Astrology

ASTERIA & ARTEMIS | Aries, the Ram

Introduction

Once upon a time there were two lovely ladies.
One was named Amelia.
Every night she sat near an ancient Oak Tree to observe the Stars as they move across the Sky.
The other was named Sara.
Every day she sat beneath an ancient Oak Tree to listen and talk with the Animals.
Under two different Oak Trees in two different places, Amelia and Sara communed with the Heavens and the Earth, each in her own way.
After many years of watching and listening, Amelia and Sara finally found each other.
When their Spirits came together the Stars shot across the Sky and the Animals leaped with joy!
They were to be messengers; messengers of the Constellations and of the Animals – Asteria and Artemis.


WHO IS ARTEMIS?

MEET SARA.

The idea for this series stemmed from thinking about the Chinese zodiac and its basis in the nature of animals, along with my own work and study of animals in spirituality, and an ongoing fascination with Astrology. In its depictions of the constellations, it occurred to me that the Western zodiac also has a deep connection with the nature of animals; and some of the animals depicted happen to be humans. I wanted to explore the animal influences in our interpretations of the Western zodiac signs, as well as the stories and mythologies behind their associations.

Artemis is the Greek goddess of the wilderness, mistress of the animals… she represents many aspects as a protector of Nature. Daughter of Zeus, and twin sister of Apollo, Artemis’ mother and Asteria were sisters! As much as I love studying the myths and stories behind it all, the astrological aspect is not my personal path of study. So I immediately thought of Amelia as my collaborator on this project; her planetary insight is sharp and her delivery is fresh. She is also equally fascinated with how these particular animals became associated with these astrological signs and how we can deepen our connection with the Heavens and the Earth.

As we move through this astrological year, I hope that you will be able to connect more deeply with the pull of the Heavens by calling on the Earthly creatures their constellations illustrate.

Who is Asteria?

It's me! 

When Sara approached me about writing this series, I was thrilled. Often times people think of astrology as lofty or arcane, but in truth it is far from that. In my practice, following and aligning with the rhythms of the stars has been one of the most grounding practices I’ve ever found. What could be more down-to-earth than learning the myths by which harvests were reaped and sown for centuries?

Asteria, the Greek oracular goddess whose name means “of the stars”, was the mother of Hekate – a deity much revered in modern magical circles, and for good reason. In that way, Asteria gives birth to witchcraft, herbal knowledge, and the moon. That astrology and magic were linked since ancient times was a profound discovery for me, and one that made a partnership with Sara all the more exciting. (An aside: imagine my surprise when I discovered asteroid Asteria was exactly on top of Neptune in my natal chart!)

It is my sincere hope that, through this series, the alchemical dictum “as above, so below” will begin to crystallize in your psyche. The sky and the earth are intimately entwined, just as the sky god and earth goddess have been in so many spiritual traditions throughout history. As the stars move, so does nature, and so do our lives. And so it is.


The Ram as Aries

The image of Ram as the symbol for Aries, the Greek God of War, originates from the Argonautica - specifically, the myth of Jason and the Golden Fleece. In order to prove himself to the King of Thessaly, Jason was tasked with taking some of the magical Golden Fleece from the Sacred Grove of Aries. His journey is a long and arduous one until Medea, sorceress and princess of Colchis, offers her assistance and Jason is successful. Similarly, acquiring a bit of the Golden Fleece from Aries is one of the tasks Aphrodite assigns to Psyche as a condition for her reunion with Eros. 

There is an aspect of daring inherent in these myths. The hero or heroine must brave great danger to body and soul in order to find and take a bit of the Fleece for their own. That is the soul of Aries - tenacity, fortitude, and an eagerness to achieve the seemingly impossible in order to realize their dreams. We often think of them as restless pioneers - they are the first zodiac sign, after all - but perhaps there is more to their quest. Something deeper drives them to search after their personal "Golden Fleece." In Jason's case, it was dedication to his personal truth and in Psyche's case, it was true love. What deeper ambitions, truths, and desires are motivating your personal quest?

Various theories exist as to what the "Golden Fleece" may actually be, including authority to reign, wealth, and alchemical knowledge. Regardless of the object of desire, it remains that the Fleece is something to be coveted - an important facet of the Aries psyche. Again, as the first zodiac sign, they take great pride in being the best at whatever they do and are willing to risk whatever unlikely path may accomplish their goals. The adage "if it's worth doing, it's worth doing well" is certainly an Aries sentiment. 

 

 

The Ram as Animal

By Sara Magnuson

Nimble, agile, and sure-footed, Ram is able to seize opportunity in seemingly impossible situations. They trust the ability of their unlikely bodies to jump and maintain balance when others would doubt themselves. The excellent depth perception and peripheral vision of Ram gives them the ability to see opportunities that others may not; indeed, their heightened senses of vision and smell make them intimately attuned to their surroundings. As ruminant animals, Rams extract a high amount of nutrients from their plant-based diets. Take a cue from Ram's highly efficient digestion and be deliberate with things that fuel you, making sure you're getting all you can out of them.

The skin and fleece of Ram have been revered for ages - hides and wool to create objects from the practical and mundane to the magnificent and magical. When thinking of Ram's hide, remember that our skin is considered an organ and is, in fact, the largest organ of our body. Protecting all the delicate things inside, our skin is a huge sensor packed with nerves and keeps our brain in touch with the outside world. Ram's majestic fleece provides intense protection from the elements allowing it to thrive in diverse climates and environments. It is this protective and armor-like quality of Ram's fleece that contributes to its magical qualities. We must also consider the impressive horns of Ram - Sacred Spirals borne right from the head indicating potent creativity and mental acuity.  

Socially, Rams desire order and prefer a defined structure, establishing who is in charge and how each member of their social group falls in rank. They are gregarious and form strong, close relationship sub-groups within their flock. Rams, and Sheep in general, are more intelligent and sensitive than we often think, having a good memory and the ability to differentiate facial expressions and the emotional states of other animals. This means that you frequently see more than others think you do and more than you let on. Rams are also very good at hiding any injury or sickness so as not appear weak, which can be good for avoiding predators, but as a personality trait can cause unnecessary suffering. Be mindful of asking for help when you need it and not letting your pride get in the way.

 

Call on Ram when...

  • you need a burst of physical energy
  • you need to take action, seize opportunities, and be forthright
  • you are beginning new endeavors and need to take that charge-forward step
  • you need to pause and pay attention to all of your senses - look around, sniff the air, perk up your ears
  • you need to hone your intellect and harness the power of your mind 


Keep in mind...

  • Ram's tendency to be overly aggressive. Be sure to think before acting
  • Ram's tendency to hide their inner struggles. Remember that asking for help is not a weakness
 

 

Rituals for Ram

 

Sensing Meditation

Aries energy is, at it's core, associated with and felt in the physical body. Think of Ram's highly attuned senses of vision, hearing, and touch, as well as the connection between those senses in your body. Take a moment to sit still, wherever you choose. First, look around you. Notice not just what you see, but how much you can see. Pay attention to the expanse and limits of your vision. Pay attention to all the light and colors you can see. Look at the big things and the small things and take it all in. Next, close your eyes and listen. What are the loudest and softest sounds you can hear? What do the sounds you hear tell you about your environment? Lastly, with your eyes still closed, pay attention to your sense of touch. Feel the energy radiating from your own body. How does the air feel on your skin? What sensations do you feel from your environment?

 

Altar Work

It is possible to procure ethically sourced Ram's horns, but if you cannot or don't want to do that, acquire a piece of wool (and raw, unprocessed wool is even better - ask at your local yarn supplier). Place the wool at the center of your altar space or make a separate space for this work, as you see fit. Surround the wool with a small bowl of water, a plant (a small container of grass is perfect for Ram, but any green plant will work well), and a candle. Light the candle and place your hand on the wool. As you watch the flame and reflect on the fiery nature of Aries, ask for Ram's essence to guide you and show you the ways to achieve your goals.


If you decide to keep this altar up for the duration of the Sun's transit through Aries, make sure you refresh the water periodically and keep the plant healthy and strong. And remember, always observe common sense fire safety when burning candles, especially near wool.

 

 

ABOUT SARA MAGNUSON

Sara is a crafter of spiritual supplies, a reader of cards, a diviner of animals, and the co-founder of Candlesmoke Chapel. Her personal practice is eclectic, animistic, and ancestral. The guidance she provides is based in the messages of Nature and its role in how we move through this world.

Connect with Sara at candlesmoke chapel.

chat with @candlesmokechapel on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.

Sara Magnuson.png
 

 

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TWELVE FACES OF STYLE | HEAVENLY BODIES | Lingerie For Your Sign


THIS POST FIRST APPEARED AS A PART OF TWELVE FACES OF STYLE, A COLLABORATIVE PROJECT WITH SACRED STYLIST JACQUELYN TIERNEY, THAT EXAMINED STYLE THROUGH THE LENS OF ASTROLOGY.


TRYING TO BEWITCH SOMEONE SPECIAL TODAY? YOU NEED TO KNOW THIS.

THERE'S ONE THING IN YOUR NATAL CHART THAT REVEALS MORE ABOUT YOUR SEDUCTION STYLE THAN ANY OTHER: YOUR VENUS SIGN.

 

The Venus sign shows how you love, what you find beautiful, and what you value - all crucial components of any good style statement, but especially one so intimate.

If you don't know your Venus sign, stop over here and find out!

Once you know your Venus sign, you can select your lingerie to suit that sign's unique desires and kinks. When you're aligned with your Venus sign in (and out of!) the bedroom, you get a confidence boost from knowing that you're following your highest cosmic truth in some of the most private and exciting areas of your life. And confidence? That's irresistible.

It's just as fun to experiment with styles from your sun, rising, or moon signs. Or, mix and match! Make sure you read the description for all four for inspiration. 

 

 

ARIES

Never a shrinking violet, Aries favors bold, feisty patterns with a cheeky side. One source tells us her personal collection includes fruit, bees, and even reindeer! We like the thought of Aries in saucy retro cherries.

Red is the obvious color choice for your sign as it is the de rigeur Ariean good luck talisman, but you'd do just as well to add it to your lips. Aries can also pull off bright neons that would make other signs tremble at the sight - think electric pink, day-glow yellow, and ultramarine.

Movement is essential to Aries as their sign loves to move via exercise, dance, and daring feats of bravery. As such, you'll want to make sure nothing is too restricting and that there's plenty of give in your garments.

 

TAURUS

As we've established, Taurus is the zodiac's femme fatale. Ruled by Venus herself, they're undeniably sensual and the most likely of all the signs to be seen lounging on a vintage sofa in a languid odalisque pose. They do Bond girl chic incredibly well.

For lingerie, Taureans specialize in earthy tones and ornate florals fit for an old world mansion. They pair them with touches of luxe fabrics like suede or fur that feel tantalizing against the skin. Leather is also a very Taurean material, so we wouldn't be surprised if they had a riding crop or two in their drawer.

We love this embroidered bustier set from Anthropologie for Taurus - warm colors and flowers so pretty you can practically smell then!

 

GEMINI

We all know Gemini ladies are more likely to use dirty talk to get their way in the bedroom than any particular ensemble. Still, she's ever the playful sex kitten, and Gemini ladies love babydolls. Perhaps it's the duality of the innocent look with lascivious desires, but our Gemini sources say they can't resist a good nightgown. 

Bonus points for accessorizing with a silky robe. Geminis are magpies, so having the perfect accessories is a must. "You can keep the heels on...", and that sort of thing.

The Hanky Panky set above is just right for Gemini. It's the ingenue look that Gemini does so well, but the ribbon ties on the hips know exactly what they're looking for!

 

CANCER

As always, Cancer is all about comfort - for both parties. Fabrics must be the softest of the soft as she welcomes her lover into a cozy embrace. We love the La Perla bodysuit (above) for Cancer, a smooth and seductive piece without any bothersome trimmings.

Cancer rules femininity itself, so expect this lady to gravitate towards the most feminine looks available. Ruffles, lace, and pompoms anyone? Like a layered cake, there's really no going too over the top with this. Girly is your sweet spot. 

An aside: Cancer also rules cooking, so a sexy apron ensemble or Beyoncé Knowles "I cooked this meal for you naked" moment might be in order.

 

LEO

Leo is the most likely to rock a leopard print ensemble (pictured above) or wear lingerie as outwear, hands down. Though their adornments of choice may be wild or dramatic, no one would dare question them because they rock them with such panache.

This may also be the sign most likely to wear a bustier, and to great effect. Many Venus in Leo women, like Nicole Kidman in Moulin Rouge and the indomitable Madonna, wear the corset like it's their job. In Dita Von Teese's case, it is!

The zodiac's golden child, Leos would also look stunning in gold and bronze pieces.

 

VIRGO

Venus in Virgo adores the detail of lingerie. It's the artistry behind the garments that really turns them on. They love draping their bodies in the finest fabrics, tucking and pinning so all their assets can be perfectly on display.

The above playsuit from Victoria's Secret is a Virgo dream, with slim straps, silk ribbons and the sign's signature deep blue. Bonus points for wearing it under tailored work attire for the sexy secretary vibe that Venus in Virgo so naturally radiates.

One rule of thumb with Virgo intimates: never look cheap. Virgo shuns vulgarity and would rather go naked than wear poorly made underthings.

 

LIBRA

Also ruled by the Love Goddess herself, Libra is the untouchable beauty. Inherently graceful and inspired by royalty, Venus in Libra reigns in the bedroom and has a lingerie collection fit for a queen.

Ever devoted to balance and harmony, this Venus seeks out pieces that complement her natural beauty with understated colors and intricate details. Like fellow Venus in Libra Florence Welch, her bedroom attire has an ethereal quality that seems at home in any era.

No Libra seduction is complete without the perfect fragrance. Every Libra has her own blend, preferably bespoke.

 

SCORPIO

Scorpio rules the taboo, so Venus in this sign does classic vamp like no other. A siren at heart, her wardrobe is black and blood red in voluptuous shapes that flaunt and taunt. She knows what she wants, and exactly how to get it. 

The Kiki de Montparnasse balconette with black lace bottoms is the ultimate in Scorpio lingerie - to the point, and very, very sexy. It's simple, which is perfect: Venus in Scorpio needs little adornment, as their innate charisma speaks for itself. 

Scorpio also has a mysterious streak and is known for her uncanny ability to attract lovers into her web. We vote her most likely to have a sex magick mojo in her lingerie drawer.

 

SAGITTARIUS

A true lingerie collector, Sagittarius has pieces from every far-flung corner of the globe - more than likely to remind her of the lovers she's left waiting in every port.

Venus in Sagittarius favors saturated hues and a spicy color palette, from chianti reds to Moroccan blues. She's the sign mostly likely to have a vintage fetish, snapping up 1920s nightgowns or mid-century caftans in a heartbeat.

We love this deep red pairing from Bona Drag for Venus in Sagittarius. The color is as fiery as she is, and the top would look just as beautiful with jeans, boots, and a kimono - all Sagittarius must-haves. The bottoms can be her little secret.

 

CAPRICORN

Capricorn is a lingerie purist. She loves to treat herself to tried-and-true designer labels, like La Perla or Kiki de Montpartnasse, and who can blame her? Venus in Capricorn works hard!

Likely a minimalist, the idea of having a "uniform" appeals to her as well. She's probably in the market for the perfect nude bra like the one in the set above. Not too plain, not too overdone. That's just how Venus in Capricorn likes it. 

Ultimately, it's all about power. Ruled by Saturn, the planet of wealth and success, Venus in Capricorn wants to wear lingerie that makes her feel like she can accomplish anything.

 

AQUARIUS

As we've discussed, Aquarians come in many different shapes and sizes, from girl-next-door to androgynous to rebel. Just like their personalities, their lingerie drawers are eclectic and exhaustive, with something for every taste.

The pink set above is Venus in Aquarius nirvana - perfectly casual so as not to suspect anything, preferably vanilla flavored, and with a side of kink.

Like their Venus in Gemini sisters, Venus in Aquarius loves to accessorize - this time with S&M collars, spikes, glitter, and other touches that add a bit of shock value.

 

PISCES

Pisceans are the poets and mystics of the zodiac, associated with "self-undoing" by traditional astrologers. Perhaps that's why Venus in Pisces looks so brilliant in bondage gear! (Yes, you heard that right - our research insists!)

Case in point: legendary pin-up and Venus in Pisces Bettie Page. She made people's sexual fantasies a reality, if you have Venus in Pisces, that's your superpower too. Never one to shy away from a new experience, Pisces ladies can push their own boundaries with an exquisite ensemble from Agent Provocateur (above) - just be sure to do so safely and consentually.

Not into bondage? Watery fabrics like silk and chiffon suit you just as well, especially under the light of the stars.

 

 

Before we go, let's address one very important order of business. Do you ever need a reason adorn yourself in beautiful underthings? Absolutely not.

Whether it's a Hallmark holiday or because you're just feeling yourself, we at Twelve Faces encourage you honor your beauty as often as you like. We think you are all beautiful exactly as you are, and you deserve to show it off.

Happy Valentines Day!

JACKIE + AMELIA

 

There are twelve faces of style. Which one are you?

"AT FIRST GLANCE, FASHION AND SPIRITUALITY MAY SEEM RELATIVELY UNRELATED.

IN FACT, SOME PEOPLE MAY CALL THEM OPPOSITES.

WE RESPECTFULLY DISAGREE."

 

Today, design muse Jacquelyn Tierney and I are launching Twelve Faces of Style: A Star-Studded Guide to Fashion + Design. Come along with us as we explore fashion, art, design, and architecture through the eyes of the stars and reveal how to incorporate your astrology into your look, online and off. We believe in honoring your spirit, dressing for your soul, and (of course) Saint Laurent.

It starts with a free call on Wednesday, June 17 at 8 PM Eastern and downloadable style guide, and that's just the beginning.

 

SIGN UP AND DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE STYLE GUIDE HERE.

 

If you have any stellar-sartorial Q's you'd like to hear answered on the call, you can submit them after you confirm your attendance. The call will be recorded for our far-flung soul sisters.

In the meantime, make sure to follow us Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest, and don't forget to tag your conversations with #twelvefaces or #12faces!

Until then, shine on!

Ask Me Anything: Elemental Astrology Edition!

Can you believe it? Elemental Astrology has been around for 2 weeks! You all have blown me away with all the pictures of the course in action. Seriously, it's sheer delight to see the work in practice, which was my dream for this thing from the beginning. To everyone who's taken the time to send me your photos and emails and messages about how much you're loving it: THANK YOU.

A few days before the course launched, I asked my wonderful e-letter subscribers to ask me absolutely anything about Elemental Astrology or my personal astrology practice. (Not on the list? Sign up here!) I've rounded them up, and answered them below. Happy reading!

 

I feel the need to celebrate the coming eclipse but I don't know why. Could you suggest something (altar, prayer, whatever)?

You're not alone. Lots of people celebrate the moon's monthly cycle (including me!), and eclipses are like supercharged new and full moons. The average moon cycle can be intense, so it's no wonder you're picking up on Lady Luna's amplified vibrations!

New moons correspond to new beginnings and growth, and full moons align with completions and illumination. With the full moon eclipse coming up, think about what part of your life you want to bring out of the shadows and into the light. You may want to light a candle to represent that desire. Or, try going outside under the full moon's light and simply breathing. Ultimately, the way you celebrate eclipses is up to you. The moon rules your instincts, so during eclipses, expect them to be in high alert. Ask yourself, "How does this eclipse feel in my body?" Do you feel it in your heart, your head, or somewhere else completely? Focus on that feeling, and go from there.

If you want to learn more about eclipses, there's a full chapter on the moon in Elemental Astrology. Sneak peek: I talk about keeping a moon journal and developing your own lunar practice!

 

I have natal Sun conjunct Saturn in Aquarius in 10th - does this mean self-expression will always be crushed?

Oh dear! First of all, the answer is NO. Every planet, sign, and house has a higher and lower expression. The stars can act as allies, challengers, or sometimes both at once. Some astrologers are very negative in their interpretations of traditionally "challenging" planets like Saturn, but if you ask me, they're only giving you half the picture. Saturn rules the tenth house and is also associated with professional accomplishment, so this is an amazing setup to have in your career house!

Having Saturn on your Sun may make you a conscientious or a bit Type-A, but that's only because you've got the potential to be a seriously high achiever, and deep down, you know it. The best way to work this is to approach everything like a boss. Be devoted to your work. Don't be afraid to go after ambitious goals. You've got the makings of a mogul here, sister.

One of my main goals with Elemental Astrology is to teach you all aspects of the stars so that you can be empowered by them instead of stressed out. It doesn't mean you'll be able to avoid tough alignments all together, but you'll be able to recognize them and prepare well in advance.

I already know astrology pretty well. Will Elemental Astrology teach me anything new?

Absolutely! Elemental Astrology is a guide to my personal astrology practice, so you'll get imagery, exercises, and prompts that you won't see anywhere else.

The purpose of this course is to facilitate true intimacy with the stars. To quote exactly:

If you’re looking for a list of personality traits for your sun sign, you won’t find that here. Try a Google search instead. The same goes for your moon sign, rising sign, and so on. This is not a reference book. It’s a space in which you can discover the meaning of the stars for yourself.

To sum it up? It's intuitive, sacred, and all about practice.

 

How do you know the difference between big shake up in the world or culture or politics, and one individual's personal breakdown/breakthrough? Is there a place in the natal chart to look for such things, or a specific planet to focus on to gauge it? (For example: during the time of the Arab Spring, Occupy Wall Street, etc., Uranus was Square Pluto...)

This question is from Hilary Parry, my tarot mentor. True to form, she started work on the course the day it came out!

I'll admit, after launch day I completely burned out and hibernated for an entire weekend. After a few days, she replied with this message:

I THINK I may have answered my own question about telling the difference between personal and worldly astrology: is it because of the difference between the Personal Planets and the Outer Planets? For example, my example of Uranus Square Pluto (both outer planets interacting with each other)?

Yes, yes, yes! Gold stars for Hilary, y'all.

So, you see? This course really does teach you how to read the stars for yourself! Mission accomplished.

 

In honor of the Libra full moon, you can use the code eclipse to get 20% off your purchase of Elemental Astrology. The code expires at midnight on Monday, April 6, so get it while it's hot!