Jan 12, 2023 | by Erik Roth |
On January 12, 2023, Mars’ 2 ½ month journey (since October 30, 2022) retrograde ends. Astrologically, this takes place at 8°07’ Gemini. This is the first station direct of Mars since November 13, 2020 in the sign of Aries. In the sky, this shows the apparent movement of Mars from “backward” to “forward” again. Earth has now fully passed Mars in its orbit.
Any station point for a planet is a “still point”, meaning a point where there isn’t any perceptible movement. With “As Above, So Below”, it’s a still point for what Mars symbolizes within us, the Masculine Principle. Mars also symbolizes action and utilizing instinct, but this is where it is more about the deep breath before the race.
Mars is stationing only 2 degrees away from the Eye of the Bull, the star Aldebaran. This star is one of the 4 directional or “Royal Stars” of ancient times. The constellation of the Bull and its horns are astrologically and symbolically activated by Mars’ transit back and forth through here over several months since the end of August, 2022. The Bull constellation has been recognized by humanity for tens of thousands of years, so this passage of Mars is also quite primal. It may unlock some of the mysteries about our knowledge of this area of the sky.
I’ve shared much about the archetype of Gemini in this Mars transit of that sign. Mars has been in that sign since August 20, 2022 and will continue until March 25, 2023. Gemini is popularly known as the Trickster archetype, but that doesn’t really paint the complete picture of what Gemini is, in my opinion.
Gemini is an embodiment of duality in all its flavors. It is through story, poetry, entertainment, dance, wit, unorthodox wisdom and spiritual agility that this embodiment expresses itself. Gemini reflects all that we are in irreverence and showing us the truth of ourselves collectively.
There are many names Gemini has been called from the fool, jester and troubadour to the coyote, Kokopelli and sacred clown. Through those stories and tales, we can laugh at ourselves and realize sometimes we don’t have to be so very serious.
At its essence, Gemini is neither masculine nor feminine, it is an archetype that is more androgynous. Its higher state of expression is to go beyond our duality while also bringing along duality at the same time. Gemini also desires to know it all, but in its heart knows that infinite knowledge can’t be achieved or contained in in mind.
Back to the Still Point
The deep breath before the race is symbolic of Mars itself as it stations direct. This includes time for preparation or being in a ‘state of readiness’. Mars tends to be about action and instinct but with Gemini, it includes the mental state and its imagination. It is definitely a time for thoughts, introspection and creative projections of what could be. But it is also about being open to what may be possible in the outcomes that includes the divine mind and the irrational.
It’s a good time to meditate on what was up to this point since Mars’ retrograde back on October 30th. In the Shamanic Astrology system, this station direct point is the halfway mark between the Mars-Sun opposition on December 7, 2022 at 16°05’ Gemini and when Mars reaches that point again on February 20, 2023. In the whole of the synodic cycle of Mars, February 20th marks the end of Phase 1 and the start of Phase 2.
Phase 2 is the time of the “tasks” of Mars, a time that inspired a major portion of what we know as the “hero’s journey” in Joseph Campbell’s research and writings. While Phase 1 is more of an “emergence” stage of the cycle itself. The Mars synodic cycle begins at the Mars-Sun opposition due to our experience with Mars at its closest point (usually within a few days or week of its opposition), its brightest point within the extra-long time it spends in one sign (sometimes a combination of 2 signs) or area of the sky.
The Mars synodic cycle is very long, spanning on average, 780 days, or nearly 26 months. This synodic cycle of Mars will go on until January 15, 2025, a period of 770 days. Gemini sets the tone for the entire cycle, which can be called the “overtone” or “overstory” of this Mars cycle. I’m not attached to which term to call this Gemini cycle as both overtone and overstory describe the overall archetypal intent of the cycle.
What comes after the still point? The “race” itself. I’m speaking to that because Mars is about action and the last weeks of Phase 1 is about placing more attention in the journey and what is unforeseen. Creative application and imagination from Gemini will help immensely.
Neptune also plays a role in this synodic cycle as the run up to the Sun-Mars opposition featured a pair of Neptune-Mars squares. There will be another one on March 14th that will complete the trifecta of squares. This element to this Gemini overtone of Mars informs us that attachments to how this journey is “supposed” to go will not be of help. Neptune tends to dissolve attachments and what we think of as real turns out to either be an illusion or something not yet intended to happen fully.
Final Thoughts on Mars Station Direct
We can look up into the night sky at the bright Mars sitting above the bright reddish star Aldebaran, the eye of the Bull. Of the visible planets in the sky, Mars is currently farthest from the Sun (meaning that as we see it from Earth – Saturn is the farthest from the Sun, that is visible, in actual distance). Aldebaran is part of a very large area of prominent stars that the Lakota people called the “Sacred Hoop of Stars”. Mars is a journeyer through here, going back and forth over Aldebaran, perhaps to gain a measure of vision for the journey ahead.
For those that want to honor this point of Mars, we can do that through simple meditation, introspection and allowing the mind to wander without any goals. It is an open space of mind, thought and creative vision. It’s a time to take a deep breath and gaze inward to what duality means for you, pondering what may lie beyond it.
Like the other planets, stars, Moon and other planetary bodies, Mars is a “spirit guide” for us. We can connect to it for guidance in our own journeys. In this current expression of Mars, which is Gemini, we can meet the various sides of ourselves and see where they can work together to go beyond in how they show up. The inquisitive nature of Gemini is never meant to stop its curiosity but to keep going, discovering itself and its infinite reflections.