto asks you instead to focus on the need for transformation in your home life. This may be literal, in terms of house moves or an expanding family, but it will also be deeply psychological, challenging your notion of ‘home’ and security. Explore your roots carefully and look for answers in your past lives too. Childhood experiences, whether pleasant or traumatic, can teach you a great deal now.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Sagittarius (Sagittarius dates: November 22nd – December 20th)
Pluto is leaving the money zone of your natal birth chart, ending a period in which you’ve questioned the notion of financial security, and experienced extreme highs and lows in your abundance.
Now it’s time for you to focus on learning. Pluto’s new transit will be a period of information gathering and research; this could be where you will earn your living, or it may be a private interest, but you will feel driven to uncover absolutely everything you can about a topic that obsesses you. Don’t allow this obsession to get in the way of your everyday life and loves, however.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Capricorn (Capricorn dates: December 21st – January 18th)
Pluto is leaving Capricorn, after 15 years when you will have felt a need to control everything and everyone around you. In many ways, this is a relief, and you can start to relax more now.
However, Pluto is moving into the money zone of your natal birth chart, so over the next decades, you may experience a drive to possess more - more wealth, more ‘stuff’, more everything. This drive is not a bad thing, but it can become obsessive. Remember that money is not the be-all and end-all in life; your pursuit of it in years to come may cost you dearly if you do not recognize its power over you.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are an Aquarius (Aquarius dates: January 19th – February 17th)
Pluto is leaving the most spiritual sector of your natal birth chart, where over the past 15 years you have experienced great growth and emerging power. Its arrival in Aquarius is a landmark moment in your life - statistically, most people do not get to experience Pluto in their sign during their lifetime.
The coming decades will be about learning what you can and cannot control, and how to live gracefully with those restrictions. You may attain great power, but you may also be tempted to use that power immorally. Strong ethics will be vital; if you keep walking the highest path, you will emerge from this transit more powerful than ever before, but also wiser, kinder, and more spiritually evolved.
Pluto in Aquarius if you are a Pisces (Pisces dates: February 18th – March 19th)
As Pluto leaves the humanitarian zone of your natal birth chart, you may find that your campaigning zeal lessens somewhat. It’s not that you don’t care anymore, but you sense that your priorities must now shift.
Once Pluto settles into the most secretive and spiritual zone of your natal birth chart, you can expect a psychological and spiritual purging process over the coming decades - you will begin to come to terms with any past life or childhood trauma, and you will start to process any guilt that you feel, which will be very good for your mental health. Dark dreams or nightmares may initially plague you, but your spiritual gifts will revolutionize your understanding of what lies beyond.