What is a Retrograde exactly?
A retrograde is the visual and felt illusion of backwards movement from another planet. We know that all planets revolve around the sun in the same direction but, much like when a near by car may catch speed beside you and give the feeling that you are moving backwards so you hit the brakes, a retrograde works the same way. We can energetically feel this as a planet goes retrograde and things seem to be “crazy” or chaotic for the time the planet is retrograde. This energy shift is like us being made aware of the strange movement and hitting the breaks in life.
The energy that radiates from a retrograde happens in a bell-curve fashion with a pre-phase lasting about 1-2 weeks leading up to the retrograde, middle phase or actual retrograde, and then a post-phase where things return to “normal”. The pre-phase leading up to the retrograde is where we first begin to feel the shift in energy. At this point in time the things that need to be addressed during the retrograde may begin to present themselves. Problems, flags, and warning signs may arise such as arguments, small break downs in functionality, items go missing or break, or other things may occur that will set the tone for the retrograde. Once in the middle phase, things that came up in pre-phase get to show themselves completely. The argument may lead to break-ups or a loss of job, the break down in functionality will signal where there are serious holes in your foundations and projects and, things may need to be replaced or further addressed. This is also the longest lasting period giving optimal time to handle the blockages and lessons the retrograding planet is teaching. Finally, when the post-phase arrives, we begin to feel a sense of normalcy again or what has been changed will begin to become the new norm. A few more blockages and challenges can arise in post-phase but the energy to address them is a bit freer moving and may be easier to manage. Here we can close out any issues and continue forward.
The best way to handle a retrograde is to simply not fight what arises when it does. While this is a good practice to maintain anytime, its especially important during retrogrades as flowing with the energy can help with overcoming the challenges that present. Each planet rules or governs over specific areas in life. For example, Saturn rules logic, practicality, justice, structure, and organization. When Saturn goes retrograde, we may have to spend time reevaluating how we structure or organize our life, the rules we live by, and the meaning to justice. No better time to learn a lesson than during a retrograde though it may feel inconvenient.
Retrogrades are a great reminder that we don’t always get what we want, life has plenty of lessons in store, and to take pause to handle repairs and challenges much like you would stop driving a car and take it to the mechanic for a few days. Open yourself up to setbacks and changes of plans, it might turn out better than you expect.
Photos courtesy of universetoday.com and earth.com