Mercury retrograde just ended — and it was a doozy — so it feels terribly unfair that now we’re being hit with a Mars retrograde! We experience Mars retrograde every second year, and it lasts for a while: typically between 70 and 80 days. Ouch.
In 2014, Mars is retrograde from March 1st to May 19th. Yes, that’s over two and a half months!
You may be asking, ‘What the hell is retrograde?’, so here’s a very basic explanation. When a planet is retrograde, that means it appears to be going backwards in the sky.
In astrology, each planet is associated with various aspects of life, so when a planet is retrograde, all of those aspects get a little screwy. For example, Venus rules beauty, love and art, so Venus retrograde can put a real dampener on your love life! Mercury rules communication, transportation and itty-bitty details, so Mercury retrograde is an awful time to sign a contract or travel the world. Every planet goes retrograde, but some seem to affect us more than others (or maybe we just notice it more).
So I bet you’re wondering, ‘What does Mars rule?’ Well, it rules sex, war, and new beginnings.
Here’s how to persevere!
Mars isn’t just the planet of sex and war, it’s also a planet that symbolises energy and vitality. It’s associated with Aries, and if you’ve ever met an Aries, you’ll know they love to fight, they love to get freaky in the sheets, and they have energy like no one you’ve ever known. Your typical Aries is like the Energiser Bunny… Except angry. So, during Mars retrograde, you can expect to have lower energy than usual. In fact, you might feel downright slothful.
Mars is a planet of action: it’s total “get ‘er done” energy. It makes sense, then, for Mars retrograde to be the opposite. You might find that new plans and projects just seem to come to a standstill. As much as you push, you could feel like you’re not making any headway. Frustrating? You betcha!
The astrological forecast is bickering with a chance of unexpected rage. Eek.
Keep an eye on your health. If you’re someone who bottles up their feelings, don’t be surprised if you find yourself feeling under the weather. Internalising your stress is bad for your health, you know!
During Mars retrograde, whoever initiates loses. Brutal! See below:
“With a new project, it will fizzle out and never really go anywhere. With a hot romance, it too fizzles and it rarely gets to the altar. With an argument, the hostility will come back to haunt you later. In legal matters, stoke your opponent into initiating the lawsuit first. It will be etched in granite that they will lose. In an international war, whoever fires first will automatically lose or ultimately withdraw. Matters commenced while Mars is retrograde will be frustrated and plagued with disruptions until they finally fizzle out.” (Lynn Koiner)
But it’s not all bad news. There are plenty of positive things that can come out of Mars retrograde!
You might just discover some benefits from putting those projects and plans on ice. Pump the brakes and take this time to be patient and make plans. It’s great energy for plotting world domination.
Since Mars represents strength and follow-through, consider planting seeds for the future. For example, you might like to start researching a new workout regimen, or investigating leads for a project. Don’t act now, you’ll probably just get held up, but start gathering information and get ready to spring into action!
Any kind of retrograde is a good time to go back and examine past behaviour or motives that are related to that planet. In the case of Mars retrograde, you might be appraising your anger, the way you defend yourself, the way you argue, your personal motivations, and how you operate in intimate relationships. Are you passive-aggressive? Do you have a history of hostility, or do you shrink from confrontation? Take a look at your past actions, and you may be surprised.
“Anger and its alter-egos — depression, fear, resentment and cynicism — are all common reactions to feeling overwhelmed and vulnerable. Learn to deal with these anger-reactions better and you’ll be able to deal with Mars better.” (Evolving Door Astrology)
Get ready to get your kink on: Mars retrograde is definitely a time when the lid can get blown right off any sexual desires that have been suppressed for too long! The same goes for untapped passions and ambitions. This can be scary and unexpected, but it can also be massively positive in terms of getting you in touch with your true self!
Sex with the ex? Yes, it can — and often does — happen!
Remember to be extra-kind to any Aries or Scorpios that you know. They may feel the effects of Mars retrograde even more strongly than the rest of us!
All of this being said, no matter what’s going on in the sky, it’s not the end of the world (well, unless the Sun explodes, I guess). I would argue that a lot of what goes on in your life — if not 100%! — is dependent on your attitude. It’s up to you as to how you choose to deal with any issues that come up. You could see them as stumbling blocks or building blocks. It’s totally your choice!
Here we go…
Photos by Ahmet Unver from L’Officiel Turkey.