So here I am on a cool, rainy night, trying to figure out how to get kimchi bokkeumbap delivered to me that 1) doesn’t cost $25, and 2) comes with banchan and not just some weak wae-guk kimchi.
A fried egg that isn’t completely hard by the time the food arrives would be nice too, but likely impossible.
I settled on regular bokkeumbap, realizing that if I’m going to get what I want, I’m going to have to make it myself, which means taking a trip to the Korean market and investing a small fortune in all the things Korean cooks take for granted, all the things I used to have in my tiny Korean apartments when I lived there…ten years ago? Yes! It really was that long ago. That was during reinvention #2, and my apartments there were actually somehow smaller than the one I have now.
It was also the first few times I ever had my own apartment. Mostly my own. They were furnished and picked out for me, paid for by the hagwons I worked for.
I also remember being so hopeful that maybe I’d meet someone. I was in the middle of divorce, and really, that shouldn’t have been on my mind, but by then, I had been separated for over a year and hoping fate would bring me a nice ex-pat or a thoughtful Army officer.
It brought a few people, no one who stayed. I found many of the Army guys to be way too eager to meet a woman for my taste, though one of my friends found her soulmate in one of the guys stationed there. They’re still together and have two kids. I found a couple ex-pats, but no one for me.
But I rediscovered my fortitude and independence.
And I guess it feels like that again, and even though I know intellectually this is a bad time — it’s a pandemic, I’ve been single for only five months, there are other things I want to do with my time than worry about what a man is doing — I can’t help but wonder who is going to be there when the time is right, as in, when life brings me to that place.
The fact of the matter is that I’m getting older, and so is the pool of available men, and I don’t know how many of them are left who still want to take their time.
And it’s not like I can run off to Korea now. I have a career, and it can only really happen in America, and probably only in Illinois if I am to do it with the most integrity. I have things I want to do and those require me not being glued to someone right now, though I have to admit that I really miss having someone to talk to with whom there are no taboos and no end to the silliness or absurdity they’ll engage in.
And I miss that specifically — long texts, emails, chats of just being silly and confessing things you might not otherwise share because you just feel safe to do so.
That takes a special type of man.
Eros and Psyche in Composite is the Key
So, a friend of mine introduced me to a concept that finally helps me accept asteroids:
Eros and Pysche mean more in conjunction in a composite chart than they do in synastry.
This came up not necessarily out of the blue, but rather in one of our hours-long catch-up phone calls when talking about midpoints and relationships and other fun stuff. Midpoints is a pool I dip my toes in, but don’t often go for a swim, even though I do understand the utility.
And it would make sense that Eros and Psyche, given the story, given their functions, would give a better indication of how two people merge against the odds when in composite than in synastry.
Because the thing is supposed to be that Eros and Psyche conjunct in synastry is what creates the soul mate, pull, what indicates the soulmate connection, right? And to me, that made me seriously wonder because I have Eros and Psyche both in Aquarius in a (very) wide conjunction in the 12th house in my own chart, which would make me think damn Miriam, you’re your own soul mate. Always have been.
And that hardly seems fair.
I went back and I looked at the mid-point method composite charts with the one man I did marry, and there it was: Eros and Psyche conjunct, just one degree apart.
Does it matter that I don’t love him? Does it matter that the relationship crumbled before it was every really built? Does it matter that we had no business getting married in the first place? Not really.
We got married. We stayed together. We shouldn’t have done any of those things, but we did anyway. I should have ended things in the first month, actually. We don’t talk to each other now, and that’s fine because I don’t need to be friends with my exes. But we got married, and unlike with other relationships, we both knew we would marry each other, and I actually did marry this one. We even wanted to have children at one point until I realized this was not the right person.
And I’m not entirely off the fence about having children. I would have one, just one, on the condition that I find the perfect man and it just happens because sometimes life puts you on paths you didn’t necessarily choose, and there is a precious someone who springs forth from a precious love. I don’t ever want to have a child simply to have one. I would never even think of doing that, whether it’s by myself or with a partner specifically chosen with that in mind. And if it never happened, that’s okay, too. I can go to my grave childless if there was never the right person and not regret it because then I know no children should have come into being anyway.
But Eros and Psyche connections don’t have much to do with the other stuff pertaining to relationships, like whether to have children, like how you’ll learn to live in peace together, like how you manage the baggage you’re bringing into the relationships, like how maybe you two are actually way too young to actually be getting married, like you know, the hard stuff.
Eros and Psyche connections doesn’t necessarily mean romantic or lasting love.
Case in point: I have Eros and Psyche connections in synastry to pretty much every single client. Zero sexual attraction. I guess it doesn’t help that just about none of my clients are heterosexual men anyway, but even still, no sexual attraction.
And the thing is that I really like all of you, and it’s so much easier to work for someone you genuinely like, and so much easier to root for someone you genuinely like because you are all so genuine. There’s a lot of great things that will come forth from all of you, and I’m looking forward to it.
And it’s probably a good thing that I can’t conflate my interest in these souls with sexual interest.
But you would think there would be, given the Psyche and Eros connections between our charts. Likewise, there are Eros and Psyche contacts in synastry with my brother and sisters, and again: no sexual attraction.
So what gives?
Eros and Psyche in mythology
This isn’t actually your typical love story, even though it has all the parts. Here it is in a nutshell: Psyche was the most beautiful woman in the world, supposedly more beautiful than Aphrodite (Venus) herself. However, despite the fact that all men seemed to admire her, none would fall in love with her, none seeming to care about the woman she actually was, and she was alone. Aphrodite, jealous of the admiration Psyche received, sent her son Eros (Cupid) to pierce Psyche’s heart with one of his love arrows and make Psyche fall in love with the most disgusting, ugliest creature on Earth. However, when Eros saw Psyche, he was not only taken with her physical beauty, but taken with the beauty of her soul, and he could not obey his mother’s wishes.
Since Psyche’s parents couldn’t marry her off, her father went to the Oracle of Delphi for advice. Her father was told to take her to the top of a mountain where a terrible winged dragon would take her for his bride. His father reluctantly did as he was told, but when Psyche was alone, Zephyr, the gentle wind, picked her up and lulled her to sleep. She awake at the foot of a beautiful mansion that appeared empty. A voice whispered to her that this was her home now, and that all inside was for her. Psyche obviously thought that surely, this was her husband talking and this was her home.
But there was no one there. Still, the inside of the house was more beautiful than she had ever seen, the food more delicious than she had ever eaten, and all of the comforts and luxuries unlike anything she had every experienced, and still: she hadn’t seen her husband yet. However, as Psyche prepared for bed and laid there in the darkness, she was sure that he could come, and then he did, whispering sweetly in her ear. Though she couldn’t see him, his voice was soothing and his touch was gentle, and she wasn’t afraid.
Psyche lived in splendor by day and in ecstasy by night by a husband she knew loved her though she could not see him. However, she was left lonely during the day and asked that her sisters could visit. Her husband relented and allowed them to come. Psyche’s sisters, jealous at all Psyche had, told her that she was married to the serpent from the oracle and that’s why she couldn’t see him. They convinced Psyche to look upon her husband while he slept, so one night, she lit a candle and snuck up to him, and when she saw his face, she saw Eros, the beautiful god of love, but upon coming up to him, she woke him up, and Eros, feeling betrayed, left her at once.
Psyche cried for her husband to come back, day in, day out, but he didn’t return. Finally, not knowing what else to do, Psyche went to the temple of Aphrodite to ask for the goddess’s help in getting her son to come back. Aphrodite still didn’t care for Psyche, so she gave her three seemingly impossible tasks to complete in order to get help.
Psyche, with the help of others who felt sympathy for her, completed these seemingly impossible tasks, but Aphrodite, who was still jealous, still refused to aid Psyche in getting Eros to return. It was then that the other gods decided to intervene, and Hermes (Mercury) went to Eros to tell him what his wife was doing to get him back and how his mother was torturing his wife, and in that moment, Eros was so touched by Psyche’s dedication that he forgave her and went to her. Zeus, also touched, made Psyche immortal, and Eros and Psyche have since then remained in passionate embrace since.
As the two asteroids move about the heavens looking to meet again, in us erotic passion (Eros) looks to find deep loving devotion (Psyche), and the beauty of love (Psyche) seeks to find the all-encompassing romance (Eros) that the two lovers found in each other.
And like Psyche, we will all have our admirers but few will merit our devotion, and like Eros, we will see all sorts of lovely faces but few that will make us want to carry them up and into the mansions of our souls (Eros).
What’s love got to do with it?
So, here’s the thing: if you got married, you probably had an Eros/Psyche connection in the composite chart. If not, you probably had some sort of Eros/Psyche connection in synastry, if not necessarily between the two asteroids than between the asteroids and the planets. Conjunctions between Eros and personal planets are very powerful; they just make love, pure and simple, come easily, even if there’s no other contributing factors in synastry, like a Mars/Venus conjunction, to make a romance. The Eros person just naturally desires the personal planet person to be happy for whatever reason. Conjunctions between Psyche and personal planets are also powerful, as they make devotion come easily. The Psyche person feels devoted to the personal planet person.
You may actually find that some of your best friendships, especially from your youth, have Eros/Psyche conjunctions in composite because in a lot of ways, your closest friendships as teenagers and young adults are like practice marriages, regardless of the gender of the people involved. This is especially true for the ones you’re still friends with, the ones you return to friendship with even after long separations.
In a sense, your sibling relationships are sort of like practice marriages because you’re forced to make do with someone you live with whom you have to find a way to compromise with or else fight with forever. Most of our siblings also used to be former marriage partners if we were inclined to marry in past lives.
And no, I can’t actually tell you who you were in a past life (like that would actually help you much now), but I can give you an idea of what you’re bringing here from the past.
Now, Psyche moves way more quickly than Eros, who stays put and broods until Psyche returns to him, so it’s not even like you’ll have an Eros/Psyche conjunction with everyone who is close to your age simply as a matter of physics. However, you may find that the people whom you marry/re-marry in this life are generally closer in age to you, but that doesn’t mean age proximity makes for a conjunction in composite.
But not all marriages, right?
This is true: not all marriages. Also, not all happy marriages or even marriages that last, but rather, the kind of marriages where you see each other and you just know, even if your destiny is to sever your karma by breaking up and never getting back together, even if your destiny is to begin a new karmic cycle, or to finally get the thing you’ve both been denied in past lives.
But Eros and Psyche conjunctions make it very difficult to leave each other even if the relationship isn’t so great, so hopefully there’s some blessings in the composite chart. It also makes it very difficult for other people to break up or stop the marriage. It also makes for marriages in which the individuals may meet each other through unconventional means or meet against the odds. These couples may be fundamentally different and yet, on the inside, are very alike, even in ways they don’t care to admit, creating a vulnerability that they may not care to face.
How important is this?
This is still a minor aspect although powerful. You still want to see the usual suspects in synastry: Sun/Venus, Venus/Mars, Moon/anything connections, Nodal connections, and Saturn connections for longevity. You want to see something on the 1st/7th house axis, planets in the 5th and/or 7th house, and all the fun stuff. But even the Eros/Psyche conjunction in composite can’t make up for say, a Mars square Saturn or a Moon opposite Pluto aspect in synastry.
The thing is that you could have this conjunction in composite and everything else goes to shit, especially if there’s some strong Lilith interaction in the chart. This is the kind of couple who goes to Vegas and then discovers who the other really is as time goes on and have to determine for themselves what they’re willing to do to keep the relationship going, and if it’s worth the trouble.
10/29/2020 update: Eros and Psyche in a hate relationship?!
So, I actually got the notion to go through some other charts to see if Eros and Psyche conjunctions existed in composite charts of people with whom I had a very contentious relationship.
The psychopath, “John,” from my second job in Korea and I have Psyche and Eros not only conjunct but in a stellium with the Sun and Moon.
When I think back on it, it was one of those very odd relationships where we should have gotten along. I mean, we otherwise have a lot of synastry contacts between our charts, and even without his birth time, I can figure that we could not have been indifferent to each other. His Sun conjunct my Moon. His Moon conjunct my Venus. His Mars and South exactly conjunct my ascendant and his North Node exactly conjunct my descendant.
We have nearly the same Sun/Moon midpoint, too.
Looking back on this as an astrologer, I would have guessed that this was a close relationship. However, if I keep looking, I see this:
His Saturn retrograde conjunct my Mars/Jupiter/North Node.
And there it is. The control factor. The need to dominate and suppress, and my need to be free, fighting forever, perhaps the worst combination for a boss and an employee, and frankly, with his own Saturn/Mars issues, probably one of the worst people for anyone to have as a boss, especially someone like me.
Do I think he’s still an asshole? Well, yes. This person is like Donald Trump but with a bigger vocabulary, but I wonder if I would not have been locked into what seemed like such a karmic battle with this insane man who frankly reminded me of my father (and his lapdog girlfriend reminded me of my mother) had we not worked together, because the problems didn’t start until he got a little bit of power.
And maybe that’s it. Out of all the karmic relationships I seem to be dissolving in this lifetime, perhaps this one was an old relationship I needed to see with my eyes wide open to realize that I didn’t need it, because working at that place was so bad I left Korea for good.
But this Saturn issue with it being closely conjunct my natal Mars has long symbolized a lot of the energy that made me not want to date men around my own age when I was younger because I always seemed to attract the ones that wanted to capture me and then put me in a cage.
I wonder if there’s any way to explore this as a positive aspect, like someone supporting (Saturn) my initiatives (Mars) and being patient (Saturn in Virgo) with my quirks (Mars in Virgo)…
Which type of composite chart?
So that part I’m not so sure. Often, if the two people were born close to each other, the Davison and midpoint charts are generally pretty close, but I think they both work but for different reasons. A Davison chart is a composite chart of the relationship itself as a separate being. A composite chart is the chart of how two people mesh to become one. I don’t think one is more accurate than the other, but rather that the focus is just different in a fundamental way. Davison charts show the relationship created as its own entity, and composite charts are inter-relational. Davison charts are the relationships we make. They’re nouns. Midpoint charts are what we do as a couple. They’re verbs.
Either way, every relationship makes both.
I can’t really tell either way right now, but I’m hoping some more exposure to these types of couples helps.
An Eros and Psyche love exercise for ya:
This is a variation on a lot of soulmate meditations, manifestations, and spells, but it really kind of works with the archetypes here. One of the things I’m often asked about is when someone will find someone to love. I can tell you right now that if you’re longing for it, and you’re asking me about it, chances are that yes, there will be someone, but the right one? That’s different.
Eros found his with his eyes open, but without ever speaking to her, without ever touching her first. On the other hand, Psyche found her right one without ever seeing him first. And let us admit it: Eros was being a fucking pussy in this myth while Psyche was doing all the heavy lifting. She earned her goddamned immortality for that. So, if you want to find true love, be more like Psyche:
Imagine the traits of your heretofore unknown beloved WITHOUT picturing what they look like OR how the world sees them. Don’t worry about what they look like, what they do for a living, how tall they are, how many social media followers they have, what kind of clothes they wear, what kind of car they drive, etc., because it doesn’t matter here in the dark, because that’s where you are right now, psychologically, emotionally and spiritually about all of this: in the dark.
Imagine that you’re in the pitch dark of your bedroom laying in bed next to your beloved. You’re not having sex yet, by the way. You’re just laying there. You may have already had sex, but this exercise really doesn’t work if you start trying to imagine the other person’s anatomy, so just instead focus on the moment you’re in.
What are they like? How do they make you feel? What do they do that’s important to you to make you feel loved? Do they let you curl up and cuddle with them for hours? Do they lay there and talk out the problems and solutions to all things ailing humanity? Do they make you laugh? Do they make you feel that you have nothing to hide, nothing to be ashamed of? Do they play silly thought games with you? Do they let you wrestle them in bed? Do they make sure to bring a bottle of water or two into the bedroom before sex? Do they lie there with you in silence while you play them every song that you feel illustrates every fragile, vulnerable feeling in your heart? Do they, despite your insecurities, persist in gentle dismantling the emotional wall you built around your heart?
Again, don’t worry about what they’ll look like or what the world will think of them. Eventually, you’ll realize that you’re sharing a bed with a god or goddess, but until then, just focus on whatever traits make you feel at ease and loved right now.
It’s important to NOT try to imagine a specific person by looks, by voice, etc., whether you know them personally or not, whether you’re in a relationship right now or not. Don’t worry about how to slip into their DMs or get their attention through some other means. This is about cultivating your own belief in your worthiness to be loved, not a manifestation exercise. This is especially important for astrologers to understand, as we have a tendency to find a chart we really like and then try to fit the human around it (there’s a blog post coming about this tendency we have to fall in love with astrological charts), especially when we find a “perfect” chart.
Especially when we find a “perfect” chart before we even find that “perfect” human.
Once you get this exercise going, remember how you feel. This is how you should feel when you’re with someone, and if not, they’re not for you.
Me? I actually just started doing this to see what happens.
I wonder what will appear in the dark bedroom of my heart.