Shortly before we reach the Autumn Equinox on September 22, the Moon will reach its full phase in Pisces on September 20 at 4:54 p. m. on the U.S. West Coast.
The water element is highlighted at this time. The Moon itself is of a watery nature, and Pisces is our mutable water sign. Whereas Cancer is water like a moving river, and Scorpio is water like a deep, dark lagoon, Pisces water is like the vast waves of the oceans, from which much of life evolved. This Full Moon at 28 degrees of Pisces will be conjoined with Neptune, the outer planet that is also Moon-like in its associations with oceans and dreams.
With the Full Moon in Pisces, the Sun is still in Virgo. This is the Harvest Moon, with the groundedness of the earth element to balance the ethereal nature of the Moon-Neptune conjunction. By the light of a Full Moon, there’s an invitation to see things clearly, and also to let things go, in sync with the waning phase of the Moon growing darker for the next two weeks.
At each moment in time, the planets are moving at different speeds and even—from our point of view—in different directions, with some in their retrograde period. Mercury will enter one of its thrice yearly retrograde periods on September 27, until October 17.
“Astrology is a language,” wrote the great 20th century astrologer Dane Rudhyar. “If you understand the language, the Sky speaks to you.” This language of astrology is metaphorical, its messages carrying multiple possible meanings. It is a language, and it also carries us beyond language, like a poem or a mantra.
The sky speaks through aspects, the planets talking to each other through their angular relationships, ever moving and shifting. When we cast a chart for any moment in time, we see many prominent aspects, affecting each of us a little differently.
At this Full Moon, Venus—the planet having to do with relationships—will be making its way toward an opposition with Uranus, the lightning bolt. Venus is about who and what we’re attracted to, which includes how we seek comfort. Uranus shakes things up. Their coming face-to-face for a while suggests possible upheavals in our comfort zones, highlighting things we like and dislike.
This is amplified by the fact that Venus, right now, is in the sign of Scorpio, a challenging place for Venus to visit, as Scorpionic energy is darkly edgy. Scorpio is one of Mars’ home signs. But Mars right now is in Libra, one of Venus’ home signs. This is called mutual reception, when two planets are in each other’s signs, meaning they can help each other, even when they’re in a place of discomfort.
Mars and Venus are called “personal planets.” They travel close to the Sun, and their transits may affect us very individually. They have different functions: Venus seeks connections, while Mars is about action, even aggression. Scorpio wants to dive deep and find out “why.” Libra wants to make nice. Thus, the whole realm of relationships may feel fraught right now. But Libra and Scorpio, very different in their qualities, are adjacent signs, like two old pals who know and complement each other.
Speaking of Libra at this Full Moon, Mercury, the Messenger, is there, and forming a nearly exact trine (120-degree aspect) with expansive Jupiter, which has been spending this year in humanitarian Aquarius. Trines occur when planets are in signs of the same element. They’re talking to each other with ease.
At this Full Moon, there might be some good news on the horizon. We might recognize some opportunities for research, writing, or making plans for the future.
On September 22, the Sun ingresses into Libra, marking the fall equinox in the northern hemisphere. This is the balance point, when day and night are of equal duration. From now on, the light will begin to wane, turning our focus more toward inward concerns, as we make our way toward the darkest time of the year.
Blessings for the Full Moon in Pisces!