This week after sunset, we will see the planet Venus move closer and closer to the star Regulus in the constellation Leo the Lion. This is looking west starting 45 minutes after sunset. When considered through the lens of the ancient astrologer this configuration suggests that Venus, goddess of love and beauty, is preparing a place for her love. Regulus is the star at the heart of the Lion and in this position was believed by ancient cultures to be the mighty one, the hero, the king or the ruler of heaven. Because of its position close to the ecliptic plane, which is the path followed by the Moon and planets and apparently the Sun, it appears each year in August that the Sun crosses directly in front of this star. Regulus is one of the four Royal Stars of Persia and as such marks one of the four quarters of the heavens. When the goddess of love and beauty approaches this area Venus, who is the brightest object in our sky after Sun and Moon, it is as though she is illuminating her love with all that is noble and mighty. This is a good omen for feats of love. There is a Ninevite tablet that read: If the star of the Great Lion is gloomy, then the heart of the people will not rejoice. We can imagine that a visit by the goddess of love and beauty does not bring gloom, rather, it was believed to bring generosity of feeling, a literal “big-heartedness,” so any gloom will be dispelled during such a time.

Through the approach of astronomy we would look more specifically at the physicality of the situation and because Venus really isn't very near Regulus spatially, we wouldn't interpret them together. Regulus is classified as a “first magnitude star,” which is a method used to determine brightness. And though Regulus is the brightest star in the constellation Leo, which means it is the alpha star, or the lucida, it is actually is the dimmest of the 1st magnitude stars. Regulus is 77.5 light years away and, as a multiple star system made up of two pairs of stars, its first binary pair is a main sequence star made up of a white dwarf and its companion. This means it is in a final evolutionary state.

Venus, as the second planet from our Sun, has an orbital rhythm of about 225 Earth days, so less than our year. Venus has a very dense atmosphere and is by far the hottest planet in our system. (at 863 degrees Fahrenheit). The surface of Venus, when finally mapped by Project Magellan in 1990 and 1991, revealed that its surface is a dry desert-scape interspersed with slab-like rocks where volcanic-like eruptions occur. 

IPR: And the astrosophy of it all?

MARY: Through the “star wisdom” lens we start with the idea that the highest wisdom is to know nothing. This is somewhat philosophical but it informs an approach that considers the understanding that has come before including the astrology and the astronomy and tries to find a revelation of the human being in it. In astrology, the stars speak to mankind. This period is followed by a “silencing” of the stars when man seeks to define the laws of his physical environment. This so-called silent period of the stars is followed, then, but what man speaks back to the stars. This is the astrosophy, the star wisdom born of self-knowledge. When we then look at Venus and Regulus, we start with the question: What has this to do with me, or with human development, or with the cultural impulse of an age? 

Is there is any demonstrative role between the heart of the Lion and the heart of the human being? And where would I begin if I wanted to find this?  Regulus comes to its highest place in our skies in early April each year, in the Spring when most major religions are practicing their festivals of the renewal of life. It is “occulted” by the Sun each year on mid-August. Is there anything occurring in my life, or in the world in general, that demonstrates a relationship? Or what role does Regulus, play, if any, in the forming of the human heart during the embryonic period? 

With Venus, we can also follow its rhythmic pattern and study it relative to an individual biography. In every eight-year period of time, Venus is making five retrograde loops. I might study those periods and try to uncover the red thread that connects each to the other in a way that proves or disproves a universal harmony that includes human beings and all life on Earth, at home in its celestial environment.

Brophy Sunday 21 July 2013 - 09:21 am | | Astronomy
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