Venus in Scorpio and 'Forbidden Feelings'


Venus in Scorpio can't leave an 'easy' relationship well enough alone. She courts complication and controversy. Anything less is too superficial; unrewarding.

But does she scratch away at surfaces simply to get us access to the fuller range of impolite emotion underneath, where unbridled passion dwells? Or does she hunt for issues or problems that aren't always worth drawing attention, seduced by the drive to ensnare herself in full-contact interpersonal drama, despite whatever collateral energy-suck?

We're slated to find out more about what exactly she has in store, now that Venus has entered Scorpio (last Wed Sep 8), where she'll stay through early January 2011… with the exception of three weeks in November, when she's back in Libra for a brief spell, an indicator of, yes, an upcoming Venus retrograde (Oct 8-Nov 18).

For the remainder of this year, then, we'll experience the pull of forbidden feelings—a question we're afraid to ask, lest we get the answer we dread (or perhaps the one we yearn for); a truth so painful to share with a loved one, but too important to continue ignoring; a desire for deeper intimacy (and, along with it, a greater risk of getting hurt); an attraction that can't be denied any longer, though it threatens to disrupt so much else—so that we may proceed in our relationships having 'come clean', previously suppressed material no longer holding subconscious power over us.

Venus retrogrades are renowned for resurrecting unfinished business and/or grabbing our imagination with the allure of fresh sparkly stimulus in the areas of life governed by Venus… most popularly, love, money and beauty. Old flames come back for another round or a final chapter. New interests flirt for our attention, reminding us of a certain angle of interrelating we'd forgotten about or thought we'd put to bed earlier in our youth. Deals fall through or finally come together, this reversal of terms a flashing signal to us to reassess whether any of it's a solid value. And where we have let attractiveness or aesthetic appeal lapse to our detriment, we grab for a rejuvenating revision or refinement.

On the other side of a Venus retrograde, we've hopefully regained our appreciation for that which we truly hold affection for—and caught a clearer clue about the soul-sucking flatness of life when we're merely 'going through the motions', not really caring because it 'doesn't really matter'. Doesn't it?

In Scorpio, a sign of her detriment, Venus is somewhat out of her comfort zone. Typically, Venus wants to simplify our joining-together with the people, objects and experiences we most crave. But Scorpio's penetrating influence always leaves Venus suspicious of the simplification: What isn't being considered? What isn't being shared? What else does this person want from me? Which motivations are lurking in the shadows, unidentified?

Suspicion, alas, often breeds more of the same. We emit our sneaking mistrust as we sniff around their words and deeds. They, sniffing out our sniffing, detecting our disquiet, wonder what we're so mistrustful of, whether this suspicion we're harboring is also a key to understanding our underlying psychology… that we're suspicious of what they may be hiding because we ourselves are hiding something. Pretty 'meta', huh? Actually, it's not any different from our becoming sad when somebody we love is sad, or the way animals smell fear and feed off it. Even smiles and laughter are contagious, of course. This is the 'snowball effect' of the water element: Emotions beget further emotional response.

Obviously, you can see how this could create much undue complication in relationship.

That's not to say this is necessarily a 'bad' situation, naturally. (Haven't you read enough astrobarry to know I rarely lead you down the path of black-and-white interpretation?) We all know plenty of folks who appear to thrive (or at least claim to) within such interpersonal dynamics. Perhaps you are one of them yourself. There's a lot to be said for proactively engaging with the fullest range of emotional reality, no stone left unturned, no premise unquestioned. Many of us can't help but press the red button as long as it's taunting us with its hot color and provocative 'Do Not Touch!' sign—even if our impish act triggers hours of loud piercing alarm, upsets, interrogations, doubts, fights, post-fight make-up sessions, and a lot more fallout activity than we'd anticipated. Hell, we did anticipate it on some level. It's what we wanted, consciously or not. At least life isn't boring.

Still, there is a noteworthy distinction between (1) being uncompromisingly 'real', flirting with danger in the process, and (2) excessively stirring the pot because it keeps all parties embroiled in an all-consuming back-and-forth. While we must dig all the way down to the root-source of our discontent in order to progress beyond it, on the other hand, we'll never fully heal if we incessantly pick at our scabs, deriving some masochistic pleasure from the regular reappearance of blood. Sometimes, we need to cut our losses, let go and move on. We've got to acknowledge where we're investing endless amounts of energy into situations that agitate or unsettle us, essentially draining our focus away from other more productive purposes.

At its unintegrated worst, Venus in Scorpio aims its entangling complications outward, leading us to project our disavowed fears or desires onto other people, so we may (unfairly, I might add) point our fingers at them, blaming, blasting, beating 'em into submission or bed. This Venus can fool herself into overlooking where she's hurting the one she loves. It is her method for maintaining control over her companion. Hit 'em where it hurts, then help 'em back up on their feet again. Oh, the perverse lengths we'll go to avoid directly confronting our demons…

Most of us, thankfully, will not experience Venus's extended stay in Scorpio through abusive treatment of each other. Instead, we're simply likelier than usual to want to peel back the curtains and look into the dark backstage crevices… to confront our submerged drives head-on, especially those that underscore our quest to satisfy our interpersonal desires, and to unceremoniously do away with our politest illusions. With Venus already within shadow of her retrograde, which begins less than a month from now, this notion of revisiting unfinished relationship business—to put it to bed and at last buy yourself some peace; to see if there's still something left; to finally do what you refrained from doing all those other times—is ripe for the picking.

Once Mars enters Scorpio, to join Venus in a sign he traditionally rules with unflinching emotional courage, for a six-week stay that begins on Tuesday (Sep 14), any ability to maintain surface-level artifices will only be further imperiled.