Only eight hours before the Great American Eclipse on August 21st, Ceres and Pluto complete their opposition from 17° Cancer to 17° Capricorn. Ceres and Pluto are our solar system’s two most prominent dwarf planets: Ceres is the largest body in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, while Pluto is the first-discovered and largest-known Kuiper Belt Object orbiting beyond Neptune. In Astrology, they are energetic opposites and partners (Ceres rules over all things that grow above the ground, Pluto rules all things underground), and they express this polarity by their roles in the myth of Persephone and the story of the seasons… in the fall, Persephone leaves her mother Ceres(Demeter) to be united with Pluto(Hades) in the Underworld during the winter months. In the spring, she leaves the Underworld and is reunited with Ceres during the summer.
On August 21st, just after 3:00am on the west coast, Ceres transits exact opposite Pluto as she rises above the Cancer ascendant. Just before, asteroid Persephone crossed over the mean lunar north node in Leo, and shortly after, the Moon transits past the north node and Persephone, only 4.5 degrees- less than eight hours- to the Leo New Moon solar eclipse.
During the month of August, Hekate, Sekhmet, and Venus in Cancer have formed a stellium around Ceres, combining their goddess powers as they transit together opposite Pluto: Venus, the pure essence of receptive Yin; Sekhmet, the destroyer and creator of all possibilities; Hekate, the all-seeing oracle; and Ceres, the archetype of Mother, united on the front lines of Pluto’s destruction, holding space for us to acknowledge his important role in our lives while keeping him in his place. Pluto is not really a violator. He is a force of nature, and when his power is feared and avoided instead of honored and respected, feelings of being violated may result.
Hekate joins Ceres on the Cancer ascendant as the opposition becomes exact. She is the oracle who guided Ceres after Persephone’s abduction, assisting her as she approached the Underworld, learned about her daughter’s situation, and developed her original reactionary resistance into acceptance: The wisdom of knowing that wholeness(Ceres) and loss(Pluto) are two halves of one cycle. Hekate’s presence conjunct Ceres as they confront Pluto together shifts our awareness to the knowledge of Ceres (in Cancer, the sign of the Mother) and informs the opposition with the inter-generational wisdom of maiden, mother, and crone.
Throughout 2017, Persephone has benefited from the energy of her companion asteroid Prometheus, whose divine masculine Yang balanced and protected Persephone’s Yin from any potential weakness. Although they are now separating, they have continued to be influential in the Lion’s Gate as the Sun and Mars transit through Leo.
Asteroid Persephone has now passed the Lammas point in mid-Leo and is gaining the education of harvest in preparation to return to the Underworld, conjunct the north node she is powerfully receiving the wisdom coming from the Cancer stellium. This continues a series of regal power plays from Persephone. Her previous aspects to Pluto (opposition and quincunx) were both also part of configurations that tilted the power dynamic away from Pluto, proving the relevance of this asteroid for those of us who are learning to take control of our experiences of intrusion, elimination, and darkness. It can be a difficult task for survivors to awaken to the full extent of the power we have over our own experience of trauma. In all the years I have followed Persephone, she has been nothing short of a champion for survivors, providing presence and meditations that empower us to be in control of our traumas, our triggers, our shadows, and our non-linear journeys of healing. Now, Persephone’s conjunction to the north node and proximity to the solar eclipse during Ceres opposite Pluto is a heroic stance of empowerment and ownership of the present moment, with a holistic awareness and inclusion of all facets of this journey, for better or for worse.
Looking Back To The Previous Pluto-Ceres Conjunction
In February of 2015, Ceres transited conjunct Pluto in Capricorn. Hekate was also conjunct Ceres during this conjunction, and in fact during the past several years Ceres and Hekate have not been farther than approximately 25 degrees apart- a stunning astronomical fact that reflects the astrological significance of their mythic connection.
In the first few months of 2015, NASA Dawn Mission was approaching Ceres and NASA New Horizons was approaching Pluto, both sending back black and white images of these previously unexplored and unknown dwarf planets, tantalizing our imaginations of what was still to come… I was six months pregnant with my son at that time- what I knew of as “my life” was crumbling away, while the seed of my new life was sprouting in the underground realm of Pluto. Like the grainy images being sent back from space, Pluto conjunct Ceres paved the way for what was yet to be, like the Death card in Tarot, the holy eliminator removing all obstacles in the way of growth.
Featured image credit: NASA Dawn Mission facebook page
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