Mars OOB, on autopilot at the Bull’s horn

I have posted on this topic on Instagram here and here, but will now look at it from a more astronomical perspective. You will find much more on this in my upcoming book.

As we can see in the graph below, Mars is in Gemini from August 20th, 2022 to March 26th, 2023. Mars usually remains a little more than one month in each sign, so his 7 months passage through Gemini is particularly long.

Mars’ longitude

Mars has no major dignities in this sign, with the exception of bound rulership from 17°-23°. He is in this part of Gemini in two occasions: From Sept. 22 to Oct. 14th, 2022 by direct motion and from Nov. 16th -Dec. 5th, 2022 by retrograde motion and the last time from Feb. 23 to March 10th.

He went retrograde on Halloween and will continue his backward motion until January 17th when e turns direct at 8° Gemini . When a planet is retrograde it is set on autopilot, in other words , the “human brain” is doing something else. Now, the autopilot may be fine in routine jobs, but when it comes to a storm, no aircraft captain would leave his plane to the autopilot. Why not? Because now he needs the maximum of flexibility and take very quick, creative or even unorthodox decisions. And that, no autopilot can do.

So when Mars is retrograde, he is set on autopilot: the God of War does what he is programmed for: he strikes out. No reasoning, no negotiations, no change of strategy. It’s a simple response on what the autopilot is trained to deal with. In a way we can say it is about his past experiences. Now, when a planet has no dignities, we can traslate this rather literally. A retrograde planet is not necessarily weak, but old habits take over. Vengeance is searched. Bills are paid. A retrograde Mars is what we do when we only see “red”. Indeed, we find red, bloodshot yes in somebody who has lost his mind and self control in his furor.

However, in Gemini there is something else to consider. Mars reaches his own North Node In Gemini, precisely at 24° Gemini, just out of his bound but on the same parallel and within 1° of longitude of the fixed star Alheka (also written as Al Hecka), at the top of the bull’s right horn. According to Ebertin, this star gives violence, malevolence and danger of accidents. In this position, Mars is just between Alheka and Elnath, between the horns with which the bull attacks its enemies.

Mars between the horns of the Bull

Mars crossed his North Node on Oct. 20th, 2022 and even though he is retrograde, he is now gaining in latitude and is thus not coming back to this position. He will however, cross his south node on Nov. 6th, 2023 at 17° Scorpio.

Now, while Mars is around his own Node for so long and getting retrograde, he is also out of bounds (OOB) most of the time, as we can see in the following graph. Any planet that goes further north (or south) than the Sun at the solstices (23°26′ N or S) is said to be out of the (solar) bounds.

Mars’ declination and OOB period

The bounds can be considered as a protective shield. As far as the planets are within the shields, the are guided by the Sun. Once they leave this shield, they lose their protection and guidance. They become wild. feral. uncontrolled.

Mars’ next aspect is a trine to Saturn on Nov. 28th, but what sounds as a controlled energy release is tricky because Mars is retrograde, so how can Saturn turn the right radio station on when the transmitter is not working?

Interesting times, certainly.

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    1. Many professional software have the option to show them in the ephemerides. Check out the freeware Planetdance, or the payware Solar Fire.

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