The Arizona Astrologer Reprint

Reprinted from the November 1987 Arizona Astrologer

Philip Sedgwick
Venus and Mars

Scribe: Patrick Hesselmann

Philip’s lecture on Venus and Mars was a delightful tour of information and wit on the two planets, after the Sun and Moon, most likely to be discussed between interested parties. From these basics, we can put together a fair picture of our own desires and drives and those in our relationships.

Venus as ruler of Libra represents the archetype of feminine beauty. Mythologically, we have the battle between Uranus and his sons, in which he is castrated, with his genitals falling into the ocean and foaming to such an extent that Venus is born of the reaction. She emerges “on the half shell,” to quote Philip, sailing to the Island of Cythera, where her beauty is recognized by all but her skill at getting things done is lamentably short. She is finally given the job of looking beautiful, and so emerges the archetype of feminine beauty and practical dysfunctionality, which for centuries was the feminine ideal and caricature.

Venus as ruler of Taurus is the archetype of understanding the material plane, both in the traditionally accepted sense of being material, but also in the sense of recognizing that a hug is worth more than any mink jacket. The understanding of both the material and physical and emotional values can result in a philosophy that says, “People are what count, and with my resources, I can get anyone I want.” The flip side of that is the Libra tendency to say, “If I can get someone to like me, I will be worth something.” The Libran needs to learn to be whole alone (all-one) rather than trying to make themselves whole through someone else.

Note the quincunx between the two signs, indicating a need for adjustment between the two concepts, both ruled by Venus.

Dealing briefly with three specific sign placements of Venus, those most commonly denigrated, we have the following.

Venus in Virgo: This is a placement requiring a genuine interaction with the partner. If there is no real interaction, the Venus in Virgo is likely to say “no, thank you” to the whole relationship. Her discrimination is matched by a need to be true to herself and to find someone compatible. She is a master of technique once she can relax sufficiently to let go.

Venus in Scorpio: This is incredibly magnetic, but like the magnet, can attract or repel. If you are on the same wavelength the effect can be exciting, but if she is in need of space, which occurs relatively infrequently, there is a need to repel others and re-center herself.

Venus in Capricorn needs to feel secure, to feel she can trust you in order to open up. Until then, she tends to be quite cool and aloof. But then she is very responsive, appreciates quality, and likes to be recognize for what she is . . . which can be very seductive. Venus in Capricorn needs to feel the partner is equal, including in financial support, etc. Workplace involvements need to be very discreetly handled.

Turning now to Mars, we see his rulership of Aries and Scorpio, again in quincunx. This is again an indication of a need for bidirectional adjustment.

The Arian Mars wants to confirm his existence by pushing on something and finding the reaction. The “something” pushed on is quite likely to be you . . . and Aries will validate his existence and success by the fact that you react to being pushed on. If you want to destroy Aries, simply ignore him. This may, of course, be quite a trick on your part, as Aries gets out the battering ram to make sure you know he’s around! There’s a primeval ego development need (where EGO is “Expressing God Only”). When Aries allows himself to be everything, he has then activated Mars fully.

Now proceeding to the combination of Mars and Venus, we look first at the midpoint meaning and then at the aspects between the two planets.

The Mars/Venus midpoint is the balance of masculine and feminine in your nature. It is a point of creativity in your own life, Venus and Mars being the essentials for creating life.

Venus conjunct Mars: This indicates a diplomatic approach to fulfilling your own needs, or an adamant way of pursuing your desires. If the conjunction is balsamic (closing from the 12th house side), you may pursue things you do not even know you want.

Venus semisextile Mars: Here you may get somewhat mental (effect of the semisextile) about your approach to your desires. It could go so far that you tend to forget the objective in analyzing how to achieve it.

Venus semisquare Mars: These people tend to tell you what is not in their lives, setting up a pattern of complaining and feeling sorry for themselves. Tell them to go out and fill the void.

Venus sextile Mars: The tendency is again to the mental but coupled with a degree of laziness, which tends to blunt their effectiveness in getting what they want. Peace and harmony are important.

Venus square Mars: This is a dynamic aspect, giving restlessness and a constant motivation to achieve fulfillment. Often accompanied by sexual overtones, the dynamic here is of tension and excitement. There is a need for a little friction in interactions, some bantering and verbal sparring (which may be played out on the physical level as well…).

Venus trine Mars: The ideal of harmony and peace prevails, but can get somewhat boring, since the drives to fulfill the needs are so well matched with the needs themselves. This allows the imagination to play an active role but gets in the way of action. Since there is no real tension to resolve, action is almost unnecessary.

Venus sesquiquadrate Mars: This is similar to the semisquare, but there is a lack of recognition of what is causing the frustration, since the peripheral vision is lost beyond the square aspect. These people need continually to assess what they want and do a net worth inventory of what they have to offer the world.

Venus quincunx Mars: Here, there is a need to set your mind on one particular thing and then keep it in focus until the goal is reached and completed. Without special attention, the tendency is to lose interest during the late stages of pursuing something. There are built-in disapproval tapes from early mocking or put-downs of the child’s attempts to achieve goals.

Venus opposed Mars: This aspect lends dynamism of an external variety. These individuals will tend to see their desires and ways to satisfy them as being outside the self rather than as part of their internal life. They need to recognize their ability to attract what they desire from the outside world.

Synastry, or comparison of two charts. If there are Venus-Venus contacts, compare the likes; if there are Venus-Mars contacts, look for a situation of “You have what I want”; if Mars-Mars contacts, expect actions to be the topic of comparison.

Conjunction: There is an alignment; no need to negotiate. If Venus-Mars, one is assertive, the other receptive; if Venus-Venus, they have the same needs; if Mars-Mars, they have the same way of going after things.

Sextile: An aspect of friendship, of having good times, but not memorable. Somewhat mental, idea-oriented; e.g., they might talk about their preferences for dinner but not really follow up.

Square: Dynamic, not mental, very action-oriented, as if constantly driven (square to Mars) or constantly flirting and teasing (square to Venus).

Quincunx: Here there is a missing factor; everything seems to get derailed as it progresses in a futile attempt to get the partner to be different from the way he or she is.

Opposition: This provides a mutual attraction in a narcissistic way – each is verifying his or her own self-love by seeing the characteristics reflected in the partner. (Presumably, then, this could be less than ideal if we don’t like ourselves.)

Venus retrograde: The feelings that others hold the key to what you need or want is emphasized. There is a need to define the feelings more directly.

Mars retrograde: Focus and direction need refinement.