Venus Retrograde 2021 - Part III

Updated: Dec 27, 2021

"Follow Your Bliss!" as Joseph Campbell exclaimed. (Do you know what your joy is??)

Part I of this series of articles on Venus Retrograde can be found here.

Part II can be found here.

Click the links to quickly navigate through the article:

Joy vs Boredom, Emptiness, and Apathy

As well as transforming your relationships, Venus Retrograde is a time for deep reflection on your values and your joy. Let's see how these pieces come together.

Put simply, Venus Retrograde asks you to reassess your joy, which sounds simple and innocuous enough, right? In a culture that seems to have forgotten the significance of knowing our joy—of trusting and following the guidance of our heart-felt bliss—we may feel that we can easily skip this bit, and life will be just fine.

Just keep on working. Head down. Don't stop. There are bills and a mortgage to be paid. And food to be put on the table. And mountains to be climbed. Busy. Busy. Busy.

What's something as trivial and inconsequential as "joy" got to do with anything?

Work harder.

And then . . . every 18 months, like clockwork . . . Venus goes retrograde, and we find ourselves sitting face-to-face with this essential piece of our personal puzzle. Some of us will find this deeply confronting. Because in this moment, despite our best efforts to distract ourselves with all our busy-ness (and mindless "pleasures" - see below), we may realise just how boring and unfulfilling our life feels.

As my Mum always says, beware the emptiness of a busy life. Wise woman, my Mum.

Some of us really don't know what we value; or what bliss or joy even feels like.

It's possible to be so disconnected from this function of Venus that we aren't aware of wanting or valuing anything at all. And what we can experience, instead, is a deep aching sense of emptiness in life, or even apathy.

If you can relate to any of this, what's missing is your Venusian connection to joy and creativity . . . your ability to be still and hear your Soul singing to you about what it cherishes. Can you stop and listen? If you can, then you'll be able to create a life that you love! A life that feels fulfilling on every level, because you'll be engaging the part of yourself that knows what and whom you want to devote your time, energy, attention, and love to.

This "joy" signification of Venus is linked to all that you find valuable.

And it's therefore linked to a life of authenticity, satisfaction, and fulfillment. This is the piece of the puzzle that ensures you're living YOUR life . . . that you're following your bliss, as Joseph Campbell urged us to do. Otherwise, you may find yourself simply living up to familial and societal expectations. You may be living a life that is extremely practical and respectable, yet isn't coming from your heart's deeper wisdom. And it therefore isn't anchored in the life that you dreamed for yourself.

As Carl Jung (36/9) once said: “Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”

If you're resonating with any of this, then Venus Retrograde will invite you to engage (and even wrangle) with this over the coming weeks.

So, let me ask you:

Of all the things, and experiences, and possibilities in the world:

  • What is your joy?

  • What makes your heart sing?

  • What do you value above all else?

  • What and whom are worthy of your love and attention?

  • What and whom do you cherish?

  • What is extraordinarily beautiful to you?

  • What do you want to devote yourself to?

Despite what some of us Aquarians may think, no one can love everything equally.

Through your answers to these questions, you will come into a deeper relationship with your authentic self. You will better understand where your self-worth derives from. You will better understand how to materially support yourself in this life, because (through Venus' rulership of Taurus) this is directly connected to your joy and values. And you will come closer to finding your true Path in this world. YOUR Path.

Let's look at this a bit more closely, particularly considering that Venus is currently retrograding in fellow-Earth-sign Capricorn.

Venus in Capricorn

Deriving a Sense of Fulfilment from Your Great Work

In Capricorn, Venus asks you to consider the connection between all that you value (Venus), and your Great Work (Capricorn). Your Right Work. (Note the capital letters.) What do you want to devote yourself to? Are you currently pursuing a Path that includes your heart and joy, and is anchored in all that you value and cherish? A Path that offers you a deep sense of satisfaction and fulfilment?

If so, awesome! "Your mountain is calling! Get on your way!" as Dr Seuss would say.

Or are you simply climbing any old mountain?

Some of us can say, "Mountain! Climb!!" without truly reflecting on whether or not it's our mountain. And when we finally reach the summit, after years (or even decades) of discipline and hard yakka, we may realise that we're on the wrong mountain altogether. Ooops.

"Oh, look! There's my mountain, waaaay over there in the distance." Ugh.

At that point, we can either start all over again, or continue to live a life other than our own. Neither of these choices are optimal, right??

So … Hopefully, before you take another step, you'll pause during this Venus Retrograde to consider IF you're currently summitting your own mountain. Literally, YOUR mountain. Not the mountain that someone else believes is a wise or sensible choice for you. Not the mountain that is the most convenient or respectable. Not the mountain that your parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents all climbed before you, so you feel obligated to climb it, as well. Not the mountain you said you were going to climb, and now feel locked into. But actually YOUR mountain.

YOUR Great Work and Purpose. (Capricorn)

YOUR Bliss! (Venus)

YOUR Values! (Venus)

As I mentioned in an article back in 2019, the decisions we're making now (while Saturn is in His back-to-back rulerships of Capricorn and Aquarius) will form the foundation of our life for the next 30 years until Saturn then returns to Capricorn, again. (No pressure!)

By retrograding in Capricorn, Venus is inviting you to revisit and reassess any decisions you've made about your life and your Path over the past couple of years while Jupiter, Saturn, and Pluto have all been travelling through this sign of the zodiac. Everything's up for consideration . . . Courses you're studying. Businesses you're building. Professions you're pursuing. And roles you're undertaking.

Are these in alignment with your joy, your creativity, and your values? Are they truly what you want to devote yourself to for decades to come?

Key Dates:

While we're talking about 2019, here are some Key Dates you could look at, if you're curious: 17 July, 2019 and 17 July, 2000. On these dates, we experienced a Lunar Eclipse at 24° Capricorn (at the South Node), just a couple of degrees from where Venus and Pluto are dancing together, right now. Venus' current retrograde will be activating the energies and intentions set in motion at these previous eclipses.

And, as already mentioned in Part I of this series, 22 December, 2013 would be good to look back on, as well. This is when Venus turned retrograde at very similar degrees, just eight years ago.

These dates are worth looking back on, if you have access to old journals, social media posts, photos, emails etc.

True Joys, Simple Pleasures, and Challenging Addictions

Let's take this article in a slightly different direction, now . . . Let's look at our daily experience of this energy, and how it can turn quite challenging, if left unaddressed.

I remember working with a client during Venus Retrograde some years ago. She'd specifically requested a reading because, as she said, her "life felt empty". This is definitely a Venus matter.

When I asked her what her joy was in life, she assured me that she engaged in many fun activities . . . from attending a writing group; to enjoying her many handcrafts; to regularly attending the cinema to watch films; to attending interesting workshops; and reading many novels. She then declared that she must simply be a "grizzle guts" to be feeling empty despite participating in all of these wonderful hobbies and past times.

But, as I said to her, if her life feels empty despite doing all of these fun things, then these are not her joys. Instead, they are merely her pleasures, which are a poor man's substitute for the real thing.

(This is an important distinction to make. And I invite you to re-read the above paragraph a couple of times, to truly get it.)

Upon reflection, my client realised that her true joy was travel. She'd traveled the world many times over in her lifetime, and missed it more deeply than she cared to admit to herself. When I asked why she no longer globetrotted, she explained that she was now in the role of Carer for two close family members. She felt it would be selfish and irresponsible to leave them, just to go adventuring. And so, she'd been trying to sate her longing for her true joy through these various past times. To no avail.

Because, as Eric Hoffer once said, "You can never get enough of what you don't really want."

And the unsated are insatiable.

Our pleasures leave us feeling empty, because they cannot satisfy us.

Only our joys can do that.

Now, this particular client's pleasures included novels and handcrafts etc. Harmless enough. And, as mentioned at the beginning of this article, some of us will hide from this sense of emptiness through workaholism and busy-ness.