April, Mars Retrograde – Feisty planet unleashed!

mars-cropA retrograde planet is doing something out of the usual ordered pattern and so it can act as an unpredictable force let loose.

Our Solar star, the Sun, is the life giving centre for our corner of the cosmos and at this time of year the Solar energy is transmitted through the sign of Aries. The Sun is blessed (in it’s exaltation) in this fire sign nearly as much as when it’s in it’s own fire sign, Leo. This time of year also has the force of Mars behind it, as ruler of Aries. Mars represents the potent primal drive in life and we see it strongly expressed as the vital energy of Spring. The main theme for this month has an emphatic Mars right up front, taking the lead in planetary events. Our “red planet” is currently in another fire sign, Sagittarius which also gives some extra thrust to an already feisty mode of expression. After the last few weeks of change, redirection and anti-climax all this assertive energy can have us impatient to make progress.

Trouble might be looming if we fail to take care as this next phase could bring further hindrance when all that fully charged up Martian drive goes into reverse mid month on the 17th. This current retrograde period for Mars will echo a similar one of fifteen years ago when his retrograde was also in Sagittarius. If that was a year of significant change or re-routing for you, then this year may have some similar trends in store. In general, the apparent backwards motion of Mars is a time when trying to push forward in an obvious, direct or dynamic way proves unproductive. A retrograde planet is doing something out of the usual ordered pattern and so it can act as an unpredictable force let loose.  Energy is hard to harness, initiatives seem slow to complete and the use of force yields little of the desired result. This retrograde lasts until the end of June and doesn’t clear fully until Mars regains it’s original ground in mid August.

This is a more internalised Mars than usual which is why it could become a virtual powder keg, ready to be set off when antagonised. Be careful not to let the frustration build up. Be aware of any anger that is being suppressed. Put your attention on finding ways to redirect your vitality into positive and self supporting initiatives. The power of this transit is best used for subjective or personal work. A lot can be achieved during a Mars retrograde phase. Get the basic needs of life in order. Recognise where you have an excess of energy or an abundance of something in your life and utilise it to overcome any sense of lack you have experienced.

Take notice of where Mars is in your own birth chart, if you know, and use these next weeks to better understand your personal way of expressing desires, your goals and how you achieve them. This is the best time to adjust the way that you dissipate or dilute your physical energy so it can be more productive for you in the future. You may feel the effect of this phase more strongly if you have your Sun or Moon in Aries or Scorpio or have either of those signs rising. Also, if Mars is combined with a personal planet or critical angle it will energise that area of your chart in particular.

The New Moon and Full Moon this month also support working with the Mars energy as they both occur in Mars ruled signs. The New Moon on 7th April falls on the most powerful degree for the Sun in Aries, so it’s especially potent for setting out new intentions for personal goals in preparation for the Mars retrograde period. The Full Moon in Scorpio on the 22nd is a time when any pent up emotions could find forceful expression. If you experience some uncontrolled release or passionate outburst take it as a signal that some part of your life needs attention. Allow any unexpected changes to serve as an opportunity to head in a new direction and make it become something positive in your life.

Planet Update – Astrology April 2012

This current Moon phase started with the New Moon on March 22 just two days after the spring equinox when the Sun moved into Aries. The dark phase of the Moon, when it reflects no light from the Sun and invisible to us, is a point of low energy with an apparent pause before the new crescent Moon becomes briefly visible once more, soon after sunset. Its reappearance marks a renewal and optimum time for initiation or beginnings. The sign of Aries is the first in the Zodiac and the movement of the Sun into that sign at equinox marks the start of the new Solar cycle. What we are experiencing now is the effect of both Lunar and Solar cycles commencing almost simultaneously in the very potent first few degrees of Aries.

Adding to the vibrancy, the two most excitable planets Uranus and Mercury were also in the first few degrees of Aries. This is giving us an exaggerated sense of stimulation and super fast pace for the weeks ahead. You may find that you have more things than usual needing your attention and probably more than you can easily manage in your allotted time. The area of life indicated by the location of Aries is in your birth chart will be most affected. This intense frantic energy should cool off a bit when the Moon becomes Full around the 6th April and the work or events of the last couple of weeks, begin to show its promise. There will finally be some sense of completion or resolution and maybe some breathing space, as the Moon comes back to the New phase on 21st.

This lively pace though, will likely continue as Mercury returns to forward motion on 4th although he doesn’t move beyond his retrograde degree until the 23rd. This release of energy should help with getting on top of all the connections, correspondence and everyday tasks that have built up. Mars in Virgo has also been retrograde since mid January and this will have stalled or thwarted putting plans into action. He turns direct once more on 14th and will pick up momentum gradually into June. Some of that frustrated energy might break loose around that time so just be aware of any potential flash points.

In the background but adding to the mix in keeping the pressure on, we see Venus move into excitable Gemini on the 3rd. Venus loves to be around others, charming and beguiling, partying and indulging, she is our most sociable planet. Mercury ruled Gemini is the sign most strongly associated with fast paced ideas, communications and changeability. Venus here is a social butterfly, making connections and passing information around, not lingering to contemplate, just enthusiastically rushing on to the next new thing. She stays in this sign for a lengthy four months and also makes her rare occultation of the Sun in mid Gemini on June 6th.

Social networking is going to be a big theme during these next months, whether its through internet media or good old fashioned social gatherings. There is a need for people to talk and exchange views. The issues that pull people together into like minded groups have to be shared and common values will need to be discussed. When messenger Mercury conjuncts with innovative Uranus in feisty Aries on 22nd we can expect some mental sparks to fly. He then makes a challenging angle to transformative Pluto on 25th. Don’t be surprised to find yourself thinking surprising new thoughts and don’t be too shocked if you find out some things are not the way you thought they were. The planets are telling us to keep up. We’re going through rapid changes and we need to adapt our thinking to match the new situation or we risk being left behind, wondering “what happened?”

The next Full Moon is at 18° Libra on the 6th April at 8:19pm and the New Moon is at 2° Taurus on the 21st at 8.20am