Feeling ready yet for sweater weather? Whether you prep for fall with cozy knitwear, a brand-new ginger dye job, or an apple-picking trip (or all three!), autumn is coming—and with it comes a glorious and glowing full harvest moon.
On Saturday, September 10, at 5:59 a.m. (ET), the full moon will be in Pisces. Like the strawberry supermoon in August, the title of harvest moon is not an astrological term. This particular lunar event is so nicknamed for its closeness to the autumn equinox, which is typically around September 22 or 23, explains the long-trusted Farmer's Almanac. It goes on to note that the moonrise comes shortly after the sunsets for multiple nights in a row, thereby resulting in “an abundance of bright moonlight early in the evening, which was a traditional aide to farmers and crews harvesting their summer-grown crops.”
This moon moniker has been used across many cultures around the world, with timeanddate.com stating that “harvest month was recorded as early as in the 700s in both Anglo-Saxon and Old High German languages.” For me, the name is a lovely reminder that before electricity, a full moon was the most light humans could possibly get at night. And with that, let's dive into how this full moon will impact us.
September 2022’s Pisces Full Moon
Since prehistoric humans had no other light at night except the moon, I can certainly imagine how once a month, at a full moon (and a few days before and after) early people took advantage of this big bright light in the sky to create new things, tell stories, and share ideas. (For more on this area of study, I definitely recommend reading Blood, Bread, and Roses: How Menstruation Created the World.) The significance of a full moon is deep in our ancestral DNA and collective memory. What do you see when you stare at a full moon? At times, I feel transfixed by it, as though at any moment it could pull me into the sky.
Pisces is the last sign of the zodiac and is therefore said to hold the lessons of all the other signs inside of it. (No wonder Pisces can be easily overwhelmed!) A Pisces feels psychically connected to everyone and everything, and so a full moon in Pisces can be a super-sensitive, emotional time—and a time to listen to your intuition. Remember: The full moon illuminates. What is being illuminated for you right now? Where is your soul? What are you dreaming about? Set aside time this week to reflect on where you're at right now and where you want to be. Try writing down your dreams as soon as you wake up for the next few days; you may be surprised at the themes or patterns you discover. (This is also a frequently recommended lucid dreaming technique, so if you have ever felt interested in trying to control the stories of your subconscious, maybe this is the perfect time to delve into it.)
The Contrasting Effects of Venus and Neptune
This harvest moon is 17 degrees and 41 minutes of Pisces with Neptune a few seats over at 24 degrees. Across from them rests the other (far larger) luminary, the sun, at the same degrees in Virgo. Then we have Venus—not quite conjunct but certainly part of the story. As in classical astrology, Venus is considered “under the sun’s beams.” Right now it is waning; come October, though, it will conjoin with the sun in Libra for very special conjunction that has not happened for 150 years, according to Arielle Guttman, the originator and discoverer of the now famous Venus Star Point. (I would elaborate further, but to be honest, Guttman's extensive research and writing offers such a comprehensive look at this astrological event that condensing it may do the subject a disservice, so I instead urge you to visit her website to learn more.)
For now, though, Venus is still in Virgo, and there are a few ways this can manifest. Venus (planet of attraction, desire, and our values) in Virgo asks you to be more discerning about what you value in your career path, as well as how you are valued in your job. Additionally, we can sometimes be too pragmatic during this time and find ourselves restricting some of the Venus gifts (fun, beauty, and love).
Neptune, on the other hand, is hanging out with the moon and offers a very different message. It is that little voice in the back of your mind that asks: Is it really that important that you send that email right now? Do you actually need to do the laundry and tidy the kitchen? The divine cosmos are just waiting for you to be one with them—are you sure you want to keep them waiting? The full moon is a time to practice balance and to weigh your choices with extra thoughtfulness.
Finding balance in the opposites is not always easy nor straightforward, but the Pisces full moon wants you to find wholeness with humanity and with everything around you. (The concept of Pisces being everything and all of creation is discussed at length in Maurice Fernandez’s book, Neptune, the 12th House, and Pisces: The Timelessness of Truth.) However, many full moons are about balancing the ego-centered, socially acceptable sun energy, which is often more action-oriented, with the more raw, emotional, id-like energy of the moon. In the case of the Virgo-Pisces axis of service, we are balancing the every day work of living, with the spiritual work of finding meaning in one’s life.
When Is Neptune Opposition in 2022?
A week after the Pisces full harvest moon, we will see this year's Neptune opposition, when the sun is opposite Neptune. Because Neptune is in Pisces—and has been since 2011—the Neptune opposition has been happening in August or September each year (a.k.a. Virgo season). If you keep a regular diary, I recommend going through old entries from around this time; chances are, you'll find at least one day when things were…mixed up, to say the least, if not a little chaotic.
When Neptune comes to a planet it can be confusing and enlightening at the same time. As a practicing astrologer, I recently attended the ISAR 2022 conference, which included many truly mind-blowing lectures. One such talk was Jason Holley's, which examined Neptune through Homers The Odyssey. (On a personal note, this talk forever changed how I see both Neptune and myself; never underestimate the power of a great live event with an excellent speaker!) Neptune can make us feel lost and confused, just as Odysseus so famously was; however, if we allow ourselves to be lost, we may in fact find ourselves in a state of wonder and inspiration, just as Odysseus became, and have unique experiences we wouldn't otherwise encounter.
All that said, the Neptune opposition on Friday, September 16, is not necessarily a time to make big plans or do anything special, with the exception of lugging a telescope to somewhere dark where you can properly stare at its awesomeness. Rather, it is a time to observe, especially when you are thrown off course or things do not go as planned. Now, Neptune is trying to give you some insight. Will you listen?
This post was originally published in Allure.
Originally Appeared on Glamour