Mercury turns retrograde on January 21st where it will encourage us to look back rather than forwards and see where we need to reflect, retreat, relax, or revise. Mercury of course rules the mind and the way we communicate with others and generally process information, including the vehicles for that communication such as our technological devices and travel timetables.
Mercury retrograde is a mainstream concept now and even the New York Times, which pooh-poohed the idea that a planet appearing to move backwards could be a real thing. Times have changed, and I like to think that’s largely because of the explosion of REAL astrology on the Internet, and in the New York Times is more supportive of the concept if not totally enthusiastic. The lack of enthusiasm can be blamed on astrology writers who admonish readers to put everything on hold while they hide from their lives until the retrograde is over, which is silly and unhelpful.
To understand the illusion of its movement means to realize that we are not at the center of things, that there is a reality beyond the one we see. (For astrology bloggers, this is less a problem than further evidence of the planet’s wiliness — as if its dangerous power is drawn less from what the planet actually does or is and more from the story of our confused efforts to understand it.)
There is a wisdom behind retrogrades that encourages us to take a breath and stop what we are doing, if only for a moment, and look back at our lives before forging ahead with something new. Mercury isn’t the only planet that retrogrades, but it does so more often and […]