What Next?: Mars Retrograde in Aries 2020
On Wednesday, September 9th 2020, Mars will station Retrograde at 28 degrees of its home sign Aries. It will be square Saturn in Capricorn, causing confusions and delays to our goals. Here's what to expect, both in general and for your sign, before it stations Direct on November 13th.
On Wednesday, September 9th, Mars, the planet of war & drive, will station retrograde at 28'08 degrees of its home sign, Aries. It will continue it's backwards journey for about 2 months before stationing direct on November 13th at 15'13 degrees of the sign. Here's what to expect, both in general and for your sign.
What does it mean for Mars to be Retrograde?
A retrograde planet is one that appears to be moving in the opposite direction. Astrologically, this means that the energies of the planet are directed backwards or inward.
Retrograde periods are often said to be riddled with delays and disruption, but they don't have to be. These periods are not so much a time for action as they are for reflection. Retrograde periods are often loaded with synchronicity and karma. So, they can also be periods of magic and manifestation if you just focus on within rather than without. Things from the past will return to us. This could be people from our past, including from our past lives, situations or memories that we thought we had forgotten about, or maybe just lessons that we're getting a second chance at learning after having failed the first time.
You may have already heard of Mercury in Retrograde, when communication goes haywire, or maybe even Venus in Retrograde, when our relationships are put into question, but what does it mean for Mars to be in retrograde?
For starters, Mars is the rarest of retrogrades, occurring once about every two years, and lasting about 80 days. While Mercury Rx affects communication and Venus Rx affects love & beauty, Mars is the planet of action and drive. Martial energy is about going after what you want, making decisions and getting things done. But when Mars goes Retrograde, these things become tough. Our plans may be put on a back-burner or we may not even be sure of what we want. It's a time to pause, reflect and re-examine how we go about getting the things we desire, and why do we desire them in the first place. Extra time is needed to prepare for our plans and make sure we have everything in order before we make any major decisions.
There may also be issues pertaining to sexuality or anger management. If we've been suppressing any rage, for example, there's a possibility we may explode now. Certain issues we've been avoiding may be brought to our attention, forcing us to deal with them. We're re-examining the way we express and deal with our passions, whether that be anger or desire.
Mars Retrograde in Aries
Mars has been in the direct and confrontational sign of Aries since June 27th, after a 6 week journey through the compassionate and empathetic sign of Pisces. While Mars was in Pisces, we may have gone with the flow, entrusting the universe to give us what we want and allowing things to unfold naturally. Its possible we may have even sacrificed our desires for the greater good. But with Mars in Aries, we no longer have the patient to sit around & wait. We want what we want and we want it now, even if it means we have to fight for it.
In the United States (where I live), we saw this energy play out with many people taking it to the streets and demanding for racial justice, after the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. Some are even calling for the total abolition of the police and prisons, while others have been taking it to the streets to protest economic restrictions as a result of the corona-virus pandemic. While Mars in Aries has likely affected other parts of the world just as strongly, it is worth noting that Mars is square the United States' Sun in Cancer, triggering unrest as the dark history of our nations character has become harder & harder to ignore. Mars in Aries has also been square the Saturn-Pluto-Jupiter in Capricorn, making people all over the world particularly fed up and angry with authoritarian institutions.
But back to the basics, Mars is domicile in Aries, meaning that its at home and at its strongest when placed in this cardinal fire sign. Aries, the Ram, is commonly seen as the first sign of the zodiac and known for its trailblazing spirit. On a personal level, Mars in Aries is bold, courageous, brave & decisive, jumping headfirst into any endeavor. But an Aries Mars can also be impulsive and prone to getting into trouble. Those born with this placement in their natal chart are often athletes & daredevils. They are less about talk and more about action. We may all find ourselves exhibiting this energy throughout its transit, butting heads with each other like rams do.
When Mars goes Retrograde, however, that fast-paced energy will slow down a bit. While righteous anger remains, it's possible that in our personal lives, we may find ourselves getting into fights for the wrong reasons. More likely, however, our plans are at a standstill. While we have a clearer idea of what we want, we may have trouble knowing how to get started. This is true both in our personal lives and on a collective scale. With so much still uncertain, in the wake of this pandemic, governments are having trouble deciding when & how to open up their economy, schools are trying to figure out the best way to implement their re-opening plans, and businesses are struggling to pick themselves off the ground. Aries Mars does things at a fast pace and Aries Mars Retrograde is when we'll start to see the harsh consequences of opening up too soon. On the bright side, as always, retrograde periods are good for reflection & Mars Retrograde, in particular, is a good time for getting in touch with what we really care about. What is it that really drives and motivates us? What is the root of our passion? If we had any doubts about the path we were on, Mars Retrograde will help us get into the root of why so either we can move past any hurdles & fix it, or move on to something else altogether.
Mars Retrograde in Aries 2020: Aspects
Mars' most significant aspect (which will be exact on September 28th) is it's square to Saturn in Capricorn at 25 degrees, also in it's domicile or home sign. Saturn rules over rules, restrictions, limitations and structure, as well as blockages or delays. We may feel extra willful during this transit but unable to achieve what we desire. It may feel like some external force is getting in the way, possibly prohibiting us from taking any action towards our goals. In the sign of Capricorn, Saturn could indicate authoritarian measures, preventing us from going after what we want. This makes 2020's Mars Retrograde a particularly difficult retrograde period.
Mars will also be square Pluto at 22 degrees Capricorn (exact on October 9th) indicating that all though our anger is blocked, it is intensified. Historically, Mars has made hard aspects to Pluto (and Saturn) during times of war, such as when World War 1 began (Mars in Libra was square Pluto in Cancer & Saturn by extension) as well as World War 2 (Mars in Aquarius was opposite Pluto in Leo). Essentially, this aspect can indicate division, competition & power struggles and at it's worst, an all-out fight to the death. On the bright side, it can also indicate great sex, especially if you're into kinky stuff?? (or maybe that's just wishful thinking).
Mars will eventually square Jupiter in Capricorn, as well, on October 19th, indicating an expansion in aggression & feelings of anger (& potentially incidents surrounding fire!) but we may also find ourselves on over-drive. We may find ourselves over-working, over-doing and over-reacting, or our governments may be doing this.
The day of it's station direct, Mars will also be trine the South Node at 25'09 degrees Sagittarius. This is a time for shedding karma, and working out unresolved issues. We may come face to face with an enemy from our past, or perhaps a male figure in our life will seek out reconciliation. We should not let anyone back into our lives who are not healthy for us, but it can be helpful to have some final closure or a heart to heart before moving on, or in some cases, depending upon what the situations like, it may be a misunderstanding and the beginnings of a true connection or friendship. If we try to make amends for our wrong-doings, we may find it very rewarding. If we've behaved badly, cruelly or inconsiderate towards others, now is the time to rectify it. It's possible we may even find ourselves on the other side of a situation we caused in the past.
Mars' station Retrograde on September 9th will coincide with the Sun in Virgo's opposition to Neptune Retrograde at 19'35 degrees Pisces. This indicates a conflict between fantasy and reality, and this Mars Retrograde period may force many of us to come face-to-face with our delusions of grandeur. It may force us to come to terms with any issue we've been avoiding. As much as we'd like to be self-aware in theory, acknowledging our flaws can sometimes do a disservice to our self-esteem, but at the same time, if we don't acknowledge it, we'll never get the chance to grow. And with the Sun in an even more exact trine to Jupiter Retrograde at 17'25 degrees Capricorn, this Mars Retrograde period is all about growth. We're learning more about ourselves and how to become better people.
Lastly, it's worth noting that on September 24th, Mars will be making an opposition to Mercury at 26 degrees Libra, indicating an exchange of harsh words, potentially between you and someone you care about or in an effort to achieve equilibrium of some kind. Luckily, Mars will be making a trine to Venus at 25 degrees Leo soon after, on September 28th. This is a good day for love, passion & partnership. It's also a good date to reconcile with or make amends to anyone who you've had a falling out with. On October 13th, Mercury will be joining Mars, stationing Retrograde at 11 degrees Scorpio, while the Sun at 21 degrees Libra makes an opposition to Mars in Aries. This can indicate communication problems due to competitiveness & a conflict of egos.
Mars in Aries Direct
Mars will finally station direct during on November 13th at 15'13 degrees Aries. At this point, things should finally move forward. We should feel more freer and sure of ourselves. Things should carry on as normal, and we should be more confident about getting the things we want.
It is worth noting, however, that Mars will be (widely) opposite Venus at 20'42 degrees Libra, it's home sign, suggesting a certain degree of tension in our relationships, particularly our love situation. There may be lots of back and forth or push-pull but passions run high, and with the two cosmic lovers in their home sign, this could indicate a spiritual marriage or a balancing of our feminine and masculine sides. For those who believe in it, I suppose it could also represent two soulmates coming together after a long separation period.
On that day, we will also have a conjunction between Mercury & the Moon at 3'34 & 5'14 degrees Scorpio, Mars' other ruling sign. This suggests that our minds and our hearts are in sync with each other. Our thoughts & feelings are aligned. We're able to dig deep and get to the core root of what we need, making us more conscious than ever of what we really care about. We're easily able to express ourselves & what we need or feel, as well, no matter how intense it may seem to others. However, Mercury & the Moon will be opposite Uranus still Retrograde at 8'08 degrees Taurus, Venus' other ruling sign, suggesting that there is still an element of shock or surprise, spontaneity or unpredictable. The Sun will also be in Scorpio, at 22'25 degrees trine Neptune at 18'12 degrees of its modern home of Scorpio suggesting a heightened sense of spirituality and a feeling of oneness with the universe. This may be what helps our minds and our emotions line up with each other.
Mars will be making trine to the South Node at 20'08 degrees, Sagittarius, suggesting karma is being resolved but lastly, Mars will once again be making squares to Pluto, Jupiter & Saturn, repeating previous themes of stress, competition and increased anger, but this time, we'll have a better idea of how to handle it.
Now it's time to see how it will affect your sign. I suggest reading the horoscope for your ascendant or rising sign, first, instead of the sun. I find the rising sign horoscope to be more accurate than the sun, as these horoscopes are based on the houses. If you don't know your rising sign, click here to generate a birth chart. Yes, you will need your birth time for this. If you don't have your birth time, Sun sign horoscopes are the next best thing.
People with angles or personal planets (or even the North and South Node) between 14 and 29 degrees of the cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn) will most especially be affected by this transit. If you have angles or personal planets between 14 and 29 degrees of the other fire signs, Leo & Sagittarius you may also be heavily affected by this transit.
Aries Rising (or Sun)
With Mars Retrograde in your 1st house, it may be even harder for you to keep a lid on your temper than usual, Aries. However, it may seem like somethings blocking you from expressing it fully, like you're suppressing it in a way that you aren't used to. Saturn/Pluto in your 10th house of career suggests that maybe this is due to a fear of what your boss or employer may think. Normally, you may not be the type of person to care about appealing to authority but when we're in a pandemic and you're in danger of losing your job, it can be a major upset to your self-esteem. Try to make this energy work for you rather than against you: on the bright side it can inspire hard work.
Taurus Rising (or Sun)
This could be an especially difficult period for you, Taurus. You're coming to face to face with yourself & all your flaws and perhaps even undergoing a period of difficult karma. Fated events may be forcing you to reckon with issues from your past, perhaps even things you've long forgotten about. With Mars Rx in the 12th house, a secret may shock you or memories that you yourself have suppressed may come floating back up to the surface, you may find out that you have a hidden enemy or perhaps you're just feeling more paranoid than usual. In any case, the square to Saturn/Pluto in the 9th house shows that you may be making a change to your belief system or you might also be at a crossroads in regards to travel or education plans. By working out unresolved issues, however, you'll find yourself more prepared to go on the adventures you wanted.
Gemini Rising (or Sun)
While known for your flexibility & way of somehow managing to seemingly get along with everybody, you may find yourself getting more irritable with people lately, Gemini. With Mars Rx in the 11th house, you could be getting into lots of arguments and fights, and perhaps this is making you wonder who you're true friends really are. With Saturn/Pluto in the 8th house, this could very well spell out the "death" of some friendships that are no longer serving you, but on the bright side, you might feel more driven than ever to fight on behalf of your community, helping to transform it into something more equitable and just.
Cancer Rising (or Sun)
You may be feeling over-worked, Cancer. With Mars Rx in the 10th house, it's possible you've had some unpleasant experiences as work that are making you wonder if this job is even worth it. Saturn/Pluto in your 7th house shows me that your frustration with your career may very well have something to do with the personalities of your co-workers or perhaps your clients or boss. My advice is: don't let them get to you. Keep on doing what you love. Mars rules your 5th house, after all - it's time for reflecting on the things that bring you joy. If it doesn't, you don't need it.
Leo Rising (or Sun)
You are a passionate person, Leo, known for your great conviction. With Mars Rx in your 9th house, arguments about differing belief systems may wind up going too far. Since the 9th house rules over travel, you may feel tempted to run away from your problems rather than dealing with them. With Saturn/Pluto in your 6th house, it's possible that travel or education plans may change due to anxiety about your health, a lack of organization or full-on health problems. With Mars ruling your 4th house as well, it could also be that family or personal issues are holding you back. Try to live in the moment and not let the little things get to you.
Virgo Rising (or Sun)
With Mars Rx in your 8th house, this may be a particularly difficult time for you, Virgo. The 8th house is traditionally known as "the house of death," and while this death is more often metaphorical than literal, you may have had to come to terms with the loss of something important to you. For instance, this could have been a break up, or a job you really liked. With Saturn-Pluto in your 5th house, this was likely something or someone you really loved or cared about. Try to see this as a new beginning rather than an end. Good things come to those who remain positive.
Libra Rising (or Sun)
Whether romance or simply friendship, relationships are known to be quite important to you, Libra. But with Mars Rx in your 7th house, you may feel fed up with your love or social life. If in a relationship, your partner may be getting on your nerves and if single, it may feel like you're never able to find the right person. It's also possible that an ex may try to make amends with you but this person may or may not be worth letting back into your life. Saturn/Pluto in the 4th house suggests that arguments with family members may be especially rough or perhaps issues with your family (whether conscious or unconscious) may somehow be causing issues with some of the other people you love. Reflect on what you really care about, Libra, and pick your battles wisely.
Scorpio Rising (or Sun)
Unfortunately, this may be a particular challenging time for you, Scorpio. Your ruling planet Mars is Rx in the 6th house, which can indicate problems with your health. This may seem especially alarming when we're in the middle of a pandemic. However, with Saturn/Pluto in your 3rd house, these problems could be more mental than physical. Too much working and running around could be stressing you out. In fact, Aries rules the head so I would particularly careful about headaches or migraines. If you know your triggers, I would make an effort to avoid them ahead of them and focus on the things that you know will help you relax. I would also avoid public transportation or any short travels in as much as you can.
Sagittarius Rising (or Sun)
With Mars Rx in your 5th house of fun & creativity, engaging in any kind of reckless forms of recreation or pleasure may be particularly dangerous for you at this time. Like Aries, you can be a bit of a daredevil at times, Sagittarius, as you enjoy taking risks. Impulsivity in regards to your dating life may also be a problem, but Saturn/Pluto in the 2nd house suggests these risks are likely monetary. The 5th house does rule gambling, after all. But there are plenty of ways to have fun that don't involve spending money.
Capricorn Rising (or Sun)
You're used to being out in the world, Capricorn, working hard to achieve the things you want, but for many of you, this pandemic has forced many of you to stay working from home. Many of you are not used to this, and with Mars Rx in your 4th house, being at home could be particularly irksome. You may find yourself butting heads with the people you live with and getting into arguments. Saturn/Pluto are in your 1st house which suggests this may be the result of power struggles or ego battles. If your living situation is uncomfortable, now is a good time to make changes, but it is also a good time to clean house within. It's a good time to make amends with your past and come to terms with any family issues that have been preventing you from being your best self.
Aquarius Rising (or Sun)
As an Aquarius, you love to socialize and exchange ideas with other people, but with Mars Rx in the 3rd house, you may find that your communication with others has been poor. Perhaps you've been getting into arguments with people or scaring others off with your blunt demeanor. With Saturn/Pluto in your 12th, this could be a result of unresolved issues in your subconscious. As driven you are to put yourself out there, it may due good to spend some time alone to get in touch with that. If you've been planning a trip (especially by bus, car or train) it's possible that outside forces may delay that from happening of if you were engaging in any sort of communication or writing project, you may feel unmotivated. Arguments with siblings are also a possibility. But don't worry; once you've discovered the source of the issue, things should get back on track.
Pisces Rising (or Sun)
Mars Rx in your 2nd house could indicate issues with money. A lack of finances may prevent you from taking any action at this time. You may be struggling to afford the things you need to further your goals or make your wishes come true. With Saturn/Pluto in the 11th house of friends, financial struggles could even be hindering your social life or in contrast, you may be spending so much money on going out with friends that you're left with nothing. Try not to let this bring you down, Pisces. Now is the time for prioritizing what things in life have the most worth. You're figuring out your priorities: what is it that you value most?
While Aries Mars is aggressive and driven, when it goes Retrograde, we may feel unsure of ourselves and facing plenty of setbacks. Much of our anger may be turned inward. These setbacks are further increased by Mars square to Saturn in Capricorn. While Mars square to Jupiter & Pluto shows an increase in our desire to go after what we want, it also shows an increase in conflict, and the square to Saturn shows that outside forces - most likely (but not necessarily) authority or some sort of bureaucracy when in Capricorn - are delaying us from actually having it. These next two months are best used for planning and making sure we're actually prepared for the goals we've set. It's a good time for discerning our motivations as well because it's quite possible we're chasing after something for the wrong reasons. In any case, things should be set back into motion on November 13th when Mars goes Direct. Things should be back into balance.
About the author
My name’s Kait. I would define myself mainly as a truth seeker. I write about a lot of things, primarily astrology, religion & spirituality, relationships and social issues.