Astrology is a spiritual and creative language weaving the story of the solar system into a dynamic and organic narrative that helps us better understand ourselves, the people in our lives, the cycles of our planet, and the divine, as well as practical nature of human consciousness. Core to the study of astrology is the concept of rulership, which assigns sovereignty of points to signs and houses, signs to houses, and signs/points to aspects of human life. Mars “rules” the 1st House and the Sign of Aries. The sign of Aries “rules” the head region of the body, while Mars “rules” aggression and sexuality.
This article will explore the rulership of Mars and its rulership of sexual desire and expression. Sex, like love, or career, is understood through all the other points, but Mars is really the point to look at when we are thinking about sexual attraction, sexual desire, and sexual action. Mercury may let us know how we want to talk about sex or communicate what we want and the Sun may tell us how we feel about our identity related to and through sex, but Mars lets us know about “sex in the raw”.
Mars – Come Get Some!
Mars is our libido, our competitiveness, our drive, our animal instincts, and our passions. Where Mars appears in your chart, you can learn about your “engine”. The Sun is the entire car. Mercury represents all the parts that “handle” the car, from the steering to the transmission. Venus is the look (inside and out) and Moon the feel of your car (chart). Mars is the engine and the output you get when you step on the gas. And since Mars is tied to our sexuality, the sign placement of your Mars lets you know the kind of energy you have for sex, and the house placement lets you know where that sexual and passionate energy best expresses itself.
Mars is a fire point, so it is most at home in the fire signs (Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius) and the fire houses (1st, 5th, and 9th). Air compliments fire, so it “enjoys itself” in Libra, Aquarius, and Gemini and the 3rd, 7th, and 11th Houses. Water and earth both “mute” fire’s energy, causing its expression to be more subdued, but no less energetic – think magma (fire/earth) and steam (fire/water). Sexual energy is identified by the point’s placement in your chart.
What about Mars in the signs?
Mars in Aries in its rulership here, it’s “true” home. Sex for Mars in Aries is sport, meant to be competitive, fun, and dynamic. Set aside social conventions of any cultural system and know that Mars in Aries is looking for great and/or new experiences, much in the same way a competitive athlete wants to constantly test himself or herself against other athletes and new competitive situations.
Considered to be in its “detriment” (or “weakened”), Mars is never really weakened. But it does shift the more competitive, need-for-new-experiences energy into a design that is much more sensual, consistent, and loyal. Taurus, ruled by Venus, enjoys tactile experiences and sex is one of the best ways to experience the pleasures of the incarnated life.
In air, sex becomes more mental in some form or fashion. Mars in Gemini could be defined as “sapiosexual”, which means a person is turned on by intelligence, and in this case, communication. Sex talk, sexting, and sharing thoughts is the preferred way to “get to” sex for this Mars placement.
If you have or meet a Mars in Cancer you may surprise yourself or be surprised at how wild and intense the sex can be for you or with a Mars in Cancer person. But the only person who will know will be the Mars in Cancer lover. This sign placement does not “give up” sex quickly or easily, but once it feels safe you might be or have a personal porn star.
Mars is another sign aligned with its fiery nature, but now the sex is about play and performance. Roleplay, cosplay, and presentation (even some chances at voyeurism) all make the sex more enjoyable and interesting for this Mars person. Stroking the ego is like stroking the g-spot for this placement.
Another earth sign placement expect this Mars to be physical about sex, but with an appreciation for cleanliness, attention to detail (their body and yours), and endurance. Earth sign Mars are not sprinters when it comes to sex, but marathon runners. They know how to pace themselves and stretch out every moment, especially the Virgo Mars.
Another intellectual Mars placement that really gets turned on when you tell them what you want and direct them verbally or with your hands to where you will get the most pleasure. If you are with a Libra Mars, then they will want you to ask them what they want so they can tell you and show you. Sex is about the partnership and doing it together in a fair and balanced way.
Aries may be the “true” home for Mars, but on the sexual level, Mars in Scorpio is as intense and raw as it can get. This is a sign that wants to penetrate and be penetrated, intensely. They want to find the limits of their and their partners’ sexuality and then brazenly cross over those limits into the dark and unknown territory. Make sure you have plenty of lube in this relationship, on hand, at all times.
Back in the last fire sign, Mars here can alternate between dominant and submissive behaviors as a way to enjoy sex with a partner or partners. It’s likely that the term “high sex drive” originated with a Mars in Sagittarius; it is a sign of expansion and exploration. Variety, after all, is the spice of life. Sex is the mission of the Mars in Sagittarius missionary.
With Mars in Capricorn, sex is as much about power as it is about pleasure. In fact, power through sex is a pleasure and the pleasure of sex that increases your worldly power is sexy. Sex is often part of a larger goal and a way to measure oneself in terms of high, average, or low achievement. Mars in Capricorn, like the other earth signs, is a “physical” placement, with an agenda.
There is no real consistent expression except to say that sex is an experiment and there is a willingness to try different sexual experiences to learn as much as possible about the “category” known as sex. The last of the “intellectual” placements for Mars, Aquarius, as in all things, can be “detached” to enjoy through observation. Sex toys and devices most likely exist because an Aquarius in Mars wondered what sex would feel like if you stuck “this” “there”.
Mars in Pisces wants the sex to be transcendent, mystical, and spiritual. They want to be transported and to transport their partner through sex. Since Pisces represents flowing water, this placement can be comfortable flowing in and out of various sexual experiences in search of sexual enlightenment. Open to most any sexual experience so long as it allows them to “touch” the divine while enjoying the sex.
Mars to Mars
Knowing both your Mars placement and that of your partner or partners can help you both or all achieve greater sexual satisfaction and engage in a more open discussion about what you want, what you like, what you can offer, and how to help each other enjoy the body you chose for this life adventure.