I started writing about Pluto generations with the intention of keeping these summaries short and letting the pictures tell part of the story. These were meant to be ready references to spark off ideas. Then the subject ballooned out of control, and I had to stop for a bit. Now I’ve cut back and again and decided to publish these summaries and return to writing about the generations in greater detail later.
Just to reiterate. There are a couple of interesting periods to look for each generation: when they come of age in their 20s and when they come to power in their 50s.
1956/7/8 -1971 Pluto in Virgo
Coming of age during the late 70s, 80s, early 90s. “Generation X”.
“After you’re dead and buried and floating around whatever place we go to, what’s going to be your best memory of earth? What one moment for you defines what it’s like to be alive on this planet. What’s your takeaway? Fake yuppie experiences that you had to spend money on, like white water rafting or elephant rides in Thailand don’t count. I want to hear some small moment from your life that proves you’re really alive.”
― Douglas Coupland,
Critical, analytical, pharmaceutical, environmental. Virgo is the sign associated with the body and with the earth herself. Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace and Medecins sans Frontieres were all started while Pluto was in Virgo — but by older generations, of course.
Generation X: Tales For An Accelerated Culture, the North American novel that labelled this dazed & confused generation, was all about slacking. The McJob, a sort of do-for-now, money earning waste of time, is Virgo at its lowest. But in Europe this was the generation that finally tore down the Berlin Wall in 1989, and in China, it was Generation X that stood in front of the tanks in Tiananmen. That picture of one anonymous man standing in front of a huge tank is Pluto in Virgo at its most powerful. An average person doing something small and extraordinary.
One of the most obvious differences in the West — especially Britain and America — between this generation and all previous ones is the age at which women are having children. Pluto in Virgo women have chosen to become mothers much later. They have also pioneered the use of IVF.
In general, Pluto in Virgo seem interested in what goes in the body, whether that’s pure or impure, organic or chemical. It’s a generation of junkies and foodies. It’s no accident that one of Pluto in Virgo Barack Obama’s most important pieces of legislation is the Affordable Care Act. Pluto in Virgo Melinda Gates has used a ton of her husband’s money to rid the world of malaria and tackle AIDS. In fact, when this generation came of age, the AIDS scare was at its height (Pluto was in Scorpio) in the developed world, driving home the message that the Pluto in Leo’s party was well and truly over, but also that pleasure can kill you.
Food as medicine, yoga (meditation as exercise), eating disorders, angst.
It’s important to note that this generation not only had the Uranus-Pluto conjunction of the mid-60s, but also a Chiron and Lilith opposition to Pluto. This Chiron is now having a Return. This seems to have been a generation that has taken time to find itself. Coming after all the drama of Pluto in Leo, Pluto in Virgo had to reflect and critique. There’s an edgy dissatisfaction about Pluto in Virgo.
It looked, before the 2008 meltdown and Great Recession, as if this generation might actually make a difference to the environment when it got into power. In fact, the only country on the planet to enshrine the “Rights of Nature” in law is Ecuador, run by the fascinating Pluto in Virgo Rafael Correa since 2007. However, we’re still waiting for some real progress on climate change. Come on Virgos, pull your fingers out in Paris next month.
It’s been interesting watching Obama in power. He has been so hampered by the Republican opposition, yet he has achieved a lot. This is through careful Virgoan choices and attention to detail. He’s focused on the things he can achieve and followed through with force — Obamacare, the treaty with Iran, the stimulus.
Pluto in Virgo seems to understand that perfection is a process, change is continuous. This may be because it’s a mutable placement.
Power of serving. The power of inquiry.
1971 – 1983/4 Pluto in Libra
Coming of age during the 90s and noughts. Generation Y.
Libra is, of course, the sign of marriage, equality, peace and justice. In some ways, the Pluto in Libra generation is lucky. Many people in this generation got to mid-life without seeing any significant economic downturn. In China, this is the generation which has simply seen their country go from strength to strength. In the West, many have been able to establish themselves before house prices got out of hand, jobs disappeared etc.
However, Pluto in Capricorn — as it has been during this whole recession — is at a tough angle to Pluto in Libra. This is a nasty awakening. Things are not quite what they seemed.
In the West, Libra in Pluto are the first generation for whom divorce was normalised as children. People did it before, of course, but it was less common. As a result, making marriage work is important to this generation — for everyone, including same sex couples. There’s a desire to transform marriage, whether that’s through polyamory, a return to Sharia law or most desirably from where I stand, the marriage of true minds.
This seems to be an especially image conscious generation, acutely aware of the power of the surface of things. Celebrity culture, reality TV, throw away fashion.
“I’ll cry at the end of the day…not when I have fresh makeup on.” — Kim Kardashian
But on the other hand, these people with Pluto in the sign of peace have fought in many wars around the world — Iraq, Afghanistan, former Yugoslavia. In fact, during their early adulthood there seems to have been an explosion of violence — Rwanda, Congo, Sierra Leone, Kashmir — across the globe. The wars, of course, were started by previous generations but the people in the frontline were often Pluto in Libra.
The thirst for equality and justice burst out during the Arab Spring, with help especially from Pluto in Scorpio coming of age. One of the themes of the Arab Spring was the feeling that the governments of the day were just so unfair. Reasonable people had had enough and that was the tipping point. If you remember, the protests started when street vendor Mohammad Bouazizi in Tunisia set himself alight in despair at the crazy system which mean he was continually ripped off by “officials”.
Many Pluto in Libra people have Uranus in Libra or Scorpio, so there’s a lot of intensity here.
And finally they are coming into power. We’ve just had Justin Trudeau elected in Canada, and Alexis Tsipras in Greece. The leader of Podemos in Spain, Pablo Iglesias Turrión is also a member of this generation. The theme is surely equality. Making things nice and even and fair is a high ideal, but surely the world is desperate for this readjustment. It needs to happen soon though, because those Scorps are getting restless…
Power through idealism.
1983/4 – 1995 Pluto in Scorpio
Coming of age in the noughts and teens. “Millenials”.
Pluto comes home to its own sign and bam! what an impact this generation is already having. It’s thanks partly to the powerful configuration of the Uranus-Pluto square, which has stirred up Plutonians everywhere.
Occupy everything, the Arab Spring, Anonymous, ISIS.
Pluto in Scorpio have understood early that debt is a form of slavery.
It’s interesting how as the signs follow each other, we see generations clearly reacting against the previous one. For example, Pluto in Libra were image conscious, fashionistas (sweeping generalisation), famous for 15 minutes; Pluto in Scorpio: the Anonymous mask, the Pussy Riot balaclava, hooded ISIS, the niqab, even that Neptune in Pisces beard.
Of course it would be this way. Scorpio keeps secrets. Pluto is the god who wears a helmet of invisibility.
And if the Libran lot are fond of decorative tattoos, well the Scorpios like a bit of piercing and gender re-assignment. You have to remember, these are big generalisations. But in the same way that it’s obvious Pluto in Virgo is the first generation to completely shift the age of childbearing, it’s clear that Pluto in Scorpio are completely changing our ideas about sexual identity. Transgender: Pluto in Scorpio.
This Scorpio cutting and stitching of the body is quite disturbing to other generations — except maybe the Virgoan one.
I think people are a scared of this generation, and maybe they should be. When you see footage of Jihadi John, you ought to shudder.
They have a lot to be angry about. Capitalism is creaking and the people who may end up carrying the burden of debt are this generation of Pluto in Scorpio. The wars started by Pluto in Leo and Pluto in Cancer(!) are still rumbling on, and look like having wider repercussions. If the Virgoans and Librans can’t make peace happen fast — which is part of their role surely — then Pluto in Scorpio will be in trouble. This is a militant super-powered placement and they aren’t going to take this lying down.
Power through transformation (and not being afraid of dying).
1995 – 2008 Pluto in Sagittarius
Coming of age from 2015 -2030. “Digital Natives”
Sagittarius is the sign of publishing, religious institutions and the dissemination of knowledge. Pluto in Sagittarius revolutionised how we communicate — with a little help from Uranus and Neptune. Suddenly everyone is a publisher now. These people will know how to use it. Right now it’s selfies, Minecraft, Instagram, but in the not too distant future they’ll be making bigger, better things.
Note that many of the American and French revolutionaries had Pluto in Sag.
2008-2023 Pluto in Capricorn
Obviously it’s too soon to tell how this generation, born in the midst of the banking crisis and subsequent recession, responds to the world. But we can guess that it may be something to do with corporate power, working together to make change. These children may grow up to revolutionise how the world is governed. If you look back to the previous Pluto in Capricorn generation, you’ll find them storming the Bastille in 1789.