Mars is the first planet outside of the orbit of the Earth and more like the Earth than any other planet we know, with even some form of primitive life recently discovered there. The orbit of Mars around the sun is a little less than two years, 687 days. Like all the planets outside the orbit of the Earth, its observed position does not stay near the sun, and it has a retrograde period when the Earth is passing it in its orbit.
Mars represents outward activity in contrast to the interior planets Venus and Mercury and the sun and moon which represent the emotions, mind, the conscious self, and the subconscious self respectively. Mars has a reddish appearance and is associated with fire and energy. It rules the first sign, Aries, the cardinal fire sign which is most active and initiating, and also Scorpio, the sign of sex and death.
Mars is symbolized by the male symbol derived from a sword and shield, representing the masculine principle in polarity to Venus, Earth's other next-door neighbor. The Sumerians and later the Babylonians associated this planet with Nergal, their god of war, death, and destruction. Mars is the Roman name for the Greek god of war, Aries.
In the body Mars correlates with the muscular system which enables us to move and work. The development of muscles is generally considered a more masculine trait. Psychologically Mars can relate to any kind of motivation but particularly desires. This is the energy that moves us to act.
As the archetype of war, fighting, and anger as well as action and work, Mars is considered the minor malefic, second in negativity to Saturn, the planet of fear. Mars represents the most active time of life before the middle age of Jupiter sets in and after the courtship years of romantic Venus. This is the phase of work and energetic action in the world and in some cases soldiering.
Mars is strongly associated with the color red, and those most influenced by Mars often prefer this color, whose vibration stimulates a sense of urgency to act and, like the appearance of spilt red blood, is often a sign of danger or an emergency.. Mars represents boldness, courage, zeal, initiative, and desire.
Mars in Aries is dignified and is forceful, active, courageous, self-assured, independent, direct, enterprising, and industrious. Desires are strong, ardent, impetuous. One is usually self-motivating, individualistic, adventurous, exploring, pioneering, frank, impulsive, masculine, and aggressive or assertive. One likes to start new things and often wants to be the leader.
Mars in Taurus is in detriment and has earthy desires, possessive affections, practical ability, hard work, and the ability to acquire wealth by effort. One's energy is usually strong, steady, determined, persevering, worldly, and perhaps stoical. Not easily aroused to anger, if it builds up it can explode and be as "mad as a bull." One often likes to spend money on pleasures, is usually aware of pleasure and pain, and strives for security.
Mars in Gemini has mental energy for learning, communicating, and competing. One's desire usually is to understand or spread awareness as a messenger or artist. One may be argumentative and intent on winning one's point. Often there is the ability to do two things at once, but split energies may make one nervous. Abilities are in adapting, alternating, observing, changing, and communicating. One may find oneself working with brothers, neighbors, or young men.
Mars in Cancer is fallen as its energy affects the feelings and emotions which are often strong with the problems of desires and anger. One may be protective in bold ways, battle one's feelings, and experience conflicts or zeal in loyalties. The environment may be harsh, and inner drives may be sensual or sublimated.
Mars in Leo gives dynamic, creative, and dramatic energy. Desires may be powerful, passionate, generous, and playful. This stimulates leadership, creativity, drama or performing. One tends to be hearty, fearless, chivalrous, frank, proud, and ardent.
Mars in Virgo gives energy for work, service, analysis, categorizing, and scientific activity. Desires may be sublimated or unawakened because of a desire to be pure, healthy, virtuous, or perfect. Energy tends to be disciplined, and one is usually efficient, practical, logical, adaptable, and healthy, though criticism may be biting and sarcastic, because one is so eager to make corrections or improvements.
Mars in Libra is in detriment stimulating a tendency to fight, battle, and argue with an opponent or adversary. One usually attempts to refine and harmonize in balance impulsive and passionate desires which are often directed toward the partner or spouse. One is often zealous for justice and what one considers fair, though one may compromise, conciliate, and cooperate.
Mars in Scorpio is dignified as the energy is passionate, emotional, forceful, determined, and intuitive. Desires tend to be sexual, keen at penetrating, investigating, detecting, and diagnosing, and may be psychic or mystical. Motivation is stimulated; one may work hard, be manipulating, or have mechanical ability.
Mars in Sagittarius is enthusiastic, optimistic, spontaneous, argumentative, frank, independent, and may be inspired or self-righteous. One often aspires for higher consciousness, or delights in intellectual activities, sports, or outdoor pursuits. One is usually willing to defend principles or one's religion or philosophy zealously. One likes to explore, and go on adventures.
Mars in Capricorn is exalted giving persistence, perseverance, ambition, drive, practicality, efficiency, and the desire to achieve, take responsibility, organize, control, plan, and carry out actions. One may be conscientious, business-like, energetic, and willing to work hard for long-term and high goals in order to gain position, reputation or even fame.
Mars in Aquarius gives mental energy, an active intellect that is scientific and humanistic, inventive, and independent. One usually wants to know and understand, will debate, and wishes to reform or change things by working with organizations or social movements. One likely will have many male associates, warm and impulsive friendships. Desire for freedom and innovation are strong motivations.
Mars in Pisces gives energy that is sympathetic, receptive, affectionate, and sensitive to imposition. One usually dislikes conflict or violence and desires to make peace and help others. Energy is emotional, adaptable, sensitive, sacrificing, sorrowful, and often diffused. One desires to overcome troubles, misfortunes and may be quite charitable as well as imaginative, poetic, and artistic with tendency to want to escape into a dream world.
Mars in the first house is dignified, giving the personality energy, assertiveness, courage, force, and passion. One is usually independent, outspoken, straightforward, dynamic, masculine, combative, audacious, and may be headstrong, impatient, reckless, and rash.
Mars in the second house is in detriment, putting energy into work, efforts to gain wealth or material possessions, and industriousness. Spending may be impulsive, and desires may be possessive. Voice is often masculine. One may be forceful about values, but is usually willing to work hard.
Mars in the third house stimulates the mind and learning to be energetic, alert, sharp, forceful, combative, and zealous. One may tend to be argumentative in speech and writing. Desire to learn and go to school can be strong. Travel and changes may be impulsive or restless. Brothers are often important, or conflicts with neighbors or in school may occur.
Mars in the fourth house is fallen as energy is directed toward the home life, family, and one's inner feelings and loyalties. One may work at home, or one's environment may have many activities. Conflict and anger may be present, giving one a desire for independence. One is often willing to fight for one's country or heritage.
Mars in the fifth house gives energy for children, play, speculation, romance, entertainment, and the creative arts. One is often bold, audacious, confident, adventurous, desires pleasures and fun. Sports and athletic exercise can be important. Will is strong, and romance may be impulsive.
Mars in the sixth house directs energy into work, employment, health, and household chores like cooking, cleaning, and so on. One is usually an energetic worker; health may be strong, but one should be careful of cuts and burns. One is usually industrious, scientific, skilled with technology, and efficient.
Mars in the seventh house is in detriment as partnership tends to be dynamic but possibly rash and quarrelsome. One may form partnerships with men or with a bold and forceful person. Relationships may be impetuous and impulsive with strong desires for sex or to work together.
Mars in the eighth house is dignified giving courage and boldness in cooperative actions, research, investigation, and psychic activities. Desire is directed toward the partner in sexuality or other resources of the partner.
Mars in the ninth house stimulates the intellect to be bold, adventurous, pioneering, and willing to fight for one's ideas, principles, and beliefs. One may want to travel and participate in sports and outdoor activities. One is often motivated to expand consciousness through philosophy or religion as well.
Mars in the tenth house is exalted stimulating ambition, industriousness, and an aggressive career. One may be resolute, forceful, and energetic in achieving success through one's own efforts. One often has a desire to conquer the world, overcome others, and achieve recognition.
Mars in the eleventh house gives energy for friendship and social organizations. One usually has strong hopes and wishes which could only be achieved through collective action. One makes friends impulsively but may have a tendency to quarrel. Many associates are likely to be male or from one's work and activities.
Mars in the twelfth house gives a desire to help others in unassuming and unrecognized ways as a social service. One may be particularly intrigued by the mystical and hidden occult things. One may also experience social institutions of confinement such as hospitals, prisons, and monasteries or retreats. One usually has the energy to fight one's way out of trouble or adversity.