About Venus Retrograde

(An Excerpt from my 7-week class: Deconstructing the Myth of Soulmate)

On October 5, Venus stationed retrograde in Scorpio. Her six-week journey to the depths ends this Friday, November 16.
I’ve been guiding a deep-dive in the form of a class called “Deconstructing the Myth of Soulmate.” The class has written lessons each week, and I’ve taken to posting excerpts for my Patrons.  I wrote something last week, however, that felt like it needed to go out to a broader audience, so I’m posting it below in its edited form. Hopefully it’s helpful to some of you as Venus slows down.
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Venus in Libra is very much listening and learning, comparing and contrasting and concerned with keeping the peace through diplomacy and consideration. Venus in Libra teaches us about compromise. Not self-sacrifice. Compromise.

During the current part of the retrograde, Venus as Morning Star has some ferocity to her. But she’s also tempered a bit by that Libran graciousness (or so I’m told). The real negotiation might not happen until after she’s stationed direct, but right now, we are learning more clearly about what we need, and the ways we deny that.

If I could distill Venus Retrograde down to one key point, it would be this:
It is a time when we learn to love ourselves a little better. 

The week of October 27th was likely an intense one for many. The switch between Scorpionic Venus and Libran Venus is a dynamic one.

In the Greco-Roman version of Venus’ mythology, she is confronted with a decision when she arises from the clamshell: she has to choose between living in the ocean (which represents the unconscious and the emotional body), or living in the air (her mind; the thinking function).

Venus as natural ruler of Libra is very much about that choice between the head and the heart. Weighing pros and cons, evaluating, making value judgements that arise from the unconscious world of feelings and the mind.

In Kathleen Burt’s book Archetypes of the Zodiac, she discusses the ways Venus’ decision to live in the air is reflective of that element of compromise that is so important to Libra. Although sometimes Libran types can get over analytical and stuck in inertia from understanding all sides, Libran Venus is also indicative of the parts of us that remember how to take the head and the heart into consideration and reconcile them.

Libran Venus wants to make decisions that are in the best interests of all. That’s a pretty lofty ideal — and one that sometimes works. But it doesn’t always work, and it can lead to codependence in many forms. This is where, when we’re stuck in considering everyone’s everything, we sometimes need to pull on the Aries/Mars polarity, which focuses on the self. This helps to bring us away from passiveness, not quite to aggressiveness, but into assertiveness. We meet in the middle.

Most of you taking this class have Pluto in Libra [edit: those born approximately 1973-83/4]. Pretty much everyone taking this class has Libra somehow magnified in their karmic patterns. So I do want to talk about one thing that’s really key.

Folks with Libra karma are inherently attuned towards considering everyone else’s everything, often before they consider themselves. This might be a conscious thing or not. Folks with Libra karma have lifetime after lifetime of surrendering their own sense of self for the sake of the other. These are huge themes and not always straight forward.

Imagine the toll it takes to fall in love and get married, only to have a partner come down with a chronic illness that requires you to be their lifelong caretaker.

Imagine what it’s like to be sold off into slavery — or marriage — after being raised to believe that what you want does not matter and that you are to act a certain way, perform certain roles, and put all of your dreams and desires aside.

Imagine growing up in an abusive family where you learn to be acutely attuned to every single shift in the emotional landscapes around you in order to keep the peace.

Imagine being raised in royalty, knowing you will assume the throne, and being groomed as such. No one cares what you want or who you are down at your core, they care about the role you will play.

After lifetimes of these kinds of experiences, it becomes very difficult to locate one’s core sense of self. Distorted Libra can feel like a perpetual identity crisis.

Now, imagine living with that kind of patterning in a society that touts unconditional love as the end all be all when really… what you need is to develop discernment and boundaries that are protective of yourself. Especially in situations where you are being misused, misled or abused. Boundaries that help you to become re-empowered.

What if conditional love isn’t quite an enemy for someone with patterns of self-sacrifice? Perhaps it’s not a bad thing but a necessary thing for some of us some of the time.

What if interdependence in relationships with likeminded folks who are also learning about who they are was taught as an integral part of relating, rather than so much reliance on playing the roles that the Other needs played, so that we feel we have a place? It can be difficult to live life when you’re playing roles that someone else needs you to be, rather than living through the shifting drama of becoming who you actually are.

Just something to think about.