the astrology of 2023 | Part III - venus retro in leo this summer - rethinking what our heart wants, how we show-up and shine, the things we do for love, old loves and passions can be revived, breakups and breakthroughs, the summer of love

venus retrograde in leo summer of 2023

Venus is the invisible force of attraction. 


She rules beauty, love, women, our values, our resources, our money, our self-esteem. She rules the signs of Libra and Taurus, our second house of values (everything money can buy and everything money can't) and our seventh house of marriage and partnership.


We aren't going to look at all the transits of Venus in 2023. We are going to zero in on the summer of 2023 and Venus's retrograde through 12-28 degrees Leo. This is going to be about getting us past blockages to love and money and creativity! This is more Age of Aquarius 'prep-work' because Leo opposes Aquarius and we don't want to lose our heart/spirit of fun and joy as we move into what certainly looks to be a more logical/detached and science-focused future. 


People with planets/points in Leo within these degrees will get multiple CONJUNCTIONS as Venus meets your natal placements. There is definitely the opportunity to get what you want here, but the retrograde will force delays/patience while certain things are re-worked or we get what we want and then have second thoughts/need to adjust. People with planets/points between 12-28 degrees of Taurus and Scorpio will get multiple frustrating squares that will create the need/push to TAKE ACTION (action that can't be avoided). People with planets/points between 12-28 degrees of Aquarius will get the opposition. This can bring a culmination/ending - or someone/something requiring us to MAKE A DECISION (it might look like someone else's decision is forced on us). Remember this is all designed to BENEFIT us - this is benevolent Venus - to get us past our blockages to love and money and creativity, to our ability to shine/to do our SUN!


If we are lucky enough to have planets/points in our natal chart (or progressed) at 12-28 degrees Aries or Sagittarius, we will get the smooth trine - SOMETHING IS FALLING INTO PLACE. The retrograde delays and re-workings will work in our favor. Good for love, money, attracting what we want.

Venus transits emphasize our connection to what we are in relationship with. We fall in love. We fall out of love. We make money. We spend money. We question our worth as well as the value of the things, people and places we spend our energy and resources on. And she makes us aware of those resources. Venus transits show us what really matters to us. Not what we give lip service to, but what we actually value.


Venus is an inner planet and always connected (within 48 degrees) to our Sun (ego). She can drag us into vanity and self-possession turning love into manipulation and have us collecting chalk marks on our bed posts or swipes on our phone past the ordinary when we think only the very best will do (note this isn't about 'settling'), if we carry her into dysfunction. In her highest form though she balances out the masculine energy we carry - she literally soothes the savage breast. She brings us to peace.

Environmentalist John Seed, channeling his Venus, and working to save the rain forests, says, if he thought he were just one man, just one Seed (how wonderful his name is Seed, huh?), the vast needs and seeming hopelessness of his work would "feel overwhelming". 

Instead he sees himself as "the part of the rain forest that has evolved into a man", (how much do you love that!


He doesn't see himself as laboring alone even when he is laboring alone. He connects to the work that has sent him here (his Venus - the thing he loves). It's that connection that allows his work (and ours!) to attract what it needs for as long as it needs to exist.

We all carry the Venus archetype. The things we create do, too. I believe we are the emissaries of the work we put out into the world. Not the other way around. The work has sent us here. We are required to do something, for, and with, the stirrings of our heart.


We increase our ability to attract when we HONOR Venus.

We honor Venus when we do everything as beautifully as we can. When we move beauty from the periphery to the very center of whatever we are doing. The act of creation is a spiritual act that worships Venus. Our grandmothers instinctively knew this because this is how they spent their days - they made bread, they made sweaters, they made friends with their neighbors, they made a life with what they had.

We honor Venus when we are joyfully partnered with the things, people and places we love. Venus isn't the girl who settles. Venus is the space in our chart where settling will never work for us.

The house and sign she calls home in our natal chart is an indication of what we need and find attractive as well as clues to our own powers of attraction. For example Venus in Gemini needs a mental connection and variety while Venus in Cancer needs an emotional connection and commitment. These are non-negotiables. You get the idea. 


Venus, ruler of our money and resources, in Leo, knows money flows where our passion does, too. What will we pay more for? What do we hang carefully on the padded hanger and what do we drop carelessly on the floor? And, I am not just talking clothes here! If our money is crumpled into balls in the bottom of our handbag, is it really something we value? If our partner is valuable to us, why don't we do the small things we are perfectly capable of doing and know will make them happy? 

Sometimes a Venus transit wakes us up to what we value by bringing us close to losing it.

We honor Venus when we honor ourselves. We honor Venus with simple things like long baths we don't have time for and complicated things like accepting the image of ourselves as "artists". Everyone is an artist! We honor Venus with leisure time and yes, even what we might call "waste". Venus entices us to take another look at what we have blindly called "luxuries" and embrace them as necessities. 


Venus starts 2023 as the ruler of the North Node. Our best path forward. On May 16th, Jupiter is going to enter Taurus and start answering to her. We already have Uranus in Taurus answering to her. This "answering to her" thing, means she has a say in what they are doing AND, so what she does - the aspects she makes, the signs she inhabits, the strengths and weaknesses of Venus in the signs, etc, impacts the planets who are disposited by her (answering to her). 

On June 5th, Venus enters Leo. 


She starts answering to Leo's ruler, the Sun, who is in Gemini at this point. While Venus is in Leo, it can pay for us to pay attention to what the Sun is doing.


Now, before she entered Leo, Venus (love, money, values) had been very comfy, although also somewhat restrained, in Cancer for the last few weeks. She prioritized security over all else and this kept her safe, but also a wee bit bored. Cancer rules the Moon and a Venus/Moon natal opposition is considered the Madonna/Whore complex in a man's chart - so maybe Venus has felt like she was living with her mother-in-law!

With her move into Leo she gets to spread her wings a little (maybe a lot, maybe a whole lot and we do, too!). She leaves her mother-in-law's safe little house with the shuttered windows, central air conditioning, and alarm system where her mother-in-law was paying the rent. What more could Venus want, Cancer asks as Venus heads for the door? "Quite a bit MORE", Venus answers. She moves into a noisy apartment on the other side of town with curtain-less windows, a fan that wakes the neighbors, a deadbolt that doesn't quite latch properly and the rent only gets paid if she pays it. Standing on her own two feet (and what lovely feet they are - this is Venus we are talking about!), Venus is more confident. She has to be to make it on her own (cue Mary Tyler Moore tossing that damn hat). So, what does this mean to us? First, our Leo house, hosting the lovely Venus, becomes more attractive. Leo Suns and rising signs are more naturally attractive (ie easy on the eye and able to attract). We attract what we want and need (Venus) through Leo - so by standing out, standing up, being passionate, taking the world by storm - you get the idea.

We could, of course, go overboard with all of this. Leo (ruled by the Sun) doesn't really like others blocking their light. Competition can get ugly. We could become downright diva-like. Being in love with being in love fits here, too. Wanting to be adored will make being ignored harder to handle.

Venus will get all the way to 28 degrees Leo, almost the very end of the sign, when she will stop, "hey, what did I miss?" and turn around. 


This turnaround, the point where she stations retrograde, will be on July 22nd. She will reverse course, getting all the way back to 12 degrees Leo on September 3rd, when she will turn around again and start moving forward.

JUNE 5th - Venus enters Leo

JUNE 19th - Venus at 12 degrees Leo starts walking degrees she (as we) will walk two more times - notice what is happening in your life from now until she stations retrograde because you will be re-doing something here

JULY 22nd - Venus stations retrograde at 28 degrees Leo

SEPTEMBER 3rd - Venus stations direct at 12 degrees Leo

OCTOBER 7th - Venus crosses 28 degrees Leo, ending the entire retrograde story

When Venus moves into Leo on June 5th - she will oppose Pluto at 0 degrees Aquarius.

Remember in the last post we talked about Mars entering Leo and opposing Pluto on May 20th. So, we will have Mars opposing Pluto on May 20th, followed by Venus just a couple weeks later. 

The Venus/Pluto is a powerful culmination, power struggle. What we want could have a 'life and death' intensity to it. We could be dealing, maybe intensely, with a Scorpian theme - death, sex, intimacy, reproduction, other people's money, inheritance, taxes, insurance, etc. What we want/what we love/what we are creating/how we shine is opposed. If we are acting like a child or acting like a king we could be humbled here. If this is about an important ending, our best bet would be to let go or end it ourselves. Secrets can come out. Obsessions. Compulsions. Pluto digs deep and shows us our deepest fears. Uranus is going to be exact with Mercury here, this is on June 5th, so disruptive/maybe chaotic UNEXPECTED NEWS is part of the story - likely regarding finances, resources, our Taurus house theme. 


For both Mars, on May 20th and Venus, on June 5th, this is happening on the RED HOT degree of 0 Aquarius where Jupiter met Saturn on the Winter Solstice at the end of 2020 and 'started the world up again'. Think - cosmic reset. This retrograde is part of that. 

On July 2nd, Venus squares Uranus - EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED. Uranus squares tend to bring breakdowns, breakthroughs and break-ups. This is the first of three, so part of a repeating process as we deal with this over the next few weeks. 


On July 17th, the Nodes move from Scorpio/Taurus to Libra/Aries. Venus goes from ruling the North Node to ruling the South Node. We will explore this in a 2023 post within the next week or so.

Then Venus stations retrograde on July 22nd and the Sun enters Leo just a few minutes later. This is good news, since Leo is the Sun's sign, he is strong now and Venus is answering to him. We always want our planets strong! By now, the Nodes have changed signs and the day after Venus stations retrograde, Pluto (who is back in Capricorn here) will square the Nodes of Fate and Chiron will station retrograde. This third week of July time-frame is another pivotal period - Pluto square the nodes will show us important 'skipped steps' (particularly within our relationships) and crossroads. 

During her retrograde Venus will make the following important aspects:


JULY 27th - retro Venus conjuncts Mercury (28 degrees) - this is conversations/news/information about whatever Venusian wants/needs we are re-viewing, re-thinking, re-doing. Someone from the past could return or something we 'used to love' be thought/talked about. We are re-thinking Leo themes, too - our creative projects, romance, children, our ego, recreation.

AUGUST 7th - retro Venus conjuncts Black Moon Lilith (23 degrees). This is a repeating aspect - their first meeting is June 28th. We are going to talk about Black Moon Lilith's transit of Leo in its own post, but, basically BML can bring up the ways we are UNCOMFORTABLE WHEN WE ARE TOO SHINY (she is the anti-Moon and always speaking of very old maternal wounds). The ways we are afraid to stand out in case we will be tossed from the garden again. The ways we have been shamed for wanting attention. For wanting LOVE. In Leo, she will be showing us the ways we play small to make other people more comfortable with us, deflect praise, have lost our ability to CREATE, have been shamed for our 'egos', for wanting to play when there was work to do. Black Moon Lilith is always about being shamed for needing things we were perfectly entitled to be needing. Her multiple conjunctions with benevolent Venus will be a time for dealing/healing with these wounds. How are these energies we created to keep us safe (carried from our mothers and their mothers) now standing in the way of our ability to love and be loved, to create and procreate, to attract abundance and stability? How do we need to choose ourselves (maybe over a 'king') within our Leo house theme? There are many ways this will play out and we will talk about it in the 'other planetary bodies in 2023' post. I might think Black Moon Lilith wouldn't have the punch she had last summer in Cancer (her being the anti-Moon), but since she is pulled into the powerful Venus 40 days and 40 night retrograde, it is obvious she is an important player this summer, too.

AUGUST 9th - retro Venus squares Uranus in Taurus (22 degrees). Breakdown, breakthrough, break-up. Relationship/financial tension. Expect the unexpected. We had this same aspect with Venus direct on JULY 2ND - when something likely hit us out of the blue - and we will have a third hit - third time lucky/three strikes we're out? on AUGUST 9TH.

AUGUST 13th - retro Venus conjuncts the Sun (20 degrees). This is the Sun/Venus inferior conjunction. A new beginning in Venus's story with the Sun (what is visible) and the mid-point of her retrograde cycle. The Sun brings illumination/clarity - here is what we need to see about the situation. We now know what this retrograde cycle is about for us and what we need to do. 

She stations direct a couple weeks later and then will finally start covering new ground in early October. She leaves Leo and enters Virgo (October 8th) just in time for Pluto to station direct, Mars to enter Scorpio and the autumn Eclipse season to begin. She will be direct, in Virgo, on October 14th, when we get the first Libra Solar Eclipse, which she rules. We will look at the 2023 Eclipses and Nodal shift in another post. I will put all the 2023 posts at the bottom of the blog's homepage, so we can refer to them easily. I will come back and add to these posts as we go along.

Again keep in mind Venus's retrograde is designed to BENEFIT us - this is benevolent Venus - to get us past our blockages to love and money and creativity, to our ability to shine/to do our SUN!

OK, the next post will be Saturn and Jupiter in 2023.

Then we will look at the outer planets including Pluto's 'toe-dipping' into Aquarius. Then the Nodes switch to Aries/Libra and the Eclipses. And finally the asteroids, etc - my favorites - probably with a focus on Sedna and Black Moon Lilith, but I haven't really looked at the others yet, so we will see what we see!

Let's close out Venus, for now. with a Venus ritual from the amazing "trickster" astrologer Caroline Casey (if you read the wonderful book Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert, you might remember she referenced Caroline when she talked about 'trickster' energy, but she called Caroline a 'radio personality' - maybe she didn't want to use the term 'astrologer' in her book - ack!):

  1. It’s best to perform this ritual on a Friday - which is Venus’ day. You’ll need a round piece of bread, a dinner roll will work. Make a hole in the bread and put a nickel or five pennies inside (the number five is sacred to Venus, Friday is 5th day of the week).
  2. On a small piece of paper, clearly state your desire. Fold this paper and put it into the bread, on top of your nickel. Then pour a little honey on top to sweeten the deal!
  3. Finally, place a small candle in the hole (bigger than a birthday candle, but smaller than a taper, Casey says yellow. I have used green). 
  4. As the candle is burning, do something to honor Venus - take a bath, bake a cake and eat it, etc. Do something that makes you feel beautiful, prosperous and happy. 
  5. When the candle is completely burned down, so that only the melted wax is on the bread, go to a stream or a river, but not salt water like the ocean. Toss this now ritually potent (and fully bio-degradable!) bread into the water, saying a prayer, poem, etc.
  6. Venus energy will respond to our desires. She might fulfill our dreams in amazing ways. Or she might play the trickster, revealing a blind spot that still stands in the way of us attracting what we need.


Note - rituals are powerful and effective and carry the energy of all the previous rituals prepared in the same way. If you decide to do this one - use care and respect.


xo all

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