Planets as Teachers: Mars

Planet Mars teaches you how and when to take action

mars symbol and globe

What can you learn from planet Mars? Well ... in my past two blogs I've written about connecting with and learning from the essential energies of Mercury and Venus. These inner planets represent different ways of connecting: one with the mind and the other with the heart. Each one, in principle, is alert and responsive to people and the environment. But this week's cosmic instructor is not about listening. Mars is about taking action.

Mars, the warrior planet, is active and energetic, an initiator and instigator. You can get your Mars Power Report to find out more about how Mars motivates you personally.

Mars is the first planet outside the Earth's orbit around the Sun, representing its role as a pioneer and penetrator of new territory. Its red color reflects the passion that motivates action, and it is also associated with anger. Mars in a birth chart describes the ways we express anger, which for many people is indirect or simply suppressed. The negative ideas we have about this emotion are echoed in traditional Astrology's designation of Mars as the lesser malefic, a "bad" planet, but not as difficult as the greater malefic, Saturn.

Expressing anger can be healing

Regardless of our individual twists on Mars based on our birth charts and life experiences, we're concerned with its essential qualities that are, with some practice, available to everyone. First, a key reason why people don't express their anger is the belief that doing so will hurt others. Clearly, I'm not encouraging people to behave without concern for the impact of their actions.

However, I don't think we can hurt an adult in a way that she or he is not already wounded. "You hurt my feelings," for example, usually means that you touched me in a place where I'm already vulnerable. You didn't create that vulnerability, but you have stimulated it. Again, I'm not suggesting that sensitivity to others is unnecessary, but that touching a wound is different than creating one. And if we don't beat ourselves with guilt and remain compassionate when stirring up someone's uncomfortable feelings, we might even be able to help heal those wounds.

The instinctive, dynamic and energetic properties of Mars are somewhat blunted these days. Its extra-long eight-month stay in Libra, caused by its retrograde period of March 1 through May 19, 2014, could make us overly cautious. Indecision is a challenging trait of accommodation-seeking Libra, which sometimes turns courageous warriors into timid sycophants and flatterers. Instead of firing up ideas and taking action with spontaneity, verve and courage, we can be so concerned about arousing anger in others that we stuff our own feelings during Mars Retrograde in Libra. Passive-aggressive behavior is a common method of hiding anger by hiding our intentions.

Even small steps will move you in the right direction

A key to tapping into the fire of dynamic Mars is to get off the fence and take action, even when you're not fully prepared. This isn't about going public with a major plan before you're ready, but it's about taking at least one small step in a specific direction. You don't have to know every detail about how you will navigate new territory, but you will gain information when you're in motion that you don't get when you're standing still. Learning on the fly and learning from direct experience are positive ways to engage Mars and get stagnant projects off the ground.

Mars is physical, and it is energized when we move our bodies. Toning our muscles aligns us with the force-delivering power of the red planet. It's not necessary, though, to run marathons to make this happen. Just start walking, dancing, swimming, practicing yoga, Pilates or whatever you can do to stir up the life force Mars delivers. Building more physical strength increases self-confidence, and it can even provide more courage for taking risks.

Mars' job is not to complete tasks but simply to get them started. Tuning into its potency doesn't require a lifelong commitment or demand precision and perfection. A wise warrior is willing to experiment, and that warrior recognizes which battles are worth continuing and which are not. Mars serves us well when we live in the present as consciously and fully as we can with less concern about what tomorrow will bring.

Get your Mars Power report now to find out how Mars powers you personally »