If you know the artist of this wonderful piece please let me know!  As Mars (planet of action) pirouettes through the sky and prepares to turn retrograde on September 9th, it has already formed a challenging square to Jupiter (ideological conflict) and Pluto (power conflict). Today it makes the first of a series of squares to Saturn (repression and conflict). Interactions between Mars and Saturn are often described as the attempt to drive with the brakes on, but of course we already have that kind of scenario with so many retrograde planets this summer (retrograde planets appear to be moving backwards from our vantage point on Earth).

The dance between Mars and the three Capricorn planets as they retrograde and turn direct is an interesting one. In this first phase of Mars challenging Saturn and Pluto, Mars is in direct (regular forward) motion and Saturn and Pluto are retrograde. In the second phase on September 29, Mars will be retrograde and Saturn direct. At the third phase, the conclusion, they will both be direct. So at this first phase there is the desire for action and the will to exert influence blocked by Saturn which in retrograde motion is reflecting on the past and turning our attention to the rear view mirror.  Mars says, “Why can’t I do this thing I want?” and Saturn replies “I am the ghost of the past,  [apologies to Charles Dickens] look at why you can’t have this right now.  Meanwhile Pluto is overseeing all of the drama and directing the action so that the Will of the Higher Self can be executed properly with the right action taking place.

In the second phase at the end of September with Mars retrograde and Saturn direct, Mars is looking backwards, perhaps with resentment and anger at past failures.  Saturn is direct, looking ahead, and encouraging persistence and consistency in order to achieve the desires represented by Mars.  During this phase we will need to leave our bitterness behind and continue our disciplined practice of hard work and focus so that we can eventually manifest our desires into reality.

The final phase in mid-January 2021 takes place with both Mars and Saturn both direct, having advanced to the next sign in the zodiac. Mars will have moved into Taurus where the fuse of frustration is longer, and Saturn will be in Aquarius.  This begins a new phase in which Saturn in Aquarius adds a visionary aspect to the Mars/Saturn dance, with Mars in Taurus much more able to be patient and persistent in order to achieve its goals.  Meanwhile, Pluto will remain in Capricorn to clean up any leftover karma which was not carried into the phase shift as we learn what we can take with us, and what we must leave behind.

Dates of the dance

8/13/20  Mars direct squares Pluto retrograde
8/24/20  Mars direct squares Saturn retrograde
8/29/20  Mars retrograde squares Saturn direct
10/9/20  Mars retrograde squares Pluto direct
12/23/20  Mars direct squares Pluto direct
1/13/21  Mars direct squares Saturn direct

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