The first week of May is intense, as one of the most powerful planets switches gears as it commands the reigns of the sky. On Monday, May 1st at 10:09 a.m. Pacific Time, Pluto begins its retrograde journey, which will last until October 10th. As the modern ruler of zodiac sign Scorpio, Pluto is the Planet of Power, Sexuality, and Transformation. It is a planet of extremes that oversees everything that is massive, hidden, and dark—from the very best to the very worst.
Pluto goes retrograde every year, which is a normal occurrence. However, in 2023, Pluto’s influence will be magnified as other planetary forces activate it—first Jupiter from now until June 12th, and the Lunar Nodes of Destiny until early December. This means that, at times, Pluto will put us face-to-face with our shadow, asking us to integrate it.
As the planet of personal evolution and psychoanalysis, Pluto pushes us to become aware of the hidden aspects of ourselves as well as our deepest desires and fears. And only by accepting them can we make the unconscious conscious and take control of our lives from a place of true healing and acceptance. If you are ready to face your shadowy self, the ritual below is for you.
For this ritual, you will need two candles (one black and one white), a pen and paper, a lighter, and card number 15 of your Tarot deck, The Devil.
Head to a place where you feel safe and totally alone. Begin by lighting your black candle and taking a few deep breaths. Next, grab the Devil card and stare at it for a few minutes. As you notice the chains, the fire, and the forbidden fruit, think of one thing that you feel particularly ashamed of. It can be a secret, a fear, a painful experience, or even an unspoken desire.
Spend time building up your feeling around it and if it feels right, have a good cry as you write it down on your paper. Once you feel ready, kiss the paper goodbye while repeating this mantra: “You, deep secret and a part of me, I see you, accept you, resolve you, and integrate you. You no longer hold power over me.”
Next, burn the paper and bury the ashes as far away from your home as you can. Repeat this ritual any time you need a shadow work tune-up!