Whenever a new planet has been discovered we have seen a dramatic leap forward – not only in our understanding of our solar system, but in our soul growth here on earth. The discovery of a new planet ushers in the opportunity for us to evolve – both as individuals and as a whole, by embracing the energy the new planet symbolises.
Uranus was the first planet to be discovered with a telescope in 1781. Up until that point, all the other planets were visible with the naked eye. By the 18th Century science and technology had evolved to the point where we were able to build telescopes powerful enough to probe the far reaches of our solar system. At this point in history, Europe was about to be swept up in the French Revolution and Napoleonic wars. In England, this period would bring about the Industrial Revolution. Small wonder then that Uranus became the planet associated with change, revolution, scientific innovation and radical thinking!
This is in radical contrast to the discovery of Neptune which followed in 1846. Neptune is unique in that it was the first planet found by mathematical prediction – we can say the first real use of ‘theoretical physics’. This discovery a new appreciation of the arts with movements such as a Pre-Raphaelites and also a renewed interest in the occult and spiritualism as well as the writings of HG Wells – the father of science fiction! As finding Neptune involved letting go of what could be ‘seen’ with the naked eye, we can understand why Neptune has come to be associated with art, beauty, things that are hidden, UFO’s and mysticism to name but a few!
Pluto, now re-categorized as a dwarf planet, was discovered in 1930. Symbolised by the God of the Underworld, the discovery of Pluto coincided with the start of the atomic age – ‘plutonium’. Although Pluto has been down-graded from planet status just ask anyone who is going through a powerful Pluto transit in their charts and they will tell you this little planet packs an almighty punch!
The last decade has seen the discovery of several new planets – or Trans-Neptunian Objects as they are officially known, by a team led by Mike Brown of Caltech. The first was Orcus discovered on February 17, 2004 and named because Brown’s wife came from Orcas Island in the Pacific Northwest.
Although it can sometimes take astrologers several decades to really discover what impact a new planet with have on us, it is already becoming apparent that Orcus appears to be associated with healing our environment, interspecies contact, large sea mammals and healing our negative self-image. It is also worth mentioning that in mythology Orcus is the Lord of Wealth – so a well placed natal Orcus or Orcus transit may bring about increased prosperity!
Brown followed this with the discovery of Eris in January, 2005. Originally Brown and his team wanted to name this new planet Xena after Brown’s favourite television show. However, the International Astronomical Union whose job it is to assign names to newly discovered planets have ruled that any Trans-Neptunian objects must have names associated with the underworld. So, the new planet was named after Eris, goddess of strife and discord. We can say that the image of the strong warrior princess exemplified by Xena might have been a more positive one for society at this point as we have certainly experienced political and financial strife and discord on a global scale since Eris was discovered! However, it is always worth remembering that no planets influence is entirely negative and we have to say that Eris’s ability to ‘shake up’ the system may not be entirely a bad thing!
Of course, those who do not believe in astrology will argue that the planet has always been there – so why should all this make any difference? As an astrologer I believe that when we discover a new planet we open up to a new level of understanding and this usually begins on an individual level. So, on a personal level we may find ourselves growing in our understanding of who we are and how we impact on the world around us as we heal ourselves and then go out and bring this new understanding into all our relationships with others. This is real ‘magic’ in the truest sense of the word!
If you want to know more about how these new planets will affect you personally, then one of our gifted astrologers will be able to tell you just what these and other planets in your personal chart have in store for you. It really is a wonderful time to be alive!