It’s not too early to start thinking about Neptune moving into Pisces, the sign if rules, for the first time in any of our lives. Neptune will move first into Pisces in April 2011 and will stay there until early August before retreating into Aquarius again. Neptune will move into Pisces for an extended stay (Neptune transits a sign for about 14 years) in February 2012. The last time Neptune was in Pisces was during the 1849-1862 period–the Gold Rush period, the pre-Civil War period and the Civil War itself. A pretty chaotic time in American history.
Interestingly, Pisces is the sign of slavery itself and, during the last time Neptune was in Pisces, the big issue was the expansion (Neptune) of slavery in the US. Ultimately, however, Neptune performed its undermining function and slavery was permanently legally abolished in the US.
Slavery is not the issue of the day today, of course. Neptune & Pisces are also associated with such things as medicine, including holistic medicine and drugs, diseases, the poor, alcohol, shipping and the seas, charity, religion and spirituality, films, fashion, movies, glamor, illusion, deception, fantasy, oil, art, shoes, compassion, water, psychic phenomena, the subconscious mind, institutions, prisons, chemicals, escape, withdrawal, meditation, and sleep.
Coincidentally or not, one of the most common predictions about the effects of global warming is a rise in sea levels. If there’s any placement that would encourage a rise in sea levels, it would be Neptune in Pisces. Neptune, the planet that melts, would be more than happy to melt glaciers and increase its dominion over the oceans by making them bigger. Indeed, Neptune with its gigantic holistic approach will be likely to increase global concern with the environment and the entangled effects we all have on it. This is good news for people who care about the environment; it may be bad news for those who fear a ‘one world’ approach to anything.
Compassion may become an explicit value, idealized and promoted in unlikely places. Again, good news for people who value compassion. It may be a bit more difficult for those who are not naturally compassionate and who distrust it as a weakening influence. Neither Neptune nor Pisces is the least bit afraid of weakness and vulnerability; in them they see spiritual strength and the power of surrender to prevail. That may be a bit hard to swallow for those who have built a life on appearing strong.
But what about Neptune in Pisces’s effects on the individual zodiac signs? Neptune in Pisces will theoretically be excruciatingly delicious at times for those born in water signs or who have planets or angles in water signs (although Neptune conjunct a planet in Pisces may be a bit more ambiguous in its effects). Earth signs and planets will also benefit from the Neptunian magic of exquisite sensation. Nothing feels better than a good Neptune transit. Other transits may be more practical, but for sheer transporting emotion, nothing beats Neptune.
Those in mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Pisces) or with planets therein may not find Neptune transits quite as thrilling, at least at first. Or it may be exponentially more thrilling, with a Neptune hangover and disillusionment to follow. Neptune’s like a drug, and under the influence of it, we sometimes fall in love with things that are not quite as wonderful as they seem at first. We fall in love with people, ideas, churches, gurus, quests, must-haves, dreams, fantasies, the unrealistic and the unobtainable.
Neptune’s purpose, at least one of them, is to lure us cleverly out of our comfort zones with the promise of easy, ideal riches–emotional, spiritual, or material. Once out of our comfort zones, Neptune abandons us and we are lost, forced to create a new path through uncharted territory.
That sounds pretty alarming and sometimes it is, but if Neptune didn’t lure us, we’d stay in metaphorical Kansas and never venture into the land of Oz. We learn a lot in Oz, even if it’s not what we expected, even if it’s only that reality is a lot better than we used to give it credit for. Neptune encourages gratitude, devotion, colorful adventures, hopeful dreams, fresh starts, and vivid memories. It allows us to do things we would never do in our right minds and opens up new worlds to us.
Neptune also encourages stuckness. Neptune is nature’s pause button, and it slows things down far more than Saturn. Neptune processes the whole, not the pieces, and the whole takes a long time to digest. During a difficult Neptune transit, you may feel like you are going nowhere at zero miles per hour, stuck in the same old fog and uncertainty for an anxiety-provoking stretch of seeming endlessness. Because Neptune’s not one to discriminate or distinguish but accepts all things, it’s hard to make out landmarks, so that one may feel overwhelmed by the inter-relatedness of issues in your life. On the good side, when Neptune solves a problem–it can solve a whole bunch of them at once, due to its holistic approach. Out of the fog, you arrive magically at a destination you only vaguely knew you were aiming for.
If you fight Neptune with enough skepticism, you may not fall victim to its wiles and deceptions. You won’t be tricked out of your money, your heart, your ideals, or your property. And you’ll miss the hallucinogenic trip through Oz. Is it better to lose a little and gain a whole new perspective or to keep yourself safe and avoid the quest? It’s up to you to decide.
Neptune will never be in a bad mood with you. It may affect you strongly and at some point it probably will, but it itself remains unaffected by human vagaries. It glides along, sprinkling its fairy dust and intoxicating anyone intrigued by its sparkling visions. But it will never chide you, nor blame you, nor yell at you. It simply is. Your reaction to it is your own choice.