Artemis Ashley ✨
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Word Witchery

Mars Retrograde 2018

From June 26 - August 27 Mars will be retrograde, spinning backwards in the sky from 9° Aquarius to 28° Capricorn. Technically, Mars has been in the "shadow zone" since May 12, and will leave the shadow zone on October 08. But we're cooking with official retrograde gas from June 26-August 27., I just like to have the shadow periods on my periphery as well for just-in-casies.

If you have planets from 0-11 of Aquarius, Taurus, Leo or Scorpio, you'll be getting pinged by this Mars Retro. Also planets from 26-29 of Capricorn, Aries, Cancer and Libra.

Spartan Warriors on Greek pottery

Spartan Warriors on Greek pottery

OK, so, before I go forward, what does a Mars retrograde really MEAN? Astrologically, retrogrades are a symbolic representation of periods of re-assessment. Mars retrogrades roughly every 25 months, not nearly as frequently as lil ol trickster Mercury. The planets do not literally move backwards in the sky, it's just a trick of the eye from our view on earth. When Mars is going backwards, so does its energy. It's a time for introspection and re-evaluation in regards to Martian themes: power, will, drive, and the expression of sexuality.

There may be a tendency to be more in your head in regards to these themes, and to either battle it out internally, or passive aggressively blow off steam towards others. Martian energy in general will be more potent, but in a much less direct way. With other planets in retrograde, it can be really easy to feel like no matter what, things won't move forward in the way you're desiring.


It's a great time to re-evaluate the projects you've got going on, and how you're going about getting them done. What's been working for you? More importantly, what HASN'T been working for you? What hasn't been working will be highlighted the most. Not because you're doomed or because the universe hates you, but to show you where your energy doesn't need to be going.


Salvador Dali

Salvador Dali

Mars is currently in Aquarius on the South Node of fate, many of the themes of this summer will deal with how we assert ourselves within our communities and friend groups. What do you like about your role in the collective? What do you not like about it? In what ways have you been undervaluing yourself by not expressing your creative side ( highlighted by Venus on the North Node in Leo)? Do you truly feel like you've found your "tribe" in life, or have you been playing it safe out of fear of rejection? 

Anytime the south node is activated, we are given the opportunity to let go and release that which no longer serves. Mars is all about precision and action, look at this Mars retrograde period as a time to get rid of the habits and ways of operating that is making your game sloppy. Mars wants to win, and is going to highlight what's going on in your life that's been having you take so many L's.


On July 26/27, the Sun/North Node will oppose Mars, Mercury will turn retrograde, and there will be a total lunar eclipse in the sign of Aquarius. Mark these dates on your calendar, they are going to be wild! If you are into manifestation or just wanna be aware of the energetic wave, these will be important dates. I will blog more about this closer to the date, but I wanna give y'all a heads up. 


Tips for surviving Mars Retrograde

  • THINK before you ACT
  • Have some sort of physical activity to rely on to channel stress/anger
  • Patience is a virtue
  • Admitting fault or that there is room for improvement is not weakness
  • If you're frustrated, be open to evaluating what steps YOU did/did not make have gotten you to your current situation
  • Be honest with yourself and your motivations
  • Those that openly lash out have a higher chance of failure (legal battles, politics (this goes for friends, family, work dynamics), etc.)
  • Hold off on starting new projects, revisit ones you haven't been able to finish instead

I think that's about it for now! I will post more soon on the upcoming Capricorn Full Moon happening tomorrow :)

See you space cowboys,

Artemis Ashley