by Boots Hart, CAP

Monday, April 21, 2014

Mercury in Taurus / Neptune at 7 Pisces

Pasaulio Sutverimas II (Creation of the World II)
by Mikalojus Konstantinas Ciurlionis (1906-1907)

As Mercury enters Taurus this Wednesday (April 23rd at 10:25 p.m. UT/+0 time) some things tone down...just a bit. Feelings of being on edge begin rounding out as life takes on a more genteel and considered, giving tone.

Yet at the same time that things are becoming less ‘cutting,’ they’re also becoming a bit...well, let’s just call it what it is: muddled - which goes to the other astrological matter timing out to Wednesday, namely planet Neptune’s shift into 7 Pisces.

And what’s so special about that?

That’s special because Neptune will remain at 7 Pisces from now through it’s station in early June (yes, I said June) until in retrograde Neptune ‘backs’ out of 7 Pisces into 6 Pisces - which won’t happen until we’re closing in on the end of July.

That’s a lot of time to be spent with Neptune at 7 Pisces, which suggests a metaphysical ‘emphasis’ on this point.

So what would Neptune at 7 Pisces be about? The degree itself is known for changing and changeable conditions and various not-so-very ‘crystal clear’ influences.

And that’s even without adding in any sort of ‘Neptune effect.’ So since Neptune is known for both idealism and illusion, equally promoting elation and desperation depending on our need to experience our feeling would seem that there is an overarching period (the Neptune/7 Pisces factor) which starts now and runs through almost all of July, and as part of that, Mercury is now entering Taurus.

And of course ...just to be fair here...the opposite could also be just as true: as Mercury entering Taurus can be a ‘color commentary’ on the activation of the ‘Neptune/7 Pisces’ theme, so too could we say that Neptune’s entering Pisces is a commentary on the two-week dash through Taurus Mercury is about to make.

The astrology of Neptune starts with its being the last true and full-fledged planet in our solar system as we head ‘out into the unknown’...or maybe just away from our personal consciousness and point of view - all that which is so brilliantly signified by our Sun.

Thus Neptune stands on the edge between all which is known...or even able to be known...and the un(not)known and/or not knowable - a metaphorical image which places planet Neptune in the position of inspiring us to explore (that which is unknown) and that which may well represent ‘the lifting of a veil’ or a ‘melting away of preconception’ or some dissolving of a wall or barrier - whether it’s in our heart or mind or out there in the street - whatever is keeping you from whatever you could experience and grow through experiencing...that’s where Neptune works.

And that’s why Neptune tends to be experienced as painful. We humans like our preconceptions as much (or more) than we like that favorite food from some childhood memory. We scream and scream for change and then cling to the old and known, often limiting ourselves through our reluctance to see beyond our pre-dreamed definition of what nirvana is.

In fact, it would be completely Neptunian (and Neptune-Taurus/Mercury) for me to suggest here that given our mortal and human perspective we have no ability to envision - never mind define - what nirvana may be. Or not be.

That difference...that gap between what we know and what we cannot know is very Neptunian in its ability to get us to wonder - and equally Neptunian in its ability to confound us with our own incongruities. As a psychological indicator the astrological (and astrology of) Neptune leads us through whatever  gives us (or makes us) pause entirely because of this factor, entirely because in our drive to become who we teaches us to excel through personal focus in a world which can’t have every person focused so exclusively on their Self lest we destroy each other in our self absorption.

All of which leads us to the idea of Pisces - the sign Neptune is transiting and co-ruler of. During Neptune’s long (and no doubt resonant) stay at 7 Pisces we will be learning most of all how ‘wise’ our directions, choices and belief systems are. What we will come into all such situations with will be some conviction that ‘we know.’

But do we? Do we really know - or have we been operating on a knowledge of theory?

Where idea meets human experience is expressed variously by the metaphysics of the zodiac. In this case the ‘idea’ of what works for everyone is Aquarian and the emotional triumph or toll is typically Piscean. Ever since Neptune entered Pisces (this time around) back in 2011 events of many kinds have forced us to consider how we are connected to what goes on in our world.

Some of that has been wonderful. Some of our experiences have been exceedingly unpleasant. And why is that? Astrology suggests that some a part of our ongoing (and new) difficulties have to do with us...probably more than a little bit. That tendency we all have to ‘cherry pick’ what we like in a situation, our willingness to ignore or deny things which don’t fit what we want to believe about things...?

Any choice which is not exclusive, or which by nature is restricted by some feeling on our part which negates or excludes the truth of what others feel (whether that’s about us or the subject at hand or anything else)...that is the sort of thing Neptune’s 2011-2025 transit of Pisces is bound to cover. During this time we will all learn a lot about our own orientation towards feelings. We will veer away from them, we’ll do that very Neptunian thing and project them...we’ll even pretend they neither matter nor need to be taken into account.

All such choices will be made on the basis of something we ‘know’ or think we know as fact...and yet after a traverse of the Pisces landscape, many such ‘gut feelings’ which turn out to fears.

Neptune transits tend to teach us to feel our fears not so that we can back away, but so we can begin to understand why we care. And what caring is about. Why it matters not just to ‘them’ but to us - as in for our purely human sake. (Humans don’t do well without feelings).

Through understanding what we care about and WHY we care about it, we come to a better place with, and within our personal Self.

That’s Neptune in Pisces, a process which sounds deceptively simple and even cuddly until we find out its anything but simply because in the world of human beings the known is always easier to opt for than the unknown.

As for Mercury, an everyday transit of Taurus by Mercury would be about about keeping things going the way we want them to go in general, and that’s one major theme we can expect to live through (and hear about) until Mercury moves on into Gemini as of May 7th. There will be a natural mental (Mercury) focus on matters and details having to do with the day-to-day business of living and we can expect at least a surface display of mainstream attention to all things central, societal and functional (read: food, money, transportation, scheduling, power systems, etc.)

Into all this will steal the Neptune/7 Pisces shift. It may well be subtle and for some it will manifest in confusion. So long as our goals are neither ego-driven nor ego-rewarding (individually or collectively) things may go a bit awry but with proper attention from those with ability in the name of the common cause (the term “common” here meaning either ‘common to everyone/all’ or ‘commonly encountered in everyday life’), much can be accomplished.

However...with this being said, Neptune effects (and transits) can be famously painful, particularly if or where we’re used to being ‘in control.’

Neptune processes favor the dissolution of what is most of all so that we can learn more, learn better and move on and Neptune functions as a great ‘societal’ or ‘humanistic’ leveler.

We’ll be thinking about such things throughout this time. Particularly as we move into and through the April 29th solar eclipse events and situations will continue providing whatever it will take to get us to feel.

The good news is that Mercury in Taurus tends towards concrete terms. The bad news is that Mercury in Taurus tends to want ‘proof’ before it does anything.

Venus (on left) and Mercury photographed in the sky above Paris
(photo credit: Josselin Desmars)
And yes, Taurus is a fixed sign - so like all fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius being the zodiacal quartet) it’s ‘pace’ has to do with ‘processing’ something. So in our own world as well as that of others, there is going to be a bit of waiting.

Unpopular waiting, that is. Though capable of the  decent, kind and noble Mercury Taurus does tend to wend something of a bullish way between poles of selfishness and generosity.

And there is one other little thing - beyond how notorious Mercury in Taurus is for moments of sheer, unmitigated stubbornness...those entirely enchanting (read: not enchanting at all) moments of ‘I can, so I will...’ that some strongly affected by this transit will pull through machinations of power, rank or leverage.

That ‘one thing’ is how Mercury/Neptune contacts tend to manifest in anything but the truth because we don’t want to be a universalist...or where we don’t want to feel any “inconvenient” feelings (‘inconvenient to us,’ that is).

When that happens, we tend to dig in. Some of us will be ‘clouded’ by feelings and not have the ‘foggiest’ what to do. Some of us will not want to see or listen - we’ll wrap ourselves in a veil of inner longings (our ‘dream image’) either to confound our own clarity of mind or because seeing, sensing or hearing something would require us to change.

And we’re scared of that. For whatever reasons we’re scared, we’re scared of that...which suggests that as our global mindset shifts from the courageous if often a bit self-centered Mercury in Aires transit (that which is just finishing) for plus and minus we each leave our visionary world of inner mental conviction we arrive at not just the Mercury in Taurus need to ‘get real’ on some very basic level but Mercury in Taurus all ‘aglow’ with promise, we reconsider.

The ‘default” for Mercury in Taurus involves structuring and building what we have so that we can build our way into the future - our future. Taurus is full of promise, with the only question really being whether that promise will get used...and if used, used for what.

Our general times are telling us that some changes are under way. Whether we look at eclipse cycles or the rise of the Aquarian Age some things are slowly but surely passing away and we’re not always comfortable with that.

But that feeling isn’t being ‘caused’ by them. We feel what we feel because we learned to feel that way - and to ignore that is to prevent ourselves from going forward...which is generally unproductive, to say the least.

Also - since I’ve just mentioned the eclipse, messenger Mercury will be moving through 8 Taurus within just a few days (call it April 11th or 12th, depending on your location) and that will tend to either ‘trigger’ eclipse effects for everyone to some extent. It’s therefore not unlikely to expect some people to suddenly see some ‘error’ in their thinking, plans or ways of going about things in general while others will press forward ever so resolutely.

Some things will begin to change at this point. Other things will be proven to be substantially lacking in validity or even feasibility. Even without Neptune’s famously infamous ‘now you think you know you aren’t so sure’ quality this is likely to be a delicate time calling for some form of sensitivity.

Taurus is a sign about basic human need and necessity. It’s a sign all about what it takes to be someone in this world and the kind of bedrock ability to be a person, a mortal human being unto our Self. All the ‘native’ strengths we use in life, all which feeds our needs so that we can exist, carry on and excel - all that is natively Taurus. As Mercury transits Taurus the entire subject of ‘mentality’ is likely to come to center stage as various (Neptunian) truths and fictions come to light in our individual as well as societal lives. With everyone still pushing through a seeming endless set of challenges (reflecting the Venus-Mercury-Mars/Saturn retrogrades which began last December) there will be frustration and a few rash speeches made all around.

Some will avoid truths, some will choose to lie and some will come realize actualities far different from the assumptions they had been proceeding on. In some areas we will find out that things really are as we were thinking they were (or as we were told they were). In others, confusion may reign making some problems simply least for now.

Mercury/Neptune as a signal of duplicitous activities suggests that some will ‘falsify for gain’ or be led astray now. Then again, they may know exactly what they’re doing - or their standards of consideration or for making decisions may be completely different than yours.

What do such things mean?

Nothing about this transit has to be malicious or ‘bad’ though it’s likely that during the next couple of weeks (and yes, on through May into June and July) implications will arise which cast doubts on some ‘known’ (singular or plural)...while other perhaps less “likely” solutions become viable. is not ‘the thing’ which counts: it’s your orientation to your own capacity for balancing feelings against fact, hope against loss, reality against faith which mostly matters and matters most. Without question, some of us will now learn that some ‘theory’ we have been working with or proceeding on the basis of was incorrect...or being incorrectly applied.

Planet Neptune in its natural coloration with moons Proteus at the top, Larissa
at the lower right and Despina on the left.
(photo credit: Hubble Space Telescope, NASA-JPL)

But that’s just life too. Sometimes an idea is just an idea - we can’t put it into play wholesale, but we can be informed by it so that the choices we do make (in part because of our ideas are more acceptable (viable, useful) to everyone else...and thus how we come to be respected, cherished and rewarded by others.

This is one of the great Taurus-Scorpio polarity points: both signs gain more by offering than demanding. The power and control denoted by both Taurus and Scorpio are to be applied to ourselves so that we can bring the best out in that Self and thus earn position, power and that sort of control we think of as leadership.

If and where we can have faith in exploring new ways of approaching foundational issues now, astrology suggests much can come of our efforts and interactions providing we bear in mind that the (Neptune) universal perspective is as yet unclear. That’s not the easiest order to fulfill as Mercury’s two week transit of Taurus is bound to manifest in assessments and question of a practical and pragmatic kind.

Still Neptune teaches that we must allow ourselves not to know...which means we can only try - and when necessary, try again. We evidently don’t know know everything which can happen as yet...and just owning that much may cause ripples in whatever life pond we happen to swim in. Recognizing that seems to be part of our process as Neptune sets us up to experience its call to the experience of altruism, loss, faith, inspiration and despair imaged by the Sabian degree definition ‘A GIRL BLOWING A BUGLE.’

The girl is a young person - this is not a ‘full grown’ moment in time. It is young and therefore innocent as yet of what can happen but still driven by the power of the discovering mind. The image being of a female is not a reference to gender but rather to rather the metaphysics of ‘yin’ and thus the accumulated standing or experience which we are now ‘trumpeting’ (calling) to others with...or which is calling us.

And it just may be both...which brings us to our question: what, to whom and how will we answer that call? Are we willing to understand where that call is coming from and why it's important just now?

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