Pluto—the planet that’s no longer a planet—is scheduled to turn retrograde on Friday April 12, 2013 at 3:35 pm Eastern Time within 11 degrees of Capricorn. It will remain in this position until September 20, 2013. When it comes to retrograde, most of us think about the havoc caused by Mercury. With Pluto however, we are in store for a different kind of energy as it moves backwards.

The Plutonian Influence

Although the International Astronomical Union no longer considers Pluto a planet, its mythology and astrological importance is in no way affected. Pluto is known as the God of the Underworld according to ancient Roman mythology. Originally he was associated with metals, gems and riches that came from deep beneath the surface of the earth. In fact the name Pluto is derived from the Greek word for wealth. Pluto was also one of Saturn’s sons, escaping his father’s wrath along with Neptune and Jupiter. While Neptune went on to rule the sea, Jupiter ruled the sky, leaving the underworld for Pluto.

With Pluto however, we are in store for a different kind of energy as it moves backwards.

So how does the mythology relate to the astrology? Pluto rules those aspects of life that are deep, dark, mysterious and even deadly. It governs the world of shadows and the shadow self. Yet, at the same time is can help you uncover those hidden jewels deep within. This astrological body symbolizes change, regeneration and transformation.

During Pluto retrograde, you might expect the influence of the dwarf planet to weaken, wane or behave in a contrary fashion. After all, we’re so used to Mercury retrograde and its opposite affect. Yet, ironically the Plutonian influence becomes more intense while in retrograde. Expect even deeper encounters with things that lie beneath the surface.

Digging In and Getting Your Goat

Along with the themes of Pluto, the flavor of Capricorn will be added to the mix. The determined goat will be involved as you dig in and look to discover hidden meanings within situations. Capricorn often deals with power and structure, so it could be a question of figuring our who’s really in charge in your world. Is it you? Or have you given your power away to others?

External power struggles may also be highlighted during this time. That determined goat might be after you in the form of a difficult boss, a demanding spouse or a perfectionist inner critic. They all seem out to get your goat. During the retrograde period you will have an opportunity to understand and get to the bottom of this behavior. It could prove to be very enlightening. Perhaps you find that their controlling behavior results from insecurity or you uncover some other insightful gems.

Change and Transformation

Pluto also suggests change and transformation. During a retrograde the yearning to transform is heightened all the more. Couple this with the spring season in the Northern Hemisphere and the energy of rebirth is about to run rampant and continue well into late summer.

What does this mean for you? This is an excellent time to regenerate yourself or any facet of your life. Looking to improve your health? This is the perfect opportunity to begin a detox ritual or start an exercise program. If you’ve had difficulties diagnosing a health problem, this transit will help you get to the bottom of things. Emotional and psychological breakthroughs are also favored at this time.

You can also look forward to releasing old behavioral patterns and modes of thinking. Do a little spiritual house cleaning. Get rid of those old worn out negative attitudes and limiting fears. Release any old grudges or inner wounds. Forgive, forget and free yourself! Pluto’s energy will help you move these things out so you can move on.

Embrace this retrograde period and let it work for you so you emerge transformed and ready to begin anew!