When the Sun finally moves into his transit of Libra, we have reached the midpoint of the astrological year. This is the time of the Autumnal Equinox. Light is once again balanced with shadow and we are now well and fully into the waning part of the sun’s cycle which began at Summer Solstice, and moving into winter’s silence from this point on.
And that’s a great word when considering Libra. Balance. In Libra, we encounter the relentless, indefatigable pursuit of that elusive state called balance. Equilibrium. Evenness. And, make no mistake, it is a PURSUIT. Libra’s polarity is fiery, unstoppable Aries so just as Aries rushes forward without a thought to staying on her feet, Libra puts on the brakes so that she CAN stay on her feet. The reflex to maintain equilibrium is so powerful in Libra that there can often be an UNBALANCING result from reflexive actions. And therein lies the mystery. Because of this powerful urge to stay EVEN, Libra can find herself completely and utterly UNEVEN. And so the cycle begins again; off she goes to PURSUE BALANCE.
Libra is an interesting energy. Associated with the planet, Venus, the focus is on the external dynamics of Venusian impulse; getting along, creating harmony, establishing healing communications, listening carefully to ‘the other’. This is the energy of cooperation that eventually builds community. Naturally occupying the 7th house of the horoscope, Libra wants equity in relationship, order within union, a fair and balanced give & take. It looks across at independent, self-assertive Aries, it’s partner sign, & cautiously recommends consultation before action. It instinctively understands that its role is to provide a counterpoint, to slow things down, to mediate if necessary.
This is a cardinal air sign. There is implied action here and mental clarity that is often hidden behind the smiling face of conciliation. Libra’s opposite sign is the fire sign of Aries, also cardinal energy, and just as Aries seeks to establish its sovereignty and individualism, Libra is avid in its search for dialogue and partnership. However, do not be fooled into thinking that Libra will always concede to someone else’s desires. This is not at all the case. Libra’s ability is best understood when we understand the contradictory image of the iron fist in the velvet glove. Libra knows how to forward its cause while appearing to consider everyone else’s needs and desires. So, though the picture may appear to be one of dialogue and compromise, the back story is all about absolute devotion to the pre-determined resolution that Libra has arrived at all on its own! Tricky little Libra…
Libra has the ability to review and assess in advance, plot out a strategy and then maneuver through the situation, all the while adjusting, finessing and shifting but never, never, never, getting off track. When Libra responds with non-commitment to a query or suggestion, it is merely because it is looking for the temperature of the situation before making the next move. In most cases, Libra knows exactly what it wants even while appearing to be indecisive.
One of the great skills that this energy can have is the ability to create comfort. This is why Libra type people can be successful as negotiators. They have the mental clarity to keep on track, the emotional equilibrium to maintain balance, and the simple sweetness to make everyone feel safe, not threatened, a necessary quality when it comes to finding common ground. This is somewhat dependent on where the ruler of the Libra Sun, Moon, or Ascendant is located but more on that later.
The symbol associated with Libra is the Scales, the only non-living representation of a Zodiac energy. Sometimes, the Goddess of Justice is included in the symbol, holding those scales and weighing out whatever matter is at hand but for the most part, when we think of Libra, we think of those balancing plates, swinging back and forth like a teeter-totter. Remember, Libra is in PURSUIT of balance, not necessarily in a place of balance. Thus, we see Libra’s determination to appear calm, even, peaceful. That which we focus upon is usually the very thing that is in short supply within ourselves!
The shadow side of Libran energy is the tendency to manipulate and manage others. The reason for the manipulation is usually related back to Libra’s need to create congeniality in its environment. Because of the mental clarity that can be associated with this energy, the Libra psyche is a great assessor of situations, able to nail down just exactly what is necessary in order to find solutions and develop compatibility and union. Any manipulative behavior, then, is derived from this insight and the sure belief that the end—peace and coherence– must justify the means—seducing others into following Libra’s intention—emphasis on the seduction, by the way! One thing is certain, Libra makes it easy! This energy is so graceful, so accommodating that it is often not evident when coercion is being used. Libra makes us all want to do it! No aggression, no brow-beating, just simple sweetness and lots and lots of cupcakes to tempt us into it!
Libra can appear to be indecisive but again, we need to look a bit more closely at this. Usually, Libra knows exactly what IT wants but is reluctant to commit in case this commitment creates conflict. So, in fact, it is not indecisive so much as it is desirous of maintaining peace within the context of the relationship. Look a little closer and you’ll see that often as not, Libra will manage to find a way to do exactly what it has wanted to do all along and everyone else goes along willingly. Ever heard the term, Passive-Aggressive? Calm down, Libra, we all love you!
A great example of a famous (and, dare I say it, successful!) individual with a ton of Libra energy is Bill Clinton—Rising sign supported by both Venus & Mars!!! After all that Mr. Clinton has been accused of, alleged to have done and known to have been involved in, we just can’t help but love him. He makes it hard not to. To this day, his partner is still married to him. How many of us could have gone through such a thorough and public humiliation and then chosen to stay the course? I will let you all think about that! He was also one of the greatest diplomats ever and to this day is called on for his negotiating skill. It was under Clinton’s management that peace talks between Egypt and Israel took place culminating in that famous concord announced on the White House lawn! Clinton’s indubitable Libra ability to bring together diverse and apparently discordant opponents as partners in the process, was at work there.
Wherever you find Libra in your own birth chart, the issue of relating to partnership, inner balance, values, and how to attune to them into your life will somehow be brought into play. The Libra part of your psyche is concerned with finding the right words to create dialogue. How do you enter into relationship? What sorts of strategies do you use when trying to establish common ground? Where is your own inner balance point and what forces are at play within your own psyche in this regard?
For all of you Aries people, this is your half birthday, a good time to review how your own birthday year has gone so far. Accomplishments? Realized goals? Non–realized goals? And what are you going to do about it? Take some time to sit and think about how you would like the next 6 months to look.
So, how is the basic Libra energy modified by where her ‘ruling’ planet is located?
If you have Sun in Libra
Ruled by Venus in Aries:
Shadow? Rash in action & harsh in judgment.
Ruled by Venus in Taurus:
Shadow? Too complacent & a little self-indulgent.
Ruled by Venus in Gemini:
Shadow? Don’t trivialize others’ concerns; some things do matter.
Ruled by Venus in Cancer:
Shadow? Over control & emotional game playing.
Ruled by Venus in Leo:
Shadow? Emotionally demanding & sometimes loud.
Ruled by Venus in Virgo:
Shadow? Critical of others’ failures & uncompromising about strategies.
Ruled by Venus in Libra:
Shadow? Unable to be upfront because you definitely have an agenda.
Ruled by Venus in Scorpio:
Shadow? Quite willing to do whatever it takes to achieve your desired ends. Remember Machiavelli?
Ruled by Venus in Sagittarius:
Shadow? Hasty judgments & less considerate than you could be.
Ruled by Venus in Capricorn:
Shadow? Way too rigid & unwilling to give in.
Ruled by Venus in Aquarius:
Shadow? Disconnected from the emotional element in any given situation, you might make an error in judgment because of not factoring in the human element.
Ruled by Venus in Pisces:
Shadow? Watch your boundaries. If you are not careful there won’t be anything left of you!
Finally, a little nod to that beautiful planet, Venus, the ruler of that lovely sign, Libra: When we gaze up into the night sky, we can often see Venus shining brightly in the inky sky. There is comfort and a sense of connection to be derived from this simple experience. No wonder that the ancients attributed such positive characteristics to this planet. She brings us comfort. She gives us hope and she makes us gasp in awe and wonder. Almost close enough to touch and yet just beyond our reach. Ah! The magical, mysterious Venus!
The Venus Affirmation
I align my inner desire
with the path of highest good,
creating peace and grace
everywhere I go
and with everyone I meet.
Goddess, smile down on me
And let me rest
In your loving arms
I am the dreamer
And this is the dream
You are my keeper
And I am the kept
Keep me safe
in the soft love