Neptune, the spiritual and mystical planet, is in retrograde motion approximately 5 months every year. This means that roughly half of the population has the planet retrograde in their natal chart. Any retrograde natal planet in a natal chart means that its energies are turned inwards, at least for the beginning of the native’s life.
Any planet being retrograde during the native’s birth indicates that the planet and the things that it rules in his life are strongly connected with previous lives through karma. It takes some years until the person balances the planetary energies and discovers how to manifest them in the outer world. Having a planet retrograde in the natal chart does not mean that it acts as a malefic, it just means that it functions in a different way. In fact, retrograde planets can even have a huge positive influence, as they can bring to our current incarnation a lot of traits developed in previous ones.
Most people have more than one planet retrograde in their natal chart, and it is rather difficult to find a person that has all his natal planets direct. Therefore, we should understand that the karmic connection to previous lives is a rule affecting most of the population, and should be regarded as a tool to understand ourselves.
A common effect of any retrograde planet is delays concerning the matters of the house where it is located. Neptune, in particular, is a slow moving planet, and thus an individual may wait quite a long time before starting to experience its energy radiating outwards.
Retrograde Neptune indicates that, during previous lives, the individual was disappointed by failing to achieve his dreams and was frowned upon due to his spiritual ideas. His dreams may have collapsed due to heavy obligations, mostly connected with his own survival and his beloved ones’. Neptune suggests that he sacrificed a lot of the things that he had in mind, in order to support the needs that reality imposed on him. Alternatively, he might have been forced to follow a different religion or spiritual system than the one suiting him. Also, he generally may have felt unable to let his ideas flourish and bloom as his surroundings were not accepting them.
During the current incarnation, Neptune retrograde delivers some of these previous life traits. The native can have inner fears connected to externalizing his dreams and fantasies. He keeps a big part of his ideas just for himself, being afraid to share them with people as he believes they cannot understand him. This can lead him to escapism through delusions, mostly connected with the matters of the house where his natal Neptune is placed. He will daydream frequently, creating in his mind alternative scenarios of a different life. Many times, he can even establish a whole fantasy world in his mind, so well-structured and detailed that he can feel better living in it than in common reality.
Natal Neptune retrograde can be quite tricky, as it tends to suck away the person’s energy and make him less active in real life. We should not forget that Neptune is a passive planet, also ruling lies and deception. A retrograde Neptune can easily make a native deceive himself, losing important time of his life in fantasies. In addition, he can grant a passive acceptance of reality and deprive the native of the will to change things, until of course it is activated in order to function directly.
People with Neptune retrograde are more prone to drinking, smoking, while also use drugs and medicines. A good way to try to turn your Neptune energy outwards is taming your needs of seeking alternative realities through all these substances. In addition, another remedy is to activate your body through physical or spiritual activities. One of the problems that Neptune can bring is forgetting that we have a carnal body, and mostly concentrate on our mind and soul.
By indulging in physical activities, we awaken our body and stop the disbalance between our two natures. In addition, this can also raise our self-confidence and keep us away from procrastinating. Then, even daydreaming becomes safer as we focus towards more achievable things and can more easily establish a system to reach desired goals. Of course, as Neptune retrograde operates on a deeper level, it will be a slow and gradual process to change its functions.
Other fears that might develop with this natal aspect are also strongly connected with the energy of Neptune, and the 12th house where it is in domicile. The native may experience difficulties through feeling guilt, even without any apparent reason. He is more prone to becoming a scapegoat for others; in extreme cases, they will self-sacrifice even for people that do not deserve it. In addition, this can give tendencies towards martyrdom, depression or even self-restriction due to feelings of unworthiness.
In addition, a retrograde Neptune indicates that the native is more sensitive, while also more prone to wear masks so that people do not manage to see his deeper layers. This is a defensive mechanism so that his unique traits and characteristics do not bring him in the middle of the scene. The native fears that he will be ridiculed or ostracized for showing his real self. Wearing masks seem easier as he can dissolve in the crowd by appearing similar to them.
The lessons that one has to learn with a natal Neptune retrograde include being more realistic and stop lying to his own self. Such a native must grow a pair and stand up for what he really is, without caring if the other people will accept it or not. He must consciously take hold of his body and mind and become more active in his life. Also, he should stop feeling guilty for the wrongs of the world and the people around him, and dedicate himself to fighting for his dreams instead of just thinking about them.