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Getting On With It: Mercury Conjunct Pluto

Mount Whitney, Sierra Nevadas, California; photo taken by Wikimedia Commons user
Geographer, March 2003.

On Dec. 19, the planet Mercury enters the shadow period of its retrograde cycle, and it also happens to align with the planet Pluto—one of three conjunctions it will make between now and the beginning of next year. As you probably know, Pluto and Uranus have been in a tense conflict since 2012 and slightly before. This has been reflected on the world stage rather clearly. The underworld has revealed its face to us all, collectively and personally. “Progressive” change has inundated the social, cultural and political infrastructures the world over. Perhaps you’ve changed a lot yourself, too. Perhaps you’ve endured your own personal reformation.

As Mercury comes into contact with Pluto, it also comes into contact with Uranus—thus igniting some more tension within you and within the collective psyche. Since both Pluto and Uranus are outer planets, they pull us out of our own personal bubble and help us focus on the “bigger picture”—our contribution to the greater whole that we are a part of. But Pluto in particular, so often draws us to the realization of our impermanence. We have a limited time here. While I don’t think we (as in our soul) only live a single life, I know that my ego (my illusory and fleeting identity) will not exist forever. Its time is short. You, as a separate and individual being, will not last forever.

So, why have you come here? Why do you choose to exist? I often feel like I forget myself, sucked into the numbing comfort of ignorance so many find themselves enmeshed. But some part of me can’t remain there for too long. Some part of me knows that it better get on with it. For whatever reason (maybe I’m an old soul), I have to always pull myself out of those traps and get back in alignment with my purpose, whatever that is. Pluto so often does this, especially during the lengthy period of its transits to planets or points in our horoscope. It points us (sometimes painfully) to what we need to get on with. It slowly churns in the background of consciousness, beckoning us, stalking us, until we notice its calling. Pluto, God of the underworld, pulls us under. It beleaguers us with a seemingly “dark” presence that we really shouldn’t ignore.

But what is that feeling? What is that “darkness”? In my opinion, it’s merely the part of our self, our psyche, we have yet to uncover and manifest. Those demons are merely the uncharted, lost, subjugated, and ignored aspects of our potential—what we have yet to face and deal with. And what better way to get our attention than to appear as something so frightening. The darkest chasms of your mind are those places holding your deepest fears, wounds, and regrets. In Buddhism, it’s said that our karma is primarily what we have yet to do but long to do. The soul is brought back to earth (time and time again) by its unfulfilled desires. When we die, the Tibetan Buddhist believes that the soul is eventually tormented by that karma (manifested in the guise of “demons”) until it jumps into another incarnation—back into the cycle of life and death, and so often suffering.

As Mercury conjoins Pluto three times (Dec. 19, Jan. 22, and Jan. 30/31), it gives you some time to contemplate what you’ve come here to do. Perhaps this is simply a subtle recognition or wake-up call. Perhaps (if it’s impacting something more personal in your chart), it’s a much bigger, more encompassing realization. However it manifests, you’re likely to feel that pull inward, as Capricorn so often does. But then, we can’t forget the presence of Uranus, drawing us towards freedom and individuation. So, the rest of the year and the first month of 2016 may have you focused on some “serious” matters—matters pertaining to your purpose, matters pertaining to the calling of your soul and the freedom required to bring that calling forward and into the world.

Consider what distractions you may need to overcome to get back in alignment with your truth and with your integrity. Consider what you need to prioritize and what is simply in your way. Trust that feeling to turn inward now; it correlates perfectly with the Sun’s natural position in the sky and the emergence of the winter solstice here in the northern hemisphere. This is a time, naturally, of deeper reflection, introspection, and contemplation. And Uranus calls us to remain true to ourselves and our unique evolutionary pathway. It cares not what everyone thinks, but merely that we are true to our purpose and destiny. Perhaps you’ve forgotten, but you have one because you exist. And to exist means that you have a desire to do so. And that desire led you back here. So, maybe, just maybe, you might as well get on with it.