The big news this week is Mars Retrograde, in Aquarius, which began yesterday, June 26 and continues until August 27. Those of us tuned into astro-activity—and I’m assuming most reading this column are—have been feeling its effect for the last ten days, so much so that a few people have asked if we were under the influence of Mercury Retrograde. The quick answer: No. Mercury Retrograde begins on July 26, which means there’s still time to back up those hard drives and make duplicates of important documents.
Mars Retrograde has its own distinct signature, and this Mars Retrograde is complex for several reasons:
From a completely commonsense perspective, Mars is a forward-moving, straight-shooting, dynamic force that doesn’t much like to dwell on the past—reviewing and reflecting are not its strong suits and because of that, its retrogrades tend to be cranky…really, really, cranky. So make a mental note to make kindness a priority even when you are disagreeing with someone. It may not have an immediate effect, but if we are going to make it through this protracted moment in time and space, we are going to have to figure out how to live with each other even when we don’t want to.
Mars begins its retrospective in a conjunction with the North Node, a less-than-perfect union because it feeds fractious interactions, both individual and collective. Aquarius is a Fixed Sign, and when you couple that innate need to entrench with a configuration that indicates an inability to adapt or adjust, everyone is likely to dig in and no one is going to feel much like compromising about anything. I’m not suggesting that kindness is capitulation, but seeking compassionate compromise is a good place to start.
But that’s not all. From a collective perspective, this Mars/North Node conjunction indicates dissonance among groups of people. And this is where it gets tricky, because probably the only thing we know for sure about the summer of 2018 is that it’s the antithesis of the Summer of Love. Now is the summer of our discontent, and most, if not all, of us are going to be wrestling with a stubborn resistance to change, our own or others’, and that pigheadedness is going to show itself on both sides of the great political/social/economic/racial/gender/cultural divide, and not just in America—all around Planet Earth, which is doing its best to survive our abuses, including how we treat our fellow humans and every other species on the planet.
Because Mars signifies action, its retrograde is going to feed frustration unless and until you can figure out where your voice can make a difference. On a positive note, there’s an advertising campaign aimed at empowering everyone to participate in public discourse. It’s a creative message aimed at unity and it’s worth a look. It’s only $10 to participate.creators.kickstarter.com/forfreedoms
On a non-Martian note, we are two weeks plus away from a solar eclipse that occurs opposite Pluto. Some of you may remember that I don’t think eclipses indicate anything good—and I am sticking by that statement. Eclipses reveal what’s lurking in the shadows, and this next eclipse takes place in Cancer, the Sign where we long to belong. Cancer is also about issues of safety and security, as well as mothers and their children. What’s more, the eclipse takes place opposite Pluto, which symbolizes death and rebirth. One indication of the power of this eclipse is the situation occurring at the borders of the United States of America where children—including babies and toddlers—are being taken away from their mothers and fathers. Anticipate this eclipse to reveal even more egregious behavior on the part of the Trump regime to abuse those seeking asylum in a country that used to represent freedom for all. But let’s also not forget that children everywhere on this planet are suffering from equally egregious conditions. If we want a future for the planet, we need to create a planet that nurtures its young. Otherwise, we will just become the planet of the broken hearted.
The King of Cruelty and his Gang of Hungry Ghosts have launched a premeditated campaign to discourage civil discourse. Don’t be fooled into thinking that because the King is mad he is without a plan. And also don’t forget the United States’ Pluto Return underlies all that’s taking place and will continue to take place over the next several years. From my perspective that Pluto Return indicates a second American Revolution.
My father, who some of you might remember was a Communist organizer for the National Maritime Union (way back in the golden days of yesteryear) and who was blacklisted and chased by the FBI during the McCarthy era, had a favorite ditty: “The working class can kiss my ass…I’ve got the bosses job at last.” He repeated it so often, I still remember it even though I haven’t heard it in years. He was quite astute in his political observations and believed that one of the deepest forms of capitalist corruption was the way the hierarchy of corporate structures positioned workers against one another. He was right. And that structure is one of the reasons capitalism endures—it successfully exploits our differences and pits us against each other, and as long as we are identified with what divides rather than what unites, we can be exploited. That’s the core of the mad King’s doctrine: divide…divide…divide, which is why the Left must start thinking about how to unify. Whether the Left has leaders that can do that—penetrate to the issues that unite—is dependent upon their ability to hold a truly bold vision that is inclusive. No exceptions.
As the summer unfolds, Mars will revisit many of the events and circumstances of the last six weeks. As you reflect on what’s transpired, also contemplate what you can do to bolster your confidence that positive change is possible. For some, that might simply mean finding a way to help others in a consistent manner—volunteering in any number of ways that make a difference. For others, political action may be the key. For even more, taking a civics course could provide useful information and inspire participation in your community.
I refuse to live under the oppression of either Sauron or Saruman, and even though Gandalf is still MIA, I refuse to despair that the orcs are going to rule forever. The King of Cruelty and his Gang of Hungry Ghosts have done their best to obscure hope—and don’t think for a moment that taking babies away from their mothers was an unintentional policy that just happened to cause waves of despair. But those committed to personal and planetary transformation must persist. Every despairing heart is a casualty of Trump’s Draconian vision, so find healthy ways to fortify your fire and sustain your heart. Identify what unites you with others, again, even if you don’t think it’s possible to share one iota of your life with those you hate and then figure out how to use that sense of unity for the greater good. Consciousness and awareness of our interconnectedness is ultimately the way the world will shift—it has to this time because the planet really does hang in the balance. And although it may be a long struggle, we will prevail.