Skip to content

Mars – Out of Bounds

Artist: Alessandro Cripsta

I know just enough about astrology to know how to read if and when a planetary body is considered to be out of bounds.

Do I understand, technically speaking, why a planet is out of bound and what it means? To be honest, not really.

While the latter bit of information might prevent some of you from reading on, I invite those remaining to join me in a freeform exploration of OOB, specifically of the Martian variety.

I wasn’t able to unequivocally verify if the term “out of bounds” originated from sports. However, I’m having a hard time coming up with another logical explanation for its origin.

To be out of bounds, is for the player or the ball to have moved beyond the boundaries of the established playing field.

The boundaries keep the game alive. Without them, the rules of the game begin to break down and some degree of chaos ensues. There is no goal without both the boundaries and rules.  We need the container for the game to exist — to have a purpose. As a result, to be out of bounds is to exist beyond the rules.

This brings us to the nature of planetary bodies that are considered to have broken through the boundaries — either in a natal chart or by nature of their transit. Per the study of astrology, the nature of the planets then speak to the essence or energetic signature that manifests as a result of their position.

In researching this post, I read something from Tony Howard that said that the OOB signature doesn’t pursue freedom, it IS freedom. If you are out of bounds, then you are not subject to rules or limitations any longer. You are by definition free.

Freedom has a very positive connotation in our culture. However, freedom can turn toxic if it isn’t properly harnessed. That’s a bit of a paradox, isn’t it? That freedom must be channeled or it can destroy us— or devolve us into a chaotic state.

For example, social norms give us rules that make society function in a somewhat cohesive manner. This is a sweeping generalization with lots of problems, so let’s agree to accept some form of this as a general truth so that we can move forward.

We give a lot of credence to living our lives beyond what others think about us. It has become a bit of a cultural adage: no fucks given. There is a socio-cultural desire to live FREE from the expectations of others. Yet, if we follow that freedom to its most radical form, we arrive at sociopathy. If we’re not tethered in anyway to what others think about us, then our sense of empathy and compassion begin to dissolve. Apathy is a type of freedom but it isn’t the kind of freedom that most of us think about when we seek liberative states of being.

This is the crux of OOB, especially in Mars.

OOB Mars can give us a propensity for radical passion and action.

If channeled properly, this energy can be harnessed to challenge social norms, to go against the grain in a manner that generates enough friction to stoke the fire of transformation on a macroscopic scale.

Un-sublimated passion and action can turn to violence. Sublimated passion can yield boundless creativity, social change, and justice.

The OOB signature doesn’t have to play by the same rules. Perhaps because OOB-ness gives us a degree of objectivity to see the faults in the modes of operation that lie within the spectrum of normality or convention.

Whether we are born with a planetary body out of bounds or we are experiencing this signature through a more temporal transit, there is potential to live, if even for a moment, beyond the norms and rules that create conventional/consensus reality. OOB Mars can spark beautiful outcomes because it can give us access to the creative wellspring to solve problems with solutions that exist beyond the spectrum within which the problems themselves exist.

To quote Albert Einstein, whose Moon was out of bounds is Sagittarius, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” This is the true gift of OOB.



  1. I have natal Mars out of bounds, in 12th, Gemini. Moreso, it is stationary and in grand trine to stationary Pluto and stationary Mercury (in 5th and 8th, respectively). Marsian energy does not come to me naturally, but I do have inherent internal motivation and things I want I will do anyway, no matter what. Though Mars in in 12th, there is “go through the wall” energy to it. I do not take opinions “it won’t work”, they simply don’t matter much to me.

  2. Thank you Ross for bringing that up!
    We are in it right now since 21 Mar 2021 10:30:41 am (EST +5:00) to 24 May 2021 1:45:26 pm (EST +5:00).
    Long time ago, I worked ‘illegally’ in another country (Mars ruling my 9th house) What probably helped me out is to have Mars in Mutual Reception with Saturn (which is never OOB)
    Interesting thoughts about ‘illegal immigrants’ in the news right now!

  3. This is a wonderful post, thank you so very much.

  4. Thank you Ross–you paint quite a vivid picture of this phenomenon.

  5. “Yet, if we follow that freedom to its most radical form, we arrive at sociopathy”

    Well, I have to very hard disagree with this assessment.

    I get that we are all subject to a certain amount of male-supremacist brainwashing, being born into and conditoned by male supremacist culture.

    Even with that caveat, the wild-bordering on insane- claim is a bridge too far.

    Not to point out the obvious, but true freedom is service.

    Radical means “of the root” as in, all freedom is preconditioned on strong roots in service to our highest self.

    True freedom is the opposite of sociopathy.

    In keeping with the author’s sports analogy, here is a lovely quote from the great Noam Chomsky, I think it may help elucidate what true “out of bounds” means:

    “When I was in high school I asked myself at one point: “Why do I care if my high school’s team wins the football game? I don’t know anybody on the team, they have nothing to do with me… why am I here and applaud? It does not make any sense.” But the point is, it does make sense: It’s a way of building up irrational attitudes of submission to authority and group cohesion behind leadership elements. In fact it’s training in irrational jingoism. That’s also a feature of competitive sports.”

    ? Noam Chomsky

    Now, think about “out of bounds” as the opposite of that, and maybe that will help your understanding of out of bound planets?

    • Just wanted to say thank you for writing this comment. I am a female with OOB Mars and have been feeling somewhat self-conscious and fearful about it, as I tend to not fit into many norms but generally work hard to be a kind, upstanding human aware of any personal tendencies toward toxicity.

      I appreciate the helpful write-up from Ross but I have noticed that recent assessments of Mars OOB that I’ve been looking at have been written from the perspective of “within the game” – why play it?

      Notable that Noam had OOB Mars as well (26) 🙂

    • Thank you for the post and just wanted to say thank you also to LovedONe for writing this comment. As an OOB Mars female, I have long felt self-conscious about being outside the norms in many ways, especially at this time on the planet and reading a lot of recent write-ups that warn about the potential toxicities and violence of not following all the rules, as I sometimes (not all the time) do- but with as much awareness and consciousness as possible. Many OOB Mars posts lately seem to be written from “within the game” – but why play it at all?

      Notable that Chomsky had a 26 degree declination on his OOB Mars 🙂

  6. I have a basic question, how do we know if we have an OOB Mars in our natal and/ or when in transit. I know there must be a simply method but I don’t know it. Please some-one advise

Comments are closed for this article!