Actually, the title is a bit misleading in that the Venus retrograde cycle is composed of eight phases, one of which has already begun. It is called the ‘Shadow’ period and sets up the coming retrograde period itself. First, I’ll describe the relevant dates and positions.
Venus will turn retrograde at 10° Scorpio on October 5, 2018 and move back to 25° Libra on November 16th. In other words, Venus will be retrograde for about 6 weeks. Venus goes retrograde only once every 19 months, so when it does, its effects are significant. The reason is that Venus will pass through this 15° territory three times, greatly intensifying our experiences in this area of our chart. Further, it will be in this territory between September 3rd and December 2nd, which is 12 weeks. Please take a moment and sense what this might mean. Venus matters will be in high focus for that entire period and the retrograde part is only part of it. The ‘Shadow’ period, which runs from Sept. 3rd to Oct. 5th is the introduction of the cycle and whether we realize it or not, the issues we will be facing and reviewing are already coming up for us.
The Nature of Venus
This archetypal force rules the principle of attraction and repulsion, what we desire to bring towards us and push away. It tells us a lot about the kind of relationships we seek to have in our life and what needs they may provide. But, going deeper Venus rules the process by which we discover our values, priorities, and those parts of our life that matter the most to us.
Venus is a personal planet in that it is located between the Sun and our earth, so it rules our internal attitudes and style of relating with others. For example, Venus in Aries relates in a spontaneous and passionate way, initiating and going after what it desires as feelings rise and fall quickly. Being a personal planet Venus is internal, even private, so we need feedback from others to know whether or not our way of relating with others is only about us or if it takes the other person into account. Astrologers think of Venus as a harmonizing principle and in certain signs, such as Libra, it may be. But, this is too simplistic. Venus can also be very self-focused, even narcissistic and not feel concern for others. It’s how we like and dislike or love and hate. Yet, do we ask about the other person, the object of our feelings? How do we treat them? This is Venus’ challenge. When it operates best we are always evaluating our way of relating in each encounter and trying to live in love rather than ‘ego’ (self-focus) or fear. We must learn that relating is not just about getting our way.
I wrote a lengthy article on the last Venus retrograde in 2017 which you might want to read here. The central theme of Venus in retrograde is that “one is motivated to assess one’s values and priorities, and to discover what matters to us most. This assessment process is mostly operating in our relationships and economic life, but that covers a lot of territory. We will tend to turn inward and ask new kinds of questions that run the range of “Do I really need that new car I would like to buy”, to deeper questions such as “What is love?” or “Why do I care for a particular person?” It is also likely to lead to looking at boundaries we have with friends, family and loved ones to determine if the nature of those relationships is allowing us to be who we are and to be free to pursue what we feel we need. In other words, Venus retrograde brings up many questions regarding our needs, wants and desires in just about every aspect of our lives as we try to discover what is truly important.”
The ’Shadow’ period
The more I observe this period, especially in the Venus and Mars retrograde cycles, the more importance I give to it. The effects are subtle, even unconscious. Yes, Venus has moved into the area that it will retrograde back into, but what that means is that the relevant issues are now presenting themselves, though we might not realize it. One way this can manifest is that since unconscious factors in the psyche are coming to consciousness, one might find oneself saying things that seem out of context, making a mountain out of a molehill, etc. While the issues in themselves may be small, the energy behind them are not. This is how we can begin to work with Venus retrograde before it starts. We can pay attention to the issues that are coming into focus now and do what you can to make them conscious and not ‘project’ them out onto a loved one. Over the years, I have seen and heard stories about people blowing up at another person during this period and not know why things have gotten so exaggerated. But, these events are not as random as they appear. Further, something might be possible now that will help us as things unfold during the next few months. We can make an effort to be as conscious as possible and try to understand what issues we need to face. The more conscious we are, the more able we will be to address them.
Reduced Rates on Counseling
The best way to know how an individual may be affected by this Venus retrograde period is by knowing what House this transit is in one’s own chart. This requires knowing the time of one’s birth. To help as many people as I can to use this important time to improve their relationships and work on any other issues, I am offering individual and couples counseling for a reduced charge of $100 between now and Dec. 3rd. You may contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and, if you give me your number I will contact you as soon as possible.