The Rewards of Effortful Love, Venus’ New Cycle & Chiron’s Prescriptions
If you want to see the sign and degree of the planets in your own or any other natal chart – so you can check these against the signs and degrees important this week – here’s the link to Astrotheme. Enter your data into the boxes provided:
The Astrology Blog 25 February 2019
All times given are stated in GMT
‘Love is not effortless. To the contrary, love is effortful…. Since love is work, the essence of non-love is laziness.’
M Scott Peck, The Road Less Travelled
This last week has been tough for a lot of people. Venus’ annual conjunctions with the heavy mob Saturn and Pluto are definitely not easy to navigate. I found myself surrounded by in extremis women (Venus) friends, near and far, including a bereavement, two major relationship break-ups and two health crises. These are the kind of things that we can’t fix. The knee jerk reaction to go into solution-finding mode is of no use and, further, is not what’s required.
If astrology teaches us anything it’s that we are all apportioned our good times – and our bad. When you are the one on the outside looking in, it’s a time for effort (Saturn) and digging deep (Pluto). And being there, for entering into that other person’s world, for feeling their pain or fear, for finding your own resilience, being grateful for it, knowing that it enables you to go that extra mile.
Because whatever we can’t fix, we can ease, not with platitudes, but with effort. And it doesn’t have to be of the Herculean type. Be willing to change your own plans at a moment’s notice and to swing into action.
Make a phone call, listen, listen without interjecting with your own stuff, do the shopping, cook a meal, walk a dog. I know from my own experience that these are the things that really count. And the real reason why they count is not just because these things are genuinely needed, but because these things all involve effort. This is love.
The Road Less Travelled
If you’ve never read M Scott Peck’s The Road Less Travelled, do yourself a favour and get a copy immediately. If you’ve got a copy, re-read it. He is brilliant at explaining and demonstrating why love is not a feeling, and why we confuse dependency for love.
He defines real love, for a couple, as the moment when they know they have the ability to exist without each other. Love is separateness. The whole thesis of the book is to show that healthy love springs from effort and discipline, from how we extend ourselves, shown in our actions and not in our words. And how this is the basis of emotional and spiritual growth.
So the person who is never available when you need something, the one who says oh, well, um, I will if I can, the one who makes you feel that the simplest of requests is an imposition or an inconvenience, the one who never seems to get around to doing the things they’ve promised, the one who just melts away when things get tough. This person is not loving, simply because their actions show that their world, even when yours is in meltdown, is still about them and not about you.
They may protest that they love you, but when the feeling is not translated into action, this according to Scott Peck’s definition is “non-love”. The state of wanting to experience the feelings of love but without the work. He also devotes a lot of space to explaining why this kind of wanting can never be satisfied – it’s just a bottomless black hole of yearning because it’s not about love, it’s about dependency. Food for thought!
Venus and Mars
Astrologically this definition invokes the love planets who are also about this area of often very fuzzy conflict. Venus (how we relate, the people and things to whom we’re attracted) and Mars (action, how we work/do things, how we desire and pursue). Both of these planets are in the news this week, starting with a harmonious sextile (two signs apart) between the Sun and Mars:
Thursday 28 February
Sun 9 Pisces sextile Mars 9 Taurus 02.34
So, if ever there was a prime time for effort, this week is it. This is a brilliant combination for getting to work, on anything – from a relationship, to a diet, to your garden!
Mars is said to be in his sign of “detriment” in Taurus (as he rules the opposite sign of Scorpio), and it can be heavy handed, overly stubborn or a bit of a bull in a china shop. But if you want to get down to the grass roots of anything and get your hands dirty, literally or metaphorically, this Mars is your man.
The opposite sign of Scorpio is the silent sleuth type energy, all about the invisible and the psychological – but Taurus is Fixed Earth. It’s all about the visible and the senses, what you can touch, taste, feel, hear, see, go to bed with.
This Mars (person/energy/modus operandi) is the Rock of Gibraltar, favouring dependability, perseverance, plodding forwards and seeing things through to the bitter end. It’s the “salt of the earth” type. About nurturing and growing things, and it will be there when everything else has crumbled.
Mars and the Sun
So this week marries all this Mars stuff to the Sun (illumination, the life force, creativity) – in the gentle, uncontainable and sometimes elusive or fickle water sign of Pisces.
This sign is also linked to romanticism. But in keeping with this week’s theme let’s keep the yearning and dreaming bit in a box for later. If you’ve got relationship issues it’s time to talk about what you want each other to DO – especially in connection to the material concerns of money and provision, and the practical demands of day to day living, such as division of labour.
Mars in Taurus can get very stuck but is about pulling our weight, which he does awesomely when he gets going. If you’re with a couch potato or if you’re stuck in a rut, it might be time for a bit of dynamite.
This is echoed by the Venus activity at the end of the week, with one more explosive aspect to come before she changes sign:
Friday 1 March
Venus 29 Capricorn square Uranus 29 Aries – 12.33
Venus ingress Aquarius – 16.40
Note that this is also the last aspect received by slow moving Uranus (84 year cycle, Venus 1 year cycle) before he too changes sign.
He’s already entered Taurus once, but then turned retrograde and went back into Aries, but this is now the real home stretch. Here’s the Uranus sequence:
- 16 May 2018 – Uranus ingress Taurus
- 7 August 2018 – Uranus turned retrograde at 2.33 Taurus
- 6 November 2018 – Uranus returned to Aries
- 6 January 2019 – Uranus turned direct at 28.36 Aries
- 6 March 2019 – Uranus ingress Taurus 2nd time (will not return to Aries again)
So if you have planets or angles at 0 degrees of any sign but especially the Fixed signs of Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius, this is a time of great change for you.
Venus squaring up to Uranus is on this occasion a double finale and paves the way to a new era. In what way?
- Venus rules love, women, money, life’s pleasures
- Uranus rules the unexpected, suddenness, electricity, shocks, shock tactics, splits
Volatile and Sparky Combination
Whichever way you look at it this is a highly volatile and sparky combination. Especially as Venus is in Capricorn, sign of caution, tradition, reputation and “should”.
Whereas Uranus is the rebel, all fired up in the very last stages of go-getting, individualistic Aries.
We can expect events that show anywhere on the register from major disruption or excitement to events that are annoying, disappointing – or just plain whacky.
On the major scale look out for things like:
- One almighty argument
- Deciding that this is The Last Time you’ll allow yourself to be let down by someone
- News or information that dramatically changes your outlook, opinion or plans, or
- The straw that breaks the camel’s back in any relationship or situation that is already in a tailspin.
- A love affair that’s been struggling to happen, especially if one of you has still to separate from an existing partner, may reach the last chance stage.
- Or a brand new attraction could catch you off guard.
On the minor scale expect things like:
- Losing something valuable
- Something that you’d relied on coming unstuck or
- Things just generally not going according to plan.
Be extra vigilant with your belongings when you’re out and about.
Venus’ New Journey
Venus’ new journey starts just hours later and, back to the original point about real love not being a feeling, Venus in Aquarius would wholeheartedly support that philosophy.
This is an air sign, element of the mind and the intellect, and promotes being clever and intelligent when dealing with our emotional needs and all affairs of the heart.
This Venus is cool about love, and not about expressing ourselves with too much passion even when we privately feel very strongly.
As much as I hate the expression, I think this Venus is about “playing the game”.
This means not wearing your heart on your sleeve too quickly, being patient and building things slowly – especially with regard to intellectual interests and a shared social scene.
This Venus often starts a relationship on the basis of friendship first, lust second, and places great value on compatibility.
No jumping into bed on a first date lol! However, unusual connections can also spring up at this time, such as being attracted to someone who is definitely not “your type”.
So be broadminded. Venus will be traveling through Aquarius until 26 March so how a new romance unfolds during this time will count for a lot.
Chiron ingress Aries
I neglected to mention another big astrological event which was Chiron’s change of sign, and thanks to one of my students, Diccon who brought that to my attention.
Chiron has a cycle of approximately 50 years. But has an extremely irregular orbit, which means that he spends a lot more time in some signs than in others. Anywhere from about 18 months to 9 years.
Chiron’s longest journeys are those through Pisces and Aries (8 to 9 years). And is therefore at his quickest when going through the opposite signs of Virgo and Libra.
As a general rule of thumb the slower moving the planet, the more significant the life events it reflects. So putting it another way, planets or angles in Pisces/Aries rather draw the short straw as far as Chiron is concerned.
Monday 18 February
Chiron ingress Aries – and will be travelling through this sign until 2027
- 1 April 1968 – the date of the last time Chiron entered Aries
If you are about 50 years old you will have Chiron in the early degrees of Aries. Hence will be experiencing your Chiron Return
We know Chiron as the Wounded Healer. He can signify times of illness, but more usually I have found him to be about emotional experiences and healing. Melanie Reinhart writes his importance lies in how:
“…he points to the issues that accompany the path of awakening, such as health crises, life-changing experiences, meetings with teachers, recapitulation of old trauma or major insights”.
Read more in her book Chiron and the Healing Journey.
As with Uranus about to re-enter Taurus for the second time, Chiron’s ingress into Aries is also the second time. Here’s the sequence of his recent and current journey:
- 18 April 2018 – Chiron ingress Aries first time
- 6 July – Chiron turned retrograde 2.25 Aries
- 10 December 2018 – Chiron turned direct 27.54 Pisces
- 18 February 2019 – Chiron enters Aries for the second time (will not return to Pisces)
- 8 July 2019 Chiron turns retrograde at 5.56 Aries
- 14 December 2019 – Chiron turns direct at 1.26 Aries
This ingress into Aries coincides with Venus changing sign. So she is the first planet to catch up with Chiron also on his new journey:
Saturday 2 March
Venus 0 Aquarius sextile Chiron 0 Aries 06.55
So, events at the end of the week are likely to bring pointers about the meaning wrapped up in this transition.
Aries is the sign of the individual. It is in many ways like The Fool in the tarot. Not idiot, but one starting on the path to spiritual wisdom and wholeness. So, there may be a connection to the wound of identity and sense of self. It reminds me of the words in Desiderata, “you have a right to be here”.
In our culture we tend to use “egoism” as a dirty word. It’s a dangerous monster when you see it out of control (Donald Trump) – but healthy egoism is a different matter.
You do exist, you do have your own needs, desires and dreams, and you have your own destiny.
Your happiness is about you, not about someone else (dependency).
0 degrees of “I am” Aries is the brand new start. It’s the blank slate and the springtime of making healthy choices in connection to personal development and entitlement.
It’s never too late to cut the ties that bind and escape the repression, the things that hold you back from being the best possible you. Whether it’s a current situation or early imprinting.
Better to wake up to this now, rather than wait for our bodies to start expressing the dis-ease.
Wishing you good health in all respects,
With love from Greece