Joy, Pleasure, Happiness and Chocolate
As you tuck into your Easter egg this morning, you may want to as yourself this: what is the difference between joy and pleasure?
This week I listened to the writer Anthony Seldon talking on the radio, distinguishing between pleasure, which we might get from eating chocolate, happiness which we might get from sharing chocolate with friends, and joy which is transcendant. (He starts at around 24 minutes).
Accordingly, pleasure is a passing thing, where some of us get stuck: eating another chocolate bar, reading another trashy magazine. You might associate that with the sign Taurus, the most sensual of us all, a sign that understands the sheer delight of mud between the toes, cat’s fur beneath one’s fingers or a single malt. On the other hand, we can imagine that slothful, greedy Taurus, lolling on the sofa devouring biscuits and pornography. Is pleasure ever sated?
The other sign ruled by Venus, the planet of pleasure, is Libra, of course, the territory of today’s eclipse. Sharing chocolate with a friend would be a Libran kind of happiness, perhaps, reaching out lovingly to another person, but there’s also happiness in making the chocolate, in creating something delicious and beautiful, also rather Libran
And what about just being with the chocolate, isn’t that a kind of happiness too? Not eating the chocolate, or sharing the chocolate, but knowing that you will have the chocolate. That’s my Venus in Aquarius writing.
Where Venus sits in your chart, you can find pleasure. Each sign and house shows us a different kind of pleasure. It really is different strokes for different folks. Some people don’t like chocolate at all after all, and if your Venus has many contacts with other planets and points, you probably know more than one way to get happy.
Where Jupiter sits and connects, you find what brings you joy. But what brings a Jupiter in Leo joy — generosity — would be anathema to Jupiter in Scorpio — who might joy in keeping the secrets of the confessional. You might find also how you spread the joy: through words (Jupiter in Gemini) or cosseting (Jupiter in Cancer). Joy is a higher love, but it’s not possible for us to live in that place all the time,
What astrology teaches us is that we need joy, happiness and pleasure. If we focus just on joy, we lose touch with the here and now of living on earth. You are bound for disappointment. We need Venus and Jupiter and all the other planets. We need to allow them all a voice.
Your chart is a song sheet, ready for you to read so you can sing your song whole-heartedly as a bird.
Enjoy your Easter egg.