August 24, 2017
Archetype: The Priestess
Color: Dark Rose
Symbols: Hearth, Datura, Sacred Flame
Gemstones: Fire Opal, Black Sapphire, Snowflake Obsidian
Signs: Virgo, Scorpio
The brightest asteroid in the sky is Vesta. She is representative of the sacred flame- from a tiny spark to the fiery core of the Earth. Vesta (Hestia, in Greek mythology) is associated with the hearth, a symbol for warmth and the center of the home. It also means “focus.” Vesta understands that it takes devotion to sustain passion and life-giving energy. With humility, she cares for the internal fire always, creating sanctuaries of hospitality and protection for whom she encounters.
Vesta is commonly associated with the Vestal Virgins of ancient Rome, the priestesses who tended to the ever-glowing fire beneath the city. The punishments for breaking their chastity vows or allowing the fire to go out were severe. It is important to note that the essence of the word virgin has been distorted to mean celibate, or untouched. “Virgin” originally meant unmarried, and not legally bound. Thus, virgin was an expression of someone who was “self-possessed”, not belonging to anyone but themselves. According to Âsteroid Goddesses by Demetra George, prior to becoming Vestal Virgins under Rome’s authority, moon priestesses associated with virginity were sexually independent. Their desire was primarily to transmit the energy of the Goddess.
Vesta's symbol, the sacred flame, symbolizes the secret powers of transformation. When one commits and devotes to their goals, reclaims autonomy, and engages with spirituality, the Vesta archetype can thrive. Vesta rules over areas of life including: social service, sex work, modern priestesses, and fire/candle rituals.
In Astrology, Vesta is associated with Virgo and Scorpio, two of the most complex signs in the zodiac.
In the Virgo archetype, Vesta focuses on her work. Virgo ethics include dedication, discipline, perfectionism, and service. Purifying and cleansing rituals, such as bathing in natural springs, were utilized by Vesta’s moon priestesses. Vesta in Virgo needs the opportunity to fulfill their sacred and authentic calling. Whether it be due to societal pressures, discrimination, and/or sacrifices for family and relationships, there are many barriers to achieving a self-directed path. Even so, Vesta types will always maintain that spark of life and desire to pursue their passion.
Scorpios are connected to the serpent, a symbol of psychic and regenerative power. The passionate qualities of the Scorpio Vesta are best expressed when uncovering the secrets that intimacy reveals. It is the power of having ownership over one’s own desire. Scorpio’s energy is also linked to imagery of the phoenix rising from the ashes. Vesta’s connection with the element of fire is related to the alchemical process of calcination, the act of reducing a substance to ashes. Saturn, Vesta’s father in mythology, rules over the calcination process. This process ignites introspection and burns away what stands in the way of becoming a more authentic soul.
Author: Leah Samuels is an astrologer, artist & intuitive.
Reference: The Asteroid Goddesses by Demetra George
Image 1: h_desneiges found on on Flickr