by Robert Wilkinson
Yes, Mars is slowing in motion, preparing to go retrograde in late Libra. What does this mean?
Mars will go stationary retrograde March 1, 8:24 am PST, 4:24 pm Greenwich, at 28 Libra. I'll be posting several articles about Mars retrograde as well as the swirl of other planets going retrograde and direct in the near future. For now, remember that a retrograde doesn't necessarily mean something bad. Let's review some things to remember about Mars retrograde.
First, there are many things that move forward exactly as they should during Mars retrograde periods. Though there may seem to be less momentum to some things, even delays and the need to rework some things, or wait for other things to develop before picking up the original intention, there are ways to navigate these recurring periods and keep everything on track quite nicely. It doesn't have to be much of a problem if we position ourselves correctly given the shift in the pace and unfolding of events.
Also, please remember that the planets do not "cause" anything. Whether and how things happen or don't during a retrograde period has everything to do with us and others' actions and reactions to things, both past and present. The free will of human beings has far more power than a planetary retrograde!
As I wrote in (soon to be an ebook - working on it as you read these words!) "A New Look at Mercury Retrograde," Chapter 1, "What Is Mercury Retrograde and Why Does It Seem to Cause So Many Hassles?"
Throughout the year, usually one or more planets are retrograde. Sometimes there are as many as four to six retrogrades occurring simultaneously... A planet, when retrograde, simply indicates a slowing of its orbital speed relative to the Sun from the perspective of the Earth. Some planets slow for a few weeks; some for a few months.... In our Solar system, the motion of the planets and the "lights" (the Sun and Moon) symbolize the ebb and flow of the universal life that we all live within.
This is why it is inappropriate to attribute a problem to a retrograde; though there may be some apparent correlation, a retrograde cannot "cause" anything. This may be the most commonly held misunderstanding about astrology and how it works. Any astrological configuration simply symbolizes a state of time within which life manifests.
It is true that many things seem to happen because of an astrological association. However, the cause of all that happens (if and when there is a concrete cause at all) is a prior action, or inaction. All that is, all that occurs, is a part of a larger natural process of unfoldment. All our experiences give us opportunities to be led out of ignorance and fear of the unknown into a greater awareness of the interrelationships between all things.
Mars retrograde represents a period where the timing and coordination of things, as well as how fast or slow things seem to be happening, take on a different pace and rhythm of development. At this time in history as we approach the Great Fracturing of late April, slowing things down a bit might be exactly what’s needed!
Perhaps Mars in Libra will give everyone enough moderation that reasonable heads will prevail as the world goes through massive disputes, upheavals, and disruptions thanks to the on-going Cardinal T-square involving Jupiter, Uranus, and Pluto. Once we get past Venus square Mars, we should be able to keep things in perspective without getting distracted or throw off balance by momentary interruptions.
As I’ve mentioned in previous articles, the Mars stationary retrograde degree at 28 Libra is the same as the Venus stationary direct degree of November 2010. This would imply that the Venus oriented lessons and experiences related to overcoming isolation and realizing the life that’s all around us will now “be proved in action,” whether through reminders of what we were learning via Venus back then and after that SD station, or through actions that move us beyond feelings of isolation and separateness that we fell into around that time. This can un-do a lot that has left us feeling alienated since then.
The Sabian Symbol for 28 Libra is “A man in the midst of brightening influences." This is a degree of learning to experience the life that's all around us in order to overcome feelings of isolation and separateness.
Rudhyar says the last half of Libra is the "Span of Revelation," and the Scene of Reconstruction. In the Marc Jones class notes he offered in "The Astrology of Personality," he states this degree is one of "spiritual sustainment given to him who opens himself to his full destiny," "unsolicited help," and "slow realization of betterment."
In his "Astrological Mandala," we are told that this degree is one of realizing our community is sustaining us, and that we are as surrounded by life and our spiritual community as a fish by water. Furthermore, he states that through this degree we can find a sense of "belonging to a greater whole," which in turn can lead us to an "inner assurance."
Dr. Marc Jones says this symbol is one where life's "enduring rewards" come by accepting the "underlying friendliness of the world." We are told this offers us encouragement through our "courage in pressing forward on (our) pilgrimage from darkness to light," which confirms our potential.
He says the keyword is RESPONSIVENESS, and when positive, this degree is "a complete spiritual fellowship with human kind." The implication is that through Mars retrograde, we can and will realize a broader connectedness with others as we again re-trace our Libra lessons from now through mid-May, and then again re-trace the ground through mid-July.
Mars retrograde usually indicates there will be some things that must occur before other things can be done. Get clear about the priority of things, pay attention to the rhythm of unfolding events, and see much of what's come down the past few weeks as prelude to undoing, redoing, or reworking some things in March, April, and early May before picking the pace back up in late May. All of this relates to the life areas (houses) where we have Aries, Libra, and Scorpio.
Remember that sometimes a delay is the best thing that could happen as other things develop on their own, since I've found life is sometimes like a Charles Dickens novel. There are many chapters, many players, and some things cannot be known and/or acted upon until the plot develops.
But rest assured, that at the end of the play, all will be seen in proper perspective, the unknowns between the players become clear, and things have developed so that "the hero's journey" is perfectly completed. So during this Mars retrograde, do what you must, work and/or adapt the plan, don't fret at the apparent delays or slowness, and fit things into a long range perspective with an eye to the radical quickening to come in late May.
Copyright © 2014 Robert Wilkinson