The Sun’s time in the third and final decan of Scorpio conjures the rustle of crow wings, and a cascade of visions. A woman places a rose gently on top of a river-side grave, and then lays down next to it, in yoga’s corpse pose. She drifts off to sleep as the Sun slips below the western horizon. In dreams, succubi and incubi swarm her, taunting and tempting with visions of past joys and desires never realized. After a night of strange dreams, she awakes to find that a tree has grown during the night, and from that tree dangles a single ripe apple.
As in the other decans of Scorpio, the topic of this face is desire. In the first face, the secrets of hunger were revealed. In the second, moments of longed-for union occur. The third is the place where old desires are laid to rest and rise again, restored.
The formula of this face is the renewal of desire. It entails the separation of the spirit of desire from specific people and situations. By letting go of past satisfactions, we make ourselves empty enough to invite new ones.
Here we see how abstention serves to restore our capacity for joy and satiety. It is the strategic asceticism of the sensualist, whose purpose is not a life of holy purity, but to empty the stomach thoroughly, so as to fully appreciate the next meal. Those who throw themselves into love, lust,
food, sex, drug and drink without pause will quickly find their ability to take pleasure gray and faded.
Yet where there is desire-to-embrace, there is also desire-to-avoid. The lust for old joys and the aversion to old pains both serve to remove our ability to experience what the present has to offer. It is not only longings which must be flushed, but also resentments and hurts. Recognizing and then letting go of the names, faces and places disentangles them from our desire-nature, allowing us to see our capacity for joy, love and pain as our own potency, rather than one possessed by some external agency. For a kingdom of pleasures abides within us, and the luscious apple is always from our own garden, whether we recognize it or not.
Venus Conjunct Jupiter: Midnight Buffet
The Sun’s passage through Scorpio III this year offers an unusual number of pleasures, thanks to the conjunction of Venus and Jupiter in early Scorpio, which is exact on the 12th, but is reactivated several times throughout the decan. The two benefics lay out a buffet of indulgences, tempting us to eat and drink ourselves silly.
We would be foolish not to partake of what the planets have to offer, but we’d also be stupid to over-eat simply because there is food on the table. Strategic restraint and indulgence, the libertine’s wisdom, is the optimal pathway through this voluptuous garden.
New Moon in Scorpio: Catharsis and Dissolution
The Sun and Moon conjoin in the third decan of Scorpio on the 17th. Like all New Moons, it signals a dark, moonless night, a black sea of space in which we might lay to rest the last month’s labors and conceive of the next cycle.
While the Venus-Jupiter conjunction offers fullness, the Dark Moon in the third decan of Scorpio offers a regenerative emptiness, a great river into which we might release the dreams and desires which no longer serve us. This New Moon is a place of catharsis and dissolution, if you let it be. Pour out those lusts which have soured, and the fantasies which have become frustrations.
Mars in Libra perfects a square to Pluto in Capricorn right around the New Moon, stirring up feelings of frustration and powerlessness. It is a moody and suspicious influence, but one which
is entirely in line with the opportunity to purge that which the New Moon offers. Mars’ square with Pluto brings psychic poisons to the surface, making them all the easier to recognize and release.