The Mars-Neptune Manifesto?

John Steinbeck smoking, working

“…I have always lived violently, drunk hugely, eaten too much or not at all, slept around the clock or missed two nights of sleeping, worked too hard and too long in glory, or slobbed for a time in utter laziness. I’ve lifted, pulled, chopped, climbed, made love with joy and taken my hangovers as a consequence, not as a punishment….”


John Steinbeck (1902 – 1968)

Yes, well, okay…Imagine that in an online dating ad lol!

Steinbeck was an official rad genius of course but i just read the above quote and thought: Mars in harsh aspect to Neptune for sure. And voila yes. Mars in Pisces (not so strong there as is sign of Venus exaltation) and square Neptune in Gemini AND Uranus in Sagittarius. So there is a lot of don’t-fence-me-in-when-i’m-trying-to-hit-the-Blue-Devil-hoochie-juice there for sure. Yes?

Please don’t send me an outraged email to say that your mega-Zen little snookums has Mars square Neptune and is like a saint…i KNOW there can be awesome manifestations of any aspect between any planets. Really.

What do you think re the Literary Genius-Pisshead Paradigm and do these guys always require a Muse to clean up after them?  Mars Neptune Men? And do women with difficult Venus-Neptune aspects go as psycho-bats as the blokes? If they do, do they get cut as much slack as the guys?

In old-school astro, any “affliction” of a planet such as Venus or Mars was technically said to hint at sexual depravity, addictions and a vile personality. See how tactful i am being?

And scarily, would Steinbeck have been so prolific, such a touchstone for many, Pulitizer winning etc if he’d been a macrobiotic guy who knew what his transverse abdominus was?


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Michael H

I have Mars in Aries Squared Neptune in Capricorn (0 degree aspecting.) I also have a 12th house Leo Sun and 8th house Pisces Moon, so I’m quite familiar with Neptune’s etheric, ever-shifting seas. I can be the “mega-Zen little snookum,” and have experienced many drug-induced, psychotic breakdowns where I was honestly unable to differentiate reality from illusion. I personally enjoy the vast spectrum of experiences of this aspect. I love being swept away by romantic conquests and am often heartbroken when those I’ve chased are not the gods/goddesses I once saw them as. Excellent post!


Mars in Pisces square Saturn and Uranus (both in Sag). I had / have my wild days / nights… but am a sun Cap and moon / rising libra – so could still maintain being responsible and always wanted to be charming as opposed to making enemies. Part of why working in bars / restaurants for years suited me well. To be honest, I stick to a couple tried and true (softer) vices usually make it a marathon, not a sprint. My biggest issue is never wanting the party / night to be over… unless I am the one working… Read more »


But yes, as a woman, I have gotten totally unwarranted backlash from ultra conservative – jealous types! My motto is why let the boys have all the fun?


I have Mars inconjunct Neptune. I am a woman. I find that this aspect plays put for me as a need to write poetry and seduction. I appreciate fantasy and glamour. My energy level does fluctuate. As for alcohol I enjoy drinking but am no where near an alcoholic.

Isabel Marant shoes



This thread is reminding me of Brett Whitely & his addictions. Of all the brill Musicians that have prematurly died here in Oz due to speed, booze & smack. The Tortured Artist Archetype. I’d like to do a month of meditation & fasting in the crystal caves just explored & photo-ed in Mexico……for the purity. Have you seen the pix? Gi-normeous crystals. A radical de-tox is needed but i’m already a ‘skinny bitch’ & lack cullinary skills & know when i WAS veggo & dairy free, the amount of time for food prep was day-long organisation (before breadmakers). Funny story:… Read more »


Gives a whole new meaning to ‘visualize whirled peas’ 😀

Taurean Alchemist

hmmm. well, none of that applies to me, so I’ll have to go the consult… x

Taurean Alchemist

Mystic, Darling.. any advice on the Neptune square Neptune transit of ‘mid life’?? Mine is exact today, but I don’t get it.. is everything around me just an illusion? Am I kidding myself that all the Uranus opposition changes (e.g. now I have a career) are real? Is it a fantasy that I can meet someone special? (actually natally Neptune is in my 6th house so relationships and career probably don’t come into it..)

*le sigh* too many transits at once to grok


Alchemist, you have my complete admiration to be working plus
raising your 5 babes.
WHAT an achievement!! Look back at all your accomplishments.
Insecurity about living space is a bit of a prob, surely Taureans need
a secure home base to really thrive. Any way at all, at all, you can buy
(with a lot of help from all quarters) a house? Buy into a co-op?
A Will…A Way scenario?


I’ll write something, just hang on while I get another drink…

Yes, it is perfectly ok for male literates to be swashbuckling irresponsible alcoholic man whores as integral to their genius but if a woman lets it loose – watch out. Societal expectations and judgement comes down hard, sharper and faster than a tonne of proverbials, especially if said writer has off-spring.

Tea anyone?


Yeah, sorta like he “needed a strong woman to drive?” Been there with the ex Pisces but then resented for doing so. Noticed Steinbeck Leo rising and reading his quotes he doesn’t appear weak really (just like Pisces ex leo/mars/moon not either)..but….

Steinbeck a bit of a hypocrite.


I’ve read East of Eden twice – I think it’s the only book I’ve ever read more than once. Both times were many, many years ago but funnily enough just the other day I was thinking about reading it again.


I just read a book called ” A fire in the mind’ about Joseph Campbell – famous for his work on the the archetypal Hero’s Journey and a deep respect for women in mythology. This book details the period when Campbell had an affair with Steinbeck’s wife.

East of Eden is a pretty amazing read.


Venus opposite Neptune.

& I probably am a sexually depraved addict with a vile personality ; )


Well he apparently needed at least a sober muse – Ha-ha, hope he found one. Wouldn’t have found it in me in my earlier years, raoflmfao. BTW, I did post it later but I couldn’t think of the word for your granddaughter, heat’s addled my brains, but it turned up this morning – bodacious with that hat and lovely face. She’s a cracker, isn’t she?


With her Gem rising…out of control…lol

At Xmas she stomped out of the room in tears when her Mother too tired to finish the Gingerbread house (but “you promised!” Toro Moon?).

Pisces, Leo Moon stepfather “okay, run off and pout”…

Now I know how my poor mother felt in such situations….All you can do as a grannie (Nani) is observe and try to smooth the waters… 😕


Well, all my step-grandkids and step-greatgrandkids are in the UK so I’m sort of long-distance advisor, which is quite interesting.


~And scarily, would Steinbeck have been so prolific, such a touchstone for many, Pulitizer winning etc if he’d been a macrobiotic guy who knew what his transverse abdominus was?~

Probably not Mystic. He has Dionysus 12th exactly opposite Chiron in 6th!

~What do you think re the Literary Genius-Pisshead Paradigm and do these guys always require a Muse to clean up after them?~

Read he divorced his second wife as she was an alcoholic and that he needed “a strong woman to drive him”.

Well he apparently needed at least a sober muse.


Leo Mars sq Scorpio Neptune here too. I have Pisces Asc and have Neptune sq Aquarius Saturn as well. I enjoy a good wine or vodka once in a while but can only drink moderately or there’s hell to pay and I often get rare or unusual side-effects from meds. I’ve often had the sense that it will be a screw-up by a doctor with meds or anesthesia that does me in at the end.


this infamous crossover pornstar over here in the us has these aspects.
sasha grey
mars conjunct neptune in capricorn (had quite the punishing pornshoot schedule)
venus conjunct jupiter in taurus so definately a being that enjoys the sensuality in passivity (often the sub in her movies)

i <3 astrology


Mystic, you’re hilarious, don’t be shy, tell us what u see! 😉 I have a story of a Mars Neptune bestie ten yrs back. He Pisces sq mars, me pisces rising sq venus, cosmic, but boy could this fish drink!!!!! Also uber imaginative and clever which I was addicted to. He wrote a hilarious radioplay about a secret tupperware lady society in the fifties where the women’s husbands banned them from meeting but they snuck out weekly to meet and talk tupperware under the pretense of bible studies and visitting the ill and infirm. Very pisces? He swung wildly from… Read more »

Equilibrium Girl

See, as a Cap, this whole “bad with money” thing eludes me. I’d heard something about that before and it didn’t seem right. I tend not to give a crap about getting out there and earning big bucks – boring – but I do save save save and am terribly frugal (more out of necessity as I’m not going out there earning the big bucks!) Boys. Hmmmm… I tend to go for the bold, self-confident, smart, experienced types who are ever-ready to stand up against all the wrongs of the world… who look good in a suit… I tend to… Read more »


Actually, I think that is what you are meant to do w/ N Node present. My guess is : meant to take action re high ideals/ mysticism or ‘what you value’
in order to earn a living or perhaps to use the forementioned to find peace of mind through learning more about what you love. Delusions of grandeur could also be called ‘brainstorming’ in my opinion ! 😉

Equilibrium Girl

“Brainstorming.” Love it. Totally going to use that from now on, thank you S-rox!!!


You’re welcome , glad to help !


Discard if not useful: I read something about using your God given talents as destiny with 2nd house NN. I guess Neptune would give dreaminess and negatively illusion, while mars would give energy but negatively aggression. So my guess would be that you are the bold, smart, talented person who can cut glass with those Cappy cheekbones and looks fab in a suit that you desire in your life!! Energy for dreaming and fantasy about success for sure too. And why not? Visualisation is everything. 😉

Equilibrium Girl

Oooh, “visualisation” not “delusion.” Another brilliant word that I shall henceforth adopt, lovely Andromeda.

I love this blog!!!!!

Mystic, you need to get your techno guru to install a “like” button so we can “like” all these wonderful comments 🙂

Equilibrium Girl

This is one aspect of my chart I don’t get. Appreciate any insights:
Mars /Neptune / True Node conjunct in Saggo, 2nd house.


Loose with money?? Slips thru fingers easy. Careful with men who have a guru complex?? What type of men do you like Equi Girl?


Actually, to be very honest, I just feel he lived who he was and good luck to him. I wonder where, astrologically speaking, the healthy focus came from? I’m just curious because in my younger days (ahem!) there was a lot of rockin’ and rollin’ (not just by me but many others) and excess,and all of a sudden we’ve ended up with a Western society obsessed with being healthy and slim. If, for example, you looked at one of the African women bands who came over to Oz a while back, they were big women but super-healthy and super-energetic. But… Read more »


Maybe it’s important to divide ‘kicking up your heels’ from severe long term illness. Happy, healthy people can kick up their heels, but alcoholics are just trying to be normal by drinking. Eating for fun and eating to fill a whole are different too. Society isn’t living a healthy existence in general, gorging on oil and spewing out crap in several directions while destroying the environment. People might be feeling more stressed, less valued and more aware of their impact on the earth. All this astrological action by Uranus, Neptune etc. is surely part of the impact this has on… Read more »


Well, I do have to say that my father wallowed in grog and I never, ever got that bad, thank god. But isn’t it interesting how it takes off in other directions like impact on earth, it’s a bit like a kaleidoscope with all sorts of bits fitting then moving around. That’s the great thing about MM’s site – you get bits and pieces flying off into the great unknown.


Astrowise maybe check out whenever rome fell astrologically LibraAqua – or the revolutions in France or Russia, or even sodom and gomorrah (sorry to any christians ) don’t know how to spell the bible words).

Tide in, Tide out – none of this is new.


I’m just re-reading Liz Green’s book on the effects of the outer planets on societies, just been re-issued, fascinating reading.


Oops, Liz Greene


Just bought a couple Liz Greene, books, I look forward to getting into them! Happy New Moon Libraquarius!


Steinbeck is a heavy hitter artistically, I really respect him. I have Mars square Neptune, Venus quincunx Neptune.

I am not an addictive personality per se, but I know my way around Neptune’s pharmaceuticals cabinet. Alternate universe to my current life.

Dionysius is in my 3rd house conjunct the IC & Pluto. Sounds like I should start drinking while writing for success?!


I’ve got Mars at 41 deg Taurus, conjunct moon and mercury, squaring Pallas in Scorpio. Also Jupiter at 25 deg Taurus squaring Neptune in Scorp.

Anyhoo, I kind of relate to the above quote. I love alcohol and dionyssian adventure. But I also have a very practical, organised, sensible, healthy side. So I can have bouts of dissipation, then bouts of ultra-heathy yogi.

What can I say, I’m a Gem?


Mars square Neptune AND Jupiter. Moderation is not something I’ve ever understood. I mean, if you’re going to be alive and here, why be anything other than totally, totally here? *dives back into her jar of Nutella*




I concur – liquor’s not a lifestyle choice but I’m not interested in spending time with the saints.


Hmm.. checked my birth chart. I think I could use a little affliction.


Venus conj Jupiter (Jupiter on alcoholic degree) square Neptune (which is opp Moon.) Classic lush aspects. Was called a ‘buttery’ drunk: lovey-dovey giddy fool, etc… Used it to numb pain/ liquid courage depending on day. At one time was working 7/7 for around 3 years. Paid my 2 week tab at workplace when check came…added up $$ spent on stout beer and cigs, realized I could cut back to 6/6 if I quit. That was a no-brainer. Suffering does not cause or enhance genius, genius just is. I finally got that one after ?! years. Super drunk isn’t pretty on… Read more »


I have mars square neptune so…jumping in here.

lots of “experimentation”, no guilt complex, physical (even orgasmic) spiritual experiences, deep dark dreams. This aspect means moxie, especially with 8th/4th house placements. I read people well before I even know what it is that I know.

On the alternate side of that coin, though, serious periods of unexplained foul, violent depression, smirking spiritual pillaging, and drowning in addictions (real or imaginary). There are definite consequences to even the lightest of endeavors, and there is no such thing as a free ride / superficial affair. All or nothing.



The Dark Night of the Soul comes to mind.
Neptune can play cruel jokes on me. Neptune in my 1st House (Delusions of Self and Disappointment). Used to drown not in alcohol but in negative self loathing and hate in a downward spiral.
Didn’t need drugs to achieve it my mind tormented me enough.


I really wish there was I like or I agree button.

The Leo Socialite

I would date him with this description and a hotter pic! Got made to read grapes of Wrath at school and got crush on him from pic on book jacket

The Leo Socialite

What worries me is that if this WERE an online dating ad – with a better picture – i would answer it for sure.


I dunno – the only people who really seem to buy into the glamourisation of an alcoholic lifestyle are alcoholics – and Steinbeck is definitely one! Alcoholism definitely hits women harder than men. Our culture (actually most cultures) give men far too many free passes for shit behaviour, whereas women cop the brunt of judgement due to sex-based double standards. I recently watched a documentary that discussed the latest scientific research into alcoholism and it was quite compelling. Basically it’s been proved that alcoholism is a disease, quite separate to addiction to alcohol or alcohol abuse. There is a genetic… Read more »


Great info crab, thanks for sharing. 😉 I’ve lost pretty much my entire family to Alcoholism and Drug addiction. Terrible disease.

The Leo Socialite

Thank you for this so what is the difference between alcohol abuse and alcoholism. I am doing Feb Fast for a month and am perfectly happy to do without alcohol for four weeks but every – say – fourth time i drink wine, i really could drink the town dry…but i know people who never go a day without it and think that they could not. They say the only cure for a hangover is to drink again….


Thanks prowlin’ great info. Working the job I mention below, I saw how much $$ was spent on booze, cigs, lotto by my customers. Like looking in a mirror. Money pissed away or up in smoke. Just didn’t have the extra cash and made the choice.


Prowln, thanks for that bit of education, it’s always good to be reminded of how hard some roads are and that judgements are dangerous.

This guy, Gabor Mate, talking about addiction is really a wonderful doctor and person. He talks about the neural difficulties really simply here and also “don’t ask why the addiction, ask why the pain?”. His personal journey as a Doctor with ADD and a Jewish European migrant is really interesting too.


He says it isn’t much to do with genetics, he talks about brain development from birth. Our brains develop outside the womb like most animals inside the womb as we are slow developers… Recipe for trouble in some environments.

Little Joey

“basically alcoholism is a genetically inherited brain disorder” I totally believe this. I just count my blessings that it did not touch me. But I shake my head in disbelief at the terrible havoc I it has wrecked on some in my family. Once I told my alcoholic sibling that if I was told I could never have a drink again I wouldn’t care less. They answered me so sadly in a small voice“ Oh I just WISH that I could be like that”. Broke my heart. “if alcohol were to be discovered today it would be banned or on… Read more »


good post, I agree. Romanticizing drinking and smoking is mostly a fictional fantasy.
The reality pales in comparison.
I admire those that are creative w/o being a crazy drunk.
I think what others may see and envy is the freedom to be an artist unapologetically.

I have Mars Square Neptune and can get drink very easily and end up dancing on tabletops. But, I have to be careful with all drugs including prescription and otc.
It effects me and the effect is intense.
My best ideas come to me when sober.


lol! oops!
*and I can get drunk very easily


Prowlncrab- That’s very interesting! I would love to see this study. Do you know the name of it or where I can find it? btw- sober 28 years, ven/mar conjunct and both square neptune. Recovering from every addiction known to woman! I love life big and I’ve suffered big too. Maybe that explains it. As well as the brain condition that goes with my natal chart!


I’ve got Moon-Mars-Neptune conjunct in Sag and in the 9th house, ultra fantasist and stupidly impulsive. Certainly not a mega-Zen little snookums that’s for sure and have the tendency to be a slave the more Dionysian pleasures in life when I let myself go. Dionysius in Libra (of course, everything in bloody Libra) conjunct Venus, ha that makes sense.

Steinbeck had his in Cancer!


I’ve got Neptune square Mars AND Venus (Mars/Venus conjunction) and I’m the most boring person I know. Just reading that quote made me tired. I could probably do with a little more psycho battiness, really.


Interesting–thinking about this made me remember the one and only time drinking too much (I almost never drink, but when I do, it definitely has a strong and immediate effect on me) got me into real trouble, so I checked my chart and transits for that day, and:

Retrograde Pluto was conjunct my natal Neptune
Mercury, Venus and Mars were square my natal Neptune
The Sun, the Moon, and Saturn were opposite my natal Moon and Ascendant, which are in Pisces (Neptune ruled).

…Yikes. I never should have left the house.


but you did.. was it as bad as you are making out.


Is a “conjoining” considered a harsh aspect? Depending on the planet involoved? So if my Mars and Neptune are conjoined in the 12th that could explain all that Blue Devil Hootchie Table Dancing I’ve done over the years? (there’s something mysteriously sexy about this guy)

see what I mean? Nothing but trouble. 😉


Can go either way i think scorp? Depends on how you channel the mars-neptune energy. Idealistic, high drunk, fighter for underdog.?? spooky, surreal, psychic dreams??


The sexy vibe emanates from those that are creative, intelligent and contemplative don’t you think? What’s mysterious about a superficial metrosexual?

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