The Rise of Ceres and the Feminine

Hi there – Happy March!

You know that I always look at the four “girls” – the asteroids, Ceres, Pallas, Juno and Vesta. Well, now Ceres is a dwarf planet because of her size and gravitational pull. While this brings back bitter memories to me of the downgraded of Pluto from full planet to dwarf, I will put away my rage for a few minutes to praise Ceres.

Ceres is the largest object in the asteroid belt, which lies between Mars and Jupiter and appears to have some water frost activity on the surface. We won’t know much more about what is really going on until the unmanned Dawn Mission arrives there in 2015. Launched by NASA in 2007, the mission will also explore sister asteroid Vesta in 2011!

When the Greeks ruled the Western world, they prayed to Demeter, the Goddess who is the equivalent to Mother Nature. She made the trees and flowers bloom and the crops grow and when she went into the underworld to rescue her daughter, the blooming stopped and winter was born. In a deal to get her daughter released from the God of the Underworld, Pluto (boy they always picked on Pluto even then!) — she would return once a year thus bringing the winter every year. The Romans swiped the concept and renamed her Ceres.

More than two millennia later, the asteroid named after this archetypal mother energy is being elevated to planet just at the time the concept of the sacred feminine and the balancing of the male energy so dominate for so long. What a “coincidence.” The interesting part to me is that we are discovering a planet that deals with rather traditional female roles – that of nurturer and mother. That would seem to be incongruous with the rise of the power of the sacred feminine. However, think about how the power women have as creators, as those who keep life flowing, has been (and continues to be) undervalued. Indeed, it has been the fear men have for this ability they do not share, that has lead to the marginalization of the female for so long. You know the old joke that if men could give birth it would be done in the town square with cheerleaders- but because it is a female task, it has been consigned to scary dark rooms. Remember the days when a pregnant woman was not seen in public?

As the power between man and woman – yin and yang balance on a universal scale, woman must be mindful not to lose or themselves diminish that power which makes us so separate from the male. We don’t need to become men or lose what makes us uniquely female.

Vesta – The Fire Inside

The smallest but most determined asteroid goddess is Vesta. To the Greeks, she was Hestia who is actually the woman pictured in the Virgo the Virgin glyph. When the Romans took over the world, they renamed her Vesta and depicted her as the goddess of the hearth and the keeper of the sacred flame. (Remember the Vestal Virgins?) I, like a growing number of astrologers, assign Virgo rulership to Vesta. Poor Virgo doesn’t have its own ruling planet…Scorpio finally got Pluto but Virgo and Taurus are so far without rulers. However, Vesta’s dedication to a cause despite the hardship it causes her, the organized way she goes about keeping the fires burning – all sound Virgoan to me – and why else would the ancients make Virgo Virgin the picture of Hestia?

Simply, Vesta in a person’s horoscope indicates where their burning heart’s desire rests — some inner burning fire…for me it is in the 12th house. Duh — twelfth house our connection to the universe– astrologer – hello! Seen in the first house, it would be a dedication to self-goals -often to the exclusion of long-term relations with others. In the fifth house, it will give a dedication to artistic and creative goals. The eleventh house placement would lend a person to be dedicated to group humanitarian efforts — remember Jane Addams?

Vesta is the little but bright asteroid that keeps our inner passion and inner dedication burning. Someone with a strongly aspected Vesta will give up everything to achieve their goal – family, sex, society— everything! Now that doesn’t happen in too many charts but it gives you some idea of how intense she can be.

Girls will be girls. Don’t mess with them when they are set on something!