The initiation of Chiron in Aries: Intergenerational healing
The Pluto-in-Libra generation are being initiated by Chiron in Aries, called to the front lines of intergenerational healing. We explore the significance of Chiron in Aries and how the planets can mend broken ties.
As the 2020s accelerate the divide between old and new, the relational healing the Pluto-in-Libra generation does will have a lasting impact upon the bonds that connect us going forward.
Approaching the threshold of mid-life, a liminal transition that tugs from both the past and the future, this generation are too old to be young and too young to be old. They are in the unique position of reimagining relationships, leadership, and what it is to be an elder as we give shape to a new world. The Great Conjunction between Jupiter and Saturn in Aquarius in December 2000 ushered in a new 200-year Air cycle. The Pluto-in-Libra generation now have an opportunity to leave the top-down hierarchies of the past Earth cycle, while looking to both the youth and elders for unification in leadership. The false notion that we need to individuate to survive will be replaced by strengthening individual autonomy for a unified interdependence. As recent events have shown, we are only as strong as our weakest link.
Elliptically orbiting the Sun, Chiron, the infamous Wounded Healer, roams the back streets and alleyways between Saturn and Uranus. Saturn, the well-defined security guard with steady rings, holds the boundary around our known world. It governs time, order and structural longevity. Uranus, on the other hand, destabilises that steady Saturnian status quo, revolutionising that which has become calcified in sameness, holding onto tradition for the sake of tradition alone.
Elliptical orbits have their own rules, their own path to carve, regardless of convention. Symbolised by a key, Barbara Hand Clow describes Chiron as a “rainbow bridge”, bringing new life into the old; unlocking the door between the inner and outer planets, and the journey of maturation that occurs between the Saturn Return and Uranus Opposition.
In mythology, Chiron is a Centaur — half human, half horse. Centaurs are not your friendly neighbourhood pony club. They are an unpredictable, rowdy bunch highlighting the periphery of civilisation by living just beyond it. A constant reminder of that which remains wild and untamed.
The child of Kronos and nymph Philyra, Chiron has a 900-year long story that originates with his abandonment at birth before being fostered by Apollo and Artemis, the archetypal Sun and Moon (God and Goddess). Raised through initiation rites, from an early age Chrion learnt music, divination, prophecy, art, medicine and archery, eventually becoming a respected teacher and healer through the passage of time.
Fatally wounded by one of his students, Chiron’s immortality prevented him from leaving his body, forcing him to apply his teachings to his own healing journey. Wherever Chiron lies in our chart can indicate where our deepest wound and healing resides. It can reflect where we are masters at offering advice to others, yet bereft to help ourselves. By transit, Chiron initiates. Through these rights of passage we continually graduate from student to master, sometimes with fanfare and ceremony, sometimes in the lonely depths of our own healing.
Holding status as both a comet and a minor planet, Chiron is bright and unusual. The duality that centaurs embody represents a merging of consciousness with practical application: walking the talk, living your truth, embodying the teachings. Chiron was revered not just for his knowledge but for the integration and embodiment that resulted in wisdom.
What came first, the chicken or the egg?
New frontiers are constantly being sought. Where advanced technology was once a toaster, it now allows us to set up camp on Mars and watch it via a live stream. In November 1977, when Chiron was discovered, it created a whole new classification in astronomy — The Centaurs. When new planets or celestial bodies are found, the emerging culture and consciousness on Earth are attributed with its discovery.
The detection of outer planets Uranus, Neptune and Pluto coincided with major historical changes. The French and American revolutions were underway when Uranus was discovered in 1781. Photography, one of the most commonly used mediums in modern times, was going through its own developments when Neptune was discovered in 1846. In 1930, while the Great Depression was creating political ideology, promising change with sinister and violent undertones, Pluto was discovered.
We can always ask the chicken or the egg question. “Does the discovery of a planet result in a consciousness shift, or does the consciousness shift result in the new planet being discovered?” What we know from history is that moments of great change manifest both internally and externally. It is both awareness and action that forges change.
The discovery of Chiron in 1977 offered us an external, physical representation of the changes occurring in our psyche collectively. Looking back on the 70s, we see a time of great transition in culture and consciousness. The Beatles broke up, Punk and Hip Hop emerged, and technological inventions of the time have since transformed every facet of daily life. Chiron has been linked to the emergence of the New Age movement, healing, crystals, consciousness raising, therapy and the popularisation of psychology and astrology. As the duality of the Centaur form suggests, Chiron’s emergence heralds a time of mind and body synthesis, a holistic approach to health and healing that requires a bold break with tradition.
Pluto-in-Libra generation: The me in we
Generations of people can be grouped in numerous ways. Astrologically, the outer planets move so slowly they are seen to influence social trends and, therefore, large numbers of people. Those born between 1971 and 1984 (see table below) are an entire generation of people born with Pluto in Libra. This generation have birthed Chiron into existence, paving the way for a new paradigm of healers, mentors, guides and teachers.
Hiding out at the periphery of our solar system, Pluto governs aspects of life that are mysterious and difficult to reach — the psyche, power dynamics, grief and obsession are all in Pluto’s domain. Mythologically, we know Pluto as Hades, the uncompromising Lord of the Underworld who takes what he wants, when he wants it. In Libra, Pluto’s work is done through the mirror of relationships, the loss and finding of oneself through the other.
Libra is an air sign, equinoctial, represented by the symbol of the scales. From the outside looking in, Libra is pleasant and unabrasive. Yet living in a constant state of flux, it carries an element of mental torment. Balance requires cooperation and precise assessment. The willingness to add what is needed, or subtract that which destabilises, requires clear decision-making and direct action. As a Venus ruled sign, Libra retreats from direct confrontation. It leans toward mediation and finding middle ground, encouraging participation where its opposite sign, Aries, asserts independent action without forethought.
The ingress of Pluto into Libra in 1971 reflected collective themes of equality and fairness as Lady Justice drew her sword. Gender inequality unfurled, divorce rates spiked and family dynamics subsequently morphed as more women entered the workforce. Childcare as we know it today was not yet established, leaving many children and adolescents unsupervised after school. Adopting Chiron’s key symbolism and unconventional streak, this generation are commonly known as Generation X, and Latch Key Kids. For some, this alone time was embedded as abandonment. For others, it was a formative time of independence, establishing a sense of self separate from the ideologies of parents and the family structure. This change in pattern was a break from the past and the beginning of an initiation into the independence of adulthood.
X refers to an unknown variable, a desire to not be defined. Similar to Chiron, Gen X are not so much outsiders as those who can’t be contained. They have been given free rein to explore that which is outside the bounds of convention. A unique generation with birth rates much lower than the generations either side, they were born concurrently with significant advancements in technology that didn’t boom until many of them came of age. In the western world, they are the last generation to have an established sense of self that was formed offline. They exist with one foot in both worlds, like Chiron, raised with a responsibility of bridging duality.
Chiron in Aries initiation: We don’t need another hero
In April 2018, Chiron returned to Aries for the first time in 50 years, creating an opposition by transit for the Pluto-in-Libra generation. Oppositions pose a challenge. Two sides of the same coin, the reflection of polarities can present as both complement and confrontation, with an end goal of integration and wholeness. Throughout this transit, this generation is being handed Chiron’s keys to unlock relational dynamics. What previously appeared to be a wall or limit (Saturn) can suddenly appear as a door into a new way of being (Uranus). Chiron in Aries, holding up a mirror, will highlight issues to do with interdependence, autonomy and the limits of compromise; addressing where one has potentially abandoned themselves, be it through forced socialisation or a lack of personal will.
Venturing into Plutonian terrain is an intense, often psychologically gruelling passage that forces us to purge that which is toxic, harmful or no longer of use. Chiron in Aries can trigger a healing crisis that brings up old wounds that leads us to seek healing through a teacher, a therapist or a journey to the seat of our grief.
The Aries-Libra axis is relational, it’s Me and We. Being the first sign of the Zodiac and aligned with Spring, Aries has a profound underlying survival instinct. Mars ruled, it is independent and self-assured, hot tempered and impatient for results. Relationships create the need for compromise, middle ground and working together, and requires each party to know where they stand. Through Aries-Libra, relational dynamics bonded in wounding and a fear of being alone, not in healing, can painfully disclose where one is disconnected from the Self.
Generations of the past revered long-term commitments, but the Pluto-in-Libra generation are aware that living with someone for 30 years without true eye contact does not a relationship make. Confronting the uncomfortable truths about one’s self through relationships is the collective work of this generation, building healthy bridges across the divide of self and other.
Building bridges for intergenerational healing
Each generation has an obligation to the next to not avoid their responsibilities. The Pluto-in-Libra generation are the bridge between Boomers and Millennials, analog and digital, the past and the future. As they heal their own relational dynamics, they subsequently reinforce intergenerational bonds.
Elders are the wisdom keepers. We need them to stand far enough back to allow the younger generations to make their own mistakes, but close enough to ensure they don’t burn the house down. The passing on of teachings is not just a discourse of information but a transmission that embodies the full scope of the journey from student to master, youth to elder. The Pluto-in-Libra generation is reimagining was it is to be an elder; how to hold that position with integrity, openness to change, and embodied wisdom. Raised with a lack of leadership, there will be an increased focus on respecting autonomy and strengthening bonds of interdependence.
So what exactly is the significance of Chiron in Aries? Well, as Chiron initiates the Pluto-in-Libra generation, the gift in the wound is revealed, awakening the potential of an entire generation. In myth, Chiron’s pain was relieved when he traded places with Prometheus, an act that served not only both of them, but all of humanity. Adopting the “all for one and one for all” motto born of the Aries-Libra axis, this transit can be bravely approached as a reunification of the head and heart, self as other, divine in the mortal, with the intergenerational healing benefiting not just those on the planet now, but our ancestors to come.
|Pluto in Libra||Chiron in Aries|
|October 1971 to April 1972||April 1968 to Oct 1968|
|July 1972 to November 1983||Jan 1969 to May 1976|
|May 1984 to August 1984||October 1976 to March 1977|
|April 2018 to September 2018|
|Feb 2019 to April 2027|