As the farthest known planet from the Sun in our solar system, Neptune, the 8th planet’s astronomical description is entirely appropriate to its astrological. It’s the densest giant planet and it moves very slowly. In astrology, it rules Pisces and is considered the planet of deception, spirituality, illusion, and addiction. It’s not all bad, though- as with other things, the flip sides are the good sides and intuition, dreams, sensitivity, mercy and compassion also fall under its auspices.

Interestingly enough, you also can’t see Neptune without help and its discovery wasn’t by way of actually seeing it: it was actually found using math. Alexis Brouvard started to notice that Uranus was behaving a little funny so he shined a flashlight in its eyes- no no, actually, what happened was he noticed there were some changes in its orbit people hadn’t really expected. He recognized this was likely due to it being in close proximity to a planet they had yet to discover- and Urbain Le Verrier predicted a position that might explain this from there.

Then, in 1846, Johann Galle whipped out a telescope and went looking- and he found it within a degree of that exact position. Technically speaking, Galileo probably did discover it much earlier, but at the time he did so, he just assumed that it was fixed star.

Neptune is known as something of a reality altering influence- which probably explains why it rules drugs and addiction. That said: are all drugs bad? No, absolutely not. Is escaping reality bad? Have you SEEN reality lately? That said, it’s really kind of difficult to change a reality you cannot face- which is where the problem with Neptune tends to lay. It makes it a little more difficult to decipher facts when feelings are involved and the lies we tell ourselves often change our perception more than any mind altering substance could. Except for maybe mescaline. I’m pretty sure mescaline might beat out bullshitting yourself.

Still, there’s definitely something said for the power of hopes, dreams, and being able to see things in an almost naive light from time to time.

The Retrograde

We get one Neptune retrograde a year but it lasts for a little over 5 months. If you have had areas of your life where you’re not being quite as honest with yourself as you should be- you might be getting your cognitive dissonance thumped pretty hard. I have, however, seen enough of these cycles come and go to recognize that like all those types of things: cognitive dissonance thumped often just gets even stronger for it. Kind of a shame really.

What should happen, rather is that those things which obscure the truth, whether you did it or someone else does it clears away. Reality knocks, you answer the door- maybe sometimes this sucks, but ultimately, it beats continuing to believe something that’s simply not true.

Lies, no matter how many people tell them, no matter how much you try to convince yourself otherwise: are not the truth. Neptune retrograde is usually a time when the truth comes stomping on in and whether you sit down and look at it or not is entirely up to you.

PlanetStationary (retrograde)OppositionStationary (direct)Notes
Mercury1 November, 201911 November, 201921 November, 2019In water-sign Scorpio
Mercury18 February, 202026 February, 20209 March, 2020Begins in water-sign Pisces, Concludes in air-sign Aquarius
Mercury17 June, 202030 June, 202012 July, 2020In water-sign Cancer
Mercury13 October, 202024 October, 20203 November, 2020Begins in water-sign Scorpio, Concludes in air-sign Libra
Venus13 May, 20203 June, 202025 June, 2020
Mars9 September, 202013 October, 202014 November, 2020
Jupiter14 May, 202013 July, 202013 September, 2020
Saturn11 May, 202021 July, 202029 September, 2020
Uranus11 August, 201928 October, 201911 January, 2020
Uranus15 August, 202031 October, 202014 January, 2021
Neptune21 June, 201910 September, 201927 November, 2019
Neptune23 June, 202011 September, 202029 November, 2020
Pluto24 April, 20193 October, 2019
Pluto25 April, 20204 October, 2020
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