Striking a Balance: the Astrology of Positive Thinking

With four planets in Libra in my natal chart, including Uranus and Mercury in my 9th house of philosophy, I often have a 'knee-jerk' reaction to any statement that appears to be an opinion stated as an absolute. Mars leads my Libra planetary pack so perhaps it's no wonder that I often defend anything by starting my argument with "Yes, but on the other hand…"


Bright sided book cover

To my surprise and enjoyment, I think she argued intelligently and fairly, with the overall message of grounded optimism, not pessimism and also not empty-headed positive thinking. But this isn't exactly meant to be just a book review, so let's get on with the astrology.

As soon as I saw Barbara's interview on The Daily Show, all kinds of astrological possibilities entered my head. This book's appearance seems to be synchronistic with the ushering in of the Pluto in Capricorn period, particularly coming from the Pluto in Sagittarius period. Pluto has been in Capricorn for a good while now, but it is still in the beginning stages of entry and the effects are not yet fully shaken out. Barbara's subtitle about "undermining America," though I think a tad dramatic (yay, marketing), got me to thinking about the United States' chart and the recognition of Sagittarius, the sign of optimism if there ever was one, is the United States' Ascendant. And then, of course, I wondered about Barbara's own chart.

How Pluto Works in the Collective

The outer planets, usually referring to Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto, are sometimes called 'generational' because they are in the same sign for such a long period of time that they can affect an entire generation collectively. I think the mistake in that perspective is in thinking that the generational effect is their only relevance. These planets matter greatly in a personal natal chart, but they also function on a larger scale. Pluto especially, staying in a sign for at least 10 years but sometimes more than 20, can reflect an entire generation.

Pluto affects the collective in two ways. First, events that take place during any given period, such as when Pluto was in Sagittarius from 1995 to 2008, will reflect what we all are learning about that sign, both it's blind spots and negative qualities as well as its possibilities and positive qualities. Second, the generation that is born during that time not only lives through it but carries the energy of it throughout their life, which then ripens when those children become adults, entering the work force, establishing and changing laws, and shaping culture.

Pluto in Sagittarius: Bigger is Better

In a nutshell, Sagittarius rules things like expanding one's reach through travel, crossing boundaries of race and country for multi-cultural experiences, adventure, the quest for knowledge and discovery through (sometimes naive) experimentation, faith and optimism. Here are a handful of things that happened during Pluto's journey through Sagittarius:

  1. The Euro began circulating, making travel through Europe easier through standardized currency

  2. Dolly the Sheep was cloned

  3. Construction started on the International Space Station

  4. Internet use ballooned, as well as development of faster ways to access it and it became easier to purchase things from other countries through e-commerce

  5. GPS (Global Positioning System) became fully operational