What is Pisces’ Ruling Planet?
The ruling planet is the planet which has the most influence over a sign of the zodiac. The rulership of signs by planets is one of the most ancient and central parts of astrology. The powerful and unique properties of each planet have a direct influence on the characteristics of people born under the sign ruled by that planet.
While the majority of signs have always been associated with the same planet, Pisces is one of the three that actually experienced a change in which planet astrologers believed is most strongly associated with it. For centuries, the Moon was the ruler of both Cancer and Pisces, bestowing on both signs an empathetic and sensitive personality that both signs seemed to display.
However, when Neptune was discovered in 1846, it became the official ruler of Pisces.
This does not mean that Pisceans born before 1846 are somehow inherently different from Pisceans born after 1846. It simply means that there are now two different ways to interpret Pisces’ planetary rulership. As is the case with all dually-ruled signs (the other two are Scorpio and Aquarius), some people born under this sign are more affected by the old planet, and some are more affected by the new.
As always, it is of utmost importance to do your own research, and consult the rest of your chart, to gain a better sense of the impact of both planets on your life, especially when you are dealing with such a complex and hard-to-pin-down matter as astrological compatibility.
It is extremely difficult to make accurate blanket statements about compatibility, because there are so many factors (both astrological and human) that make every relationship different. Never begin or end a relationship based solely on astrology, but instead, use it as one tool to evaluate the tracks of your relationships.
The Moon: Pisces’ Former Ruling Planet
The Moon is an extremely sensitive planet to have as your ruler. It gifts you with an extreme conscientiousness about other people’s feelings and experiences. To a greater degree than any other sign except Cancer (the other planet ruled by the Moon), you are ruled by feelings of empathy. However, while Cancer’s empathetic nature is highly nurturing, and drives them to take on maternal roles, yours can be rooted in suffering.
You suffer for others, and feel other people’s struggles as your own. However, you frequently struggle to find a way to help them, because you are being pulled at by the drifting power of Neptune, rather than the light of the Moon.This can be exhausting and lead to feelings of hopelessness and helplessness.
Part of coming to terms with your dual rulership is determining how to find a balance between the Moon’s extreme empathy, and Neptune’s difficulty connecting with reality. If the Moon is a stronger influence on your chart, you will be more like a Cancer, and have a more solid foundation for nurturing behaviours.
Romance with the Moon as Pisces’ Ruling Planet
• You have an extremely nurturing personality and way of approaching relationships. You are highly sensitive to the needs of others, and have no difficulty intuiting when someone needs help, then giving it to them.
Your presence is extremely comforting, and you have a calming influence on all those around you, whether or not you are intentionally trying to use this effect to solve a problem. Simply by speaking to you, many people feel their stress wash away.
However, this can be because you are psychically shouldering the burden of their stress. They probably do not realize this – in fact, even you may not realize this – but over time, it can be an enormous psychic strain.
• You are highly receptive to the feelings of others – whatever your partner feels will rub off on you. For this reason, it is important that you make a concentrated effort to surround yourself with people who are ultimately positive thinkers. If you are surrounded by people who focus on the negative, you will naturally come to focus on the negative as well.
Obviously, even the greatest optimists have bad moments, bad days, and bad things that happen to them. But a more consistently positive pattern will help you practice consistently positive ways of thinking, which you can carry even into their bad days, to help them in the way that they help you.
• The Moon, although it is the brightest part of the night sky, has no light of its own. It reflects the light of the Sun, in a pale and gentle way. Like the Moon, you reflect the experiences, feelings, and even successes of others back towards them.
You also bask in other people’s successes, both for good and for ill. When a friend is successful, you are the first to be happy for them, and you express your happiness openly and genuinely.
However, you can become so focussed on other people’s successes that you lose sight of your own. This can be either in the form of forgetting about your own goals while focussing on encouraging others towards achieving theirs, or becoming so enraptured by the success of others that you feel as if you have no success of your own, which can lead to a lot of negative self-talk and feelings of unworthiness.
• You are a shy person, and have difficulty putting yourself into situations with new people, because you are conscious of how quickly you become attached and open yourself up to them. Because of this, you make a concentrated effort to not even start opening yourself up, for fear it will get out of control.
This can be quite damaging to your ability to make new friends, adapt to new circumstances, and especially find new lovers. Practice opening up more slowly, consciously restraining yourself from diving headfirst into emotional commitment as you are rather prone to doing.
• One of the key features of the Moon’s power is an ability to tap into the wider collective unconscious of your society, and accurately pick up on the zeitgeist of your time. You are highly aware of other people’s perceptions of the world, especially when they fall into very specific trends.
Because you’re a bit of an old-school romantic, with a love for fairy tales and literature, you quickly become aware that your desires are at odds with the mass consciousness surrounding you.
This can lead you to believe that you are searching for something that doesn’t exist in the real world, when you seek old-fashioned romance or chivalry. Because you believe this doesn’t exist, you can become frustrated and give up on your dreams, not realizing that there are plenty of other people who value these things, but who aren’t represented by mass culture.
• The Moon, especially in conjunction with Neptune, leads to a serious tendency towards escapism. Contrary to popular belief, with the Moon as your guide, you aren’t actually disconnected from reality (if the Moon is weak, you might be).
Instead, you may be hyper conscious of all the negative aspects of our modern world. You are aware of every injustice and tragedy that occurs around you, no matter how closely connected (or not) you are to it.
Because of this, you are desperate for an escape, and throw yourself vigorously into ways to get away from all that sadness.
Romance with Neptune
Neptune has a highly spiritual approach to love. Let me put it this way: the era of Pisces began with the birth of Jesus Christ. If that isn’t the greatest example of spiritual love in Western culture, I don’t know what is.
That’s the type of love that rules Pisces: selfless, giving, and intimately connected to a higher power. And while not every relationship can be like that of Christ to His people, you do imbue every relationship you enter with passionate, all-consuming devotion and self-sacrifice.
This can become a problem when the person with whom you are beginning this relationship is either unprepared for, or unwilling to reciprocate, that level of devotion.
Unpreparedness or unwillingness don’t necessarily reflect badly on them – everyone’s needs are different – but if they feel unable to communicate these feelings with you, the situation can quickly devolve into a very toxic one. You will constantly be throwing all your energy into the relationship, and they feel helpless while watching you deplete yourself.
If you enter a relationship with someone who does reciprocate the strength of your emotions, then you are at less risk of becoming emotionally and psychically depleted, because they will be giving energy back to you. However, you are at a new risk for co-dependent behaviour.
You may come to rely on their emotional energy to support yourself, and vice versa. Without their support, you may feel as if you don’t have the strength to deal with reality.
You may find it extremely difficult to function while separated from your partner, even for short periods of time, and woe betide the pair of Neptune-ruled people who attempt to enter a long-distance relationship without thorough structure and considerations.
To avert this, you must frequently and mindfully cultivate casual relationships with people who you will actively avoid throwing this level of energy into, and who can support you in your efforts to become more grounded in reality.
Neptune encourages a belief in the virtue of suffering. The idea that people who suffer are virtuous is deeply engrained in our society, from the central principles of orthodox Christianity, to the “victim culture” that is both frequently commented on in young people.
You believe in this frame of mind, and while it’s not by any means a bad way of thinking, inherently speaking, it can lead to self-destructive behaviours, by which you seek to make yourself suffer in order to become a better person. Combined with certain escapist tendencies, Pisces are at higher risk of drug use than other signs.
With all of these considerations taken into account, those ruled by Neptune require a partner who is both dedicated to them, and able to help cultivate the bond between the Pisces, and the “here and now”of the world.
Such people do exist, but they can be difficult to find. At times, when interacting with them, you may feel as if they are pushing you uncomfortably. And you don’t want to form a bond with someone who is always pushing you so far outside your comfort zone that you are unable to function. Balance is key.
As discussed above, when I discussed Neptune’s attitude towards the virtue of suffering, Neptune associates love with suffering and service. Because of this, you may struggle to have a “happy” relationship because you think that a relationship “doesn’t count” unless you’re in some degree of pain during it.
I think it goes without saying that this is not an overly healthy attitude to cultivate. On a conscious level, I’m sure you’re aware of this. But unconsciously, it is still what you’re drawn to.
Intentionally cultivate an attitude of joy in your relationships. A partnership should not be painful. There will be moments of pain, but they should and must be outweighed by moments of happiness. If this is not the case for you, you must immediately re-evaluate the priorities of the relationship, preferably in frank conversation with your partner.
Another struggle that many Pisceans face when they are pursuing a relationship is their search for perfection. Your highly romantic tendencies have given you a very strong and dearly held vision of what romance should be like.
Because you have such a perfectly articulated vision of your ideal, and because you are so frequently riddled with self-doubt (see above), it can be very difficult for you to make a move towards pursuing your romantic goals.
You may see a potential romantic partner – maybe even one who seems, in all ways, just like your ideal – but hesitate (and not just for a moment, but for hours, days, or even years) to make the move, because you feel something about the situation is imperfect. Maybe he’s just a little too brusque. Maybe you don’t look your best, or you’re tired. Maybe you’re in the wrong setting, with too many strangers around, or too many friends.
Everyone desires perfection – that’s what makes it perfection! But if you want things to match your vision of the ideal, you’re going to need to put articulated effort towards reaching that ideal, rather than just waiting until it occurs by chance. If you can do that, your romantic efforts (and all other efforts, in fact) will quickly become much more fruitful.
One final key note about Neptune – one that is frequently discussed in mystical astrological texts but often ignored in practical ones – is your extreme affinity for psychic phenomena.
Pisces are among the most likely signs to report paranormal activity around them (not necessarily malicious, but frequently very pronounced), and also some of the most likely to report prophetic dreams, visions, or premonitions.
If the occult is of interest to you, you will easily harness these skills for that, but even if it is not, your highly intuitive nature will have a significant effect in your life. You can predict other people’s emotions even before they themselves are aware of them.
This is why you are so conscious if your loved one is hurting, and so severely affected by it. If you are mystically inclined, you will benefit from psychic cleansing from a trusted mentor, and by channelling your psychic energy into magical workings or work for the greater good.
If you’re a more secular soul, practice clearing your mind through silent meditation (pretend you’re Harry Potter in The Order of the Phoenix), and mindfulness.
Either way, you will benefit enormously from the concentrated effort to clear the psychic debris that your sensitive mind picks up.
Because of your uniquely sensitive nature, romance can be a struggle for Pisceans. You face challenges that other signs don’t, and that they may not even understand. However, while it is the responsibility of those around you to practice empathy and try to appreciate your concerns, it is your responsibility to practice diligent self-care and self-reflection, in order to find a calm and happy space in your life.
If you are highly influenced by the Moon, then your urge to nurture and protect will shield you from some of the severest blows that Pisces can face – you are so focussed on helping others that psychic stress takes far longer to manifest (although it can be even more severe when it does). You will also benefit from reading materials intended for Cancers, as they are always ruled by the Moon and therefore share many of your characteristics.
If you are more strongly influenced by Neptune, then you have an extreme sensitivity that can be deeply fulfilling, but also dangerous. Make sure that you are surrounding yourself with people who have positive influences on you, rather than those who cause you undue stress, who invalidate your feelings, or who encourage such a deep dive into your emotions that you break with reality and become codependent.
No matter which planet more centrally affects you, it is crucial that you practice strengthening your bonds with the present, tangible, and objective world. Build a web of social relationships with various types of people, and regularly take risks that put you outside your comfort zone (but not so far outside that you then stop taking risks).
Can you feel the power of the Moon and Neptune in your life?
Are you highly conscious of other people’s feelings and needs? Conversely, are you so psychically sensitive that you sometimes struggle to function in the same way as your non-Piscean friends and acquaintances? Are you struggling to find a balance, or have you found one that works for you? How will you harness the Moon’s reflective light and Neptune’s psychic power to achieve the types of relationships that you are truly looking for?
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