Navigating a Neptune Transit
In May 2011 when Neptune entered Pisces, I had no idea that my life would soon be changed forever. At that stage, I also didn't know that I was born with a Pluto-Uranus conjunction and that the first of seven Pluto-Uranus opening square activations was about to align in the solar system around me.
Full Moon in Aquarius - 2 August 2012
We arrived at Makasa Lodge in northern Kwazulu-Natal for our annual ladies birding get-together on the Full Moon of the 2nd August 2012. Two weeks later, a close friend would be dead and I would be battling tick-bite fever that would soon trigger, over the next couple of months an auto-immune syndrome, induced menopause and atypical migraine that could suddenly without warning, temporarily make me blind in one and then eventually both eyes. At the time, I thought I was losing my mind.
Transiting Neptune in a retrograde stellium with Hygiea (health themes) and Chiron (wounded maverick), not only square to the transiting Lunar Nodal Axis but also square to my own natal Lunar Nodal Axis and natal Neptune. The Neptune (transit)-Neptune (natal) angular alignment is a call to serve a higher cause of life and truth. At the risk of sounding trite, it is a red-pill challenge and opportunity to escape blue-pill comfort and safety. The Scorpio-Taurus Lunar Nodal axis is about the right use of our resources and our worth. Natal Venus square the Nodal axis communicates challenges around finances and relationship. Transiting Neptune on Venus (and natal Scorpio Neptune) a call to spiritualise relationship/sexuality and worth/resources/finances.
Nodal reversal - 15 December 2012
The transiting Lunar Nodal axis aligned in a Nodal reversal on my natal Lunar Nodal axis at the end of that year, when Neptune stationed direct exactly conjunct my natal Venus.
At the time, I couldn't accept my vulnerability and disintegrating health (life). I felt unsafe. I was unable to surrender to the overwhelming reality that had gripped me. I didn't trust the process of life. I couldn't surrender control, I struggled upstream against the flow. After 4 months of being ill, in a small gap of relative wellness, I took on a high-risk corporate IT contract to feel safe again. 6 months later, everything fell apart.
The Neptune archetype shifts our values through life experiences beyond our control. One of these value shifts relates to happiness. Our happiness starts off depending on life being good and going our way. Only through the shifts in consciousness triggered by the influence of the Neptune archetype, does our relationship with happiness change to encompass a more mature understanding – the love of life as it is, or accepting life on life’s terms (Nietzsche’s “amor fati”).
Neptune's influence dissolves (purges, shatters) our naivety, illusions, unrealistic expectations, wishful thinking, denial and fantasies - like thinking "I'm bullet-proof", "it won't happen to me" and "I'm in control". Through Neptune's influence, we are made aware of a higher reality (higher power / truth) we have no control over. In the midst of a hurricane or tsunami (Neptune) we are not in control. Through the Neptune qualities of acceptance, letting go and surrender, we learn to realise and acknowledge this higher power / truth. Neptune prepares the ego for conscious realisation and alignment to this higher power / truth. The evolutionary lesson is that nothing in our time and space (earth) reality is permanent (change is a constant) and no matter how much we know, there is always more to know. Neptune takes us to neutrality and non-attachment in relationship to change. It is not about what we (ego) want - it is about the truth (Neptune).
Neptune pulls us into finer and subtler levels of realisation and being. When we reach a place of love, neutrality and a higher truth, we transform negative into positive (Happiness). Wherever Neptune is in our charts, is where we can find neutrality, love and truth (Happiness) – where we accept and make peace with life exactly as it is without wanting it to be different. When we are born, we metaphorically have left the womb of paradise and need to recreate it consciously.
Neptune symbolises the need to accept the things we cannot change – and that is a value shift and change in itself and part of evolution. Pluto symbolises the need to change the things we can and Uranus, the ability to discern (wisdom) between what we need to accept and what we need to change. The outer planets - Neptune, Pluto and Uranus - shatter our egocentric reality to wake us up to a higher truth about our self and life.
Transiting Neptune opposite natal Pluto-Uranus Conjunction
If you're born in the mid 60s in the exact Pluto-Uranus conjunction at 15/16 degrees, you would have noticed that the Neptune retrograde in 2019, moved over this polarity point and now just a couple of days ago, moved direct for a third pass. The Virgo Pluto-Uranus placement is an archetype compulsively focused on critical thinking, improvement, change and growth. There is a need for personal humility, self-doubt, discrimination, purification and self-improvement through self-analysis. This influence can generate a chronic feeling of dissatisfaction with everything around us and incredible nervous tension. While we come into this world to serve and accelerate change we can lose perspective in our need for growth and end up relentless and destroy things systematically.
The ruler Neptune, now on the third pass over the polarity point, challenging us to transcend the duality of the Virgo-Pisces axis and as Jeff Green says, face our impractical, irrational denial of our cosmic connection (higher power / truth) in order to enter into a fuller relationship with life. When we do, we simplify ourselves and our lives emotionally and mentally and develop an inner peace, which enables "a sense of correct or proper work function within the whole, rather than doing any job just for work" (Green).
I read somewhere that the Pluto-Uranus generation is the "sleeper generation" which deeply resonated with my personal journey. It's as though many of us were programmed to fulfil a specific technology focussed imperative and the opening Pluto-Uranus square, a wake-up call. With this in mind I have a felt-sense of the gravity of this Neptune transit.
Transiting Neptune on the North Lunar Node
Neptune on the north Lunar Node can challenge us to learn values of sacrifice and service, include collective/environmental needs and circumstances into our personal vision, move beyond our negativity, trauma and pain and serve others. There is a need to embrace the messiness of life and learn patience for process. Letting go of rigidity, learning humility and transforming all life experiences into a learning opportunity is key. Efforts should be oriented to serve a higher truth and should not be self-indulgent.
The specific way in which a Neptune influence can impact us is dependent on (1) the placements in our birth chart and (2) on our level of consciousness (the Dalai Lama has a very different level of consciousness to that of Mike Tyson for example).
The experience of Neptune can look like this:
1. We get carried away without discrimination because we're naive, or we're relying on luck or wishful thinking (it always worked for us in the past). Neptune will bring experiences that dissolve our luck, wishful thinking and naivety. We need to become more conscious, involved, establish healthy boundaries, take charge of our situation and accept the consequence of our actions.
2. We face difficulty or overwhelm that makes us want to give up, exit or look for the easy way out (like someone to rescue us). What is required is for us to become conscious and step up, put in more effort, have patience for process, hold the tension of not-knowing and do the difficult work required.
3. We experience stagnation, paralysis, or impotence despite our best efforts. Some attitude, self-righteousness, self-entitlement or false belief needs to be purged, made conscious or let go of.
4. Feeling overwhelmed, flooded or crushed by personal or life circumstances. We are being humbled. Accept our lack of control, embrace the unknown and go with the flow. Look at the big picture.
5. Existential crises, loss of meaning, feeling abandoned by God, loss of spiritual connection, emptiness or despair. We are being humbled. Examine wishful thinking, unrealistic ideals, fantasies, expectations and assumptions needing to be dissolved. Life is not about us but about a greater truth. Accept the challenge of existence.
6. Autoimmune disorders mirror an underlying psychological anxiety, fear, lack of security or overwhelm. We need to let go of the need to control every outcome (ideal of perfection), connect with a higher power (truth) and trust in the process of life.
7. Something we are attached to is taken away from us. Release attachments, embrace a more flexible approach and flow with life.
8. Going against expectations. Following inspiration on a path that appears impractical. Trusting natural instinct over socially conditioned expectations. Venturing into unknown but knowing it is right and authentic. This is an experience of Neptunian awakening.
9. Something about who we are and what we do suddenly generates public interest, possibly becoming a public figure or becoming an influencer on a mass scale. This is a Neptunian experience of accessing collective consciousness.
10. Having new realisations, revelations and uncovering new abilities and skills. Feeling connected to the divine and at one with everything. Feeling blissful and alive. This is a Neptunian experience of spiritual awakening.
The exact nature and character of how Neptune and other planets aspecting the Lunar Nodal axis plays out in your life, depends on your birth date, time and place. If you are interested in learning about Evolutionary Astrology, the Lunar Nodes and planets aspecting the Nodes in your birth chart to get deeper insight into your self and life, I run a 12 week online course called 12 Steps to Mastery. Read about it on my website.
Fernandez, Maurice. Neptune The 12th House and Pisces. Victoria: Trafford, 2004.
Fernandez, Maurice. Neptune The 12th House and Pisces. United States: River of Stars Publication, 2018.
Green, Jeff. Pluto The Evolutionary Journey of the Soul Volume 1. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1994.
Richelle Steyn certified as an Evolutionary Astrologer through The Comprehensive Diploma Course (Maurice Fernandez).
(C) Copyright 2019 Richelle Steyn. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be used or reproduced without the written permission of the author. www.richellesteyn.co.za