Saturday, January 21, 2012

Managing Mars Retrograde (Jan. 23 - April 14, 2012)

By Astrologer Philip Sedgwick

Monday, Mars, the second least likely classical planet to move retrograde, does just that. He remains retrograde until April 14th. Given that Mars can represent new and start-up action, does that mean nothing new can be initiated for nearly twelve weeks?

Conventionally, starting new projects during retrogrades, especially those of Mars (next week), Mercury (coming around again in March for three weeks) and Venus (six weeks in May - June), is not recommended. That said, it is also true that often folks can miss out on fully applying magnificent transits, such as a rush of beneficial Jupiter energy or the titillating boost to the next life valence level offered by Uranus (or Ceres or Eris).

Did I just recommend ignoring the retrograde adages of astrology? No, not exactly. To navigate the close-to-shore straits of these celestial channels, care is needed. Honestly, general axioms slopped onto collective consciousness is a difficult thing. And one must be like the fox crossing the ice, as noted in the I-Ching. Listen carefully, feel everything, watch your environment like a hawk, and pay attention to your guts and hackles.

Perhaps the best approach might be one of seeking out your favorite astrologer who can examine your chart with your soulful priorities in mind and working to ensure the best results from real world matters. Categorically, this is not a time for generalization. Apply the uniqueness of your chart and figure out with a professional what might be your optimal path. Some people can and will flourish during any of the retrogrades noted above. Some should be encouraged to advance, while others should be supported in reviewing, editing and developing savvy strategies for the near future in lieu of pushing a rope.

To begin the theme of managing this Mars retrograde, an interesting ongoing conjunction can be well applied. Presently, and for the next three months, the centaur, Asbolus, hangs out with the mystifying dwarf planet Sedna. Sedna's priorities evolve from a perihelion in Cancer (security stuff - it's urgent, dammit) and the node in Leo (spinning a tidy, soulful aura).

First and foremost, do you have what you need in this mundane plane to provide shelter, comfort and nourishment? This is essential, and also soulfully supportive. When confronting any new circumstance or opportunity offered by others, use Asbolus to see if it's a good, fostering fit.

Asbolus was an augur and noted for reliable intuition and insight, unless he was under the influence of wine. Like Chiron, we was wise, just and typically spot on with his perceptive assessments of the immediate environment. His "psychic" perceptions were not based on what will come from the future, but more in the "take care of right now and tomorrow likely unfolds better" line of thinking. He was sense oriented, heavy on the olfactory. If things don't pass your sniff test in terms of is this a good fit or not, pass. If you "get" instinctively that the situation on your immediate horizon works, go for it.

Second on Sedna's list after securing mundane elements, is remembering one's major life quest. What was the reason for this incarnation? Not sure? Well, consider this: if you were forced to reincarnate again next week, what life tools would you absolutely want to have that you now know and what would be your major campaign? Sometimes, if one's immediate, ego-based sense of progress in life can be set aside for just an instant or two, large, long-term agendas can reappear out of what seems to be unending space. Again, Asbolus helps. When a flash of insight demands your attention, look toward it.

Instinctive issues intact, let's look at a few other gizmos supporting progress in this upcoming Mars madness. Jupiter in Taurus makes a trine to Pluto and to the anti-Pluto, as astronomer Mike Brown likes to call it - actually an alternate Pluto - Orcus. To the Etruscans, Orcus is Pluto and the keeper of oaths. Make a promise and follow through and Orcus smiles upon you.

At the start of Mars retrograde, Jupiter logs in at 1 Taurus 49, trine to Orcus at 3 Virgo 35 and also trine to Pluto at 8 Capricorn 8. Folks, that's a grand trine in earth. If this pattern matches up with your personal horoscope, the lights are lining up green. But there is an “iff” here. If and only if your goals are set, your aspirations high, your declarations precise and your intent to follow through completely intact. Intent matched with passionate action yields manifestation.

And in the oh, by the way category, Mars stationing at 23 Virgo 05 is one degree away from a trine to Sedna in Taurus, who is less than one degree away from having the partile conjunction company of Asbolus. That's definitely supportive grease to apply to life's sticky wickets.

Jupiter moves into a precise trine with Orcus on February 6th. Now at more than three degrees into Taurus, the ever so dramatic Jove's trine to Pluto, like the plot, has thickened. This is a time in which New Year's resolutions and life long aspirations and the purpose of this lifetime's affirmations receive more celestial consideration than usual. Get on with putting it out there... but only if you mean it every bone of your suddenly not so weary body.

Let's also consider that fantastic point in a retrograde, where the retrograde planet aligns with the Earth and the Sun. For Mars in the upcoming reversal, this occurs on March 3rd. It's a one day only buy into new action sale!

Next in the sequence, Jupiter moves into a trine with Pluto on or about March 12th. Yes, Pluto is involved, but let's keep in mind, that according to mythic tales, Pluto had to comply with the whim and will of Jupiter. With well-applied Jupiterian principles, you know... clear vision, wonderfully grounded aspirations and enthusiasm out the proverbial yin-yang, projects can be blessed by Pluto. Passion, enduring devotion, and monetizing can spin out of this pattern of progress. It should also be noted that at this time, Mars is slightly more than one degree from exact angles with Jupiter and Pluto, completing yet another grand earth trine.

Finally, Mars returns direct in mid April. When he does, guess what? He and Orcus align in Virgo on the opposite side of the chart of Neptune. The vision, inspiration and creativity associated with a well-used Neptune gathers unprecedented momentum and direction through articulation and action. Envision it. Talk it. Walk it.

No doubt Mars in Virgo knots a few things and inspires grumbling. But also know that when the knots appear in a previously created strategy, the unraveling of necessary details is but a short time from appearing.

One final note: is reporting a coronal mass ejection which now heads our way from an eruption that occurred on the 19th. The blast is due to hit Earth on the 21st. Expect the usual mind out of synch with body malaise and a general decay of collective coping skills. Take an extra breath before launching on a Ceres in Aries tirade, and realize everyone will be feeling a little extra edgy.

For those who would love to use these materializing grand trines to make a difference and advance evolution, insight and progress, maybe the support of a consultation might do the trick. Yep, it's time to sign up now before the rush - you know, the rush that usually happens when personal planets retrograde. Remember to get the Galactic Trilogy CD and my lectures on DVD, too. You know how Virgo loves information that helps connect the dots, or draw the lines in the sky to give form to the constellations.

Philip Sedgwick is the author of The Sun At The Center: A Primer on Heliocentric Astrology
Contact Philip at: 520.888.1920 or Email;
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