Ahhh. Venus. Goddess of love, beauty, and harmony. Her domain is all things relationships, style, aesthetics, art, music, money, business, pleasure, and entertainment.
Wow! What a fun planet. So Venus loves to have a good time and have everything be copasetic with everyone.
Venus retrograde can't be that bad then.. can it? Despite what pop astrology would have you think, retrogrades are nothing to be afraid of.
WTH is a Retrograde Anyway?
When planets retrograde, they slow down so much that they appear (from our vantage point) to stop in the sky and change directions, moving backward through the zodiac. This can manifest literally in the world as reversals in decisions, delays on trips or purchases, or having to return to something that appeared to be all squared away.
Depending on what zodiac sign this occurs in, retrograde stories will be more emphasized for some of us and less for others. The energy of all retrogrades is supportive of times for rest, reflection, and introspection. As the planets slow down in the sky, so should we.
Venus's Cycle of Rebirth
As Venus goes through its journey around the sun, it shifts back and forth between what's known as heliacal phases. Heliacal means 'relating to or near the Sun', so Venus's relationship to the Sun is changing. As it begins to slow down, it is visible in the western part of the sky after the Sun has set in the evening, its 'evening star' phase. As Venus continues its journey, it comes under the rays of the sun and is no longer visible in the sky for a period of time. Planets in this condition are known as 'combust'. Symbolically, they are being burned up by the power of the Sun's beams and unable to carry out their planetary duties, until they reach the heart of the sun.
When in the heart of the Sun, planets are known as 'Cazimi' and this point of the cycle is a Venus-Sun conjunction. A 'conjunction' refers to two planets that are at the same degree as a zodiac sign in the sky. They're as close as they can possibly get. At this point in the cycle, Venus is now in between the Earth and the Sun and at its closest distance to us. This is why astrologers consider retrograde planets to be so impactful to the collective. This powerful, celestial energy is damn close to us earth dwellers.
Shortly before Venus begins to move forward again through the zodiac, it becomes a morning star as it is visible in the sky before the sun rises.
During the retrograde, Venus is moving at its slowest speed. She shifts from an evening star to a morning star, begins to move forward, and eventually reaches her peak speed and forms another conjunction with the Sun (but this conjunction occurs while Venus is in direct motion, not retrograde motion.)
Every 18 months this cycle happens like clockwork, and Venus is metaphorically reborn in the sky during a period that lasts for 40 days. (Any interesting stories or mythologies involving 40 days and 40 nights that come to mind?)