The planet Mars is going retrograde on September 9th/10th and will last until November 13th/14th. This occurs every two years, with the previous one happening in the summer of 2018. Some of the themes of this retrograde could have started seeding since late July when the pre-retrograde shadow period began. In the weeks, and especially days, prior to the retrograde its energies and themes can become more obvious.
Retrograde periods are when a planet appears to be moving backwards in the sky due to its position around the Sun relative to Earth’s position. It is a period of re-working how we orientate ourselves with the energies of that specific planet, in the sign it is in, and how it interacts with our personal astrological blueprint (one’s natal chart). The most significant retrogrades are those of the personal planets Mercury, Venus, and Mars.
Mars: Assertion, Willpower, Courage, Desires, Sex, Aggression, and Anger
Mars is a yang/male planet that is associated with how we apply action. When retrograde, its energies get amplified as it ends up being opposite the Sun and appears at its brightest when looking at the night sky. This is like the ‘Full Moon’ for Mars as it receives the most light from the Sun. It has already been gradually getting brighter in the months leading up to this.
During this retrograde, Mars themes will be highlighted and the circumstances ultimately can help us to facilitate some sort of adjustment in how we express the energies of this planet. This could influence we apply our energy, willpower, motivations, desires, and sexuality, as we all as how we deal with aggression and anger.
Mars is associated with assertiveness, masculinity, competing, fighting, war, muscles, vigor, sex, force, muscles, and physical energy in general. Issues or developments pertaining to these things can get cranked up over these coming months and we may also see more conflicts play out in the world.
This can be a time in which people can get more easily angered, irritated, and aggressive. There can be a build-up of inner tension which eventually can be expressed outwardly, sometimes in a passive-aggressive way. If this applies to you, it would be wise to find a healthy way to release anger and ease tension in a way that is not harmful to you or the people in your life.
Some of the frustrations that occur at this time could be as a result of things not flowing smoothly and wasted efforts. If this happens to you, it would be good to consider that something needs to change with the way you are applying yourself and pay attention to signs from the Universe.
It is usually more probable that this occurs when taking new initiatives, but not in every case. If so, it may be better to revisit old tasks, projects, and efforts and you may find that doing this can be more productive. For many people, it can also be a good time to go more inward. However, this will not make you immune to all of its perceived negative effects which ultimately should help you in your personal development.
Mars Retrograde In Aries, Chiron Also In Aries
Mars will be in its home sign of Aries throughout the entirety of its retrograde. It has been there since late June (before the pre-retrograde shadow began) and will stay until January 6th/7th, eight weeks after the retrograde ends. Aries is an assertive sign and shares much of the same Mars themes mentioned earlier in the article, they are both hot and fiery energies.
Aries is forward, direct, pioneering, initiating, bold, quick, courageous, competitive, and antagonistic. It is associated with the self, individual needs, identity, independence, and leadership. As a fire sign, Aries is a passionate and active energy. It can also be combative, argumentative, impatient, impulsive, selfish, dominating, trigger happy, and one-pointed. The retrograde process itself is a time of recalibration in how we assert ourselves in these Aries ways of expression along with how it is configured with our individual natal charts.
However, with Aries being a very forward moving sign (which is what Mars is and likes) having its ruler moving backwards (or stationary) here can increase the potential of frustration and conflicts in comparison to when this is occurring in other signs. When experiencing this, it is a good idea to take a step back and try to look at the situation objectively. In many cases, the challenges that come up are there to show you that perhaps you need to take a different approach to something.
Chiron has also been in Aries since 2018 and will be there until 2027. This is a longer term period of healing, seeking wholeness, solutions, and the potential for empowerment connected to these Aries areas of life mentioned. This Mars retrograde is contributing to that process as well.
Mars Retrograde Square Saturn In Capricorn
As Mars begins its retrograde it will first return to a square with Saturn which will peak from September 25th to October 3rd. This can reflect obstacles and limitations that can be getting in our way. Our tasks may require extra patience and caution during this time.
We may be faced with resistance, scrutiny, or realism in how we assert ourselves. Aggressiveness could be met with resistance or the need to address anger issues may come up. Conflicts around boundaries or restrictions can play out. This is one of the more important periods of the retrograde that we can learn from. It can help to show us what we need to be doing differently, however, not every issue related to this energy will have that purpose.
Mars made its first exact square with Saturn (during pre-retrograde period) in late August. It is possible that we may see some correlations or developments happen in late September, and/or early October, that are connected to developments that occurred during the first square.
In the news, that was when the Kenosha police shooting of Jacob Blake occurred and it was when we started to see some supposed cases of Covid-19 reinfections discussed in the media. Also, during that period there were massive freedom/anti-lockdown rallies in London and Berlin which didn’t get much media attention.
During this specific square, Saturn will be stationary as it ends its retrograde on September 29th. This puts a strong exclamation mark on the themes mentioned in the above paragraphs. Over the following days and weeks (after September 29th) as Saturn begins to move forward, we can experience some sort of change in dynamics connected to Saturn ruled areas of responsibilities, commitments, duties, structures, and in other ways depending on how it correlates with your personal astrological blueprint. It is also possible to experience some sort of development connected to things that occurred in the first half of May or in early February.
Mars Square Pluto & Jupiter In Capricorn
Following Mars’ square with Saturn, it then moves toward a square with Pluto which is also in Capricorn. This will peak from October 6th-12th, and interestingly similar to the square with Saturn, Pluto will also be stationary when squared by Mars as it will end its retrograde in the days prior on October 4th. This amplifies Pluto’s general themes in the weeks before and after the retrograde ends.
Pluto is associated with power, hidden matters, destruction, abuse, the underworld, subversion, obsessions, compulsive behavior, control, manipulation, jealousy, domination, shadows, darkness, purging, death, fear and viruses. Its energy is deep, transformative, evolutionary, sexual, intense, and regenerating. As Pluto begins to move forward, it is possible that there can be some developments and shifts connected to these things, however, since Mars is in a square with it, we can also expect conflicts connected to these Plutonian themes. .
Mars retrograde in Aries square stationary Pluto is one of the most intense astrological configurations that can happen between two planets and can also be expressed in a highly passionate way as well. Collectively and in geopolitical matters, some of the many issues that have been playing out in the world since spring can be intensified and we will also see different expressions of this energy unfold.
This Mars retrograde period and other happenings of 2020 are playing a significant part in the Pluto in Capricorn process which began in 2008 and will last until 2024. This is a long term period that is facilitating major changes that are ultimately seeding new things pertaining to structures around government, banking/finance, business and power structures. I wrote an article about this back in 2017, you can click here to read it.
Mars then moves towards a square with Jupiter which is strong from October 17th – 22nd. This can play out as conflicts around beliefs, perspectives, opinions, ideals, judgements, media, education, teachers/gurus, or issues pertaining to foreign countries. During the period in which it is strong, the assertive, competitive, and combative energy of Mars can be more excessive. It can be a time in which actions can be misguided due to the overlooking of blindspots.
It is important to note that although the Mars’ aspects to Saturn, Pluto, and Jupiter are strongest in the periods mentioned, these energies are still present throughout the retrograde and in the post shadow period.
Mercury Going Retrograde At Peak of Mars Retrograde, Jupiter Conjunct Pluto As Mars Retrograde Ends
Mercury will be going retrograde on October 13th/14th, primarily in Scorpio yet also partially in Libra. This will be happening as Mars opposes the Sun which is the halfway point of its retrograde. At this time, and in the days surrounding those dates, the potentials of frustrations, conflicts, and fights will be higher. However, there are also some other nice aspects happening then which can be beneficial for certain relationships, spirituality, as well as idealistic and compassionate matters.
Jupiter is moving towards its third and final conjunction with Pluto, which will peak in mid-November, but is also triggered in mid-October due to the Sun and Mars in a square to the midpoint of these two planets. Considering this and the fact that Mercury will be primarily retrograde in Scorpio, this is an energy that can be further revealing of Plutonian issues of shadows, abuse, hidden matters, and darkness.
The first conjunction of Jupiter-Pluto happened in late March and early April, when there was a lot of conspiracy information coming out and also widespread fear which is associated with Pluto. It can also be transformative, empowering, and a time of tremendous growth depending on what we are doing. I will be writing a separate article on this upcoming retrograde, join my mailing list here to ensure that you receive it.
Another thing to note is that Mercury’s retrograde will be ending on November 3rd/4th, the same day as the US Presidential election. I would expect that there will be some issues with the votes, or other aspects of the election, that may take some more time to get clear on. There will probably be some sort of change in gears that week as well.
As Jupiter reaches its exact final conjunction with Pluto, Mars will also be finishing its retrograde at that time which all happens in the 2nd-3rd week of November. It is likely we will see some similar themes as late-March and early-April that I’ve mentioned in the two paragraphs prior to this one, yet this time the energy is more action oriented.
Considering Mars is stationary and changing motion we can expect to see some developments that could be a major ‘next step’, or perhaps some sort of conclusion to things that transpired throughout the retrograde. However, since Mars is returning to a square with Pluto, the energy can still be intense, destructive, and involve power struggles or fighting against abuse, authority, or dark agendas. This can also be a good energy to take on challenges, applying ourselves towards major changes, and assertive ourselves with tremendous focus and determination.
What To Reflect On During This Mars Retrograde?
Do you feel like you need to make adjustments in the way you project and assert yourself or your beliefs? How is the external world responding to you? Is there anything, or an approach to something, that you want to experiment with? What’s important for you as an individual? How do you go about fulfilling your personal needs or what do you need to do to satisfy them?
Do you have anger or aggression issues that you need to address? Are you competing or fighting for the sake of doing so, or are you doing it for good reasons? Do you have any past ideas or initiatives that you’ve been wanting to revisit or experiment with lately? Are you experiencing problems or conflicts pertaining to boundaries, and what do you need to do about it? Are there aspects of your sexuality or sexual relationships that are changing or you may feel like are due for a change?
These are some examples of what to reflect on during this time. The retrograde ends on November 13th/14th. From that point on until early January, we can experience a change in dynamics around some Mars related themes and expressions that have come up for adjustment during the retrograde period.