*Whether astrology is science or magic, we’re open to most things, if they may be of benefit. ~ Ed.
This summer, we will experience the dizzying influence of seven planets plus Chiron in retrograde—and six of these planets will be appearing to spin in reverse all at the same time!
When a planet “retrogrades,” it appears to be spinning backward, due to its positioning from Earth.
Each planet has its own energy and characteristics and affects us uniquely, so to have the majority of them retrograding at once is certain to have a major impact on our lives.
From June 26th to July 10th, 2018, five planets were in retrograde: Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, and Pluto, and then on July 10th, Jupiter went direct, making it four. Then, Mercury spins backward on July 26th, making it five planets in retrograde. Finally, on August 6th, Uranus joins them, making it six planets retrograding plus Chiron.
Whether we like it or not, we are all going to have to spend a little time travelling backward through our lives: we have healing work to do, forgiveness to hand out (whether to ourselves or others), mistakes to take responsibility for, and we must accept that in certain areas of our lives—when we’ve emotionally harmed ourselves or other people—we could have made better choices.
It’s also vital to remind ourselves that flaws, imperfections, and errors are all part of being human, and we can learn immense lessons from it all, so there is no use beating ourselves up and feeling irritable or angry. The only way we’re going to sail through this period is by taking accountability for our thoughts, feelings, and decisions, whether this relates to the past, or to our current relationships and circumstances.
Overall this energy is going to be pushing us in all directions.
It will shake us up so we can see that whatever spills out is what we are repressing deep inside. We will also notice that whenever those around us get rattled, their inner thoughts and emotions come tumbling out, sometimes in ways that will be uncomfortable to see.
The main thing to remember during this time is that all celestial activity occurs for our highest good.
The cosmic shifting helps us evolve past any limiting beliefs, and destroy old patterns of behaviour and destructive habits. Although it can feel turbulent, it is an opportunity to shed layers so our core being shines through purging all that is low vibrational and that no longer resonates on a soul level.
We are accelerating at such great speed that we will no longer be able to remain in hurtful spaces; whether that is dysfunctional friendships or relationships, workplaces, home environments, or the social circles we have tried to maintain and keep up with. We will be determined to rearrange our lives so we can leave behind aspects that cause inner turmoil, and we will manifest an existence that is peaceful, healthy, and intensely fulfilling.
Our universe is knowledgeable and powerful and operates in the most mysterious and mystical ways. It moves energies around constantly in order to create balance and harmony, so we must not put up resistance to the opportunities presented to us, and instead, flow in the direction that feels right.
This retrograde period will be a challenging period; however, the cosmos only delivers what we can handle, so take deep breaths, step back, reassess, and harness patience so that all responses are done with love and compassion.
Below is a short description of each retrograde and how it has affected and will influence our lives:
Jupiter Retrograde March 8th to July 10th, 2018
Jupiter is the planet of transformation and opportunity, and is associated with good fortune, progress, and wisdom. Its evolutionary goal is to assist us with reaching our fullest human expression. Although it was in retrograde, it was favourable, as it showed us all the areas we were struggling in, and helped us make tough decisions to be aligned with our goals.
Jupiter retrograde pushes us out of our comfort zone and compels us to make spontaneous moves, and so long as we’re using our intuition, we won’t need to worry that we’re running before we can walk.
Overall, Jupiter helps us re-evaluate our plans, and prioritise our time better so we focus on the direction we want to be heading. We will have no time for drama and will not think twice about cutting cords to anything weighing us down. By the end of this retrograde, we will feel lighter and more determined to pursue our lifelong passions.
Saturn Retrograde April 17th to September 6th, 2018
Saturn is one of the most feared cosmic influences, and when it turns retrograde, it churns up everything in its path.
This retrograde brings clarity and offers the opportunity to soul search so we process exactly what has been happening in our lives and most importantly, why.
Saturn throws us out of sync, so we’ll be pushed to look beyond the visible and take notice of what we’ve previously turned a blind eye to. This could mean that people we are close to are unmasked, and veils come tumbling down as we begin to see things for what they actually are rather than what we want them to be.
This retrograde is likely to have stages that feel unrelenting and destabilising—it’s all about learning from past mistakes, so it asks us to revisit them. We can only move forward when we understand why we put ourselves in certain situations or become emotionally involved with people who we weren’t meant to be with long-term.
It also teaches us how essential it is to be responsible for our personal exchanges, and to remain aware and accountable for the energy we bring to every interaction. Energy lingers and returns to us, so it is vital to remember the ripple effect of our words and actions. In doing so, we become more compassionate, thoughtful, and empathetic humans—the best and greatest versions of ourselves.
Chiron Retrograde April 17th to September 6th, 2018
Chiron represents tenderness, vulnerability, strength, and compassion, and its energy digs straight into our innermost aches and pains.
Collectively, this rare Chiron phase in Aries is a healing period and a major positive energy shift for our entire planet. We awaken to the abuse we have suffered previously, or are still going through, and we take positive steps to heal ourselves and make more meaningful connections with those around us.
Chiron’s presence can be a painful catalyst that catapults us to become aware of our fear, heartache, dysfunction, loneliness, trauma, desire, frustration, and resentment we have been holding on to.
As our vibration elevates and we let go of old ways, others may try to pull us down by belittling or criticizing us so we remain vibrating on the lower frequency they resonated more harmoniously with. It can be tempting to allow this to happen to avoid conflict; however, our personal growth is imperative if we want to attain inner peace, harmony, and a healthy sense of self and well-being.
Pluto Retrograde April 22nd to September 30th, 2018
Pluto is not officially a planet—it is now known as a dwarf, which means it resembles a small planet, but is still known for its strong characteristics and carries its own unique energy signature.
Pluto in retrograde is all about becoming aware of our dark emotions, as they can easily intoxicate us and seem uncontrollable at times. Negative emotions do not make us powerful—they actually cause weaknesses, as when we are consumed with emotion, our minds are impaired and limited. This can leave us open and susceptible to unexpected personal attacks, as well as not thinking clearly, resulting in poor decision-making.
This retrograde period helps us fearlessly open up, so that we take accountability for our lower vibrational traits and tendencies. We will then no longer project our dark energy onto others through accusing, blaming, or shaming other people for what essentially is the denial of ourselves.
During this period, we will gain greater understanding of our negative emotions and see that they are not our nemesis.
We do we need to feel ashamed of ourselves when our emotions flare up. When we deny and suppress them, we give them more strength. When we accept all sides of ourselves, and others, we will feel liberated, and will transform.
Note: acceptance doesn’t mean we have to put up with abusive behaviors from others or allow our own harmful actions to continue, it means having compassion and understanding for negative emotions, beliefs and thought patterns.
Mars Retrograde June 26th to August 27th, 2018
This retrograde is proving to be intense, as Mars is closer than it’s been to Earth in the past 15 years, and is currently clearly visible, shining 25 times brighter in the night sky than it did at the start of the year.
Mars, named after the God of War, draws out our assertive warrior-type energy, and remains in retrograde for approximately 11 weeks, so if anything that may potentially bring conflict can be paused and dealt with after this hostile period, it is advisable to wait. On the plus side, conflict is an opportunity to slow down and consider how we express ourselves and learn new strategies for dealing with those who trigger our emotions.
This Mars retrograde energy will frequently throw us out of alignment during its course. However, as with all cosmic energy, this temporary fragmentation is for our highest good, and serves a divine purpose. It forces us to take a long, hard look at what, and who, we are prioritising. We then have the option to take our time and energy away from whatever pulls us down to lower frequencies, and to refocus it so we place importance on ourselves, for once, and indulge in vital self-care and nourishment.
Neptune Retrograde June 18th to November 24th, 2018
Neptune is an enchanted, otherworldly planet and is associated with magic, mystery, and miracles.
This retrograde feels particularly turbulent for those who live with a wide-open, compassionate heart, who forgive and forget instantly. It pulls up past hurt and betrayal where we were naïve and far too trusting—it’s important to remember that not everyone has pure intentions. This planet draws out the areas that need healing from when we were vulnerable to people who deliberately caused us harm.
With Neptune in retrograde, conflict may occur in intimate relationships, as those with empathetic hearts will notice where their sensitive nature is being taken advantage of, and may start to mistrust those who are only around for self-gain. This period, many will notice that they withdraw into themselves at regular intervals, to balance and recharge their energy, and mostly so that they have time for introspection so they can see why certain people have attached themselves.
Neptune is master of illusions, and when it is direct, it places masks over everything so we have to work hard and use our intuition to see with clarity. Then, when it is retrograde, if we haven’t sharpened up, it tears away the illusions and falsities to jolt our awareness.
This planet nudges those who are not living true to their heart. This is so that they come back down to Earth before they lose themselves in inauthentic relationships, or become too detached from reality.
Mercury Retrograde July 26 to August 19th, 2018
One of the most notorious and much feared planets to retrograde is Mercury, and it seems that even the disbelievers can’t help but notice that it is too much of a “coincidence” that their lives turn upside down the moment this planet appears to reverse. Not only that, it retrogrades far too often for most people’s liking, at three times per year, so just as we think we put our lives back in order, the tailspin begins again!
Mercury is the ruler of intelligence, the mind, and all forms of communication, and is associated with listening, negotiating, purchasing, selling, speaking, travel plans, technology, and lost items. It is well-known to be a troublemaking planet while in retrograde. Therefore, interactions, and plans that would normally be straightforward will likely go haywire, so we can expect these things to break down, malfunction, or erupt out of control.
Telephone conversations, emails, and simple discussions may be full of misunderstandings, misinterpretations, and missing links, which is made particularly worse as the majority of people will seem hell-bent on winning arguments at any cost.
It is important to remind ourselves to filter our thoughts before communicating, so we figure out exactly who and what mischievous Mercury has brought to our attention and why. It is wise to try not to be impulsive, jump to irrational conclusions, or make hasty prejudgments, and to try to think three times before we open our mouth to speak. It is likely we may be quite paranoid and take criticism to heart, feeling as though any negative comment aimed in our direction is a deliberate attempt to discredit and derail us.
Uranus Retrograde August 7th, 2018 to January 6th, 2019
Uranus brings our creative and intuitive sides to the surface and encourages us to make a start on any project or new idea we have been pondering. It is also a powerful time to focus on manifesting so that we give our innovations the opportunity to transform into reality.
When this planet is in retrograde, we will notice strong periods of frustration and restlessness, particularly if we haven’t been working hard on personal projects and goals we have been hoping to achieve. This planet keeps providing signs and synchronicities to remind us of the plans we have placed on the shelf, and to prod us to get them started.
Basically, Uranus won’t allow us to rest and feel settled until we start taking action and make headway on our soul mission. It signals that our procrastination days are over and if we want inner peace, we’re going to have to work hard to achieve it. There’s no use putting things off—the longer we leave it, the harder this planet will make our days! The moment we align our free time with our purpose on Earth, we’ll notice instant inner calmness and the retrograde will no longer appear to go against us, but will work in our favor.
Retrogrades turn our energy inward and intensify it, which is why many of us withdraw and become more introspective and introverted.
Although retrogrades may seem chaotic, they are blessings in disguise.
They shift our focus so we become aware of anything that’s not aligned in our lives, and take note of the unhealed wounds and unresolved emotions that are desperately trying to gain our attention.
When we turn the spotlight inward, we are able to see where we’ve been going wrong, where we are currently at, and where we are heading. Ultimately, this helps us take accountability for our personal journey so we avoid repeating the same mistakes.
Retrogrades are known to make us feel highly intuitive. We may find we can’t sleep, feel irritable, and are on an energetic “high,” and that our lives seem far more turbulent than usual. When we are sleep-deprived, we may feel more confused and edgy, as though we are running on adrenaline, causing us to feel achy, overemotional, and irrational.
As we move through this period, we will want to cleanse our homes, social media accounts, and friendships, as well as reconsider commitments and eliminate bad habits. This detox will be severe at times as we purge old energies and remove anything, or anyone, that prevents us from moving forward and achieving peace.
Even though it feels far from it at the time, retrogrades are always beneficial.
They send shockwaves through our relationships and trigger unhealed wounds and churn up old history. Therefore, it is possible that ghosts from our past will make unexpected appearances accompanied with emotional confessions; this is to ask us to take one last look before we decide to reopen or firmly lock doors that we previously closed. We may receive calls or messages that will take us by surprise and cause a great deal of tension, especially if we wrongly interpret the intentions of the messenger and jump to false conclusions.
Before we alter our life path, we can first look at which internal buttons the people around us are pressing and why we have felt a strong desire to react; it is essential to discern exactly who and what the retrograde phases bring to our attention.
Don’t pay much attention to anything that goes wrong during the retrograde—as once the majority of the planets are travelling in a straight motion, our meaningful relationships usually straighten out too.
This is a period of soul-searching and reflection, and one of accepting who and what is meant to be in our lives and then compassionately releasing who and what isn’t.
It is worth treading lightly and with caution during this time, and it is not recommended, unless absolutely necessary, to make life-changing decisions during a retrograde. This is a time for reflection, introspection, and caution—not for hasty emotion-fueled reactions.
Retrogrades are catalysts for positive transformation and radiate waves of cosmic energy that shake and alter our lives, giving us the opportunity to wipe the karmic slate clean and turn our lives around for the better.