USA Natal Chart, its Retrograde Planets and Pluto Return

The Mercury Progressed Station of 2017, and the Transit of Pluto from 2017 to the end of 2023 are poised to make a profoundly significant impact on the future of the United States. These two planetary events accompany the Great American Eclipse, and together usher in a unified, monumental transformation in the lives of Americans.

Astrologers caution not to purchase high ticket items or sign important contracts during a Mercury Retrograde, and so it seems disconcerting that Mercury was Retrograde on July 4, 1776, the day of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. This important factor in the US chart suggests that more attention be focused on the significance of what the Retrograde means in describing the minds and attitudes of the American people. Mercury has rulership over the thinking and decision making processes, as it oversees the personal and more narrowed perspectives and objectives of daily life. It represents documents, contracts and local environmental circumstances, and oversees that conveniences function without disruption. Mercury Retrogrades are periods of time that alter the general status quo, and in the midst of the American Revolution, circumstances of over-taxation became the trigger to redirect the course of history in the west, and the American experiment in democracy was born.

In contrast to Mercury, Pluto, the supernumerary planet of mind was also in Retrograde motion on the day of the signing of the Declaration. Pluto defines the transcendental super-conscious mind as well as the collective undercurrents that establish the ideological and universal principles of an overall society.

Interestingly, these two indicators of mind, were the only planets Retrograde in Transit, and were in Opposition Aspect with each other when the Founders of the Republic decided to finalize their decision for independence from Great Britain 241 years ago.  The Sun being allowed a wide 17 degree orb of separation to any planet also participates in the chart’s Opposition Aspect. The Sun adds power and energy to the already dynamic polarization of the two planets that mirror the severe conflict of the time, as well as representing the future potentials for cooperation between their differing planetary meanings.

The Mercury and Pluto Opposition can be seen as the contrast between the overbearing plutonian British rule, and the younger developing mercurial American colonies. Their unique configuration is the symbolic and archetypal representation of the core of the American Revolution. They document the story of that past conflict in astrological terms, and are the indicators of ongoing better possibilities of what will inevitably play out in the governing process.


Mercury and Pluto have a significant role to play in the current and upcoming developments in the American political arena; Mercury because it is in the midst of a Progressed Station Direct, and Pluto because it is approaching its all-important 248 year cycle of Return to its natal position.

Mercury has been Retrograde three times in the 241 years of US history, and is now once again completing its Retrograde period with a Stationary Direct at 20 Aquarius 04. Progressions are identified in an ephemeris by taking each day after a birth or an inaugural event, to be equal to a year in the life of a person, event or group entity. Counting 241 days from America’s birth on July 4, 1776 corresponds to the year 2017 and its now present state of affairs represented by the controversial administration of President Donald Trump. The upheaval and confusion of today’s situation is yet another unique manifestation of the natal potentials of the Mercury/Pluto Opposition. These two planets, now in Progression and Transit are the prominent catalysts for what Americans and the world are witnessing in the day by day evolution of extraordinary events. Progressed and Transit Stations mark turning points whereby there is a mandatory need for a “critical regrasp of experience.” in order to further the development of the natal or event’s positive potentials. In prediction Stations are harbingers of crises. For Progressions, events related to these periods can span a year or so before and after the planet’s Stationary period.

Mercury moving forward promises to bring out the facts that will reveal the direction best to follow in the future. Pluto’s keyword is Probity in Mundane/political astrology. The probing into truth or falsehood of Russia’s involvement and influence in the US elections, and the act of twisting of facts using tactics of denial and outright lies, is all in the jurisdiction and meaning of the planets Mercury and Pluto.

The 2017 Station of Mercury is related to the unique circumstances of the 2016 US presidential elections whereby the first non-politician won the highest office in the land. The 2016 elections can be tied to another factor of unusual import, the Stationary period included the first woman in US history to be a candidate in the race for the White House. Mercury is Stationing at 21 Aquarius in the Sabian Symbol degree of A woman disappointed and disillusioned. Hillary Clinton most certainly was disappointed and disillusioned when losing in what was a brutal election contest. However, thanks to the importance of the Station, Clinton’s campaign will stand as a source of inspiration and aspiration for future generations of American women.

For insight into the deeper meaning of Mercury’s and Pluto’s parts in the play of history and present day, the Sabian Symbol degrees offer surprising detail. From Sabian Symbols in Astrology, by Marc Edmund Jones:

Mercury’s Sabian Symbol degree gives a profound clue to the historical and psychological mindset of the Founding Fathers, as well as giving light on the character of leaders who followed in their footsteps. 

Mercury, 24 Cancer 18:

CANCER 25  A dark shadow or mantle thrown suddenly over the right shoulder This is a symbol of the irrevocability of man’s obligation to the reality of which he is a part, with the emphasis on his capacities of leadership as a revelation of racial stewardship on the more personal or spiritual side. Self-expres­sion here is a release of his inner potentialities, and it becomes both an individual gratification and an expanding responsibility to all other individuals making up the social complex. The keyword is DESTINY. When positive, the degree is some dramatic manifestation of genius vital to the general welfare of man, and when negative, a tendency to unwarranted presumption if not outright megalomania.

Original degree: A leader of men erect and fearless suddenly finds thrown across his right shoulder an invisible mantle of power.

Through the last two centuries, the people of the United States have witnessed this symbol to manifest in quite literal fashion. Its leadership in the world has projected a superior example of democracy for other countries, and its desire to spread that message has resulted in a global domination; not in the nature of colonization, but through diplomacy and military might.

Pluto, 27 Capricorn 34: 

CAPRICORN 28 A large aviary This is a symbol of the ramifying differentiation of interest to be found in the many areas of normal life, and of man’s gift for bringing any one special line of effort to the immediate services of any other. His wide spread of aspiration is encompassed in the over-all realization by which he has organized himself, and his everyday problems have their solution in his breadth of resources. His administration of human potentialities on this social level is his self-fulfillment. The keyword is COMMUNITY. When positive, the degree is exceptional success in making all personal concerns a matter of common welfare, and when negative, loss of all character in sheer officiousness.

Pluto’s slow movement in the heavens identifies the base-note of the overall tension between the opposing forces that resulted in the American Revolution, and thereafter defines its character when in its final state as its own independent country including present day circumstances.


Transit Pluto is heading toward its 248 year cycle of return to its natal position, known as the Pluto Return.

Pluto too, plays a big part in the monumental changes coming for the citizens of the United States. Commencing on April 21, 2017, Pluto is on its way in a seven year pilgrimage toward its 248 year cycle Return, culminating with a Station Direct on October 11, 2023. The profound effects already felt match up with the preoccupation of the investigation into the possible collusion of Trump campaign officials with Russian operatives, and interference on their part in the 2016 US elections. The overall intensity of these issues establishes this as the circumstance that matches equally with the profound planetary Transit. This makes this issue one of the most disturbing scandals ever to occur in our democracy.

There will be periods of Stationary and Retrograde motion opposite both the natal Sun and natal Mercury to add great emphasis to an already penetrating reevaluation of its founding principles.

Pluto will be exact in its Return position at 27 Capricorn 34, three times in 2022 and once in 2023. Pluto’s keywords are OBSESSION in natal interpretation, TRANSCENDENCE when in High Focus, and PROBITY with mundane techniques. This is a mundane/political crises that demands that Pluto’s meaning and expression of Probity in the situation will be the facilitator of a higher and more fitting manifestation of what the Founding Fathers envisioned 241 years ago. The present and coming, perhaps mind-boggling turmoil, set in motion by the Progressed Mercury Station and Pluto Return, will challenge the entire country. Its governing agents, and the people who elect those representatives, will have the opportunity to transform the expected shortcomings to a new level of understanding and desired integrity.

For now, the Probity of Pluto reveals a conflict between political parties and between truth and lies. With faith in the process of discovery, Truth and Probity will prevail.

The important times of the Pluto Return to its natal position are listed at the bottom of the chart. Click on the chart for an enlarged view.

The United States “birth” times vary and the subject has been debated fiercely over the centuries. Because the hour of inauguration is uncertain, it is safer to focus on the Aspects that are not affected by exact planetary degrees and house placements. The Moon spanned the distance of 18 Aquarius 35 to 3 Pisces 03 throughout the July 4, 1776, from 12 midnight of July 3rd to midnight on the 4th. The time used in this post refers to that chosen by Marc Edmund Jones as shown in his Sabian Symbols in Astrology.

More about the nature and meaning of Pluto and the Pluto Return: Trump’s Twitter Accusations, Another Sign of Formidable Pluto Aspects



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