October 2020 Transits – Retrograde of Mars and Mercury – Use your words wisely!©Sangeeta Venkatesh

So, we are in the last quarter of the year. It has been an intense year globally. We have had to cancel things, been in lockdown, put our masks on and have had to comply to the rules of authority. The human mind has been fragile. On the other hand, there has been introspection in the minds of people. Some people have re-invented themselves. For many, the iron is now hot enough to build new directions for life. This year has been a year of karmic purge and accountability.

  1. Mars Retrograde (October 4th): Mars has been retrograde from September 9 and will be so until November 14. But while it is in Pisces from October 4 – December 24 it will be more volatile. As mentioned in the previous essays, I have mentioned that when planets go retrograde, they bring up past issues concerning what the planet rules. In case of Mars, the planet rules energy, ambition, but can also become combative. While anger is destructive, it can also be transformative. Mars is a masculine energy and can also represent weapons. Retrograde Mars will amplify all these emotions. Anger is a very real emotion and very often it is based on past injustices. This retrograde happens every two year with Mars. This year it started retrograding in Aries and will appear to go back to Pisces. This retrograde is very rare and happens after many years. Mars is very close to Earth at this time and can be viewed with the naked eye. It was the closest to the Earth on October 6th. October 6th -7th , it was at the Gandanta point at 29 degrees Pisces. The Gandanta points have been explained in an earlier essay. To say that ‘The heat is on’- will be an understatement.
As per EarthSky, the month of October will see Mars coming closest to the Earth in the next 15 years. The best time to watch would be midnight.

But the key date is October 13th. On this date it is exactly opposite to the Sun and is in the middle point of the retrograde cycle. You could have people reacting in an amplified manner. Mars opposite the Sun will direct people’s anger towards those in positions of authority. Sun also represents our children. So rebellion between generations is possible. If there is a time to step back- now is the time to take the courageous step – to avoid friction.

With the American elections round the corner, things could heat up considerably. It could be about the health of world leaders, but we have to wait and watch. Let’s hope that they are conducted peacefully – if it happens at all.

Clearly an exciting time, where we could be witness to events that will impact the world. Astrologers say that these are times that will be historically remembered as some of the most ground-shaking events literally and figuratively, as the back and forth of Mars also represents tectonic shifts. Leaders will be in precarious positions and in return they also act forcefully.

If we were not in a pandemic, astrologers say we could be in a global war and armed conflicts. The pandemic, hence, could be a blessing in a disguise.

(Reproducing a para from a previous essay to recapitulate and provide context: August 16: Mars enters Aries; Mars is usually very potent in Aries and indicates extreme emotions. Further, Mars will be on and off in Aries, as it retrogrades from September 9 – November 14. It will be in Aries on August 16 – October 4th . Then again on December 24 – February 22, 2021)

  • Mercury Retrograde on October 14th 17 degrees Libra: Just when Mars is opposite Sun, Mercury too will begin its retrograde. Mercury retrograde does mean a disruption in communication.  I have written a detailed essay on Mercury Retrograde that is still applicable now and you can read it here.  Libra represents the sign of peace and balance and while Mercury is retrograde in this sign, the scales of balance will tend to swing out of balance. An additional information is that Metrcury will be exactly opposite Uranus on October 19th.

Other dates are as follows:

  1. October 01: Full Moon 14 degrees Pisces in the nakshatra Uttara Bhadrapada

The Moon in Pisces directs the energy to Jupiter because it rules Pisces, and Jupiter in the sign of Sagittarius is about spiritual awareness. Indeed, this year has awakened many to spirituality.

  • October 4: Pluto Direct 28 degrees Sagittarius

While Vedic astrologers do not consider the outer planets, several others have incorporated them in their studies. They say that Pluto is a force that actually deals with the unconscious forces that direct our lives. It rules the underworld and Pluto moving directly can begin to reveal dark issues that have governed our lives and we can change our lives positively when we start to recognise it. At a global and collective level, hitherto dark secrets that govern corruption, deceit and manipulation of the population will begin to come out. And I was just reading this morning how news TV channels are manipulating viewer sensibilities to garner TRPs (television rating points) !!

  • October 9: Mars square Pluto

This aspect could indicate violence that affects everyone, as Pluto stationing can intensify Martian energy.

  • October 16: New Moon in 29 degrees Virgo

The New Moon arrives at the last degree of Virgo could indicate that something has to end before a new beginning. This is a point of activation.

October 17th : Sun moves to the sign of Libra where it will be debilitated. Sun. Sun – or authority will have to follow the rules of Saturn- the ruler of Libra and justice has to be meted out.

  • October 23rd: Venus enters Virgo; Last month Venus rushed through Cancer and Leo and as we saw many women were targeted in scandals and controversies -as was predicted. Hopefully, it should ease out now.

Venus now moves to Virgo where it is debilitated. As Venus rules wealth and money, this could mean a negative indicator for the economy and stock markets. However, astrologers say that the drop in the market marks a good time to invest, as it could go high in 2021. For relationships, depending on individual horoscopes, it could be a trying time.

Evolutionary astrologists, like Maurice Fernandez, also take into account asteroids to anticipate events. On October 19th there is a subtle activation, where Mercury opposes Uranus at 9 degrees Scorpio- 9 degrees Taurus. The asteroid Juno related to relationships is also at 9 degrees Scorpio. This month, we see Hygeiathe 4th largest Asteroid, which is connected to health is at 9 degrees Leo. Hygeia, as you may know- gets the name from the Greek goddess of health and is the root of the word ‘hygiene’. She is the daughter of Asclepius, the God of medicine. So, this is a warning that while we can look forward to healing- we still have to be careful about our hygiene.

But to summarise, this is a month to focus on anger management. Our adrenal glands are taxed, but we need to choose our battles.

Some tips:

  • Think before you speak, write or respond;
  • Express your anger only when you are calm;
  • Get some exercise;
  • Take short breaks/ time-outs/;
  •  Identify solutions instead focusing on the problem;
  • Avoid criticizing and putting blame that may only increase tension;
  • Forgive- if that is possible and do not hold a grudge
  • See the funny side/ use humour
  • Practice deep breathing to relax when you see the anger emerge
  • Seek help – if all the above fails

To quote Joni Patry, “All negative emotion is based and rooted in fear. Fear is what controls and directs our anger. Now is the time to analyze our fears and anger that have been controlling our lives. The fear and anger are based on our past and we need to realize it does not have to continue to dictate the outcome of events in our life. What a powerful awakening and opportunity this retrograde period of Mars and Mercury can bring.”

So we are in midst of a powerful energy and things will never be the same. It does not mean, that we will be wearing a mask indefinitely, because next year the energies are shifting. But right now, we need to harness it effectively – breathe fresh air, think about nature and meditate on the Supreme Being who is constantly teaching us our life-lessons.


Disclaimer: I am but a student of the study of planets and by no means an expert. The essay is a humble attempt by collating the works of experts.

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