This webpage offers three sections:
1. Guidelines to the effects that are manifested when each transiting planet turns Retrograde.
2. The summary of the approximate periods of Retrograde Motion for each planet.
3. Techniques for Interpreting the effect of a Retrograde Planet in our lives.
1. Guidelines to the effects manifested when each transiting planet turns Retrograde:
Mercury: When Mercury turns retrograde in the heavens, we will all experience problems, but how bad our experience will be, will depend on our rising sign and the status of our own Mercury in our own natal chart. These problems will manifest in the area of speech and expression, posts and communications, IT, siblings, the affairs of the House Mercury is transiting, and the affairs of the Houses that Mercury occupies and rules in your birth chart.
Venus: When Venus is transiting Retrograde barriers can be felt for the beautiful expression of love. Behaviours may arise that are problems for love in your life, showing that you love needs to be healed. Venus is the Karaka/indicator for wife in a man’s chart. We may realise that we need to do healing or transformation work.
Mars: when Mars is transiting retrograde, we may find it hard to take needed action. Feeling of frustration or block can lead to irritability, arguing or even violence. Brothers could be affected. It will be good to do work with the Divine Warrior that is the divine dimension of Mars.
Jupiter: When Jupiter is retrograde, our connection to Guru energy, inspiration or blessing is reduced. We need to take special remedial action to re-strengthen our connection to Divine Jupiter.
Saturn: When Saturn is Retrograde, this creates fear (at least burst of fear), burst of depression (or even deeper depression). We are grimly and unavoidably forced to tie up loose ends and complete undone jobs. We are compelled to be methodical and patient and diligent, and if we obey these commands of Lord Shani, then we will experience golden reaping in that area of our life. Possibility for death experiences, loss, separation and disease are even greater during Saturn’s retrograde period. Saturn’s transit known as Sade Sate (the 7.5 yr. period that Saturn transits your natal moon, and also Ashtama Shani (Saturn’s transit through 8th House, and also Saturn’s transit through 22nd Drekkana and 64th Navamsha are very dangerous, and the effect even more so when Saturn is Retrograde during these types of transit.
Uranus: When transiting Uranus is Retrograde, we are compelled to acknowledge the need for revolution in an area of our life, and to avoid suffering, and to reap rewards, we need to bring in that needed Revolution. The change is often very abrupt and may be totally unusual and different to our usual way of thinking and acting.
Neptune: When Transiting Neptune is Retrograde, we can be horrifically made aware of the illusory nature of our visions and dreams, or develop amnesia as to areas of sensitivity and vision that we actually need to keep hold of. OR we can be compelled to realize our dreams and visions in the manifest world, or horrifically suffer the loss of them. Neptune Retrograde calls us to cease any escapism.
Pluto: when Pluto is Retrograde, our wounds and fears may surface to be faced and healed. Control scripts will surface to be healed. This is the time for a Journey to the Abyss. Like Persephone, like Ishtar. If we do not succeed in passing our wounds weights and sorrows to the Keeper of The Abyss, we will continue blocked from the fuller reception of the Divine Light and energy that we are actually capable of. We will drift on embodying wounds guilts and secrets, rather than embodying the Divine Light.
Chiron: Sense of your wounds will surface strongly. Pain will be felt. This is your time to acknowledge old, wounds, allow them to surface and to heal them and change that area of your life. do not be in denial. Do not avoid the needed healing and transformation work. This is a healing crisis: we will feel worse before we can be better. Chiron is our existential wound. In the healing of our existential wound, we can become the healer of others.
2. Secondly, here is a summary of the approximate periods of Retrograde Motion for each planet:
Mercury 20 days, and 3-4 retrogradations per year.
Venus 42 days, occurring every 18 months.
Mars 60 – 80 days, occurring every 24 – 26 months.
Jupiter 4 mths, occurring every 9 months
Saturn 4-5 mths, occurring every 8 months
Uranus, Neptune and Pluto retrograde for around 5 months, occurring every 7 months.
The length of time a planet remains in a sign affects the power of the effect of its transit.
3. Thirdly, here is a statement of the effect of a Retrograde Planet, and how to interpret its effect in our lives:
When a planet transits Retrograde, through a House/Sign in our birth chart or in aspect to one of the planets in our birth chart, we experience that planet’s energy in an odd way, and with special difficulties.
This can make us feel tense or uneasy, or even make us suffer. And the divine purpose of this difficulty or suffering, is for us to ‘get our act together’ with the way we understand or experience the energy of that transiting planet. This retrograde transit time includes the need for reflection and growth in consciousness and awareness. The House the planet is retrograding through shows us the life area that must be changed.
Here are some of the factors to bear in mind when you are trying to understand the impact of a retrograde transiting planet in the heavens in your consciousness, and in your life:
a. With all retrograde planets, the slower the motion of the retrograde planet in the heavens, the deeper he will carve his effect on us. So, if the planet is very slow/stationary, and just turning retrograde (or stationing and just turning direct), his energy will carve much deeper in our lives, than if he has faster motion in the heavens.
And remember, in Vedic Astrology ‘strong’ does not at all always equal ‘good’.
b. The Houses that the retrograde planet rules in your birth chart will receive adverse affect.
c. The significations of the retrograde planets as well as the significations of the Houses it rules, will be adversely affected. The Sanskrit word used for significations is ‘karakas’ or indicators.
d. When a malefic planet is retrograde, it generally has more strength to cause bad effects. But of course, we can seek and try to turn this strength to our good.
e. Generally speaking, transits are felt most strongly in the 1st, 4th, 7th and 10th Houses. These are the Kendra or angular Houses.
f. When we are in the Dasha period of a planet and that planet turns retrograde, the results of the Dasha period will be affected.
g. Note that Retrograde planets can have mixed effects, some of hem useful, others of them upsetting.
h. The Nakshatra that Retrograde Mercury is transiting through will be affected, and the two other Nakshatras with the same ruler will also feel an effect.
i. It helps to look at the Navamsha position of the retrograde planet (The D9 Varga chart), and compare this to the planet’s position in the rashi birth chart, so as to establish the type and quality of the soul message we receive from that planet.
Want some pointers as to how to Analyse a Transit’s Effect in your Life?
See my Video, read my Blog post: how to Analyse a Transit’s Effect in your Life: