Astrology, Human Design, I Ching

Neptune in Gate 36 – Reclaiming the Dark

Written by Kim Gould

On 9 May 2021, Neptune moves into the Gate of the Darkening of the Light. It’s another important stepping stone and I’m going to explore how you can engage with these energies for positive outcomes. You might look at the name of this gate – Darkening of the Light – and feel a bit uncomfortable. It is powerful medicine, this gate of reclaiming the dark. As we approach 2027 it’s important to recognise that we are creating these changes, they are not something random that’s happening to us.

In a sane and natural world we experience dark and light, day and night. In our increasingly insane society, the dark has long been associated with women and nature, and we have been taught to fear it. This is a culture where we must always be ON! Anything that takes us away from our role as commodity (consumer/worker) leaves us feeling anxious, wondering how we will survive. It also isolates us from the powerhouse of personal knowing that creates good boundaries and healthy human culture.

The beautiful fecund world of nature and our own wild inner selves draw us away from, and threaten our ability to contribute to, the insanity we are witnessing. It’s this aspect of ourselves that Neptune is calling forth in the next few years.

There is work to be done, emotional work, consciousness work. Humanity has been overtaken by a kind of insanity and we have to face our own inner crazy so we can support others with less skill and awareness to become more whole.


Most lightworkers are sensitive folk, we have shielded ourselves from harsh reality out of necessity. But we are also defenders of the good, and how we engage with reality must change.

We have moved beyond the notion of individual creation, into a new collective space. We can’t avert our gaze and focus on only manifesting the good in our own lives. There is a particular kind of darkness in our humanity and it is time for us to engage with it. But we have to do it with great skill and care.

There are two threads to Neptune’s time in this gate. Firstly, creating a new level of emotional clarity. Second, holding the light during difficult times. We can’t do one without the other. We can’t fool ourselves that we are holding the light if we are numbing ourselves to our own dark places. And we can never have emotional clarity if we cannot hold the balance of our own light and dark regardless of external circumstances.


In 2025, Pluto will move into the Gate of Fantasy (41), bringing a huge shift in humanity’s understanding of the role of emotions in creating our reality. Neptune is a forerunner, identifying where we numb out, dissociate, fantasize and generally avoid what life puts before us. These are our dreams, unrealised for now because our society does not provide us with pathways to fulfill them. We tend to blame ourselves for these failures. That comes from misunderstanding the time. Before we can live the dream we have to complete the nightmare. We’ve already done most of the hard work, there’s just the last few steps to go.

Emotional wounds are nothing more than incomplete cycles of experience. They let us know we have not yet come to the end of a partiular story. We are approaching a time when more people will become aware of their emotional wounding, and how the past impacts their present. The difficulty of taking time out to nurse and heal emotional wounds is going to trigger a shift in how we view capitalism. People won’t be able to contribute in the ways they are doing now. Consciousness and slavery cannot coexist.

Photo by Darius Bashar on Unsplash

That chaotic emotional field is a massive sink of energy we are not yet accessing. It is bound up in protecting our wounds, an untapped human resource.

Neptune’s time in Gate 36 will break apart the apparently unstoppable movement towards complete colonisation of humanity – our time, our energy, our creative intelligence, even our biodata.


The paradoxical nature of our world in 2021 is that while people have been enculturated to avoid these dark places in themselves, those at the top of the hierarchy use the darkness as a foil, to become invisible and to manipulate. No one can see in the dark if their own darkness is hidden from them. You and I have spent decades disentangling from this energy, and these next few years will bring a whole new cohort of people into this work.

As more people are able to connect with emotional clarity and personal wisdom, the ability to manipulate humanity away from the good is going to decline. There will be a clearer view of the systemic insanity we have been contributing to.

Emotional energy is the most potent force of human creation. It is activated by relationship, by family and community, by caring and wanting the best for each other. We cannot move to the next stage of human evolution until we untangle this mess of damaged emotional energy.

Dust settles on cultures and civilizations when the golden ages have run their course.

Bradford Hatcher, The Book of Changes, on hexagram 36.

As our existing western culture heads into dark times, it is our role to cache the brightest parts of humanity, to hold the light in trust for that moment when toxic darkness burns itself out.

We may choose to resist, in our way; to protest, march, meditate, write. But there is something we have to realise.

If you try to assert yourself you will be opposed and you may be injured. Do not give the darkness the opportunity to harm you. Do not let the darkness on the outside extinguish the light on the inside. Know when to shine out and when to stay hidden, when to be visible and when to retreat. Once we have withdrawn it’s fuel, the greatest foe of the toxic darkness is time.


This gate is part of what Ra Uru Hu calls The Experiential Way, two emotional channels that drive us to new experiences through a yearning to fulfill our own unique nature.

These channels are part of the cyclical collective circuitry which takes us on a life journey perfectly arranged for (by) our own soul, as if we are reading a Choose Your Own Adventure childrens’ book. It is the circuit of wisdom.


While the general idea is that 2027 heralds a new era of the individual and a breakdown of our existing communal culture, it’s really more about shifting HOW we experience our individuality. This is a shift in the fractal arrangement of humanity, the structure of how we relate.

Indigenous groups tended to be small networked hubs distributed over a region. They were overwhelmingly peaceful and egalitarian, and had what we might call direct democracy (where everyone had a voice in decision making). About 5,000 years ago a new culture arose in Old Europe, based on a hierarchical alliegance to a single male god. This was a stunning departure from what had gone before. This new culture was anything but peaceful, definitely not egalitarian, and was based on obedience to a higher power. Riane Eisler calls it the Dominator Culture.

I googled ‘benefits of patriarchy’ and that was weird. So I’ll just rely on my own take. that we got to experience ourselves as individuals in a way that hadn’t existed 5,000 years ago. We got the hero’s journey. We got innovation and technology. We got the thrusting need for progress that believes it can burst free from the limitations of nature if it just throws enough money at a problem. Elon, I’m looking at you.

We have outgrown patriarchy.

What comes next necessarily arises from the collective emotional field of humanity. We are moving into a global distributed network where consciousness moves between hubs of close-knit humans ‘being’ in collaboration. This network isn’t based on race or gender or neurotypical thinking. It’s the opposite of obedience, but doesn’t need rebellion because there is no centralised authority to rebel against. You are free to do your own thing.


We know from percolation theory that these networks can create profound shifts from just a small number of people who form in pockets and gradually connect with a few more people. What’s fundamental to the power of these nodes is that we must be capable of relating on this new level. We can’t make this leap if our old wounds of rejection, critisism, perfectionism, humiliation continue to isolate us from each other.

And if this seems like all together too much work with not much hope, just know that we are heading into a phase transition state of human evolution. Have you ever watched water boiling? It’s like … nothing, nothing, nothing … oh wow, there it goes! As we do this work we will get to a point where we see rapid change happening. Just as we do when we boil water.

Read: Matrix of Brilliance

But. You must be contributing to the energy of this matrix, not stealing energy away from it. The notion of accumulating for selfish fear-based reasons is so 2020! And what Coronavirus was here to remove from our DNA.

Read: The hidden Human Design keys in Coronavirus


The 2027 event arises from the Solar Plexus Centre. Ra Uru Hu describes how the Experiential Way gates – 41, 30, 36, 35 – will completely disappear because this stream of consciousness can never be aware. My mind is open, but that doesn’t make sense to me.

There is a huge amount of scientific evidence suggesting humanity is evolving in our ability to integrate multiple awareness streams – particularly our emotions and our higher (executive) mind. You only have to look at the increasing recognition of effects like PTSD, depression, complex grief, and the new tools becoming available to heal them.

Gate 36 is connected to every single emotional experience you can have – romance, caring for a child, the thrill of a roller coaster, lusting after a new squeeze, the joy of listening to music, the pain of losing a loved one. It gets this connection through it’s complementary gate (6).

Each one of us has developed a fragmentation of our psyche (gate 37) through preferencing certain emotions over others (6/36). For some, anger is acceptable but sadness must be hidden away. In other families it may be the opposite. We all learn which parts of ourselves get the tick of approval and which we should shut down.

The story of those parts we shut down never gets told. We don’t hear the story, we don’t feel the emotions. Instead we get sick, we feel anxious or depressed with no apparent cause, we act in weird ways that we are often oblivious to.

Neptune in Gate 36 is bringing those repressed emotional streams back into consciousness. We can’t do this work in our minds, we can’t do it by being more spiritual. We can’t stay in the higher love frequency of our G Centre and avoid the mess of emotions. We can only move through this stage by feeling what wants to be felt.

If you have an undefined Solar Plexus Centre you’ve already lived through 2 years of Neptune in Gate 22. You should step away from projected conflict, when someone wants to drag you in to play out one side of their fragmentation. You should not buy into disappointment – the if only energy of the Experiential Way. And you should remember that you are not weird or crazy for not getting caught up in all of this. You should also remember that although you have an undefined Solar Plexus Centre, you DO have emotions and you also have some work to do in this process.


The story of Gate 36 is one of corrupt leaders taking retribution on those who don’t support their greed for money and power. I’ll quote Hilary Barrett:

The story goes that once, the king and his entourage were so drunk they literally didn’t know what day it was. Messengers were sent to ask Ji (our hero). Rather than reveal himself as the only one who knew the truth, Ji feigned drunkenness and madness. In this way he was able to survive the last days of the Shang dynasty without compromising his principles by cooperating with the regime.

Hilary Barrett, I Ching, Hexagram 36.

Let’s see what Bradford Hatcher has to say:

Through civilization’s dark times and ages, wisdom, culture and hope may go underground. Intelligence learns of reasons it has to hide, to hold the light in trust for better days to come.

Bradford Hatcher, The Book of Changes, on hexagram 36

and Jack Balkin:

Do not let the darkness on the outside extinguish the light on the inside, for then there will be nothing left of you when times improve.

Jack Balkin, The Laws of Change: I Ching and the Philosophy of Life, on hexagram 36.

We are in the dying days of a 5,000 year old culture that has colonized every continent and every tribe on earth. We can help it along by doing the difficult personal emotional recovery work. We can be active in decolonizing ourselves, in completing and healing our cycles of experience. This is a time for reclaiming our own stories, for shining out and reconnecting with both the light and healthy dark in others.


This is the Harry Potter moment. Saturn will be in Gate 13 from 5 May 2021 till 11 June 2021, from 13 January till 2 March 2022, and from 5 October till 10 November 2022. This is the gate where humanity has locked up all it’s secrets. This channel supports the sharing of everything we have suppressed, the release into the collective of the stories we haven’t been able to hear or tell. It’s not only this life, but also the completion of past lives. These times will facilitate a cracking open of the emotional field of humanity, allowing the secrets to spill out into a safe space to be heard and healed.

This is a part of a process of emotional completion that will support us to express the positive attributes of Gate 13 – a whole new level creative collaboration with like-minded others unhindered by our fears of rejection, abandonment, critisism, punishment.


Here’s something astonishing. Uranus will be in the central individual HD channel from May 2017 till November 2025, other than just a few moments in Gate 27. That’s EIGHT years that the planet of individuality spends in the channel of individuality. If we count Uranus’ time in Gate 20 (also an individual channel but not in the central channel), we get to May 2027!

This central channel is part of the Knowing Circuit – a design for bringing individual mutation to the collective. From the perspective of the Kaballah it is the place within us where knowledge arises from the meeting of wisdom with understanding.

What does that mean? A quick note about the quality of Uranus – it’s an individual seeking it’s place within the collective. It will rebel against authority until it brings that authority down and replaces it with a new more egalitarian order. Uranus, in his incarnation as Prometheus, seeks to steal the fire from the gods and gift it to humanity.

Both Uranus and the Individual circuitry hold the energy of sudden unexpected mutations.

For me, this period through till 2027 is a time for us to break free of the chains that have bound us through our emotional body, Our tribal caring energy was co-opted to the greed of the oligarchs and theocrats who sat at the top of the patriarchal hierarchy, pretending to be god. Uranus is helping us find our way back, not to anarchy, but to an inclusive, caring and creative global community.


These are the dates when Neptune in Gate 36 will be most active.

April 2022 – Jupiter (expansion, opportunity) will join Neptune in Gate 36 bringing the energy we need to carry ourselves forward to new things. Persephone is in the adjoining Gate of Progress (35), the Queen of the Underworld activates sudden surprising shifts that reveal new qualities in us. A shift in values, a new perspective in how we tell the story of our lives and community takes hold.

Mars has an important role in bringing us the courage to listen to our dark selves. He is retrograde in the adjoining Gate 35 (Progress) in December 2022. He tells us what to do if we meet resistance and can’t make progress. We should take a pause, create space where we can apprehend the true opportunity and gift in the situation. We should practice gratitude.

In February 2023 Mars will be direct in Gate 35 (Progress), teaching us we don’t need much to make progress, just a small shimmer of light. It’s not the amount of light, but our skill in making use of it that matters.

Neptune’s movements in Gate 36 (times in UT)

  • Neptune moves into Gate 36 on 9 May 2021.
  • 25 June 2021 – Neptune goes retrograde in Gate 36 line 1
  • 13 August 2021 – Neptune goes back into Gate 22
  • 1 Deceember 2021 – Neptune goes direct
  • 6 March 2022 – Neptune goes back into Gate 36
  • 28 June 2022 – Neptune goes retrograde in Gate 36 line 3
  • 4 December 2022 – Neptune goes direct in Gate 36 line 1
  • 30 June 2023 – Neptune goes retrograde in Gate 36 line 6
  • 6 December 2023 – Neptune goes direct in Gate 36 line 3
  • 10 April 2024 – Neptune goes into Gate 25 for the first time
  • 2 July 2024 – Neptune goes retrograde in Gate 25 line 2
  • 30 September 2024 – Neptune goes back into Gate 36.6
  • 7 December 2024 – Neptune goes direct in Gate 36 line 5
  • 10 February 2025 – Neptune goes into Gate 25

© Love Your Design 2021