Tracing the shadow of astrology and art

Writing and Ritual

Jupiter Retrograde 2019

Jupiter stationed retrograde today, April 10, in the sign Sagittarius at 24°. The way the internet has made “retrograde” a buzzword might lead you to have some anxiety hearing that yet another planet is “going retrograde,” but as all the planets carry unique energies, so too are their transits, and how they impact us here on earth. 

Jupiter is, in Roman myth, the king of the gods. He rules over everything from Mount Olympus, throwing thunderbolts at his enemies, and visiting anyone and anything he pleases when the mood strikes him. The word “jovial” comes from Jupiter, as “Jove” is the Roman poetic equivalent of Jupiter. Carrying with it then, associations of kingliness, expansiveness, good cheer, and the optimism that comes from being unbothered by more mundane troubles unknown to such a powerful god, this planet is as astrological heavy-hitter, and his retrograde deserves our attention. 

This is not a typical retrograde. Jupiter has been in the sign he rules over, Sagittarius, since this past November, and since then themes of the sign have been amplified in a communal, collective sense. The pursuit of justice for all of us, a theme near and dear to both Sagittarius and Jupiter, is a recurring theme at this point in time. Jupiter in Sagittarius seeks to lift us all up to a place of higher alignment and self-knowing. Sagittarius is a mutable fire sign, symbolized by the centaur-archer. It is a sign of fiery intellectual power and curiosity, good natured passion for debate, and, as a mutable sign, Sagittarius is invested in the good of the group. Flexibility is a key component to this sign, and it is expressed in their mental agility. 

When Jupiter goes retrograde, it means that from our vantage point on earth, Jupiter seems to be moving backwards in the sky. With this in mind, if the planet is moving “backwards,” our relationship to the themes of the planet are also prevented from moving forward. 

Jupiterian themes are justice, learning, philosophy, spirituality, expansion, excess, growth, optimism, travel, and a brave engagement with the new, the foreign, the unknown. This planet wants us to continue to learn, to push past the boundaries of our expectations, and to continue to enrich our minds over the course of our lifetime. It is a planet of wisdom, purpose, and exploration for the sake of learning—and learning through doing. 

With Jupiter retrograde, we are called now to stop trying to tick millions of things off our to-do lists. This is a period of time where we are asked to first and foremost take stock of our growth. Ask yourself where you are at this point in time, how you got there, and what you’ve learned. Consider the ways your growth has been helped or hindered by your relationship to institutions of higher learning, spirituality, learning in general. Engage your relationship to resources and how you use them, how this contributes to your feelings of “wealth,” “abundance,” “lack,” and “need.” How do your values line up with all of this? Are you on track with yourself? 

This is a time to take a step back from the busy world (easier said than done, I know), and to find a sweeter, more productive connection to all of the above. Jupiter retrograde is gently asking you to make sure you are connected to your power source. If there are things that have slipped through the cracks, or that you have neglected along the way, this is a beautiful moment to reconnect with that material and bring it back into the fold. 

Take a look at your natal chart, and see what house Sagittarius rules. This is the area of life that Jupiter’s retrograde will impact most directly, and this can help guide you in terms of understanding these themes. 

Jupiter is retrograde from now until August 10. This is a long, slow retrograde, and it happens once a year! 

On April 15th, Venus will square off with Jupiter, bringing a little touch of anxiety to our relationship to consumption, finances, and relationships. This is a really good day to use that retrograde energy as a reminder to be aware of your consumption habits, and to move in balance with the universe, both physically and emotionally.

May 2nd brings us a trine between Mercury and Jupiter, making this a powerful day for checking in with yourself around your style of communication and the effectiveness of your use of language and intellect. On the 5th, Mars opposes Jupiter, making us warm, brave, and combative. Since Jupiter is retrograde, there is a tendency here to get carried away by delusions of grandeur, so make sure you are rooted in place, my dears. The 9th of May brings us Venus trine Jupiter, and this will be a day to check in with your relationship to self-love, self-care, and your sense of generosity for yourself. 

June 10th sees the Sun oppose Jupiter, bringing attention to the main themes of Jupiter’s retrograde and how they impact your ego at this time. Check in with yourself today, about halfway through the transit. Ask yourself about your relationship to abundance, and how you can cultivate better use of your own personal power. On the 16th Jupiter will square off with Neptune, and this will be an intense day of possible confusion, illusion, and fantasy. Keep your wits about you on this day, for sure. 

On the 25th of July, Mars will trine Jupiter, and this will be an empowering, powerful day. As Jupiter is nearing the end of his retrograde, it will be a perfect thing for us to start considering our relationship to Jupiter’s themes, and how we put them into action (Mars) in our lives. We’ll want to be making progress at this point, but due to the retrograde energy, this might be a little difficult.

On the 7th of August the Sun trines Jupiter, and we again have an opportunity to feel empowered, to feel like Jove himself, but with a reflective tone, as retrograde winds down. 

This will be a really interesting transit for us all. I’d love to know how you’re experiencing it on your own time. Remember that retrogrades are here to help us realign with our sense of purpose, and that can only be a good thing for us humans living in this busy and wild world. 

Christina Farella