Dane Rudhyar: On Pluto

Dane Rudhyar was not exactly a psychological astrologer, perhaps more universal or spiritually influenced and focused on the greater awareness of the individual. The author’s main focus is on the evolvement of human beings and he was credited with lifting astrology out of the dark times, away from fated interpretations to a more humanistic outlook. Most of Rudhyar’s work was spoken in a language concerned with seed growth and astrologers would often refer to him as “seed man.” On Pluto he says:  Archival Project Website:

It was asked at first whether Pluto was to be considered a real planet, largely because of the unusual eccentricity of its orbit. But we might answer this by another question: Is the seed really a part of the plant? Indeed it grows out of the plant; yet its function is not to be understood in terms of this particular plant which bears it and from which it will fall into the dark humus. It is in the plant, yet not of the plant. It is the messenger of the future vegetation. Its allegiance is to the “new life” that is to come. It belongs not to the particular plant, which, if perennial, begins to die the moment the seed reaches the very first stage of maturity, but to the species of which the particular plant is only one of billions of ephemeral manifestations. PLUTO – Sower of Celestial Seed

Seeds lie in a dormant condition awaiting the right conditions for growth and rule over the complex and deep processes happening underneath. People say we sow the seeds of our fate, but that this kind of evolution always happens in the darkness, underground, and unseen. So, it’s the reverse of the solar part of the personality (Sun) which shines full of light, and everything depends on the Sun for life. Whereas Pluto is the whole cycle taking us through birth, life and death.

Pluto is the seed, the Earth is our “soil” and the Sun is the great vivifier, the Source of Life and Light: God-in-the-Highest. But to this God-in-the-Highest, that is the Sun, answers the God-in-the-lowest, that is the seed.

Pluto represents the primordial feminine power, processes which are undertaken in the darkness of the unconscious. We are all familiar with the popular metaphor of the dark cocoon; it represents parts of the self that we do not like to see. In astrology, Pluto is the catalytic action for growth and development, ruling the transformative or magical processes; it possesses secret interior powers. It also releases power and takes root in the psyche and anyone attempting growth will often make greater strides when under the influence of this planet. This is because Pluto symbolizes the power to push through the hard earth into the sunlight where the soul can blossom.

Transformationally speaking, Pluto contains all needs for evolutionary development, and this is a process that always seems to be ruminating in the dark. Sometimes all we need to know when coping with Pluto, psychologically, is that somebody has come through the darkness of hell and come out the other side. Pluto brings us to our vicarious dark woods and is frequently interpreted as an external violation of the soul, an intrusion of a smoothly flowing life, whether from the acts of others, from the fates, or by our own choices. The soul brings us to a difficult place deep underground to enlarge us, to ask more of us than we planned on giving. And it is only by attending to our deepest wounds, and through to a spiritual enlargement, that we can emerge from the dark wood.

For in the seed rests the power of rebirth. In its concentrated, well-protected mass lies hidden the Mystery of mysteries: the mystery of immortality. Because of the seed, death is overcome. The species remains intact, alive, creative — because the seed carries in its shrine the magic pattern, the potent nucleus, which defies death and again and again brings birth anew…The seed must descend into the depths…This penetration of one’s depths, and this revelation of oneself to oneself in every remotest part of one’s being, is Pluto’s Great Work. Psychoanalysis is the product of such an urge, especially as it is able to face and interpret the “collective unconscious”. The Ancients spoke of it when they told the tale of the fisherman plunging into the deep to tear from it the “Pearl of Significance” — the pearl that is grown out of suffering; the iridescent sphere hidden in visceras, imprisoned in heavy shell.