At 07:20 UT (Universal Time) Thursday, November 24th, 2011, Mercury the wise communicator—and universal trickster—turns retrograde at 20°06′ Sagittarius in the sign of the Archer, sending communications, travel, appointments, mail and electronics especially and including the internet and computers into a general whirl-wind of misunderstandings and inconceivable chicanery! We can all take a deep breath and relax again from Tuesday the 13th of December.
What does it mean?
A planet is described as retrograde when it appears to be moving backwards through the zodiac. According to modern science, this traditional concept arises in the illusory planetary motion created by the orbital rotation of the earth with relation to other planets in our solar system. It’s a bit like travelling on the road watching another car beside you: when the other car slows down, or you speed up, it looks as though the other car is moving backwards. Planets are never actually retrograde or stationary, they just seem that way due to this cosmic shadow-play.
When Mercury starts turning in an apparent backward motion, we will start to feel the effects of this event days or even as far as two weeks earlier. When the planet normalizes we will see the tempo of events pick up in our lives as the planet becomes “stationary” and then speeds forward.
How will it affect us?
Let’s start with the crazy stuff: things might break, people might overreact and act a bit crazy, miscommunication is common, travel plans are foiled and changed, technology doesn’t do what it’s supposed to and life in general comes to a bit of a standstill. It’s kind of like being on a psychedelic carousel. Just go with it until it comes to a stand-still….laugh off the madness and enjoy the ride. It’s definitely time to just go with the flow now.
This is not a time to make expensive purchases or determining decisions as they probably won’t last. If you must buy something big, make sure you keep the receipt. Don’t sign contracts and try not to start new things. Unresolved issues from the past tend to push themselves forward.
It is not exactly wise to make important decisions while Mercury is retrograde, since it is likely that such decisions will be clouded by misinformation, poor communication and careless thinking. Mercury is all about mental clarity and the power of the mind, so when Mercury is retrograde these intellectual characteristics tend to be less acute than usual, as the critical faculties are dimmed. Make sure you pay attention to the small print!
Gemini (June) and Virgo (September) are signs ruled by Mercury, so if you are one of those born during those months, you will be feeling it more than anyone else.
So, where’s the good in mercury going retrograde?
Actually, as long as you can get comfortable with things going slightly askew for the next few weeks, mercury retrograde is in fact quite magical. Mercury is not an emotional planet, but rather a highly objective, truth-seeking one. It rules intelligence, education and truth. This means that you may uncover something that you didn’t know, secrets and mysteries will be exposed and those mystical “coincidences” become more common.
Mercury retrograde might also affect your love life in a good way, in that it is very possible that you may hear from an old flame or an old friend and enjoy catching up.
During the next few weeks become acutely aware of what the world throws at you because it may in fact be taking you down a rabbit hole which comes out at a whole new level of understanding. Synchronous meetings with unexpected people become extraordinarily prevalent and life will take on some astonishing twists and turns.
This is also the perfect time to complete all those unfinished projects. Why? The key is the reversed direction of movement: take any known Mercurian action, reverse its flow, consider the keywords “re-doing something”, “double-checking”, “finish the old projects” and there you are, you’ve found the good side of Mercury retrograde.
Above all, be generous and compassionate during mercury retrograde, you are already aware about the influence of this period, but many others may not be, so give them some slack and don’t respond too harshly because this is the time that things are said and done that aren’t meant.
Good luck! x