© Lynn Bell
Venus went retrograde on July 22nd, the feast of Mary Magdalene. On this day the Sun sits on the border between the receptive sign of Cancer and Leo, the Sun’s brilliant home. Perhaps that is why Mary Magdalene has been both in the shadows and in the light, demeaned as a former prostitute, exalted as the bride. Venus Retrograde addresses a shift in what is of fundamental importance.
The retrograde of Venus always heralds her upcoming disappearance from the sky, which occurs this time at the very beginning of August. Venus retrograde reminds us of what we have lost; it comes with goodbyes, and sometimes we move away from what we have loved, or those we love are lost to us.
Many have commented on the passing of Sinead O’Connor at age 56. Her piercing voice carried an awareness of long years of societal abuse. Her own fiery Sagittarian Venus squared both Pluto and Uranus as well as Saturn. She never shied from expressing her opinions. It seems she has followed her beloved son Shane, who took his own life on January 7, 2022 during the last Venus Retrograde cycle.
Her story is similar to that of Jane Birkin, so beloved of the French, who died just six days before the retrograde.
With Venus Retrograde, the blue bird of Twitter has been X’d out. I wonder how Jack Dorsey, who helped create Twitter, feels? Venus made a tight square to his Scorpio Sun and Mars as she changed direction.
As Venus turns retrograde, nostalgia arises. Martin Grasser, one of the designers of the original twitter logo, expressed his sadness over the logo’s disappearance, saying “in many ways it represented the best of the internet’s adolescence.”
Venus’s awakening often signals the end of adolescence. Venus retrograde is also symbolically a change in direction.
While Elon Musk has Jupiter at 27° Scorpio, on Dorsey’s Sun and Mars which is normally a favourable contact, he also has Pluto on Jack’s Ascendant. Such a contact may mean many things; here, it erases part of the other’s identity. And more notably Musk has a Leo South Node within a degree of Jack’s Saturn, suggesting a deep-seated story around authority and control.
Venus follows the lost past …
Venus follows the lost past down through the underworld gateway. There she may encounter the dark emotions left undigested from a previous cycle. When the goddess is in the underworld she parlays with her dark sister, the dark sister in all of us.
I recently worked with someone who had been through a deep process of healing and forgiveness after a powerful betrayal which happened eight years ago, the last time Venus retrograded in Leo. Suddenly her rage and restlessness were ignited again. We explored why all this had arisen, following the impulse of both love and destruction. At the heart of it was deep regret, the sense that something precious had been lost and left behind forever.
If you are experiencing this, you may also be doing battle with something in your life that is incompatible with love.
Here are some lines from a Hand Raising Prayer to Ishtar. Ishtar was powerfully connected to Venus in the ancient Middle East, a fiercer version of the Goddess:
Irninītu, the aggressive lion, may your heart calm me down!
May your mind, the furious wild beast, be reconciled with me!
May your kind eyes rest upon me!
May your glowing face look faithfully upon mine!
Drive away the evil hexes of my body! I wish to see your glowing light!
Venus follows the lost past down through the underworld gateway. There she may also find treasures. Perhaps some of the beautiful belongings the goddess has left at each gateway in years past can be retrieved. I notice how people’s paths reconnect at these times, sometimes after a long period of absence. The old joys and sweetness may return, refreshed and cleansed.
I re-found a friend who I hadn’t seen in many years, at the center of her beautiful domain. Her Moon is at 28 Leo, the exact degree of the retrograde. Each passage of Venus retrograde may help us to reconnect with an aspect of ourselves that has been put aside for a time. Sometimes it brings us into the greater circle of connection with others.
In Leo, Venus speaks to what rules our heart …
In Leo, Venus speaks to what rules our heart and crowns our sense of well-being.
As you touch into Venus over the next five weeks, pay particular attention to the day of her conjunction with the Sun, August 13th. Here in the blazing heart of consciousness, a new love is born.
Venus will re-emerge in late August / early September as the Morning Star, reborn. She turns direct September 6th. On September 19th she will blaze at her brightest in the morning sky.
I am delighted to be teaching in Borrego Springs at the end of September, where the skies are meant to be so clear and dark that the lights of the heavens shine with particular brightness. More information can be found here: https://www.astro-bash.com
Very soon I will be sending information about a three part series I am teaching for Astrology University on Family Patterns and Astrology beginning September 23rd.