Omicron, The Winged Sandals of Perseus, and Project Omega.

Public

Omicron, the new variant of covid-19 has jumped the queue; following the Greek letters of the alphabet, the new variant should have been called Nu however to -ahem- avoid global confusion the WHO (World Health Organisation) have decided to skip both “Nu” and” Xi” and go straight to Omicron, the fifteenth letter of the Greek alphabet.

Between Delta and Omicron there were other variants such as Zeta, Eta, and Theta… though apparently not considered remarkable enough to elicit much interest. Omicron on the other hand, according to a top UK health official, is serious, and vaccines will “almost certainly” be less effective.

Here we are at the 15th letter of the Greek alphabet with nine more to go. Omicron has a numerical value of 70 and I couldn’t help wondering if this reflects the current plan to vaccinate 70% of the population… and my next thought was a chilling one as I considered Project Omega- the last letter of the Greek alphabet.

In Astronomy, Omicron is the designated fifteenth star in a constellation; stars groups include Omicron Andromedae, Omicron Ceti, and Omicron Persei.

In the spirit of myth weaving, and stories of the stars…and having recently been diving deeply into the Medusa myth- my interests is Omicron Persei.

In Greek mythology, Perseus is the young hero who slays the head of Medusa aided in his quest by magical tools given to him by the gods. Among these sacred objects is a pair of winged sandals (talaria) crafted by Hephaestus of imperishable gold and said to fly their rightful owner- Hermes- as swift as any bird. Adorned with the blessings of the gods and wresting the secret of the whereabouts of Medusa from the one eyed Graeae (the Gray sisters), Perseus set out to do what until then no man had been able to do, kill the petrifying serpent headed Gorgon by decapitation. His mission was successful.

The constellation Perseus is surrounded by several other constellations including Andromeda to the west, Cassiopeia to the north, and Aries and Taurus to the south. The brightest star in the constellation is Algol (β Persei), known as the demon star and is said to depict the severed head of Medusa.

Omicron Perseus is also known as Atik which means “shoulder,” and refers to shoulder of the Pleiades; it is located in the winged sandalled left foot of our hero slayer. Hermes (Mercury), Messenger of the Gods, who knows all routes to any destination and who is able to cross all boundaries is at work here.

Interestingly, today on the release of PM Boris Johnson’s briefing outlining further restrictions on account of Omicron, the Sun is conjunct Mercury at 6 degrees of Sagittarius.

A clever trickster sent to do the bidding of the gods Hermes also symbolizes the mercurial adaptability of the mind and its channels of communication. Mercury is symbolic of our mental energy transmitted through speaking, writing, and thought… it influences how we perceive the world.

Mercury is also associated with serpent energy which is symbolised by his staff, the caduceus, with two snakes crowned by wings or a winged helmet. The motif of the two snakes is also present in the myth of Medusa… the blood from her severed head is gifted to Asclepius, god of medicine by Athena; the right vial has the ability to heal and to bring back the dead while the left vial has the power to kill… just like the venom of a snake.

In alchemy the two serpents represent masculine and feminine energies, or solar and lunar energies which must be balanced for transmutation to occur- the alchemical marriage.

In the solar hero, snake or dragon slaying myths-myths that have created energetic blueprints in the human psyche-the question we must ask is, to what extent are the soli- lunar energies balanced.

Today I could not help noticing as Boris Johnson delivered his briefing from Westminster, that the podium he stood upon had an image of the Lion and the Unicorn on the front. The Lion represents the solar condition while the Unicorn represents the lunar; in that particular image the Unicorn, as is often the case, is chained.

Is it time for a new myth, has the solar hero story gone too far, blown itself up?

The symbolism of the pandemic is a rich multi layered tapestry that sets fire to the imagination… maybe one reason that Omicron was able to jump the queue is down to help from Mercury and his winged sandals. Just a thought.

Reclaiming Medusa’s Head… so she can speak.

Medusa

When the moon reached her fullness at 27° Taurus 14’, on 19th November, she made a conjunction to the fixed star Algol Beta Persei at 26° Taurus 10’ (Algol has a 2° orb). Located in the Medusa’s head of the Perseus constellation, Algol is thought to be one of the most unfortunate stars in the heavens and is widely associated with violence. William Lily, the 17th century Astrologer considered any planet within a 5° orb of Algol to be afflicted.

The Arabic name for Algol is Al Ghoul which means demon or evil spirit and is associated with decapitation which is connected to the myth of Medusa whose head is slain and severed by Perseus.

Algol also has the same root as alcohol… losing one’s head is a consequence of consuming too much alcohol.

Today asteroid Medusa is at 10° Scorpio 10’ in an opposition with Uranus at 12° 0’ Taurus. Dark Moon Lilith- the dark side of the Moon- is at 1 Gemini 39’, in an almost exact conjunction with the north node of the moon at 1° Gemini 30’.

The Dark Goddess speaks and guides us forward in our collective destiny.

Considered a female demon who was married to the devil, the Arabs believed Algol to be the most malefic star of all. The late medieval and early modern church accused women who were tried and tortured for witchcraft to be associates of the devil. Lilith, the first wife of Adam who refused to be submissive, was thought to cavort with wild demons on the shores of the Red Sea, herself becoming a wind demon who disempowered men with her evil seductions. In Talmudic Law, Algol is connected with Lilith

What begins to emerge through this cross-cultural thread is the story of patriarchal fear of feminine power.

Algol/Lilith/Medusa embodies everything that is feared in the feminine from causing the loss of reason in men, pacts with the devil, unbridled sexuality, refusal to comply with patriarchal control, seduction, rage, and the power to summon spirits. It is only Lilith who knows the ineffable name of God, and it is Lilith who returns to the garden as a serpent to initiate Eve in the knowledge of good and evil.

What emerges is that these female archetypes are demonised, feared and rejected because they are powerful. More powerful than any man-made laws designed to silence and control, more powerful than the gilded cage of patriarchy, and more powerful than reason and intellect. Powerful because they are connected to a primordial authority that is driven by Mother nature and the innate pulse of life that spirals in cycles of renewal including death, darkness, decay, and destruction – a different kind of power from the mind split from body (the so-called enlightened mind) which attempts to win mastery over nature.

Is that not what is happening now even more tenaciously than ever before, the attempted control of the wild, organic, and unpredictable elements of nature including human nature.

Feminine power has been subverted and demonised for hundreds if not thousands of years but don’t be fooled that this is a thing of the past or the dark ages, fear of the feminine is alive and kicking today so much so that the controllers have upped the ante to an alarming degree.

As I was writing this post, I did a quick internet search on the connection between Algol and Lilith, the first page of entries was almost entirely linked to an MLF porn star whose “stage name” is Lilith Algol. This is sadly typical of how the names of the goddess have been subverted and demonised in popular culture and even politics… I am thinking of Isis- the Islamic state military organization. Type “Medusa” into the search bar and you’ll be sure to find an array of manga type, cartoonish depictions of femme fatales, blood smeared or absurdly sexualised as  “Vagina Dentata” whores ready to emasculate and devour any helpless man who crosses her path.

There are a thousand ways to discredit the feminine: from disallowing the term “breast feeding” and changing it to “chest feeding” in order to include trans women; menstrual suppression; economic dependency; slut shaming; inciting fear of violence (real or imagined); ridicule, to name a few. On this point, I must say as a “Karen,” that the stereotyping of women who have the balls to speak out  as “difficult,” is just one of the many ways that the conditioned social order collude with this programming.

In reality the feared feminine is a fully embodied, spirit connected, intelligent mind with a soul guided purpose, refusing to be enslaved or broken by those who live in fear of losing their man-u-factured and illusionary control.

Was the full moon eclipse in Taurus a malefic moon? No, I don’t think it was. What may be closer to the truth is that the Dark Goddess is active and potent specifically at this time of year on account of  various cosmic factors, while on the collective level of humanity’s awakening the powerful feminine is rising in women and men who are waking up to the truth of covert manipulation eating away at our sacred core. That is the real “ghoul,” the  “Al-khul” which means “body eating spirit.”

No other myth shape shifts quite like the myth of Medusa; the popular interpretation often centres around the serpent headed gorgon, monstrous to be behold, petrifying men in her stony eyed stare. Victory from her wrath is won by the solar hero Perseus who aided by the gods finally decapitates Medusa delivering her head to Athena, the first fully formed daughter of patriarchy birthed from the head of Zeus.

Medusa is not entirely satisfied with this version of her story… there is more to it. She is calling to us now, from the dark dank cave on the Western fringes of the world somewhere between sleep and death. She comes to us in dreams, rises in the blood that boils when we are confronted with the injustices of the world, in the long slow gaze at patriarchy that sees through the veils of deception. Medusa’s eye is the unblinking, all-seeing eye, the eye that sees beyond the illusions of the material world and into the spirit of things, into things as they really are.

Medusa is leaving the cave and returning to the Temple.

One of Medusa’s sacred roles is as Protectress of the Serpent Mysteries, and the Golden Apples in the Garden of Hesperides.

Algol, located in the Medusa’s head and carried by Perseus has meaning beyond the monstrous gorgon and her ill fated ways, it represents feminine passion. Algol raises questions about how we express our feminine passion, do we ferment and rage in a state of victimhood played like puppets of the patriarchy responding with unhealed trauma to every ruse and manipulation designed to keep us in fear, or do we rise in power, reclaim our severed head, and reconnect our embodied nature guided wisdom and spirit led soul with a strong undivided and unconditioned mind.

 Do we fear the serpent or do we embrace her; the serpent has the power to heal and the power to destroy.

It’s time to reclaim Medusa’s head… so she can speak.

Autumn Equinox 2021: Reflections, Crossings & Thresholds (with special guests Lilith & Medusa).

Leaf

Image by author

The point of the autumn equinox happens this evening at 20.21 BST when the Sun enters 0° Libra. Looking at the equinox chart what stands out for me is the Moon, asteroid Lilith conjunction in Aries, and the Mars, Medusa conjunction in Libra… but that’s hardly surprising given that myself and a group of other women are completing a journey with the Dark Goddess. Both Lilith and Medusa have played a significant role in our enquiry.

Although this is a personal journey for the women in the group and myself, one thing that has surfaced in our explorations is the interface between the personal and the collective. I work with myth, archetype, the seasons, and planetary influences- or another way of saying this is, in my work which has its roots in shamanism, I like to weave the personal, collective, and the cosmic into tapestries for personal and collective reflection. Working with myths brings them alive, they function as doorways to access archetypal energy as it moves in and through us. We also have an opportunity to sense and feel how these influences operate in the wider culture. Reviewing how we are affected by and affect the collective allows the possibility of transcending our individual life scripts and place those scripts within a larger narrative framework. It didn’t start with you…

Never have I been so aware of the collision between inner and outer realities as during the past two years under the spectre of a global pandemic. Throughout this time we have collectively encountered events that have profoundly affected our lived experiences and in some cases shifted our reality paradigm. Individual trauma that may have been buried or kept at bay by workable structures began to surface in the crumbling of those structure. As the fabric of our perceived reality frayed at the seams under the pressure of eruptions from unconscious forces, confusion set in, and many began to review their personal beliefs which in turn initiated a closer look at the reflections of society as a whole. The personal is political read the slogan  used in the era of second wave feminism, but it is only now that this statement hits home beyond the women’s movement and into all areas of our lives from employment, socialisation, freedom of speech, and even the inside of our bodies. It doesn’t get much closer to home than that.

In our post Freudian world there has been an intensive focus on the causes, symptoms, and effects of trauma; teachers like Gabor Mate, Bessel Van Der Kolk, and Peter Levine enlightened us in the workings of trauma on the individual psyche. Less studied are the implications of collective trauma, though this is now changing and as I write there is a ten-day global online summit taking place on that very topic.

There is potentially a lot that could be said here though I want to offer a short intuitive perspective of the equinox chart, and the energy/medicine available in relation to the archetypes Lilith and Medusa, and the concept of crossing the threshold.

Asteroid Lilith being the only actual physical body of all astrological Liliths is the rawest, most manifest expression of the archetype in our physical lives. She is the voice that rises when we witness and experience injustice; she motivates us to protest, to speak out, to say “no,” and to say “enough,” when necessary. Lilith in this assertion is the rising fire in our bellies that will not be extinguished by manipulation nor the expectations and demands of the super ego. People with a strong asteroid Lilith are often overt in voicing their beliefs and in their rejection of what they perceive to be unacceptable.

With asteroid Lilith conjunct the Moon, the influence is working on our unconscious, habituated self, our emotional patterns, and our need for comfort. The Moon is where unconscious forces play out, giving expression to our primal needs; it shows what makes us feel safe and cared for in our environments and in our relationships. The Moon represents “Mother” and all that she stands for, it indicates how we were nurtured and cared for as babies, or not, as well as any lack we felt at this stage in our development. As we mature, any unmet need will continue to manifest, unconsciously driving us to devise strategies in order to have those needs met. This is why we often repeat dysfunctional patterns or why we are constantly drawn into the same unhealthy dynamics. Attempting to get our rejected needs met by others is often futile, perpetuating a belief that our needs are never met, or that we are unlovable or faulty.

Until we heal our Moon wounds the danger is that we are unconsciously driven by our inner child whose sole purpose is to finally have those needs met. This is an arrested development of the unhappy child which prohibits the happy, creative child in flourishing. In a sense, the Moon wounds prevent us from actualising and expressing our Sun- our essence. This infantilised complex renders us vulnerable in our personal relationships and also in society more broadly as we look to others to make important decisions on our behalf. In this state we have not yet learned personal autonomy or responsibly. Of course mostly this operates below the veil of consciousness and our well adapted persona, though it can be more obvious in certain cases.

Here’s a question, one that I am not going to attempt to answer now even if I could:

Do you consider there is a vested interest to keep humanity in a regressed or childlike state?

Yes, I know that question immediately alerts our “conspiracy theory” antennae, and I have no wish to enter the fray, though it interests me. Recently I was wondering about the law which allows doctors to prescribe puberty blockers to children under the age of sixteen without parental consent- coincidentally this occurred on the same day that the UK government released official guidance about the vaccination of children in schools programme, which again disregards parental consent. Puberty blockers? I asked myself, what is puberty and what does it initiate in a human being. Looking to indigenous cultures it would appear that puberty is a rite of passage that facilitates the crossing of the threshold from childhood to adulthood… what is this if not power?

On another note when we consider that nowhere is our instinctual nature more activated than when it comes to the protection of our children, what are the implications of parental authority being hi-jacked by government in the most intimate of their child’s reality? As Medusa comes out of her frozen state she is keen to know.

Lilith’s role is to show us where we have either been robbed of power or handed our power over as well as showing us where we have allowed ourselves to be manipulated by outside interests. She also draws our attention to our unmet needs (Moon) and shows how susceptible to manipulation we can be when these unconscious drives take over. Lilith, essentially and intimately involved in the relationship between the Earth and Moon, brings our unconscious impulses to the surface and shows how they influence our living reality. As the mediator between the unconscious and the conscious mind, she exists as the subconscious mind, the place where all of our beliefs and ideations dwell and are shaped. Lilith allows us to see how our minds have been moulded and formed. As the grand mistress of the conditioned and therefore the unconditioned mind; Lilith can unravel programmes and learned behaviour like a pro if we are willing to see the truth. She is the ultimate deprogrammer.

The world has an unmet Mother need-

I was talking with a friend recently about the upper-class public-school system where children, especially boys are separated from their mother at a tender age thus disrupting natural attachment. In our conversation we also observed that a similar dynamic exists on the other side of the spectrum within working class families where both parents need to earn a wage to survive, or where single mothers need to work, and children are sent to preschool as early as 0 years. This is a huge subject with complex ramifications that I won’t get into now except to say that under the systems of patriarchy (I am still looking for a better term) many of us are unmothered… we are the unmothered children of patriarchy. Our connection with the Earth herself, the Great Mother, is also in decline, weakened at an alarming rate as we are sucked further into artificial matrices of the machine age.

Moving onto the Mars Medusa conjunction in Libra, the frozen instincts of Medusa (serpent energy), is being thawed in the fires of Mars; sexuality (libido), primal drives, vitality, and masculine assertion are coming back online. Mars takes action and in his higher aspect is the sacred warrior ready to fight for what he believes in. He is ready to protect. As with aspects of the feminine principle, the masculine principle is also thwarted and restricted. Many of us are asking the question, “who’s the daddy… and where is he?”.  At least that’s my question though I am talking with others who are acutely aware of the lack of a strong benevolent fatherly holding and strong masculine containers.

Medusa’s frozen stare turns those who attempt to approach her to stone; when our own feeling, instinctual self is closed down we are no longer operating from the heart centre and are motivated instead by fear and defensiveness. In this state we are capable of turning those around us to stone… look at how divisive and attacking things have become on social media.

Mars gives Medusa the energy to act instead of being stuck in depression and stasis, unable to engage because it’s too painful to feel. In the Myth of Medusa it is the solar hero Perseus (a Mars-like figure) who slays her head off thus liberating Pegasus, the winged horse who represents creativity, and Chrysaor the warrior of the golden sword. It is the masculine principle who sets the frozen feminine free and it is the feminine who roots and births the masculine, an eternal cycle of creativity and evolving consciousness birthed through the dance of polarity.

What the implications of a society embracing a more gender-neutral model where it is not only gender but biological sex that is affected, remains to be seen. Dare I say, and I am well aware that I am now holding a very hot potato, the erasure of biological sex not only affects the material level of physical body but has weighty ramifications through all levels of human experience as well as the possibilities of natural evolution through differentiation and polarity.

Today, on the threshold of equinox, I am embracing balance, reciprocity, equality, and mutuality of masculine and feminine toward the sacred marriage and the birth of the divine child. Masculinity is intimately bound with the archetypal Father as femininity is bound with the archetypal Mother; how these images are expressed and understood in our living and consensual realities is crucially important. Archetypally Mother is mature femininity (not that it’s the only expression of mature feminine though it is only the mature feminine that can give birth), just as Father is mature masculinity.

I am considering rites of passage and initiation into adulthood; most of us, if not all of us, did not cross these thresholds consciously or with any ritual containers. It is not too late to recapitulate our conditioned mind, to take an inventory of what has influenced and moulded us into the person we are today, and to discover where the gaps are. When the powers to whom we have assigned authority, our governments, and leaders, are proving to be unworthy parental figures, it is time to reparent ourselves.

If you are interested in the work I do and would like to find out how I incorporate enquiries like this into experiential groups, courses, and 1-1 therapy; or if you would like to be added to my mailing list you can contact me at-

karen@redpsiral.co.uk

Meetings with the Dark Goddess & Finding the Seeds of Renewal- an online course.

Meetings with the Dark Goddess

Collectively we are in the domain of the Dark Goddess, a liminal space between one state and another; behind the scenes a mystery is unfolding…we are in the birthing canal. It is a precarious time as we have not yet fully let go of the dissolving world or yet grasped the meaning of the new one. Astrologically this state can be likened to the 12th  house, the house of undoing before a new beginning emerges. In the lunar cycle it is the balsamic phase when everything is mulched down from the previous cycle providing fertile compost for the new to be born. It is the Phoenix rising from the ashes. States of transition however are not without danger. Folklorist Arnold Van Gennep describes the perils of transition within society thus,

A house with rooms and corridors in which passages from one to another is dangerous…. danger lies in transitional states, simply because transition is neither one state nor the next, it is undefinable…. the person who must pass from one to another is in danger and emanates danger to others…. the danger is precisely controlled by ritual which precisely separates [her] from [her] old status, segregates [her] for a time and then publicly declares [her] new entry to [her] new status”

Danger lies in the overwhelming and extraordinarily confusing glut of information, widening and fractious polarity, and above all perhaps in the social pressure to conform to an accepted reality that may be at odds with our inner truth. What if our voice sounds different even to loved ones and family? Our authentic voice may be rising up against not only societal injustice and pressure but also against the ways of being that have made us small, sick, victimised, or in any way diminished from who we truly are and what we are here to embody.

In these times we need containers, support,  ritual, and positive affectation. Once the lid comes off, what is revealed is sometimes a life time of playing small, of being fearful, shamed, or shrouded in false self-identity and beliefs about ourselves. And yes, maybe our psyches and our bodies have been damaged in systems that have not always supported life and healthy growth… much has been revealed to this end. I believe we can heal and make the transition a positive, affirming one in which we retain or claim our sovereignty.

Ritual and initiation may offer a connecting thread between the worlds, the inner and outer, the old and new. For the ancient Gnostics, ‘initiation worked to make initiates aware of their unconscious selves as a source of their greatest anxiety and their greatest power’. What have been, or are, your greatest anxieties during the pandemic, and how might they serve you now as a means of transformation and reclamation?

This is the time of the Dark Goddess, suppressed and exiled for millennia, she stirs beneath the Earth inviting us to meet Her, to face Her and to learn from Her wisdom but first we must make the descent into our own unconscious to illuminate what programmes, beliefs, wounding and rejected parts lay waiting to be brought home. She is the rage we feel at the injustices of the world, the terror and fear that paralyses us, and the quivering eruptions that explode when we are tired, stressed, diluted, or fragmented. She stands beside us now, willing us to talk truth, to utter the words from our wombs and release the tension of living in systems and circumstances that tether our soul and feminine essence. We are not victims however, we hold the key to our own liberation, and the Dark Goddess is the ultimate Wayshower. She appears to us in dreams, in our creativity, our sexuality, our bodies, our sickness, our darkness,  our “Enough!”;  She exists in the spaces in between, in the irrational, the liminal, in our rages and passions and the moments of silence. She is the language of the Soul; She speaks in symbols and intuitions. She is the ultimate Liberator; She appears to us as Lilith, Inanna, Ishtar, Hecate, Persephone, Demeter, and the Black Madonna. She dances through the veils.

This course does not provide a platform for political discourse, nor is it able to hold therapeutic space for individual women beyond the possibilities of group sharing. It is a course for women who would like to work with other women in a safe and respectful group exploring what it means to reclaim themselves in a time of change. The course invites the symbolic and mythic worlds as an imaginal aid to help see the bigger picture both personally and collectively. It is for women who are largely unsatisfied with the current narrative and who are therefore seeking a new way forward even while that may necessitate major change in their lives.

Personal astrology and therapeutic sessions may be arranged in addition to the course.

We begin our journey with the Descent of Ishtar, exploring the rich symbolism contained within this myth.

This is a 7-week course, open to all women who would like to be supported through this time as we cross the threshold. The course may also be beneficial for women who are experiencing personal change such as menopause, pregnancy, career change, death of a loved one, or a major new life circumstance.

The cost of the 7 weeks  is £105 (if paid before 1st August); Thereafter it’s £126.

The group will be limited to 13 participants to ensure a level of intimacy, safety & support.

I am a qualified counsellor/shamanic councillor, a professional astrologer and shamanic practitioner. I hold an MA in Myth, Cosmology & the Sacred.

Please contact me for ffi about payment and booking.

Chiron’s Cave

Cave1
In Chiron’s cave- well, my version of it at least. Preparing for part 3 of the “Chiron in Aries: Reclaiming the Self in a Time of Awakening” journey happening this evening with a group of fellow Chironians.
With the group well underway and my own Chiron return building momentum, lots of (sometimes uncomfortable) insights are surfacing. The Chiron wound can bring about a sense of victimhood, especially as we often feel that the wounds we received, like Chiron in the myth, were of no fault of our own. Overcoming victimhood and learning to reclaim personal power and autonomy, especially for the Chiron in Aries group is a big part of the healing.
Also exploring the relationship between Chiron and Black Moon Lilith- one of the topics of tonight’s session. Both Chiron and BML take us into the realm of our energy body to see how we operate on an energetic level and learn how to clear our energy; this is a deep diving into the subconscious and unconscious to see what forces are in operation, often without our awareness. This process is aided in the Chiron return with the spiritual light of Uranus. But it can be a rocky ride…
If you missed the group but would like a Chiron focused astrology session, I am available for online consultations.

Juno: Untangling the Knots of Unholy Matrimony

‘Jupiter and Juno on Mount Ida’ by James Barry 1773

For the past few days asteroid Juno has been courted by the Sun in a close conjunction and while Mars and Venus are in opposition it seems like a good time to spotlight relationships, and in particular marriage (which includes any long term committed partnership).

While Mars and Venus battle it out in a heated passion, the tension between Juno and her consort Jupiter (or Hera and Zeus in the Greek pantheon) has a different tone. For one thing, unlike Venus who frankly couldn’t care less about her wedding vows to Vulcan, Juno is the paragon of matrimonial fidelity, a virtue deeply revered by the culture of the time.

In the mythology different versions of how Juno and Jupiter come into matrimonial union exist but always the outcome is the same – pretty perverse in that both parties consciously strive to cause pain and humiliation to the other- unlike Mars and Venus who are just trying to work out their inherent differences. It would appear that Juno and Jupiter are engaged in what today would be considered a toxic relationship. While Zeus carelessly flaunts his sexual indiscretions in Hera’s face, Hera devises increasingly cruel ploys in her quest for revenge- often taken out on Zeus’ seducees.

Theirs is an unhappy marriage in which no divine child is produced. While Hera engages in parthenogenesis (conception without sperm) to deny Zeus a rightful heir, Zeus impregnates many mortal and immortal women, sometimes consensually, oftentimes not.

As lover/adversaries these two live in a perpetual state of combat separating and getting back together… like that couple… you know the one.

And yet Zeus respects Hera’s opinion and often seeks her counsel. Other signs of Zeus’ need- not necessarily love- of Hera are evident in several accounts such as promising Vulcan the hand of Venus for Hera’s release- which of course may explain Venus’ nonchalant attitude in her marriage… she was a trade off in the Hera/Zeus wars. And don’t we see this with destructive relationships generally- other people unwitingly pilled into the ring?

While Zeus hurls thunderbolts at Hera, Hera binds Zeus to a bed with a leather thong exposing him as a laughingstock and figure of ridicule before all the gods. Once freed Zeus then punishes Hera by suspending her from the heavens with golden bracelets and weights around her ankles. There is just no stopping these two and yet… Hera always, after periods of withdrawal and rejuvenation returns faithfully to her husband.

In the psychology of modern relationships we might wonder why people remain with partners who continue to humiliate and abuse them. Like Hera, no one can ever truly be fulfilled in such a marriage. Friends look on incredulously, unable to comprehend why they would allow themselves to be degraded and mistreated… yet again.

In the relationship parlance of today we would say that Hera and Zeus are trapped in a serious trauma bond tightly woven with co-dependency, narcissism, and maybe a touch of BDSM.

And yet these types of relationships often provide the catalyst to break us open so that we may progress to the next level and a step nearer to true soulful union. Wherever Juno appears in our chart we can be sure of a treasure trove to mine. If we can see beyond our projections and use the pain of relationship to initiate us into our truth, Juno might just set us free.

The myth of Hera and Zeus is also linked to the Golden Apple tree, a wedding gift given to Hera by Gaia as part of a ritual to unite two cultures- this may provide validation for the usurping of the earth goddess traditions by the encroaching Sky gods.

In astrology asteroid Juno can point us to our individual style of ‘doing’ marriage and commitment. It can show us where we are challenged in fulfilling those needs and act as a guide into a deeper understanding of our relationship signature beyond the placement of Venus, Mars, or the Moon. Juno adds another layer, a very important one that has to do with our soul’s need to merge with another and shows us where we are blocked, hijacked or vulnerable to this end.

In psychology of relationships the Juno archetype is a fundamental component in a three-fold process toward full soul union with another. This applies to both men and women.

Lilith the dark maid is the first stage, she simply will not tolerate any form of inequality or abuse, she does not wait around to try and work it out, and she ain’t suggesting marriage counselling. Instead she claims her freedom by pleasing herself. She will not be tamed and is a law unto herself… but eventually that becomes lonely and the soul calls for union.  

Juno as divine consort is where we learn about equality, commitment, sacrifice, and surrender. It is where we get to experience ourselves in the territory of infidelity, betrayal, insecurity, and abandonment- or in secure loving attachement based on trust and respect. Who are we in this? In what ways do we sacrifice ourselves to be loved? We learn just what it takes to become whole in ourselves and still be able to open deeply and surrender to another. Any inequalities, abuses, power struggles, and martyrdom will be highlighted, played out and brought to our attention in order to be balanced… but often very painfully.

The magic of relationships is that until we finally honour Juno we will repeatedly attract partners who will show us the next big lesson we need to learn on our journey toward alchemical union.

“In true occult terms, marriage is a path of transcendence that transforms the ego’s separateness into the larger whole.”

By house placement, sign and aspect Juno describes our fundamental needs in marriage and shows both our potential pathology and potential liberation.

The third element in the triad toward self-realized partnership is Psyche, this is when we achieve full soul union with another through the principle of Eros…

If you would like an astrological relationship portrait exploring Juno and other relationship signifiers in your chart I am available for on-line consultations.

* Credit goes to Demetra George and her book on the Asteroid Goddesses.