On March 6, the NASA spacecraft will reach the dwarf planet Ceres which is the largest object in the asteroid belt that lies between Mars and Jupiter. Ceres is approximately 3 billion miles from Earth and when first discovered was designed a planet and then de-moted to an asteroid. However, Ceres like her son-in-law Pluto, has since been re-elevated back to planetary status once more. What this means is that Ceres will now be given serious consideration by astrologers in our charts. The fact that she is now in the news means that we will see her energy being integrated into the collective now.
Ceres was also known as Demeter – the goddess of the harvest. If you remember her daughter Persephone was abducted by Hades (Pluto) and taken to the underworld. Ceres searched for her daughter and when she failed to find her, she became so depressed so stopped caring for the crops and a famine ensued. At which point, Zeus stepped in and ordered Pluto to send Persephone back to her mother for part of the year – hence Ceres association with the growing and sowing months and harvesting as well as grief and loss. Interestingly enough, both Ceres and her daughter were the objects of violent and unwanted male attention. Once Ceres had to transform herself into a mare to out-run Neptune who was intent upon raping her. So, one of the themes we may see emerging is increased focus on violence against women. For all of us, our relationship to our mothers, to being mothered (or in some cases ‘smothered’) will surface as will our relationship to the mother we all share – mother Earth. What are we ‘harvesting’ by our actions? Whether we are children or adults – we all need to be nurtured and one of the themes Ceres will bring up is the need to nurture ourselves, especially if this was lacking in our childhood.
Ceres is likely to become more and more important as time goes by. There is already talk in the astro community that eventually she will be given co-rulership of a sign. Taurus has been put forward as a likely candidate but many are leaning towards Virgo as well just as there is now a movement to make Eris the co-ruler of Libra (for more on this read my article on the Venus/Eris conjunction here on AK and you’ll see why this makes sense!). Ceres appears to govern loss and mourning due to the fact she had to spend six months of the year parted from her daughter, but just like new growth after the winter, we all emerge from a period of loss ready to begin life anew. We can also say that in her own way, Ceres rules transformation just like Pluto – in fact, she may well be stronger than Pluto as we can say she went up against Pluto and got her own way! In many ways, Ceres represents the power of mother love, and the divine nurturing feminine.
On March 6, the day the very appropriately named Dawn spacecraft reaches Ceres, she will be at 21 degrees in the sign of Capricorn (well away from son-in-law Pluto who is also in there!). Capricorn represents the establishment – especially the patriarchy. We may now see the matriarchy emerge with new potential – and with new power.