The descriptions we often attribute to Mars are of brute strength and aggressiveness, and at other times we picture this planet as representing violence and rage. But is there something that goes deeper than this? Could all of the attributes we assign to Mars stem from one source, and could that source be nothing other than survival?
Life On Mars?
The violence we often attribute to Mars shows up rather dramatically when we look at the surface of this planet. In the past Mars has been severely injured and perhaps nearly destroyed. Today, in contrast to it's geological history, Mars could be considered a dead planet. At one time in the remote past, in human years, but perhaps fairly recently in geological time, it is theorized that Mars had surface water in the form of rivers and lakes. It's atmosphere was more dense and would have been able to support life as we know it. Whatever kind of life Mars did support we cannot know until humans actually step foot on Mars and study the rocks and soils for organic traces. What we do know about Mars comes from telescopes and orbiting satellites. We also know that meteorites that have struck earth have been fragments of the Martian surface, and that these meteorites reveal an organic presence. How odd, it seems, and what are the chances that a stray fragment of the Martian surface ejected out into space would actually strike the Earth? Well, as you will see, the odds may not be as great as you would think!
A Call To Actions
As astrologers we think of Mars as the warrior of the solar system and a great many of the astrological descriptions for Mars centre around the war like quality, the aggressive behavior or the call to action we attribute to this planet. The most common feature of any warrior is the evidence of battle scars. Apart from the usual evidence shared by all celestial bodies there are geological features of the Martian surface that depict a battle of galactic proportions. What follows is a description of the main features of the surface of Mars.
The surface of Mars is divided into two main hemispheric regions that lie about 35º offset from the equator. This line of dichotomy, as it is called, runs completely around the planet and is characterized by a sudden escarpment that drops some 3 kilometers in elevation at the northern rim of the dichotomy. It is also characterized by the sheer number of impact craters to the south of this line. In the northern portion there are very few impact craters, and it appears as though the outer crust in this hemisphere is no longer present. One theory is that this portion of the Martian surface has been thrown off into space. This theory is based upon physical evidence and is not unlike a detective piecing together clues to describe a crime. In this case it is the description of a battle zone.
Part of the evidence has been stated in mentioning the large number of impact craters in the southern region. Other evidence is shown in three massive craters that lie also in the southern region. The names of these craters are Hellas, Insidis and Argyre - the deepest and widest impact craters yet found in the solar system. Hellas is 1600 kilometers wide by 2000 kilometers long. Isidis is 1000 kilometrs across and Argyre is 630 kilometers across.
From known impact craters on Earth we can assess the size of these three projectiles that slammed into Mars. We know that an object 10 kilometers in diameters can make a crater on Earth nearly 200 kilometers wide. By comparison then, the Hellas crater would have been caused by a projectile 100 kilometers in diameter; Isidis at 50 kilometers and Argyre at 36 kilometers. This is the factual information about these massive craters, so lets bring it on home and get a sense of the real forces involved here.
K/T Boundary Event
Sixty-five million years ago an object of 10 kilometers across impacted Earth and created what we now call the K/T boundary event that marked the end of the dinosaurs. It crashed into the Yucatan Peninsula with a force estimated to be 1000 times more powerful than all of the nuclear armaments stockpiled today. From this impact the life on earth was changed forever. If the same event took place today it would end our current civilization. Many people were fearful of the Y2K bug that, in their minds at least, threatened to turn out the lights and thrust us back into darkness and chaos. A meteorite 10 K in diameter would do all of that and more. It is even harder to imagine what would happen to our Earth if we were to collide with an asteroid that measured 100 K in diameter.
One War or Many?
Further evidence on the Martian surface of a cosmic collision is revealed in what is known as the Tharsis Bulge. This is a bulging outward in the northern portion of the planet that is in direct opposition to the impacts in the south. The Meranaris trench suggests that Mars experienced forces strong enough to nearly rip the planet in two. We can ask ourselves if these injuries to Mars are the result of many different battles, or are they the injuries of one disaster? The question begs to be asked because, as was mentioned earlier, the line of dichotomy shows that there is a huge discrepancy in the number of impact craters between these two regions. It is not an unreasonable conclusion that Mars was struck by a huge asteroid or a comet that broke up just prior to impact creating three large projectiles along with hundreds of smaller one. This could be likened to a shotgun blast against a clay ball. But, unlike a clay ball, many planets are created in layers that comprise a crust, some geological divisions (continents, mountain ranges, and tectonic plates.) along with an inner core that may or may not be molten. A cosmic shotgun blast could explain all of the catastrophic injuries that are described above.
If all the evidence points to one cosmic collision then it is a truly frightening event and the Earth may well give thanks to Mars for being the brave warrior and stepping into the path of the marauding invader. The injuries to Mars are the most devastating of any found in the solar system to date. Although some people may assume that there could be similar injuries to our own planet that could now be disguised by the earth's oceans, or through land erosion from weather, or even by seismic activity, but there just isn't any evidence of this. And with something this explosive there would have to be evidence if it had happened. No, Mars has the distinction of being the warrior and doing what warriors do which is getting injured in a fight for survival through heroic action.
The Plains of Cydonia
If that were the whole story then it would be interesting enough in itself and it does add a good deal to the astrological significance of Mars, but it is not the whole story. So far we can attribute a parallel between the battle scars on Mars and the human emotions of anger, rage, courage and the raising of the life force energy in a fight for survival. There are other significant discoveries about Mars that represent emotions that are not associated with Mars but perhaps should be. Sadness and grief are two of the emotions that come to mind but they didn't just occur to me out of thin air. The realization came from viewing the evidence and the legacy that was left behind on the northern plains of Cydonia.
A Tearful Face
NASA has sent satellites to Mars and one of these satellites had the purpose of orbiting and mapping Mars. In this process of photographing and mapping the surface of Mars it was discovered that in the northern hemisphere of Mars, on a site known as the plains of Cydonia there stand a human face that looks out to the heavens. There are those that sat up and took notice of this face and came to the logical conclusion that it is an artificial structure, and there are those, including NASA, that claim it is only a trick of light and shadows. I say that it is a logical conclusion that the face is an artificial structure because it simply makes more sense. The alternative is to suppose that the face is a product of erosion on a planet with little atmosphere or that it's appearance is the result of an illusion created by light and shadow. Some of the remarkable features of this face that were discovered through photo enhancement was the decorative headdress, if that's what it is, and the tear on the cheek of the face.
Fear & Credibility
There are a few simple reasons why people would prefer to believe that this face is an illusion and not real, or that it is a natural phenomenon and not an artful creation. In the case of NASA they have to be careful what they subscribe to because their credibility is at stake if it turns out false. For many others it is a situation where they prefer the belief that the human race is the most intelligent and most evolved of all God's creations, or it is just too scary to think that we are not alone in the cosmos.
Reading the Face
Taking the point of view that it is more logical and probable that the face is real and that it is an artful creation I would like to raise a couple more questions. Why was it created? Why create a face? Why was it created at that location? Before attempting to answer these questions I want to point out the obvious and perhaps the not so obvious. The most obvious feature is that the face is looking up from the surface of the planet. If it were looking out across the horizon of the planet, such as the Sphinx does in Egypt then it is quite likely that the satellite mapping of Mars could have missed the structure entirely. It is highly significant that the face is looking upward because it suggests that the structure was not created for any inhabitants of Mars as it can only be seen as a face from above. We can safely assume that we are the targeted audience because we are the ones seeing it right now and we do not know of any other peoples or aliens at the present time that we could include as an audience.
One & Billions
In the vast, vast scheme of things we reside within a rather unremarkable spiral galaxy among countless other galaxies. And somewhere two thirds of the way out from the center of this ordinary galaxy and passing back and forth through one of the spiral arms we find a solar system with nine planets. On two of the adjacent planets there is a human face. One of these planets has billions of living human faces and the other has just one made of stone. Out of the vastness of our universe just whom do you think is the audience and just what is the message in this drama?
The Missing Link?
Perhaps we'll get to that question but first let me ask "Why a face?" The answer to this question is quite simple and quite obvious. If you wanted to send a message through time or space and you wanted that message to be seen you would use a human face. What would be the point of using the imaginary face of an alien being? It is only natural to stick with what you know. On the other hand, if this face was constructed by aliens (somehow this seems likely) then they must have had Earthlings in mind or else these aliens are human also. Oh no! Maybe we've been looking for the missing link on the wrong planet! There is one thing for sure in all of this and that is that there is infinite room for speculation, and need I remind you that this is exactly what I am doing.
Location, Location, Location
What significance is there to the location? I am not concerned about the degrees of longitude and latitude at this point, although a study of that would also reveal some rather interesting information. My question is in regards to the fact that the face resides in the northern region that appears to have lost its outer crust or mantle. If we believe that the face is an artful creation we would have to wonder by whom? After all, the cataclysm that destroyed any visible forms of life on Mars had already happened and had also thrown half of the planet's mantle off into space, and in all likely-hood blew away most of the atmosphere with it. So, somebody landed on Mars long enough to build the face and a handful of other geometric structures I haven't even alluded to until now, and they did this after the destruction took place. The obvious significance of the location is that it confirms that either intelligent life escaped the destruction and returned, or that intelligent life witnessed the tragedy and saw fit to construct a memorial.
"Hello" From Spirit
This face is the face of spirit. A human spirit or otherwise, but a spirit nonetheless. Ageless and eternal and in human years they are without number, and at the core of every one of us is exactly the same thing. This is why it touches us and causes us to pause in mid stride. The awareness provides a stirring that is both exuberating and somewhat fearful for our minds and emotions. We are being hailed, we are been said "hello" to from an ancient past that is brand new in this moment. Such is the awesome power of spirit to communicate a message over time and over space and cause us to listen. Are you listening?
Life Force Energy
If you listen close to Mars you may hear and feel things that you have not, as yet, associated with this planet. You may feel sadness and remorse, you may feel grief and the role of victim. You may feel tired and weary and at a desperate place. These emotions are not usually associated with the 'red' planet and yet I have to ask, "Why not?" How long will you tolerate feeling like a victim before you get angry? What about a terrible loss by destruction leading to grief? After strenuous exercise or completing a task we most often feel tired, even weary if it was a prolonged task. Athletes being rejected or cut from the roster often leads to sadness.
Why, I wonder, have these emotions never been associated with Mars in the horoscope? As with so many things in life the ailment usually contains the cure. The cure for depression is often action of some kind. Not allowing yourself to be victimized often means revealing your anger, which may also be a sign of courage. Grief is undoubtedly the hardest emotion to deal with in our North American society. Grief is a male emotion that our society has only recently given some permission for men to express. In this case putting on a brave front is not the answer. The old macho image is slowly fading and allowing men to honestly express grief without the label of sissy being attached.
I believe that if you look at Mars in the horoscope and question what injuries have been associated with its placement and aspects you will tap into the sadness that goes along with those injuries or sacrifices. And perhaps it is, at times, an overwhelming sadness that leads some people to continue the vicious cycle of injury to sadness to injury again.
Recognition of Courage
The vicious cycle of injury and violence is graphically displayed on the Martian surface and it does fit very neatly with our astrological delineation of this planet, as we so often think of Mars in terms of injury and violence. Is there also an intelligent message of truly cosmic proportions that stares back at us from the surface of Mars? If we believe that the 'face' and the other structures on the plains of Cydonia are of intelligent design how might this embed itself into any astrological delineation of Mars? Do these structures on Mars offer a spiritual recognition for the courage and the ultimate sacrifice in a fight for survival?
I cannot answer these questions for you, but I do know that healing in the body can be aggresive and strengthening. I also know that courage can be dangerous as well as necessary for survival. And I would look for a healing spiritual presence to mark my injuries and sacrifices in the name of triumph.
This article was inspired by the book "The Mars Mystery", by Graham Hancock. It is published in paperback in Canada by Doubleday. For information contact: Seal Books, 105 Bond Street, Toronto, Ont. M5B 1Y3.
The author of the "Mars Mystery" provides a 'wake up' call to mankind in providing an awareness of the possible perils of asteroids and comets on earth crossing paths. I have not furthered that cause, but perhaps this article piques your interest in reading "The Mars Mystery", which I highly recommend.