By David A. Wheatley
There are two astrological events going on that interest me greatly; one is somewhat under the radar and one is going to cover the radar screen completely.
The under-rated under the radar aspect is where transiting Neptune is now in relation to where it is in the US natal chart (or where it was when the US was “born”.)
We are in a unique period where there is a Pluto return at the same time as a Neptune opposition to its natal position in the US chart. The Pluto return is opposite natal Mercury along the 2nd and 8th house axis. This clearly indicates a period of a couple years of major economic/financial challenges filtered through 9th house idealism. The most tangible manifestation of this is how supporting Ukraine’s resistance to Russian aggression is inflating the cost of living. That the causes are far away in another country is perfectly in keeping with the US 9th house position of Neptune. We remain in this moment into 2024. Are Americans willing to pay at the pump and more for everything else to help push back totalitarians in eastern Europe? This theme isn’t unique to the US but easy to see how this transit by Neptune is substantial in the US economy and therefore elsewhere. It doesn’t seem likely that western allies are going to back off this commitment however in America there are sympathetic voices to Vladimir Putin.
There’s also the darker side of Pluto in this. Being that Pluto’s return to its natal placement in the US chart is 2nd and 8th house, the 8th house hearkens back to investments made in the past and how well they serve us in the present. Investments of all kinds, not strictly financial investments. Diplomatic investments. Research investments. Emotional investments in our families and jobs.
Oil is something from the past, serving in the present. Oil is also involved in the powers that dominate corporate America (Pluto in Capricorn), and Russia. These powers could ease the pain of inflation, however instead are reaping huge profits and not spending towards creating a more stable market in which prices for other goods could ease. This pressure will be undone as Pluto departs the return and departs Capricorn for Aquarius within the next two years. It will ultimately be up to the American voters to decide what their values are in the 2024 election after which these giant aspects diminish. They will vote based on their values to complete the transit of Neptune opposing the US natal Neptune.
The purpose of Pluto stirring up corporate conspiracies and exposing corruption in governments isn’t to make them become virtuous. Their purpose is to provide on an individual level the opportunity to examine and then act on what we believe in, to provide us and our electorate the opportunity to manifest their beliefs. Pluto can set up and expose corruption; it can create then undermine it.
The individual and national or collective will to establish values and then act on them is why we need to go through these stressful events. We have to prove what we say. The need to revisit and examine values is work that is never done. Since Pluto for example will move on into Aquarius doesn’t mean it leaves the government or political leaders it exposed as corrupt or corporations cheating, all neat and tidy, all repaired. It just means that the recent cycles of transits - which span decades and generations - are complete, and the next round of rebuilding will in time come due for another generation. We will do it all again probably, for other souls who need to face the same kind of decisions. This is a major overhaul questioning the founding principles of the US; it’s the first Pluto return in its history. Finding out that some things don’t work means we have to rewrite the rules. We definitely learned in the last five years that there are those who will operate outside the old established rules because they were not encoded law. But we probably need to face a crisis of dysfunction before some people will believe it.
Transiting Neptune opposite natal Neptune from Pisces to Virgo requires a brief bit of reflection on Neptune in Virgo’s character and as it is located in the US chart, in the 9th house. In Virgo, Neptune encourages belief in efficiency, establishing a reliable realistic base of optimism, not unrealistic pie in the sky ideas that lack planning. Writing down the Declaration of Independence and holding it up as something to follow for centuries is a Virgo kind of thing. With Virgo, on a soul level, is the acceptance that naivete is no excuse for failure. We have to begin to make concessions to the universe outside our personal bubble, finding the workable balance that is expected by the next sign, Libra. Virgo is the last sign of the first half of the zodiac where we begin to integrate more with everyone and everything else. The impetus that begins in Aries which was to have it our way acknowledges in steps sign by sign until in Virgo we arrive ready to lower the gate around our ego. This is the reality of the zodiacal virgin. She sacrifices some of her Self and in return the universe cultivates Itself within us.
In the 9th house is the possibility of noble well-informed intent with a religious sense of purpose, just as there is the possibility that these values are a load of croc. The problem in the 9th house is because we consider the belief to be sacred, we resist it ever evolving.
The burst of energy represented by the birth chart of the USA continues to be the chart of the lives being lived on this land at the moment, but it’s a very different set of circumstances. There is unfortunately a tremendous amount of tragic karma yet to be resolved that this country was built on. One of the things that helps to do that is recognition of the common interests of everyone living in it now to fulfill a shared variously defined idealism we agree to, and one of the realities of that is an economy that offers opportunities for its participants.
It’s a question of belief, not necessarily of reality.
Neptune thinks everything is real, it doesn’t separate fact from fiction. We have to sort it out and integrate what works down here on Earth because Neptune is far sighted and can’t see things individually up close isolated from each other. The expanse of Neptune’s perception is other worldly. It’s a valuable perspective to retain because we realize how silly some of our close-up obsessions are. But we live here on Earth to iron out some of the details, not spread ourselves thin across the seas of Neptune.
Neptune in transit opposing it’s US natal placement says hold on a minute, are we the majority in agreement of what we believe our valued goal to be? This is a period of confusion because not everyone agrees on what national value or ideals are, or what is fact or fiction. People don’t recognize how Neptune works or works in their lives because it is subtle, its impact seems vague. Neptune accepts everything one believes as fact, which is why people don’t recognize Neptune. It’s too obvious. Belief defines Neptune’s reality and we act on whatever it is.
The opposition from transiting Neptune in Pisces most of all dissolves the definitions of what is a valid belief or not valid. Belief was never fact; it was always a guess highly dependent on wishful thinking.
If we recognize that Neptune is a formless watery ocean that takes on whatever shape we pour it into, we also have to recognize that what we believe is going to look different depending on who’s looking at it. In that case we had better develop a common understanding of what we are looking at. Go from there. Up to now we had written and unwritten laws about what was a common national goal and standards of ethical behavior. But Neptune says, wait a minute, what happens when I remove that common belief? What happens when the doors swing open and anything goes? That’s about where we’re at.
The other more dramatic astrological event unfolding is...
...Mars in transit catching up to Uranus, in Taurus. The Moon’s North Nodes, which are moving retrograde as they often do, will back up and meet Mars as it arrives to meet Uranus later in July, together into August.
Uranus moved into the earth sign Taurus a few years ago. As I and others have commented, Taurus, a literally down to earth grounded energy, is not a great place for Uranus. Uranus was the ancient sky god, not grounded, represented in the Tarot deck as the lightning bolt that knocked down the Tower of Babel. Uranus is the iconic ruler of the new age sign Aquarius, and was the first planet discovered because of the use of new technology at the time, the telescope. It wants unrestricted movement. Taurus is all about nailing things down, securing all the hatches, no loose ends. The combination of these two is that the potential energy of the Uranian lightning bolt is held in chains until something provokes a moment of release. At that time, potentially long held pent up energy is released. The release can be as a one-time thing or a series of expressions over the period of the provocation. In this instance Mars is the catalyst. Mars is also not at its best in Taurus; it also does not like being contained. Mars tends to react with a careless impatience when restrained. This is a combination suited well to any kind of breaking out of restraint: breakthrough, eruption, breakdown, angry outburst, crash, breaking the rules without concern for the consequences good or bad, pushing through adversity, winning at all costs, frustration, earthquake, explosion.
If one has the ability to let this energy be expressed with discipline it can be used very constructively to achieve something long sought for, but this is no easy task. It’s drinking water from a fire hose.
The North Nodes add a little dimension to the events. They tell us that this is a hurdle that collectively and individually we have faced before and this time we have to make the step that’s been hard to do if we want to move forward in a healthy way. It’s an opportunity.
When late July comes around, and into early August, watch carefully not to lose your temper and if challenged to put the energy into finding resolution. Don’t throw something at the TV or break the Ming vase, although that would be better than taking it out on someone else or hurting yourself. Exercise but don’t try and set a record, unless you are a professional athlete in a competition. In that case you might win.
David A. Wheatley has been a Fine Artist/painter since first exhibiting in Soho, New York during the 1970’s. David developed other talents first as a tarot reader then extending into astrological theory, a practice which lead to the development of ideas in his book, 2012 Before and After. Working occasionally as a full time tarot and astrological counselor, David grew familiar with many other related disciplines through the years that add great dimension to astrological traditions, including psychological perspectives and the development of quantum physics. David currently resides in Florida.
Contact David Wheatley at firstname.lastname@example.org for a personal astrological consultation
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