Venus/Uranus: Weird Love

IMG_6554Venus and Uranus are getting cozy together in the far reaches of Aries. In a few days – on June 3, to be specific – they’ll form an exact conjunction. That is, from our POV here on Earth, it will look as though the two Planets are occupying the exact same celestial coordinates.

So what does it mean for us humans when the Goddess of Love plants a big cosmic kiss on the Lord of Earthquakes and Lightning Bolts?

Look for your relationship experiences, both romantic and otherwise, to be on the receiving end of a hearty injection of the weird. Uranus is all about the odd, the unique, and the unpredictable. Uranian energy fires up suddenly after phases of apparent slumber, and it has to do with forward progress, innovation, rebellion, nonconformity, and individuality. Infuse all that into your relationship function, and you have a recipe for some unusual dynamics.

These dynamics can manifest in a few different ways. It could be that during this conjunction period, you’ll encounter new people…or it could be that existing relationships with people you already know will undergo change in unforeseen ways. You may be drawn to people at this time largely because they’re different from the norm. You may also feel called to put your energy into those relationships that seem strange in some way. You may even look to new or existing relationships to help you bring out the strangeness and the genius in yourself.

We often fear change, and sudden developments that come with no warning can be even more unsettling…but change isn’t necessarily “bad.” If you find your relationship sphere taking a turn for the weird at this time, instead of resisting, it might be a wise move to try to embrace that weirdness. If your relationship experiences can help you to individuate further – to become more the unique you that you came here to be – then why not accept that as a great gift? For the next week or so, while this conjunction is in effect, you may find that your relationships with others are the gateway toward your own inner revolution of self…

Astro-Watch, April 28th: Venus Enters Aries

Today, our often-demure relationship Planet, Venus, steps across a Zodiac threshold. The Goddess of Love returns from the watery realm of Pisces to cross back over into the fiery terrain of Aries.

She made this particular crossing once already this year, back on February 3rd…but then she turned retrograde a month after that, and retreated back into Pisces on April 2nd, presumably to revisit some of the structures of the relationships we maintain with whatever we consider “Divine.” Pisces does, after all, lend a rather mystical and transcendental flow to anything that might happen to come splashing through its liquid gates.

Today, though, Venus emerges again from that Piscean seascape, and strides with purpose on into the blazing arena of Aries. Since Venus symbolizes the human drive to have relationships, this clearly puts a new spin on our interpersonal dynamics.

Where our relationships down here on Earth may have been backburnered behind our more cosmic connections with the Universe itself for the last month, we’re now at the start of a whole new Zodiac cycle. Brash Venus in Aries is far less dreamy and celestial-minded than Venus in Pisces. It can be helpful sometimes to think of the Planets as people, and the Signs as suits of clothing that those people wear. Using that analogy, it’s like lovely Venus had been outfitted in a portable sensory-deprivation tank and a pair of 5-D glasses, but is today trading those in for combat gear.

Aries is the Sign of the Warrior, so our relationships may reflect this big shift at this time. We may be quicker to anger than usual in our exchanges with others for a while, and more impatient. We might grow more competitive, and more attracted to debating, arguing, or even outright fighting (and then making up afterwards). Relationships may serve as trigger-points for testing our courage in some fashion, and they may be pathways to adventure.

This could also be a time of new relationships appearing – keep in mind, though, that Aries-energy is terrific at starting things, but not so across-the-board excellent at finishing them, so maybe remind yourself that there’s value in seeing things through to their later stages. And Aries can also at times lend a decided air of lust to the proceedings when it can sift its energies into a set of circumstances, so this could be a period of increased desire for you and those around you. Try to keep accurate track of what will stand as legitimate and possibly enduring passion, versus what’s just heat of the moment.

Venus will be fire-walking through Aries until June 6th, when she wanders over the next border into Taurus, which will be yet another very different type of vibe. We’ll get there in a month or so…but until then, see if you can wring some enjoyment out of the bold, direct, forceful frequency of the Sign of the Ram!

Venus Developments…

Venus, named for the Goddess of Love, is currently connected to Saturn, named for a God who thought it would be a great idea to swallow all of his newborn children so they’d never be able to someday rise up and challenge him… This may not bode so well for our relationships at this time!

It seems to be retrograde season for us down here on Planet Earth, what with Mercury, Jupiter, and Saturn all appearing to be moonwalking back along their orbital pathways, and Pluto poised to join them five days from now.

But if you’re the type who fears retrogrades in general, it may be comforting to you to know that today marks the occasion of Venus – which has also been in retrograde motion for the last six weeks or so – stationing direct. “Stationing direct” is the astrologer’s way of saying “That Planet that looked like it was moving backwards is now knocking that off, and returning to good old, regular, forward-style motion.”

In general, retrograde periods are believed to mark intervals during which the energies symbolized by the Planet in question may act in unusual fashion, they can seem to dredge up people and lessons from out of the past, and they can tend to make themselves felt more on our inner landscapes than out in the external world.

With Venus being retrograde, relationships can conceivably take some hits. Person-to-person connections both romantic and platonic can experience short-circuits. Old lovers, old friends, and other former acquaintances can pop up unexpectedly. We can also be called to work on things we’ve been getting wrong with respect to our relationships with ourselves.

But today, Venus appears to us on Earth to be ceasing her backwards trajectory, and returning to forward, direct motion.

As always, I counsel a good, hard look at your own chart to see if this event will have noticeable consequences in your own life. Venus turns direct at the 27-degree mark of Pisces. Do you have any Planets or meaningful Points (Ascendant, Lunar Nodes, etc.) at that location in your own chart? Do you have anything placed at the corresponding spot in any of the other Mutable Signs (Gemini, Virgo, and Sagittarius)? Is Venus one of the more influential Planets in your chart overall…?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then this may be a meaningful occurrence for you.

And if this direct station does make itself known in your life, the results can take on many forms. Your relationships may seem to iron out some of their own wrinkles for you all of a sudden. They may become busier and/or more positive and agreeable in the external world, while some of the soul-searching about interpersonal bonds and self-love may fade a bit in priority.

That all sounds pretty good…but here’s a note of caution… As Venus stations direct, she’s doing so in a spot that forms a strong and somewhat friction-heavy link with Saturn. This link is called a square – squares form between Planets and Points that are 90 degrees or so apart – and they can be powerful connections that seem to give rise to corresponding real world events. And to be honest, Saturn isn’t exactly warm and cuddly by nature even when it makes more user-friendly connections with other Planets!

So what does this mean…?

No guarantees, but for the next two weeks(-ish), even though Venus returns to direct motion, our relationships may all undergo some testing and tempering. Saturn operates much like a keen and tireless auditor combing through your financial records in a search for mistakes. Saturn is kind of cold and rather merciless, and is entirely without sentiment.

The good news is that if you’ve done the work properly in the area that falls under Saturn’s influence, then you’ll have nothing to fear, and you may even reap some rewards and gain greatly in self-confidence in that area for having achieved “job well done” status.

The less good news, though, is that if you haven’t done the work properly when Saturn appears, your errors and shortcomings will most likely be exposed, and there will be some damage control and repair work to be performed in the wake of the visit.

Mapping these ideas onto the relationship arena, it looks possible that until the first week of May or thereabouts, our relationships may seem to fall under the sway of that invisible “auditor” force. Stresses and even the occasional crisis may materialize in our relationships, misfires may occur, and we may take a more fatalistic view of our interpersonal bonds than we would normally do. When not handled skillfully and with honor, Saturn can promote feelings of fear, doubt, isolation, and grave seriousness…and with a tight square connection in effect, these feelings become more likely.

In addition to examining your own chart for placements in the last few degrees of the Mutable Signs, it can also be a great exercise to analyze your own recent real world experiences to see if any of the above has felt applicable to your life. Have your relationships been more difficult than usual, or seemed more gloomy, or even doomed? Have you been feeling defeatist about them? And do you feel any differently today, as Venus stations direct? That change won’t totally offset the square with Saturn, but it might be something you do perceive, and it might arguably ease some of the abrasive feeling of that Venus/Saturn square.

If any of this does feel like it applies to you, then do your best to hang on until the square fizzles out in a bit over two weeks. There will always be some new development looming on the astrological horizon, but we and the people in our orbits will probably be relieved when this particular one passes on…

Love and Astrology

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Are you in the Providence, RI area? Tomorrow (Feb. 14, 2017), in honor of Valentine’s Day, I’ll be putting on a workshop focusing on “Love and Astrology.” This will be a FREE, one-hour lunchtime presentation starting at noon at a great local venue called The Empowerment Factory, which is a part of the Hope Artiste Village arts collective.

I’ll be giving an overview on what Astrology is in general, what the major components of an astrological chart are, and how you can start to analyze your own chart. Given the timing, this session will place special emphasis on Venus, the Planet named for the Roman Goddess of Love. As added incentive, there just may be free handouts…and I’ll definitely be offering a special, hefty discount on a chart reading by me to all attendees!

Also, on Wednesday evening – the day after Valentine’s Day – I’ll be hosting a FREE Reiki share at the same space. The event starts at 6:30pm, and will last for approximately 90 minutes. Whether you’re a Reiki veteran or a total newcomer, you’re invited to join us!

Astrology/Tarot Mapping: The Lovers

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The astrological symbol that you’ll most often find associated with the Lovers card in Tarot is the Sign of Gemini.

In a very superficial way, this association makes some sense. That is, The Lovers can conjure thoughts of two people (i.e., the number it takes to tango)…and Gemini also has to do with a pair of people. At a quick glance, then, these two symbols might seem to have a lot in common.

The similarities don’t really run all that deep, though. For one thing, when The Lovers refers to a pair of people, it’s often a pair of…well…Lovers. Meanwhile, Gemini refers to a pair of Twins. Siblings. Pretty much not lovers. The Lovers card doesn’t only refer to romantic/sexual bonds, but it certainly can. Gemini, meanwhile, is more about exploring information, communication, and interpersonal dynamics of a more detached nature. This isn’t usually the first Sign an astrologer will come up with if asked about romantic archetypes.

Of course, The Lovers is also about concepts such as choice and integration, and a case could be made for these notions to be good correlates for what Gemini is about.

Then again, cases could also be made in favor of entirely different astrological symbols being linked to The Lovers. Maybe something with a more Venusian feel. If not the Planet Venus itself, then maybe the Venus-ruled Sign of Libra would address the romantic possibilities of The Lovers, while also remaining relevant with respect to the “choices” meaning of the card…?

Astrology/Tarot Mapping: The Hierophant

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The most widely used astrological correspondence for the Hierophant card is the Zodiac Sign of Taurus. And this is definitely one of the correspondences that, for me personally, just doesn’t work all that well.

On the one end of the pairing, The Hierophant is a spiritual teacher and go-between, someone who – at least in theory – dedicates their life to helping members of their community in connecting with the Divine. The Hierophant provides structure, support, tradition, and access to accumulated knowledge.

Meanwhile, the other end of the pairing is Taurus. Using an Earth Sign isn’t a bad notion to start with: The Hierophant is in some sense trying to bring the Celestial down to the earthly plane. Taurus, though, doesn’t feel like the best specific choice to me as far as Earth symbols go. Traditionally linked with Venus, the Sign of Taurus has much to do with concepts such as beauty, peace, possessions, sensual pleasures. I’ve heard the argument put forth that a Hierophant is someone you’d seek counsel from in the event that you had issues revolving around Taurus themes, such as materialism or overindulgence in pleasures of a worldly nature…but I guess I prefer my symbolic linkages to be based on affirmative correlations. That is, I’d rather use an astrological symbol that can serve as a sort of synonym for The Hierophant’s presence, not one that flags The Hierophant’s absence.

As with The Emperor’s case, I personally again feel that some reference to Saturn or Capricorn might be the better way to go for this card…

Astrology/Tarot Mapping: The Empress

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It’s pretty commonplace for people to associate The Empress in Tarot with the Planet Venus from Astrology. In fact, the Rider-Waite-Smith version of the card has the Venus symbol built right into it. But is Venus truly a strong astrological association for The Empress?

Venus the Planet takes its name from the Roman Goddess of Love, and in astrological terms, the Planet does represent the kinds of associated concepts you might expect. Venus stands for love and romance, and also any other kind of relationship energy you might imagine. Venus also speaks to things like peace and beauty.

And then there’s The Empress. In Tarot, this card often stands for concepts like growth and fertility, and in many decks, The Empress is even depicted as a woman deep into the latter stages of pregnancy, which reinforces these associations.

So the big question is whether The Empress can also be said to encompass the kinds of romantic love that Venus symbolizes? This would seem to be the biggest sticking point in trying to successfully link Venus with The Empress: how can you hold up a card as the Tarot equivalent of the Planet Venus if that card doesn’t really speak to romantic love, which is a pretty primary pillar of what Venus is all about?

For my part, I feel that this association is okay, but not flawless. I do tend to see The Empress as maybe a bit more maternal than as somebody’s romantic counterpart…and I say that with full awareness that you don’t get pregnant without first engaging in probably some legitimate amount of courtship, and also that we have in the very next card (The Emperor), a character who could very arguably be nominated as a readymade mate for The Empress. But still…when I see The Empress in a reading, I do go to growth and creativity and abundance before I eventually get to any thoughts of romance. And I’m not sure that that’s ideal when trying to connect a card with Venus…