When the Sun moves into Taurus on April 20th, the grounded, patient energy that astrology’s bull is famous for may be in short supply. At that time, Mercury, Mars, Jupiter and Uranus will be in high spirits as they continue their lively foray through bold, fiery Aries. While many like to think of Venus as a gentle, loving energy signifying beauty, art and delicate femininity, it’s a money planet that will enter Aries late on the 20th. With such an excitable cadre of personal and outer planets in the sign of provocation, the bull’s more tempestuous side is likely to show itself in 2011. By the end of this solar journey however, Venus, Mercury and Mars will have moved into earthy, fixed Taurus. Softly aspected there by Neptune and Chiron in healing Pisces, this lineup suggests that the Taurus cycle will ultimately yield the peace, calm and sense of security the bull requires.
At this time of the year much is written about the Cardinal sign of Aries, the sign responsible for kicking off the astrological year. In 2011, that is especially appropriate because at any given time from March 11th through May 11th no fewer than half of the zodiac’s planets, 5, will be under its ferocious, instigative influence. Independent and free-spirited, Aries loves to get us all fired up. Its motto is “just do it” with an “out with the old and in with the new” added for emphasis. Did I mention “Now!”? But with tough squares from Pluto in Capricorn and oppositions from Saturn in Libra waiting at every turn, many an Aries impulse will be interrupted or curtailed. So while the Sun will lead the way into Taurus’s tranquil and abundant pastures on April 20th, it will be well into this Taurus cycle before the other planets stop their squabbling and begin to catch Taurus’s easy-going drift. Quirky Uranus and violent Mars are two of the obvious Arian agitators, but Venus in headstrong Aries exerts a force to be reckoned with, or at least one to be recognized and reconciled.
A living tribute to the saying that it’s always the quiet ones to watch out for, “sweet” Venus represents possessions, resources and income, and she will travel through assertive Aries from April 20th through May 15th. Also associated with art and exalted forms of beauty, one of Venus’s most enduring images is in fact that of Botticelli’s voluptuous goddess serenely standing on a shell. But make no mistake, Venus, the planet, is equally all about luxury, fertility and comfort, a.k.a. money. Even in Botticelli’s loving portrait, the graceful goddess hardly looks famished. In Aries, Venus will ignite our material desires along with our aggressive tendencies toward attaining wealth and its associated power. Cautionary tales of the dark side of the lust for gold abound. They include everything from the deceit, treachery and loss encountered by mythological Jason in his pursuit of the Golden Fleece, to the modern day hubris of Jeffrey Skilling, Jack Abramoff and Bernie Madoff.
Wielding his trident like an ancient super weapon, Neptune, the enduring god of the Greeks, stands at the ageless sea of consciousness. Through time itself he warns us of the excesses of such greed. Corporations, nations and civilizations rise and fall, like the coming and going of the timeless tides over which he prevails. In 2011 he has taken up residence in his home sign of spiritual Pisces, for a 14-year odyssey. Pisces promotes integration, assimilation and a holistic approach to life. In the company of healing asteroid Chiron, one of Neptune’s old fraternity buddies, concepts like “capitalism with a conscience” emerge. In compassionate Pisces, Neptune will work to dissolve the boundaries between “us” and “them” while Chiron devotes its energy to global healing. So where does that leave our cantankerous, lustful bull this year
Taurus’s motives are stability, security and physical pleasure. Those needs can produce the sign’s notorious stubbornness and its penchant for hoarding. The antidote of course lies in its opposite sign, destructive and transformative Scorpio, the Pluto-ruled sign that insists on change. On May 17th the moon will be full in intense, truthful Scorpio. This is an ideal time to reflect on what we value and what we are prepared to release and to birth in order to possess it. The Aries courage, Neptunian insight and bull’s strength and stamina on tap this cycle offer us the power to build it.