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Of course we can, but depends on what you want your outtake to be:
If you explain something like neptune-conjunct sun in the 12:"your misterious self awararness grants you a a resolution for spiritual evolution....etc"
We are clearly able to describe a person, but we do it in a more realistic down to earth way- So while the test is interesting, depends on the expected results.
I've noticed by your post that perhaps that is why we can't get to an agreement, given that the nature of the outers, you grant to them significances we consider a bit unreal, for example:
We don't deal on unrealistic terms. Emotional depth for example, not sure what could imply:
- as in is the person supceptible to emotional needs? is able to understand its emotions? is all day thinking about its emotions?
We can analyze those things, but we do it as seperate objective things, not mash-up significations of feelings.
For example that mention of pluto is similar to what I said of the moon disconnected from the Asc or its ruler, a person that may or may not be able to connect to its emotions. If we would find the moon in mutual reception with the Asc ruler, could be considered what you can qualify as "emotional depth", but we would call it a person that is aligned and supceptible with its feelings.
The explanations for those kind of things will obviously be able to be explained: once you break it down into objective things.
Obviously if you expect for us to find an explanation to: "spiritual evolution", we clearly won't, since we don't believe in that.
In the same way that you cannot replace Scorpio with Aries and Capricorn or the 8th House with the 1st House and the 10th House, you cannot replace Pluto with Mars and Saturn. Those are different signatures. So, to me, the question is not if we need a Pluto or not. We need it, of course. The question is if the object we call Pluto is really matching the signature of Scorpio. So far it does seem that way.
And you are right, the energies of the outer planets are more subtle and therefore way more powerful than the inner planets. They are difficult to pin down. Pluto is way more powerful than Mars. You can't really see that power (as with Aries or Mars). You can only see the effects that manifest as a result of that power at work. That's what I mean with 'depth'. The inner planets can't give you that. As you say, you don't even have the vocabulary for that. That's what this exercise will show you. The outer planets have indeed something to add.
But it really depends on the chart you've got. If you have the Sun (Self) and Mercury (intellect) in Scorpio (like you) then you've already got very strong Scorpio qualities in your chart that influence every aspect of your life and the influence of Pluto won't be obvious. So, I understand your conclusion to some degree. For that same reason, our first example of Moon conjunct Pluto in the 3rd House in Libra wasn't such an ideal example either since the 4th House is in Scorpio.
edit: about the breaking down into objective things... you can actually just go into more abstractions in return. I think abstractions should also work with traditional methods, you just haven't practiced it. After all, both traditional and modern astrology just create a map of the territory, but they all have to deal with the same territory and also with the same 12 basic principles/energies, so I'd say it isn't really a matter of abstract vs. concrete. It's more a question of being able to handle abstractions (where the traditionalist may be lacking) vs. being ablate to handle objective things (where the modernist may be lacking)