Earlier in the edition, John Wadsworth provided a beautiful article on the Dance of Venus from an astrological perspective. Here, Jane and Mandy approach it from a therapeutic level, teaching us how we can connect with the patterns of the Dance of Venus and use it in a practical way, connecting with our desires by walking the lines with intention.
Our Earth and the planet Venus Dance a pattern around the Sun in a 5:8 year ratio which makes a beautiful shape in the cosmos. It was recorded by Leonardo Di Vinci during the renaissance and has been a source of wonder and inspiration ever since.
Physically moving within and through this pattern can shift things profoundly for people, some people feeling themselves quite changed afterwards in a positive way, and it also seems to balance the land or space of the place where it is walked or danced, leaving an energetic imprint that can be felt by those sensitive to such things for some time afterwards. When we look at the pattern it make this seems hardly surprising. As John Martineau says “our closest planet draws a huge pentagram around us in eight years or thirteen Venusian years – five, eight and thirteen are the numbers most favoured by plants on Earth”. This pattern reminds us of the rose flower and if you look carefully, it forms a repeating pattern of hearts from the middle outwards, as if there is an explosion of love.
We started to explore walking the pattern on a series of workshops over 24 hours called the “Compass of Venus”. We created a large mat with the pattern laid out on it, a labour of love (involving much consternation!) and invited people to walk it with an intention in mind, for example ‘Please show me where I block love in my life’. We noticed that people really struggled to walk it, getting pulled in and pushed out by the pattern which can be quite a challenge to walk as there is a turn in the centre which can cause disorientation and dizziness. Straight after we all slept in a huge Oak barn, which felt like being on a ship, with the intention to dream. What we found was that it seemed to unlock memories and over the day we talked of our dreams, created paintings and images with the pattern and this had the effect of releasing them, later people walked the labyrinth with much more ease and grace.
This was the start of an exciting journey with Venus our Compass. Mariners used her as a guiding star in times gone by as she can show us where the sun will rise and so orientate us in the dark of night. We took the labyrinth to Halswell Gardens in Somerset where many people walked it on the grass just outside the beautiful Temple of Harmony, when we took it up the pattern was imprinted onto the land by all those feet, and the seed of an idea was planted.
In another ancient garden in Somerset at Nynehead Court we made a permanent labyrinth, although a slightly simplified design, in an opening surrounded by sweet chestnut trees and is complimented by the very square Knot garden in front of the house.
Our labyrinth has been all over the country since then, we have learned how to walk it with 5 people each getting into the centre at the same time without bumping into each other. It is an incredible experience which is deeply moving for some, experiencing the feeling of being in harmonic relationship with others and on a separate path, just like the plants and trees. We often play tango music at this point as the tango rhythm has a similar 5:8 ratio but just as often we do it in silence.
Our 24 hour workshops are carefully planned to coincide with Venus in her three phases , as morning and evening stars and when she is in retrograde, a time when we do not see her for 40 days as she has gone below our horizon. These different phases have brought surprises through for us collectively and as individuals.
Venus, the Planet of Love, Truth and Beauty, shows us each time how complicated we humans manage to make our lives, and each time we work with her through dancing, drawing or dreaming with her helps us to unravel ourselves a little more to reveal our own unique and beautiful patterns.
Jane and Mandy have more workshops in the pipeline for Spring 2019.
Find Jane and Mandy here: www.mandypullen.co.uk