What contradictory principles clash - suppressing and stimulating creativity simultaneously - in the Vesta-Sun relationships (as well as in Vesta-Mars and Vesta-Jupiter connections)! The analytical, critical, growth-inhibiting and procrastinating Earth element conflicts with the Fire element, with its impetuous and uncontrollable urge for self-realisation. The Fire element's tendency towards centering, expansion and enlargement is slowed down and channelled into an ever finer and smaller filter by the Earth element's network of inhibition, selfquestioning and self-doubt. Vesta, this dwarf-like rock, a louse in the hair, a virus in the system, takes on the giant, the "centre of the world", the almighty sun. A cosmic grotesque with an uncertain outcome. Wise is s/he who promotes a harmonious working together of these elements; tragic-comic is s/he who forcibly tries to overpower Vesta's virtuous, conscientious objectivity with his Sun-theme, his masculinity, his desire for individuality.
This duel is reflected, for example, in the life and work of the French poet Henri de Montherlant (Sun -0- Vesta in Taurus), who was not only literally a bullfighter, but practised all forms of tough, masculine sport (cf. the bullfighting theme in Picasso's work). His entire output consists of a glorification of masculinity, an exaggerated individualism, sexuality and chauvinism, a degradation of femininity (Vesta) and a transformation of Vesta's neutralising tendency into a male-heroic and extreme ethical ideal. His suicide can he seen as an abdication in the face of this hopeless inner battle.
One also finds in Picasso (Sun - 180- Vesta) echoes of over-exaggerated masculinity (fleeing Vesta), or in show business sex-symbols like Tom Jones (Sun-0-Vesta in Gemini), Ramon Navarro (Sun-0-Vesta in Aquarius), H.Bogart (Sun-0-Vesta in Aquarius), Roger Vadim (Sun-0-Vesta in Aquarius) or Gregory Peck (Sun-180-Vesta/Libra-Aries).
Problematical bi- or homosexual tendencies can also be triggered by Vesta casting doubt on the male image (Jim Morrison, Ramon Navarro).
Picasso and Stravinsky
Solutions to the Vesta-Sun theme are relatively rarely found by artistic means, because the process of artistic individuation (Sun) and "vestalic" depersonalisation oppose each other. Nevertheless we find such brave attempts like those made by Pablo Picasso and Igor Stravinsky (Sun -0- Vesta in Gemini) are notable, in that both artists (who were also friends) developed towards abstraction, without either of them finding their own continuous style.They worked through a large number of divergent styles with great virtuosity, but without identifying themselves with any one in particular. So their oeuvre falls into disjointed phases, trends, and individual personalities through which we can see the Vesta principle of fragmentation at work.
Picasso's famous statement: "I don't search, I find" indicates that he had a feeling for Zeitgeist which gave him a role in all modern movements, be they Neo-Classicism, Symbolism, Art Nouveau, Surrealism, Fauvism, or abstract art.
But his only originality (Sun) came to the fore in Cubism, which he created together with George Braque (Vesta -0- Mercury) around 1908. However, in contrast to Braque, who remained true to his style and refined it, Picasso soon turned to other styles. In his creative neurosis, it was no trouble for him to paint three pictures in one day in completely different ways and thereby take on his different personalities. "The only thing Picasso wasn't able to do: a "Picasso" which originates from Picasso" (Maurice de Vlaminck).
Insofar as he understood himself as an object of the "science of man", he regarded his complete work as a kind of precise autobiography, in which all Vesta-Sun people are united.
Thus he dated his work with exact times to give later Picasso researchers material to investigate the workings of creativity in time and space. (An interesting project for future astrologers!)
Stravinsky, a similar stylistic jack-of-all-trades, handled his Vesta-Sun relationship much better and more positively, by accepting it fully: "A method ofcomposing that doesn't define its own limits is pure fantasy: it loses itself in the arbitrariness of mood and in the cult of chaos." He was always able to skillfully balance escalation and euphoric self-representation with general structural principles. "For the clear construction of a work -for its crystallisation- it is vital that all dionysiac elements, which stimulate the creator's imagination and make the nourishing sap rise -in the moment before they make us fiverish- must be tamed and disciplined. This is Apollo's command." There is no better defmition of the to-and-fro relationship of Vesta and Sun (Apollo). The works of Stravinsky are strongly recommended to the musically minded reader. They are ideal for creating a sound-image of this constellation.
Vesta and sexual libido
The Sun (together with Mars and Jupiter) symbolises not only the yearning for individuality, freedom, spiritual potency, expansion, extroversion or creativity, but also the male side of the Kundalini.
The Air element (Venus, Mercury, Uranus) can be understood as a mediating and quasi-neutralising energy. Similarly, the Earth element, with Saturn, the Earth and Vesta can be understood as a space/time channelling component. The male and female Kundalini energetically burn one another up in an uncontrollable flood of libido and wild chaotic drama, which can dissolve into the enlightenment of nothingness - the karma or manifestation-free dimension of so-called Nirvana.
From this over-simplified perspective, Vesta (together with Saturn and the Earth) can be understood as libido-inhibiting / enlightenment-delaying, or karma-blocking, but also in a positive sense as being a loving protector of the libido. If one reflects on the suffering and karmatic entanglements that can result from a mindless and mechanical sex-life (especially when one is aware of the true esoteric potential of tantric reality), one realises that the apparently sexually hostile Vesta really plays a kind of priest(ess)'s role.
She gives the go-ahead to a free flow of libido fusion only when the tantric union - together in mystic enchantment - is experienced in completely ego-transcendant ecstasy, and is consciously understood.
Because we in Western culture have virtually no tantric knowledge, and the moral fundamentals of the Judaic/Christian/Islamic religions are losing their influence and have become empty, sexuality has become the servant of lust, which in turn can be mistaken for "freedom". This is certainly an important and positive process. However, somehow this "freedom" seems empty, and more and more people, already bored, are turning to drugs for stronger experiences.
Sexuality seems to lose its key role and we already have just as many sexual as people in the Middle Ages (e.g. there is a strong increase in impotence problems). Despite the new freedom and the population concentration in large cities, man today is more isolated and lonely than ever before. He is in danger of losing himself in complete materialism, which leaves us unfulfilled and cold. We experience the negative feedback of an incorrectly handled libido and remain ignorant of its real function and potentiality, which can be learned from the Eastern esoteric sciences.
The exoterically handled and misunderstood Earth-element confronts us in its negative variant and leads to atrophy, empty functionalism, inner numbness and materialistic dullness. It is understandable that after thousands of years of religiously inspired sexual taboo, we have a wellfounded reluctance to take on "new" teachings which once again have a religious connection.
But sooner or later we will not be able to avoid the only solution:- developing our own contemporary variants of the tantra and its laws (the higher vestalic sciences) after a thorough study of Hindu, Buddhist and Taoist sources.
We have to learn that we live simultaneously in a physical and metaphysical reality and that both realities follow their own logic (which includes paradox). A wise handling of the inner libido is based on a deeper understanding of the metaphysical body and the chakra system. This should include astroenergy, mantric aspects, sexual magic, breathing techniques (yoga) and listening to what the heart tells us. As long as we close ourselves off from these fundamental resources and cannot fully consciously integrate them, there will never he a sexuality that leads to real freedom. No true orgasm, never complete union, no real happiness and ecstasy, no harmony with the inner Vesta and the Earth-element as one. We have to free ourselves radically from the physical fascination and interpretation of the Earth-element, accept its primary esoteric dimension and learn to appreciate it! In terms of the Vesta-Sun relationship, that means that we must place our mighty Sun in the service of inner enlightenment, correct its fixations and misjudgements, assign it social and human tasks, join its wisdom and powers of differentiation with the Heart chakra and free it from the staleness of the personal ego, thereby to experience its trans-personal brightness.
Vesta and psychoanalysis
Ultimately Vesta-Sun is an advantageous constellation, insofar as Vesta, through her obstinacy, self-criticism, sense of reality and pressing conscience, gives the Sun few opportunities for selfgratification. There is no better way to look behind the mask of a dominant and usually obstructive Ego (Sun) than to pursue a personality - or psychoanalysis! And indeed - and this must be seen as strong evidence of the enormous effectiveness of Vesta - we owe the very existence of psychoanalysis in all its main schools to strongly Vesta-influenced personalities. First of all Sigmund Freud with his Tanatos theories (Vesta -0- Pluto in Taurus, 2°orb and Vesta -180- Ascendant, 5°orb), C.G.Jung with his metaphysically based theory of archetypes (Vesta -0- Sun, 3°orb), Alfed Adler with his inferiority complex (Vesta -0- Sun in Aquarius, 4°orb and Vesta -180- MC, 4°orb), Wilhelm Reich with his orgiastic impotence and "lust anxiety" (Vesta -0- Mars, 2°orb) as well as Fritz Perl with Individual psychology and Gestalt therapy (Vesta -0- Sun in Cancer, 2°orb): each one of them a student of sexual theorist Sigmund Freud.
Their common motivation was an increased curiosity to find answers to the distress of the sexual problems created by Vesta. In other words, the Vesta emphasis in their horoscopes marks them as genuine seekers. This distinguishes them from the money-orientated Hollywood analysts. Amongst the more recent generations of analysts, Timothy Leary with his psychedelic sexual therapy (Vesta - 180 - Pluto, 1°orb and Vesta - 0 - Mars, 6°orb) along with Richard Alpert and his religious-meditative therapies (Vesta - 180 - Pluto, 6°orb and Vesta - 180 - Jupiter, 1°orb) stand out. Both were sympathetic with Freud's teachings before their radical move into the esoteric dimension.
In addition, one could also include here the psychiatrist and proponent of "anti-psychiatry", Ronald D.Laing (Vesta -0- Saturn, 4°orb).
Vesta and C.G.Jung
Excluding the Vesta-Pluto relationship, which is very difficult to master (Freud, Leary, Alpert), one must acknowledge the pioneering ideas of C.G.Jung. This includes his theory of Types (extroversion / introversion), and the process of Individuation (the "personal self"/ the "social self"),the Personal and Collective Unconscious including the esoteric realms of Vesta (alchemy, astrology and the eastern sciences), of Buddhist depth-psychology (Tibetan Book of the Dead, mandala-archetypes, "Secret of the Golden Flower"), of comparative psychology, of yoga, shamanism - as well as modern abstract thinking (reconciliation of polarity, synchronicity phenomena).
This was certainly a great achievement for an academic of his time. He created mental bridges which are an inspiration to this day.
Nevertheless his sceptical role as a scientist and his academic pride prevented him from crossing one of those bridges by himself. Even though an engaged champion of Eastern and Western wisdom, he became neither alchemist, astrologer, nor even practising Tantrician, Buddhist or Taoist. He always remained the son of a Swiss parson, who mistrusted his father's religion.
Setting out from his view ofthe world with his crisis of conscience, and equipped with a good intuitive gift (Venus -0- Mercury in Cancer), he began to explore the roots of his anima without being able to come to terms with it. In a kind of self-justification, he claimed he considered it dangerous, if not impossible, for westerners.
Here, we hit upon a fundamental problem of Vesta-orientated people (when they are not alleviated by a strong Water element): an impersonal distancing of oneself from one's achieved insights. On this occasion, it becomes apparent that Vesta represents only one half of the Virgo-Pisces axis. The other part which has come into effect is Neptune. With stoic scepticism, Vesta opposes Neptune's invitation to take a fearless leap into water to dissolve into the "unio mystica".
Instead Vesta demands ever new and more refined assurances and verifications, which could easily take a lifetime. In particular, those of analysts, therapists, psychologists, teachers, scientists, philosophers, astrologers or occultists, whose professional reputation is, from the outset, more defined by theory than practice. This is socially acceptable, finds sympathy, and can be traced back to Vesta's bourgeois (Earth-element) roots. There are only small minorities that don't shy away from the "genuine" and directly seek and consult the real shamans, the Buddhist monk -equally perfected in theory and practice-, the mystically and esoterically developed astrologers, etc. This group of genuine people is in fact banned as social outsiders (one need only think here, for example, of the 12th house, which is also described as "prison"), although they are only too pleased to put their "realisation" (Knowlodge-Being) at everyone's disposal.
When the important Indian scholar Heinrich Zimnaer asked C.G.Jung, who had travelled in India, to write a preface to his book on the holy Shri Ramana Maharishi, Jung wrote: "Apparently, I should have visited Shri Ramana. But I'm afraid that if I travelled to India to make amends, l would react the same way: despite the uniqueness and inimitability of this undoubtedly important person, I couldn't make the effort to meet him in person." Now that should not be understood as a reproach against Vesta-influenced analysts. In the larger context of the teachings of reincarnation, the cautious vestalic approach to certain fields of knowledge can be considered as positive and necessary for spiritual developments in later existences. In cosmic dimensions, an earthly existence lasts just a tiny moment whose meaning, depth and paradoxical logic can only be understood from Uranian distance. Thus follows the theoretical question: where is Carl Gustav Jung living today? In any case, his Vesta-Sun homework was a model of excellence in which he invested all his spiritual capacity. Yet don't I hear the soft ring of church bells? - or was it the distant song of Christian Gnostics?
The asocial dimension of Vesta
The analyst and therapist Fritz Perls, who was influenced by Wilhelm Reich, developed (through his Vesta-Sun conjunction) a kind of humanistic therapy (Gestalt), an unorthodox combination of many therapies such as work with dreams, work with the body, psychodrama, group therapy, etc. in order to recreate the lost wholeness of the neurotic ("Selbstunterbrecher").
Patients with buried human impulses (like helpfulness, goodwill) Perls described as awkward and saw in them a suppression mechanism at work. Not particularly original if one compares this with the wide-ranging multi-layered thinking of C.G.Jung. Here, however, another facet of Vesta can be seen, which can result in human shyness (inferiority complexes), but also an anxiety-ridden, depersonalised coldness. In a desire for over-objectivity and authority, Vesta can hide herself behind a wall of unfeeling, tactlessness and brittleness, which kills off all human warmth (similar to an unresloved Saturn block).
With donkey-like stubborness, she can show herself as a stickler for principles, and "enfant tenible", or with a spinsterish narrow-mindedness. She frequently withdraws from the inner aspirations of the human and harmonising forces and aligns herself, less to the will or the wishes ofthe individual as to a somewhat asocial, isolated or even anti-human (fault-finding) factor. To break down the barriers of such an obdurate Vesta, even with all the means of therapy, is not an easy task, and requires great patience and empathy.
As far as I'm concerned, the best one can do in such a situation is to use her own weapons in rational discussion, and destroy her incorrect intellectual conclusions in a step-by-step analysis - build up a basis of trust in full honesty and openness - without giving Vesta an impression of any jovial (Jupiter-like) or wise superiority, which could only drive her further into refractory isolation. In addition, a reminder of her human and social duties, or attempting to speak on her level, can also work great wonders. Nothing is more hateful to an agitated Vesta than secretiveness (Nepune) or deliberate deceit (even when this has a Venus-like diplomatic motivation).
Vesta neuroses, that were (somewhat indiscriminately) denoted by Adler as inferiority complexes, frequently have their roots in the misunderstanding of minute logical details, missed points, misuse or abuse of honesty (in early childhood), or a premature transfer of responsibility with its consequent overburdening. In addition, strong Martian, Jupiterian and Sun-like, domineering figures, who can induce the Vesta personality to tell white lies or to comply (even when unconvinced), can lead to a malfunctioning of the Vesta theme (also speech impediments and psychosomatic escape mechanisms).