Today, we delve deeper into our series on astrological burnout, focusing on the anxiety surrounding Pluto transits. We'll discuss the common fears associated with Pluto and offer a fresh perspective on its positive and optimistic influences. Our aim is to improve your relationship with astrology, ensuring it remains a source of insight rather than stress.
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Hey everyone, this is Adam Elenbaas from Nightlight Astrology, and today, we are going to continue a series that I started earlier in the summer on how to avoid astrological burnout. A lot of people, students, clients, and subscribers tell me that, at times, astrology stresses them out, and a lot of that has to do with our fear of certain planets. Living with the fear that planets, especially certain planets, today, we're going to talk about Pluto; when transits are coming up either in your natal chart or in the sky, we get this anticipatory anxiety. Oh no, it's a Pluto transit like that.
In the first episode, I talked about sort of astrological fatigue and burnout and how to deal with it generally. Today, I want to deepen this series by looking in particular, and I think we'll do this for a series of videos on why we should not be afraid of, especially the outer planets, because they tend to be the planets that people have the most anxiety about, in my humble opinion along with Saturn.
So I think what we'll do today is we're going to start with Pluto, and we're going to say, look, Pluto is a planet that can contribute to astrological burnout, fatigue, and anxiety, and we don't want astrology to add stress to our lives. So we're going to talk about what we tend to fear that Pluto does or that Pluto brings, and then we're going to try to reframe and talk about what Pluto actually brings in a more positive and optimistic light and, in doing so, hopefully, this will help those of you out there who love astrology, but sometimes feel like it's creating anxiety in your life, to you know, to work through that and to work with it.
So, there are lots of different reasons that astrology can scare us or stress us out. A lot of that has to do with the quality of the content you listen to and where you get your information from, but it also has to do with just generally working through the assumptions that we have about the nature of the planet.
So today, we're going to talk about why you shouldn't be afraid of Pluto, and hopefully, this helps you to improve your relationship with astrology overall; that is our goal for today.
Don't forget to like and subscribe before we get started. It helps the channel to grow. I love it when you guys share your comments and reflections, and, in particular, I'd love to hear your thoughts about Pluto and what you've learned about Pluto working with Pluto in your life. It really enriches everyone to have a rich comment section filled with your own wisdom. I love reading what you guys have to say and appreciate it.
You can find a transcript of today's talk on the website nightlightastrology.com, and while you are there, be sure to check out my readings and courses. We're in enrollment season right now, so you can hop on over to nightlightastrology.com. Click on the Courses page, in particular, the first-year course scroll down to learn more about it.
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Okay, so that being said, we're going to talk today about why people get stressed out with astrology, that you get astrological fatigue or burnout, or you sit and scratch your head, and you go. Is this really good for me? You know, like, Is this doing something positive for my life and I'll be honest, there are times, even though I'm a professional astrologer, where I've had to wonder that because of how stressed out I've let myself get with certain planets, and planetary transits, and there are some times where you just feel like, gosh, when you tune into astrology, it's just one healing transformational crisis after another, just one major energy vortex after another, you know, and it can, you can get a kind of like an ass, an astrological burnout or fatigue that sets in, where you just go, like, I don't want to hear anything about it, I just want to let life happen because this is doing nothing but increasing my level of anxiety.
A lot of the time, that happens because of the way that we talk about certain planets and the assumptions that we start to make about the nature or character of planets, what they're doing, maybe why they're going to do whatever they do, and so today, I want to start with Pluto, the farthest planet out planet that is notorious in modern astrology. There's so much that we put onto Pluto, and a lot of the time, in my experience, if you study ancient astrology, and you learn the ins and outs of the traditional model with dignities, excitations terms, and triplicity rulers, the thema mundi.
When you study the language of ancient astrology, in my opinion, it takes the load off the outer planets for having to carry as much as they do in modern astrology, where, in my opinion, so much got put into the outer planets, because so much of our tradition was missing, and now that we have a lot of that tradition restored through the reappearance of ancient texts, especially starting in the 1990s, we started getting a lot of our ancient texts back into English, and for the first time, we're really discovering that the traditional seven planets carry so there are so many diverse significations that the ancient planets carry, and the system and language of dignities carries and, gosh, it's such a rich language.
In my opinion, the best thing you can do, and one of the reasons I sort of, you know, stand on the soapbox about traditional astrology, is not because I think it's better than every other form of astrology but because if you don't go back to your roots at some point, regardless of what school you end up with, you're missing a lot, and then, in my opinion, that's where we get something like the outer planets carrying a lot more weight than they have to symbolically they have to sort of mean and do everything because we've forgotten the ways in which the traditional planets did things, and they did a lot they carried a lot long before Pluto as a planet was discovered or as a symbol was added to our craft.
We had many ways of understanding the significations of Pluto, the underworld, the subterranean, the experience of depth, death and rebirth, etc. That doesn't mean Pluto is invalid or, you know, doesn't have its own unique contribution either. But there are many different planets and placements in the sky in a chart that can signify many different things. So, in other words, Pluto doesn't have the market cornered on its significations, and that alone can take a lot of the weight off Pluto.
So before I say anything about Pluto itself, what we fear, what I think it does and doesn't do. The first thing I would say is just study ancient astrology because it takes a lot of the the weight, the psychic weight that we've placed on the outer planets, and it distributes it more evenly, and to me, that was a huge shift, and it really eased a lot of anxiety that I had and I didn't even realize that I had especially with the outer planets.
So, anyway, let's talk about Pluto. Now. Here's what I think we fear that Pluto will do. This is what I hear from my clients who know a little bit of astrology, and they come in, and they're like, oh my god, it's a Pluto transit, or you know what I read in the comments section what I hear on social media, what my students say over the years, and me myself what I have at times been afraid that Pluto would do?
Well, the first one is that you, I think we all tend to fear, and this is like, I would imagine that a lot of us have a pretty well-rounded understanding of Pluto. So you may not think this way, and kudos. Right, but a lot of us do; you would be surprised if you're listening to this going well; I have a very healthy understanding of Pluto, you know, good for you, and a lot of people don't.
They will think to themselves that Pluto's mission is to destroy things, and they'll think of Pluto generally as a like a wrecking ball and, you know, there's lots of different images that could come to mind. Volcanoes and natural disasters, the images and metaphors that we use to describe Pluto, are often very destructive. That's the point, and there's an element of truth to each of these fears about Pluto. But Pluto is so much more than a destroyer, or Pluto is so much more than just a bringer of destruction, and so we need to fill out our understanding, and we need to build trust in the positive, healing, benevolent, compassionate nature of all of the gods, all of the archetypes that they're working for us that they are working on behalf of a beautiful and divine cosmic arrangement.
You have to start there, and when you start there, you'll find that even if there are elements of Pluto transits that could be described as destructive, that's not what Pluto is here to do. Pluto is not here to destroy things. Similarly, we tend to fear that Pluto brings death, so destruction doesn't necessarily mean death. But there are similar fears.
We think to ourselves, well, Pluto is going to wreck things, destroy things, tear things down. It'll be generally characterized as a destructive experience, and there's a good chance that it brings some kind of death. Now that death is often, I think, you know, probably fewer people who fear that Pluto brings literal death. But certainly, it's got like a death card vibe from the Tarot, and people are afraid of that, oh, Pluto, it's the death card like that.
An element of truth, but again, if you start from the assumption that we live in a cosmos that is benevolent, compassionate, wise, intelligent, and moving events along for the good, maybe that good is not a good that is easy for us to understand in every moment. But if you have a kind of, I'll just call it a kind of cosmic faith, a trust, a sense of resiliency and hope about the nature of life itself of reality itself, then the first thing you think is not so much Pluto brings death, Pluto brings destruction. That's not how you'll tend to frame things, and a lot of what astrological fatigue or burnout boils down to is really about our own underlying way of seeing reality, which is something that astrology, over time, can heal and help us with.
But I think we need guidance, the planets themselves or guides, but we also need astrology content that is going to help us learn how to work with our own fears and existential anxieties. It is hard to live a life when we see death, injustice, cruelty, and suffering, to somehow trust that the universe is a good, safe place.
We have to think very deeply, and I think our thoughts have to become somewhat profound to trust that the universe is a good place, even if, on a certain level, it's not always safe, that it's a meaningful place, even if things are tentative and not always stable.
So it is not easy to get into a state of consciousness that is trusting of the nature of things or of reality, that there is a divine intelligence at work. I don't think that's easy at all, and I think that people who act like it is in a kind of shallow, superficial positivity generally will turn people off more than they will bring people toward some kind of cosmic trust because, for most of us, it's a real honest struggle, you know, and we have to work that that struggle throughout the course of a lifetime and the events of our lifetime and that's, it's like worth it. This is something that's forged in the fires of life, right?
So it's not like we just suddenly have some kind of inherent trust. But the point is that as we're working on building that trust, it is very easy with a planet like Pluto to think it destroys; it brings death.
Number three is that we tend to think, well, Pluto is going to bring intensity; oh my god, well, this ought to be intense. I mean, come on, that's, that has our nervous system, we're telling our nervous system on a certain level to be in, at worst, like fight or flight mode, at best in some kind of, like, you know, some kind of waiting room, you know, psychically for something that is definitely going to be intense.
Okay, so what does intensity mean to us, right, and a lot of the times that will come down again to our view of things, a view of things that is being worked out in the fires of experience itself, it is natural, as we are going along, and developing or evolving personally, spiritually, psychologically, to experience Pluto transits or to describe them as intense.
In my experience, over time, that verbiage has changed, and I don't describe Pluto as intense in the same way that I wouldn't describe; okay, let's put it this way. Let's say you have a therapist, and that therapist, when you meet with them, you know, it's you go to places that are real, that are authentic, that aren't easy, that are complicated, that require you to be present and to be honest.
You could, in the early stages of such a relationship, say that that person or that experience was intense. But in a way, that description is running parallel to where you're at, or where any of us are at, in our development with, with healing or with growth. You know, it's like as we grow, the things that we encounter that help us to grow, we will often describe as intense, but as we mature, it's very common that people do not describe Pluto transits as intense any longer; they're more likely to call them Plutonian.
That might sound kind of funny, but it's not that they aren't intense. It's that the way we describe them is often a reflection of our relationship to the archetype and where we're at in our development with that relationship. All archetypes are processes of development that happen in relation to us.
The soul is described by James Hillman and as a reflection of what ancients said, he described it this way, and it's always resonated with me that it's a mediating ground that the soul is a kind of a space within which a space held for the meeting of meaningful, you know, like meaningful encounters between self and other and from the kinds of relationships we have, and the kinds of encounters we have. Our soul is enriched, our soul evolves, et cetera. Well, you know, as we are relating to archetypes, we will describe them according to how we are at least initially perceiving the relationship, and as time goes along, if we keep relating, they'll probably start describing it differently.
I found that intensity is a somewhat early stage way of describing Pluto, and it's one of those words that I almost sometimes; when I catch myself using it, I almost want to put a quarter in the quarter jar, you know, because it's it pigeonholes and really limits what a Plutonian experience is like. Yeah, okay, fine. It can be described as intense, but it's so much more than intense. Such an important little nuance there.
Number four, Pluto will violate us with dark or evil events or themes. By violate, I just mean, you know? You know, like when you have to think about your medical options, and you think, Well, I'd like the least invasive option. That's a phrase that we all use, right? I like the least invasive option, please.
When we think of Pluto, I think one of the reasons we get anxious about Pluto and then sometimes we find ourselves getting burnt out with astrology because we're always thinking about planets like Pluto along these lines. We think to ourselves, Well, this planet will be the invasive option, and I won't have a choice; it will just sort of violate my will or desires or my choice.
There's kind of inevitable, violating way that we would characterize Pluto and you know, in the same way, that, say, a volcano erupting violates the life on the island, you know, it's like, oh, well, this is, you know, you have no choice. That's that kind of thing, and there's, of course, there are stories in the ancient world of Hades in, you know, in relation to dragging people into the underworld against their will.
So it's not something completely off base to describe Pluto as something that kind of erupts onto the scene and may show up in ways that are more invasive or that they feel violating somehow, and with it comes these heavier, darker, even evil may be events or themes. There's a kernel of truth to that.
But again, if we start with the basic level of what we assume about archetypes about the universe, about the gods, then you'll find that, you know, your way of framing these qualities changes, and that's really important; it's important to actively adopt or embrace these reframing things, because otherwise, the way we use language to describe the transits will often you know, kind of call into our experience, an aspect or dimension of the archetype. That may be much more anxiety-provoking. So there it is.
Number five. Pluto will traumatize us in order to teach us, so there's this kind of sick, almost like a masochistic way of describing Pluto, it's like, well, it's the ass whipping that I need right now, you know, like that. It's funny how, you know, the new age movement often depicts itself as very progressive and open-minded and stuff. I'm always surprised that considering that, you know, that sort of way of projecting itself, and I'm speaking now of a phenomenon projecting itself and not a person not coming from any one person or group, just the phenomenon of the new age is sort of like the new age. It's all about the sort of progressive, open-minded, embracing, and yet so much of New Age spirituality is about, like, you're getting your ass whooped because it's good for you, and there's no other way you could heal, but to get your ass whooped.
It's like, what you know, it sounds like someone sounds like an old man grabbing a belt. It's like, how does that help us? So, I don't think that the planets traumatize us in order to teach us. I don't think that Pluto does that. I don't think it's a particularly good way of thinking about the planets in general.
What Pluto actually does. So these are some of the ways in which I would now describe Pluto having gone through Pluto conjoined my moon opposite my sun, some other Pluto transits that have been really big in my lifetime Pluto, opposite Mars and my chart. So, please don't think that I'm trying to be absolute about these things. These are at this point, and I reserve the right to change my mind. You know, at this point, this is how I would describe what Pluto is actually doing from the standpoint of my astrological faith, which is not; again, I just want to issue the qualifier it is not perfect; it is a work in progress. But when I'm at my best, this is how I see Pluto rather than the fear based language.
Number one is that Pluto puts us in touch with unconscious material. Unconscious material is neither good nor bad; it is not evil. It is not shadow work. It is just unconscious, and that means that it's just something I guess I would just define it very simply as things that we're just not we're just not very aware of yet.
Now, when we come in contact with unconscious material through Pluto transits, we often will project onto the unconscious, that which is evil, or undesirable or, ugly or dark, or wicked or destructive, because unconscious material by its very nature threatens the status quo, oh, this is new. This is something that's here, and I haven't seen it.
You know, it's a little bit like, you know, my dog is lying on the floor behind me, and she's kind of she's a mastiff. We found out she's an English Mastiff. First, we thought she was a bull mastiff. She's an English Mastiff; she's a guardian breed. You know, it's like, when Ashley was, we were moving an end table that just like moving the furniture around a little bit at squeaked on the floor, and she was sleeping, and she sat up like, what is that? Sounds like, you know, whoa. But that's kind of how it is when we come in contact with the unconscious.
So there's like a guardian in us that immediately will sense or assume the worst and then sort of take it down by notches as we sort out what's actually going on. Okay. The table is being moved, okay, there's something coming up, and it's not here to hurt me. It's not here because I'm bad. It's not here because I'm dumb.
Most of the time, for many of us, as we go on in life and get used to the reality of the unconscious and coming into contact with it, we will evolve in terms of how we describe things that are coming up will, say, Oh, isn't that interesting? Rather than, oh my god, a demon, you know. So Pluto, putting us in touch with unconscious material is not the same as saying that Pluto is going to bring up this kind of destruction and death and intensity. It's like, no, actually, a lot of that is what we project onto Pluto.
Number two, Pluto removes purges and heals afflictions. No. My daughter had got stung by a hornet, and Ashley, I don't want to say it was Yarrow, or I don't remember what it was. But she made a poultice and put it on the wound because that kind of helps whatever with the venom and or whatever it is, and it takes the swelling down and so whatever. Ashley could tell you all about it. I know nothing. So, she put the poultice on, and as she put it on, you know, because it hurt to address the wound, my daughter screamed.
She looked at my wife in horror, like, my mommy's trying to hurt me, you know? And it was like, No, sweetie, I'm, I'm helping this will help. I know it hurts when you put it on, but it's good for you. This is not the same thing, by the way, as traumatizing us in order to teach us okay. This is just a simple fact, which is that removing a splinter sometimes hurts. It's like the medicine sometimes doesn't taste very good, but to heal afflictions, Pluto can be like a little bit of a bitter medicine, but it is medicinal. That's the main thing, and we tend to project onto the Plutonian process of removing toxins or purging ailments or afflictions or healing things.
We tend to project onto it words like intense, painful, dramatic, and so forth. Over time, my experience is that, you know, when you're 40 years old, it's easier to put a poultice on a sting and not freak out and think that something bad is happening than it is when you're five years old. But similarly, on a spiritual level, the more we get to know Pluto, the less we react in a way that labels or describes Pluto as this intense violating thing. It's a very healing planet.
Number three, Pluto gives life. It is fertile, rich, deep, and abundant. Filled with blessings. The word Pluto means riches. Hades and the underworld were also associated with a place of regeneration and treasure that lies buried deep within the treasure of the soul. You know, the real treasure in life is somehow to develop soulfulness. I believe that 100% because that's the only truth that keeps coming back when I get off course. It's the truth keeps, you know, knocking on my door and saying, Hey, butthead. You know, why don't you get back to your soul where the real goodies are, and I say, oh, yeah.
Yeah, it's the soul. It's not what I have or don't have or, what I prove or how good I am. It's that it's just this soulful feeling that they're that deep within me is this richness, this abundance, this fertile mysterious life-giving energy.
So, Pluto is a planet that way more than it brings death and destruction. It puts us in touch with that, which is life-giving fertile, rich, deep, abundant treasures within. Now, one of the reasons that we don't end up experiencing it like that, that we don't, we wouldn't necessarily describe it in that way, is because for most of us, to let go of things that are superficial to be put in touch with the life-giving power of the soul is scary at first.
Getting in touch with your soul is, in many ways, about facing the fear that your soul that you are not enough that your soul is not enough. So it's so much of getting in touch with the soul is about facing our fears of inadequacy, I think, for example of, The Empire Strikes Back in the Star Wars films, the second one, and there's this time, you know, there's this moment where Luke Skywalker is studying to become a Jedi Knight with Yoda, and Yoda brings into a cave, and he says, you know, that cave is filled with the Dark Side of the Force, it's strong in that place, and Luke's gonna go in, and he says, Don't bring your weapons with you.
Luke doesn't trust him, and so he brings his weapons, and of course, in the cave, he meets Darth Vader, takes out his lightsaber cuts off his head and then when the head falls under the ground, and Darth Vader's mask opens up, he sees his own face. This is like a timeless part of encountering the soul. That it's our own distrust of the soul of the mystery of the soul that leads us to experience it as an enemy. We have to move through that, and Pluto helps us move through that, and this is why Pluto is associated with the initiation of the soul. That rites of initiation of the soul.
There's something about that that, for us, is scary. But once you've done it, you recognize every new time that it's happening again because the initiation is, you know, just as cyclical and timeless as, you know, winter alternating with summer. So, we describe the encounter with the soul as scary, dark, as violating, as traumatizing to teach us something; we describe it that way.
Number four, Pluto helps us develop courage, depth, and, again, soulfulness. What are what is a deep person? What does it feel like to be around a deep person? Does it mean that they're stoic and serious? And, you know, is there some kind of macho that goes with it? I don't think so. The soulful people that I've met, how would I describe them? I would describe them as thoughtful in that they can recognize the suffering of others, have compassion, a sense of humor, a curiosity, and a tendency to be amazed and appreciate a part to appreciate things.
The ability to be self-effacing to be suspicious of people who are self-righteous or overly certain about things. That to be equally suspicious about our own tendency to be that way. Pluto is a planet, in my experience, that has helped me to be more courageous about exploring deep, soulful terrain, especially the things that I'm afraid of, but not in a way that's like, Okay, well, you have to go face the darkness otherwise you're nothing, or I'm going to make you do something.
No, I experienced Pluto as offering up an opportunity. Would you like to go deeper? Would you like to experience the soul at an even deeper level and I have felt Pluto as the encouragement of my soul. You can do it. You can do this. You're an eternal being. There's nothing at stake. Feels like there is there's not. Feels like there is; it really does; it's really hard not to think that there's everything at stake. Pluto seems to say nothing is at stake; go deeper, you can do it. That is very different than bringing intensity and death and destruction and trauma in order to teach us I don't experience Pluto that way.
Number five reminds us that there is nothing to fear but fear itself. Pluto transits over time have taught me that fear is a part of life. It's okay to be afraid. That is such a Plutonian gift, the permission to be afraid to ask for help, to admit that I'm afraid to not like being afraid, but to have to be afraid anyway because it's an experience that's part of life. Pluto has normalized for me elements of darkness, suffering, fear, uncertainty, and instability.
Pluto doesn't say these things aren't there; there are only good things. It says these things are there, and they can't really harm your soul because your soul is an immortal, beautiful being, and the more that you're willing to accept these aspects of reality that are darker, the more that living with them it just becomes easier.
Now, because Pluto has given me those kinds of experiences, because I have seen Pluto give that kind of experience to 1000s of people over the course of my career, and you guys have shared stories like that in the grabbed episodes we've done I can't see Pluto anymore is like Oh, it's this destroyer bringer of death and intensity, it's going to violate us with all these dark heavy themes gonna, it's gonna, you know, mess me up. But I just need it, you know, it is the most impatient parts of ourselves, the most burnt out, traumatized, wounded parts of ourselves that often describe Pluto that way.
I'm not saying that I don't get why, right? Of course, I understand why we describe Pluto this way. But Pluto is our friend. So, you know, I'd say if you can make a little space on a home altar for Pluto, designate something in your life for Pluto because the more we also develop relationships with the planets, the more we think about how we think about the planets, and the more that when the experiences of the planets come, that relating and turning of the archetype in our minds becomes a part of our relationship with how the events the planet indicates will unfold.
So anyway, I hope that this is useful for you guys on how to avoid astrological burnout. Don't be afraid of Pluto. Or at least if you are, don't worry because the kind of fear that Pluto helps us to get in touch with is ultimately very healing and gives us a kind of existential courage. We can live with these themes without making them more difficult than they need to be.
Well, anyway, I hope this was useful and that you get something good out of this series. I think we're going to go through the other planets, too. So, Part three will hopefully be Don't Be Afraid of Neptune. Why do people tend to get freaked out about Neptune? Delusions, intoxication, lack of groundedness, you know, like that kind of stuff. Alright, that's it for today. Hope you guys are having a good one. We'll see you again soon. Bye.