Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Asteroid Goddesses: Juno, Vesta, Pallas, & Ceres

An absolute must-have in the portfolio of psychological astrology.  I recommend this for everyone who studies the subjects.   Additionally, this book covers material that will help men and women in balancing each other's life purpose and mission in the 21st century.  I would also note that this book also discusses the minor goddesses, such as Psyche, Amor, Pandora, Diana, and more.

From Asteroid Goddesses by Demetra George:  The naming of so many asteroids after female deities paralleled an awakening of a feminine-defined principle in women, men and society. Around 1973, when the first astrological asteroid ephemeris was published and astrologers began extensive consideration of asteroids, the women's movement emerged, and new aspects of feminine expression began to awaken in human consciousness. Women became imbued with the seed possibilities of feminine creativity and intelligence that expanded and transcended the traditional roles of wife and mother.

This period also marked the rediscovery of women's ancient history, the growth of women's culture in creative and professional areas, and the rebirth of the Goddess in women's spirituality. The lives of men and that of society in general have also been affected by the activation and growing influence of a right-brain, feminine-polarity, holistic way of perceiving the world.

In the symbolic language of astrology, the goddess asteroids provided new archetypes that specifically addressed the current psychological and social issues that arose from this activation of the feminine principle.

Only two of the usual planets, the Moon and Venus, represent feminine archetypes, and these are of the mother and the wife. Until the asteroids, astrology had to fit all other women's experiences into masculine- defined archetypes. What was needed was a set of symbols by which to describe the other avenues of feminine expression that exist today. During the years since 1972 when astrologers have observed the significance of asteroids in birth charts, they have uncovered a wealth of information that adds insight and understanding above and beyond that gained from the usual ten planets.

The Asteroid Goddesses in the Charts of Men

Just as the planets named after male gods pertain to the lives of women, these asteroids named for female goddesses are also important in the lives of men. The recognition and honoring of one's contrasexual side completes and strengthens the personality, embracing the unintegrated energies that are often sources of trouble.

Ceres expands on the Moon's symbolism by further illuminating the relationship of a man to his mother and also to women and other nurturing figures in his adult life. In addition, Ceres signifies a man's own tender, caregiving side and the ways in which this part of his nature can find expression. Typical manifestations of Ceres energies in a man are teaching and mentoring, pediatrics and pedagogy, farming and gardening, cooking and nutrition, medicine and therapy, ecology and environmental protection, and, of course, his part in helping his own children thrive and grow.

Pallas, for a man as well as a woman, can symbolize his capacity for strategy, his quest for clarity and truth, his sense of justice, the acquisition of skill and ingenuity in useful arts, and the ability to channel life energy for healing. Just as she can in women, Pallas can signify either a man's rejection of the feminine within himself, or the drive to integrate the opposite sexual polarity into his psyche. The placement of Pallas can also suggest how a man perceives the strong, independent women in his life. This usually has to do with his sense of his own competence.

Juno can signify a man's style of dealing with marriage and other forms of partnership, including, in some cases, business partnerships. Her placement determines how the struggle between the self and the other plays out, and whether the partnerships a man enters into are likely to be equal or unequal. Juno may also show the sort of wife a man is likely to pick, and his attitude toward married women in general. This asteroid has to do with the man in his procreative role as husband and father, and, by extension, in any joint venture for the production of a new entity. Just as she does for a woman, Juno may also show how a man deals with the infidelity of a partner.

Vesta signifies a man's relationship to himself as a complete being, apart from relationships with others. Her placement can suggest to a man how he can best become still, look within, and tend to Deity or his inner spirit. Just as she does in women, Vesta can also signify a man's urge to conserve and preserve the home, the state, the culture and its institutions.

The Asteroids as Developmental Stages

When you combine the above basic symbolism of the first four asteroids with the order in which they were discovered, the four great goddess asteroids form yet another self-contained symbol system, one that defines four stages of human, and most particularly feminine, lives:

Ceres, the first asteroid to be discovered, governs the first stage of life, when the person's primary focus is the mother. This is the stage of the Child.

Pallas, the second to be discovered, suggests the time of life when the child starts looking toward the father to be initiated into the rules of the world outside the home. This period starts when many girls become tomboys and dream of their future careers. It continues into the period when young people are out in the world studying or working or pursuing a career but are not yet parents. In a woman's life this pre-reproductive stage is that of the Maiden.

Juno, the third asteroid to be discovered, was the archetypal wife on Olympus and was also a protectress of childbirth. She suggests the one stage of a person's life that is commonly devoted to marriage and reproduction. In a woman, this is the stage of the Matron.

Vesta, the last-discovered of the four, represents the final stage of life when a woman's focus commonly turns away from child-bearing and child-rearing, and she turns toward cultivating herself as a separate individual, apart from her family relationships. In women, this post-reproductive period is the stage of the Crone. This supplements the pre-reproductive or self-contained Virgin symbolism already mentioned in connection with Vesta.

Arranging the asteroids in this way gives further clues to their meaning. Naturally, however, a woman may embody the symbolism of any of these asteroids at any time in her life.  These life stages pertain to a woman's life in particular, something that has until recently been largely neglected. They of course have their analogies in the lives of men, but in a slightly modified form, since reproduction does not tend to be so central to men's lives and many men can reproduce well into old age.

Like women, men typically have a Ceres stage in which their primary attachment is to their mother, a Pallas stage where they are initiated by the father into the outside world, a Juno stage when they are husbands and fathers working to sustain a family, and a Vesta stage when they are free to retire and cultivate their inner lives.

1 comment:

Angelles LaVeau said...

Can't wait to add this to my library!!