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    The Planets as Feminine Archetypes
The Rediscovery of the Goddess in Astrology.



 By Sophia


    Did you ever stop to think that of the 9 planets (and the Sun) that we use in astrology, only TWO of them are considered feminine?! Why is that?
    Astrology is thousands of years old, at least six by archeological evidence. It is definitely true it was founded by Pagan, goddess worshiping cultures and it virtually has no connection to Judeo-Christianity, except in the last thousand years or so. Those faiths, Judiasm and  Christianity which were essentially patriarchal, transformed the concepts of the divine planets from worship of the old gods and goddess  in their form of star gods and goddess.into a male-oriented science. Of course the planets became men!
     The fact that I am being given the opportunity to teach astrology classes again, this gives me a chance to reexamine ideas about astrology that every one holds without thinking twice about them. Doing research about them and thinking careful about the subject I find that many of the elements of astrology, specifically about the plants which were in fact feminine in the ancient world, have been either neuter or  changed to masculine. This should come as no surprise to most women who have studied history. Let‘s look at some of the planets and ideas and explore what they mean in terms of feminine issues. Let‘s start with the furthest  planet, Pluto.
    Pluto of course is the god of the underworld and as the furthest out planet it is deemed, cold and in hospitable. It is the hard to reach planet the one that is so slow moving that it effects a generation when it changes signs. In fact Pluto is  the planet of transformation and its, effects are long lasting and very intense. Pluto the God became enamored with Persephone the young daughter goddess of the mother goddess Demeter, and pulled her into the underworld and according to myths reigns six months of the year, and the earth becomes cold and barren until she comes back out again in the spring and the earth then blooms and becomes fertile again. In fact the power of Pluto, the planet that is the transformation from darkness of the underworld to the light of the earth in spring, could not exit without the feminine element Persephone and this is something that should be thought about, when talking about the element of Pluto.  Persophone as Queen of the Dead empowered Pluto gave him the power of life that is so important to be the lord of death. Without life, death and survival no meaning.
     Now Neptune (Poisidon) was god of the ocean and seas. Neptune is also seen as muted change, also illusional like water, you can never tell how deep it (or he/she) is. Neptune gives you that insight. It is the planet of dreams and illusions, Neptune is very visionary, but also being water emotions it can run high tide or simple ebb away. Most of these ideas were long connected to the Goddess of the ocean before Nepture appeared. She who was known as Tiamat the old middle east or the great abyss. Isis was also invoked as the goddess of the sea and in fact her traditional robes were blue. Neptune seems lacking when we look at it we “see” and think about those qualities that are deeply feminine in origin. The psychic ability, the abilities of inspiration of deep, deep dream work. These are feminine qualities they are not masculine qualities at all.
    Now lets take a look at Uranus, another interesting ancient Greek Gods. Yet right off, the game is over. Uranust the God actually translates as Ur-Ana, Queen of winds, Queen of the Mountains! Uranus is the symbol of the sky, the first sky God and we can see Uranus as the bolt out of the blue. Uranus take you by surprise with  quick insight, and the in depth highly unusually way that this energy is. Uranus sees a different side to everything and the solutions are usually very unorthodox.  The sky God in fact in most ancient cultures was the Goddess. In Egypt, Nuit or the Goddess who was filled with stars would have been an example. Isis is another star Mother in ancient Egypt and we can also talk about Ishtar, the great middle eastern Goddess, who was also called Inanna.
 She was the Goddess of the heavens, the goddess of the sky who bent down  to bestow her power on the earth. This sudden bolt, sudden power, is also known as Shakti or great explosion of Energy that suddenly zaps or suddenly transforms everything is the product of women as well.
     Saturn is  the most deceptive in terms of  being identified as a “male” form. Saturn has been venerated as a earthy restrictive, male, daddy figure.  It is usually seen as negative. It can hold you back or make you do things over again. In fact Saturn hides behind an interesting veil, the veil of the dark goddess.  We can call her Kali or we can call her black Isis , or the virgin of Guadalupe. She is in fact the black mother Saturn, more of veil of the vast feminine energy. It is in fact the Goddess of Death, her symbol a scyth, the Goddess of solidity of the black earth. We can see that in human relations we can see this when we do charts the relationship of the father.  Women who have passed their menopause can often be seen as having a strong saturnian influence, which is not at all negative. The feminine energy Saturn is seen as understanding piercing the mysterious creating deep wisdom.
    Jupiter is seen as a planet that is firmly visualized as male energy, but why? Jupiter‘s themes of wealth, luck, optimism, abundance, plenty and of prosperity seem more female!. Interesting enough a lot of these traits taken over by Zesus, were originally attributed to his wife Hera. They became “married“ in fact when the cult of Zesus stormed through the area of where the cult of Hera was strong. We can see that over three thousand years ago, or more that the concept of the Goddess was replaced by male icons. Like the great sky mothers Nuit and Inanna, and Neith were replaced by sky fathers. These goddesses and others have all been “Jupiter” in their cultures. We can search thoughtout many mythologies and find the powers of Jupiter are not simple male in essencethey are often attributed to women. For women who make and hold down the home or go out and bring home the money.
    Mars, the god of war. Many of us look at war as a male problem. Aggressiveness, power, energy , are often lumped into with Mars. They are seen as simply male. This is not always so. Yes, of course Mars in its understandable form is very masculine and very yang. Even its symbol is very phallic, yet in ancient times the symbol of Mars did not simple refer to the red of war, the red of anger, the red of masculine energy. One of the earliest concepts of Mars was of menstrual blood, and the power of menstruation in women. We need to think about that in our terms of our energy and power as women. In fact we should consider that this is the primal or original martial energy. Not war or anger, but menstruation, casting off the old or renewing the energy and strength we feel at that time and it  should be channeled to constructive ways. The pain of growth. We should look at our charts with that in mind that this maybe an aspect of ourselves to channel our energy. If we look at Mars as the imagine of shatki or energy we see that women can transform their entire chart.
    Venus is the planet of Love sensualism, and sexuality. Venus is also connected with the power of fire as well. Strange looking through these old books of astrology that Venus would be fire. Now that does not seem to make a whole lot of sense. In fact going back through history and looking at the power of Venus it is easy to see why Venus would be connected  with some of these things. Isis, as passion was called the “Red Queen.” Venus also, called Aphrodite, is  connected to  water, roses , love , sexuality , sensualism, and exorcism. This is very powerful seduction very outward, not at all passive and coquettish like the Judaic-Christian view of Venus. Look at some of our images of Venus from the middle ages and the renaissance. The classical passive voluptuous feminine. As the goddess Ishtar, she was called the morning sun. It was Ishtar who in many ways controled the fate  of the kings. Before that she was called Inanna  the keeper of the heavens and underworld.  In  ancient times Venus is the goddess as the one in control, who enters the underworld seeking the answers to life and death. For the sake of her male lover it is she that makes the decisions and uses the energy and the power of love. The active use of exoticism or libido is extremely important. In todays world we know very well that sexuality is also a power that women have as well as men. This is a power that can be used like in the ancient Greek play Lyssestrata where the women use their sexual powers from having their men go off to battle to fight in a war. The possibilities of taking control of that image and using for our own ends are endless.      Mercury  was always seen as a male image, the god of commerce. Teaching, Writing , Intellect, communications., and sales. We have been brained washed for years into believing that this is a male aspect. Mercury the god with the winged feet and all that. In fact in ancient cultures this was attributed to more of a female energy. Athena covers most of the same bases as Mercury as far as astrological meaning goes and there are many examples like the Hindu goddess Saresvati who is the goddess of writing, poetry, intellectual pursuit, of trade. In Japan we have the goddess Benten who also is the goddess of writing, poetry and art. In fact why the planet Mercury would be consider only male is short sighted. In many cultures around the world it is either the women who handle the trade who barter and make the necessary connections to keep things moving.   It is women who traditionally have been the counters, the storers, who keep the myths, legends alive.     The Moon has always been seen as feminine, the mother, the dreamer, the nurturer, and emotions. Like our emotion the ebbs and flows  has so much to do with how we feel. How others feel about us. There is nothing wrong with  connecting this with our feminine energy. It should be noted also that it is not strictly feminine to give equally due to the other side there are also many moon gods Konshu the Egyptian god and Shin the Summeran god. These aspects of the connection with women coming between the moon cycles the unconscious that men should embraced as their own dreams, and they  are starting to more and more, but Women need to help them with this Especially if we are giving Astrology readings!
    The last astrological “planet“ is the Sun, the Sun is the center of the chart in many ways. When someone asks you what sign you are this is what they mean. Your sun sign donates your personality and how you act, the Sun is the self that helps you with who you are. In ancient cultures the sun again was often female and not male as we have been programmed. Why is it that we see the image of the Sun with a male face? Sun gods, Apollo and all of that  bunch, are always celebrated Yet The Sun Goddess is not uncommon in the world. Hathor was the Egyptian sun goddess and Amaterasu still is worshipped in Japan where today the royal family still says they are a direct descendents from her.
    In conclusion we can see that the planets and the attributions that are included are originally Goddesses. It is important to challenge the way we have been taught about the myths and legend of astrology, to look at it in a different light. It is a same that we have let patriarchal cultures slowly but surely take over and change the archetype of the planets. It is time that we look at this and thinking about am I unconscious thinking about or carrying around with me a lot of male baggage that does not need to go along with it. Remember that words have power and labels have even more. They carry with them thousands of years and history not to mention the power and energy they carry subconsciously. This is important when having your charts done or using astrology in any way. Think about the feminine aspects of the so called  “male“ planets. You then will have a much more balanced and deeper understandingof planets and of yourself.