©May 2010 by Fabienne Lopez
I was struggling with my article about my inner/outer dialogue with Venus. Venus has always been my unlived planet and my writing is very rooted in my personal experience. Hard for me to write about Venus since I do not have a lot of experience with this planet.
Venus is ruled by Libra. But my Venus is in detriment – located in Libra’s opposite sign — in Aries. My Venus is also retrograde – meaning it seems from a geocentric point of view to go backwards in my birth chart. See Wikipedia: retrograde motion. Not a happy placement for Venus, where her qualities, as described in astrology manuals, are in conflict with the qualities ascribed to Aries. Making difficult for me to express both energies in a harmonious way. In astrology when a planet is retrograde, the energy of the planet is experienced in a more subjective, internal way. Thus your experience and expression of the planet’s energy is very unique to you. With Venus retrograde in my natal chart, my concept of beauty is different, comes from a different place, than those around me.
I often use the analogy of a beautiful dress that is slightly tight and scratchy. You love the dress but each time you wear it, it rubs you. After a few hours, you can’t wait to take it off, but you still come back to the dress because you are really attracted to it.
Venus is also part of a T-square with my Moon and Saturn, and is even less happy about these aspects. Her only redeeming strength is her placement in my second house that is naturally ruled by Venus. Technically, this is an ideal astrological position as it promises easy means of livelihood and a great esthetic sense with an eye for fashion and beauty — mostly true, but it is hampered by my T-Square to be fully effective. It feels like a talented dancer choreographing her steps for her a gala performance, dancing, twirling in full blossom creativity with a wooden leg. No way to hide, lose it, or believe the leg is not there. You just have to find a way to use that leg to your advantage, make it your trademark, your special talent that offsets you apart from the other dancers. I need to use to my advantage the fact that my concept of beauty and relationship does not conform to society’s standards and find my own tribe.
The usual descriptions about Venus in Aries have never rung true for me. As I read about it in astrology books and websites, the descriptions seem rushed and short, as if there was not much to say about a Venus in Aries woman. And what I read, I can only vaguely identify with. How is she seductive? How is she sexy? Maybe this is my retrograde Venus speaking. This is my unlived planet.
Then, as beginning astrologer, I learned my Venus was a warrior princess, much like Xena. I can identify myself in her spirit of adventure, her independence and her courage. But my moon in Libra cringes at the lack of perceived femininity, a certain lack of daintiness and coyness. My moon in Libra is sweet, charming, seductive, a true child of Venus, seeking gracefulness, joy and life’s enjoyment. She is put off by Xena’s more combative energy, so opposite her own feminine ideal, making difficult for her to claim this warrior-like quality at all. My moon’s need for meaningful relationships seethes at being confronted with the superficial and sometimes callous way a Venus in Aries can treat her friends, lovers and acquaintances. My Venus in Aries honesty and lack of guile does not provide the necessary balance between the disparate energies of Libra and Aries.
My chart tells the story of my planet’s dispossession. Venus falls in my second house of values and money. My mother was the Venus in the family. She was beautiful. She was my father’s folly — with black hair, almond eyes, high cheekbones and an air of mystery about her. Picture Ava Gardner. She has Venus in Libra, close to the mid heaven. In my child eyes, she was the personification of beauty, charm and grace. I hear her voice, a low sound, much the purring of a cat. I was in awe of her, as any mortal can be of a goddess. When I was a child, she captured my imagination and my feelings. My love for her was exclusive, all encompassing. I loved her with all the passion a child can love. She was my sun and my moon. Literally, as I have my Moon in Libra conjunct her Venus.
To this day there is a degree of adoration and a wanting of fusion with my mother that still makes me irk, says my Sun in Aries in the first house. My Sun in Aries in the first house makes me the counterpoint to my mother.
I was clumsy as she was graceful. I wore glasses while she had excellent eyesight. I had mousy brown hair; she had a glorious mane of jet black thickness. I still see her rolling her eyes each time I would break something, as if she could not believe such a clumsy child was her daughter. Yet, I relished my role as her mirror, being her little companion, giving her adoration and companionship.
But, sometimes, I felt non existent, a mere appendage to my glowing, shining, gorgeous mother, a pawn in her ongoing war with my father. As a payback to my father and to avoid competition with my mother, I undercut my girly-ness, with an ambiguous gender message. And I made myself her favorite. She praised me often for being an obedient child, but never for my beauty.
As I grew up, my Venus/Moon opposition understood that message loud and clear. If I wanted my mother’s attention I was not to compete with her in any way shape or form. Any feeble attempt at discovering my own femininity was not so subtly undercut by her. I still remember her laughter at my fashion experiments! Oh, the shame.
The result of this dark side of Venus/Moon opposition was a schism between the two sides of my femininity. I got stuck with the unresolved and unsettled push and pull of nurture and sex, the security of committed relationship and the lusty pleasures of desire without a clue on how to partner what seemed to me as irreconcilable differences in myself. My discomfort with the dichotomy led me to failed attempts at seduction. My Venus in Aries would lust for the conquest of an unattainable love interest, pursue him with the all the might of her warrior energy, in order to prove her she could it. Only to discover that her Moon was utterly unhappy. What was the point of the conquest, if no relationship was developed, no commitment was made, no vows were uttered. My moon in Libra would then dedicate herself to building relationships, only to realize she was casting herself into her childhood role as a companion – think Victorian romance novels.
I spent most of my adult life responding to the call of my Moon in Libra, ignoring my Venus in Aries, too afraid to answer her summons. “What makes me happy? What makes me feel beautiful and appreciated?” she whispered.
I no longer want to run from her. As I grow older, I feel the need to be more respectful of who I am, and that includes paying attention to my Venus and changing my attitude towards her. In order to do that, I change my perspective. Instead of asking myself what do I want from her, I start by pondering her needs, her interests, her wishes and desires, what she wants and expects from me.
As I reflect on her, I stumble upon Dana Gerhardt article on Venus, Who is Venus? As I read it I discover some much needed guidance, a starting point where I can create a relationship with my Venus and get to know her.
Gerhardt asks, “Wherever Venus is located in your chart, do you make this part of your life beautiful? Do you offer time for sensuous experiences here? Do you allow yourself to open and surrender? Do you laugh, do you appreciate, and are you playful, so that everyone around you is inspired by your joy? Venus’ sign suggests how to decorate her temple, filling it with things that most comfort, honor, and please you. Read her aspects to other planets as stories of her escapades, where she was most delighted or perhaps challenged and even overcome. Let learning about your Venus be an act of pleasure, not a chore. Start with whatever happiness you find in her house and sign and build from that.”
I will embrace my Venus in Aries. This means I am starting my path into the apprenticeship of a sexy warrior and mastering the game of relationships. But I’m scared. I’m not sure if this will get me what I want. I’m not sure if this is the right direction, if I can initiate a dialogue between my conflicting needs. I’m not sure if I will be able to find my necessary flow between these two confluences. But I am committed to my apprenticeship of the sexy warrior, and face my challenges head on. I’ll keep you posted!
Photos Credits: Flickr Creative Commons