While we have focused as of late on the Mars retrograde cycle, which is still in effect and the even tougher aspect of Saturn squaring Pluto, beginning this week Venus is rising to get our attention. But this is a less personal Venus since it will have a very Piscean tone to it. It may start out feeling a bit subtle, but it will be gaining strength in the next week. It began by conjuncting Neptune on Sunday, February 6th at 25 degrees of Aquarius and then will amplify its Neptunian ambiance as it enters Pisces on February 11th, 2010 (the ruler of Neptune) and then conjuncts expansive Jupiter at 7 Pisces on February 16th. Not only does this conjunction occur in Pisces, but Jupiter is the co-ruler of this compassionate water sign and Venus is exalted in it as well. We are about to experience this archetypal energy in a very powerful way.
Of course you’re asking what this means and I must tell you a brief story. Last night in class, a student expressed the fact that she has a very hard time understanding and talking about Pisces. Then, another student who has the Moon in Pisces in her birth chart, said, “I know, even I do too!” The reason for this is that this sign is such a dissolving archetypal form, that it defies and must defy simple verbal definition. It literally rules the principle of imagination and idealism, so no wonder that when we approach trying to describe it, we find that we must do so by using images, story, metaphor, and so on. The symbol of Pisces is literally two fish looking at or opposing one another, and yet tied together somehow. This immediately evokes the image of contradiction and to those familiar with archetypal transformational symbols, the notion of reconciliation of opposites. Another story that might help is the woman who called me a few days ago and asked me what was ‘up with the stars’ last Sunday. She said she was watching all of the Dr. Drew Celebrity Rehab shows that were on that day. Well, sure enough that was the very day that Venus aligned with Neptune. So why did this show pique her interest? Because Pisces/Neptune rules both drug addiction and the possible rehab/recovery process. But let’s go deeper. Sure, it tests us in intense ways, but it also takes us into a place where we must learn to have compassion for both ourselves and others. I know several people who participate in 12-step programs and do not have specific addictions. For them it is a way of participating in a spiritual process with others who must move towards being able to reach into one’s very bottom of despair, hopelessness and fear and come out the other side as a transformed person. It also represents ‘every-persons’ connection with one’s own human vulnerability, imperfection and even sorrow…. It is sometimes a specific sorrow that pertains to something that has happened to us, but often it is more of an existential sorrow that does not connect to anything we can clearly identify. And it can connect us with whatever we consider to be God, the Divine, or Life itself.
Archetypally, Pisces is the last sign of the zodiac and this itself is quite helpful to us as we attempt to understand this mysterious sign. We can think of life as a building up process that moves us from Aries to the next to last sign, Aquarius. As we grow in concern from oneself, to one’s family, to our relationships with others, and then to society in general, we must finally arrive at Pisces, the symbolic end of the cycle. Because it represents the ending, its aspects must include surrender, letting go and a sense that only we, as individuals can regard the entire cycle as meaningful or not. Sometimes, we see that Pisces can be morose, negative, hopeless and even depressed. It can do all it can to escape the harshness of life and even the sense that it is all meaningless since we all die anyway. But this is exactly where Pisces can ennoble us and take us to new territory. What we are really needing to surrender is our ego attachments to a dying cycle. In doing this we may discover that it is not ‘we’ who are dying, but our identifications that are coming to their inevitable end. Thus, it is Pisces wherein we may encounter our own immortality, but not without a crisis first. That crisis is the result of our having to meet our own mortality and surrender to its inevitability. As we surrender our identifications and even identities, we find that what we are really doing is letting go of all the things we are NOT. It is only then, that we are able to witness what is left when all that we are NOT has dissolved.
One of the ways this can happen to us is through an encounter with the harsh aspects of life. What do people face when they are either in some sort of recovery or in close connection with someone who is? They face BOTH sides of the life cycle. First there is the fear, disgust, desire to flee that always comes with an encounter with people who are at ‘bottom.’ But then, at least for some, there may come the other side, where unconditional love is felt and experienced. It is where we let go of our judgments of self and others and arrive at a deep and profound acceptance of all that is Life. It’s amazing highs and gut-wrenching lows. It is in Pisces where every part of human life is validated, confirmed, and then appreciated and seen as necessary. Not only do we realize that there cannot be highs with lows, but more significantly we see that life without ‘everything-in-it, could not exist. This is the mystical experience of total immersion into all of Life and how we are transformed by this degree of Divine Love and Total Acceptance.
Now that Jupiter has entered Pisces and will soon be followed by Venus, we are going to each of us have a chance to experience this level of love and compassion. But it is also likely that we will also experience the other side as well. In Pisces, ALL of life emerges from the unconscious and while we face the harsh side of life, we can simultaneously also see, sense and experience the deep compassionate side as well. Venus and Jupiter are identified as the higher and lesser benefics, so when they come together, it is generally considered to be a very fortunate time. And they indeed are likely to be. But perhaps it is best if we do not forget that this period could easily take us into an aspect of life that asks us to surrender our judgments and ego-attachments and just BE. Just BE with oneself, with others and with Life. Relationships may indeed form now, but they may take on a tone that is less personal than Venus alone. Venus can be motivated by physical attraction and personal desire. It can express itself as love and beauty in a positive sense, but it is also the Evil Queen who spoke those memorable words – “Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest one of all.” The coming Venus-Jupiter transit is going to have a concern for others that can go way beyond ego- gratification and exemplify the best of what Love can be.
Mundane World – It is likely that although most Republicans are wanting the health care bill to die, under the transits that are going in the next weeks, what is more likely is that the bill will be ‘resurrected’ in a new form. The Mars retrograde has brought about large changes but will probably not end the process completely. The next step will be to find some sort of compromise that at least can be embraced by a larger majority than before. It may be much smaller in scope than it was originally, but some sort of compassionate response will be more wanted now than ever. Also, I suspect there will be an increased willingness to take some actions that will relieve the sorrows of those of us who are the least able to take care of themselves.
As always, I hope many of you will tell us how you are experiencing the upcoming transits. We will all appreciate it.