Vedic Astrology – Five Keys for more Courage & Discipline.

Via Sam Geppi
on Jan 11, 2011
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Kuja – Mars

“Cruel with red eyes is Mars, moving to and fro, of torn form, Pitta nature, angry, with a thin medium sized body.”

Universal Principle of Mars

Capacity for Strength. The ability to put our principles into action and fight the good fight is the type of strength being referred to—not just physical strength. Actions speak louder than words; they are the truest measure of our strength of character. The discipline and courage to face down the true enemy—our own ignorance—is where Mars is leading us.

In the Vedic astrology texts it says Mars gives strength. Real strength comes from the capacity to put our principles into action, not just talk about them. This is the nature of Mars. The power of our actions. Over the weekend Mars moved into his sign of exaltation, the sign of Capricorn. Mars is exalted in Capricorn for several reasons. To understand why, we must first understand the ruler of Capricorn: Saturn.

All of our great life lessons come from Saturn. He is the planet of time, and the truthful result of our actions over time. We remember the past and don’t want to repeat mistakes. We anticipate the future, and know we must be practical, hard-working and determined if we’re going to reach our goals. We realize our actions have consequences because of the painful complexities of Saturn. We realize sometimes it’s better to avoid difficulty rather than take it on because of the fearful nature of Saturn. We have a sense that everything is going to end, including our corporeal life. Coming to terms with this and the deeper meaning of life, placed on the wheel of time and matter, comes from Saturn.

So what does this have to do with Mars being exalted? Mars is the impulsive, vital animal in the moment. In some ways completely opposite of Saturn, who is slow and careful. Mars is that pulsating, hot energy focused on our goals. He shows the clear black and white nature of our actions. Although the explanations for our actions may be complex, actions themselves are very simple. We are only doing one thing at a time. When we are doing that thing, we do not want to be distracted, derailed or prevented. When this happens, anger results usually.

For example, imagine you are going to the bathroom and someone gets in your way. Immediately you will ask why. They better have a good answer, if not, you will push them out of the way to get where you’re going. Every situation is not as urgent as going to the bathroom, but it’s the same energy behind it, Mars.

On a deeper psychological level,  Mars shows the attachment to a sense of “right and wrong”  behind the actions themselves. No one ever says to themselves “I’m going to do the wrong thing now”. No, every time we do something, in our mind it’s the right thing. This is why the fastest way to get an argument out of someone is to say they did something wrong. You will almost instantly get an argument. That is Mars. It’s very simple to Mars, “everything I do is right and if you have a problem with it you’re wrong and here’s why” (then a very logical explanation follows).

So what does this have to do with Saturn and Capricorn? The nature of Mars (that impulsive, animal in the moment) can be quite destructive in word and deed if we are not “careful” (big Saturn word there). There is a survival imperative behind it, because Mars is the part of you that will fight to the death if threatened. If someone attacks you, you don’t stop to think about why. It is very simple, me or them, and you will fight. This is the deeper nature of Mars.

However, most of the time when we fight, there is really nothing at stake except our ego. When Mars is in Capricorn, we learn from our impulsive mistakes, because that’s the nature of Saturn to show us the error of our ways in order that we become mature. However, we have to be careful with planets in Capricorn getting stuck in psychological complexes. But Mars will not, no way. Mars makes a mistake, then gets up, brushes himself off and keeps going. As it should be. Also, Capricorn is a feminine/receptive sign which hesitates before acting. The nature of Saturn to be oriented towards long-term goals rather than short-term victories (the downside of Mars) is also extremely helpful in elevating the potentially destructive part of Mars.

Between January 8 and February 14, 2011 Mars is exalted in Capricorn. We may see an escalation in aggravation and irritability, because Mars is very activated in the sign. He is oriented to destroying problems. However, there is also a deep reflective quality now with your vital energy. This is the perfect time for you to learn to “fight the good fight”, against the true enemy – your own ignorance and weakness.

A powerful Mars does not fight, just like a powerful martial artist is peaceful and confident. We have to learn the art of war in life, because there are many battles. Now’s a good time for you to explore higher physical disciplines, such as yoga and martial arts and activities that allow you to put your principles into practice and actually do the right thing, not just talk about it.

Here are five things you can try that will make you stronger in mind and body. Between now and February 14, 2011 there’s a greater chance of your success.

1. Wake up an hour earlier for meditation and solitude.
2. Eat what is best for your body, not necessarily what tastes the best.
3. When irritated with someone, wait before speaking.
4. Work out or exercise more – especially practice like yoga.
5. Speak up on behalf of  someone weaker or a cause you believe in.

Here is a video describing this transit in greater detail:


About Sam Geppi

Sam Geppi is a Vedic astrologer, and teacher. He is the author of "The Ascendant-108 Planets of Vedic Astrology." You can learn more about the universe and why astrology makes sense by checking out his Free Astrology Class CD, his Facebook and his Membership Website.


15 Responses to “Vedic Astrology – Five Keys for more Courage & Discipline.”

  1. Joan Wheaton says:

    Lovely; this is a real GEM ~ ♥ Many thanks ! I've shared on Facebook –

  2. Aradia says:

    Yo Sam! Being an Aries I have no trouble with Mars, except in opposition to Venus. I didn't quite understand the dicotomy in that way before. Exulation means " a highlighting exuberance" with strangfely enough for Capricorn usually indicates that part about digging out that discilpine neccessary to move those mountains. I always find your perspective sound and applicable! Thanks!

  3. Patrick Vaughan says:

    I disagree with the statement,
    " No one ever says to themselves , I am going to do the wrong thing now."
    I have done this many times before and I am sure I not the only one.

  4. Lauren says:

    yes so true… although i feel at least for myself the real challenge is the integration of opposites: for example, mars' firey "doer" energy and venus's need for comfort and relaxation. If i say "well forget venus i don't need sleep i just need to meditate and do sadhana and work and DO things more" then i will make myself sick… and then we all know what happens when we get sick, we just have to lay in bed and rest and nurture ourselves back to health… our bodies demand our attention – we are forced to do exactly what we were trying to avoid. Sometimes it is not realistic for everyone to wake up earlier – some of us simply have busy lives and NEED that extra hour of sleep every morning… And sometimes we eat something that is so "healthy", so we think, and it tastes kinda bad and it just makes us feel gross inside… our body rejects that "healthy" food… or we don't eat enough nourishing food to sustain our energy and we just hit the blahs somewhere during the day where we have no energy to do anything… and we thought we were being healthy by just having salad for lunch… now it is 5 pm and we are starving, irritable and not quite in our power like we were at lunch time.
    So, my question is, do we need to be careful to not overdo things now? Are we building up our mars because he is powerful or do we need to also balance him out with nurturing our venus side at the same time – because he is so powerful?
    I remember you saying once that just because a planet is exalted does not mean it will give us nice easy things in life. Isn't it that exaltation brings the challenging lessons we need in life to mature us spiritually? What are the challenging lessons that mars gives us?
    Thank you Sam, i always enjoy reading your posts… 🙂

  5. samgeppi says:

    OK Patrick,, but as long as you are saying you are doing something wrong it is OK.. But how about instead I say you are doing something wrong.. Then it is a different matter.

    And also, if you are saying "I am going to do something wrong" in that moment you are doing what is right.. (the wrong thing) . The point is – Mars is our attachment to the actions and their inherent integrity. If YOU decide to do the wrong thing (which we always do,,. I even said as much in the video. We all know what is right but we don't do it) then that is YOUR action and you will defend it. Because it was right.. That is what I am trying to convey..

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  7. Jeanine Ligon says:

    My significant other was driving me to my mom's. He had not put gas in the car beforehand and time (Saturn) was very tight. I stopped him from taking a shortcut across town thru West Philadelphia which is the drug and crime part of the city and this caused a big argument (Mars Cap). Drops me off and goes ahead to the doctor's office; calls up to tell me the car died right at the red light at the edge of the South Philly ghetto and crime area where he was once again taking another shortcut instead of following a safer route (Mars Cap and Mercury combo). The universe stopped him and gave him some time out to think. The planets really do do their things in bringing us humanoids along. Thanks for your insights, Sam. Namaste, Jeanine

  8. Lauren says:

    Sam, according to ayurveda, when we enjoy our food and it tastes good to us, it actually improves our digestion. If we are not enjoying it, it will do little to stoke our agni (digestive fire).
    And this actually does happen, at least to people with sensitive digestive systems, when we eat something "healthy" and our body rejects it. I tried to give my mom a "green" drink thinking it would make her feel better when she was sick and she almost vomited – her body did not want that. My mind and intellect thought, "this is a healthy thing for her" but her body said, "no way!"

    What i was pointing out is that i don't see people as undisciplined, in fact, i see most people as being too hard on themselves – beating themselves up in their own minds for not being good enough. This is a type of perfectionism that can sabotage any true efforts we make in life, i.e. "if i can't do it perfect then i just won't do it at all…" or "well i failed so far today i might as well just skip my meditation because i screwed up anyways…" or even, "well my mind is not focused right now in my meditation gosh why can't i just shut up and be a perfect yogi…" etc etc etc…
    Also, when we truly start to love our sadhana, our meditation; our spiritual practices, they become food for our soul; we start to crave them. Not that it doesn't take any effort on our part – it does take lots of effort, especially at first, to develop a regular practice, but i am just saying that mars' effort should be balanced with venus's enjoyment. Like Amma says, "We should develop a feeling of love in whatever we are doing, otherwise we become just like a machine."
    People are, especially in this country, so driven and action-orientated, and we approach spirituality with the same empty machine- like attitude, as if there is somewhere to GET to! We are already there! All of us – it is just a matter of allowing the pond to still so we can see clearly… and if spiritual practices help, then great – and if not, if they are just a way for the ego to feel satisfied that it has "meditated for one hour" then something is wrong with the picture. 😉
    Sam, i hear the advice to be more disciplined right now, and i agree that healthy discipline is necessary, but you said,
    ""If we are not as disciplined and physical now, we will be taking that frustration out on otherrs.. "
    and though this may be true for some people, everyone is different. I have experience working with people who are diagnosed with OCD, eating disorders, and all kinds of stress- based issues, and MORE discipline is simply not the best therapy for everyone. LOVING discipline, perhaps, and kindness, but MORE is not always what the doctor ordered.
    i think there is a real danger in being over disciplined and missing the whole point – and that – in my experience, is where people's real frustration comes out… why not try kindness for a day and see what happens? Kindness to oneself comes first… if real love is within ones heart then every living being will benefit…
    om amritesvaryai namaha

  9. samgeppi says:

    Hi Lauren,
    You are holding my words to a very holistic standards that I am not talking about (which really should be obvious). I am not talking about people practicing ayurvedc eating, loving their sadhana.. etc.

    Of course, you realize that these types of practices are carried out by about 1/10th of 1 percent of people on Earth, right?


    That is not the type of "undiscipline" that I mean. In fact I am not talking about them at all,., and they are not stressed about this – and if they are, they are not really practicing these things correctly. "Stressing out over meditation" is a misnomer.

    In fact, in the West, obesity rates are what they are. Hardly anyone meditates. Most do not exercise enough. Most are in debt,.. etc.

    Anyway, we can go back and forth forever this way. Your opinion is "we are too hard on ourselves".. I disagree with that blanket statement.

    I think (especiaily in the West) we need to grow up and be more disciplined. I hear you calling "overdoing it" as discipline – like hyper responsibility or something. There is nothing disciplined about excess in any way.

    I think a person who is being too hard on themselves needs to take it easy (as I said in the first response) and those who are being lazy and undisciplined need more of that.

    This is also an ayurvedic principle.

    thanks for writing.

  10. Anoep says:

    Hi Sam,

    Really love your video's, clear and very understandable. I think Mars is like electricity, powerful but also dangerous when flowing in the wrong way. He's our real fuel that gives energy to perform our daily tasks in life. You say in your video Mars is exalted, but exactly how powerful is he now? Is he strongest when he hits it's 28 degrees in Capri or will it be the same strength until that point?

    Thanks in advance,

  11. Janie says:

    Excellent! Very useful information…

  12. Lauren says:

    Yes, so true. "a person who is being too hard on themselves needs to take it easy (as I said in the first response) and those who are being lazy and undisciplined need more of that."
    I feel that discipline can come through kindness instead of harshness, and i find with most of my clients the kindness allows that discipline to really stick… people can make real changes in their life when they are able to come from a place of love. Thats all i was trying to say. Using venus to work with mars; an integration of opposites… a balance of yin and yang. I am an alchemist at heart.
    I guess my opinions come more as a therapist than as an astrologer 🙂 …
    How does exalted mars influence the house he is currently in, in ones birth chart? In my chart he is in the 8th now… lol…

  13. samgeppi says:

    "people can make real changes in their life when they are able to come from a place of love. Thats all i was trying to say. Using venus to work with mars; an integration of opposites"

    Sure, I don't think I implied anything different or "harshness". But I find people assume things like this.. especially if they have a past where too much was asked of them (like demanding parents) .. they feel like any time there is a call for greater discipline (or something) it is harsh.

    "How does exalted mars influence the house he is currently in, in ones birth chart? In my chart he is in the 8th now"

    mine too.


  14. Lauren says:

    ha funny and he is right where venus is in my natal chart. didn't think of that before no wonder i am so interested in venus and mars alchemy… : ) isn't astrology amazing…

  15. anju says:

    hi sam ,
    i loved your video . i think you are right about mars energy and righteous things it lets us do.i am observing all this things going .around me.