Neptune is retrograde for another month, which is why the truth feels especially harsh


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To quote my lord and savior (Lizzo, obviously), “truth hurts.” But if you feel you’ve been enduring an extra-heavy dose of truth lately, feel free to side-eye Neptune for that. The planet rules over the sensitive, intuitive Pisces and is associated with the subconscious mind, spiritual realm, dreams, fantasies, and inspiration. That intel is especially important to note right now since the Neptune retrograde of 2019 has been in effect since June 21 and won’t go direct until November 27—nearly another month.

Before you get super worried, know that retrogrades don’t necessarily mean anything bad or menacing, despite the energy that many associate with them. That said, retrogrades do pump out different energy waves, so this long-lead Neptune retrograde that’s been in transit since the early days of summer may explain shifted feelings you’ve been noticing, says astrologer Carolyne Faulkner, author of Your Stars: An Empowering Guide for 2020. “It’s neither good or bad; it’s just different and more of a reflective than active vibe.” So, the first step to understanding the Neptune retrograde and expertly weathering its altered energy is to stay calm. It impacts us all differently, depending on our natal charts, but generally, it “presses a pause button on actualizing big-picture dreams so that they can be fine-tuned and asks that we return to our authentic paths,” Faulkner says.

“[Neptune retrograde] presses a pause button on actualizing big-picture dreams so that they can be fine-tuned and asks that we return to our authentic paths.” —astrologer Carolyne Faulkner

During the Neptune retrograde, you’re more likely to find yourself confronted with the realities of your dreams and fantasies. And since all planetary retrogrades present a worthy time to be reflective, honor the truths presented to you and take time to be introspective.

The Neptune retrograde of 2019 is a great time to lean in to spiritual practices as well, Faulkner says. “It’s also good for creativity in general, but may not enable us to ‘make stuff happen’ until the ideas are truly ready to birth.” The retrograde impacts us all, but she says those with strong Pisces and Virgo stamps in their chart—meaning those with planets or houses ruled by Pisces or Virgo—will feel it more intensely.

“Neptune is a slow-moving planet; it takes 164 years to orbit the sun,” Faulkner adds. “It moved into its home sign Pisces in 2012, which was the beginning of the big shift in consciousness.” Because of this, now is the time to “wake up to our interconnectedness and re-align with our true destiny and higher consciousness.” So, challenge yourself to see the bright side of this retrograde for the rest of the month, because opportunity for finding our authenticity and ideas that support it abounds.

Oh hey, if you were born during a Mercury retrograde, that’s could actually be a good thing. And if you’re wondering why astrology is Such A Thing right now, our editors break it down here. 

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