The coming Venus retrograde cycle takes place in Capricorn and so is ruled by Saturn. Venus and Saturn combinations can work in different ways – Saturn can constrict and cool Venus, dampening her joyful and expressive nature and turning us in upon ourselves, into a kind of prison of loneliness and isolation. Saturn can also give concrete form to Venus’s desires, her love of beauty, of expression, of connection and relationships. Saturn can also curtail Venus’s innate vanity bringing greater consideration of others and a willingness to love selflessly. The danger with the Venus retrograde in pragmatic Capricorn is that as Venus moves backwards she retreats into an inner world of separation, isolation and depression. The opportunity is that she comes to understand some deeper and more meaningful truth about herself and her ability to make things real, give her dreams and visions substance. As Venus moves into her shadow in mid November these are the challenges that will face us. This message is emphasised by the placement of Saturn at key points during the retrograde cycle, and also by the relationship to Eros, the urge to give form and physical manifestation to the desires of the psyche.
Venus enters shadow
As Venus enters her shadow Eros sits on the degree that marks where Mars will enter his own shadow over the coming months. In Venus-ruled Libra this points towards a desire to make real and tangible a yearning for connection, for relationship, for recognition of something outside ourselves. Meanwhile Psyche has just passed opposite the inferior conjunction degree of the last Venus retrograde cycle, this sheds light on issues of relationships that were explored then. Somewhere deep within ourselves a desire for connection or re-connection is awoken and this time Venus moves in a place where she can be supported in bringing this to fruition. Saturn teeters on the edge of his own shadow – the stage is set, the players are ready…
Venus station retrograde
As Venus reaches her stationary retrograde degree Eros has reached the North Node, the path of future karma. This is the degree that Venus will have reached one year from now as Saturn finally leaves his shadow – desires and actions set in motion now will unfold over the coming months, and with suitable Saturnian application and hard work can deliver great gifts. The Sabian symbol for this degree is deep sea divers – an image of plumbing great and dangerous depths in order to find something of great value. It reminds me of the point in the myth of Eros and Psyche where Eros has to descend to earth to find the lost and dying Psyche and bring her back to life.
Venus inferior conjunction
The next key point in the cycle is the Venus inferior conjunction which forms a perfect sextile to Saturn and also to Eros. A sextile is an aspect that brings rewards if the effort is put in – another reminder of what we can achieve if we are prepared to put in the hard work. This marks the darkest phase of the Venus retrograde as she moves back towards Pluto and also towards Psyche – the days following the Inferior Conjunction can bring the crystallised understanding of what must be achieved. It may come with a sense of heaviness, of fear, of weariness – the task is hard and much is demanded – and the truth is it could change your life in uncomfortable ways. But if you are to achieve what you have dreamed of then this is what is required.
Venus stations direct
Venus, Pluto and Psyche are together as she turns direct, and they are all opposed by Jupiter indicating some opposition may be felt from people who feel they know better – maybe professional or religious people, or community representatives. Courage and persistence is needed to hold firm to values and not get drawn into arguments. Eros is ruled by Jupiter here indicating another possibility – that you may find unexpected support and that someone who had tried to oppose you actually changes their mind and decides to help you.
Venus leaves shadow
As Venus leaves her shadow both Mars and Saturn have just turned retrograde. Venus has shown what needs to be done, she has confronted her fears and demons, her doubts and uncertainties and if she has been courageous she has put in place all the necessary building blocks that now both Mars and Saturn need to work into something real, something tangible, something more than a dream or a good idea. Jupiter is about to turn direct and confront Pluto again – the power struggles are not over but Venus is moving clear of them, looking towards the fulfilment of the promise which will come with the superior conjunction.
Venus superior conjunction
That superior conjunction takes place just as Saturn is about to leave his shadow (he finally does this as Venus reaches the degree where Eros and the North Node were conjunct). Eros is now in the area which was Venus’s shadow and Psych is moving slowly allowing him to catch up with her. The way is now clear for the story to complete which it does as Psyche and Eros combine in exact square to the Venus retrograde degree of 2012 and opposite the Mars retrograde degree of 2012.
Eros connects with Psyche
The tying together of the retrograde cycles and the playing out of the story of Psyche and Eros reaches completion. Everything has been prepared, we have experienced deep loss and regret, sorrow and despair. We have had inspirations and intuitions of what could be, what we want our relationships with others to be and how we want to make that into a lived, felt, sensed reality – more than just a dream or an idea.
Mars connects with Venus
In a beautifully synchronistic symbolism Venus and Mars now come together right at the beginning of Aries – a new start for relationships! If it’s going to be the start you dream of then ensure you put in the hard graft over the coming months – clarify your ideals, your aspirations, work to make them real so that people can see them in your life as you live it.