Every Soul a Celestial Venus

Wednesday, May 25, 2022 marks the 219th anniversary of the birth of the American essayist, poet, and philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson in 1803, and given that the Moon is waning through the dawn and approaching Venus as morning star at the same time, it’s fitting to consider Emerson’s essay on “Love.”

Emerson wrote his collection of essays as lectures first, and then revised them for print in the 1830s and ‘40s, so before Neptune was discovered, before Everest was named the tallest peak in the world. In the copy of the Emerson text I inherited from my grandmother, there are 12 Essays, ranging in topics from Heroism to Art. Love is the second essay, and it begins: “Every soul is a celestial Venus to every other soul.”

He continues, “The heart has its sabbaths and jubilees in which the world appears as hymeneal feast, and all natural sounds and the circle of the seasons are erotic odes and dances. Love is omnipresent in nature as motive and reward. Love is our highest word and the synonym of God.

Emerson further links love to the starry divine when he writes: “…the figures, the motions, the words of the beloved object are not, like other images, written in water, but as Plutarch said, ‘enameled in fire,’ and make the study of midnight.”

When we look in the sky we see that fiery brilliance of Venus makes it the brightest celestial object after Sun and Moon, and in perfect poetry, the cosmos is so aligned that from our perspective, the Moon will never outshine Venus, because it will only ever pass by the planet of love and beauty at crescent phase. Watch for the Moon all week and especially Thursday and Friday mornings, May 26 & 27 ~ pointing the way to your celestial Venus.

Hear this episode and more every Monday mornings on Interlochen Public Radio, and on my podcast, The Storyteller’s Night Sky.

See you in the morning light, where Venus is cradled by Pisces, awaiting the Moon (as shown in the image above from Sky&Telescope),