Even if you are not a follower or believer in astrology you may still take note when that spunky little planet Mercury starts appearing to move backward in the sky. The awareness has even made its way in to somewhat main stream media. One of the articles I used for this post came from the Huffington Post. Haha. How cool is that?
What is Mercury Retrograde? Mercury Retrograde is when the planet Mercury APPEARS to be moving backward in the sky. This is an optical illusion created by the varying speeds of the planets as they travel around the sun.
From Earth it looks like Mercury travels the route shown above during a retrograde period. Follow the arrows as Mercury appears to be moving forward, then stops at the red dot (which is called stationing), appears to move backward, then stops again at the brown dot, and then continues forward on its usual course.
Now, many posts and people will tell you that the Mercury Retrograde starts and ends at the stationing points. And when considering the actual position of the planet, technically that is correct. For the purposes of understanding the INFLUENCE on the Earth and its people then we need to look a little deeper.
The influence of a Mercury Retrograde cycle actually begins slightly at or slightly before the blue dot on the graphic above, identified as when Mercury enters the pre-shadow. This is because the influence of Mercury on Earth will not return to “normal” until the planet travels through its retrograde phase, stations and then has continued to move forward again on what appears to be its usual course.
See how the brown dot indicating Mercury Direct Station lines up with the blue dot indicating Mercury Retrograde enters Pre-Shadow? When Mercury gets back to where it “went off track” and resumes its normal course and “duties,” that is when the positive guidance of Mercury has resumed.
Mercury, the deity, was said to watch over and essentially bless and help the mortals with activities involving communication, technology, travel, commerce, financial gain, eloquence and trickery & thieves. So when Mercury is in retrograde those things that He helped with are left without that positive guidance. Therefore, it has been noted that when Mercury is Retrograde all kinds of chaos ensues in all of those areas. It doesn’t end there! The Sun sign in which Mercury goes retrograde does add an additional influence to what may be affected.
Usually, Mercury goes retrograde in one sign (let’s say Leo) and then goes direct in another sign (let’s say Virgo). For those who don’t know, Leo is associated with Fire and Virgo is associated with Earth. Meaning that the focus of Mercury’s ill effects is a bit spread around, lessening the load so to speak. This cycle however is fairly unique. Mercury goes retrograde in Libra and direct also in Libra, which is an Air sign. This is the third cycle this year where Mercury has been retrograde in only the Air element.
Mercury going retrograde and direct in the same sign is a powerful combination which intensifies the focus of ill effects. This happens about once every seven years or so. Let’s take a look back. The last time Mercury went Retrograde and Direct in only the Air sign three times was in 2008. Anyone remember the financial disaster of that year? And then seven years before that in 2001 when the dot com bubble burst. So this Mercury Retrograde cycle comes with some pretty dire predictions.
All we can really do is be aware, prepare, research, refrain and be confident. Being aware is easily done by finding a reliable astrological calendar that will tell you when Mercury enters the pre-shadow phase. Because remember that is when we start feeling that influence! If you wait to action until Mercury is actually Retrograde, chances are you are feeling late.
Research! Before making any decisions regarding financial gain, commerce, travel, etc, make sure to research thoroughly. There may be dangers, setbacks, important information that is currently hidden from you or other hiccups that could be avoided if you just refrain from taking action until the Mercury Retrograde phase has passed. Be confident! Just remember that you are a powerful being.
Just because Mercury has gone on a bit of a vacation does not mean that you cannot safely succeed in all endeavors.
When something sounds wrong to you, simply investigate. Forgive lovers and coworkers because their communication skills are being messed with too. Be kind. Give the benefit of the doubt to those you love. Take extra time to maintain your vehicles and other technology. And just know that this too shall pass.
I highly recommend reading the following articles. Much of my information comes from these sources and I left out A LOT of really good stuff! Inner Circle Sanctuary does teach a simple candle spell to its students to help reverse away the negative effects of Mercury Retrograde. If you haven’t received it yet, please ask your instructor.
Please feel free to add insights in the comments and ask questions. If you have corrections, I would love to see them! Be safe and be well!
Huffington Post article on Mercury Retrograde
The Mercury Retrograde Calendar
All images used in this article belong to their respective owners and copyright holders. Clicking on the photos will take you to their original page.
The Inner Circle Sanctuary is a school for traditional style Wicca and holds eight sabbat festivals every year.