2011: Springtime of the Peoples

Tuesday February 1st 2011
Set during the Paris uprising of 1848,
Flaubert’s novel Sentimental Education
explores lessons in love and friendship.
It was published some 20 years after the events.

I’ve been thinking about the planet Neptune’s ingress into Pisces a lot over the past year.  This will happen in March.

It’s a biggie – as important as Pluto entering Capricorn, which signalled the collapse of the banking system in 2008.

Neptune is a slow-moving planet. Last time he moved into Pisces was February 1848.

That year, when Neptune moved back and forth over the last degrees of Aquarius and into Pisces, is known by historians as the Year of Revolutions or more poetically, the Springtime of the Peoples. Why?
The barricades in Prague 1848

Because a wave of popular uprising swept across Europe bringing change and turmoil to the following countries.

  • France
  • The Italian States
  • The German States
  • Poland
  • Denmark
  • Schleswig
  • Most of the Habsburg Empire which stretched from Poland to Romania, including Austria, Hungary, Bohemia, Slovakia. That is all of what we now call Eastern Europe.
Does this sound familiar?
Barricades in Cairo 2011.

Most of these uprisings were quashed and at the time, it seemed as if the aspirations of the people – for independence, self-expression, democracy – would come to nothing. But in fact, it turned out that 1848 was a turning point for Europe. The people had started down the road to universal suffrage  and there was no turning back.

Now astrologers always associate Uranus with revolution and rebellion – and this certainly works astrologically. (For examples, look at the charts of Che Guevara and Fidel Castro.) Currently, Uranus in Pisces is semi-sextile to Neptune in Aquarius. These two slow planets are in each otther’s signs, and working in concert in other words. Together, they will bring about change

Uranus is especially significant in Tunisia’s Jasmine Revolution (click to see my last post on this), but the for the Egyptian Uprising (click to see my previous post), Neptune is the key planet. Now why would that be?

We also know that Neptune represents idealism and the dreams of the collective.

Astrologers disagree about whether Neptune is a higher octave of Venus or the Moon; in other words, which inner planet it behaves like on an impersonal level. The outer planets always deal with mass consciousness. I’d suggest in this instance Neptune is behaving like the Moon, which as we know represents the masses in mundane charts. It’s like a super-Moon, indicating a mass movement. Unlike many other revolutions – the Egyptian Revolution of 1952 for example – this is not a rebellion by a small group acting out for the benefit or otherwise of the masses. This it the masses speaking for themselves. 

There is a very special spring holiday in Egypt called Sham en nisim, which means something like Enjoy the Zephyr. It’s an ancient festival, dating from pharoanic times and it’s one of the few celebrated by everyone, Christians, Muslims, agnostics and everyone in between. It’s a day to welcome the spring.

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  1. KL says:

    And in Egypt in 1848 in Egypt? Muhammad Ali, the founder of the modern country, became so ill he had to step aside. He died the following August. His rule had lasted from 1805, so I guess he beat Mubarak on length of rule – just.

  2. Christina says:

    I’ve never really thought of Neptune as political in this way, but I guess all the outer planets are political to some extent, since they deal with mass consciousness.

  3. SarahMc says:

    Oh how spookily accurate things are in the light of the Egyptian revolution. This is a seminal moment in Middle Eastern politics and therefore of the world. Good old Neptune!

  4. Hi Christina,
    your observations about the strong lunar side of Neptune is very interesting.
    Do you know the work of Italian astrologer Lisa Morpurgo?
    She challenged traditional assumptions saying that the Moon is exalted in Pisces. I agree with this thesis. The exaltation of Venus in this sign simply doesn’t make sense if we think of Venus as a planet strongly linked to attachments and sensual pleasure. The Pisces stage is the one in which we must let go all attachments in order to be able to start a new cycle and in which the sensual link with life must be weakened in order to strengthen our connection with spirit. The Moon here would be instead a mothering principle, able to nurture a new birth – as you say – in an impersonal way.
    Your posts are always wery interesting 🙂 Thanks

  5. Christina says:

    No I haven’t heard of her but I’m going to check out what she says now. My feeling about the Moon and Neptune is simply from the evidence, but I’m keeping an open mind.

    Thanks for the steer

  6. jim says:

    Any thought about Uranus in Aries squaring Pluto in Capricorn? Seems to me that this might be related to the violent overthrow of world plutocratic rule. Neptune, may figure in as well, but I see this as more Uranus/Pluto square in the cardinals.

  7. jim says:

    Seems to me the Arab Spring, as well as upheavals in the economic world (teaparty here in the U.S.), are more about Uranus in Aries squaring Pluto in Capricorn. The plutocrats are hit violently (look at Mubarak on trial and Kaddafi about to be, if he’s lucky).

  8. Christina says:

    Hello jim – welcome to the OA and thanks for commenting. I agree that Uranus and friends are factors. I think it’s the combination of stuff which makes the spirit of the times.

    The Cardinal stuff is obvious though – and gets commented on a lot, but Neptune is very important. It’s the subtle nature of Neptune to be overlooked.

    I think you have to pay attention when the planet is in the same spot (for the first time since 1848), the language used about the events – Springtime of the Peoples, Arab Spring – is also the same, and the style of the events is the same popular uprisings, not coups d’etats.

    Neptune is like the salt in a loaf of bread. You don’t notice it’s there, but you’d sure notice if it was missing.

  9. jim says:

    Hey Christina, Thanks for your response to my comment. I thought about what you said re: the last time Neptune entered Pisces and decided to do the same for the last time Pluto entered Capricorn and a quick look-see on what Uranus was doing (since my comment had to do with those two guys). Pluto last entered Capricorn in 1762. It stayed in the general vicinity of where it is now until 1765. During this time, England ruled the world, and especially was kicking butt in the Colonial world. They kicked the French out of Canada, and the Spanish out of Florida. They put them both in a swampy, gator infested, flood prone realm called Louisiana. Meanwhile, the English parliament was passing some laws which set the American Revolution in motion. Settlers were forbidden to move west of the Appalachians, Americans houses were forcibly taken for housing of British troops, and more damaging to the relationship was the passing of the Stamp Act, which was the first direct taxation on the American people. Responding to these events as a “people” rebelling against the “tyranny” of the faraway rulers, Patrick Henry (of later give me death or give me liberty fame) declared the Stamp Act not valid for the Colonies, which led some to claim Mr. Henry’s words treasonous, to which he replied, “If it be treason, make the most of it!” Uranus at the time was in Gemini (rather than Aries as it is now), perhaps helping to create an intellectual, more cultural response to the tyrannnical control of the Colonies as exerted by the English King and Parliament. These events fit well with the “times” of today where people everywhere are rising against the perceived tyranny of their rulers. The difference is that with Uranus in Aries, we are seeing a much greater degree of violence in those rebelling against their rulers. Put this with your comments on Neptune and I think we almost complete the picture. Of course, I’ve said nothing about Saturn in Libra (that T-square you mentioned,) I’m sure that fits in there as well.

  10. Christina says:

    Thanks for that great summary Jim. Revolutionary times indeed.

    Don’t you think the American Revolution was about radical new ideas (Uranus in Gemini), whereas this seems to be much more about straightforward personal freedom.

    The other revolution that was kicking off in the 1760//70s here in the UK was the industrial one.

    Here are some more things to think about: the UK Sun in the 1801 chart is at 10 Capricorn (so post-Revolution),in the 1066 chart it’s at 3 Cap. The US Sun is at 13 Cancer and her Venus is at 3 Cancer. All points that are or will be contacted by Pluto.

    The radical change is not over.

  11. […] final degrees of Aquarius. This exactly paralleled the Year of Revolutions of 1848, as I pointed out in a previous piece, in the short […]

  12. […] practicality (Saturn) and idealism (Neptune), tradition and mass consciousness. I have written before about Neptune’s influence in earlier popular uprisings, including the year of revolutions 1848. These all fizzled out because no real leadership emerged. […]

  13. […] I wrote a post at the start of this month about the Year of Revolutions, 1848, and its paralells with now. To read it and reflect on the events in Bahrain, Libya, Egypt, Tunisia click here. […]