This Year’s Neptune Retrograde and Stations
Neptune Retrograde and Stations 2023
Neptune is currently direct (i.e. moving forwards)
If you’re even a novice scholar of astrology, you’ve heard of Mercury Retrograde. “Retrograde” means “moving backwards.” So when we say Mercury is retrograde, we mean that it’s moving backwards in apparent motion from our viewpoint here on Earth. Yes, it’s a visual illusion, but a meaningful and measurable one. But did you know about Neptune Retrograde?
What Are the Stations of Neptune?
Neptune goes retrograde too. When Neptune slows, stops, and turns backwards or forwards, we call that moment a “station.” An astrologer might say, “Neptune is stationing retrograde” when Neptune is in the process of turning backwards. When Neptune is in the process of turning forwards, we say “Neptune is stationing direct today.”
I call these stations “pivotal days,” because the planet we’re talking about is literally pivoting— and also because stations tend to lead to pivotal events for those of us Earthlings who are being affected by them. Those pivotal events will trigger changes in us, and that will happen according to the nature of the transiting planet, in this case, Neptune.
What is the Significance of Neptune?
As the Dreamer, the Artist, the Visionary, the Imaginer, Neptune re-visions, re-dreams the old into the new. Neptune does this gently, like ocean waves lapping at the shore, softly blurring the lines between things and allowing them to merge into each other, disintegrating the old and allowing a new vision to arise.
What To Expect From a Neptune Transit
Neptune is likely to paint a picture that’s rosier than the truth. Because of this, during a Neptune transit, you may fantasize or even outright delude yourself about whatever area of your life Neptune is touching. Beware of marrying or moving in together when Neptune is transiting your Venus, because any relationship you commit to then is likely to not take all the factors into account. The new career direction you take when Neptune is transiting your Saturn could be a red herring trail. Anything which seems too good to be true during a Neptune transit might well be.
During a Neptune transit you may be more tired than usual, as if your inner worlds are yawning open, calling you to look within instead of without. A Neptune transit softens you, opening up wells of sympathy, understanding and compassion within you. It sensitizes you to subtleties you may have been ignoring or unaware of.
Your intuition is stronger during a Neptune transit, and you are reminded of the value of intangibles. A beautiful vision can carry you through moments of despair on the long journey to making it real.
Neptune in Pisces, 2011-2026
Neptune entered Pisces on April 4, 2011. This is a shift we all felt, with a very specific meaning and purpose. Pisces is ruled by Neptune, and so Neptune in Pisces signals a doubly strong period of universal understanding, spiritualism, collective dreams, idealism, and humanism, as well as fear and disillusionment.
The last time Neptune was in Pisces was in the mid-19th century. It marked a time of countless European revolutions, the Civil War, and a resurgence of mysticism. Neptune in Pisces will spend 15 years slowly injecting fantasy, compassion, imagination, music, art, religion, dreams, the subconscious, drugs, inspiration and idealism into the current zeitgeist.
If you are a Pisces or have significant Pisces placements, you will undergo a major dissolving of former dreams and the construction of brand new ones. By the end of Neptune’s passage through Pisces, you will find yourself on a completely different shore, with little understanding of how you sequentially got there.
Read more about Neptune in Pisces here.
What happens during Neptune Retrograde?
When Neptune goes retrograde, the influence of its need to dream is turned even more inwards. The introverted function of Neptune is to make us question our most cherished ideals. We are readjusting our relationship to our fantasies, seeing through our illusions and coming to terms with the unreality of our holy grails.
Dreams as a Moving Target during Neptune Retrograde
Neptune brings either rosy illusion or confusion and vague dissatisfaction to the natal planet Neptune is transiting. For example, Neptune transiting your Sun might make you confused about your core identity. You may feel like you don’t know when it started, but that now you’re not who you once were.
Neptune transiting your Venus might find you in a whirlwind romance with someone who seems to be perfect in every way. On the other hand, it might make you feel restless in your relationships. They could feel like they aren’t quite satisfying, although you can’t put your finger on why.
Understanding the Neptune cycle can help you
smoothly navigate periods of disillusionment
and dream up new alternatives.
To learn how Neptune functions in your chart
and how to use the retrograde cycle to your advantage,
Contact Pandora Astrology for a Natal and Transits Reading.
The Span of Neptune in 2023:
In 2023, Neptune travels to 27° Pisces, then turns retrograde and travels backward to 24° Pisces, turns direct and travels forward through 27° Pisces again. Then it moves into the next patch of degrees, where it will do the same thing next year.
How Will Neptune Retrograde 2023 affect you?
This means that if you have any planet in 24° to 27° Pisces, you are having a Neptune transit to that planet this year. Because Neptune in Pisces forms a challenging aspect to Virgo, Gemini and Sagittarius, if you have any planet in 24° to 27° of any of those signs, that planet is also having a Neptune transit.
Peaks in the intensity of this Neptune Retrograde:
You’ll feel a transit the most strongly when it’s exact and also during its stations, or pivotal days. So if you have Mercury at 26° Gemini, you’ll feel Neptune’s influence the most strongly when Neptune is passing through 26° Pisces, and also on the days it turns retrograde and direct.
In a reading, you can get a personalized diagram of Neptune’s transit, showing the exact dates to watch for. We talk about which of your own planets is being triggered by Neptune, what it means for you, and where in your life to look for its effects. This gives you a chance to see what’s coming and plan how to respond to it. Getting this kind of personally timed information is the main reason people consult astrologers.
How to handle your Neptune transit:
A Neptune transit is a great time to go on retreat because during a Neptune transit what you are supposed to do is dream. Dream deliberately, and dream consciously. There never was a better time for clarifying your vision and seeking the spiritual/metaphysical meaning behind the tangible things in your life than during a Neptune transit. But be aware: this is a better time for dreaming than doing.
This is no reason to allow your inner skeptic to rule the day. Neptune transits are not for reality; they are for dreaming, and dreams are not the same as goals. Goals are concrete and dreams are malleable stuff. However, goals must also be infused with dreams (or why would we pursue them?), and therefore dreaming is important.
So, get out of the world and into your imagination. Allow your mind to open and your intuition to expand. Ask yourself the really big questions: “Why do I do it all? What do I really want? Why am I here and why is my life the way it is?” Then, imagine something better. There’s no need to do anything about it right now. Just relax and dream.
Learn about Neptune in Pisces and other transiting planets in signs this year.
Here’s a video I made about Neptune Transits and How to Handle Them.
Here’s how to know if you’re having a transit this year: Are You Currently In Transition?
Read my Frequently Asked Questions about astrology.