Monthly Vedic Astrology Forecast

March 2012

by Kerry Shamblin

Calculations are done using the Chitrapaksha ayanamsha and the mean node. Timings are based on Mountain Time Zone, US.

Mars Maintains Retrograde Motion in Leo March 1 - March 31

As the month of March unfolds, Mars continues his retrograde motion, from 20° back to 10° of the Sun's fire sign, Leo. March is the fifth of the eight months that Mars occupies Leo. One could refer to previous forecasts for this current Mars in Leo transit, starting with the November 2011 forecast.

To briefly summarize, Mars is the planet of drive, power and utilization of resources. While pioneering, a master of planning and design and filled with energy to protect and serve, Mars can also be aggressive, selfish and insensitive. He expresses his energy in the zodiac through the fire sign, Aries, the first sign, and through the water sign, Scorpio, the 8th sign.

Leo is the domain of the Sun and this puts Mars into a friendly environment, as Sun and Mars are naturally friendly toward one another. This is also a fiery combination, so actions or projects that require sustained activity, creative use of resources and energetic transformation are well supported.

Both Mars and Sun tend toward self-centered behavior, so honor the need for "me time." The space you carve out to focus on the self could be very creative and transformative. Just make sure that attention is paid to the fact that our actions do have repercussions, and that we are not operating in a world all our own. In fact, that last suggestion could be the underlying suggestion that Mars is offering throughout this eight month transit.

Mars is youthful, energetic and perceptive in nature, while Leo, with its tradition and nobility, can represent environments that are static and hierarchical. Mars could go either way: he could become the champion and defender of the status quo or he could lead the charge of the revolution that seeks a redistribution of power.

Mars represents our own capacity to manage and acquire power that we use to support our lives and efforts. The ego that Mars and the Sun represent is essential for self-preservation, but can easily grow too large and sometimes shrink too small. Until the Sun moves into Pisces on March 14, the Sun and Mars aspect one another from opposite signs, Aquarius and Leo. Saturn's rulership of Aquarius will be helpful in keeping perspective about interdependence during this exploration of self-expression.

We receive additional benefit from Jupiter's positive and powerful influence on Mars by both Jupiter's occupation of Mars' sign and by Jupiter's aspect from Mars to Leo. Jupiter is expansive and positive, and throws another altruistic urge in Mars' direction.

Mars also casts his own influence from his position in Leo: first to Scorpio, his own sign, currently host to Rahu, second to Aquarius hosting Sun through mid-March and third to Pisces, host to Mercury during March. Between March 12 – April 3, Mercury will be retrograde, so this combination of retrograde energy in tandem with Mars' encouragement of the worldly Rahu energy could cause quite the stir for the latter half of March.

While much could be accomplished, there isn't a great deal of stability, so be aware of rushing into things without all information in place or re-dos could be prevalent. When planets are retrograde, their energy is actually stronger, which accounts for the haywire energy. Be sure to create a solid, strong channel to give and receive your energy this month so that too much pressure in the line doesn't knock you off your feet.

Jupiter Transits Bharani Nakshatra March 1 - March 31

As mentioned, Jupiter is currently occupying Aries, Mars' fire sign, and more specifically, will transit through the nakshatra Bharani as our month of March passes. Bharani is the second lunar mansion, spanning 13º20' – to 26°40' Aries. Bharani is ruled by the planet Venus, by the deity Yama (god of death) and its symbol is a yoni, the female sexual organ. Bharani carries the energy of feminine strength and the doorways that birth and death represent.

The influence of Venus as ruler of Bharani and Mars as ruler of Aries gives Bharani a passionate creative potential. With the expansive energy of Jupiter channelled through this lunar mansion as the month of March passes, we could be at risk of some big creative actions.

In addition, Venus herself transits Aries this month, through Bharani specifically from March 12-24. Building on the theme of Mars' purpose in Leo, we look to the influence of Venus to be another positive benefit to this situation. Venus is the planet of love, empathy and compassion; her aura stretches beyond the self and extends to all. Bring compassion into your actions as you expansively create your way through the vernal equinox.

Saturn Continues Retrograde Through Libra March 1 - March 31

Saturn began his current retrograde cycle on February 7 and slowly chews his way back through the early degrees of Libra, in the lunar mansion of Chitra, which spans from 23°20' Virgo – 6°40' Libra. The theme of art and creativity continues. In the western world, we know the star Chitra as Spica, one of the brightest stars we see in the night sky.

Chitra is associated perfection of beauty, form and brilliance. It carries the energy of Mercury and Venus, who rule the signs Virgo and Libra that Chitra spans, and it is ruled by Mars, so again our theme continues.

Creative use of restraint and expansion will help us to transform situations such that we bring health and balance to ourselves and others.

Creative (Venus) use of restraint (Saturn) and expansion (Jupiter) will help us to transform (Mars) situations (Sun) such that we bring health and balance to ourselves (Mars/Sun) and others (Venus).

There is great creative potential being expressed, even through our slowly moving, and increasingly strong friend Saturn, who isn't normally the first in line for "creating." In our creative endeavors during this time, Saturn's nullifying tendencies could act to create negative space, ever so important in the art world. Saturn creates by removing and destroying; sculpting, carving, editing, removing, detaching. Letting go can be an act of creation.

Venus Transits Aries March 1 - March 27

Venus enters Mars' fire sign on February 29 and glides quickly through with a curtsy to Jupiter, exiting to her own sign of Taurus on March 28. Venus and Jupiter will be within three degrees of one another from March 11-17, which should be quite the spectacle to behold in the night sky. This occurs in Venus' own lunar mansion, Bharani.

The combination of Venus and Mars energy often leads to the expression of passion in one modality or another. While the environment of Aries can be somewhat intense for the delicate sensibilities of Venus, the opportunity to fan the flames of creative desire make enduring the intensity worth the materials gathered for the art project.

Also, we again make note of our need for a Venusian approach to the currently strong self-oriented energy brought to us via Mars and the Sun. As you pave the way to happiness, realize you have the choice between building an attractive cobblestone or heavy-duty asphalt road. Venus helps us think of the little fishes in the streams that are poisoned by our martial pursuits.

And since there is so much retrograde energy, the underlying message is to go slowly, as there is great power in our actions and we can make them magical when we consider all aspects of the situation before we act.

Sun-Mars and Venus-Saturn Oppositions March 3

Saturday, March 3 sees two simultaneous oppositions: Sun in Aquarius opposite retrograde Mars in Leo, and Venus in Aries opposite retrograde Saturn in Libra. This could be a particularly poignant day that expresses the themes discussed throughout this forecast. The moon will be waxing in the sign of Gemini, while Mercury will be debilitated in Pisces. Mental energy will be strong, discipline and energy will be strong, creativity will run high, but it might be tough to express it in words.

Full Moon in Leo March 8

As the planets mentioned above begin to slightly spread, but still hold their fields of opposition, the Moon joins Mars in Leo for what should be a brilliant full Moon in the early morning hours of Thursday, March 8. This pairing of the full Moon and Mars occupying the stars of Leo will be visible all evening long March 6-8, while the Moon moves through the Sun's fiery sign toward a meeting with a fiery planet. It would be surprising not to feel the energy building as the Moon waxes toward her friend Mars, in a friendly environment.

The Moon becomes full at 24° Leo, in the lunar mansion called Purva Phalguni, which translates as "ripe fruit of the tree." It is ruled by Venus, and is an environment of creativity, prosperity, pleasure, fulfillment and love. Let your lunar nature completely open to receive this ripe and vital energy.

This is the culmination of the lunar cycle begun with the new Moon of February 21, so hopefully good seeds were planted during that time. Regardless, the fruits and flowers of our labor should shine for us during this time as we rest and prepare for the upcoming Mercury retrograde cycle.

Mercury Retrograde March 12 - April 3

Mercury turns retrograde at 12° Pisces just after midnight on March 12, backpaddling through the early degrees of Pisces and resuming direct motion at 29° Aquarius on April 3.

There are several constant factors when Mercury takes a retrograde cycle. First, all retrograde planets are just a bit stronger, more themselves if that's possible, when they are retrograde. Therefore, we receive excessive expression of Mercury's energy during a retrograde cycle. Second, because Mercury's energy is very strong, things mercurial such as communication and transportation can get muddied, causing things to not run smoothly, as expected. Third, a week prior to and a week after the retrograde cycle are likely to be similar, so its a good idea to avoid very important actions during this roughly five week period.

Very important actions are things like signing a significant contract, getting married, opening a business, receiving surgery or laying foundations. Mercury retrograde times are better for editing, reviewing and refining rather than beginning new ventures.

In addition, Mercury is in a debilitated state while in Pisces. Much in the way that its hard to understand underwater verbal communication, it can be hard for Mercury to express clearly while in Pisces. Suggested remedies for this condition include:

  • choose silence and a contemplative state of mind during this period
  • take extra time to review what you are going to present verbally or through writing
  • do not rush through anything, including routine, mundane tasks
  • expect the unexpected and maintain detachment to avoid irritation and disappointment
  • remember that Mercury rules humor and flexibility
  • do not overschedule
  • slow down!

Sun Enters Pisces March 14

The Sun moves out of opposition with Mars and into Pisces on March 14, transiting through the final sign of the zodiac and exiting to Aries on April 13. The Sun joins retrograde, debilitated Mercury in Pisces, and they both remain in Pisces through the end of March.

The Sun, while not opposite to Mars while in Pisces, still receives an aspect from Mars in Leo, the Sun's sign. These two very active, fiery and powerful planets are working in tandem to bring our attention to our own inherent sources of power. Mars and Sun challenge us to review what is in place as the source of our energy, to keep what is working, to transform that which can be useful if refined and to discard that which doesn't support a prosperous use of energy.

Pisces is a realm of dissolution. It's watery and vast, like the ocean. When we paddle out into that infinity, it gives us a very cosmic perspective that can sometimes allow us to see our obstacles, choices and desires through a different lens. While the Sun is in Pisces we are reminded that anything is possible, and in a similar way, that we are able to make anything possible.

While Mars in Leo is creating a focus on the self, the Sun in Pisces begs the question: Who am I, anyway?

New Moon in Pisces March 22

As the Sun rises on the morning of Thursday, March 22, it is joined by the Moon and Mercury for the beginning of a new lunar cycle in Jupiter's water sign, Pisces. Pisces is the final sign of the zodiac, so it is a place of transformation from end to beginning; we are taken to the field of infinite possibility where we can choose what to keep and what to discard for our next cycle.

Jupiter and Venus occupy Aries, the second house from the new Moon, indicating that projects initiated under the auspices of this new Moon could be financially good, but perhaps not easy in coming due to the three retrograde planets, Mercury, Mars (ruler of that 2nd house) and Saturn. The implication of deliberation, rebirth and focused efforts comes forth as we move through this new lunar cycle.

This need for action balanced between expansion and contraction is further indicated by this conjunction occurring in the lunar mansion of Uttara Bhadrapada, which is ruled by Saturn. We receive Saturn's influence (contraction, restraint) via the lunar mansion and Jupiter's influence (expansion, growth) via the rulership of the sign of Pisces. We can use Saturn to detach from the old and Jupiter to grow toward the new as we cycle.

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