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The rejection of Pluto as a planet, although based on scientific categorisation, could be seen as a rejection of the collective shadow.
Pluto and Shadow Work
Pluto is the God of the underworld, keeper of the land of the dead, the place where darkness lies. It represents this place in all of us: where our secrets sit, our rejected pieces hide and the undeveloped aspects of our psyches stay safely under wraps. To do “shadow work” is to go into this personal underworld, to meet and dance with our very own inner Pluto, and look him in the eye.
It’s not fun, or pretty work, but it’s how real personal growth and transformation can come about: our potential as humans is limited if we’re not each prepared to go to these depths and face the fears that hold us back.
Pluto’s Generational Effect
As an outer (dwarf) planet Pluto has more of a generational effect than the faster moving personal planets, like Mercury, Venus or Mars. Its transits affect how whole global groups of people (such as those born during one decade, whilst Pluto inhabits one sign) will make their collective mark on the world and create a transformational paradigm shift. Which is not to say that its effects aren’t felt personally, it is just that they are likely to be more slow-burning and run deeper.
This week, Pluto moves retrograde.
When planets retrograde, the energy they exert (and in turn the personal energy we hold within, which is aligned with that particular planet) shifts. It shifts from an externalised, penetrating, creative force, to an internalised, analytic and destructive one.
Destruction isn’t bad.
Pluto, more than any other planetary body knows that destruction is a necessary pathway to transformation, which is what this retrograde is all about. But instead of reaching and striving for it, we are being invited to sit still, go within and renew from the darkest depths of our being.
Pluto and Numerology
How Pluto’s retrograde will affect you personally will depend on many factors, including what’s revealed in your astrological natal chart: the specific house of this transit and whether is aspects any significant natal degrees for you.
But your numerology also comes into play.
Just as the planets express universal archetypal forces, so do your core numbers, and these play particularly well together! Because the energy of Pluto resonates on such deep levels of the psyche, it’s effects can be felt most strongly when considering the Soul Urge Number. This is the number of your essence, describing your deepest desires and your deepest fears. It reveals the pieces that you normally keep hidden from the outside world … much like our favourite dwarf planet.
If you don’t yet know your own Soul Urge Number, click here for our Soul Urge Number Calculator.
Then read on, and discover what Pluto in retrograde means for you, according to Soul Urge number, and how you can best navigate its murky depths.
Your Soul Urge is to be the driving force in life.
You have a deep belief that what you feel, say and do has great value in the world (and you’re right).
But sometimes this inner knowing gets clouded or obstructed and you can become crippled with self doubt. Or perhaps you fear that you are not enough, that you are not capable of living up to the high expectations you have placed on yourself.
Your shadow may emerge angrily.
You may blame or try to dominate others, particularly those who are placed in positions of authority, whom you feel hold some kind of power over you.
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde, is to call in your power, to reclaim it from all the people and situations you have given it away to, because nobody has taken anything from you!
Your challenge is to take full responsibility, to let your vulnerabilities show, and restore your strength from this place of deep compassion for the self.
Your Soul Urge is to be needed, admired and loved by all.
You are motivated by relationships and have a deep need to connect with others.
But your overriding desire to keep the peace at all costs means that you frequently avoid disagreements or conflict of any kind. Or perhaps your craving for outside approval means you don’t give value to your own? Your beliefs, opinions, needs can quite easily go unvoiced and unheard.
Your shadow may emerge as neediness and codependency.
You may feel like you’re losing yourself and your sense of self-worth plummets, without others to hold you up.
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to create boundaries, to rebuild your strength from this inside out, and rekindle your personal power.
Your challenge is to say no. To do the work, to save your energy for loving yourself first, and to understand that this is the only way you can truly give.
Your Soul Urge is to cultivate and express your own personal magic.
You’re inspiring, witty and original and instinctively see the positive side to every situation.
But sometimes your pure expression gets lost, your truth gets confused and you say and do and create what you think people will like, and not what the world needs. Or perhaps you allow the beautiful chaos of your mind to take over, so you’re not the one in control?
Your shadow may emerge through obsession, addiction or lethargy.
You may try to forget your art by dumbing yourself down, silencing your truth. Or perhaps you get lazy, ensuring you avoid failure and rejection by not even risking beginning?
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to call find your voice, to go within and extract those gems of truth from your soul.
Your challenge is to own your voice. To be disciplined with yourself, to transform your expression to a skill. And to be vulnerable, to risk criticism and rejection because your art won’t please everyone, but that’s the whole point.
Your Soul Urge is to find beauty, order and stability in the chaos of life.
You are a creator of systems and love to make plans and organize the world around you.
But sometimes your need for procedure and rules means that you fear anything you can’t control, and reject the beautiful mess from which magic is born. Or perhaps you don’t take risks or let yourself be spontaneous and break from routine?
Your shadow may emerge as over-controlling tendencies and small-mindedness.
You may turn into a workaholic, shutting out anybody or anything which seems like it’s standing in your way.
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to widen your vision, allow another way to be and another way to do. To let somebody else take the lead.
Your challenge is to let yourself off the hook. You don’t have to do it all yourself. You don’t need to plan every inch of the future. Let a few cracks develop, you may even begin to enjoy yourself!
Your Soul Urge is to experience as much variety as you can.
You have an inquisitive mind and a thirst for adventure that is only satisfied when you’re on a quest of discovery.
But sometimes your yearning for escape can prevent you from committing to things that are good for you. Or perhaps your fear of missing out means that you’re so busy seeking the next thing, you find it impossible to be in the present moment?
Your shadow may emerge through avoidance of the issues you really need to face.
Instead of truth and honesty, you may find yourself running away from responsibility, especially where people and finances are concerned.
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to be still. To let your focus and attention run deep, and not wide for a change.
Your challenge is to connect with those around you, to be open and vulnerable and forge true and lasting connections with those who love, not temporary ones. The freedom you seek may, in fact, come from standing still, exactly where you are.
Your Soul Urge is to nurture and care for others.
You love people and have a true gift for creating the right conditions for others to flourish and reach their highest potentials. You have a deep need to provide for other people’s needs and an intuitive sense of what those needs are.
But sometimes your need to provide can turn into pettiness, criticism and over-controlling tendencies. Or perhaps you end up quietly resenting the people you serve, instead craving a freer method of expression?
Your shadow may emerge as perfectionism.
Of needing every little detail to be just right, leaving very little space for anybody else to simply be. Or you may lash out, blaming others for not helping enough, doing enough, giving enough?
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to loosen control, explore your creative side and surrender a little more to the undulating flow of life.
Your challenge is to delegate, share, and just let things run to ground if they need to! Move away from the family unit for an hour, a day, a weekend… nurture yourself for a change.
You need it.
Your Soul Urge is to discover meaning in the world around you.
You’re a natural seeker of knowledge, on an endless quest to find out the “hows” and “whys” of life.
But sometimes your need to uncover the truth means that you isolate yourself from others, quickly becoming reclusive. Before very long, this separation can lead to plummeting self-esteem, and a questioning of your very existence.
Your shadow may emerge as obsession.
Or your self-doubt may tip over into self-destructive tendencies.
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to find balance. To connect to each level of your being – the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual and offer each the same care and attention.
Your challenge is to open up to other people, to express yourself vulnerably, to develop trust in the people who love you. You may feel like you are alone in the world, but this is a state of your imagination! You are SO loved, so feel it!
Your Soul Urge is to find power, status and prosperity.
You are motivated by success and achievement, especially when it’s rewarded financially.
But sometimes your need to be achieving means that you forget anything else exists, and easily neglect yourself and the people around you. Or your gauge of what’s moral and correct gets a little warped, and personal gain takes precedence over what’s truly the best for all.
Your shadow may emerge as cold or workaholic tendencies.
You may forget that every piece of the puzzle matters, focusing only on the bigger ones, leaving people hurt and feeling let down around you. Or you may slip into the role of the victim, playing too small and giving away your power.
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to find your moral compass. To go within and re-align your actions with your soul and ensure you are working with integrity.
Your challenge is to find the balance between your power and your humility. To understand that when you share your success and the prosperity you gain, it will ultimately make you more, and not less.
Your Soul Urge is to make the world a better place for the collective.
You’re a humanitarian at heart, and yearn to leave a lasting legacy of wellness and love wherever you go.
But your overriding desire to share all that you know and have means that you’re too easily taken advantage of. Or perhaps your need to make life better for everyone you meet means you offer unsolicited advice, being too overbearing, and presumptuous?
Your shadow may emerge as despair when your idealism is unmet.
Or you may be overcome with fatigue from holding so much expectation and trying so hard to give.
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to recognize old karmic patterns, and stop them in their tracks. Notice where are you reliving the past, re-creating roles and relationships without ever breaking free.
Your challenge is to create fair exchange. To practice saying no, or asking for what you need in return. Because receiving from others is not only for your benefit – providing the opportunity for them to give, is also a gift.
Your Soul Urge is to trust your inner voice, and express this confidently into the world.
You are a sensitive and insightful soul, and it’s likely that you have psychic gifts and the ability to channel high-frequency information.
But sometimes you can scatter your powerful energy, and even tend towards self-destruction, without something external to focus on. Or perhaps you withdraw from the world altogether, tired out by situations and people who seem to take so much from you?
Your shadow may emerge as self-doubt, fear or even as phobias.
Or you may lash out at those around you, in an attempt to claim back some space for yourself?
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is self-care. And developing self-trust, intuition and a personal system of guidance that keeps you energized and psychically safe.
Your challenge is to create firm boundaries, so you can channel your healing energy as YOU wish. Particularly during this Pluto retrograde season, others will be drawn to you, by your healing presence, so you must ensure you are not the victim of energetic vampirisms. Create space between you and the neediest people – this is time to develop your gifts, not give them away.
Your Soul Urge is to catalyze the transformation of the world.
You are a visionary, and an architect of the future. Your utopian perspectives inspire others and provide the ambitious goals that others need to continually evolve.
But sometimes your power can scare you, and your ideas and visions seem unrealistic so you self-censor and shut yourself down. Or perhaps you focus so much on the practical, mundane parts of life that (like the 4) you start to fear what you can’t control, and reject the beautiful mess from which magic is born.
Your shadows may emerge as frustrations.
You know you are capable of so much, but somehow you can’t find the right outlet. Or your unclear communications with others may lead to misunderstandings, and hurt feelings.
Your focus over this Pluto retrograde is to trust yourself. To nurture your visionary side, and elevate your expectations of the future.
Your challenge is to believe it is possible. And to trust other people enough to share your visions, so you must also work on your skills of communication. Tread carefully and sensitively with the people who love you. They are your true allies in life.
You Have Plenty Of Time To Grow
Pluto moves retrograde on April 22nd in the sign of Capricorn (where is has been for 9 years, and will stay for another 6!). It will station direct on Sept 31st, so we have 5 long months of this deepening energy.
Take it slow.
Shadow work is tough, it works best when you move in, move out, move in, move out, walking the edge with grace and compassion for yourself.
Sending you blessings.
Are you feeling Pluto’s retrograde energy close?
Are you prepared to walk your own edge, towards ego death and transformation?
Share below, and let’s make this journey together.