Moon Neptune – seeking a love made in heaven

Oceanic Neptune, lord of the boundaryless, ever-changing seas, in hard aspect to the sensitive Moon goes along with a dreamy, imaginative, idealistic and devoted temperament. A yearning for a blissful, seamless connection in relationships induces a tendency to see the best in others and ignore distressing or potentially hurtful realities. Love through a soft-focus lens.

  The characteristic of airbrushing out faults paradoxically goes hand in hand with an openness to undercurrents in the atmosphere and an unwitting psychic ability to tune into and absorb others’ thoughts and feelings – often with an inability to distinguish what is ‘them’ and what is personal. Learning discernment – sorting out fact from fantasy and even more crucially developing healthy boundaries is vital to maintain autonomy and independence.

  Where it stems from is a mother who is unable to maintain her own boundaries so the child does not learn to separate ‘me from thee’ as it develops. In the womb and just after, mother and child are one. But part of the process of healthy development is to build a separate identity in slow stages as the baby turns into a toddler and then a child, pulling away from the initial stage of ecstatic oneness. Or not so ecstatic if the emerging baby is subject to the storms and hurricane’s of mother’s mood swings.

  The Moon Neptune type is denied the chance of building robust emotional defences and so is at risk of being overwhelmed by outside influences and other people’s woes and concerns. They lack a tough emotional skin and get easily upset if criticised or rejected. Their need is unconditional love, in giving and receiving, yet they often hold back from commitment since they lack trust in their own judgement and in the less-than-divine partners they come across. Some individuals shut down emotional connections altogether since the world and other people are felt as too threatening.

  Others can give themselves away in a close relationship – dissolving their identity is the price they pay for merging and identifying with their partner and in process they can allow themselves to become victimized.

  While their hypersensitivity does have a serious downside of dependency, self-pity, irresponsibility, escapism, irrational fears and an avoidance of anything unpleasant it also goes along with an intuitive talent for sensing other’s pain which handled well can be of great help.

  Picking famous examples of Moon Neptune is tricky since it is a nebulous trait and one which can have vastly differing outcomes. But one thing jumped out which were individuals who were famous for being in a twosome – Queen Consort Camilla, Brigitte Macron, Yoko Ono – all strong women but ones who are irrevocably tied to a partner. Also Will Smith and Kanye West who always spring to mind attached to AN other.

  Escapist drug problems are another strand with Amy Winehouse, Robert Downey Jnr and the late River Phoenix, who had a hippie Children of God cult mother.

  And the forlorn Marilyn Monroe, who was constantly seeking a stable mother having grown up fostered out and her mother ultimately being diagnosed as a schizophrenic. Not all of which can be attributed to her Moon opposition Neptune but it would play a part.

  Off-the-Richter scale of the negative end of the Neptunian spectrum, which does seem wider than most of the outer planets, is John Gacy, the American serial killer and sex offender who raped, tortured, and murdered at least 33 young men and boys. He regularly performed at children’s hospitals as “Pogo the Clown” and became known as the Killer Clown.

  He had a Sun Moon Pisces conjunction opposition Neptune. When astrologers were later given his chart as a test without his name attached, they described him as the soul of compassion and goodness. Which just goes to show how Neptune has even managed to airbrush its own reputation. It can be cosmically chilling and unempathic – so spaced out it doesn’t relate to humanness at all.  

   Gacy was close to his mother and two sisters, but endured a difficult relationship with his father, a physically abusive alcoholic who belittled him, calling him “dumb and stupid” and comparing him unfavorably with his sisters.  

30 thoughts on “Moon Neptune – seeking a love made in heaven

  1. With Neptune squaring my moon (orb 4degs), I have battled my earthy, depressing, pessimistic, limited Cap moon mother throughout life. What she wanted ruled the house, my father enabled her, us children followed. She didn’t enjoy motherhood and preferred to work (in a time when women didn’t work). She could never express her feelings, or feel an ounce and therefore I grew up knowing nothing of my own feelings or empathy for the pain of others. I would be dismissive of their problems or imitating my mothers Cap moon by solutionising. It is funny how people can live through a ton of pain of one sort, yet run at the first hint of another type. I don’t want to purely blame her as there are lots of other reasons within my own chart for all this.

    My relationships were hamstrung by fear of others who wanted to love where I’d never experience it. Any flicker of hint of real intimacy was too much. And yet, somehow that Neptune square moon plays out the tension – you know there is something more to pursue, so you won’t settle for something shallow and bland. Consequently I went for emotionally dead women who were superficially happy and fun.

    Generally speaking, the last couple of years I have realised Neptune causes me to immerse myself in people and things. I can get fascinated in something and go off down the rabbithole wanting to find out everything about it. Plutonians obsess for control, Neptunians immerse to experience.

      • Not a professional but first took a beginner’s course in 1993, read a few books and website over the next decade then really began to dig into it in 2008. That coincides with Pluto moving into my 9th – deepening of my knowledge and understanding of many things, particularly in the philosophical realms, and learning through personal experience.

  2. Engagement with astrology enabled me to start feeling some sense of intactness. The first astrologer I saw in my early 40’s, said – amongst other things – that I likely didn’t know who I was. I knew i didn’t have a clue. I learned the basics of how to read a chart – my own mostly -, purchased a moon calendar and proceeded to follow the moon round and round my chart. It gave me a sense of me-ness. I have a Capricorn Sun in the 4th (or the 10th? because I moved to the other side of the world at 9 months). It opposes Moon/Saturn in Cancer then t square to Neptune, Chiron, Jupiter in the first (or 7th?). Apart from Jupiter most of the orbs are quite close. The Sun is also at the point of a Yod with Neptune and Pluto sextile at the base. I had lots of skills but also dropped into depressions when I was scared and totally inadequate. Alcohol was not an issue apart from my Dad’s drinking in the earlier years after the war. Mum had gone through the War in Coventry. She was a War Bride and struggled being away from family and friends on the other side of the world. I also worked in psychiatry/mental health as an occupational therapist. i had no difficulty understanding people but had to learn how to develop personal boundaries. Had to learn a lot really. Brought up Christian but much more grounded as a kind of pagan – astrology took me into a much broader more natural world crammed with everyones’ mythologies and realities. I’m now very happy nearly 78 year- old. whew!

  3. When tr Neptune squared my natal Moon about 15 years ago my world fell apart and I felt utterly abandoned, although they are not connected in my chart.

  4. Moon, my chart ruler and most elevated planet in my chart in Gemini, in the eleventh is in a tight trine to Neptune in Libra in the third, in a close angular position conjunct my IC. I’ve always found this aspect extremely helpful, as I’ve been able to express it through my interest in spiritual development and through my work as an artist and art therapist. It has helped me to counteract the difficulty I had with my Moon conjunct Uranus and Mars, which expressed as an itinerant childhood spent as a refugee in various Far Eastern countries and with a suicidal but loving mother. All these planets and points are in Air signs, which has helped me to eventually perceive my childhood with a degree of detachment. My relationship with my father was more challenging as described by my Mars and Saturn opposed by the Sun, all in hard aspects to Chiron. Thank you Margery for this very educational series of posts!

  5. Moon in Virgo square Neptune in Sagittarius here. This placement was very difficult to deal with up until the age of 40 or so. My mother has NPD and probably additional mood disorders. I struggled with strong and persistent emotional confusion for decades. Relationships were generally disastrous and alcohol was ever present. I got sober in my early 30s and the healing from this placement just snowballed. Quitting alcohol was the single best decision I have ever made. I am extremely sensitive to animal suffering and abuse of children and the elderly. I have Mars in Scorpio and therefore never hesitate to raise Hell if I see or suspect abuse. I have made enemies of the abusers and the more complacent types who default to fearing the abusers. Not I.

    Also, learning boundaries and understanding what my own wellness looks like & valuing my own wellness, completely transformed my relationships with others. I never knew life could be this good, truly.

    • Hi Brigitte,

      Thanks for sharing your story with this placement. I don’t have it myself, but have a few friends with challenging Moon/Neptune and alcohol seems to be a big obstacle for them in dealing with the stresses of life. I am curious to hear what the catalyst for stopping drinking was, if you might share? Did it also coincide with any particular transit? (And let us all be as sensitive to the suffering of the vulnerable as you are, what a different world we would be living in).

      • Hi,

        The catalyst for me ceasing to drink was the death of my father. He primarily raised me and my brother and I had no room for error after he passed. I knew I was destined to live a life I was proud of, so enough was enough. My father somewhat padded the emotional consequences of my drinking when he was alive. I believe Anthony Bourdain had moon in hard aspect to Neptune and similarly with him, it was a sense of vanity that got him to stop the substance abuse and finallyget to producing his creative work at the age of 40!

        I will add that I have exploded creatively like I have always dreamed of (at 43) this past year when Uranus in my 4th house began trining my moon in the 8th. Lots of new & deep awareness of healing family lineage trauma as well as deep and wildly fantastic creative work inspired by my ancestry. This transit has been a hoot!

        I put down VERY firm boundaries with my biological mother when Uranus was exactly conjunct my natal Chiron in the 4th a year and a half ago. I learned very important tactics and behaviors for disengaging people with NPD and other personality disorders. In the past, I allowed them to wreak havoc. Timing is everything. Don’t give up.

      • And thank-you. My sensitivity to the vulnerable was quite the burden when I was younger but I learned to act in constructive ways & to learn when I could help and when I couldn’t.

    • I have the conjunction in the third, also conjunct Mars and Mercury. My brother’s alcoholism caused his death in his mid 40s. Also my father’s drinking became worse when he retired. My brother was a social drinker, my father a secret one. Even before my father retired, as teenagers we would find glasses and bottles hidden all over the house and in the outbuildings. Alcoholism played a part in my father’s death too – he developed ARBD (alcohol related brain damage), had a stroke and became paralysed from the chest down. I remember at the time, thinking of that phrase to describe inebriation – ‘paralytic’. I’ve never had a drink problem myself.

      • Just like to add – like me, my brother had Moon/Neptune in Scorpio, my father had Moon/Neptune in Leo, my sister has the opposition as has my paternal cousin.

          • That’s interesting – as a child I could occupy myself for hours, reading, drawing, making things, writing little stories and illustrating them. I danced, loved music and was an imaginative child, so yes, my Moon/Neptune was lived out with the help of active Mars. Also, having Pluto rising means I don’t like the idea of losing control of my body or mind. I like a glass of wine – but I’ll just have one!

          • @Virgoflake, makes total sense. And your conjunctions occupying 3rd house gives them Gemini flavouring , ruler of the nervous system, inc. hands but also words. I think you are a great example of how to turn a potential negative into the positive it can be. That Pluto rising was there to assist in its way.

          • @VF … you sound like your neptune-moon played out similarly to me. You immersed yourself in creative activities that nourished your soul. As I wrote above, I have done similar; I never understood the fascination others had with partying or drinking. It’s only in recent years, I’ve come to realise it’s because my activities were enough for me, and that when as a twenty-something I felt different and outcast for not enjoying drinking/partying, I was actually on a much better path than my contemporaries.

            My mother was/is a workaholic. It’s only in recent years, I’ve come to realise it. It was clever wrapped up in the socially acceptable/uncriticisable of having a part-time job and constantly cooking/cleaning/washing around the house. But, back in the old days before Sunday shopping, it was notable she would cook the Sunday roast and drink most of a bottle of wine through the afternoon. I was allowed to have a glass from a younger age (around 11 onwards) – rationalised as enlightened parenting but now I’m more sceptical and believe it was more about her not wanting to drink the whole bottle. I barely ever saw my dad have a drink – the co-dependency of enablers for you !!

          • Jennifer and GD, thanks and appreciation for your replies. GD, I was 3 when first introduced to alcohol. My father thought it was amusing to see a drunk child. I remember being sick after my father plied me with claret one Christmas and my grandmother was furious with him. With little boundaries growing up, I’ve struggled to set them in adulthood.

            Like you, GD I’m not a party person. Perhaps Neptune’s association with the 12th house means that there can be comfort and safety in retreat from the madding crowd.

  6. I have Moon opposite Neptune, Neptune conjunct the Midheaven. My mother was borderline personality disordered; extremely abusive, with a father who wasn’t much better. You have described this accurately, Marjorie. It has taken me decades of therapy to heal myself. One astrologer told me my life goal was to discover my self-worth, and that was on point.

    • Ha!!… Similarly, my Moon is opp. Neptune with Neptune tight on the MC. Also a BP Monther!!

      This is so apropos as I am untangling myself from 2 complicated relationships with women. They were each profoundly important mentors to me, but I also “served” them. It was my wonderful husband (yeah.. I DID find a good love eventually!) who woke me up to the reality of these relationships. I would do anything for these 2 women!

      As I sort this out, the work has been to clearly see MY part in this… my Neptunian way of being what THEY wanted.. to the extreme…. in order to soothe my own needs.

      As you mentioned, Marjorie, this is also a terrific astrological connection, too. This has been such a gift in my work in health care. Here, the boundaries have been more clear and so the up side of this Moon/Neptune aspect can shine.

  7. Much of Jung’s income was earned from the publication of his various writings.
    (Pisces on the cusp, while its ruler, Neptune, is placed in the 3rd House of writings.
    Moon-Neptune square the Sun shows the necessity to associate with emotionally disturbed
    people, but additional income was earned when the latter became his patients (7th H).

  8. “Picking famous examples of Moon Neptune is tricky since it is a nebulous trait and one which can have vastly differing outcomes.” Ever slippery Neptune!

    Something that sprang to mind when I read this fascinating post was John Coltrane, great saxophonist, and his famous album ‘A Love Supreme’. That lyrical, emotional music sprang from his spiritual and musical faith in God, which he ‘found’ when he recovered from addictions to heroin and alcohol. All rather Neptune, including the album’s title.

    The astrology is so descriptive I think – Coltrane, 23 September 1926, has natal Moon in Aries trine Neptune in Leo, with a Pisces ascendant. His natal Saturn is 22 Scorpio, opposing Mars at 19 Taurus.
    He recorded A Love Supreme on one day, 9th December 1964. That day transiting Jupiter in Taurus (17) was opposing Neptune and Venus at 18 Scorpio – a wave of emotion, love, and music washing over his natal Mars, and maybe softening his Saturn too.

    I do agree that Neptune is very hard to define sometimes. It’s easy to focus on the mystical, compassionate, elves and pixies stuff, as it is with the sign Pisces too. And we often ignore the ‘Magician’ side of Uranus as well, the ‘buried treasure’ of Pluto, the benefits of Saturn, and the way Jupiter can simply expand what’s there (like my waistline!) for good or ill, not always bringing luck and benefits.

    • Just wanted to add to Neptune, the Moon, and the collective manifestations and expressions of love and music.
      The Beatles’ ‘All You Need is Love’ began recording on 14 June, 1967 – the Summer of Love, as it is sometimes known. On 9th May, 1967, there’s an eclipse at 18 Taurus, opposing Neptune at 22 Scorpio. That summer also saw the release of Love is All Around, by the Troggs.

      ‘Love is All Around’ was recorded again by Wet Wet Wet, and released one day before an eclipse at 19 Taurus (10 May 1994), trine Neptune at 23 Capricorn. It stayed in the charts for an endless 15 weeks, as many of us will remember!

      • Jane, I love the way your brain works; how do you find these things? 😀 What a cool link with the eclipses.

        Yes I remember the endless 15 weeks (!), but despite that I think it’s one of the very few times that I prefered the cover. It’s funny, I have no idea what number one in the charts is right now, but in those days there was no escape from it.

        • Thank you Tara, that’s a lovely thing to say. I’m dyslexic, and suspect that explains the way my brain works! I couldn’t read until I was about 9, but remembered things I’d heard, or visualised them, to get by in lessons. I still spell things by looking at the shape of the word. Those strategies have stayed with me, and are useful when I’m tired or stressed and sometimes struggle to read as an adult. It’s resulted in a magpie brain, full of goodness knows what! I never know what will pop up. Mercury retro natally too. And Moon sextile Neptune.

          Much as I got sick of Love is All Around, I’d love a universal song like that to wash around us all now.

  9. I have this aspect natally and it has always, always landed me in trouble. Without it my life would have been so much easier. And yes, it does all stem from my relationship with my mother. Despite being a Virgo, I have always operated more like a Pisces throughout most of my life, with rejections and confrontations affecting me deeply and with my life basically being defined in terms of emotional chapters more than anything tangible or practical. It took a good while and a great deal of pain for me to discover my talent in artistic photography and the performing arts, but now – aided by the sextile to my Mars-Pluto conjunction – my Moon-Neptune conjunction is finally operating in a healthy, creative way.

    • Even now many decades after my mum’s death powerful Moon Neptune astro events affect me, often involving dreaming about my mother. This past full moon typifies the pattern. My natal moon is conjunct Neptune. Plus my mum was Pisces. This entire series has been an absolute masterclass for me as I’ve gained so much insight into my Moon and its connections to my natal Uranus and Mars. Thank you Marjorie.

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