Venus Retrograde: A Reclamation of True Self & Creative Energy

Posted on July 21, 2023 by Henry Seltzer of ASTROGRAPH.COM

Summer is about to take a fascinating turn as Venus, the planet of love and beauty takes a retrograde journey through the luminous, fiery realms of Leo! From the 22nd, around 6:30 PM PT, until September 3rd, all Venusian themes like love, relationships, values, and aesthetics will be moving at a slower pace and up for inner reflection, contemplation, and re-evaluation. For this particular retrograde, Venus stations at 28º Leo. Venus retrograde in the sign of Leo brings our awareness to a renegotiation of how we value and express our creative life-force energy, how willing we are to shine our inner light, and how much we dare to be our truest authentic selves.

Venus Retrograde begins with Venus as the Evening Star and is a symbolic journey of the goddess into to the underworld as Venus then dips below the horizon to walk the realms of shadow and death, only to rise again, reborn, transformed, and more fully formed in her potency to begin a new 584 day cycle. When Venus rises as the Morning Star in the sign of Leo, this indicates for many astrologers that the Leo sign will color this entire 584 day cycle, heralding the presence of a bold and unabashed style of relating.  This particular retrograde also looks to have an emphasis on the state of relationships in the greater context of society and the collective, as well as a heightened focus on reclamation of creativity, authenticity, as well as feminine expression, and power. Venus represents the realms of earthly pleasure and delight, including love, romance, relationships, and sensuality, as well as aesthetics, money, personal values, and self-worth. During this retrograde time all Venusian themes are heightened, and we are invited into a deeper, inward reflection about the state of our relationships with others as well as with ourselves.

Interestingly, the retrograde station position of 28º Leo is making some very potent aspectual connections with other planets, and will therefore set the tone for the whole retrograde period. At the time of the station, Venus is making a very close conjunction with Black Moon Lilith, and is the focal point of a Yod (a sextile with two inconjuncts) from Pluto and Neptune. The sextile connection between Neptune and Pluto is reflective of the state of the collective. As these outer planets move slowly and are generational, they cast a very wide net. Right now they are in the last degrees of their respective signs, with Pluto at 29 + Capricorn and Neptune at 27 + Pisces. Pluto in Capricorn has been about breakdowns and re-forming of societal systems, particularly financial and patriarchal structures, while Neptune in Pisces symbolizes an influence of greater awareness of unity consciousness, spiritual and metaphysical realms. With Neptune there is also the down side of increased collective susceptibility to misinformation, or uncertainty around what is real and what is not. With Venus in the focal point of the Yod, this suggests to me that this retrograde will foster an intensely heightened awareness of how societal attitudes and conditioning inform – for better or worse – our sense of self-worth as wells our interpersonal relationships.

We exist in an ever-evolving soup of energy, attitudes, and beliefs that may or may not be true to who we really are. This retrograde time can help us identify and shed mismatched cultural values, and come into greater contact with and embodiment of our own Truth. In this vein, Black Moon Lilith is a big deal for this Venus retrograde; not only is she conjunct Venus at her retrograde station, she is also prominent in the subsequent August 16th New Moon, where she is conjunct the Sun and Moon! The Black Moon Lilith archetype is often seen in terms of a cast-out feminine sexuality and power; we can also frame this archetype more as a general principle of shadow-work and reclaiming of our own inner potency and power. In other words, Lilith is symbolic of the parts of self that we shut away because of early conditioning in our family and/or culture, and the process of reclaiming those aspects of Self as we come into greater acceptance and love of all aspects of our own true nature. In this frame, I see this Venus Retrograde as a potent invitation to reclaim the parts of our psyche that we’ve deemed as unworthy.

By offering ourselves love in the places where we feel ashamed or less than, we can blossom into a more full expression of ourselves as creative beings. The start of the new Venus cycle will commence on August 19th when Venus rises again as the morning star. From there she will continue to track backward through the zodiac until September 3rd when her direct station occurs at 12 Leo. You may want to check your birth chart for in which house or houses Leo resides, in order to see what area of your life will be most influenced. Those with placements in Leo, especially Sun, Moon, or the angles (cusps of 1st, 4th, 7th, and 10th houses) will be most affected. Any Fixed sign placements will be influenced, as well. (You can check your chart in the TimePassages App to see where Leo is for you!)

At the time of her direct station on September 3rd, Venus will make a conjunction with the asteroid Juno, associated with partnership, which suggests to me it will be a potent time of coming to new clarity around the state of our current commitments, as well as insight on making commitments moving forward. I suggest allowing a few weeks to pass as Venus regains her forward momentum before making any big moves or major choices within existing relationships, since things will begin to settle out and return to their more normal state as Venus gets moving forward again. In any case, I encourage you to use the potent period of time of the Venus retrograde to re-examine all aspects of your partnership connection, and for your relationship dynamics in general. May we all find the healing pathways, clarity of heart, and loving kindness to come into thriving relationship with ourselves and with each other.