Create Something Beautiful: Venus Retrograde in Leo 2015

Beauty by Kathy Crabbe, 2015. 
Venus Retrograde in Virgo/Leo
July 25, 2015- Sept. 6, 2015

Retrograde cycles of Venus and Mars are the rarest of planetary backtracks. Venus turns retrograde every year and a half. Mars turns retrograde every two years. Mercury, of course, we know turns retrograde every three months, three times a year. Many outer planets are retrograde for lengthy amounts of time, long enough to not really notice them (with maybe the exception of Jupiter and Saturn). Retrogrades, by their archetypal nature, have an inward and introverted quality.

The reason for this, symbolically speaking, is obvious. Astrological symbolism is quite literal. When a planet appears to be moving backwards, its usual function is inverted. A retrograde urges us to reflect and look into the past. And retrogrades bring us some interesting insights about the nature of time. Modern physics suggests that time is ultimately an illusion and that it’s malleable, although it doesn’t allow us to actually change the past, not in a literal, concrete sense. But retrograde cycles seem to open a kind of portal within the conscious life narrative that allows one to “go back” (metaphorically speaking) to tie up loose ends and learn from past decisions.

Venus retrograde, in particular, has an uncanny connection with dredging up issues from the past in relation to current relationships and commitments. As you may know, I’m an evolutionary astrologer. That means that I entertain the hypothesis (or theory, depending on what you consider testable) of reincarnation. I think that something animates the body and that it continues to exist when we die. I believe that some part of me, maybe not my ego, but some part of my psyche has always existed and will continue to exist long after I do in my current form.

In my experience of Venus retrograde, I can say that there has been an unusual pattern of meeting “new” people who seemed terribly familiar. This doesn’t always happen with each retrograde, but it has happened enough times to get my attention. There is also a pattern of reconnecting with past relationships from this life, as well as a period of sorting through some heavy “karma” in your current relationships. Venus is the most potent symbol for love and relationships we have in our astrological pantheon, as Venus correlates with our instinct to relate and bond with other sentient beings.

This is the Libra side of Venus. But Venus has another side which correlates with its planetary rulership of Taurus and its natural association with the second house. The Taurus side of Libra deals with issues of money, possessions, personal values, and the pleasures of the body—the inner animal. When Venus turns retrograde, you will have a chance to reevaluate your relationships, commitments, personal values, desires, and the resources that help you to survive in the world.

Each time a planet goes retrograde, especially an inner planet, it brings about a change in the flow of things that relate to that archetype. In other words, there is often a reversal of direction, priorities, values, and goals during these times. With Venus, these changes relate outwardly to your personal as well as professional relationships and inwardly to your self-worth and personal values. Retrogrades are a time to reassess and reflect on these things more deeply than you would otherwise.

Venus retrograde is a time to gain perspective on your current commitments and relationships as well as how well you are handling yourself practically in the world. Current relationships may go through a process of reevaluation. You may begin to see certain flaws that you were oblivious to before. This is not a time of action regarding your relationships. Meaning, it’s a time to absorb and reflect on what you see in others and decide what to do about them when Venus turns direct (you may want to hold off on filing those divorce papers just yet, or running off to Vegas to get hitched in a drive thru). Be wary of Venus’ darker side during this time. You may have difficulty looking past glamorous façades and may be easily seduced by appearances.

This usually pertains to new relationships that begin during the retrograde, as well as things you decide to invest in or purchase. Your judgment is not likely to be as sound and discerning as usual. But don’t take this to mean that a new relationship or investment that begins under the retrograde is doomed to fail. It means that you need to look at things more realistically and to be cautious of anything that seems too good to be true. Venus retrograde is a natural cycle that reveals that time is ultimately non-linear. Venus shows us that our relationships are multi-dimensional and when she turns retrograde she lures us into the underworld to glimpse the deeper workings of karma that are beyond our limited perception.

Venus retrograde seems to be more pronounced if it stations retrograde or direct on a trigger point in your chart, i.e. a dynamic planetary placement or angle of the chart (first, fourth, seventh, or tenth house cusps). If this happens, you can likely expect to endure a significant and life altering event in relation to the nature of the placement that is activated. Venus stations are powerful predictive tools, and when used consciously with intention, you can use them as opportunities to change your life for the better. If you are personally impacted by a Venus station, look back eight years prior. You will find a similarity to what happened to you then.

This is because Venus stations in the same vicinity of the zodiac every eight years. Her retrograde cycles form an almost perfect pentagram or rose-shaped pattern in the sky. It’s no wonder we associate beauty and symmetry with Venus. As she moves back and forth through the zodiac, she weaves a pattern that is emblematic of the ideal of perfection. She weaves our fate and connects us to seemingly disparate moments along the timeline our souls are currently traveling. Her eight-year cycle sets us on a new course and path that will unfold and develop over time.

The crescendo of any Venus retrograde comes with the “inferior” conjunction of the Sun and Venus, which will occur onAugust 15. The word inferior sounds like a “bad” conjunction, but don’t let those old astrologers and their jargons scare you. We call it inferior because when Venus is retrograde, she is directly between the Sun and Earth—like the pickle in the middle. There’s no shame in that. It might be a little cramped, but it sets up a space of deeper intimacy and connection. That sounds good, right? The converse conjunction is called a “superior” conjunction. While it’s certainly different (because Venus isn’t retrograde) it’s not any better than an inferior conjunction.

Eric Francis, over at Planet Waves, likes to call them interior conjunctions, and I like that term a lot better too. It is these interior conjunctions that actually create the pentagram in the sky (as perceived from our geocentric perception). And it is the interior conjunction that holds the real power and magic of Venus retrograde. You may also check to see whether you have any significant planets or angles at 22 degrees of Leo where this interior conjunction occurs and equally reflect on the past eight years and what has unfolded for you since the last conjunction (August 18, 2007).

Venus retrograde lasts for approximately 40 days and 40 nights. That’s interesting, isn’t it? If you’re privy to biblical lore you will notice the connection to the biblical story of the exodus (it also shows up in other archaic mythologies). I’m not going to get into that, but I will say that it likely originates from this very cycle of Venus. Venus retrograde is a time when Venus literally switches from either rising or setting with the Sun. After this particular interior conjunction, Venus will transform from an evening to a morning star.

We know that Venus retrograde will lure us deeper into ourselves and into our relationships. A lot of scary stuff can happen here. That’s perfectly natural. We may see things we don’t want to see. We may experience things we thought we wanted to experience, but then realize it may not have been for the best or what we really desired. But then, that’s how we learn. And here is the heart of Venus retrograde. Have you learned from your mistakes? Have you acquired the wisdom and consciousness needed to move past making decisions that take you to the same dark, soul deadening places? Only you can really know this.

During this potentially magical time, you may meet some “new” people you may have met before. Reincarnation would be a good way to explain these connections. You may go through something in a current relationship that, again, seems oddly familiar. Have you been to this junction before? You just might have, in this life or perhaps another. The power of this cycle lies in understanding your power—the power of free will. You can make choices. And guess what? You can make choices that aren’t the same ones you’ve made before. Imagine that. And so, as you embark on this rare astrological event, choose to make a different choice and transmute this karma for good (but be kind to yourself, admit your humanity and imperfections).

Venus tells us symbolically through her stations and “inferior” conjunctions that we will meet in this place again. Around and around we go, until we wise up and move on. This is a fertile time for not only love and relationships, but for creativity. And that’s what we’re doing here, right? We’re creating something. You may have forgotten that, but it’s true. You’re creating your life story. And every decision you make reflects how conscious and aware you are that you even have one--a destiny, a purpose, a mission in life. So, choose to create something beautiful. That’s all that Venus wants, isn’t it? She wants to make the world a beautiful and more harmonious place. 

Venus Retrograde Logistics

Venus turns stationary retrograde (will begin to move backwards) on July 25, 2015 @ 0 Virgo 46.

Venus will conjoin the Sun and form an “inferior” conjunction on August 15, 2015 @ 22 Leo 39’.

Venus will turn stationary direct (move forward again) on September 6, 2015 @ 14 Leo 23’.

The Brightest “Stars” in the Sky

If you pay attention to the sky, you may have noticed two bright objects together just past sunset. Those aren’t stars, but planets. Venus and Jupiter conjoined in tropical Leo on June 30/July 1 (depending on your time zone). I point you to the sky because it’s the best way to see the direct correlation of astronomical and life events so clearly in real time. In Leo, these two “lucky” planets sent a wave of creative energy into the collective psyche. You may have felt that. Jupiter and Venus have also been expanding and inflaming your connections and relationships. Take a look at the house that Venus and Jupiter conjoined (21 Leo), and you will notice relationships expanding in that department somehow. Its effect will be quite uncanny. 

Venus and Jupiter will conjoin three times this year. The first conjunction, as I said, occurred on June 30/July 1. The second conjunction will occur on August 4 (with Venus retrograde), and the third conjunction will occur on Oct. 25 (in Virgo). That’s a lot of expansive, heart opening, creative mojo to deal with this year. First off, let’s talk about the heart. We know that in order to genuinely love others, we have to be open to giving and receiving love….and ultimately, we have to love ourselves. When you open your heart, you make yourself vulnerable. Loving someone, whether romantically or platonically, involves a risk—the risk of getting hurt.

That’s always a scary thing to consider when we first embark upon a commitment with someone. Love can heal us but it can also hurt us—sometimes leading us to destruction and suffering.That is because love is pure creative energy and ultimately it is power. Creative energy can create and it can destroy. So, we must be cautious, mindful and compassionate here. We must admit that to love we must risk getting hurt. When we open our hearts to others, we are opening ourselves up for both joy and pain. There’s no getting around that. Expanding your heart will allow for love to enter, but it also exposes the wounds that may reside there: the old pain and heartbreak you put aside to get on with your life.

These three conjunctions of Venus and Jupiter will likely correlate with the need to expand your capacity to love in some way, but it will equally expand those places within your heart that experienced the dark side of love as well—the heartbreak and rejection. There’s a saying that states that when you love and get hurt, to keep on loving. And when you get hurt again, love more. Continue loving until the love in your life overpowers the pain. This is a metaphor for what you may encounter, depending on how personal these three conjunctions are for you (relative to their contact with specific points in your chart). Collectively speaking, 

Venus and Jupiter are offering us an opportunity to include more love and creative joy in our lives and to open that vulnerable place within to heal our wounds too.
And when these two planets come together, they invite us to take some risks. We should be mindful of the tendency to overdo things, to give and love too much so that we lose ourselves in the process. If you’re prone to going overboard in that department, be mindful of what you are getting yourself into. We are in a cycle that invites us to try something new, to put ourselves out there in regards to giving and receiving love. It’s time to be clear and ask for what you want. Take some bold steps but also be mindful of vanity traps and facades concealing empty promises.

The other side of Venus (as I discussed above), correlates with talents that become valuable resources that help us survive in the world. Consider that potentially some resource may be growing alongside your relationships too. So, take a look at what is unfolding in your life right now. This is what you have chosen to work through. Know that whatever is transpiring in this moment, you will come back to. We will come to this place again. Take your time with this process. And when in doubt, just keep on allowing love to enter your life, in whatever shape or form it manifests. Love is truly a transpersonal force, a force that we can only glimpse in this density/reality. I feel that it is a force that binds the universe, and it will guide us, ultimately, to wholeness. Do you trust the flow of love in your life? Reflect on that. It will reveal much to you.

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