planets retrograde 20162016 is the year of the Hermit card – a year of completion, reflection and review, and coming to purity and truth.

So it is no surprise that we have a lot of planetary retrogrades this year. Retrogrades are about taking some time inwards to reflect and refine before taking outward action again.

And this parallels the energy of the Hermit card, with its withdrawn and contemplative nature.

For the month of May, we are experiencing 5 planets in retrograde all at once!

What exactly are each of these retrogrades about, and how can we use these events to our advantage?

Here are some insights I’ve come up with through my readings, and contemplations with the cards that correspond to the astrological placements.

9 of pentaclesJupiter Retrograde (Jan 7 – May 9) – “What is Valuable To You?”

January 7th

  • 23 degrees Virgo
  • Corresponding Card: 10 of Pentacles – “Wealth”

May 9th 2016

  • 13 degrees Virgo
  • Corresponding Card: 9 of Pentacles- “Gain”

Card Pulls For Jupiter Retrograde:

  • 3 of Pentacles
  • 8 of Pentacles

Jupiter is a planet of fortune.

Virgo is the last Earth sign, signifying the last process of materialization.

The 10 of Pentacles, also called “Wealth”, is a card of manifestation; the end of a process of materialization. Yet this is also a card of transition, and this denotes that there is also decay. This decay is symbolised by the man in the image. He is surrounded by his family and riches, and he is in reflection of his life and all that he has produced. He reflects with the question: What is valuable?

This retrograde is a time to ask yourself the same question: What is valuable?

Reflect on the things you have materialized in your life. What really matters? Is your perspective on that changing? Reflect on how you would like to move forward.

When we come out of the retrograde, we will be in the energy of the The 9 of Pentacles/“Gain”. This card shows a wealthy woman in a lavish setting. She is enjoying the fruits of her labor.

Also, the 8 of Pentacles and the 3 of Pentacles have in common the theme of building and constructing.

Again, a question to ask yourself after the retrograde is: What do I want to work on and build in my life?

Also – What am I willing to work hard for? And what ‘riches’ have I already materialized, that I am thankful for?

ace_swordsMercury Retrograde (April 28 – May 22) – “Self-Empowering Thoughts”

April 28th

  • 23 degrees Taurus
  • Corresponding Card: 7 of Pentacles – “Failure”/“Success Unfulfilled”

May 22nd

  • 14 degrees Taurus
  • Corresponding Card: 6 of Pentacles- “Success”/“Material Success”

Card Pull:

  • Ace of Swords

Mercury is a planet of thought.

Taurus, on an esoteric level, is about vibration.

We start the retrograde period facing the energy of “Failure” and “Success Unfulfilled”. We are asked to confront what’s not working for us. The Ace of Swords signifies our thoughts, and the potential of what comes from them. Our thoughts form our vibrations. Our words, as well.

This retrograde gives us all the opportunity to choose more empowering thoughts that will help us to move from the vibration of failure to the vibration of success and harmony, so that we may create more of that in our lives.

For some of us, this may also have to do with the way we think, and our self-worth.

10cups2Mars Retrograde (April 17 – June 29) – “What Do I Really, Truly Want?”

April 17th

  • 9 degrees Sagittarius
  • Corresponding Card: 8 of Wands/ “Swiftness”

June 29th

  • 23 degrees Scorpio
  • Corresponding Card: 7 of Cups/“Illusory Success”

Card Pull:

  • 10 of Cups/“Satiety”

Mars is a planet of drive.

The 8 of Wands is about swift movement.

Mars likes to move towards what drives it quickly, yet we retrograde in this position. The retrograde asks us to halt in our steps.

The 10 of Cups shows a transition.

During the retrograde a question to ask yourself is: What do I really, truly want?

The 7 of Cups is about illusion. All that glitters is not necessarily gold.

We come out of the retrograde in the energy of the 7 of Cups, and this denotes a separation from the object of our desire. The desire within us still exists, but we may shift one object of pursuit for another. The intent of the retrograde is to help us to see beyond illusions, and to see what will really satisfy us instead.

Lust-the-Thoth-DeckPluto Retrograde (April 18 – Sept 26) – “What Are My Deep Desires?”

April 18th

  • 17 degrees Capricorn
  • Corresponding Card: 3 of Pentacles- “Works”

September 26th

  • 14 degrees Capricorn
  • Corresponding Card: 3 of Pentacles-“Works”

Card Pull:

  • Strength/Lust

Mars and Pluto retrograde within a day of one another. And both Mars and Pluto are rulers of Scorpio.

Scorpio is a sign of desire.

Pluto is a planet of transformation, rebirth and deep emotions.

The Strength/Lust card reflects this element of desire. Like with the Mars retrograde, the Pluto retrograde asks us to identify: What do we truly want deep inside?

The 3 of Pentacles represents the image of planning; of creating a blueprint and structuring and building. During this retrograde, we are asked to redefine and refine our plan. We are also then asked take on the role of architect, foreman and laborer. But we do not have to do it all ourselves. We can employ and ask others to help us.

This card also signifies the importance of maintaining our mental and physical health while we carry out our work. Strength is needed, and can be preserved by engaging in some team work.

The-Knight-of-CupsSaturn Retrograde (March 25 – Aug 13) – “What Am I Fighting For?”

March 25th

  • 16 degrees Sagittarius
  • Corresponding Card: 9 of Wands- “Great Strength”

August 13th

  • 9 degrees Sagittarius
  • Corresponding Card: 8 of Wands- “Swiftness”

Card Pull:

  • Knight of Cups

Saturn is a planet of responsibilities, duties, tasks and earned success through putting in the work that is needed.

Sagittarius is the archer, and is about hitting the mark, alignment and aim.

The Knight of Cups is the wooer and the pursuer of love. He’s the Don Juan of the Tarot deck, ardently pursuing his heart’s desire.

The 9 of Wands signifies tests of faith, endurance, stamina and persistence in the face of opposition. “Great strength” needs to be called upon to endure. But it is also important to know when to stop fighting; when it is time to move on. This is the question we are faced with when we encounter the 9 of Wands.

In the 8 of Wands we will find ourselves lighter, more empowered and mobilized. Is it because you have endured and stood firm during the trials? Or is it because you have realized it is time to let go?

This is what needs to be figured out..

I hope that these insights help! Thank you for reading.


About Ellie Brucia

Ellie Brucia is a tarot & oracle card reader, sound healer and lover of plant magic. She has recently published a plant-based, magical cookbook called “Cooking Up Magic”. Also known as The Mer Priestess, she offers sound healing events in London and tarot readings for clients online and in-person that help to promote spiritual, personal development.

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