The Moon is in Taurus today, applying to square Jupiter in Leo and then slowly applying to oppose Saturn in the last degrees of Scorpio. Meanwhile today the Sun trines Uranus and Venus trines Jupiter (all in fire).
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Since the Moon is in Venus’ sign today, and since Venus is prominent in today’s sky, trining Jupiter in fire, let’s look at Venus a little more in depth.
Venus is one of those planets whose greatest gifts are often looked down upon by various religious or spiritual philosophies. For example. Let’s say that you attend class at a yoga studio. If you’re attending for the sake of the Venusian soul, then you probably enjoy the wood floors, the dim lamp lights, the bare feet, the feeling of your yoga pants hugging your skin. You love the smell of the incense, the beautiful statues, and the hand painted lotus flower on the bathroom wall. You love the way the men look in their warrior poses. You love the way the women put their hair up and wear stretch bands to hold it back. You love the jazzy, Indian music, and you love the various things for sale in the reception area. You love the essential oil on your skin and you love the dimmed lights. You love the way your body moves, and you love the sound of everyone breathing. You take a sensual and almost erotic pleasure in each of these experiences, and you feel far more than relaxed. You feel aesthetically responsive. You walk out of the yoga studio and your taste buds are more alive. Your responses to food and smells and all kinds of things in the world outside the studio are just a bit more activated than normal.
Now, for Venus, this experience is at the heart of why a person would do yoga. It’s not about the philosophy or the metaphysics, or even the poses or stretching out. It’s not about the need to revisit childhood demons, to “get stuff out,” or to embrace a lifestyle of mindfulness. It’s not about sacred codes found in sanskrit, it’s not about unblocking chakras, and it’s not about becoming a more moral or spiritual person. It’s not about fixing anything and it’s not about evolving your consciousness to the next highest level. For Venus its really simply in the incense, the clothing, the decor, and the feeling of bare feet on wood floors. It can really be that simple. It can be that romantic. It can be sensual and that’s it. The most moral idea Venus often confronts us with is that its more important to have an aesthetic response and to follow our aesthetic response toward what we value than it is to have a spiritual cause or moral mission.
Of course Venus can become a materialist, a greedy, comparative, jealous, pleasure vixen. Of course. But how often do we put a halt to the spiritual quest motif, put a halt to the facing and purging of demons and the evolving of consciousness, so we can find the right bag of coffee or just the right scented candle for the holiday time of year? When do these choices ever become the most soulful level of our focus?
Venus is likely upset with the way we’ve relegated her to the world of consumerism and sales. To the way we’ve conflated her with greed and the constant media barrage of colors and lights and streaming advertisements. It’s no wonder that one of the number one things we hear from yoga students at our own studio has very little to do with yoga philosophy or “mindfulness.” Instead we most frequently hear our students say, “it’s so beautiful in here, and I had such a beautiful experience.” What I’ve seen as a studio owner the past three years is people, mostly women, coming into our studio inundated by the cheapening of Venus…and then finding her again. Leaving with the feeling that life is, once more, an aesthetically charged experience. An arousing, pleasing, responsive physical experience.
Of course yoga’s “technology,” if you want to call it that, is part of this. But let’s not forget that like astrology the postures of yoga are named like constellations in the sky: the lion’s breath, camel and cow, peacock and pigeon, dog and warrior.
Sometimes people complain that American yoga has cheapened the original, eastern religious sentiments and philosophies. The “tradition” has been commercialized, as the real smelly ones like to say. I would tend to disagree with this, and I’m not trying to be mean when I call anyone smelly. Rather I’m invoking Venus. Whose first instinct is to dismiss the quality or concern of the philosophy or metaphysics and go straight to the aesthetic. Who is this self-righteous yogi condemning American yoga? Do they smell good? What does too much sandalwood combined with too much certainty taste like in the mouth of my soul? For many people it’s a lovely combination…just the line of apparel they’re ready to add to their own wardrobe, and people join up. For others its not quite the scent they’re looking for. “I’ll take the beautiful studio and the beautiful physical experience, but I’ll leave behind the zealous sandalwood or patchouli oil discipleship outfit.”
And again, of course it’s true, there is greed and consumerism in the yoga world. Because anywhere there is beauty and richness there is greed and lust. It’s an archetypal reality that is part of what is. This isn’t to dismiss our moral response, or even to disqualify the concerns of yogis who think american yoga is superficial. It’s rather to suggest, very simply, that it’s okay, even better in many instances, that Venus govern our favorite activities, rather than a Saturnine philosophy, dogma, or belief system. My favorite thing about American yoga is that it’s not religious…our Venusian personalities in this country don’t seem to enjoy the smell, taste, and touch, of a mostly patriarchal and ascetic religion that involves stretching and meditating as well as highly cerebral ideas about ultimate metaphysical redemption. We like it more as a fantasy. Venus. We like it more as an outfit or costume. Venus. We like it more because it’s romantic. Venus. We like it more because it’s an enjoyable physical experience. Venus. We like the hardwood floors and the yoga pants. Venus. And it’s okay. It doesn’t need to be anything more. At least not for everyone. As the Greeks once said, “Every soul is an Aphrodite.”
This has been a thought exercise brought to you by Venus. So play with it.
Today’s astrology suggests a warmth, a radiance, a philosophical Venus. My post today…a stylish Venus philosophy. Would you be caught wearing this outfit? That’s more of the question of the day, rather than “do you agree?”
Here’s a few more things to watch for:
* Venus/Jupiter brings exorbitant spending, impulse purchases
* Exaggerated philosophizing (busted!)
* Pride in a style or presence
* The lion struts
* Arrogance, assuredness, freedom
* Travel, future visioning, taking pride in something you love
With the Sun trining Uranus in Aries:
* A philosophical breakthrough
* A moment of unexpected clarity
* A sudden realization about something you believe
* A philosophically inspiring exchange
* An impassioned idea
* Taking a gamble or a risk
* Sticking up for an underdog
The Moon’s aspects to both Jupiter and Saturn today should bring a rather quick alternation between an exciting expansion and a limiting contraction. Watch for mixed news and results today, though with so much fire in the air it should be mostly an enthusiastic day!
Prayer: Help me to five sense my way past any spiritual mumbo jumbo. Help me to honor my soul. My aesthetic response.
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Image by courtesy of Andreas, at creative commons image licensing.