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All About Neptune

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We access the three outer planets in a different way than the others. The distance we have to reach in order to make a conscious response to their influence in us is symbolized by their sheer distance from the earth. To truly understand the part of us represented by these planets, we have to reach beyond ourselves, set our eye on goals of self-actualization that go beyond the material, the short term, or the narrow vision of a life made up of simply stimulus and response. If we don't bring the urges these planets represent into consciousness, we may only experience them in their unconscious effects, responding low on the spectrum of possibility without realizing the source of these urges and harnessing them for their true and higher purpose. We become victims to our own shadow without even identifying it.


Neptune represents this very urge - to look higher and to gain a perspective that is much larger than just our own. Neptune represents that surrender we feel when we allow power from a greater source than ourselves to fill us. This goes beyond any kind of religious reference, although the practice of religion can be one way that we seek this surrender and this greater sense of oneness. The urge is more whole and basic than that; simply, it is the urge to connect, to merge. Many of us have that feeling when we are being inspired creatively, or when we worship, or when we see a commercial about those in need who need our help. It is about recognizing that we are all not as far apart from each other as we think.


The location of Neptune in our chart is where we need to seek visions and inspiration. When we are waiting for a "divine" message to ourselves, how will it look? When we are in tune with the part of us that is seeking something intangible, something more, something we can barely describe, we are probably tuning into Neptune. Neptune's language is symbolism. We must let its messages speak to us in its chosen language. Neptune will never give ABC instructions. Neptune gives us visions, and then we interpret those visions and direct our lives. But when we try and make that symbolism, that dream, that vision literal, we are missing the point. Icons and symbols that have existed through time and continue to inspire us can do so best because of what they represent to us and the unique way we interpret that symbol, according to who we are, what we need and are looking for. It is also important to remember that our visions may not translate universally. When we get caught up believing that what we see is true across the board and try to force it on others, we have lost Neptune and are now swimming in our own ego.


When we seek Neptune, we are often seeking a feeling of touching another world, reaching outside of ourselves and what we normally feel and experience in our own bodies and minds alone. We may do this in many ways; some people with prayer, some with meditation, and some are just suddenly sparked with inspiration. It is whatever it is you do to open yourself up to messages from other sources. But self-deception is prevalent with a low response to Neptune. Symbols and visions can be so open to interpretation that we can read just about anything we want into it, and can delude ourselves about what the message is really about. The urge to transcend into the unknown may turn out to just be a 'flight into light,' an escape, a temporary numbness, which is not the same. When we are just numbing ourselves or using temporary means to 'escape', we tend to manifest the darker side of Neptune, which is a kind of spaced out attitude, always feeling confusion because we are trying to seek the vision but following the wrong star. Neptune's symbols must be received in this realm of transcendence, but to put them to any use, we must come back down to earth. If we try and stay in the vision, pretty soon we aren't hearing or seeing anything at all, we have just escaped into our delusions and numbness.


Many people associate Neptune escapism with drugs and alcohol. This can be a very accurate association, but it is not the only method with which we choose to escape. Too much of any substance or activity that alters and numbs us, including things like television, or even a relationship that causes us to drown for too long in another person, can also be an escape.


Neptune was discovered in 1846 and takes about 165 years to orbit the sun. It spends about 14 years going through a sign. People close to your age probably share your sign placement of Neptune, as well as Uranus and Pluto, depending on how close in age to you they are. The three outer planets imprint their generation (or a mini generation in the case of Uranus and Neptune which move faster than Pluto) with a certain cosmic consciousness, a vibration that you share with those close to your age, which is why these planets are sometimes referred to as the generational planets. Some astrologers seem to indicate that the sign of the outer planets is not as important since it's shared by those of your generation; I don't believe this is so. Neptune's sign is significant and can tell you something about the method of your inspiration and visions. The effect that Neptune has on mini-generation is the forming of a sort of cultural myth, an inspirational dream. These are the things that the part of society who carries this Neptune imprint generally holds dear and is inspired by. When each mini-generation grows up they carry this myth inside them forward into their adult lives.


Here's a small and imperfect Neptune 'cookbook'. Find your Neptune sign and house for a snippet about your natal chart. Since Neptune has too long passed out of certain signs and not yet entered certain signs (since its discovery), I’ve only discussed the signs that are pertinent at this writing.  If you don't know where your Neptune is, you can create a free chart here and find out! Remember, anything taken out of context of the entire blend of your natal chart is like an ingredient in a dish without the other ingredients to add nuance and complexity. Digest these ingredients with a grain of salt, so to speak! 


Neptune in Leo

During the period of time that Neptune was in Leo, there was a vision of selfexpression to the maximum degree.  Have fun, be yourself, don’t let anybody hold you back, and light the night on fire.  If you have Neptune in Leo, you can be inspired by a vision of the great things you can become, of your own personal greatness, one which you can build on if you are willing to take that dream a step further into reality. 


Neptune in Virgo

During the period of time that Neptune was in Virgo, the world was concerned with conservation and carefulness, where efficient use of one’s resources was on the mind of many as the Great Depression began.  Personally, Neptune in Virgo can inspire with a vision of achieving perfection, of humbly seeking to make things better and purify.  Your personal challenge is to not let your vision of perfection cloud your own ability and motivation to strive for what’s realistic — a better you, not a perfect you.


Neptune in Libra

During the period of time that Neptune was in Libra, doe-eyed and puppy love romance was inspiring.  The cultural myth you carry forward within you is a vision of true love.  Embedded in your mini generation is the belief and longing for a spiritual connection with another, being moved by the stories of everlasting love, even sometimes to a fault of being too naïve as to what true love on earth really looks like.  Whatever your particular stance is on true love, apart from or in line with your generation, your personal challenge in this life is to allow a vision of what love can be to inspire you, while keeping your feet on the ground about the realities of cultivating such a love.  


Neptune in Scorpio

During the period of time that Neptune was in Scorpio, the inspiration gravitated from “true love” to “free love.”  The cultural myth was a sense of openness about who you share yourself physically with, a reenchantment with sexuality, which represented on the whole, a feeling that what was ‘taboo’ can be brought out into the open.  Personally, you may be inspired by the idea of bringing what is hidden out into the open, to investigate those things that some might consider too dark or unacceptable to admit about ourselves and the world. Your personal challenge in this life is to stay clear and honest about what you are seeing and making sure that your search for what is buried doesn’t lead you to invent darkness that isn’t there, due to an obsession with finding it.  


Neptune in Sagittarius

During the period of time that Neptune was in Sagittarius, the inspiration lightened.  This mini-generation carries with it a lust for life and adventure, a sense that what lies beyond one’s four walls is worth exploring and has much to teach us.  The quest for meaning that’s ‘out there somewhere’ is the vision your mini-generation carries forward.  A spirit of open seeking is a vision that can continually feed you personally, if you allow your search for meaning to always be continuing.  Be careful about settling too early and too solidly on “The Truth.”  


Neptune in Capricorn

During the period of time that Neptune was in Capricorn,there was a growing sense of responsibility toward the world; a feeling that we need to build structures to support those in need and help provide for them.  Perhaps this was in response to the previous generation’s quest to see the world and become aware of it.  The danger of this generation lies in becoming too much of the authoritarian.  Your personal challenge lies in not making a god out of the idea of control and responsibility to the point where the necessary and balancing faith and chaos parts of life are denied inside of you.   


Neptune in Aquarius

Neptune is still in Aquarius at the time of this writing, so the mini-generation still being born will carry forward the vision of change.  They will be imprinted with the ability to see things in a truly fresh way, and an ability to embrace and handle all the chaos that comes with those changes in thinking and the chaos that comes with the information overload we are experiencing during this time.  Personally, a new vision of what it means to be an individual will perhaps make each person in this minigeneration a little more unique than we can yet imagine. 



Neptune in the 1st house

Throughout your life you are redefining your vision of who you are and as you do the way you see the world and others will change with it.  Your lessons involve developing healthy boundaries for yourself and your challenge will be building a clear sense of identity.  Be careful that your own will isn’t always taking a backseat to other people, especially those who seem to need a lot from you.    


Neptune in the 2nd house

Your sense of your own resources, both material and internal, may be difficult for you to pin down.  In the 2nd house we must take stock of what we are worth and how we decide to use our resources.  For you, there is a sense of fluidity about personal and material resources.  You may find that you always seem to manage just fine, even if you don’t balance that checkbook daily and things go up and down.  With your sense of your own worth, that too, may fluctuate for you. Your challenge is to see your potential, the vision of what is inside of you, and then release it any way you can.  


Neptune in the 3rd house

You are most aware that the five senses are not all that shapes your perception.  It is important that you trust your intuition in your judgments but that you are on careful guard against self deception.  With Neptune here, your greatest challenge will be discerning the difference between objective fact and personal truth.  


Neptune in the 4th house

In the 4th house we find our deepest and most private selves.  This is the road to the maze of twists and turns that make up who we are, subconsciously.  Inherent to your very nature is the soul of a poet.  Your imagination is strong because it is through symbols that you touch your deepest self.  You are not likely to find easily definable truths about your early and/or subconscious life, but get in touch with yourself more through dreams and an opening to messages from your inner self that might not always speak succinctly, but it does speak.  


Neptune in the 5th house

Essential to experiencing a sense of joy and lightness is the development of your imagination. While this is true for everyone, it’s especially true for you. Daydreaming is more than just a relaxing pastime; your daydreams will lead to real inspiration which will renew your heart whenever you are in need.  While daydreaming has meaning for you, do not stay stuck in this first phase or you may find your well drying up.  


Neptune in the 6th house

This placement lends a natural tendency for you to idealize a selfsacrificing kind of attitude.  You may find it difficult to keep boundaries in tact when it comes to how much you can do and give in a day.  Allow your sense of imagination and inspiration to feed your daily routine, even if sometimes you are a little unrealistic about what you can accomplish, but your challenge will be not over-promising yourself in other areas to the point where you cannot meet your obligations and burn yourself out, all in the name of kindness.  


Neptune in the 7th house

As with the first house, people with Neptune here must be careful about their boundaries between themselves and the important people in their life.  Part of you has a natural tendency to give away what is yours, literally and/or figuratively.  Losing perspective and drowning in someone else is a danger.  You may find yourself drawn to people who have that kind of artistic quality about them, some sort of dreaminess or romance about them.  This is appropriate because you can learn a lot from people who seem to be visionaries themselves.  A healthy relationship will leave you inspired to create your own vision rather than simply adopt someone else’s vision.  


Neptune in the 8th house

To bond deeply with another person, you must be able to connect spiritually to them and to feel that more than flesh and luck keeps you together and draws you toward each other.  There must be a sense of the magical about that person, and about the bond you share.  It may be difficult for you to share some of the dark places in yourself with this person, so you must find someone who reflects back the truth to you in a compassionate and gentle manner, so you can surrender to the bond with them.    


Neptune in the 9th house

In the 9th house, we seek meaning, we seek to learn, to open ourselves.  For you, you must open yourself to cross as many boundaries and religious/moral “rules” as you can, to get a picture of the core universal truths that will inspire you.  You have the ability to perceive truths with a philosophical turn of mind that is not bound by convention.  Be ever seeking.  You may find yourself inspired by truths that embrace sharing and intuition and love for everyone at their core.  


Neptune in the 10th house

The work that you are meant to do in this life has to incorporate a visionary sense, even if the practical follows later.  You must work on allowing your intuition and your sense of what’s possible to speak to you enough to lead you to the work that inspires you; this must be at the forefront of the motivation that causes you to pursue whatever you dream.  Be cautious about how you translate your vision into reality; don’t stop with the vision or else it will never become reality.  


Neptune in the 11th house

You may find that it’s especially difficult for you to know where you will end up in 5 or 10 years. You benefit most from allowing yourself to be inspired by visions that may seem vague to some that want a 5 year step by step plan, but for you, serve as a north star, guiding not your footsteps, but your heart, toward what you want in the future.  Don’t stay stuck drifting because you are waiting for that vision to clear up, surrender to the guide and just keep walking forward.    

Neptune in the 12th house

In quiet spaces is where you’ll receive the most vivid visions and inspiration.  Obvious practices like meditation may move you, but any time you allow yourself some private space and some quiet time, you will be able to hear things that you don’t hear in your every day life, feel and see things that seem to speak to you from another world.  Surrender to the Universe; let it touch your spirit.  This is the most difficult house to define, for it is where we find our connection, our oneness, with divinity and each other. 


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