Uranus is sometimes known in astrology as the Great Awakener – this planet’s surprising, shocking energy is often the catalyst for breakthroughs in our self-understanding and our spiritual growth. Uranian energy can be chaotic, however, and hard to deal with – but during Uranus retrograde periods, we get another bite at the cherry; another chance to deal with the shock and awe we were so taken aback by the first time around.
What Happens When Uranus is Retrograde?
Retrograde motion means moving backwards, so when we say that Uranus is retrograde, we mean that, as seen from earth, the planet seems to be moving backwards through the sky. This is an optical illusion, similar to when one car overtakes another and the overtaken car, seen from the faster car, seems to fall backwards even though it’s still moving forwards. Uranus never actually moves backwards.
Astrology is a language of symbolism, however, so when a planet turns retrograde and appears to move backwards, symbolically this reflects a subtle change in the planet’s energy in our astrological charts too.
Uranus spends around 5 months of every year in retrograde motion, so it’s retrograde for approximately 40% of the time. This means that around 40% of people are born during a Uranus retrograde period – when this happens, we say that you have a natal Uranus retrograde in your birth chart.
All of us are affected to a greater or lesser extent by each Uranus retrograde period, whether or not Uranus was retrograde at birth. If the part of sky Uranus retrogrades through is particularly significant in your own natal chart, you may feel this quite keenly; at other times, not so much.
What Is the Importance of Uranus Retrograde in Astrology?
In astrology, Uranus represents change – especially sudden, dramatic change. These energies are also connected with shock, innovation, revolution, freedom and wildness. This most unpredictable of planetary energies is known for being, well, unpredictable.
It’s sometimes helpful to think of Uranus like a bolt of electricity. At the wrong time, in the wrong place, this can kill, burn or seriously harm. At the right time, in the right place, properly channeled, it can light up our lives and reveal our true brilliance.
During Uranus retrograde, some of the shock and awe factor of Uranian energy is dissipated, so we feel calmer and more able to think about what Uranus is showing us. For this reason, Uranus retrograde is a good time to get out of a rut in your life. Careful consideration of the area of the birth chart where Uranus is in retrograde will give a clue about where the problem lies and will also suggest how you can bring about positive change.
Uranus Retrograde in the Natal Chart
Because 40% of people are born with Uranus retrograde in the natal chart, this is not a significant astrological factor in itself. However, if Uranus in your chart is very close to or makes an important aspect to your Ascendant, Sun, Moon or ruling planet, the influence can be much more personalized and keenly felt in your life.
Those with a strong Uranus retrograde in the birth chart may struggle to fully express what Uranus truly represents – freedom, independence and human will. There could be a lifelong struggle with authority but being a rebel without a cause can lead to instability and depression in life. Where it’s strong in a birth chart, Uranus retrograde may need careful channeling to enable the individual to shine brightly instead of burning themselves up.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting the Astrological Houses
When it comes to retrograde planets, the zodiac sign the planet is traveling through gives us an overall flavor of what to expect, but this changes during each retrograde motion period. For a better insight into what to expect during a Uranus retrograde transit period, we look at which astrological house the planet is moving through.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 1st House
Let your eccentricities show! During this period, reflect on something which made you feel punished for being an individual. Can you see now how you can turn your individuality into a strength rather than a weakness?
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 2nd House
This is a chance to move beyond materialism and to re-think your relationship with money. Finances may be stretched during this retrograde period, but Uranus prompts changes which help you to realize you can cope – with far less than you ever thought you needed.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 3rd House
Say what you really think! As Uranus retrogrades in your house of communication, reflect on a time when you held your tongue and then regretted it. There are ways and means of speaking out tactfully, but speak out you should.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 4th House
This is a breathing space during some dramatic family or household changes. If you didn’t ask for or wish for these changes, you may feel overwhelmed and resentful, but this retrograde period is a chance to see the hidden blessings such changes bring.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 5th House
Allow your inner child to play! Uranus retrograde here is a reminder that you’ve been taking life too seriously. Enjoy a walk on the wild side, even if it shocks others. In fact, especially if it shocks others. This energy is about pleasing yourself and only yourself.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 6th House
This is serious get-out-of-your-rut energy and it brings you the chance to shake up your daily routines, your timetable, your lifestyle. The scale of change necessary may feel scary, but if you take it bit by bit, you’ll find that you can make large changes without losing your mind.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 7th House
No matter how much in love you may be, you’re still an individual and you still need your own space. During this retrograde, find gentle ways to enjoy some freedom from your lover. You’re not joined at the hip and this energy will help you overcome jealousy.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 8th House
This retrograde period can bring a shake up in who holds the power, especially in a relationship. If you’ve suffered abuse, reach for help and get out, using Uranus’ strength and bravery. In a happy relationship, consider switching up the household responsibilities.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 9th House
This could be a period of relative calm during some major travel plans or changes in lifestyle. It’s a chance to plan ahead – a little, not too much – and to adjust to a new pace or a fresh philosophy of life. Start to find your feet again.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 10th House
A career related shock may have left you reeling, but this retrograde period shows you how to quietly and calmly reclaim the high ground. Reign in your desire to be reckless; re-find your determination and your ambition. It’s nearly time.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 11th House
See through the labels on other people, and demand that others stop labeling you too. Socially, this is an innovative period, ideal for meeting a new tribe of like-minded souls. Existing friendships, however, may need some serious readjustment.
Uranus Retrograde Transiting 12th House
Pay attention to the weird coincidences happening around you, the sensations you dismiss and the things you see out of the corner of your eye. Psychic and spiritual energies surround you, but you haven’t been listening. Start listening now.