November Full Moon Astrology: the Gemini/Sagittarius axis and Saturn square Neptune
The sun entered Sagittarius on Monday ushering in the transition of autumn to winter. In the Western hemisphere this is the time that we tend to move closer together and into internal spaces of both the physical and personal variety. This season has a condensing, contracting quality and instinctually we seek the warmth of others as well as a sense of meaningfulness and purpose; we need reasons to continue into the cold darkness. Sagittarius is the spirit of the seeker and asks us to embody our deepest desires to know, to believe, and to seek answers. In Sagittarius we are interested in all things foreign and ‘other’. Travel to distant horizons is compelling and if we don’t find ways to travel across the globe, we will find ways to travel across the landscape of mind. Therefore Sagittarius rules all approaches to higher knowledge including academic study, philosophical pondering and religious inquiry. Sagittarius is also the keeper of belief. Belief and faith can be wonderful things when they provide internal warmth in a dark, cold world, but when they become solidified and dogmatic they become weapons. Therefore Sagittarius’ arrow can be pointed towards an ever-deepening inquiry of self-study OR can be pointed at any opposing belief.
Today’s full moon (exact at 2:44PM Pacific time) occurs at 3° Gemini along the Gemini/Sagittarius axis. Gemini, the opposite sign of Sagittarius is more concerned with immediate information than esoteric knowledge. Gemini is interested in the close-in environment and who’s around right here, right now. Both signs imply the process of knowing, the concept of knowledge, and the functions of mind. Gemini’s mind is quick, curious and somewhat unstable as it jumps from one thing to the next and is easily distracted by the next interesting thing. Gemini is concerned with what is relevant and applicable in the here and now and therefore tends to seek out information, gossip, and connect with curiosity. The Gemini/Sagittarius axis is the process in which learning becomes knowing; it is the axis of meaning and the ways in which we ascribe meaning; it is the space where our mental perceptive function becomes the framework for our broader worldview.
The full moon is making a few significant aspects. First, Saturn is in close aspect to the sun and is bringing a sense of purpose to whatever it is that we’re feeling right now.
Let me pause for a second though and contextualize the word ‘feeling’ in relationship to the axis of mind (Gemini/Sagittarius) thoughts create emotional responses. Emotions create thoughts. We can think ourselves out of emotional processes but generally the emotion will still reside in the flesh. So physical sensations can create thought, and thought creates emotion which creates the physical, which is reality as we know it.
Saturn is reality. It is matter, it is dense, it is substantive. Saturn is the hard dose of reality that puts our beliefs to the test. Saturn conjunct the sun is a realization of consciousness and desire to manifest one’s beliefs (Sagittarius) on Earth.
Saturn is currently forming a square with Neptune. This aspect has been forming the past number of months but will reach its first exact angle tomorrow. This aspect continues for the next ten months. You could consider Neptune and Saturn as opposites. Saturn wants to materialize and Neptune wants to dissolve. Saturn wants to build and claim individual authority, Neptune doesn’t even bother because it realizes that individual identity is temporary and ephemeral. Neptune wants to dream, make art, connect to the most expansive love, and transcend the Earthly plane. Neptune when it’s looking healthy is artistic vision, creativity, inspiration, a level of attunement that we might call psychic, and deep abiding love. Neptune in its more destructive side is addiction, entanglement, needy co-dependency, loss of boundaries, loss of self, loss of reality.
When considering this square it’s also important to remember that any aspect between two planets is also just a moment in their orbital relationship. This aspect is what is known as a ‘waning square’ meaning that Saturn is 90° (from our vantage point on Earth) from being conjunct (in the same place) Neptune and is moving towards that conjunction. The last time these two planets were together was in 1988/89. Because the current cycle is a closing cycle it asks us to look back and see where we have come from. At the waning square we are faced with the choice to either let go of ways of being that no longer serve and that have been outgrown, or to grasp tightly to what is known: to legacy and to fundamentalism… The current Saturn/Neptune cycle began with the collapse of the Berlin wall and dissolution of the Soviet Union, the abolition of apartheid in South Africa, Chinese democratic protests and the Tiananmen Square Massacre, the founding of Hamas and new drive to achieve an independent Palestinian state and the First Intifada or original Palestinian uprising against the Israeli occupation.
If we go beyond the personal and take a look at Saturn and Neptune from a global or societal level, Saturn, as “reality”, represents established institutions and traditions, regulations, and the laws that control and govern societies. Neptune presents as spirituality, escapism, dreams, delusions, idealism, propaganda and paranoia. The themes we are looking at today are conflict between these two planets. A waning square in some ways is a last call. The question is, “Did you get the point?” Saturn can, ideally, be a grounding force for Neptune’s vision and define practical, structured progress towards achieving it. Neptune can, ideally, inspire reality and help us remember oneness, compassion, and the importance of dream and mystery. This square offers a chance to work hard for beliefs and allow the similarities between spiritual traditions and desires to blow open our tiny sense of a separate self, or this can manifest as fanaticism and the kind of brutal violence and oppression made in the name of religion that we see everywhere.
Back to the full moon.
The Sun is in Sagittarius conjunct Saturn. The Moon is in Gemini. Both the Moon and the Sun (and Saturn) are square to Neptune. This particular type of aspect puts the emphasis on Neptune as a pivot point for the opposition of the Sun/Saturn and Moon. The final piece is Mars in Libra making a helpful aspect to the opposition and an uncomfortable aspect to Neptune. So here’s the gist of this full moon:
- We are not separate. As much as we think, feel, and actually experience ourselves as independent and separate entities, the truth is that we are completely interdependent and therefore affected by everything else.
- Notions of oneness and connectivity get f*cked up and creepy when they are used to discount, gloss-over, or homogenize the very real, and different experiences of individuals.
- therefore it is crucial that we bend our minds enough to accommodate and appreciate individuals and difference of experience, while also not polarizing, separating or forgetting that we all, ultimately, have the same basic needs.
- Global change will be achieved as individuals change. Because we are one. Because we each hold a part in oneness. Each of us is charged with personal responsibility.
- The themes for right now that we are all affected by and can work towards are: respect of difference in beliefs; remembering the sacredness of life and choosing to see the profound organization and wholeness of nature; claiming personal power and agency from a connection to nature and the spirits of our understanding rather than rank based on personal or cultural identity; using our personal power to advocate for peace, tolerance, and the ideals we feel when we take time to connect.
This full moon and the Saturn/Neptune cycle physically reside in all of us and will have effect in our bodies. The Gemini/Sagittarius aspect influences how we feel our stability and therefore are able to offer and gesture. The Moon, Sun, Saturn, Neptune and Mars have correlation to vital functions and glandular balance.
Full moon blessings and love Renée