Michael Barwick


Insight for Every Purpose under Heaven

Happy Birthday Pisces!

Congratulations! This year the transiting Sun entered the tropical sign of Pisces on February 18 at 6:03 pm EST. If you’re a Pisces, your birthday is happening over the the next month! Birthday greetings to you and all the best for you over the next year.

Birthday Sale for Sun-Sign Pisces People Only!

During the time when the Sun is in Pisces (now until March 20), my All About You reading (what I recommend for new clients) and my Time of Your Life reading (what I first recommend for returning clients) are available for $120 CDN, which is a third off the regular fee: a savings of $60! To book, or for more information, contact me.

About Pisces… and being one

With Pisces, we come to the sign often pictured as two fish swimming in different directions, yet forever bound together. This is a paradoxical image and Pisces is a paradoxical sign.

Pisces is confronted with a number of existential dualities with which it must contend:

  • As the final sign of the zodiac, there is a weariness of having seen it all yet at the same time, it is coupled with an awareness that something hopeful and new is just around the corner.
  • Pisces empathizes with the world as it is, for it is typically easy for the sign to feel the suffering of others, yet simultaneously, the sign has a definite sense of what the world ought to be.
  • A lot of the astrological literature talks about Pisces and its need to escape the world via mood shifters of various kinds (stereotypically alcohol and drugs), but it is also a sign that often has a vision for engaging it too and making it a better place.
  • As the mutable water sign, Pisces understands the extremes of the brightest and darkest faces of feelings and how their sensitivity can equally be used to help others or to exploit them.

What seems best for Pisces is to have some kind of mission to rescue what still can be rescued before the opportunity is washed away. This mission, in the form of a dream, ideal or cause, can be their contribution to the world for reclaiming what has been, or is about to be, lost.

Regardless of one’s opinion about the existence of the divine, humans have a long history of attempting to make sense of an understanding that our reality that appears made of very separate things is nevertheless somehow one as well. The word “universe” is rooted in the notion of everything “combined into one whole” or more literally “one (uni) turning (verse).”

Whereas the previous sign Aquarius seeks its identity within the intellectual dynamics of its social group (or at its highest, humanity as a whole), Pisces goes one step further and seeks its identity by bonding somehow to all-that-is, however one chooses to understand or label it. This is inevitably paradoxical because it means for people born with the Sun in Pisces because, to find yourself, it must lose yourself to something beyond yourself.

When comparing Aquarius to Pisces, it is noteworthy that the key phrase for Aquarius “I know” gives way to a the more evolved Pisces key phrase: “I believe.” What astrology suggests by this is perhaps that what is most important at the end is not something that can be intellectually grasped, but rather a relationship to the totality of everything. Such a relationship mystics tell us can be experienced, appreciated and nurtured, but never fully understood because what you are connected to is that vast. How much can any fish grasp an understanding of the totality of the ocean?

Pisces Considerations 2019

Making individual predictions for an entire year based on a single factor in a person’s horoscope is never entirely satisfactory because every person’s horoscope includes multiple factors and is distinct, guaranteeing that all things are never equal for all persons born under the same sign.

Here are some useful things to consider for the next year if you are a Pisces:

First, the planet Neptune is currently in the middle of your sign

Understanding Neptune’s symbolic meaning is difficult because the nature of the symbol itself resists definition. It is cloud-like and associated with deception, confusion, illusion and delusion, but also the deepest spiritual realizations related to compassion, empathy, and even accessing the divine ground of being itself through spiritual practices. Neptune is undoubtedly extreme: it can accompany the greatest con job or the realization of the divine truths underpinning the physical world around us.

When Neptune contacts your Sun in Pisces, it undermines whatever the status quo has been in terms of solar affairs such as:

  • Men in general
    (Note: the Sun is classically considered masculine in comparison the the Moon, which is considered feminine. Because of our more fluid times regarding gender roles, whether this distinction is still accurate is controversial in the field.)
  • Fathers/father figures/fathering
    (Note: Again, classically Sun is a symbol for father and Moon is a symbol for mother, but these designations are not universally held to be true by all astrologers.)
  • Your boss
  • Your profession
  • Your personal identity
  • Your individual will
  • Your drive for autonomy and independence
  • Your sense of purpose and future aspirations.

This undermining can be felt to be highly inconvenient, because the Sun, even in Pisces, is doing its best to be an effective personal agent for developing into an individual. Neptune is a slow-moving collective planet that doesn’t care about effectiveness or most personal concerns for that matter; it prefers you float free, navel gaze and transcend.

At the beginning, feelings of profound disappointment, or grief from losses long past, can re-surface when Neptune comes to call. Equally possible are feelings of deep yearning or divine discontent for a lover’s touch or a connection with a spiritual teacher or tradition. Or a new job or career. It’s a deliciously painful kind of pining that Neptune accompanies. In a way, it doesn’t matter what the glamorized thing is should one appear.

The way through is to get past what you are yearning for so that by the end of Neptune’s time with you, you have fully transcended it: you could have whatever it is or not and be okay with life.

However, if there are feelings of grief and sadness that surface, you need to find a good place to cry them out.

Culturally, the West is uncomfortable with grief and the pressure is always to “get over it.” Consider the following charming excerpt from the Eagles’ song of the same name:

…It’s like going to confession every time I hear you speak
You’re makin’ the most of your losin’ streak
Some call it sick, but I call it weak
You drag it around like a ball and chain
You wallow in the guilt; you wallow in the pain
You wave it like a flag, you wear it like a crown
Got your mind in the gutter, bringin’ everybody down
Complain about the present and blame it on the past
I’d like to find your inner child and kick its little ass
Get over it
Get over it
All this bitchin’ and moanin’ and pitchin’ a fit
Get over it, get over it…

This song returned the Eagles to the American Top 40 after a 14 year absence in 1994.

The result of this ignorant and common attitude is that almost everyone has a reservoir of unprocessed grief because they are pushed to act as if they’ve handled it when really they’ve repressed it. Times when Neptune is active in your life are ideal for processing grief. Tears shed at this time can baptize one into emotional renewal and new life.

To say that Neptune only reflects unfortunate conditions however would only be telling half the story. Neptune can reflect deep inspiration as well; although how much action can be taken – or even should be taken – regarding whatever vision comes is questionable. You need to be patient and sit with it.

In such a case, encountering Neptune is like taking a bath. The water starts out hot, and the experience is very pleasurable. Neptune supports unplugging so you can hear the smallest voices inside and participate even in their wordless wisdom. Nevertheless, eventually, the water cools and the time comes to get out, now refreshed, renewed and carrying something of the experience back into the outer world who so needs peace.

Neptune first entered Pisces in 2011 and will leave in 2026. Pisceans born in the first half of the sign have seen this influence and may still be processing it, as the experiences coinciding with slow-moving Neptune are long lasting. Those born in the second half of the sign have yet to experience it, but the scent is in the air. If you were born in the middle, you’re in it now.

Secondly, Jupiter in Sagittarius is squaring Neptune in Pisces

This aspect may coincide with Pisceans are feeling pulled into opposite directions even more than usual. Jupiter is the planet traditionally said to rule Pisces, although some astrologers feel that Neptune (discovered in 1846) should co-rule the sign, or even supplant Jupiter as the sign’s ruler, based on the perception that Neptune is so similar to Pisces.

Regardless, the fact is that they are having a profound disagreement and it may coincide with Pisceans feeling these kinds of struggles:

  • Vision vs. confusion
  • Ideology vs. compassion
  • Enthusiasm vs. disappointment
  • Understanding vs. mystery

Both planets seem to encourage spiritual pursuits of all kinds; given the nature of the connection of the planets though, expect that it will require effort to put spiritual experiences that occur into a context you can understand.

You can read more about this influence, including its 2019 key dates, here.

Thirdly, Saturn in Capricorn is sextiling Neptune in Pisces

I will not repeat what I have already written about 2019’s contribution to the current Saturn-Pluto theme; however, a part of it that I have not discussed is that transiting Saturn in Capricorn is connecting three times with Neptune, which Pisceans might find helpful to know.

Saturn is the planet most antithetical to Neptune, because it symbolizes the concrete, the specific, and by necessity, the limited.

It is worthy of note that Neptune was originally observed by Galileo through his telescope when it was conjoining Jupiter, but he didn’t recognize Neptune as a planet at the time.

However, when Neptune was discovered, it was conjoining Saturn. And when Saturn conjoined Neptune in the summer of 1989 many cycles later, the celestial event happened to coincide with the Voyager 2 NASA space probe fly-by from which we gained the famous photo of blue Neptune with its own stormy blue spot.

I believe that what this all suggests is that there is an opportunity to capture something of the elusive undefined magic yearning Neptune represents into hard consensus reality. With the help of Saturn, Neptune can be precipitated out of the formless and into form.

However, it is important to recognize that the Saturn-Neptune sextile for all its promise to manifest a dream is a weaker connection that the Jupiter-Neptune square discussed above, which is so inclined to run away with itself.

Making use of the sextile will require restraint, discipline to make it into something that will count.

Key Dates for this theme include:

  • January 31, 2019 – first exact pass
  • June 18, 2019 – second exact pass
  • November 8, 2019 – last exact pass

You can learn more about Pisces here.