Everything That You Ever Wanted to Know About Mars Retrograde

by Lynn Koiner, PMAFA

This article was written many years ago but it is very relevant. The examples are older but I have tried to add some updates.


All of the planets, except for the Sun and Moon, which are not actual planets, have a period of retrogradation when they “appear” to move backward in the sky. Mercury turns retrograde when it is about 14 degrees ahead of the Sun and it is retrograde for 3 weeks 3 times each year. The other planets turn retrograde when they are on the opposite side of the zodiac from the Sun. Often, a planet forming a trine to the Sun will also be retrograde. Mars is retrograde for slightly less than 2 2 months every 2 years. When a planet is retrograde, it does not work in its normal manner. One frequently needs to make changes or to work on an inner, psychological level before the planet can express itself outwardly.

From APRIL 17 through JUNE 29 2016, the planet Mars will be in retrograde motion. This period is inappropriate for activities requiring the normal flow of Mars initiative. Using the constructive aspects of this transit, it is an excellent time to reinforce some aspect of our lives. This will be shown by the House position of the transit.

  • In the 1st House, it is a time to work on one’s self-image with courses or activities that bestow confidence and courage.
  • In the 2nd House, it is a time to make corrections or repairs in your financial situation. It should be a time of paying off debts and not a time for spending.
  • In the 3rd House, it is a good time to end those subscriptions for magazines that you do not read. It is a good time for catching up on reading and studies— like those astrology books that you bought two years ago but never read. This house rules transportation so it might be a good time to have those squeaky brakes fixed on your car… or, at least, have an annual tune-up.
  • In the 4th House, it is a good time to make repairs around the house and to reinforce its safety by replacing your smoke detector batteries. Activities may go on in your personal environment of which you are not readily aware.
  • In the 5th House, it is a good time to be a spectator— take the kids to an amusement park (vent their pent up energy), give yourself some relaxation time at the movies or with some home videos, watch someone else get killed on the football field.
  • In the 6th House, reinforce your diet. Add nutrients that benefit the kidney-adrenal (adrenal supplement or Chinese energy herbs) and the iron content of the blood.
  • In the 7th House, work on repressed anger and resentment issues in your relationships. Do not get into a fight— talk it out!
  • In the 8th House, reinforce 8th House issues. If your house is insured for its 1970 value, bring it up-to-date. Pay off those credit cards. Curb any tendencies toward obsessive-compulsive behavior or action. It will only get you into trouble1. I had surgery during the 1988 Mars retrograde in which my foot was RE-ATTACHED. The doctor felt it was the best surgery of his career!
  • In the 9th House, it is a good time to study comparative philosophies. This would include history— studying the past to understand the present.
  • In the 10th House, this is a good time to find out why activities in your business are not working and then reinforce the structures. If and where you are losing business, assess the problem. I traveled to Eastern Europe to visit astrologers.
  • In the 11th House, it might be a better time to do things alone and not drain yourself through the energy of groups. Psychologically, it is a good time to assess if your current goals are really contributing to your happiness index!
  • In the 12th House, solitude is beneficial. Meditation puts you in touch with your inner self.


When Mars is retrograde, it depletes the vitality so that it is never a time to initiate. Whoever initiates loses— a new project, a great love, an argument, a lawsuit, or an international war. With a new project, it will fizzle out and never really go anywhere. With a hot romance, it too fizzles and it rarely gets to the altar. With an argument, the hostility will come back to haunt you later. In legal matters, stoke your opponent into initiating the lawsuit first. It will be etched in granite that they will lose. In an international war, whoever fires first will automatically lose or ultimately withdraw.

Matters commenced while Mars is retrograde will be frustrated and plagued with disruptions until they finally fizzle out. At this time, people become irritated when activities do not run smoothly. The anger may disrupt indirectly and inappropriately— like getting a traffic ticket when you feel annoyed with your job.

During this cycle, never buy anything mechanical unless it is heavily insured! Office machinery and computers easily break down. A friend who owned a word processing service found this period to be a disaster. During one retrograde cycle, the printer, the back-up printer and the rented printer all failed to work. When they finally got one that worked, the mailing labels printed— but there was no ink! I often notice that the world needs a brake job when Mars is retrograde. In 1995, I discovered a water leak in my new car. Fortunately, this was covered by the warranty. Anything mechanical that is hanging on by a thread will likely break down during this cycle. Get those unstable devices repaired in advance— don’t wait until you have a breakdown disaster! My mother even ordered a small treadmill for exercise. We realized as soon as she got it out of the box that she would never be able to use it. Since we could not get it back in the box, we just trashed it.

Those who have Aries or Scorpio strong in their horoscopes are dramatically affected by this shift in direction of their ruler. For Arians, they find themselves being less aggressive, less pushy and less impatient to have THEIR WAY in a situation. For Scorpios, they find that they are less concerned about being in control, controlling an immediate situation and, of course, running matters THEIR WAY. Both Mars-ruled types find themselves more inclined to sit back and review matters in a more detached or impersonal way. They feel more patient to wait on circumstances to unfold before they take action. These individuals, however, may not recognize the anger they feel inside. They may express an unusual passiveness while under fire because they need too much processing time before they can retaliate. Only when Mars turns direct can they move the Mars energy forward.

For those who are NOT ruled by Mars, it may feel quite differently. They may feel more impatient to force matters to a conclusion, to get a project going or to take immediate action. This would be an unwise course of action! Look to the House-position of your natal Mars to see where you might become impatient and act pre-maturely. Remember, initiating or impulsively taking action will not work to your favor.

In GOOD DAYS ACTION PLANNING GUIDE, Mary Shea describes an ideal way to handle Mars retrograde. She states that, “there is a tendency to be more reserved (when Mars is retrograde). Your hesitation causes you to review your behavior in the past and look for new way of responding in the future.” She feels that this is the way we learn to perfect our responses. “You go back over situations (either in your mind or in reality), doing things again and again while making corrections in the way you handle events. While Mars is retrograde, you will be reviewing the way you handle anger, self-defense, self-motivation and sexual relationships, outward anger or conflicts may not be appropriate.”

She rightfully feels that using passive-aggressive techniques, manipulation, arbitration or subtle power plays may be more appropriate at this time. “If you are normally non-assertive, you have be forced to defend yourself. Whatever your tactics, you must give thought to what you are doing. If your tactics do not work or they are inappropriate to the situation, your anger will continue to build while Mars is retrograde. You can expect the anger to manifest full-blown by the time Mars turns direct. If you have seriously wronged or angered another with…acts of aggression, you can expect the backlash as Mars turns direct.”

When writing on Mars in 1995, my first observation was its effect upon men in general. There masculinity seemed more easily threatened, manifesting mood displays and they often needed reassurance. I personally felt “organizationally impaired.” As hard as I tried to organize my work, the more disorganized I became. I was overwhelmed by all of the data that has been submitted for the political articles and I seemed to be doing a lot of wheel spinning. This is unusual and it began when Mars turned retrograde. This seemed worse while Mars was in Virgo— for the male ego and my disorganization. I felt some improvement when Mars retrograded back into Leo, at least for my disorganization. As the 1997 Retrograde got underway (Libra/Virgo), I noticed that non-aggressive types seemed to be intolerant of lazy people who waste their time. They were not willing to take action and eliminate the non-essential personnel. It seemed to be the reverse of the 1995 influence.

Delphine Jay, in CROSSROADS IN DELINEATION, states that, when Mars retrogrades through a House, something there needs a renewed effort, a renewal of activity, to be revitalized or, at least, strengthened through reinforcement. It is a time to direct your efforts toward reinforcing matters or a relationship in order to keep it vital or active. It is a time to lend strength to something or someone that you believe in.

Work activities supported when Mars is retrograde are those associated with trouble-shooting, re-evaluating previously commenced projects and shoring up the weak areas, making hard-nosed cuts with the ineffective B eliminating parts of the projects with little cost-benefit, personnel cut-backs and possibly re-hiring individuals who may know how to make the project succeed. Never start anything new! Work with what has been previously commenced and make necessary improvements. Mars Retrograde is similar to Mercury Retrograde in many respects but Mars is associated with action, projects and the energy required to make something succeed. Mars is back-door politics rather than direct confrontations.

MY PERSONAL EXPERIENCES with MARS RETROGRADE: Renovations on my home began while Mars was retrograde in early 1993. This work proceeded so slowly and it was so stressful. The work stopped after only the kitchen and bathroom were completed. It was not until September of 1994 that the work was finally finished!

In 1997, there was a lot of craziness going on trying to organize my spring trip to Europe. A friend and I wanted to travel to Ireland but I was invited to lecture in Prague in May. It was all so expensive and, when Mars turned direct, I finally made the decision to cancel the Ireland trip. I cannot tell you how stressful this decision-making was for me. I paid $40 on my Upton’s bill and they recorded 40 cents. It took 3 months to straighten it out with both my bank and the store. My mother found a young cat, insisted that I keep it (along with its medical expenses) and, within a year, it died of an auto-immune disease.

At tax time, I had a software crisis. It was horrible!! Then, my copier broke, I had it fixed and I broke it again! It was worse than Mercury retrograde. On February 14, there was a transiting Mars-Saturn opposition in Libra-Aries. I agreed to give mini-readings for a St. Valentine’s Day dance— 2 hours for $200. However, when I got there, the owner wanted me to give mini-readings for over 50 people. With Mars retrograde, people were rude, obnoxious and demanding, even when I lost my voice and could not continue. I was furious at how badly I was treated!

The best Mars Retrograde story concerned a friend who met Mr. Wonderful… who could not get it up (ED). I learned from this story that, if a man is a Perfect Gentleman for too long, there is a big problem. Men often mask these physical disabilities by taking the moral high road in relationships. There was a lot of passive-aggressive behavior in that relationship. It was painful but she cut him loose!

Another friend found a long-running work crisis abated during the Mars retrograde period. With Mars in Virgo, it was suddenly decided that a long-term backlog of work (a backlog that had gone on for 10 years) had to be brought up-to-date. It was arbitrarily decided that there would be mandatory overtime, including weekends, and no vacations until this was done…and this decision occurred one month before Christmas! She found herself fighting against this arbitrary crisis and the arbitrary rules in order to get her after-Christmas vacation and March vacation to London. By the time that Mars retrograded back into Virgo, the work was caught up, the backlog grew again, she took off for London and the crisis disappeared.

In 2001, with Mars in Sagittarius, it was intercepted in my 4th House. There was much going on in my personal life of which I was totally unaware. It exploded to the surface after Mars turned directed and opposed my natal Uranus. I also put energy into a movement that totally fizzled out when Mars turned direct. I got new eyeglasses— the worst that I have ever had and it started out with the prescription being reversed. On the positive side, I talked myself out of 3 traffic tickets.

2009 UPDATE: After living through many Retrograde Cycles, I have learned not to put my life on hold. Mars Retrograde is generally not as disruptive as Mercury retrograde. During the 2007-08 Mars Retrograde period, it was transiting the sign of Gemini. For the Sign Influences, see Mars Signs on this website. The sign that Mars transits is always very important, especially for medical influences.

From November 2007 through early 2008, Mars was in Gemini while Retrograde. Despite the Retrograde motion, it was a highly stimulating period and I did re-connect with many old friends in Europe. I did experience many health issues ruled by Gemini— Allergies, Bronchitis and Swollen Glands, all connected with inflammation and the lymphatic system (ruled by Mutable signs). Even my Gemini aunt contracted pneumonia, a condition which later took her life (she was 93 years old). I had a mammogram scare but the condition was observed as a tiny cyst with small ducts.

In December 2007, during a very bad wind storm, a huge branch of our Tulip Poplar tree fell on the top of my father’s beloved red truck. To be honest, my dad really wanted a new truck and I think he mentally attracted this accident. He gave it to his mechanic, Mike Beahm, who completely repaired it and now used it on his farm in upstate Maryland. I was very lucky because, on that day, I parked my car in a different location and the branches of the tree completely missed my car.

And, speaking of automobile crises, years ago a client needed to purchase a truck while Mars was retrograde. It was something that just had to be done for his plumbing business. I told him to buy when the aspects were favorable (I have him a date) but to insure it heavily for one year. After the year, he could drop the expensive insurance, if nothing happened. Before the year was over, his truck caught on fire but it cost him nothing since the truck had maximum insurance.

Another friend asked astrologer, Gil Navarro, to pick a good day for her to purchase a car so that she would not be affected by Mars Retrograde. Her old car died and she just had to purchase a new one. The time that he recommended insured that, if anything happened to her car, it would not cost her anything. While her car was in the garage for minor repairs, the garage was vandalized and her car was damaged. Because it was in the garage, the mechanic’s insurance company paid for all of the repairs. She had this car for many years afterwards.

2010 UPDATE:

  • I had terrible problems with a tooth that was not treated corrected by 2 new dentists. Eventually, I found a great dentist, Bill DeLong in Ellicott City MD
  • Friend dealt with a highly irrational client. This behavior was unusual for this person but she just went “crazy” about a reading.
  • 2 friends had successful surgeries but they were NOT elective surgeries. I feel that non-elective surgeries are successful with Mars R but I would never elect to have surgery at this time. If you HAVE to have surgery at this time, DO IT!
  • A friend, fearing astrological predictions by financial astrologers, sold stocks — and then had to pay over $20,000 in taxes! This was a decision that she regretted.
  • A very Neptunian young person lost connection with reality and had a breakdown.
  • The Twilight series movie, NEW MOON, came out, glamorizing depression and dysfunctional relationships.
  • A friend tried to hours to get a router to work. When Mars turned Direct, he discovered that it was just a bad router!
  • I lectured at the Cambridge NCGR conference. Because I chose a perfect time to start the trip, all went well
  • A friend and I were looking forward to a workshop in Virginia Beach, which we signed up for while Mars was R — then the big snow hit the east coast and all was canceled.

HISTORICALLY, MARS RETROGRADE: Probably more than you ever wanted to know!

The election of 1988: Michael Dukakis, a Scorpio, was unable to defend himself against the verbal assaults of Vice President Bush as soon as Mars turned retrograde. It was not until Mars turned direct on October 28— 4 days before the election— that he began to assert himself. His meek approach was confusing to both his staff of advisors and campaign commentators— but not to astrologers who knew that Mars was transiting retrograde.

Mars Retrograde Administration: The 1993 presidency commenced under a Mars retrograde influence. Many local astrologers predicted that this would not be a constructive administration. Mars retrograde in the 2nd House of the U.S. Gemini rising chart focused upon financial and economic issues. With Mars retrograde, nothing was accomplished! Clinton commanded changes in the attitude of homosexuals in the military. Such direct action was not appropriate for Mars retrograde and the matter met success only through the indirect approach of the Sam Nunn compromise. Yet, nothing really changed with the military. It was actually worse. And, don’t forget the sex scandals and cover-ups!

NOTE: I use 3 charts for the United States. The Gemini rising chart influences Americans as a people, national issues and relations with Canada and Mexico. The Sagittarius rising chart is always active with crises and actions involving other countries. The Articles of Confederation chart affects the government itself and it is always active with government scandals (spy scandals show up in this chart).

When Mars is Retrograde, Whoever Fires First Loses: It is common to see battles igniting during the retrograde period but whoever fires the first shot loses. Little Argentina never really had a chance against Great Britain but, when they fired the first shot in the Falklands, they were condemned to lose in a big way. The Russians fired the first shot in Afghanistan and, after spending billions, they were ultimately forced to withdraw. The Israeli wars have always occurred when Mars was retrograde so, in that country, there is always a fear of war and dire predictions of such by that country’s astrologers when Mars turns retrograde.

Physical Energy Impaired: The 1980 Winter Olympics occurred when Mars was retrograde in Virgo. Mishaps plagued this event, especially for the United States. If using the Gemini rising chart, Mars was retrograde in the 5th House ruling sporting activities and competitive games!


Around the first 10 days of February 1997, Mars was station in Libra. The station period, when a planet appears to stand still and change direction, is a very potent time when the planet’s energies are intensified. At the Station,

  1. A civil jury found OJ Simpson liable, in the amount of $8.5 million for wrongful death in the 1994 slaying (February 4).
  2. The Army’s top enlisted man was accused of sexual harassment. Sgt. Major Gene McKinney, on February 3, was forced to resign from the committee to investigate sexual harassment in the military.
  3. On February 3, the U.S., Britain and France agreed to freeze distribution of $68 million in gold bars that had been looted by Nazi Germany in World War II.

During the period from February through April 1997 when Mars was retrograde, there were many recorded dismissals, failed votes, blocked plans, revisions, acquittals, dropped changes, failed amendments and expulsions. A list of some of the major events of that Mars Retrograde period are:

  1. The Ecuador Congress ousts its president and an interim leader is named.
  2. Ken Star announces on February 17, that he will resign as independent counsel in order to take an academic post at Pepperdine University. On February 21, he changes his mind!
  3. In Britain, the House of Commons defeated a motion to censure the government for its handling of the Amad cow@ disease crisis, giving a Avote of confidence@ to Agriculture Minister, Douglas Hogg.
  4. Furor over the Democratic Party fund-raising intensified with disclosures of the Clinton memo, endorsing plans to reward big contributors with White House visits.
  5. On February 19, an Internet pornography scam was uncovered.
  6. On February 23, scientists clone an adult sheep, sparking a cloning controversy. In 1938, Hans Spemann of Germany first theorized this possibility. Incredibly, in 1938 and 1997, Mars was in Virgo-Libra, Jupiter was in Aquarius and Saturn was in Aries!
  7. On March 14, while very likely drinking with golf pro Greg Norman (who is a known heavy drinker), President Clinton fell and seriously injured his knee. When this occurred, the transiting Mars Retrograde in Virgo was opposing the transiting Mercury. This lined up exactly on his progressed 5th-11th House axis and the transiting Uranus in Aquarius was exactly in opposition to his natal Mercury at 7 Leo and the progressed Saturn at 7 Leo! Saturn was opposing the progressed Neptune; Jupiter was opposing the progressed Pluto.
  8. On February 26, Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, approved development of a large Jewish neighborhood in East Jerusalem despite Palestinian warnings that such construction in the traditionally Arab sector of the city would seriously affect the peace process. The Mars retrograde period was colored by terrorism and boycotts. Later, Netanyahu was caught in a scandal surrounding the appointment of an attorney general but, by April 20, there was insufficient evidence and the matter was dropped.
  9. Near the second station, on April 16, a financial crisis began in the Czech Republic. Czech Premier, Vaclav Klaus, announced a new budget of austerity measures aimed at restoring the country’s economic health. Several cases of security fraud were uncovered, the country’s economy went into crisis and Klaus was forced to resign.
  10. On March 26, 39 members of Heaven’s Gate committed ritual suicide.


During the station period, when Mars was sitting at 12º,

  1. The Serbian army began preparing for a major offensive and, while the Ethnic Albanians signed a peace accord to end the year-old conflict, the Serbian delegation rejected this agreement because it would allow 28,000 NATO troops to police Kosovo. On the evening of March 24, NATO launched its air attack.
  2. The entire EU Commission resigned amid corruption allegations
  3. The Medicare Reform Panel hit a deadlock and disbanded
  4. On March 18, when Mars changed direction and the Moon changed latitude, a train crash in Illinois killed 11 people
  5. On the last day at 12º and when Mercury changed latitudes, a deadly fire broke out in a vehicular tunnel that connects France with Italy, killing 40 people, and a train derailment in Kenya killed 32 people.

During the Scorpio phase

  1. The Dow surpassed the 10,000 mark (March 29)
  2. The Paraguayan President resigned after violent street protests
  3. Libya delivered the Pan Am Flight 103 bombing suspects for trial
  4. A New Jersey man was arrested for the Melissa computer virus
  5. A Nazi War Criminal was arrived in England
  6. Susan McDougal was acquitted
  7. The coalition government in India failed
  8. Both India and Pakistan test a nuclear capable missile
  9. Harris and Klebold kill 13 students in Colorado high school
  10. A deadly tornado struck 5 US states
  11. The Chernobyl computer virus unleashed.

During the Libra phase

  1. In Belgrade, the US “accidentally” bombed the Chinese Embassy— this was no accident
  2. The US jobless rate dipped lower in May
  3. Barak unseats Netanyahu, beginning his ineffective term
  4. British spies were listed on an internet site
  5. A 15-year old opens fire in a Georgia high school
  6. American Airlines accused of violating anti-trust laws with price fixing
  7. After a 3 month recess, the Microsoft anti-trust case was resumed
  8. India launched an air strike at Islamic militants in Kashmir
  9. Pakistan shot down 2 Indian jet fighters.


At this writing, as Mars turns retrograde, the late breaking news is:

  1. The FBI discovers 3000 pages of documents not given to McVeigh’s defense team, postponing his execution until June 11. Incompetent and controversial FBI director, Louis Freeh, finally resigns
  2. A wall collapses in western China killing 12 people
  3. US spy satellites detect evidence that China is preparing for an underground nuclear weapon test
  4. Israel fires missiles at car of Palestinian intelligence officer
  5. Most significant, Senator James Jeffords quit the GOP, shifting the power in the Senate to the Democrats.


In 2003, Mars retrograde: At Station, there was an unsuccessful coup in the Philippines. There were many terrorist bombings, including the bombing of the UN headquarters in Baghdad. There were several oustings, referendums and resignations of political leaders during this cycle.

2010 & MARS IN LEO HISTORICALLY: In December 1915/January 1916, Einstein developed a new theory of relativity, an extension of his Special Theory of Relativity developed in 1905, which altered the view of gravity proposed by Sir Isaac Newton. It would not be until after World War II that scientists would be able to test this theory.

In the war in Europe (WWI), England and France were retreating after great losses and the Serbians were driven to the Adriatic by the German, Austrian and Bulgarian armies. It was not until the Sun-Mars conjunction in 1917 that the Americans voted to enter the war in Europe. During the 1994-95 alignment, Russia attacked secessionist Republic of Chechnya and, in May 1996, when Mars moved behind the Sun, the Chechnya Peace Treaty was signed. There is an obvious pattern of aggressive action with Mars Retrograde will be corrected when Mars moves behind the Sun. The Republicans also took control of the Congress and they did nothing, never keeping their Promise to America.

In 2010, Mars Retrograde in Leo can be very frustrating for our Leo president, especially beginning at the end of January 2010. Mars Retrograde brings discoveries and breakthroughs in technology. This will be helped by the Jupiter-Uranus conjunction in 2010.


From OCTOBER 16-17 through JUNE 6 2010, Mars will transit the sign of Leo. Since the Mars sign shows how people respond when they are angry and how they react to the anger in others, Mars in Leo causes people to become angered and highly uncooperative due to pride and respect (the lack of) issues. It is important to keep this in mind when interacting with others and cooperation is required. Of course, we ourselves will be equally sensitive to pride and (dis)respect issues but, if we want to accomplish our objectives, we need to treat others with the same respect that we demand for ourselves.

Leo appreciates the dramatic! This is a great time to do something sensational and, with the fiery drive of Mars in this sign, it favors initiating new activities just for yourself. The need for attention can make people take risks, initiate action and go for the “big time.” This can be a very exciting time. In my research on depression, I found that people with Mars in Leo natally never get depressed— or rather they were too proud to every admit such a condition. So, this is not a cycle when you are prone to feeling despondent. It is a remarkably happy, upbeat cycle.

In past Mars in Leo cycles, I purchased tacky earrings and boot jewelry. I got my first tattoo and, 2 years later, my 2nd tattoo. I began renovations in my home and purchasing new furniture. Being good to yourself is essential with this Mars cycle. In my journals, I found my energies more extroverted. My need for love and appreciation was strong. I seemed to get despondent when I was ignored or felt a lack of affection in my life.

HEALTH ISSUES: When angered or provoked, Mars in Leo will manifest as a disturbance in the biochemical cell salt of Magnesium Phosphate. This cell salt acts upon the motor nerves and these respond to any pain felt in the sensory nerves. Magnesium Phosphate is found inside the cells of muscles, nerves, bones, the brain and spine. Deficiency affects muscle fibers and nerve endings. This is known as the anti-pain cell salt. It helps us to let go and relax.

Magnesium Phosphate calms agitated nerves for pain relief of headache, writer’s cramp, sciatica, neuralgia. Spasmodic is a key symptom and Magnesium Phosphate calms spasmodic coughs, menstrual cramps and leg cramps. This Cell Salt improves the body’s ability to absorb Magnesium. If lacking in Magnesium Phosphate, nerves are on edge with the inability to relax emotional (showing as anxiety, nervous disorders, depression) and physically (showing as muscle problems, fibromyalgia even worse with a light touch, nerve sensitivity-even the skin may feel overly sensitive).

When I experienced stress, my back ached. Leo rules the back and, in shouldering burdensome responsibilities, the back will suffer. Sometimes this type of back ache is due to adrenal stress. When I take two capsules of Adrenal caps, the pain is gone within 30 minutes. Sometimes it can be due to electrolyte imbalance and a good potassium-magnesium supplement can be very helpful.

The only difficult transit will be Mars opposition Neptune during the LAST WEEK OF MAY 2010. One can easily “march into the lion’s den” for others but one can become very discouraged, having one’s energies sabotaged by negativity. Because this is an opposition, you may find that others do not support you now. You may be enthusiastic but, when you look behind you, they will be gone!

A TECHNICAL VIEW OF MARS RETROGRADE…from a message to Astrological Conference on Techniques (ACT) mailing list dated January 9 2000

When Mars is transiting retrograde, it will be closer to the Earth than at any other time. Planetary distances, according to Juan Revilla (astrologer from Costa Rica and author of the freeware calculation program, Riyal), from the Sun (perihelion/aphelion) or the Earth (perigee/apogee) are a rarely-considered dimension in astrology. A…although we gave some attention to the perihelion of Pluto in 1989 because the differences are very large with respect to Pluto’s distance when farthest (aphelion) from the Sun. In the case of very eccentric orbits, such as Pluto and the Centaurs, the differences between aphelion and perihelion are more significant, more dramatic, more telling…The main difference with Mars is caused, not by its eccentricity, but whether it is in front of the Sun or behind the Sun. This is the same with the inner planets B Venus at superior (direct) conjunction is behind the Sun and farthest from the Earth (about 1.7 AU) whereas, at inferior (retrograde) conjunction it is nearly 7 times closer to the Earth (0.25 AU).@

Juan quoted an excellent example from WWII by Jane Axtell. When Mars was behind the Sun during the summer of 1941, Hitler was pushing his way through Europe without much resistance. When Mars was on the Earth’s side, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor and the action was fast and furious.@

Juan continues in his explanation: Checking Mars= geocentric distances from 1900 to 2005, one finds the maximum distance about 2.7 astronomical units with a minimum about 0.37AU, during the time of opposition, 7.3 times as much…or less. The average distance at opposition with the Sun, when closest to earth, is 0.52, and the cycle of closest approaches (nearing the minimum of 0.37AU) is 15 or 17 years, as follows: 1909, 1924, 1939, 1956, 1971, 1986, 2001 and 2003.


While Mars has a 15 to 17 cycle in which it is both close to the Sun and close to the Earth (perihelion and perigee), the apparition (appearance in the sky) is not always the same. There are rare occurrences when the Earth and Mars are within 35 million miles of each other. The last time that this occurred was September 1988, earlier in August 1924, and it will happen again in August 2003!

This event occurs when the Earth lined up between Mars and the Sun, reaching its closeness to the Sun and to the Earth at the same time with Mars appearing at its maximum brightness! For those with a scientific and historical interest, the most remote of the Mars perihelion occurred in 1969 and in 1937. In 2001, Mars will reach its opposition to the Sun on June 13, make its closest approach to the Earth on June 21, and reach its perihelion or closest approach to the Sun on October 12. For excellent graphics and descriptions, the Sky Over Berlin website is a good resource: www.surveyor.in-berlin.de/himmel/indexe.html

The June 2001 perigee was the second closest in this current decade (0.45 AU), the maximum closeness occurred in August 2003 (0.372 AU— in Pisces) and the next closest will be in July 2018 (0.385 AU— in Aquarius-Capricorn).

Historically, these specific dates do not figure prominently in world events— but the year itself is highly significant. In 1909, when Mars was Retrograde in Pisces-Aries, the pioneering spirit of Aries brought the discovery of the North Pole but, with Mars Retrograde, there was a great controversy: Who reached it first, Cook or Perry? In summer, a French aviator was the first to fly across the English Channel. With the idealistic zeal of Pisces, the ladies were protesting as suffragettes and prohibitionists. Steel strikes in Pittsburgh become violent and trigger deaths. A new introspective thought in America was fueled as Freud went on tour explaining “psychoanalysis.”

In 1924, Lenin died and Stalin took control of the USSR, King Tut’s coffin opened after 3300 years, the Teapot Dome Scandal, Greece became a republic, Hitler spends this Mars Retrograde in prison for the Beer Hall Putsch, the Leopold and Loeb Athrill murder@ trial…but none occurred in August. The year 1988 was significant for terrorist activities. I find, however, the sign of Leo and alignments with fixed stars to be more significant.

When a planet aligns with or occults a fixed star, it has a very special influence in world events. With regard to Mars’ retrograde cycles, there is a 79-year cycle of the retrograde/direct loops of Mars in the vicinity of the fixed star, Regulus. This occurred in December 1915, January 1916 (Direct, May 1916) and in December 1994-January 1995 (Direct, May 1995). These Leo cycles are far more dramatic than any of the other Mars apparitions. The Leo Fixed Stars can be found at www.astrologycom.com/fixedstars.html#Leo

One Response

  1. Hi Lynn,
    Thank you for all your insights.
    I am going to have to travel by plane from USA to UK sometime between September 3 and November 3. I will be there for a few months. As it is the Mars retrograde, and also Mercury retro, can you recommend a good day to fly?
    Also, prior to flying I will have to buy a new laptop. Again, is there a good date to buy this to avoid the issues you detailed in your article?
    Thank you!

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