This message has been brought to you by the current Mars Retrograde in Aries:
“Action also requires rest”
This message has been brought to you by the current Mars Retrograde in Aries:
“Action also requires rest”
Setting aside any potential Toxic Masculinity implications of the term aside, the retrograde of manly Mars through the ultra-masculine sign of Aries would like to have a few words with us on the subject of what a “real man” is and isn’t. Rx♂♈
Being a “Real Man” isn’t dependent upon what does or doesn’t dangle between your legs, the size of such organs, or whether you equate being “brave” with the willingness to take foolish risks. It’s not about beating your (hairy?) chest in a show of bravado, or flexing your biceps until the sleeves of your shirt bust at the seams. Mars retrograding in Aries would like to remind us all that a penis and testicles do not a man make, that emotional cowardice is a real thing, and prompts us to understand that those averse to taking emotional risks often seek to alleviate this hidden internal insecurity caused by a lack of inner strength by overcompensating with more obvious displays of outward might – see the red herring for what it is.
Being a “Real Man” isn’t about dominance – it is about setting an example; *being* that example. A “Real Man” serves as an exemplar of how to “stand up” in all senses of the word (properly and appropriately self-assert/be morally upright/be independent & self-reliant). “He” isn’t afraid to tell other “men” to come correct when “he” sees them acting like an animal or a child. A “Real Man” protects those in need of protection quickly and does not hesitate to be an “army of one” if need be.
Being a “Real Man” isn’t about hiding emotion; it is about being brave enough to show your true face in all ways; always. It is being confident enough in your own strength to support and sustain others. And it is the courage to be as you are and know with certainty that is how you were meant to live. A “Real Man” takes swift, corrective action in his mistakes and possesses enough inner fortitude to apologize when warranted rather than viewing it as it being “weak” to say you’re sorry and seeking instead to “save face”. A “Real Man” puts “his” best foot forward and eschews one-upmanship – “he” understands that there is no need for competition when you are secure in your ability to provide something of substance to the rest of the “pack”. Being a “Real Man” is understanding that being powerful is a state of mind; not how many pounds you can bench press. And lastly, it is an appreciation for the physicality of being alive without that physicality becoming a character handicap that defines your personality.
Thus spake Retrograde Mars in Aries 🔥
Figuratively; not necessarily literally deaf. Mars in Aries is incredibly headstrong; so much so that it often fails to heed good advice or adhere to valid warnings, for example. Add in the fact this placement also tends to relish challenge and it’s almost certainly an invitation for trouble – remember that astrologically speaking, dignified or not Mars is considered a malefic for good reason! What Mars in Aries needs to learn is how to hold up a second and figure out how it instigates conflict by not considering anyone/anything else in the room and acting purely on first impulse, which is usually its own desires.
With Mars in Aries about to retrograde in just a few weeks’ time, one of the most important things we should be asking ourselves now and for the foreseeable future is: “Where/How am I not listening?” Where have we been perhaps ignoring sage advice that subsequently fell upon our own deaf ears, failed to take a different course of action than the straight-line one we normally would, forged recklessly onward at speed against good warnings/common sense, or perhaps failed to restrain our own (possibly angry?) impulses and (re?)actions? Something will likely have to be walked back over the next couple of months. Mars in Aries also tends to be offensive/forceful/aggressive in approach, and if we’ve rode roughshod over others recently this retrograde may amount to a comic order to “stand down”. Especially if we find or have found ourselves in conflict with someone over the past month, there is a good chance this might have arisen because we A) weren’t listening or B) perhaps were being rather selfish; possibly also a combination of the two where maybe we weren’t hearing/didn’t ask what the other party wanted. When someone doesn’t listen to us – repeatedly – the most common response tends to be to jack up the decibel level and start yelling. Note that I am not advocating that raising our voice should be a first-line approach to anything; rather to encourage self-reflection as to what our own responsibility is if we’ve found ourselves being shouted at because we haven’t been listening – “Can you hear me now???”
Personally, my standby is the old “3 Strikes” rule; if I’ve had to say the same thing more than twice because the person in question is intent upon not hearing me despite varying my approach, by the third time I usually either 1) disengage completely and walk away; why throw more energy into it? 2) if disengagement isn’t a viable option – say, the party in question is being pushy about something – I have no qualms about standing up for myself with a marked increase in volume.
Choose your weapon carefully now; it is a fail-safe designed to be utilized only in moments where “flight” is no longer an option. Pray for the wisdom to know when to use it and – more importantly – for restraint in knowing when *not* to. Never draw it in anger and hope it will never have to be unsheathed *period*; all the while pragmatically knowing the world can indeed be a harsh place. In reality if you ever do find yourself with your back against a wall, that (metaphorical) mace on your keychain or knife tucked into your boot can provide strength, steadiness, and safety in circumstances that might otherwise threaten to bring you to your knees.
After 2 months of Retrograde status, Mars resumes Direct motion in the sign of its exaltation (Capricorn) in very short order; 10:05am EDT on Monday August 27, 2018 to be precise. The above is prudent consideration at this juncture and it’s highly likely you already have the requisite armament in question; it may just need to be dusted off a bit.
Recte et fortiter 👍💪
We’ve already spoken of Chiron in Aries and its battle wounds in a previous post, but something unique is happening on this front courtesy of the present Mars retrograde. Mars rules Aries – the sign Chiron is presently traversing through – so that’s one layer of it. But we have an additional level of interconnectedness between these two celestial energies at the moment that is continuing to play out because Mars makes repeated contact to Chiron due The Red Planet’s back-and-forth retrograde motion.
These astrological contacts – which perfect(ed) in alignment on May 20th, August 3rd, & September 13th – are facilitating an opportunity for us to revisit ancient battle wounds/the scene of old skirmishes (in this life and/or those past) to find new opportunities for self-healing; especially if we focus on how we can be or do differently in the Now/going forward. We may not be able to change the past, but we absolutely *can* review any repeated points of conflict or contention in our lives – including any shrapnel wounds we may have sustained way back when – to excavate/excise. It’s not unlike exploratory surgery in a kind of way; we may not know quite what we’re getting into/going to find, but we’re pretty clear on the fact that something weird is going on that will need to be patched up or “sutured” for closure.
As for where to start on this healing journey, begin with things that make you angry. Examine the reaction to anger and explore any possible triggers rooted in past experiences while maintaining a sense of intellectual detachment that keeps it cool enough to handle. This is nothing to fear; in these déjà vu moments bear in mind the potential this energy has for recalibrating healthy self-assertion because there is an opportunity to radically initiate an entirely different way of being/doing. Some are very uncomfortable with this emotion and see it in a negative light as generating static or chaos. But when proactively handled, it can also be a force for change that liberates us from stuck ways of being or doing so we don’t attract chronic injuries that result in the (re-)formation of new scar tissue. There’s only so many time we can go through the same incision point….
Something interesting has been going on since about late May – collectively, it’s like we’re all being asked to confront memories and events from the past (either in this life or perhaps even past lifetimes) to reclaim lost energy. This may occur via current situations/interactions that serve as a memory trigger, or perhaps replaying/revisiting something that elicited a strong emotional reaction within us, and/or it’s also possible some of this past material we’re tackling may be surfacing in our subconscious through dreams. Whatever the case, it’s as if a portal to long ago has opened so we can face and release any “unfinished business”. We’re in the process of reclaiming our power from the Past, and whether it’s a memory from our own history or our soul’s history there is the sense that we’re freeing stuck emotional energy that has been trapped in some bygone era.
Sometimes strong emotional experiences leave an imprint upon the psyche or soul and the resulting residue left behind either 1) gets us nowhere or 2) actively prevents us from moving forward in life. It’s as if a vital part of our energy has been “stolen” from us in a sense, and going back to confront and release those scenarios, interactions, actions, and – in some cases – inactions that left us feeling diminished, weak, or powerless can have a positive impact at this time. There are a variety of techniques one can use to accomplish this; from mundane to spiritual – it’s not so much about the specific method we’re using to achieve these ends, but our willingness to actively engage with the process.
It can be as simple as allowing a memory to transport us back to a place or time and reviewing/addressing deeper feelings that may be unconsciously influencing our Present. If we permit ourselves to temporarily re-live that event or feeling, we can in fact alter the Past; say by consciously affirming how we’re handling things differently in the current moment or asserting how we’ll do things differently moving forward.
It might also look like this: Perhaps we’re engaged in a (contentious?) process of hashing something out with another party and something about that dynamic seems somehow vaguely familiar. Conflict seems to stir up all kinds of weird stuff now, and perhaps this is our prompt to review something that happened to us “way back when” that is actually impacting the Now.
We don’t have to necessarily have a past life regression done (though that’s certainly an option at this time!); we can also sit in meditation and see what comes up for us, pay attention to our dreamscape for clues as to what our subconscious might want addressed, or do some shamanic Journeying either on our own or with the assistance of a trusted and reputable shamanic healer. These types of techniques may be most helpful in situations where something happened to us very young (Think: baby/toddler), where we may have packed an experience away because the emotional impact was so violent that we didn’t *want* to remember it, or when it’s something we have no conscious recall of because it didn’t happen to us in *this* incarnation; rather a past one.
Whatever the case may be, do be particularly aware of any themes that surfaced circa late May and then subsequently culminated around June 7th/8th when Mars made its first exact contact to the South Node. The story is far from over; the other dates we want to pay very close attention to are July 20th when a retrograde Mars revisits this old stomping ground and then Sept 25th/26th when the Red Planet makes final contact with the South Node. During the next couple of months, no matter what is brought up we must remember that our Past does not have to be our Now/Future; we can *be* and *do* differently! There’s definitely an element of “behavior modification” inherent in this astrological alignment; it’s all about how to make our actions less directly informed by habits of/ingrained patterns from the past so we can break free rather than allow them to derail us from our destiny.
Foreigner’s “Urgent”: For those days (like today) when everything seems to be a federal f***ing emergency 😡
Happy? Mars Retrograde, ya’ll – don’t make any rash moves, allow cooler heads to prevail, and diligently monitor any feelings of impatience, irritation, anger, or frustration. We’ve got 2 months of this vibe to ride out, but this energy is strongest for about a week surrounding the days this planet stations; that would be now and then again around August 27th.
We have less than two weeks to go now until Mars stations (AKA pauses and turns) retrograde! Mars stationary retrograde in Aquarius is like an itch you can’t quite scratch that’s driving you, well, crazy. Things chafe at us now but there’s no immediate relief in sight. Speaking of immediate relief: Sexually frustrated? Fuhgettaboutit! It’s like our motors are all revved up but we’re not going anywhere; at least not in a hurry! Mars is super carnal energy – on a symbolic level it’s both the libido of what turns us on and the orgasm of what gets us off. In Aquarius, Mars wants complete freedom of sexual expression – he wants to experiment, do things outside the bounds of normal social convention, innovate, and try novel techniques. But with the retrograde station in the mix, it’s like he’s hung up; caught in some kind of invisible energetic groove like a planetary skipping record.
So don’t freak if your sex drive or life seems to get a little…strange…under these skies. This astro merely represents some kind of “deviation” from whatever our “norm” is; with the aim that by the end of this retrograde period we’ll find a newfound level of freedom outside the confines of self-imposed limitation or denial. With Mars ping-ponging between the signs of Aquarius and Capricorn, there’s a direct relationship between self-denying vs. giving ourselves full unfettered permission to be and to do whatever we want; perhaps even in an act of rebellion. Question all default settings of being and doing now, in *every* sense. Because with this retrograde approaching, there’s a general feeling of inflammation, irritation, or impatience surrounding something we want to be different in our lives. It’s something we’re inclined to want quite badly, however we can’t *quiiiiiite* reach it yet. And it’s just as well, because right now any action we might take toward this end is liable to lead to a premature…release of energy (kundalini or otherwise)…that has unintended consequences. Not necessarily the ones we think, either – metaphorically this energy is not unlike someone who had a vasectomy unexpectedly getting you pregnant; surprise! It could absolutely be something that defies the laws of science/nature/probability. Though this isn’t *always* a bad thing, most of the time we wind up better off if we can avoid doing something crazy in the heat of the moment – this is likely to be one of those times.
With the arrival of June we’re inching incrementally closer to the edge of a major astrological event horizon – Mars is in the process of downshifting as we speak; losing speed but building in power as it prepares for its Retrograde station on June 26th. This was the topic of my recently published June newsletter so I shan’t bore you all by repeating myself here, but one thing I would like us all to keep in mind going forward from this point regards how there’s apt to be a long slow burn perhaps punctuated by intermittent outburst in some area of our life over the next few months as Mars does this prolonged bump-n-grind motion between the area of 09 degrees Aquarius and 28 degrees Capricorn.
Even if you don’t have planets or points located in this particular vicinity of the zodiac, look to see what astrological House(s) in your chart will be affected by this passage. This energy is both frictional and invigorating, though it may not feel like it at first – Mars is the desire planet and when it retrogrades we’re challenged to get in touch on a deep visceral level with what we want out of life or our raison d’être. This can then lead us to take inspired action, but note the entire retrograde period as a whole (late June – late August) is best used as an incubation period. Stoke the internal fires and tend them consciously and carefully, but do not rush into action just yet; our desires are still in the process of more fully unfolding during this time so may wind up altering significantly. It is a waste of energy to change tack two or three times and there is an economy of movement being conveyed by this energy, so definitely take your time before pulling the trigger on something.
I still think Al Pacino in The Devil’s Advocate has this vibe down perfectly – this line is quintessential Mars stationary direct in Scorpio:
“You sharpen the human appetite to the point where it can split atoms with its desire..”
But what if what you’ve got is an Appetite for (self?)Destruction?
With Mars stationing direct in Scorpio, desire is at its most potent. All sorts of primal impulses may surface that can run the gamut from murderous, to carnal, to a strong urge for personal transformation where all the dross associated with our Lowest Self is burned off so we can be reborn.
When Mars turns direct in Scorpio, we find out just how much control (or lack thereof) we have over The Beast within. Our “demons” are apt to rear up on us. Vices can lead us down a proverbial trail to Sodom and Gomorrah. Anger may boil over into a rage and explode disastrously. We may become extremely impatient and libel to make premature moves that prove devastating – especially if we’re not clear about our possible subconscious motives.
Or, we conquer those demons and show ‘em who’s boss. We wrestle with our vices and win. We emerge victorious over destructive anger. We become the master of our psyches, confronting and illuminating even our most hidden or dysfunctional motivations so we act from a place of integrity that is in alignment with our Highest Good.
If you’re wondering where the middle ground is in all these possible expressions, there really isn’t any – Scorpio is first and foremost a sign of extremes. Remember this for the next several days as the Mars Mojo really rouses, and know that from today we have exactly 34 days to redirect this energy toward its most constructive potential as Mars will leave Scorpio on August 2nd. So are you going to wield this power, or let it enslave you? The choice is yours.