Pluto, Jupiter, and the Galactic Core

By Tracy Delaney and Eric Francis

The Milky Way is a bright spiral galaxy, similar to M81, depicted above. Photo courtesy of APOD.

WE ARE currently experiencing a triple conjunction of Jupiter, Pluto and the Galactic Core, which we have been covering in recent weeks. Exact on Dec. 11, this would seem like a highly improbable triple alignment, since Pluto reaches the Galactic Core about once every 248 years, and Jupiter reaches the Galactic Core every 12 years. In crude odds, one would expect Jupiter to be near a Pluto/GC conjunction one out of 12 occurrences.

However, it turns out that if you search Pluto/GC alignments between 1263 and 2502, you find out that Jupiter is there four out of six times. It is a situation where something that is highly improbable happens fairly often — or at least in the current epoch of history. To really see the pattern, it would be necessary to search the alignments over many millennia. But astrology is full of odd synchronicities that seem to be saying something — if only you can figure out what it is.

As it works out, the “three body problem” is a classical issue in Newtonian physics. Can the alignments of three bodies be predicted with any accuracy? Is there a discernable pattern that can be established in time? Though I don’t really understand the details yet, work on this issue in the early 18th century helped establish the foundation for something called Chaos Theory that would emerge nearly two centuries later.

Here is a quick overview of all recent alignments of Pluto and the Galactic Core, considering the position of Jupiter. Note that the position of the Galactic Core, as do all fixed points, appears to move due to the precession effect — that is, the wobble of the Earth. Currently the core is close to 27 degrees of Sagittarius. 500 years ago, it was closer to 20 degrees of Sagittarius.

During the Pluto/GC alignment of 1263/64, Jupiter was in Pisces, far from the Galactic Core, so there was no triple alignment.

During the alignment of Pluto with the core during 1510/11/12, Jupiter was conjunct the GC in October of 1509, when Pluto was 5 degrees away at 15+ Sag. This is reasonably close — definitely in the neighborhood.

When Pluto was aligned with the core in 1758/59 (during what we think of as The Enlightenment, just prior to the American and French revolutions) there was a very close alignment — Jupiter was conjunct GC 19th Nov 1758, when Pluto was only 2 degrees away at 21+ Sag. This is the most recent Pluto/GC alignment and it was strikingly similar to the one we are experiencing now.

During the current alignment of Pluto and the Galactic Core (2006/07) there is a very close alignment — Jupiter is conjunct GC on 5th December, and Pluto is just over 1 degree past it.

The next alignment in 2254/55, Pluto/GC conjunction is at exactly 0 Capricorn, square the Aries point. When Jupiter reaches the GC a year later in December 2256, Pluto is 4 degrees away at 4+ Capricorn, still within orb for a triple conjunction.

When Pluto reaches the Galactic Core for the 2502/03 alignment, Jupiter is nowhere near. GC is now at 3+ Capricorn.

Hence on four out of six of the Pluto/GC alignments of the current epoch, Jupiter is within a few degrees.

Dancing Your Way to God

Dear Friend and Reader:

This is a combined Planet Waves article and Sagittarius birthday report. Were I to handle them separately, I would be describing the same things twice. The central event involves the conjunction of Jupiter, Pluto and the Galactic Core.

Gemini North adaptive optics image of Jupiter. Gemini Observatory ALTAIR Adaptive Optics Image.

IT WOULD BE difficult to overstate the case for Sagittarius birthdays — on this, the Earth’s next miniscule orbit of our hot marble of a Sun. In these days, the Sagittarius Sun happens to be conjunct an asteroid named for the muse of dance, Terpsichore; and another planet, much further out, involving a creation myth where the gods chant, drum and dance the world into existence — Quaoar.

This suggests we are in the midst of a cosmic creation cycle, and must do our best to move with the rhythm of the cosmic tune.

At this moment, Jupiter and Pluto are aligned with the Galactic Core, a rare triple conjunction that summons the end of the Pluto in Sagittarius era that began in 1995. The core of our Milky Way is located in late Sagittarius; Pluto has been dancing over the point for about 12 months, and now Jupiter — the planet of Sagittarius — has arrived as if to speed Pluto on his way into Capricorn.

For everyone, particularly those with strong mutable sign placements (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces), and particularly for Sagittarians, the Pluto in Sag era has been a time of nonstop transition. Around when Pluto entered Sagittarius, Chiron was at its closest point to the Sun, and therefore moving through the signs swiftly. During the past 15 years, most of us had about half of our lifetime Chiron transits as a result — each of which portends yet another sweeping transition, and there have been many. One peak was the relatively exciting Chiron-Pluto conjunction of Dec. 30, 1999. Another was the less-than-pleasant Saturn-Pluto opposition between the summer of 2001 and the spring of 2002.

The Mayan Factor

If there seems to be no end to the changes, and if the current of time seems to be carrying us ever swifter, consider this last fact: Pluto in Sagittarius is currently within two degrees of the position of the [Northern Hemisphere] winter solstice Sun — the degree of the “Mayan factor” and the instigation point of what we call 2012.

As of today’s edition, there are 1,841 days remaining until winter solstice 2012, the last day of the 13th Baktun of the Mayan long count. Given that the whole count is about 1.9 million days (5,125 years), that is not very long. We have driven clear across the country to grandma’s house, and are standing on the front porch the moment before knocking on the door. [This topic was referenced last week and last covered in detail in the June 2004 article, Day Zero].

The 2012 phenomenon involves the zone of space, and thus of consciousness, where Sagittarius meets Capricorn — that is, the location of the winter solstice Sun, and that is the location of the current triple conjunction of Jupiter, Pluto and the Galactic Core.

It is getting increasingly difficult to understate anything about Sagittarius as the years unfold, as the discoveries about your sign mount, and as potent, meaningful newly discovered planets show up there. Sagittarius — the sign of ‘the world’ and the one sign ruled by the Earth in Alice Bailey’s Esoteric Astrology — is the sign that takes us beyond what we know of as the world and pushes the limits of what we know about ourselves and the universe. If Sagittarius seems evasive, difficult to grasp or like it needs a lot of space around it, here we have an astronomical illustration.

The Human Factor

The existence of astrology raises a question: what is the human factor? How does this ‘affect’ someone born under Sagittarius, or any of us? For Sagittarius, I have been explaining this in the horoscopes, over and over, as the world changing from the inside out. When a factor like this appears in one’s own sign, it represents a fundamental realignment with oneself. The change is cellular, and it reaches throughout consciousness. And because Sagittarius exists in everyone’s chart, a similar process is taking place, somewhere, for all of us. Yet at the moment, we don’t need astrology charts to observe the astrology.

Illustration deannab.

Considering the somewhat superhuman nature of Sagittarius, we might have an idea how this feels — and it’s not necessarily comfortable. When you have to stretch the known bounds of your reality; when you need to consider time in a way that is something other than linear; when you need to go beyond your beliefs; when you are compelled to put your vision into action, it’s not necessarily easy, your body may not like the changes, and you may need to kiss the past and your ideas about it goodbye. It may occur to you that the time is now, and you’re not quite ready.

Well, imagine how you’ll feel in 2012 if you’re “not quite ready” then. This is excellent practice  in being not ready but willing. Too much of what we think of as readiness is really about willingness. Most of what people have achieved on this Earth would not have been achieved if they waited around for when they felt ready; indeed, many of the most substantial achievements happened because it was time for them to happen.

The pull of reality, or whatever you want to call it, is currently too powerful to bother resisting, no matter how you may feel.

Let’s consider the Galactic Core for a moment, currently the focus of attention in Sagittarius. This was discovered in the 1930s, as interference in transatlantic telephone cables (a perfectly Sagittarian symbol!).

Imagine the cluster of darkness (a black hole) and light (many stars grouped around it) that binds together our particular spiral in space, our home island. Despite its proximity to a black hole, a planet situated near the core never gets dark. The stars are so concentrated that, situated on a planet near one of them, it’s as bright at night as it is during the day — but the color of the sky must be profoundly different. And imagine the sunsets: one star drops below the horizon as thousands of others become visible, so bright that you might need to wear dark glasses to dim their rays. People there would welcome eclipses as rare intervals of darkness.

Pluto and its moons Charon, Nix, and Hydra photographed by the Hubble Space Telescope on February 15, 2006.

Then, there is the feeling — that of being so close to the dark matter at the core of the galaxy. There is a pull noticeable that some people experience on Earth — the compelling urge to grow and evolve; the constant attraction toward the heart of the matter; the impulse to meet one’s shadow self face to face. It is, unfortunately, extremely subtle; so subtle that something like sugar can blot it out entirely. Imagine a world where the core impulse to realize one’s most natural humanity was the strongest urge we could experience. Imagine that everyone felt it — including the leaders of society, and that the structures of the world were established to support and assist the development of our species in direct ways. Not, for instance, in our current method of “writhe in pain till you finally, grudgingly decide it’s okay to grow” or “exploit people till you crash and burn, then grudgingly concede you’re not God” methods of evolution.

Imagine if the yearning to express our potential, as individuals and as a species, were potent enough for the majority of us to respond to it openly, and also something we could do without shame or misgiving. Imagine if we embraced the physical, the metaphysical and what we call the ‘erotic’ urge to create and procreate as one experience. Imagine…

Where Imagination Meets Reality

For Sagittarius and in truth for all of us, the coming era of Pluto in Capricorn is about giving structure to our vision. In Sagittarius, Pluto is transiting from your 1st house to your 2nd house, and this is about a radical reevaluation of your values. There is the drive to independence, but moreover, there is the urgent necessity to plan, build and move in a structured way based on the vision you have been cultivating.

Whatever method Pluto may use, it calls attention and focus to wherever it is. That point in one’s chart, and the corresponding locations in life, will take on particularly intense emphasis. The 2nd house is about one’s personal resources; these must be structured, and that structure must be subject to adaptation. What is not loose or flexible enough to withstand change is likely to crumble.

Courtesy of Earth Observatory.

In particular, this includes your values system. While you can be a radical on many fronts, and put enormous energy into expanding into the unknown, you have a staunch traditional streak to you, and this is what is about to get its clock cleaned. There are elements of tradition that you need, such as being reflective; thinking in the long run, and being aware of the interconnected nature of things. But there are elements you do not need, such as over-structuring your affairs, rigidity and cheapness. The notion of possession and control over your resources, over people and even over yourself will limit you if you take it too far. Rather, look at the strength and power of what you possess, and its power to change you and work for change and progress in the world.

Pluto will basically do everything to ensure that your stated philosophy of life matches your values as you express them. Indeed, you may feel enormous compulsion to express your values and to impose them on others; while you are doing so, make sure you check back with yourself that they are your actual values based on your actual philosophy of living, now.

This holds true for anyone who is “putting Sagittarius to work” — that is, who is on what they term a spiritual path, a path of world service or global consciousness. Pluto will turn to Shiva for those who do not practice what they preach.

The emphasis on Capricorn will require everyone who has been cultivating a vision to think in terms of structure and systems, as well as to consider the leadership implications of what they do. Capricorn is about nothing if not leadership. For Sagittarius, this is about teaching by example; for the rest of us, its themes include making sure that we recognize the lasting value of our actions, and consider our choices as things that have long-term implications.

Terpsichore and Quaoar

Music must come before dance. Terpsichore says we need to hear and follow the muse; Quaoar reminds us that the music started before we were born. We were born into a creation story that was already underway before we arrived. But do we even hear the rhythm? Do we assume that because it was here when we arrived, that we cannot change it? Do we notice that there is choreography involved? Or do we feel free to shake our bones to the tones and rhythm? These are the questions of the moment.

Eric Francis

New Moon in Sagittarius

By Kirsti Melto and Eric Francis | Lunations

New Moon in Sagittarius — December 9, 2007, 23:03 UT. Chart by Solar Fire.

THE NEW MOON at 17+ degrees Sagittarius occurs near the Great Attractor and in exact conjunction with cubewano Quaoar. Also Mercury and plutino Ixion, which are even closer to the Great Attractor, are conjunct the Sun and Moon.

The Great Attractor is a fixed point at 14+ degrees Sagittarius. It is a bit mysterious, a kind of anti-Big Bang, a point pulling everything — including us — toward it, but nobody currently understands entirely what this point is. The Great Attractor has a tendency to make things bigger, to polarize situations and push people one way or the other. It is associated with distinct or even extreme opinions.

The exact conjunction of the Sun and Quaoar happens one and a half hours after the New Moon. Quaoar speaks to the rhythms and choreography into which we were born, as these manifest within the family pattern going back countless generations. It points to how we dance to the music of our own creation mythology more or less unconsciously. Quaoar is named for a Native American creation deity of the Tongva people from what is now Southern California.

Mercury conjuncts Ixion less than four hours after the New Moon. Ixion is named for a mythologized former king, a descendent of the god Ares (sometimes called Mars) and, notably, the first human to commit murder. Would-be rapist of the gods (in particular, Hera, whom he unsuccessfully tried to attack after Jupiter offered to help rehabilitate him from his act of killing another man), he is a squanderer of second chances.

Ixion suggests “what we are all capable of” and points to the common thread among all forms of violence, be they physical or emotional. Ixion is the pattern or psychological construction which says we cannot change our inherent nature no matter what the consequences or punishment. We can perhaps change, but Ixion represents the idea that we cannot. He relates to the collective memory of original sin (murder, not sex) and how this is recalled, perhaps subtly, in any experience of desire, transformation or passion.

Uranus in Pisces is opposing Typhon in Virgo. Typhon is “the first binary Centaur.” In mythology Typhon was the father of hot storm winds. All the aforementioned planets in Sagittarius are in square aspect to both Uranus and Typhon.

In Sagittarius on the Galactic Core are also Jupiter and Pluto close to their exact conjunction, which occurs on Dec. 11. Centaur planet Bienor, “the Strong One,” has squared Pluto on Dec. 8 and then later on the same day stationed direct at 28+ degrees Pisces.

Asteroid Juno in the first degree of Sagittarius squares the lunar nodes.

The Sun and Moon sextile Neptune, Mercury sextiles Chiron, Mars sextiles Saturn, and Neptune sextiles Eris.

1992 QB1, the first planet discovered beyond Pluto, and Eris, the first planet found after Pluto’s discovery in 1930 that has proved to be bigger than Pluto, are in conjunction at 20+ degrees Aries. This is a very rare event because of the length of their orbits.




Weekly Horoscope for Friday, Dec. 7, 2007, #692 – By ERIC FRANCIS

Aries (March 20-April 19)
There come times in life when you must rise above your fears, and this should be one of the easier ones. I suggest you make up your mind to allow other influences to have the deciding votes in your life. If you reach back deep into your past, you will remember a time when you possessed true self-assurance. It has become a little too fashionable, in my opinion, to perceive childhood as merely a source of trauma. Even if it was, there was something that existed previously that was afflicted, and that something is still available; you possess every personal resource you have ever had. You may feel like this will require a leap of faith. It will feel more like stepping across a brook than flying over the Grand Canyon.

Taurus (April 19-May 20)
You can feel the circumstances and needs from the opposite viewpoint, and you may be discovering that it’s not so opposite after all. That is the interesting thing about role-reversals — they reveal what we have in common more than they reveal what is different. The floor remains open for further discussion of the possibilities, and you may be piecing together the fact that your gain benefits everyone; another person’s gain benefits everyone; your mutual gains are good for all. You can at this juncture afford to set aside some of your conservative tendencies and explore possibilities that would have made you nervous to even think about not so long ago. That is the benefit of authentic confidence rather than its façade or image.

Gemini (May 20-June 21)
Basically, you have everything going for you. But in order to feel the wealth and abundance that are available, you need to let go of any attachments you have to scarcity and poverty. If you feel like you are lacking, you will be unlikely to notice the wealth, both spiritual and material, that is available. If you feel like you must withhold, you will be unlikely to share in the generosity that is available at this moment. Don’t take too long to make up your mind about whether this is really true. You have done plenty of intense pondering the past week or so, and you have broken the issue down to its most basic philosophical tenets. But these are not idle or academic theories you are working with; the question really amounts to whether your relationships benefit everyone involved. You must insist that they do, and be ready to receive what comes to you as a result.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)
This is likely to be one of the most interesting times in your life, perhaps going back six or seven years. There is so much activity that you may not feel like you have time to think. But think you must, and think carefully. Indeed, it would help to think out loud, so that you can enter a conscious relationship with both your ideas and your feelings. Mars retrograde in your sign assures that you are processing a lot. To be clearheaded, you need to do that consciously, and you need to stay in contact with the people you care about. They have more to offer you than you may imagine; indeed, they may be carrying some of the most vital pieces of the vision you have been developing. The less you keep to yourself, the better, and by that, I mean the steps to your conclusions and not just the conclusions themselves.

Leo (July 22-Aug. 23)
“No one can escape what they create – the Law of Karma” — or so read some graffiti in the tunnel between Squire and Farber halls at my old university. Perhaps we cannot escape, but we can keep creating. We can keep opening up the worlds of possibilities until we see one we can abide. There has hardly ever been a time when the creative process of your soul was stronger, though this is not the time to play with ideas; you are close to the point of perfect maturity, where your ideas become the only thing that guides your labor, your efforts, your designs. As the days pass, the chance that you can even think of doing work that lacks meaning, inspiration or passion is being reduced to nothing. You are being drawn as if by some cosmic force toward your one true mission; but it will not merely happen of its own accord. You must do it, and you must let it do you.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22)
As you’ve grown older, you have seen the many ways in which your inner life has become the dominant force in your world. It is true that most people live with a taboo against true introspection; you have pushed past this, but it has not been easy. Security struggles, struggling with the sense of being alone, the long debate over where you need to be geographically, and of course, coming up with a definition of what it means to be safe: all of these have dominated your life. At times it has seemed utterly useless; but I trust now you feel a flood of confirmation that you have gone through these moves for some excellent reasons. The revelations of your inner life seem to be flooding out into your family life, your community, your home and nearly every other aspect of your existence. The light you see around you is indeed your own light burning bright.

Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23)
You have everything you need; every option is open; and best of all, you don’t need to go anywhere to fulfill your mission. If you don’t know what that mission is, then you need to slow down. Indeed, if you do know what it is, it would also help to slow down — though at the moment, that may seem impossible. In truth, you need to trust, which will take a load of pressure off of your mind. So much is happening, you are processing so very much, and so little is certain, that the only solution is to have faith, and strive to do only your part. I know that in this world, particularly this world today, it may seem like there is no such thing as God’s plan. Somewhere in your heart or soul, you know that plan is guiding your steps, your thoughts and your words.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22)
You need to guide yourself gently through this breakthrough. Remember, you’re experiencing it from the inside, not the outside. You are not a spectator; you are not even a participant; you are the entity to whom the alchemical transformation is happening. There are many who say that Scorpio is the ultimate sign for the theme of control. As one born under this sign, you know you wrestle most days with the specific feeling of not having control. The truth is, you have exercised all the control you possibly can. You have guided your course right up to the gateway, and now you are about to go through, but to do so, you need to let go of the wheel. You may need to endure a moment of spinning wildly out of control, and if so, you’ll need to forget that such a thing even matters.

Sagittarius the archer.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22)
A small shift in viewpoint can change your perception of the entire world. This is particularly true now, because you are so close to the core of your reality. Therefore, make small moves; consider minor refinements to your perception rather than big ones; decisions that seem microscopic rather than global in nature. Since neither you nor anyone can predict the outcome of what is developing now, the wisest course of action is to treat these days with the utmost respect, and do your best to be aware above all other priorities. If you commit yourself to awareness, you will see everything you need to see; you will be told all you need to know. Then, you will know the moment you must make a crucial decision about who you are. Note, it may be in the form of a yes or no question, rather than a philosophical one.


Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20)
You may feel like your head is going to explode. In the Sixties, they used to call this getting your mind blown. That was a good thing, back then. Of course, it was easier when there were others who were ready and willing to let go of that collection of false notions and self-images that too-often substituted for an identity. But it isn’t always a matter of choice or of convenience — to blow away the remnants of history that ensnare us into believing we are [so much] less than we are. It may be daunting to consider how much potential you have, and it may be downright frightening to let go and experience your personality melting and your true identity emerging. Like it or not, that is what’s happening to you.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19)
Abandon any fear of considering your highest vision as a true possibility; of embracing your hopes and dreams, because they are embracing you. None of these things are idle fantasies now; they are burning like phosphorus, and can illuminate the thickest darkness of denial, lack of faith or loss of love. Your ideas don’t need a rational basis; you merely need to acknowledge what passes through your mind. When you feel or otherwise notice a cue to take action, move in that direction; when you have information that will influence a decision, apply it to that account immediately. You will not go wrong.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
It’s vital now that you answer to nothing but your own calling. As the last sign, you typically come in last place, or you expect to. You have many priorities other than the ones that serve you exclusively. Assuming you are not evil or truly demented, you have but a thin boundary between your best interests and those of the world. However, there is, at the moment, a stark division between your potential and that of the people around you. To the extent that ‘the world’ possesses potential, you are one of the people holding the torch. To the extent that you, personally, have potential, some large part of it is coming due at the present time, and not in subtle shades. Therefore, devote yourself exclusively to expressing, becoming and realizing that energy right now.

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