We have a guest article today! Æterna from Æternalight Astrology is contributing a fabulous piece on how to use the energy of difficult Mars aspects to Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. For the newbies to astrology, the hard aspects are conjunctions (in about the same spot), squares (90 degrees or 3 signs apart), and oppositions (180 degrees or opposite one another). I have Mars square Uranus myself and she got me exactly!
With Aries season underway, fresh starts and new growth are big themes. Assertion and willpower, among others, are what we need to kick off a new project, and pursue our ambitions – and they fall under the rulership of Mars, the planet that lords over Aries. Mars is the planet of action; he provides that initial, essential spark which ignites our motivation to do things. All of us have Mars somewhere, but not every one of us is able to channel it with the same efficacy; tense aspects between Mars and other planets tell us about the kind of blocks we might encounter when trying to get in touch with this energy. However, it’s often the social and outer planets on our Mars that create the most trouble, simply because the Ego is not always ready to embrace and integrate transpersonal energies, so we’re more inclined to meet them with resistance. The good news is that you’re not doomed, and that there are ways to work with these aspects in a way that promotes growth and even success! Here are some simple, practical tips on how to transform your Mars aspected by Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, into a force to be reckoned with.
Saturn being the cosmic sergeant of our Solar System, this is the ultimate “boot camp” aspect! The ringed planet symbolizes discipline, endurance and self-control – qualities that are unbeknownst to impulsive, headstrong Mars. The Saturnine energy of restraint and control can cause a huge deal of inhibition and fear, which easily turn into frustration when the individual can’t seem to get past the (inner and outer) stumbling blocks this aspect often indicates. Saturn is the voice of our inner authority, our Super Ego: our actions and urges (Mars) might feel constantly thwarted and even sabotaged by its strict, at times despotic judgments. But Saturn also bestows the gift of standards of excellence achieved through time and constant work: believe it or not, the Warrior and the Sergeant can actually get along once they manage to come up with a joint plan (planning and organizing are both Saturnine specialties – take note). In order to prevent Saturn from thwarting the flow of our life force, we must befriend him: developing patience and persistence, incorporating a sense of structure in our endeavors, taking time to make plans and assuming responsibility for our actions can go a long way toward reconciling us with our own willpower. The support of experienced authorities of any kind can also benefit people with this aspect – learning from those who derived their confidence and expertise from regular effort sustained through time can prompt Mars/Saturn to express the same potential. Look for mentors, teachers, institutions who can help you with your goals and ambitions.
. . . And now for something completely different – this could easily be Uranus’ motto. Uranian energy is sizzling, electric and inconstant, and the Mars/Uranus aspect is an especially disruptive, unpredictable match, even more so when the aspect is tense. Erratic drive, pronounced reactivity and a proneness to accidents are some of the obstacles one might face in dealing with such combo, but you can subtract power from the dysfunctional Mars/Uranus expression if you pour it into action geared towards innovation and cultivation of our own independence instead. Uranus is the rebel who needs a cause – one that should be suited to our character, and grant us as much free-range and personal space as possible. This energy doesn’t respond well to expectations and regimens - hierarchies and normality tend to elicit pointless confrontations and trigger Uranus’ volatile temper. The right dose of Uranian detachment, combined with unwavering focus on our autonomy, on our unique methods, and on our idiosyncratic path is the recipe for success when it comes to Mars/Uranus: instead of getting distracted with useless battles against rules and authorities, we should give ourselves permission to look ahead and do things our way, being as clear and outspoken about our intentions as possible.
As strong-willed and forceful as he is, poor Mars can easily find himself helpless in Neptune’s la-la-land. Neptune is the planet of mysticism, inspiration, transcendence and – sometimes – delusion, and those are nebulous concepts for the cosmic warrior . . . unless he becomes a spiritual warrior, of course. The most common word associated with Neptune is ‘sacrifice’, and indeed this aspect might ask us to sacrifice part of our Martian drive for instant gratification and results in favor of a more fluid, flexible MO. Mars/Neptune works best when action is attuned to inner timing and idealistic purposes; fluctuating energy levels and inconstant motivation can actually help us attain our goals by teaching us how to flow around obstacles. Unlike Saturn, who demands discipline at all costs, with Neptune we’re much better off riding the waves of inspiration without forcing ourselves to be productive at all times. This might mean working in short spurts, one step at a time, preferably toward goals that involve some kind of artistic, transcendental, humanitarian purpose; allowing ourselves to be creative in our approach, and to factor in our intuition and feelings. It goes without saying that I’m not advocating flakiness and denial of responsibility here, but rather a conscious, commonsense approach to adaptability and spiritually motivated action. After all, why wouldn’t a warrior want the Universe on his side?
When Mars finds himself locked away into Hades, it’s hard for him to emerge. Pluto lords over the dark underworld of the subconscious, where the most unacknowledged, but also most creative and transformative parts of ourselves dwell, and a tense aspect between Pluto and Mars is frequently the astrological marker of the struggle between embracing and repressing our drive. While this is definitely a combination that benefits from strategy, patience and tactical thinking, it also requires a great deal of self-honesty about the actual intentions and aims that lurk behind our acts, in order to avoid potential tendencies towards covert action, manipulation or repression that might backfire. There is nothing wrong with probing the depths – in fact, it can be a rich and rewarding experience, proven that we are aware and in control of ourselves, and not simply at the mercy of our own undifferentiated impulses! Developing the courage to check our motivations, re-thinking and re-working our expression of the Mars principle as often as needed, making the most of Pluto’s laser-beam focus and learning how to conserve and sublimate our power (by dropping dead weight when necessary) is sure to provide our inner warrior with enough strength and stamina to successfully conquer the underworld and beyond.
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