Venus, the Descent/Ascent of Inanna and the 7 Gates to the Underworld, or is it Upperworld?

by Agent 12 – Julija Simas

Current Venus Cycle !

After her brightest morning star apparition or after her maximum elongation as morning star, Venus begins the next stage of her evolutionary cycle, through the 7 MOONGATES toward the next Venus Star Point of Aries !
Will it be an underworld or upper-world experience? Only you will know!

Different traditions as I have found begin the “Descent of Inanna” through the cycle of Venus and the Moon, either after the first meeting of the waning Moon and Venus after brightest morning star apparition or after maximum elongation as morning star. I would suggest if you wish to work closer with Venus and align with her physical apparitions, then you can decide which would be the best for you, we are talking about Venus after all!

From the emergent phase of youth and the stability of her brightest apparition 36 days before her maximum elongation, shining bright as the morning Star, Venus is full of growing confidence and drive and has a mission ahead that seeks accomplishment, fulfilment and the next great Venusian experience. Venus quite naturally shows us how to attract what we want and desire.

Whilst studying the Venus cycle,  I was always perplexed as to the story of “Inanna’s descent into the underworld” and her journey there through the 7 gates and how it related to the cycle of Venus.  It was generally understood by astrologers that Venus would be in the underworld only when retrograde and invisible to us. Yet when retrograde Venus is only not visible in our skies for about 8-16 days as she moves between Earth and in front of the Sun from our perspective. I always wondered where were the 7 gates? How does this work? As the retrograde was and still is, often referred to as the “Descent of Inanna into the underworld”, yet something didn’t quite fit. How could this relate to a 7 gated journey? It seemed like there wasn’t enough time! Venus’ retrograde perios is being 40 days and 40 nights(sometimes 42-43), yet the disappearance from our skies is only for up to 8 – 16 days. Further into my searching, I noticed that there is  a period of time that Venus disappears from our skies for much longer, on her way to and through the outer conjunction with the Sun. This is when she is moving very fast and keeping pace with the Sun, therefore travelling with its light and invisible to us  for more that 60 days. It seemed this could be a far greater underworld journey than the one she takes when nearing the Earth and retrograde.

It was not long after that I came across this in a book Astrology a New Generation, where astrologer Cary Caton (Astrology: The New Generation, can be found at this link,), retells the story of the “Inanna’s descent into the underworld,” reflecting the cycle of Venus and her journey through the 7 gates before she gets there. Gary writes that the journey to the underworld  begins with the first waning Moon conjunction with Venus after her max elongation as the morning star. Astrologer Gemini Brett Agent C*I*A 1123, has taught many of us that in shamanic astrological traditions this descent begins after her brightest apparition.  The time between these two points is about 36 days, and the Moon Gate connection can happen anywhere inbetween and even twice as a moon cycle is 28 days.

Whichever point you want to start with, either way it is a truly beautiful connection and one that helps us to connect further to the planet Venus, connecting ourselves with her cycle throughout our lives.

To learn more on the current journey  and cycle of Venus – Gemini -Aries 
– with Arielle Guttman and Gemini Brett and Julija Simas 
see our latest Venus Cycle Gemini Masterclass NOW discounted and available for immediate access

The story of Innana’s descent into the underworld is a very old tale stemming from ancient Sumeria, a deep and powerful myth that is reflected by the journey of Venus toward her outer conjunction with the Sun. Physically during this journey she lowers in the sky each night and dims as she moves further away from us, appearing to descend from our perspective. These ancient tales stem from way before we knew of the Sun centred solar system. Yet these days we know it is toward a superior conjunction in her orbit around the Sun that she is heading. As she she moves closer toward the Sun, we no longer see her, if she could be seen at this phase, we would see, she is also in her fullness. At all other times, we only see Venus as gibbous waxing, or waning , or a crescent when she is closest to earth. We may want to view this “descent” in a different perspective. Consciousness changes much in my eyes and I would like to also address that I see this phase as Venus moving toward her most heavenly apparition , as far away from earth as possible, up with the Gods!  Does it have to be the underworld? Couldn’t it be to the  upperworld?  Here Venus represents a search for a more divine aspect of herself,  in ancient Greece one of the apparitions of Venus was known as the heavenly Venus, Aphrodite  Urania, as discussed here,, when closest to the Earth(and retrograde), Venus was known as Aphrodite Pandemos.

Yet the tale is still potent and can be very significant to us in our lives as i have seen now many times. An interesting note, is that it was because of Galileo’s discovery that Venus had phases that the whole copernican revolution began to make sense to our ancient discoverers.

The whole synodic cycle of Venus can be seen as a complete journey of 19 months and looked at in stages as the diagram below depicts. The pink lines denoting her conjunctions with the Sun and maximum elongation points. The shaded areas are when she is invisible to us. The black area is where she is heading now. In my teachings on the Venus cycle, I also relate it to the zodiac wheel as can be done with any cycle or circle.

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The story of the descent into the underworld goes a bit like this, although there are a few different yet similar versions. Innana is sent to a funeral in the underworld. In order to enter the underworld she must prepare herself, purify herself, by giving up one piece of her clothing  or jewellery at each
 of the 7 gates she passes. She enters the underworld stripped bare, completely exposed, is then  killed by her dark 
counterpart and sister Erishkigal (an analogy to our shadow selves)  she is hung upside-down on a hook for 3 days and is resurrected by magical 
beings who sprinkle the bread and water of life 60 times to give her, 
her life back.

In order to ascend, back out of the underworld, she must also sacrifice something, in this case she chooses her husband who has taken the throne in her absence. She ascends again and at each 7 gates is given back the equivalent piece of clothing or jewels where she is then restored back to full brightness as the Evening Star after 7 Moon, months and 7 gates, climaxing at her maximum elongation as the evening star, reinstated as the Queen of the heavens at her brightest phase again. All this reflecting Venus growing in height and in brightness again in evening skies.

The story reflects the cycle of Venus as she begins her descent into the underworld, after the max elongation as morning star approx 72 days after her retrograde conjunction with Sun. The next 7 months of Venus Moon (waning Moon) conjunctions begin the descent of the Goddess into the underworld. The 7 subsequent Venus Moon conjunctions denote the 7 gates of preparation for the underworld, where at each gate she removes an item of clothing or jewellery. Entering the  underworld when approx 10 degrees way from the superior conjunction which takes another month.

Here she is completely exposed, at this stage of her cycle Venus is in full bloom, so to speak, like the full Moon. As all other times during the cycle of Venus we see her as a gibbous shape or a crescent shape, and we never see her full. So to be full at a time when we can’t see her adds another depth to the story. To be full of ourselves, true, authentic, whole is a journey we go through alone. Here Venus is fully exposed to the Gods, stripped down to her bare bones, with nothing to hide behind and no-one to protect her except the real, true and the authentic self. This is her time away with the Gods, it’s a very private passage, away from mundane world, be it an underworld or an upperworld experience, it will vary for all of us, nevertheless a passage of empowerment. It is a passage of letting go, transformation and renewal. At the retrograde phase 9.5 mths earlier we work toward readjustments in our lives and move to start afresh, at this stage, we deliver the goods and prove to ourselves we can do it and who we are as if we are making a pact with our inner god, guide, muse. So consider where you may be heading and the challenge ahead as we pass through these 7 gates. Please note an 8th waning Moon conjunction occurs around the same time or very close to the superior conjunction, yet Venus is already in the underworld/upperworld, and invisible in our skies, yet could be considered like the 8th gate.

The variations and our own experience of each passage depends on which how this Star Point connects in our own charts. As the peak of this passage is the Sun/Venus superior conjunction Star Point, we need to also remember its connection to the last Aries Star Point which happened when Venus was retrograde on the other side of the Sun (See above tables), 4 years ago in March 2017.  Each star point connects an 8 year, but also 4 year cycle in our astrology chart. I have numerous classes and FREE presentations about her ongoing cycle here:

Exactly when the 7 Moongate journey begins varies in each cycle, but also when we have a list of Venus Moon conjunctions and we see a few possibilities, if we look at Gemini’s table above, and the dates below. The shamanic view is that Venus will take off her crown at her brightest point this time around,  as her brightest apparition is around July 8th and the moon meets her only a few days later around the 16th , and  given that in this cycle there are still 8 gates before she fully disappears, I would like to see her retain her crown a little longer,  therefore begining the MOONGATE journey after max elongation as morning star on 15th August at &°. This degree of Cancer is particularly significant for me as it is my North Node, so again encouraging you to work our you own steps and significant gates. It’s the meaning behind the journey that is most important!

It is all about  working with what works best for you. I would advise if you want to take this intentional journey with Venus over the next 8 months, then see what dates and what degrees are most significant for you!

Venus morning star Cycle :
13° GEM – Star Point – June 5th, 2020
13° GEM – brightest morning apparition – 17th July

7 Moon Gates begin: –
Gate 7 – 7° CANCER 15th Aug
Gate 6 – 8° LEO 14th Sep
Gate 5 – 13° VIRGO 14th Oct
Gate 4 – 19°LIBRA 13th Nov
Gate 3 -26° SCORPIO 13th Dec
Gate 2- 3° CAP 12th Jan- 2021
Gate 1 – 11° AQ 11th Feb – still just visible (Sun at 22° AQ)

19° Pisces – 13th March – (invisible)
5° Aries – Star Point – (invisible superior exterior conjunction)

Contemplate yourself at each gate, what would you take off symbolically to reflect and accentuate your own journey. Perhaps something that you may wear as a shield, a mask, something that you feel  maybe preventing you from being your true self , perhaps your make up, your clothes, your jewellery, a partner, any of those things/relationships, entanglements that Venus represents that add to our sense of self worth , self love and self value. The whole experience is about helping you define what is truly important and authentic. Remember that the journey is also an inner one, private, it is being witnessed only by the God’s and your shadow side, no one else. Although no doubt it will be reflected in your outer world as well.

It is important to look ahead at the coming Star Point in Aries, to focus the mission and its intent, and what the MOON GATE process will be about!. Think back at what happened for you 8 years ago when the Venus Point superior conjunction happened here, and 4 years ago when the retrograde happened here and in your chart.  It will give you an idea of what trial/experience you may need to relive,  or re-visit, re experience. What astrological house of your chart does this occur for you, what area of life is being targeted by this next star point, you could see it as a star gate, a point we cross through in which life will never be the same again.

At each gate visualize the journey with your own symbols. What do you need to take off  to reveal the most authentic you! What mask ? What may you be hiding behind? A false relationship, an unfulfilling job, something that is making you unhappy, preventing you to truly unfurl in life’s journey? At each Moon /Venus conjunction let go of something, one thing at a time, as you move toward wholeness and the necessary cyclical transformation of personal growth and evolution.

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Pick 7 symbols, your crown, your earrings, your necklace, your breastplate, your measuring rod, your loin cloth

Gate 7 – Her crown her godhood, her connection to heaven, the crown chakra.

Gate 6 – The small lapis beads earrings her sense of magic and ability to manifest, third eye.

Gate 5- Double strand of beads necklace, her rapture of illumination, her throat chakra.

Gate 4 – Breastplate called “Come, man, come” her emotional heart,   her heart chakra.

Gate 3 – Golden hip girdle, her ego, her solar plexus.

Gate 2 – Lapis measuring rod in her hand, her will, at the level of her genitals.

Gate 1  – Garment of ladyship, breechcloth, her sex role, her root chakra.

Take the time to reflect on your journey forward and make time and space at every Venus Moon conjunction over the next 7 months, to contemplate and adjust your journey forward. It is important to create and follow your own story to adapt it to your life and current experience. It could be a journey that’s more confronting for some than others, and can be taken in context of what is emerging, or needs , or wants to emerge in one’s life.

What would you like to deliver to the Gods, by March 25th 2021?  Venus morning star is a warrior Venus,  strengthening, moving faster and on a mission to achieve and activate what was contemplated, absorbed, perceived, awakened back during the recent retrograde of  June 2020.  Quite a determined mission awaits us all with the focus being a Venus star point in Aries, ruled by Mars who has his own great readjustment ahead, with the coming and rare retrograde in Aries that hasn’t happened for 32 years.

As always a better understanding of planetary cycles and the Venus cycle in your and around your astrology chart will help you clarify what this journey is about for you this time around the back of the Sun.. If you have a project or a plan it is a most wonderful time to act, and activate over the coming months

Awaken the inner Venusian warrior, she is here to guide you/us and together with the MOON, the Venus/MOON Gates will strengthen your intentional journey!

FOR now, envisage what your Cosmic Crown looks like, draw it, paint it make it and put it on!