Life is pure flame, and we live by an invisible sun within us. Thomas Browne
What is to give light must endure burning. Viktor Frankl
Hide not your talents, they for use were made. What's a sundial in the shade? Benjamin Franklin
Be glad of life because it gives you a chance to love and to work and to play and to look up at stars. Henry Van Dyke
The beauty of the world and the orderly arrangement of everything celestial makes us confess that there is an excellent and eternal nature, which ought to be worshipped and admired by all mankind. Marcus Tullius Cicero
Are we having fun yet? Modern Saying
Are we there yet? Modern Saying
We may have all come on different ships, but we're in the same boat now. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Mars, that planet of ambition, assertion, competition, drive, sexuality, raw ego and courage, is about to go retrograde (appearing to go backwards through the zodiac). Happening only every two years and two months, we are generally used to the energy of Mars marching forward, taking on challenges and reacting as Mars tends to do; self-directed, with forward drive, taking on opponents and being generally antsy. In Leo, Mars is going retrograde 5 days before Christmas; on December 20 and will stay retrograde until March 10 2010.
Mars retrograde in Leo gives the impression of a warrior giving in or giving up; he has not quite laid down his sword, but he's feeling in need of a rest, to take things a bit more slowly, to give more time and energy to recuperation, finding his center, finding his feet again - to feel potent and not impotent, useful and not worn out, attractive and not unattractive (in any sense of the word). Perhaps he needs a long shower and some psychotherapy? :)
Mars is hanging out in Leo for a very long time - from mid October 2009 to the second week of June 2010. That's a lot of action going on in Leo and if you have planets in Leo, you'll be feeling it rather strongly. Also, if you have planets in Taurus, Scorpio or Aquarius, you are likely to be pushed or tested or spurred on in some way.
Speaking of being spurred on, we all may feel under a lot of pressure with this Mars retrograde but feel that we can't really achieve much in the way of actual results. It's probably necessary to go over old ground, to sort through what's happened in the last few years, to check out where you've succeeded or pushed through opposition and where you've folded or given in. Now, it seems, we are given a second chance to sort through our objectives, aims and reasons for being. Mars is very much directed by Venus and Venus is trine (a good, free flowing aspect) Mars at the time of Mars going retrograde on Sagittarius 24: The Bluebird of Happiness at the Gate of the Cottage. This is a good thing as Venus is saying we should invite happiness (and luck) into our lives, but we may still find ourselves a bit unmoored and not sure where our next step is going to take us. This is largely because Mars, right up until the actual retrograde, is on Leo 19: A Houseboat Party Crowded With Revelers; The Water Reflects Its Lights. This is a great degree for partying, getting out with friends, being mobile, social pleasures and joining with others in an adventurous spirit. However, the downside of The Houseboat Party can be a feeling of being unmoored, cast adrift, not able to disembark, not having a solid and secure dock to land on. One can keep partying for sure, or not taking life seriously, but sooner or later one will probably hit a brick wall and find the need for getting "solid" about life; in control, in charge and in demand in areas of life that are truly meaningful instead of rather transitory.
Mars in Leo has been bringing some very interesting things to light. Many have reported extreme difficulties with relationships and partnerships. This has largely come about through Jupiter, for months, being on the degree opposite where Mars is going retrograde. Jupiter was on Aquarius 18: A Man Being Unmasked at a Masquerade in March 2009 and again in September, October and November. For many, there have been realizations about infidelity, issues of control and manipulation and other things that have led many to mistrusting others. There seems to have been a huge spike in things such as Narcissistic Personality Disorders and other psychological issues as Jupiter dredged these things up for people to see (The Man Unmasked at a Masquerade). Again, for many, this has led to people looking at their own behavior in relationships; sorting through what has allowed this kind of thing to show up in their lives. Co-dependent relationships seem to have been more and more in evidence, especially with Uranus on Virgo 24: Mary and Her White Lamb for some months through 2009 (this Symbol speaks about co-dependence, but with Uranus there, issues have been erupting to the surface about it). We are being asked the questions: are we being truly authentic? are those around us being that way? what are our objectives in relationships? are we controlling, pushy, assertive or indifferent, lazy and expecting others to do everything?
Mars, on December 11, moves onto the degree that it goes retrograde on on December 20. The Sabian Symbol is Leo 20: American Indians Perform a Ritual to the Sun. This is a wonderful degree for restoring spirit, rituals and worship, the desire to return to nature, shining through one's life (not necessarily through social credentials), sweat lodges, drum beating, celebrating a unique social heritage, participation with nature's cycles, eclipses, smudging, fire, passion, spontaneity, vision quests, fasting, courage, conquering bad habits and attitudes, the truth of conviction, prayer, baptisms of fire. It can also point to the hypocrisy of religions that exclude a sense of personal direction and responsibility, especially at Christmas.
Mars sits on this degree until the end of December, when, on New Year's Eve, it moves back onto the Houseboat Party. This is great for New Year's celebrations, but it suggests that for us in this new year, we have to find a place to be, to settle, to be most effective, to feel moored, safe, loved, held, respected. Are you dealing with places, jobs and people who are merely transitory or don't have your best interests in their hearts? Do you have your own best interests in your heart?
Mars in Leo wants us to be self directed, focused, enthusiastic and forward thinking. It wants us to have healthy egos, not squashed, not inflated, not retarding, not self negating. Working on seeing our patterns is a great way to celebrate the end of 2009 and move forward in a healthier, freer and more authentic manner!