As I was saying in my last post, I think the Galactic Centre points us to the vast journey of matter-consciousness as it unfolds from the singularity of a black hole, and back to singularity again billions of years later. Within a singularity, matter-consciousness is in its primordial state, beyond all the categories such as space and time that we impose on reality in order to make sense of our experience. It is the function of our various mystical traditions to help us deconstruct these impositions and gain insight into our real nature, into ‘the mind of God’.
The Galactic Centre, therefore, involves us in both the wider evolutionary journey of consciousness, and the individual journey each of us has to bring a reflective awareness to our own particular share of that wider consciousness.
The outer planets, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, each in their own way address both this collective evolution and our individual paths of unfoldment. So transits to the G.C. by any of these planets will intensify their function, particularly the conjunction, which ends an old cycle and begins a new one.
Over the next year we will be experiencing a conjunction of Pluto to the Galactic Centre, at just under 27 Sagittarius. It may be some years before we understand what this transit is about, as we are talking about a deep shift. But these things often run in cycles (tip: if you’re doing a reading for someone, and they have say transiting Neptune opposite their Sun, look at what happened when it made a square all those years ago, and how the current transit may be helping to move on those old issues).
The last time Pluto conjoined the G.C. was at about 24 Sag in 1758-60. The big thing that has happened since then was the Industrial Revolution and with it our exploitation and destruction of the environment. Crucial to the Industrial Revolution was the steam engine, and it was during the 1760s that the first condensing steam engine was developed by Gainsborough and then Watt. The increased efficiency of the Watt engine finally led to the general acceptance and use of steam power in industry. Pluto empowered the Industrial Revolution.
Now, 246 years later, as Pluto agains conjoins the G.C., we are encountering the consequences of that Revolution and, for the first time, environmentalism entering mainstream politics. In the UK, the Tory leader David Cameron has in the last year brought the environment onto the political agenda as a serious voter issue for the first time. After some years of questionably warmer winters, this year it is undeniable. Swallows have begun wintering over in England for the first time. Bears in Spain are not hibernating for the first time. And so on. Like the 1758-60 Pluto transit, the timing is pretty close to the transit (unlike what one might have expected for such a deep shift.) I am aware there have been environmentalist politicians, such as Al Gore in the USA, for some years. But it has not been seen as a major political issue.
And it is an evolutionary shift. The Industrial Revolution was something that would inevitably have happened sooner or later as part of humanity’s technological evolution. And with it came humanity’s less than perfect attitude towards the rest of the planet, an exploitative attitude that I think had always been latent. Yes, early indigenous peoples seem to have had a more harmonious and ‘sacred’ attitude to other life forms. But, strangely enough, many large mammals died out in various parts of the world around the time mankind first arrived there.
So now another shift is being asked of us through Pluto’s current conjunction to the Galactic Centre, in which we will have to address our exploitative attitude to the environment as revealed by the last cycle. And just as the Industrial Revolution took a while to get under way, so too will the crucial entry of environmentalism into mainstream politics, empowered by undeniable evidence of climate change and increasingly scarce resources, take a while to make a real difference.
We also need to ask why Pluto and why Sagittarius? How does the symbolism relate to these events? Pluto in Sag can only describe certain aspects of the situation, because the other planets are also there as well! Concurrent with the development of the steam engine, for example, was a Saturn-Uranus conjunction square to Pluto, which is a much more satisfactory signature for technological development, with Pluto being the empowerment of industry that this development led to. We could also see Pluto as emphasising the creation of riches (Pluto) through the exploitation/rape (Pluto) of the environment (and people), the great expansion (Sag) this involved, and the sense of meaning (Sag) this material progress has given to our lives. And this raises another issue: the expansion (Sag) of riches (Pluto) – i.e. an endlessly growing economy – gives us collectively a sense of purpose and meaning (Sag). A great deal of collective soul-searching as to what constitutes the purpose of human existence will therefore be required if we are to address the problems created by our ‘progress’. The Galactic Centre is demanding of us a philosophical (Sag) death and rebirth (Pluto).
There is what is known as the ‘esoteric ruler’ of each sign – I think Alice Bailey channeled them – but they are quite interesting, and could be said to show the signs functioning at their best. In the case of Sagittarius, normally ruled by lofty Jupiter, the esoteric ruler is the Earth itself. It is characteristic of Sagittarians to be passionately involved with the visionary, idealistic, philosophic realms, but not to be so interested in more ordinary matters. They need to come down to earth and ground their vision. As one Native American elder said: “Don’t tell me about your visions unless they grow corn.”
So this esoteric ruler, the earth, points to one of the major lessons for Sagittarius. And I think that this current conjunction of Pluto to the Galactic Centre in Sagittarius is raising this issue, and raising it in a Plutonic way: we need to acknowledge the earth beneath our feet or die, it is a survival issue. Though we have become very good at manipulating the earth element, it has become in the service of a mad dream of endlessly expanding prosperity. When I say ‘mad’ I mean it literally. We are no longer involved with the earth in the sense of a simple recognition and appreciation. We need to collectively ground this Sagittarian quest, and learn to find meaning again in the simple provision of our material needs through a give-and-take, appreciative attitude to the planet. It is a new synthesis that is required, because we cannot unlearn that new technological power that the last conjunction of Pluto to the Galactic Centre gave us, and which is also part of our collective evolution.