The Art of Appreciation

Ancient astrologers observed the blazing morning star Venus vanish once every 18 months and re-emerge as the brilliant evening star. Venus has phases just like the Moon; only we cannot see them as easily as we can the waxing and waning Moon. Have you noticed a brilliant star due west in the sky after sunset? That would be Venus. She grows bigger and brighter as she moves closer to earth once every eighteen months.

My late astrology teacher Anne Massey once told me that back in late 1989 when Venus was a brilliant evening star, she was researching astrological cycles, and noticed themes in her life that repeated at eight-year intervals. However, she couldn’t find a corresponding astrological cycle. Venus was in Capricorn for months back then. Her initial fascination led to investigation of five distinct Venus cycles in only five of the zodiacal signs over the course of a century. The pattern the cycles form in the astrological wheel is a pentagram, the very symbol of talent and creativity—the symbol special to Wicca. The incredible precision of the Venus cycle is an art form in itself. The way her cycles influence our lives is rather magical.

Each Venus cycle begins when Venus and the Sun meet, while Venus is retrograde. The technical term, inferior conjunction, fails to capture its essence. Anne called this cyclical conjunction the New Venus. Venus repeats her performance every eight years in each of the five signs thirteen times—inching backward 2.5 degrees each time. She gives us a hundred years to learn to appreciate whatever that sign represents in our lives. Think of Sleeping Beauty and her hundred-year sleep. Yes, even fairytales tell her story. Eventually, we awaken and discover a renewed appreciation of who we are and what we appreciate. Venus does not force the issue; rather she gently whispers, “do you love it?”

Are you a blazing morning star or a brilliant evening star? Marilyn Monroe had a morning star Venus in Aries in her chart. She sang ‘Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend’. The morning star phase has affinity with the Taurus aspect of Venus. Marilyn was a lasting sex symbol with Venus in a sign that belongs to Mars the warrior; do you suppose she knew how to charm men? Angelina Jolie was born with Venus as an evening star in Cancer. Her mission seems to be looking after the children of the world. The evening star phase of Venus is more like Libra.

While Venus in Capricorn spent four months in Angelina’s seventh house of relationships in 2005-06, her relationship with Brad Pitt became daily news. Her personal attention was on trying to determine what kind of relationship this was meant to be. Do I love him, appreciate him and does he feel the same? Brad Pitt has four personal planets in Capricorn in his second house. If you were talking to him about his life at the end of 2005, you might have asked him how important it was to him to share priorities with his partner. On a financial note, he bought out his former wife in a business venture. He is likely to make big bucks in 2008 with the projects he launched through that company when Venus was in Capricorn.

Venus is about what we value. When she appears to move backward in the sky from our perspective, we re-evaluate what is important to us. Venus is a personal planet and the issues she brings to the forefront with her cycles are equally personal.

Once you learn to identify the areas of life where Venus is most active for you, you’ll fall in love with Venus all over again. If you walk down memory lane with the Venus cycles in your chart. What stories do the Venus cycles reveal for you?

You can look at your life and the life of your clients through the lens of Venus—that sometimes rose colored glass of love. Yet Venus is more than love and beauty, more than compliments and niceties. She evokes all kinds of feelings in us. Venus makes us look at what we like or dislike and why. She teaches us the art of appreciation!


About the Venus Cycle:

  • Venus waxes to Full in nine months

  • Venus wanes to New in nine months

  • The cycle is 584 days

  • The transition between the phases is 40 days (RX)

  • Currently the five signs are Aries, Gemini, Leo, Scorpio and Capricorn

  • Each individual cycle lasts eight years

  • The symbol for the cycle is the pentagram


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