Retrograde Planets

Retrograde planets in vedic astrology have always been a topic of numerous astrology debates, and they still keep opening new doors for further research.  

Like in the image, retrograde planet is a masked one - we have an idea whats behind the mask, but can never be sure enough.

Planets along with earth go around the Sun in their cyclic orbit. Normally moving forward, sometimes they seem to be moving backward. The backward appearing motion is their relative movement to earth, as earth is trying to catch up and move ahead of them. Since we analyze considering earth as the center point, during the catching up of earth in its orbit, the planet appears to become stationary and then moving backward. This backward moment of the planet is Retrograde motion and the planet in question is the Retrograde planet.

For example - When your train crosses a slow moving train, though both train are moving in same direction, the other appears to be moving backward, relative to your train.

- Luminaries are never Retrograde

- Nodes are always Retrograde

- Inferior planets Mercury and Venus appear to be retrograde when they are between Earth and Sun

- Superior planets Mars, Jupiter and Saturn appear to retrograde when they are opposite to the Sun.

Retrograde is 'Vakri' in Sanskrit, which means crooked, twisted, misleading, indifferent; similar are the traits we witness when planets go retrograde. Retrograde will not change the basic functional nature of the planet, but will certainly add it own flavor - an undesired twist. 

For example -  Jupiter is a planet of knowledge and intelligence which will be there depending on the placement; but if Jupiter is retrograde, then applying the knowledge or channeling the intelligence goes haywire.

Important points to consider  - 

- Retrograde planets specially the slow moving ones, indicate karmic debt, from past lives, specific to their functional nature and placement in the chart.

- Retrograde planets not necessarily signify negative results nor they reverse the functionality of the planets.

- Debilitated planet when Retrograde will not give result of a Exalted planet and vice-verse.

- Retrograde word resonates with Delay, so expect delays when the planet is retrograde.

- Direct and Retrograde planets will never give same results, so do not ignore retrogression of the planets while analyzing the horoscope.

- Benefic do not become malefic just because they are retrograde, and vice-verse. 

- Slow moving planets Jupiter and Saturn, when retrograde should be analyzed thoroughly. They have a deeper agenda attached to them than what meets the eye. Retrogression of planets has a deeper impact at psychological level, than in material pursuits.

- Retrograde planets have high Motional Strength or Cheshta bala, so the results are more prominent, in either direction.

- Dasha of Retrograde planets is almost never uneventful, and is very different from dasha on same planet in direct motion.

- Retrograde planets need not be feared as half of charts have retrograde planets. Material success though delayed is not hindered because of retrograde motion. The path to success or the approach will certainly not be same as with the direct planet.