This is an astrological black queen, and when you are dealt it, you have a lot in your hand.
Each of these bodies signifies an explicit process: Pluto’s transformation and Chiron’s healing encapsulate several phases, so the opposition carries myriad variations. Pluto’s process starts with the pressure to release, to let die, and when the native resists, it destroys. Then comes the process of regeneration. Chiron’s process starts with an unwarranted wound, a series of realizations and attempts to heal, acceptance of the inability to heal it completely, wisdom/gratitude in ideal cases, and the desire to help others heal. This opposition puts these bodies in a polarity. These facts are the basis of how it works.
To start to understand Pluto, one has to remove the blinders of all kinds of social norms. Regeneration refers to all kinds of death and rebirth, most of which are repressed by most human societies. This is why Pluto is oft painted with all kinds of “dark” descriptors. They refer to our repressions, not Pluto. Power and a sense of necessity underlie Pluto’s ability to regenerate. Power is the engine of Pluto, and it can be used to do mind-blowing things that one can consider dark or light. Since Pluto transcends social delicacies, it acts outside them. This is why most people regard Pluto with fear; they are really afraid of its disregard for social norms, rules that people live by but don’t often think about.
So Pluto’s energy is based on some kind of ultimate power, the power to transform, and it tends to manifest in repressed areas, hence death, perversion, sexuality, destruction, the exercise of ruthless power, and the stripping away of falseness. On the regeneration side, Pluto is concerned with healing and rebuilding. All this is characterized by Pluto’s intensity and intractability.
Chiron represents an “innocent bystander” wound that one suffers just because one was in the wrong place at the wrong time. The hardest wounds to bear are probably the unwarranted ones. And this wound is forever; one can lessen the pain somewhat, but the scar is always there and hurts periodically. One cannot heal it in the sense of eradicating it. So nested within Chiron’s significance is a grieving process that culminates in acceptance at some level, and possibly grace. Key to the symbolism, though, is channeling one’s learnings and wisdom socially, to help others. Wounds can be powerful teachers. Chiron’s energy emerges in all kinds of situations: physical wounds, emotional wounds, and psychic/spiritual wounds.
Since Pluto opposition Chiron is a polarity, it can manifest in a full range of human situations that are related to each body’s extremes.
Oppositions are usually experienced as dilemmas because they pull you in opposite directions, and pleasing one side displeases the other. They feel like no-win situations. When you crack the code, though, you release tremendous energy. There are three main ways to try to resolve oppositions:
- Repress one side of the opposition, completely identifying with the other. In this case, the native will attract other people into his/her life to act out the repressed side.
- Seesaw between them, trying to live one side, then the other and finally discovering that neither side works.
- Acting on neither pole but creating a synthesis, a kind of third way.
The houses in which each body sits will reveal the parts of life in which the opposition will manifest, and of course, the houses are a polarity as well. In many cases, though, other bodies bisect the opposition. In the case of the T-square, the squaring body often serves as an outlet for the opposition’s energy, so it may manifest in any combination of the three houses involved, often in all three, although in different ways. Other common patterns are trine–sextile, octile–trioctile, and quincunx–semisextile. For more on these, see Aspects.
Pluto–Chiron oppositions can teach extensive wisdom because they confront people with unacceptable situations. The opposition signifies absolute power to regenerate opposing unwarranted wounding and healing. Notice the difficulty in each planet’s approach: Pluto is about penetrating, discovering, and fixing, but it is definitely not about being vulnerable. And the key to Chiron’s energy is to learn to be vulnerable: without vulnerability, one cannot lance the pain, let it flow out.
Given Chiron’s “innocent” aspect, the opposition will often begin manifesting in childhood, and Pluto will often channel through adults (powerful authorities).
These oppositions indicate some of the most painful situations that humans can experience. When I see this opposition in a chart, I usually find that it represents a cornerstone of my client’s life drama, especially when aspected by other bodies. When you are interpreting the chart, be prepared for the release of intense pain if your client is in a place to face it. Your interpretation will touch the client deeply. I always consider where the client is in her/his life before interpreting the opposition. It will not help to overwhelm.
In counseling, I find it essential to be aware of my capabilities because my client may need more support than I can give in dealing with her/his feelings. The nature of this opposition is that it is out of bounds and uncontrolled, so people need support even when they say they are okay. In most cases, they have many defenses on which they have relied for years, so it’s a matter of letting go of those. The healing process often takes years and unfolds in many phases, off and on.
Pluto Chiron oppositions represent journeys that can be beautiful in themselves especially when understood at the spiritual level. In the most fortunate cases, their bearers create the most beautiful transformations that humans can experience when they find the strength to live up to each body’s challenges.
Pluto Chiron oppositions always represent high stakes propositions.