November 30, 2021•712 words
Question: What are the main differences between Aquarius and Pisces?
The distinction I would draw between Aquarius and Pisces is that Aquarius is the large group (the nation, society, etc), while Pisces is the totality. The result is that Aquarius functions on the level of signifiers, ideology, etc (Saturnian in its reliance on form and structure, airy in its intellectuality, fixed in its presupposition and maintenance of that which exists), while Pisces transcends this and reaches for a level of attunement that cannot be fully grasped through the signifier; there is always an excess, and Pisces can only gesture (Jupiterian in its attempt to reach beyond, watery in its intuitive grasping, mutable in the peculiar relationship of the individual subject who attempts to apprehend the totality, wherein that which appears in a momentary connectedness disappears in the next).
This is why, in my experience, the language of an Aquarius is political, intellectual, attuned to the discourse, whereas Pisces almost speaks in riddles, in shapes and forms, attempting to render that which cannot be depicted. It makes sense as well to think about Aries, in following Pisces, as the spark or moment of absolute certainty that bursts forth from the depths of the totality and begins a new individuality.
A reply writes: I once read a description along the lines of "it can be hard to understand Pisces and that may be because Pisces does not want to be understood."
I want to dive into this a bit by giving a few examples, case studies of people I know. A friend of mine has Mercury (and Saturn, Mars) in Pisces, and she definitely wants to be understood, but has trouble communicating her insights, often because they're at a level of abstraction way beyond what she has the language for. Perhaps the proper language doesn't exist to communicate what she wants to say; she would talk a lot about spirals and is the person who introduced me to Astrology. She fears she comes across as dumb to others because she cannot communicate her thoughts.
On the other hand, another friend of mine has Sun, Moon (and Saturn and Mars) in Pisces, but Mercury in Aquarius, and he's a strong communicator, brilliant at rhetoric, but waffles emotionally and in terms of his identity: he's never sure if he's satisfied with his life, always talking about moving and switching careers, seems to always have some new insight with his therapist but it never seems to stick.
He's deeply involved with another friend of mine, who also has Mercury in Aquarius and Sun, Saturn, Mars in Pisces, but Moon in Virgo. She's also extremely bright and a strong communicator, and also seems to waffle in terms of identity, especially sexual and in terms of self-perception, but her relationship to her emotional needs could not be more different. And indeed, Virgo is opposite Pisces; there's a common element of mutability between the two, but for her, emotional need manifests on a more physical plane, as a problem to be solved, often by changing her concrete methods of emotional satisfaction, e.g. by dating women instead of men, rather than flip-flopping on a purely emotional level.
I feel that a lot of this is determined by house. My first friend I describe (Mercury in Pisces) has Pisces in 4th house, so for her it's always deep, personal insights she's trying to dig up and communicate to those she's intimate with, but seems to always just avoid being understood. The second friend (Sun and Moon in Pisces) has Pisces in 3rd, so for him it's about what he's pursuing in terms of intellectual endeavors, what he's learning: one day he'll be studying for the GREs, the next he'll be writing another essay, or messing around on Tinder. The third friend (Sun in Pisces) has Pisces in 9th, and she is a student of psychology, in which adjusting to the emotions of the other is paramount, and she is very widely read in philosophy and able to make deep connections across domains.
My takeaway from these three case studies is that house matters quite a bit in determining how a planet in Pisces will manifest, and that it's hard to make firmer statements without taking that into consideration as well.