Sun conjunct Venus, trine Jupiter by jill mckenna

A piece of steel wire burning in oxygen inside a glass jar. Mezzotint, 1809. Wellcome Collection.

A piece of steel wire burning in oxygen inside a glass jar. Mezzotint, 1809. Wellcome Collection.

There is a lot of fanfare about this current Sun in Leo conjunct Venus trine Jupiter in Sadge, concentrating in Weds, Thus, Fri of this week. But looking just a few days out, there might be a lot more to this story than these firecracker feelings. Uranus is about to Irish goodbye, stationing retrograde in Taurus on the 11th, the same day Jupiter goes direct and that, dear readers, paints a picture of some potentially significant whiplash from something we can't foresee or anticipate.

What comes together now can just as quickly come apart or change into something different than we intended, especially if it's crafted by the ego's demand for attention. That's because Venus is hidden by the Sun—ego trumping love, trying to prove something but extremely overpowered by what wants adoration. Additionally, Jupiter loves to bestow gifts, but not indiscriminately. For those who have done the groundwork and created a strong foundation of self-understanding through earnest, vulnerable introspection, honorable actions can very well lead to compassionate new abundance.

Combust the Sun, Venus goes out of sight. Sure, it's snug up to the life-giving star, but that means it's spooning pure ego, will, and often heedless drive. By nature, the Sun can cause drought. It can parch nutrients out of anything. It's bleaching, scorching, and terminally justified in its existence, oblivious to the needs of other beings. Like all planets and astral bodies, the Sun cares not, it just is. Hell, it can spark forest fires and destroy many thousand-year-old groundwork. The Sun is not about balance, and expanded by Jupiter on the brink of forwarding motion with Uranus pulling back at the same time? Well, hang on. There's a lot more too this that we can't anticipate.

Alphonse de Neuville, 1872.

Alphonse de Neuville, 1872.

Ruled by the Sun, Leo is both healthy and unhealthy expression of ego, self-resolve, will, and drive. Venus is currently combust the Sun, tucked in under its brilliance, invisible under its rays. Venus is being burnt up. Driven by raw pride, we might pantomime around what we really want, making the shape of it inappropriately; we have the idea, but not quite the resources so we try to overcompensate by powering through. With Venus being blistered, our ego can rule us in this transit, emboldened and expanded by enthusiastic, emotionally expansive (and often expensive), 'too-much-is-the-right-amount' Jupiter. Be careful that you can truly afford what you are risking under the guise of this high-flying energy because once it has passed, we still have to contend with Pluto and Saturn in Capricorn and reality is going to be pushed at us like a bowl of gruel we've still got to finish.

Alternately, If we've done the leg work, making sudden moves now in love or money might be a wisely calculated risk. We could suddenly see a path where we perceived none before or be willing to try something we would normally feel rigid toward. The trick is that our actions be holistic and honorable, versus performed, exaggerated or seeking to garner adoration for our ego.

Without considering Uranus (and Jupiter + Uranus soon changing directions), this is hailed as a terminally great transit. I get it. We like to think Venus is the great Marilyn Monroe crossed with Mother Theresa in the sky (which is actually a major, major problem with our culture). But Venus can lead us to find love in inappropriate and unhealthy places. It's where we can martyr ourselves to the point of self-harm and trauma. Venus in its shadow aspect is why we can justify toxic behaviors, habits, and intimacy. Think of a parent who over parents in the name of love or someone who stays in a toxic relationship because they believe the love is too rare to sacrifice or they love someone more than themselves. With the hook and knot created by Jupiter and shock-&-awe Uranus on the 11th, today's idealism is quite possibly tomorrow's complication. We likely won't know the answer to that for a little while.

See, Venus really gets lost here. Its energy of affectionate feelings and inspiration gets co-opted by the Sun as impassioned ego. This can look like wanting to feel how desirable we are—not in and of itself a bad thing, but the Sun can exaggerate things, like maybe we stay too long at a poker table, trying to impress someone or prove something to ourselves. Or, maybe we swim past wave break to feel our power, but discover we’re so far our, we are in actual peril. We can end up acting in ways that siphon Venus' energy to feed our pride, and we can be willing to short change our own heart and soul to get it. We can get self-indulgent or we can get genuinely motivated with this transit and what we make can turn into gold or later fall away like ashes. In Leo, Venus can justify anything at all especially if what it thinks its doing is related to love. This transit isn’t fool’s gold, but you are gonna want to watch your pockets.

New Moon in Leo / Mercury Stations Direct by jill mckenna

Untitled design (1).png

The new moon happened at 8 degrees of Leo. The sabian symbol for the point is: Glass Blowers Shape Beautiful Vases With Their Controlled Breathing. If you have ever blown glass, it's an amazing practice, one that forces you to be wholly, physically present. Fire, breathing, weight, heat, timing, motion... it's an incredible act of alchemy to turn sand into glass by fire, hardened in water. This moon grants us no less than this process for ourselves.

The new moon on Weds was a potent wrap on a wild eclipse season and a sloggy Mercury retrograde. With so many other planets stationed retro now, this new moon (coinciding with Mercury direct) illuminates the path for our intentions, realized or created through insight and information gained in July. This new moon offers a lot of raw creative power, and dead-ends many outdated and tired paths and situations.

Leo is ruled by the Sun so we have an opportunity to think about what the best outward expression of us is. What's the best, healthy use of our ego, the best expression of our will? When are we embodying integrity, courage, intuition, and peace? Leo is a sign that's comfortable being present with itself, in its own skin, entirely where it is. In its high expression, Leo is generous, peaceful, warm, and creative. We all have Leo in our charts. We all have these gifts.

lion-in-love.jpg

Dysfunctional Leo expression is tyranny, self-delusion, destruction, reactivity, narcissism, and pridefulness. If we find ourselves treating people or situations poorly or devaluing others and the dreams that light us up, we can know we are in fear of being present with, kind towards, and trusting of ourselves. Now though, we are being asked to meet life bravely, assured that we already have the tools to diplomatically address any difficulty that can arise due to encountering the world with pure compassion. The lion chooses to stir, chooses to respond, chooses to engage because it's confident, regal, and knows its own motives. The lion trusts itself, its needs, and its courage, completely. It never flees its own heart or mind; it’s entirely intuitive through total self-knowledge and presence.

This new moon is a bright, clean, blank sheet after scores of cluttered pages filled with manically scribbled emotional marginalia. With influence from Venus and Uranus, this moon urges creativity, passion, heart-centeredness, play, romance, and moving well out of and past our points of comfort. Things are wonderfully, gloriously new now, and if they don't feel quite that way yet, hang on.

The new moon conjunct Venus and square Uranus offers breakdowns or breakthroughs -- is there somewhere we feel stuck or tense or pulled that needs to release and give? We might encounter that now. We might suddenly see someone or something very clearly, through a jolting or shocking realization, allowing us to know what or who is or is not authentic (quite possibly, it's us). The square to Uranus grafts tension between our freedom, will, and new ideas about sensuality and abundance. This tension will be echoed on 8/2 when Venus squares Uranus.