This article first appeared on Mooncircles. It is reprinted here with permission of the author.

On this Libra New Moon, as the dark forces of war swirl around us, it will take all our magic to summon the opposing spirits of love, harmony, and beauty. With Venus as the ruling planet of this lunation, however, the Goddess is on our side. Especially powerful now in the sign of Scorpio, Venus is slowing down to turn retrograde October 10. This makes her presence even more keenly felt, as if she has paused in the heavens above for effect. In addition, she is squaring off with heavyweights Pluto and Jupiter.* We can imagine her in a stand-off with these two masculine energies, radiating the bewitching energy of feminine enchantment and casting a spell over the warrior energy dominating the atmosphere these days.

Can Venus take the war out of warriors? Traditionally, the mythological task assigned to Venus was that of civilizing and refining - for a society with no Venus was a culture without beauty, art, and diplomacy. Her placement in Scorpio as she begins her retrograde phase suggests that she is at her seductive strongest these days, doing her best to entice the world away from a path of violence and destruction.

Perhaps, if we join our souls to the energy of this Venus-ruled New Moon, we can help in the work of peace. Like the three dancing Graces - Joyous (Euphrosyne), Flowering (Thalia), and Brilliance (Aglaia) - who attended Aphrodite (the Greek Venus), this New Moon is a sacred day to consecrate ourselves to the Venusian principles of harmony and conciliation. In prayer and meditation on her being, we can make space within us for her diplomatic skills of mediation and dialogue. We can breathe in her being of beauty. We can embody within ourselves a more balanced way of relating.

In drawing down the energy of Venus, we are helped by a little stellar magic. Two grand trines in fire and air light up the sky on this New Moon, creating a pentagram.** The star-shaped pentagram is an ancient symbol with many layers of symbolic meaning. The alchemist Paracelsus considered it to be one of the most powerful signs. It was the favorite symbol of the followers of Pythagoras who used it as a sign of greeting; in Masonic tradition the pentagram is called the Blazing Star. Interestingly, the pentagram was also linked to the Greek goddess of health, Hygeia, and the Greek letters of her name were affixed to each of its five points. The pentagram is a symbol of health because in its essence, it is a symbol of the balance and synthesis of opposing forces.

Indeed, it could be said that the world is ill and out of balance because the feminine principle is weak. So this Libra New Moon, take time to meditate on the lovely Venus. Do not be deceived by her grace and gentleness - she is a force equal to the Martian energies of aggression. With Mercury stationing direct today, the winged herald stands ready to spread her message. To assist the heavens in its work on earth this month, imagine that the pentagram in the sky is a star emblazoned in your heart: a star that is a balance of masculine and feminine energies. Use it to draw down the force of harmony, the power of love, and the will of beauty. And as the Moon waxes toward fullness, practice spells of peacemaking amid the raucous cries for war.

*Venus at 15.15 Scorpio is squaring Jupiter at 13 Leo and Pluto at 15.21 Sagittarius
**Jupiter in Leo is part of a grand triangle in fire with Pluto in Sagittarius and Ceres in Aries. Neptune in Aquarius, North Node in Gemini and Sun and Moon in Libra create a grand air triangle.

(Look for the Aries Full Moon October 21, 2002.)

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