Mercury opposes Mars today — a potentially volatile, challenging aspect feeding us directly into the cardinal grand cross (which is exact in one week, but we’re ‘in it’ now). At its most basic, Mercury opposite Mars says: talk it out, don’t argue it out.
Exact at 7:15 am EDT, this is a continuation of Mercury on the cardinal grand cross (it aspected Uranus, Pluto and Jupiter Monday). Mercury is in Aries, across the zodiac from retrograde Mars in Libra.
The ‘horns’ on Mercury’s glyph signify fleetness of mind, yet in Aries, they also echo the ram’s horns. We can translate that into being headstrong, especially regarding ideas about oneself.
Mars in Libra can feel spread thin or diffused; imagine that person you know who is always trying to do everything but never seems to make efficient progress with any one thing. Retrograde in Libra, Mars is even more confounded. Mars wants more than simply to discover and understand the roots of our relationship tendencies; it wants to do something about what we find.
At its worst, Mercury opposite Mars is the perfect setup for frustrated desires and goals to get projected onto relationships with others; for subconscious hostility to come shooting out in a blaze of self-righteous combativeness; for actual physical accidents when behaving rashly or impulsively. It’s all accusation and reaction, but no reflective ‘I statements’.
There is a strong caution here to be aware of your frustrations with yourself, especially if you’re inclined to blame someone else. Feel like acting out? Look within. What are you really angry about?
At its best, you can use Mercury-Mars to achieve your goals if you direct your energy well. Note that “directing your energy well” does not mean breathing fire at your well-meaning lover, slamming the door on your way out of the boss’s office, or using a minor irritation as an excuse to spew 10 years’ worth of suppressed grievances at your neighbor.
“Directing your energy well” means using the self-awareness granted by Mercury (and which is being magnified by yesterday’s eclipse) to understand what is really going on. It means leaning on the diplomacy and humanity of Venus-ruled Libra to guide Mars toward some empathy — especially toward yourself, as well as toward any ‘adversaries’. It’s easy to forget that we behave most harshly toward others when we’re judging ourselves harshly.
Rob Hand suggests you can use this aspect constructively when asking others about your effectiveness in a particular activity — but you have to be truly open to receiving what they might say, and willing to grow from what you learn. The bigger astrological picture is demanding nothing less — in a conversational tone.