Venus and Jupiter -
Bringing to reality our dreams and fantasies of the ideal is not always easy nor even possible. Coming to terms with this natural split in the human psyche is also difficult, but in this book, Erin Sullivan goes deeply into the character, mythological origins and astrological relationship of the two planets most closely associated with ideals, creativity, romance, ethics and social relationships.
In Venus we find the inherent duality of the experience, and this lies in the goddess
Aphrodite's own duality. In Jupiter she brings the larger, global perspective into
the picture, showing how the sky-
Review by Robin Heath -
This is a wonderful book and holds together extremely well. It's origins, like the
other titles in the CPA armoury, stem from CPA seminar sessions held at Regent's
College. London. The Venus material (Part One: Venus Aphrodite -
Erin Sullivan is one of our foremost astrologers, a woman of real depth and decades
of experience as a practising astrologer. Although she is often jaunty and humorous
in her approach, she always has access to a great depth of astrological wisdom and
an often astonishing insight. She delivered a punchy and well received Charles Carter
Memorial Lecture at the 1997 AA Conference together with workshop sessions. At this
same conference one could pick up a background opinion of the view that psychological
astrology had 'peaked' and now it was time to get back to the traditional astrology
Venus and Jupiter are the largest visible objects in the sky, after the two luminaries,
and, surprisingly, they have never been paired in quite the way Erin treats their
astrology. More normally, Mars and Venus are wheeled out as the 'sexy' duad whilst
Jupiter gets a rather dull blind date with Saturn. Erin begins with the 'monomyth'
of Venus and immediately connects her readers with the magic of astrology in enabling
a student to "become privy to information that is not readily available through any
other medium". So, right on page two, we are made aware of astrology's value as a
tool to understanding human mythology, philosophy and the roots of culture. The author
takes us through a journey of exploration with Venus's history -
And so this book begins its main thrust, involving the reader in a true educational process which is also fun. Erin's humour bursts out regularly in interactions with her audience, and this movbes the book along nicely and presents the heavy clogging 'religious' quality of many astrological texts. This reviewer found the treatment enchanting at times.
Venus does have something to do with our relationships, of course, and Erin takes this directly from the dual symbols of love as both healing and destructive. Erotic madness, erotomania and the direct consequences of possession by Eros are brought right within the modern stage as Erin looks at the manifestation of 'stalking' and the manner we deal with 'possession' by 'the other' with all its risks, dangers and sublime possibilities. A section on Love and Strife takes the reader right into the primordial scission and the big polarities of Heaven and Earth, Spirit and Matter. The modern portrayal of Eros as the wimpy anorak Cupid is used to demonstrate how far our modern culture is divorced from the depth inherent in Venus as a symbol.
From page 70 to page 125, planetary aspects to Venus are covered in depth. The astrological
meat in the sandwich is generous and, once again, the audience's rapport with the
author makes for solid examples and remarkable insights. No cook-
Page 128 begins a look at Jupiter -
Now the reader is entreated to an insightful look at the Zeus/Jupiter myths. The
dionysian side of Jupiter is wheeled out via a shamanistic look at altered consciousness
and transcendence. The moral hypocrisy angle is vividly pportrayed with examples
of US presidents (surely not?), then Erin deals with the travelling and exploring
side, followed by Jupiter as saviour with the examples, Jim Jones, David Koresh and
David Icke. It would have been nice to have included the charts (or at least footnoted
The aspects of Jupiter to other planets on the natal chart completes this major work.
Again, I wouldn't change a word of Erin's account of Jupiter-
The older texts on Venus and Jupiter often treat their combination as an excessive, sickly affair. Such a judgement cannot be placed on Erin's latest feast, which has to be essential reading for any serious student of astrology. This reviewer hasn't had so much fun with an astrology book, nor gleaned so much for many a year.
© Copyright 1998 The Astrological Association of Great Britain
Review by Mary Plumb -
During her early mid-
A theme that also weaves throughout the present work is Erin's interest in the way
we think and the kinds of concerns that occupy our minds. Since the classical mind
has formed the back bone of Western thinking, her understanding of the period allows
her to capture the dichotomies and duality's inherent in Western thought. She appreciates
the necessity for "splitting" and has a question about contemporary ideas of "wholeness
and integration", which she feels is a nearly impossible-
According to the early creation myth in Hesiod's Theogony, Aphrodite was born of
the severed genitals of Ouranos and the Sea of Cyprus, midwifed by Kronos (Saturn),
after the split between Heaven (Ouranos) and Earth (Gaia). This is Aphrodite Urania.
In a later story Aphrodite is described as the divine daughter of Zeus and Dione;
she is known as Aphrodite Pandemos ("of the people"). Thus her dual archetypes -
Along with telling facets of many versions of the myths, Erin reflects on the parallels
between conflict and creativity, and between conflict and love -
In the section on Jupiter, Erin has opened an appropriately grand window into Zeus's world with a view of the strengths, paradoxes and subtleties therein. There are 60 pages on the background of mythology in the first section, including a synopsis of various ways that myths have been understood over time, leading into Mircea Eliade and Joseph Campbell's ideas as myth as rites of passage, "reawakening individuals to their own power, sense of timing, and place in the world." Freud and the myth of Oedipus; Zeus's birth and reign, his fathering of Dionysos, his guardianship of travellers and states of transition (temenos) are subjects in Erin's dialogue. She also investigates wisdom/dogma, shame/guilt, charisma and Zeus's ability to confuse one with the state of at) before beginning the section on Jupiter in aspect to the other planets. Erin's engagement with the Jupiter archetype is vivid in this workshop, and I (in the midst of a Jupiter return!) found it irresistible and wise.
Throughout the book, Erin offers Greek words and their etymology eg Chaos literally
means "a gap, a 'yawn,' implying that there is something unbounded and open..." -
I loved this book; it is wonderfully educational about questions of life, love and meaning and I highly recommend it to those curious about further insights into the nature of the benefics.
© Copyright 1998 The Mountain Astrologer
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