Vesta is the Roman goddess of the hearth fire, the keeper of the sacred flame, the goddess of hospitality and the home, as well as principles of ritual and sacred sexuality. As a virgin goddess who belonged to no one but herself, Vesta symbolized self-determination, choosing one’s own path, even if doing so requires rejecting the expectations of others. In the myths of Hestia—the Greek goddess with whom Vesta became syncretized—the gods Apollon and Poseidon both sought her hand in marriage. Hestia refused and asked Zeus to let her remain an eternal virgin, not in the sense of sexual chastity but in the sense of belonging to only herself. Zeus agreed, and she took her place at the royal hearth of Olympus. Hestia chose her own calling and in doing so committed herself to a life of sacred devotion.
As Venus makes a conjunction with Vesta—just days after stationing direct, and in a close trine with revolutionary Uranus in Taurus—you might consider: to what are you devoted? In what ways have you acquiesced to the expectations or desires of others—particularly in your relationships—and how might you commit yourself to a more authentic path? Venus is just emerging from its retrograde cycle, and it seems that one of the first ways we will be integrating the lessons of the last 42 days will be to return to our own desires, our sacred hearth fires, and commit to our own self-determination, even if doing so requires refusing or disappointing other people’s expectations. This does not mean a refusal of relationships or even partnerships with others, but it does invite us to no longer abandon ourselves and our desires, whether or not we are in committed partnerships.
What do you consider to be your sacred calling? What if the altar of your sacred calling burns with the flames of your truest desires? In other words, you will know what you are here to do as you choose to devote yourself to your heart’s desires, trusting that they will light the path to which you are called.
[Image reads: 1 February 2022 Venus conjunct the asteroid Vesta at 11º Capricorn in light lettering on a dark starfield]
Erotic Ecologies + Embodiment: Maps for Making + Revelation
A Threshold Event hosted by home—body
I am very excited to be participating in this public conversation “Erotic Ecologies + Embodiments” at 1:30pm eastern on February 13, 2022. This event will be hosted by Mary Grace Allerdice with guests Alkistis Dimech, Anicka Austin, and myself.
We will be exploring connections between the erotic and creative embodiment, the erotic as a way of seeing and knowing the world(s) of which we are a part, the power of the erotic, and more.
In addition to the live discussion, we'll dedicate 20-25 minutes to answer questions specifically from the live audience.
This event is FREE and open to the public.
You can sign up here.
I hope you join us!
I was recently delighted to sit down for a conversation with Kelly Surtees of Kelly's Astrology. Kelly is one of my astrology teachers and mentors, and I am a teaching assistant in many of Kelly’s online courses. We sat down to discuss what the Sun and the Ascendant mean in a birth chart, and ended up discussing differences between ancient and modern astrology, the nature of personhood, the foundations of a feminist understanding of astrology, and more. The video is available on Kelly’s YouTube channel, and I am so grateful to be able to share a conversation I found so rich and satisfying with you all!
On January 11, Mars in Sagittarius will make a square with Neptune in Pisces, both at 20º. Mars often describes fiery, assertive, driven, and even divisive action, and in Sagittarius, this can be directed toward expanding one’s territory, striking out beyond familiar borders, and conquering that which demands courageous adaptation. However, as Mars squares Neptune, we may find ourselves charging into a tidal wave that sweeps us off our feet, swirling us around and disorienting our plans. It might be challenging to accomplish your intentions around this aspect. At best, you might surrender to the current, adjust your plans to move with the tide, even if it takes you off course. With Jupiter in Pisces ruling both Mars and Neptune, it does feel as if there is some oversight, some promise or potential that even if you find yourself wrestling with the waves or surrendering to their force, this confusion might lead the way to something greater than you could have anticipated.
[Image reads: 11 January 2022 Mars in Sagittarius square Neptune in Pisces in light lettering on a starfield that fades from a reddish tint to a teal tint]
As Venus moves into the heart of the Sun on January 8—a condition known as cazimi—we are halfway through Venus’ retrograde in Capricorn. What this retrograde cycle holds and describes for each of us will be unique to our own charts, but Venus’ general significations of love, desire, pleasure, union, beauty, aesthetic harmony, and justice are under review in the cardinal earth domicile of Saturn. This may be a time when you have been reflecting on what it means to love in ways that are sustainable and enduring, reviewing the deep structures of your commitments, and reassessing the boundaries that allow you to love well. As Venus makes its inferior conjunction with the Sun, it finds favor and resources that may have felt scarce over the last several weeks. This is a moment of renewal as Venus becomes a morning star, even as it continues to move retrograde over the next several weeks, still hidden beneath the beams of the Sun. The lessons of this retrograde may come into some measure of greater clarity or focus today. Pay attention to the dynamics unfolding in your relationships, your desires, and your sense of beauty and justice. Venus will not emerge from under the beams of the Sun until around January 18 and will not station direct until January 29—so this journey is not yet over and all that has been undergoing review beneath the surface has not yet been revealed. But as Venus makes this conjunction on January 8, we are moving through a significant turning point along the way.
[Image reads: 8 January 2022 Venus Cazimi at 18º Capricorn in dark lettering on a bright spot within a dark starfield]
Juno is the Roman goddess of the feminine, marriage and commitment, the counterpart to Jupiter and protector of the community and the state. Astrologer Demetra George describes Juno as “the principle of relatedness and commitment to the other,” “one’s capacity for meaningful relationship and commitment to another person.”
On January 7, Venus will make a conjunction with the asteroid Juno as part of Venus’ longer retrograde journey. Our capacities for commitment within our most significant partnerships are being woven into the larger process of reflection and review described by this Venus retrograde.
Feminist philosopher Judith Butler writes on the subject of love and commitment:
“Commitment would be the agreement to commit oneself anew, time and again, precisely when circumstances change. And this would mean changing the concrete meaning of commitment as circumstances change … if commitment is to be alive, that is, if it is to belong to the present, then the only commitment one can make is to commit oneself again and again. ‘I love you and I choose you again and again.’ I did not just choose you once, but I continued to choose you, and what there is of me in my speech is given to you again and again through this speech act, declaration, vow, and promise, one that binds me to you in the present, whatever present that happens to be.”
As Venus makes this conjunction with Juno, you may find yourself assessing your commitments, committing yourself anew, once again, making your commitment to those you love alive in this present moment, choosing those you love again and again. Doing so may require considerable reflection, asking the questions: why is it that I choose this love, this commitment, now again? How can my love be more than simply a habit or pattern and instead emerge as a clear choice under these current conditions?
Venus will make another conjunction with Juno this year, at 21º Aquarius on March 28. You may notice reverberations between these two connections on January 7 and March 28.
[Image reads: 7 January 2022 Venus Rx conjunct the asteroid Juno at 19º Capricorn in light lettering on a dark starfield]