The Archetype of Pisces, Neptune and the 12th House

I wrote previously about Virgo and the archetypic need for something tangible as a manifestation of doing our part in service to the whole, the lesson is that things will not happen without our effort. In comparison, with Pisces there is an understanding of the possibility of Grace at every moment of every day without any effort whatsoever, we are always already there.

The Pisces archetype is mutable and its element is water. Fluid, transforming, emotional and internalizing, attaching and intimate are some adjectives that describe water signs. With the water signs we learn to process, in fact, must process to bring to fruition this element. Mutability is about globalization, touching many, bringing the pieces together and working interdependently. The combination that is Pisces, Water and Mutable, describe, at least on the surface, a paradox.

For example, how would a Pisces Sun function? The meaning and creative purpose of these folks is to connect with and feel (water) but not so much about their home and family (Cancer) or their limitations and fears (Scorpio), they connect with their own personal limitlessness. They understand we are all at once small and very immense. We are a discrete person but a part of a vastness that is immeasurable. It makes all of us small and large, of little importance and immensely important. You get the picture. This can be quite confusing for the Piscean types. In the best expression these folks are flexible, see life as an open proposition, do not get into the little stuff because their eyes do not see the bits and pieces, they are into the global picture. On the negative side, they can lose themselves. Life becomes about the big picture. They may lose themselves in saving the whales or writing poetry. They might stay out running-with the “runner’s high” for hours on end enriched through subsuming their personal ego for a larger cause; however, it can, over a lifetime, give rise to loss of personal attention. To live productively there must be a balance which means some attention to detail. We must take a shower and eat food or we will not be healthy. We must give attention to others in our life, our significant other may not do well without some personal attention, another detail. It can be chaotic to live without the appropriate attention to our lives and this cannot be sustained indefinitely.

The symbol of Pisces is two fish swimming head to tail. This encapsulates the paradox, the duality intrinsic to this archetype. There is longing for one, to lose themselves in the greater singular truth but we are in a body on this planet. We are not all one, we have an individual body and ultimately live a singular existence. This reality is painful to this type. The two fish will never be one and will never catch the other, forever isolated. The best we can do is to maintain our innocence and trust in the face of reality. The mission of Pisces is to continue to believe in the possibility of redemption in the face of imperfection and pain.

Keywords for Pisces include:

The big picture, life as a whole


Simplicity, Innocence, Trust

Perfect as it is, raw beauty, nature, Truth

Intoxication, Sleep, Spacey



In the Body: the Immune System, lymphatics, thymus, pineal gland and lack of vitality in general.


An example of this archetype is Mohandas Gandhi. His natal chart shows Sun in the 12th house which rules the North Node and represents his spiritual future and in opposition to Neptune, a double signature for the Pisces archetype. He also has a prominent Neptune that is driving the energy of much of the chart. He represented this energy well. He was a symbol of Indian nationalism against British rule. His goal was independence, a global goal. His personal identity was subsumed in this cause. He did not worry himself with the details and this engendered enemies, one of whom assassinated him.

Another fascinating Piscean personality is Ted Kennedy, brother of John and Robert Kennedy. He has Sun in Pisces and his North Node in Pisces. He also had his Moon in conjunction to Neptune tightly. He represents this archetype by the lack of emotional connectedness that his life was. He was a public figure for over 40 years, working on behalf of liberalism. His public persona, that of a brother to two of the most famous public figures and most famous victims of this country can also be seen in this symbolism. He himself was less important than this persona. Interesting to note Mercury (the symbol for his brothers) is conjunct that Pisces Sun. This shows symbolically the fusion of the brothers and his life’s purpose. He died of a brain tumor which can be seen symbolically by that same set of symbols, Mercury-brain and Pisces representing lack of immunity and susceptibility to the ill-health, the cancer.

Maurice Fernandez, my teacher and mentor has written a lot regarding Neptune and his book, Neptune: The End of Hope, The Beginning of Truth is an essential read for this archetype.