Venus in Aquarius in astro-tarot terms is the Empress in the sign of the Star. I mean that just sounds glamorous. But to be very clear, it’s a weird glamor. Aquarius is a Saturn-ruled sign, the exact opposite of the Sun-ruled Leo. So it’s not the kind of celebrity who looks normal in direct sunlight; they have a weird lunar glow instead. Maybe one unusual accessory like a giant ring.
As far as air signs go, Venus is happiest in Libra, the sign of Justice. Balance is beautiful. Libra is one of two signs said to be ruled by Venus, the other being Taurus. In Taurus, Venus is able to fully indulge their sensual side; in Libra, their focus shifts to the intellectual, seeking the beauty of reason.
Aquarius takes this intellectual theme even further, into the realm of ideals. Aquarius is a fixed sign like Taurus; Venus can be very comfortable in a fixed sign, and in fact can experience deep displeasure on being prompted to move positions. Venus in Aquarius sees the beauty of ideals, of theories, philosophies, and proofs. They love to figure things out, sometimes even when there’s nothing to figure out. Truly, they love knowledge, and gravitate towards cerebral types.
The Five of swords is sometimes associated with Venus in Aquarius. The Five is the first card in the fixed sequence of this suit, the rather rough awakening following our meditation with the Four. Here, we have too many ideals in play, and no one wins. It’s rather like the Five of wands in this way, but the competition isn’t fun — in fact, it looks devastating. The figures portrayed in Rider-Waite have all gone to bat for their ideals, their principles, and some of them became absolutely wrecked by it. The energy going into this situation isn’t just Aquarian, but Venusian — feeling pulled towards the beautiful perfect vision that everyone else’s ideals are somehow in direct conflict with. The only way to win this situation is to make other people feel absolutely shitty and distrust their own ideas, and it’s not even a long-term victory; the next card in the sequence is the Six of swords, a deep mental break between past and future, a one-way trip, a rescue mission that pulls people out from damaging or dangerous circumstances. Compare this to the Six of wands, where the victor is being celebrated.
Here’s the flip side of that rather depressing scenario, though: yes, Venus in Aquarius can mean some ugly hyper-intellectual conflicts, but it can also possess a tremendous capacity to keep hope alive in hard times. Aquarius is Saturn’s sign, the taskmaster who wants a better world. Saturn in astro-tarot is the World, in fact. Aquarius may be the Star, but their goals almost always have solid grounding in making a world that’s better in some measurable way. They just want to help!
As a transitory influence, Venus in Aquarius can be a great time to find elegant solutions to problems and to uncover logical inconsistencies. It’s a good time for accounting and to literally make things add up. It’s a good time for independent work that nonetheless connects to many bigger interconnected themes or issues, ideal for research, reading, generally encountering others’ ideas in a somewhat abstracted form (like in a book). Venus is the Empress, who wants to make things grow; what ideas can you nurture during this time?