Week 40 - 9.30.12 - 10.06.12 - Virgo
Materials: Copper, Sterling Silver
Ring Dimensions: .935” H x .946” W x .430” D
The constellation Virgo, which is Latin for ‘virgin’, lies between Leo to the west and Libra to the east, and is the second largest constellation in the sky (after Hydra). Virgo can be easily found through its brightest star, Spica, by following the curve of the Big Dipper to Arcturus in Boötes and continuing in the same curve - ’follow the arc to Arcturus and speed on to Spica’. Due to the effects of precession, the First Point of Libra, (also known as the Autumn Equinox Point) lies within the boundaries of Virgo, very close to Beta Virginis. This is one of the two points in the sky where the celestial equator crosses the ecliptic (the other being the First Point of Aries, now in the constellation of Pisces). This point will pass into the neighboring constellation of Leo around the year 2440.
Those personalities born between August 23rd and September 22nd are in the sixth sign of the zodiac. This mutable, earth sign combines practicality with an urge to apply it in the service of good deeds. Virgo likes to help people by improving their knowledge and conduct, and may be surprised if the recipients are ever uncooperative or react aggressively. Traditional Virgo features include conscientiousness, good character and integrity, and are likely to become a respected member of society. A Virgo first spoke the instruction ‘make yourself useful’. Younger Virgo may often appear to be in a constant hurry. Irrespective of age, they may possess a nervous energy that once focused, results in a very high rate of productivity. Characteristically, Virgo is concerned with health related matters. Scrupulous hygiene is important (both personal and domestic), and they probably have their own schedule of rituals and habits. A preoccupation with diets and healthy eating is likely and they may go on regular health kicks with a tendency to convince others to do likewise. Virgo hold an enduring idealism for the perfect partner but they are not always prone to romance or overt shows of affection. They like productive causes, defending the downtrodden, are probably strong in debates, and rarely at a loss in an argument. One negative feature in some Virgo is using the inability to achieve perfection as an excuse not to do anything. Also, it’s possible that the natural Virgo curiosity and good intentions can sometimes be regarded as meddling.
The constellation Virgo was also called Parthenos by the Greeks. She is usually identified as Dike, Goddess of Justice, who was the daughter of Zeus and Themis. Virgo is depicted with wings, reminiscent of an angel, holding an ear of wheat in her left hand (the star Spica). Dike features as the impartial observer in a moral tale depicting mankind’s declining standards. It was a favorite tale of Greek and Roman mythologists where Dike was supposed to have lived on Earth in the Golden Age of mankind, when Cronus ruled Olympus. It was a time of peace and happiness, a season of perennial spring when food grew without cultivation and humans never grew old. Men lived like the gods, not knowing work, sorrow, crime, or war. Dike moved among them, dispensing wisdom and justice. When Zeus overthrew his father Cronus on Olympus, the Silver Age began, inferior to the age that had just passed. In the Silver Age, Zeus shortened springtime and introduced the yearly cycle of seasons. Humans in this age became quarrelsome and ceased to honor the gods. Dike, longing for the idyllic days gone by, assembled the human race and spoke sternly to them for forsaking the ideals of their ancestors. “Worse is to come”, she warned them. Then she spread her wings and took refuge in the mountains, turning her back on mankind. Finally came the Ages of Bronze and Iron, when humans descended into violence, theft, and war. Unable to endure the sins of humanity any longer, Dike abandoned the Earth and flew up to heaven, where she sits to this day next to the constellation of Libra, which some see as the scales of justice.