Not everything that surrounds Pluto is sexy, glamorous, intriguing.
While sex, jealousy and transformation are some important facets of this planetary archetype, the association between Pluto and taboo is deep and complex, and it leads us straight into an underworld that hosts the least acceptable, least pleasant aspects of human experience.
The Plutonian kingdom is as exciting and seducing as it’s morbid and gruesome. The human urge to experience pleasure and Soul-level fulfillment through coitus coexists with the awareness of the impermanence of all worldly things, and of the mortality of our bodily vessels. In Pluto’s realm, sex and decay are not mutually exclusive; they are sides of the same coin. They are also more than “just” spritual experiences, as the Plutonian experience of both things involves the physical, factual encounter with flesh, fluids, organic processes – the roughest, most unrefined, primal elements of our physical dimension in all their coarse, innate realness. Pluto doesn’t spare us the graphic details, the grotesque features, the grim, hideous particulars. They are what sex, death and renewal are made of – especially the latter.
Nature offers us a prime example of this – and if you’re not prepared to get into the macabre nitty-gritty of the subject, you might want to look elsewhere.
Scavenger and decomposer animals don’t get quite enough credit for the part they play in mantaining a healthy, thriving ecosystem. The role of the scavenger is to feed on dead animal and plant material present in its habitat, thus keeping the decaying matter from spreading disease, while breaking down the dead biomass and recycling it as nutrients.
Believe it or not, decomposers, maggots in particular, are still being employed in the medical field, for the purpose of treating difficult wounds. An ancient practice actually originating from Maya Native Americans and Aboriginal groups in Australia, maggot debridement therapy (MDT), as it’s nowadays called, is thought of as an effective treatment for wounds that take too long to heal:
“Observations have indicated that maggots have the ability to debride wound beds, provide anti-microbial activity and also stimulate wound healing in diabetic patients. […] Maggots are able to debride diabetic wounds and stimulate wound healing. ” [source: Maggot Debridement Therapy in the Treatment of Complex Diabetic Wounds by Michelle L Marineau, PhD, APRN, Mark T Herrington, APRN, Karen M Swenor, APRN, and Lawrence J Eron, MD, FACP, FIDSA]
In cleansing us, and delivering us from the “dead biomass” that pesters our lives, Pluto acts very much like a cosmic scavenger. The planet’s alternance between direct and retrograde phases, albeit in a slow and tortuous fashion, orchestrates the sluggish pace of a bone-deep transformation that leads us from obsessive survival mode (retrograde station) to extrication and empowerment (direct station).
Around April 20, when the last retrograde station of Pluto occured, we were being challenged to clear away the decaying matter, represented by non-essential energy investments that were robbing us of our personal power – the dead, rotting flesh attached to our wounds. The toxic, parasitic dynamics, people or situations that outlived their purpose, and started freely feeding on our emotional, psychological, perhaps even material resources.
The retrogade station of Pluto helped us process the loss, welcoming the void it created, staring into it. We have watched those outdated, rotten structures break down and decompose. We have sensed their foul smell as they were rotting away.
By the time Pluto turns direct on September 29, the cycle of disintegration will meet its end, demanding us to turn the putrescent remains into nutrients for our heart, mind and Soul. To recycle our experiences and turn them into lessons. To test our insight in the outside world.
Most importantly, to retrieve our energy, and harness it into making significant changes in our life. At times, it’s necessary to go through a few deaths before we can fully thrive and prosper.