live in a fast-paced, on-the-move, get-ahead society. Appointments are
made, contracts are written, schedules are tight. We live in a
technological age with speed dial on our phones, cell phones in our cars,
and computers in our homes. Email, instant messaging, and faxes move
information quicker than ever.
Don't you sometimes feel like your mind is going to fritz out from all of
the information speeding in all of the time?! You'd think that we would
appreciate those three times a year when we can sit back and catch up and
stop talking and thinking a mile a minute. You'd think we would just
schedule right into our calendars and appointment books during Mercury
retrograde periods: "slow mind down, gather information, put off
Many people who know even a little bit about astrology have heard about
Mercury retrograde periods. Even Regis Philbin on his TV show told his
audience that his astrologer told him not to sign any contracts when
Mercury is retrograde! What exactly is this phenomenon that is so famous
for communications snafus and dire warnings about not signing contracts?
When a planet is retrograde, it has the appearance of moving backward in
the sky. It is an astronomical illusion. Obviously the planets do not
change their orbits and screech to a halt to go backward! But, because of
the planets' relationship to the earth and the speed of their orbits, it
looks like planets begin to move backward. A common analogy for this
phenomenon is this: If you are traveling on a train, and another train
going faster speeds along beside you, you will have that momentary feeling
of moving backward. That is essentially what a retrograde illusion is.
Simply, when Mercury turns retrograde it is time to clear your mind. As we
turn the mind inward we can become open to new ways of thinking and new
ways of perceiving. In the natural order of life, a thought or an idea
precedes the manifestation of that thought or idea. When we try to
manifest something such as an agreement or contract that has not been
fully thought out yet, we are acting prematurely. People commonly feel
anxious during a Mercury retrograde period. The feeling exists because we
are skipping the thinking part and going straight for the manifestation.
This time period is well known for people making mistakes.
Knowing in advance when Mercury is going to be retrograde gives you an
advantage in all of your planning. Obviously, you want everybody's mind in
clear working order with all the necessary facts at hand when you are
planning an event or something that is important to you. For example, you
don't want the company who is printing the invitations for your daughter's
wedding to make a mistake about the date of the wedding!
Snafus, mistakes, and breakdowns of communications equipment are among the
things that tend to occur during all Mercury retrograde periods. The sign
that Mercury occupies as it is retrograding colors the events. If you know
your birth chart you will want to notice which house Mercury is traveling
through as it retrogrades as well as the planets that it aspects or
contacts. This will give you additional information about what needs a
second look, what needs to be reviewed, and what additional information
you need before you can move forward with your planning.
First, let's look at the many events that can occur during any Mercury
retrograde period. Then we will look at the specifics of the current
With any Mercury retrograde period it is time to re-think, re-learn,
rediscover, review. In fact, put a "re" in front of words and
you will be on the right track! The important point to remember is that
you do not have enough information to make a decision. Conclusions are
premature. Any decision making that can be put off until Mercury turns
direct will benefit you down the road. You will find that if you try to
make a decision during this period that you will feel anxious and you will
keep changing your mind. If circumstances are such that it is unavoidable
to put off decision making, then keep in mind that new information will
come in. You may want to build in more flexibility, for example, into a
contract that must be signed. You will certainly want to keep an open mind
to allow for changes that will manifest along the way.
Use this time to do what Mercury retrograde periods encourage: research,
gathering information, taking another look at your schedules, routines,
and plans. Meditate or put yourself into a receiving mode so that you can
clear your mind and discover new ways to perceive. Work on your
communication skills by paying more attention to listening than to talking.
Work on becoming more flexible in your thinking.
If you focus on keeping your expectations in line with the purpose of this
retrograde period then you will not go crazy like everyone else when
typical retrograde events occur.
Mercury rules all forms of communication. Any object that transmits
information is vulnerable to glitches or breakdowns. This includes
telephones, faxes, copy machines, and computers. Make sure you back up all
of your work.
Speaking of communication, your own mind will tend to not interpret
information correctly. Misunderstandings are rampant during this time. To
avoid miscommunications, take the time to repeat what others are saying to
make sure you are getting the right message. Don't assume! For example, if
you are meeting someone for dinner, make absolutely sure that you are
thinking of the same restaurant, on the same day and the same time!
If you are traveling during this period, double check all flight times and
reservations. Because changes in schedules are common now, if you are
traveling for business you will want to allow extra time. For vacation
traveling, I always advise clients to be flexible. The vacation may not go
exactly as planned - but that may not be a bad thing! Some years ago, a
client and her husband booked on to an autumn cruise off the East Coast
during a Mercury retrograde period. As they headed south, warnings about a
hurricane coming up the coast were sounded. The ship had already been out
on the ocean for three days. Apparently, whether or not this hurricane
would effect the cruise was up in the air. Because of that, the ship
turned around and went back to port. Everybody was put up in lovely bed
and breakfast inns for the next couple of days with no charge and the
entire amount of the cruise was refunded. My client and her husband had a
wonderful free vacation!
Speaking of travel, this is a time when cars commonly end up in the shop
Mercury's retrograde in Virgo signals a review period concerning work,
health and organizational issues. Virgo is an earth sign and is therefore
about tangible achievement. Chances are you could use the time to
more fully formulate your ideas, thoughts and opinions about these areas
of your life. The Mercury retrograde period provides you with the
opportunity to loop back and give you that time to review. If you
know your chart, look to see what house Mercury is traveling through to
examine your material goals in that life area. It is time to clear
your mind so that you can be receptive to new ways of thinking and
perceiving some of your life goals. When Mercury turns direct on September
20th, you will be ready to begin a new phase.
Don't become impatient and move quickly during this time. Your
communication in this area requires careful, well-thought-out ideas. There
may be some profound disagreements. There may be delays. Don't sweat
it - it's just part of the cycle. Don't allow careful thinking to
slip over that line into pessimism or negative thinking.
Mercury retrograde periods can provide the opportunity for gaining insight
and illumination. See if you can schedule in some quiet time during this
retrograde period. Write in your appointment book or calendar: "slow
mind down, gather information, put off making decisions."
about or purchase Amanda's book Lucky
Amanda Owen - All Rights