Mercury Retrograded at 18 Scorpio 23 today–Nothing is in close contact for this event (though Vesta is technically sextile from Virgo, the aspect did not perfect before Merc’s retrograde, essentially ‘robbing’ the contact of real meaning). A Merc retrograde in Water typically calls us to examine the emotions, and all communications, occurrences, and perceptions related to these. We ask ourselves, How do I feel? and we will spend some time determining the ‘fit’ of those feelings to our lives. We do see Jupiter trine Merc’s turnaround (wide, by my fussy event standards), probably exaggerating the emotional effects, and possibly linking them to the social. Mercury retrograde in Scorpio could plunge us into dicey emotional territory; the emotions are intense, deep, probably at least partially hidden even from us, and may be propelled by undercurrents of feeling of which we’re unaware, and we may confuse these with thought; we’re ‘feeling, not thinking’, though we may believe just the opposite. This retrograde will be a time of emotional discovery, and should be approached with that in mind.
Well, if you find my pessimism off-putting, now’s the time to stop reading! Or you can call it realism, and go on. The past two days or so, something has been in the air, and now that I’m looking at the chart for Mercury’s turnaround, I see what it is: Merc began to backtrack in the 6 AM hour Pacific of the 26th, coming off pursuit of Vesta, the only close aspect at the time a sextile to Sedna–and even that doesn’t perfect. Couple this with Venus’ stress at the end of Cancer, then today’s entry into Leo, Jupiter’s flight into exaltation in Cancer, and two oddballs, Vesta sesquiquadrate Neptune, and Uranus opposed hZeus while Chiron quincunxes it, and we see some interesting dynamics expressed. There may be a lot of ‘defending of the Faith’ when that is precisely the subject that needs examining; whatever it is that we’ve been (rather desperately) insisting is sacred is exactly what needs to be dragged into the light this Mercury retrograde. Venus in Leo gives us the strength to examine it without falling apart–unless that vanity is part of the problem. Jupiter allows the social sphere to play the part of kindly showing us what needs fixing, if we’ll only pay attention, as functions performed will include dispelling illusions about what we revere and shocks concerning ambitions and desires that poke at our primal wound and make us unreasonable (aside from the way we should be listening with our spirits, rather than with our minds, due to the retrograde). It makes for some confused and angry individuals, and a great deal of defensive blather even when no one is attacking. The best advice, perhaps, is that when you are bitten for trying to help, don’t take it personally.
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Mercury goes direct on the 17th, at 1:03 PM PDT, at 5 Pisces 38. A chart for the moment of direction of a body can often tells us a little something both about what the retrograde meant, and what tack the planet will now take in forward motion. This kind of chart may resonate through the coming weeks simply because the planet will be at its most ‘still’ point at this time, as motionless as a body ever gets, and so may ‘mark’ the Cosmos with a particular vibe. Keeping our usual strict 2 degree or so orb, we see that Mercury turns it around in aspect to the Moon (a square) and Neptune (a conjunction)–and for depth we note the wide-ish semi-sextile to both Mars and Uranus in Aries.
This combination of aspects suggests some hard emotional and intuitive truths may be revealed, likely through exchange of info, gossip, or thoughts with others (Gemini), or through something written, which contradicts what we perhaps idealized, misunderstood, or were mislead about (Merc in Pisces conjunct Neptune). With Mercury having spent the entire retrograde in Pisces, we can be fairly sure that there is something we missed over this period, something we imagined we knew or understood, or some condition we assumed was in effect that was not.
To be fair, though, there was also the potential for something fantastic to be born in this retro period; many of us came up with the spark or idea that will change our lives, take us in a new direction–and we may not even recognize this, yet. Particularly if your new idea or direction involved both a creative and a co-operative element, you are already on your way to realizing significant changes to the way you ——– Fill that in with the matters of the House ruled in your natal chart by Pisces/ Neptune.
This retro period dared a lot of people to dream; now, with direction, the work of making those dreams realities begins, and the first order of business includes a confrontation with emotional realities and information previously not known (Moon in Gemini), and a re-forming and re-visiting of the creative entity birthed since the retrograde began (Merc conj Neptune–but you’ll notice Mercury is ahead of Neptune, and so will not make exact contact again, emphasizing that this will not bring new creative visions, but will only feature them over the time between direction and Superior Conjunction). The informal contact from Mars and Uranus in Aries says that our main ‘instrument’ will be our own Self-interest, Will, and initiative, driven by our unique point of view, the support of the group, and the general willingness of all to innovate–we’ve got nowhere to go but forward from here.
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This is from the new ECLIPSE, out tomorrow; I’d just finished this section when they announced the election of Cardinal Bergoglio. Make of it what you will–
The Vatican Vote The Cardinals seemed to be dragging their feet when it came to getting together to vote on a new Pope–and that made me wonder if they don’t have an astrologer on staff–I’m betting they do. Benedict announced his intention to resign on 11 February, with Mercury direct, square Vesta, semi-sextile Pallas, sextile Pluto, and close to trine with Saturn. That suggests a message that was itself direct, though in conflict with what is most revered (this could apply to the 600-plus years tradition since the last living Pope stepped down–until now the Pope has been expected to serve until death), but wise, particularly in choosing a point of easy transition, and that this is both permanent for Benedict (no take backs!) but may also have created a new tradition of retirement for Popes to come.
The foot-dragging on gathering the Cardinals for the Conclave only makes sense in astrological terms: with Mercury retrograde a vote on a new Pope might be a very bad idea, promising that whomever was elected would likely end up being significantly different in enacting the Papal role than he seemed as a priest; however, it is a good time for them to get together and re-consider, re-hash, and perhaps re-volutionze the Church with a progressive choice. Voting has already started (afternoon of the 11th); typically there are an average of nine days of voting in order to choose a new Pope. Mercury goes direct early afternoon Pacific time of the 17th (so even before the day’s voting begins in Rome, if they will indeed be assembling every day). It’s reasonable to expect that voting could stretch into Mercury direct, that perhaps it’s even intended to do so. Just after direction on the 17th the transiting Moon will conjunct Jupiter, symbol of the office of the Pope, and puts both very close in square to Chiron. This could signal the point of election, with a ‘hurt or heal’ scenario the challenge for whomever is elected
Update: A Pope has just been elected on 13 March, Cardinal Bergoglio of Argentina, with Merc still retrograde. Does this mean they really weren’t using an astrologer? Not necessarily, since Bergoglio is known as a social progressive who is actively for a clean-up of both conduct and business within the Church, certainly a vote for effective re-vamping (Merc retro appropriate) of existing practice. At the approximate time of the announcement the Aries Moon was acting as a Finger of God base with Jupiter, apex North Node–so they may have listened to the Universe/ God, bending human emotion and Will to the need of the Church to re-make itself, in order to survive successfully into the future.
November 6th: Besides the retrograde of Mercury (at 3:03 PM PST at 4 Sagittarius 18) we have Juno sextile Zeus, Venus sesquiquadrate the South Node, the Sun quincunx Jupiter, and the Earth as apex to a Finger of God with base of Juno-Zeus. What a tidy little package (most of ) this makes! Though Mercury may be taking a great deal of our attention, we really should keep an eye on that Finger, as it describes a power struggle by a pair of Olympians (the US election?) one of whom feels terminally disrespected and who’s out for revenge, while the other holds all the real power–you figure out who’s who! When we look at the Sabian for the Earth at this point, we get this: ‘Head Covered With a Rakish Silk Hat, Muffled Against the Cold, A Man Braves A Storm’ That says to me that Frankenstorm Sandy will not succeed in keeping voters home–and possibly suggests a minimum of Merc-style problems, at least for the election.
The Venus-SN aspect, as well as the Sun-Jupiter one, describe an active social arena where both the past and the reality situation will have to be respected if anyone is to gain. Obviously, adjustments will need to be made by all parties–but in the end this will be worth it–and I have a sense that, at least on a smaller scale, this may usher in a new era, one that is both more practical, more kind, and more rewarding for all concerned.
On today’s Mercury Retrograde, which occurs at 7:16 PM PDT of the 14th at 12 Leo 32:
Our biggest danger during the retro time is that Mercury’s Fire placement during the initial change-of-direction could prompt us toward action with each review of Mercurial subjects and when we consider matters of the House where it turns around, as well as when we review matters of any House it may move into during the retrograde. This means that during the retro we may feel continually that ‘something must be done’, though what we need to remember at this point is that, though our re-consideration of matters reveals them in a new light, there will be other things hidden from us by the current retrograde motion of which we will remain unaware at least through the end of the retrograde, and quite possibly on through the shadow period (the time when a newly direct planet moves back through the degrees it just retrogressed through). It makes for a tough internal contradiction, as we ponder issues that quite naturally ‘light a fire’ under us that urges change, and yet we are in no sound position to make decisions that will make those changes effective!
And for tomorrow, the 15th of July:
By the 15th Saturn sesquiquadrates Ceres; authorities or our own power or maternal urges must adjust to the reality of things, likely needing to pull back and delay action, when we consider the other aspects in play–Mars semi-squares Juno, and Earth trines Sedna–actions may actually disempower us, and we just don’t have the ability at present to know what we might lose! A bit scary, unless we simply calm down and hold back. Dark of the Moon begins this evening, Pacific time, calling us to scale back and to meditate, contemplate, and go within.
We stretch into Monday, the 16th, and see what’s up:
Today Uranus also sextiles Ceres, giving the unique point of view and the individuality the license and authority to express; innovation can thrive, as can efforts by individuals and groups to work in harmony with nature. And, Venus trines Zeus, allowing us a glimpse of how desires may be fulfilled in relationship, and money can be earned through ambition–take note of what you realize/ see in this regard.
All this is from ECLIPSE, the Weekly Newsletter that features articles on astrology theory and practice, assessments of well-known people and events, commentary on specific astrological configurations, events, and aspects (this week, it’s Mercury’s Retrograde), and detailed forecast material one (and sometimes two) weeks at a time, using everything you’d expect plus Sedna, Ceres, Vesta, Pallas, Juno, Chiron, and Zeus, and featuring hour-by-hour major Lunar contacts and their meaning–all for only $5 per month!
Merc retreats to 29 degrees of Leo today; this may very actively feel like a personal retreat that places a lot of undefinded, nebulous stress on the individual, as Merc follows retro Neptune on his retreat back into the previous sign. At this point the best guidance may come from an authority or maternal figure, or through meditative interaction with Mother Nature herself (Mercury quincunx to Ceres, which is fresh at 00 Aries, though retro herself may facilitate this exchange).
5:30 AM PDT the Moon sextiles Saturn/ h.Zeus and gives us a ‘to-do’ list for the week. Just after 7 AM PDT the Moon trines Venus, giving us the love or assets needed to accomplish. At this point, there’s just no excuse not to do your best. 10:30 AM PDT the Moon trines the Sun, reinforcing accomplishing goals successfully. This is an almost magical recipe for getting what you want; winners will be those who have their ducks in a row and are ready to get moving–everybody else may just have a really nice day
The Moon enters Scorpio at 12:49 PM PST. This could be a time when we feel like saying, ‘Scorpio, you are a real bitch.’ The atmosphere will seem unusually harsh, with emotional challenges to creativity, with feelings of attack (rather than actual attack) coming forward, and the aesthetic both volatile (via the emotions) and too willing to embrace the unsightly and to re-cycle what may or may not still hold some value. Disorientation may be the overriding result, as we face Merc’s direction (11:20 PM PST).
9:04 AM PST the 29th: I wrote the above several days ago, and now that we’re here, I’m not feeling it in quite the same way–so what’s up? Let’s look at the aspects in effect right now–the Moon is 17 minutes from her Void, with a square to Ceres the last aspect. This suggests to me that we’re in the midst of a natural progression, and that we don’t ‘arrive’ at the Scorpionic reaction until we hit the Scorpio Moon–well that makes sense.
I think all our energy is really focused toward the Mercury Direction tonight (11:20 PM PST), and that tension may override other considerations, with the Moon’s entry into Scorpio enhancing the stress inherent in a station and making it the key player in today’s scenario.
Of course, the Mars/ Saturn square is exact, and Pluto sits at the Sun/ Pallas midpoint, and both are promises of assertive, even volatile, energy making an appearance materially/ physically–and it seems like a smart alternative or channel for our energy! The only chance of this being productive is found in being entirely conscious of just how much ‘push’ there is in the psyche. Pluto can be stealthy, and right when we think we’ve used up all that assertive juice more comes along–and must find an outlet. As long as we can accept that it will keep coming (for Pluto has depths and depths and no end) we will continue in conscious mode, and not fall prey to lashing out, acting out, or passing out from sheer rage, pique, or shock!
See more on the Private Pages (Only for ECLIPSE Readers) at right–get your password with purchase of ECLIPSE AstroJournal, Fall issue, links at right–Thanks! And ECLIPSE Readers, watch for a New Year’s Eve forecast that will be added to December’s Evolving Forecast later today!