Mercury Retrograde In Aquarius: Social Adjustments

Mercury began another retrograde process on January 30th/31st which will last until Feb 20th/21st. This is when it appears to be moving backwards from our earth based vantage point due to the positioning of the Earth and Mercury in each of their orbits around the Sun. This one is occurring completely in Aquarius.

In the weeks (and especially days) leading up to it, it can already start to feel like a retrograde and some of its themes can get seeded. This happens because Mercury slows down (again from our vantage point) and travels in the part of sky it will be returning to after the retrograde begins. This is known as the ‘pre-shadow’ period which began on January 15th.

If you have read my previous Mercury Retrograde articles, the remainder of this section and the following one are nearly the same. You can skip to the third section and beyond if you don’t want to re-read all the general themes associated with these periods. Those other parts are more specific to this edition of it.

Mercury retrograde is known for the problematic effects it often has on communication technology, transactions, motor vehicles, anything with moving parts, and commuting in general. Some people even get headaches near the beginning of it. We could experience some challenges, misunderstandings, and errors around our communications, numbers/details, and commerce, as well as changes, cancellations, or delays in our schedules.

Sometimes these issues could occur when we are excessively analytical without tuning into our internal guidance. Depending on how we flow with it and other variables, we may not always experience these surface level inconveniences, or they could just be minor irritants.

Mercury Retrograde can also be a good time to revisit or redo tasks, projects, ideas, or anything else that was initiated in the past. It can give us a different perspective or shift in thinking that can help us to approach these things in ways we wouldn’t have done before. This may also be a period of reconnecting with old friends, family, lovers, or others we haven’t seen in a while. When we reconnect with people during a retrograde, it sometimes can help to facilitate a shift in the relationship. In some cases, issues from the past can come up which may need to be hashed out.

The Deeper Purpose of Mercury Retrograde

Ultimately, Mercury Retrograde is a time for us to recalibrate and adjust specific areas of our lives as well as how we apply our minds towards these issues. It is a period in which we may receive important insights and see things in a new light. In most cases, it can be mildly transformational, but in some cases it can facilitate more major transformations depending on how it corresponds to your personal astrological chart.

During and following the retrograde, certain areas of our lives can go through changes or shifts, or we can experience a re-orientation of some sort which influences how we proceed over the coming months or in some cases, it can have a more long-term significance. In the three weeks afterwards, known as the ‘post-shadow’ period, we move forward with some sort of new awareness, adjustment, as well as new ideas and thoughts that have been seeded which will develop and become more defined as time progresses.

Certain things that have come up specifically in the weeks leading up to the start of the retrograde could determine where this energy could play out. It is also possible that there could have been changes or developments at that time which may go through a sorting-out process or shift in dynamics during the actual retrograde and in the two weeks following. There could be unknown variables, either positive or negative, that were either unseen or hadn’t been conceived yet, which may become apparent over the coming month.

The sign(s) and element(s) in which Mercury retrograde travels in shows the energy we are re-orienting ourselves with. More importantly, if you are familiar with your natal astrology chart, then your house(s) or any planetary placements being affected will show more specifically which areas of life you will be experiencing its energy in. For the astrologically literate, it begins at 26’29 degrees of Aquarius and will retrograde back to 11’01 degrees of the same sign before turning forward again.

Occurring In Aquarius, The First of a Series Primarily in Air Signs

Mercury Retrograde always happens in primarily one element for 1-2 years. This is the first of a series that is mainly occurring in Air signs which will last until Fall 2022. The Air element is about intellect, objectivity, the mind, communication, and social aspects of life. This period is about re-aligning ourselves with these qualities if necessary and expressing them in new or revamped ways.

With this retrograde in Aquarius, we may experience or apply re-orientations, adjustments, developments, circumstances, or reflect on themes connected to friends/acquaintances, groups/teams, the collective, humanitarianism, the global community, activism, equality, social networks, the internet, and originality. This sign is about the future as well as the innovation and utilization of all things pertaining to science and technology. Aquarius is also associated with both rationality and idealism. It is about freedom and free-thinking.

Aquarius’ Traditional Ruler Saturn Square Its Modern Ruler Uranus

During this retrograde, Aquarius’ traditional ruler Saturn (also in Aquarius) will be in a tense square aspect with its modern ruler (or sub-ruler) Uranus in Taurus. This will be strong from February 7th-24th, with it making its exact aspect on the 17th/18th. However, this energy will be a major part of the astrological backdrop throughout this next year as they will be in exact square again in June and next December/January when these energies will peak again.

Personally, after many years of observation and practice, I currently use traditional rulers as the main rulers in my astrological delineation work. However, Uranus definitely represents many qualities of Aquarius that are contradictory to Saturn and therefore it is clearly a representative of that sign as well, yet I see it as different from being a ‘Ruler’.

Uranus represents the freedom seeking, revolutionary, rebelling, progressive, reforming, idealistic, unconventional, technological, inventive, futuristic, and scientific qualities of Aquarius. Saturn represents the seriousness, aloofness, social/communal/collective structures, rational, and fixed/rigid qualities of the sign.

Although Aquarius energy is evolutionary and open minded (reflected by Uranus), it can also be unyielding (reflected by Saturn) when it comes to viewpoints outside of what it has already determined to be truth, fact, or what is best. This is the Aquarian paradox which is something we have been seeing play out collectively in the political landscape.

Outside of the overlapping Aquarian themes mentioned, Saturn is also traditional, conservative, and cautious. It rules commitments, maturity, responsibilities,  limitations, restrictions, the status quo,  and structures in general. It is about patience, practicality, discipline, and boundaries.

This is a period in which Uranus themes (as mentioned) will be at odds with Saturn themes (as mentioned). This can play out as ‘old versus new’, ‘restrictions versus freedom’, ‘the status quo versus revolution’, ‘commitments/responsibilities versus liberation’,  or ‘elder versus youth’. This can also be a time of integrating Saturn and Uranus such as applying new, technological, scientific, or metaphysical approaches to help us with our work. However this energy plays out, it will somehow play a role in the adjustments occurring in our lives (and collectively) reflected by the Mercury retrograde process.

Mercury Retrograde Significant Dates

Below are some of the dates and information for some of the major astrological configurations during this retrograde.

*The dates below are based on the Americas. The further East you are located, you may need to consider it as the next day.

Jan 30th/31st  Mercury retrograde begins at Jan 30th 3:51pm Universal Time

The common Mercury retrograde themes and complications may come up strongly at this time and in recent days leading up to this. You may get some sort of indication of how it may be playing out for you over the next month based on how you feel or what transpires. It’s possible that certain things that happen at this time, which may seem insignificant, can somehow be connected to how this retrograde process will affect you.

Feb 8th/9th  Mercury Retrograde Conjunct the Sun (Inferior Conjunction)

This is the halfway point of Mercury retrograde, known as the ‘inferior conjunction,’ which is when it returns to the Sun. This can be a period of increased insights, and the themes or circumstances pertaining to how this retrograde is affecting you may come up more during this period.

Complications and frustrations can also be stronger at this time depending on your circumstances or how you are applying yourself. This may also be a period of ridding yourself of certain thoughts, ideas, perceptions, old interests, expectations, or other things that are not serving you while the potential for new ones may be seeded.

Feb 9th-11th Mercury Retrograde Square Mars, overlapping with Venus conjunct Jupiter

In some ways, this can be one of the more annoying periods of this retrograde. Conflicts, arguments, irritability, and impatience can occur more easily during this time. We need to be a little extra cautious during this period to minimize the risk of saying things incorrectly or making impulsive decisions that we may regret later.

However, as the aspect between Mercury and Mars separates we will also experience conjunction between Venus and Jupiter (also in Aquarius) which will be strongest on February 10th/11th. This can be expansive, optimistic, fortunate, or educational when it comes to our social life, matters of love, pleasures, finances, creativity, or things pertaining to aesthetics or beauty. However this can also be a time of overindulging or overspending money/resources.

Feb 12th/13th Mercury Retrograde Conjunct Venus

This can be a good time for connecting with others socially as interactions can be pleasant. Considering the retrograde, it can be good for catching up with others that we haven’t connected with in a long time and resolving any issues if there are any. Addressing financial or relationship matters can also come up. In some cases revisiting any creative effort or aesthetic adjustment could make sense as well. Mercury will be in between Venus and Jupiter and therefore some of Mercury conjunct Jupiter themes (mentioned above) may play out as well.

Feb 14th/15th Mercury Retrograde Conjunct Jupiter

This can be a very mind opening period, perhaps lucky and expansive. It can be good for revisiting perspectives, media, or something educational related. Considering the ‘big picture’ is a strong theme now with perhaps a shift in perception or some sort of re-thinking about it. Some people may receive positive news at this time. We may have big ideas but it’s wise to wait until at least 3 days after  the retrograde ends before beginning to really move forward with anything. Mercury will be in between Venus and Jupiter and therefore some of Mercury conjunct Jupiter themes (mentioned in Feb 9th-11th paragraph) may play out as well.

Feb 17th/18th Peak of Saturn Square Uranus (although strong throughout February)

Check “Aquarius’ Traditional Ruler Saturn Square Its Modern Ruler Uranus” section in earlier part of this article.

Feb 20th/21st Mercury Ends Retrograde and Goes Stationary Direct

Mercury will slowly begin to move forward from February 20th/21st onward. The areas of our lives that have been affected by this retrograde will start to become more clear and things will fall into place more easily as we progress into the coming days and weeks. As Mercury gradually picks up speed, we can move forward in the areas of life that have been affected. However, usually the first few days after it ends can still feel like it is retrograde as complications may occur due to Mercury’s stationary position. It’s usually best to wait until at least 3 days afterwards before finalizing decisions, agreements, etc.

Nearly 2 months later, at April 18th/19th and/or in the days following, there may be even more clarity around certain things that have been seeded during this specific retrograde. From there, things may develop further with a better perception, or circumstances may indicate lack of sufficiency, not what was anticipated, or that something needs to change.

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Lunar Eclipse In Cancer: Navigating Heaviness

We are having a Lunar Eclipse in Cancer on January 10th  peaking at 7:10pm Universal Time which will be on the 11th in the East. It will be visible (weather permitting) wherever it will be night time when it is occuring. This includes all of Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and parts of New Zealand.

Most of the American continents will not be able to see it with the exception of Greenland, the Maritimes, parts of Quebec, parts of Maine, Northern Canada, Alaska, the Eastern tip of Brazil. However, this is a penumbral eclipse which is the least noticeable type as the Moon will have a slight shade which will subtly dim its brightness.

As mentioned in my previous articles, the current series of Eclipses are in the Cancer-Capricorn axis as we are experiencing evolutionary changes associated with these signs. This series slightly began in mid-2018 as the eclipses were beginning to transition out of Leo-Aquarius, however they became exclusive to Cancer/Capricorn in early 2019 and will conclude later this year.

This one follows a Solar Eclipse in Capricorn at the previous New Moon that occurred on December 25th/26th. You can read more about it here. The energies of these specific back to back lunation’s will have influence over the following 6 months which may have begun in the 6 weeks leading up to them

Lunar Eclipse In Cancer

This eclipse is a Full Moon in Cancer near the North Node. This indicates changes and developments associated with this sign that have an increasing effect on how its energies are expressed. It opposes the Sun in Capricorn near the South Node which reflects shifts that have a decreasing effect on how that sign is expressing itself.

Cancer belongs to the water element which is associated with emotion, intuition, instinct, and feeling. Ruled by the Moon, this sign specifically is associated with the home, family, caring, nurturing, motherly energy, security, vulnerability, and bonding. It is sentimental, comfort seeking, protective and nostalgic. Negatively, it can be overly emotional, smothering, clingy, too subjective, insecure, and attached to the past.

Capricorn belongs to the earth element which is practical, sensual, enduring, and physically oriented. It is associated with ambitions, career, achievement, orderliness, productivity, authority, governance, duty, and business. Capricorn is structured, disciplined, prudent, and responsible. Negatively, it can be too serious, stubborn, material focused, callous, overly concerned with social status, and highly controlling.

Having the lunar nodes and eclipses highlighting these signs could reflect adjustments in how we incorporate their themes in our lives. Circumstances that have been playing out in the last year and into this year can push us towards some sort of re-orientation between the polarity of Cancer and Capricorn. Shifts in work-life balance, emotional matters over material matters, security over status, wellbeing over productivity, are some examples of how this can be playing out.

Lunar Eclipse Opposing Saturn-Pluto Conjunction Joined By Sun, Mercury

The Sun and Mercury are joining the Saturn-Pluto Conjunction in Capricorn which are all opposing the eclipsed Moon. On its own, the meeting of Saturn and Pluto is the most significant planetary aspect of 2020 and in recent years. This current conjunction has been gradually building up in the previous months and it peaks in the weeks before and after this eclipse with the exact alignment happening on January 12th.

The combined energy of Saturn and Pluto can be heavy, serious, and can bring about some major challenges depending on how it is interacting with your natal chart. Saturn is also the ruler of Capricorn and this aspect can reinforce some of the eclipse related shifts connected to that sign.

At best, this configuration can have a purging, transformative, or deepening effect on structures, responsibilities, and duties. It can also be a time to address fears, obsession, jealousy, compulsiveness, trauma, or shadows. Issues around power, control, limitations, boundaries, debt, sexuality, abuse, hidden matters, death, or manipulation may also play out.

Circumstances, developments, and thoughts that come up may be calling upon us to get real about an area of our life. For those into personal development, this can help to push us towards a necessary evolutionary change or perhaps an ending to something to help us in future growth.

This eclipse highlights these Saturn-Pluto themes into first 3-6 months of 2020. However it will likely be experienced the strongest from January 9th-14th when it is exact and also joined by the Sun and Mercury.

The Saturn-Pluto Effect on Geopolitical and Collective Matters

On a geopolitical and collective level, whenever outer planets like Saturn and Pluto meet there is the potential for major developments and events in which important things are established, seeded, or concluded. It can also reflect conflicts that can contribute to a collective evolutionary process. The reason for this significance is because it is a transition of one long term cycle to another.

The last time Saturn and Pluto aligned was in November 1982 in Libra and this current period we are in now marks the ending of a Saturn-Pluto cycle that began then. Therefore there is a transition in what areas this combination of energies is being expressed. That cycle that is closing up now had a collective impact on how we approach relationships, marriage, equality, diplomacy, and other Libra related areas over a span of 37+ years. The challenges reflected by these planets contributed (directly or indirectly) to that process during the different phases of the cycle.

The transition period into the new cycle began in late 2014 and it is directly affecting Capricorn areas of ambitions, career, productivity, business, government/governance, banking structures, and a redefinining of how power and status is expressed.

A great recent example of how this is playing out is the changing dynamics of the British Royal family on how that can affect their role as head of state (for Commonwealth countries) in the decades to come. The current political landscape in the US and around the world is also seeding a process that will play out throughout this cycle.

Also in recent news, this Saturn-Pluto energy (combined with Uranus stationary, mentioned below) reflects the assassination of a major Iranian political figure a week prior to this eclipse. This conflict (whether or not it escalates) will contribute to the changes reflected in this new cycle but also can be closing up certain themes pertaining Middle Eastern tension of the previous decades.

Uranus Going Direct

During this Eclipse, Uranus is stopped in the sky as it is in the process of changing motion from our perspective here on Earth. It is ending its retrograde literally hours later. At this time, and in the weeks before and after, Uranus themes can be coming up strongly. It’s possible that some of the themes coming up now may be connected to thoughts, feelings, or circumstances that were happening last August or in April/May 2019.

There can be some surprises, liberating actions, or beginning to move forward in a freeing, innovative, unique, or unconventional way. This can also manifest as shake ups, disruptions, separation, accidents, or rebellion. Important developments pertaining to new technology or innovation can also play out. It is common to see more disasters in the news during these stationary periods, whether they are naturally occurring or man made.

Mercury Superior Conjunction

Mercury is joining the Sun on the day of this Eclipse in what is called a ‘Superior Conjunction’. This aspect will also be aligned with the Saturn-Pluto conjunction (mentioned above) which accentuates the significance of this overall planetary configuration.

This is a period in which we may experience more clarity and potential developments connected some of the themes that have been playing out in the last 1.5 months since Mercury’s previous retrograde has ended.

Ideas, situations, or other things that were seeded in November may have further developments or circumstances come up. We may experience a change or some sort of progress. It can even result in a beginning or ending due to increased certainty around a situation..

In comparison to these last few months, our minds can become more aligned with our true needs and self-expression from this period forward until mid-late February. We can better implement whatever we have been thinking about with greater confidence and direction. However, due to the Saturn-Pluto conjunction, this energy can also have longer term implications in connection to the themes of the combined energy of those planets.

Jupiter Conjunct The Lunar South Node

Jupiter is aligned with the South Node of the Moon which highlights some of the themes of the previous Solar Eclipse. This can reflect changes and shedding connected to negative expressions of Jupiter which can include excessiveness, overconfidence, extremism,  dogmatic opinions/behavior, provocation, blind optimism, extravagance, wastefulness, judging others, gambling and speculative pursuits, inflationary actions, or behavior that disregards consequences.

Jupiter also rules beliefs, morals, education, aspirations, travel, foreign countries, publishing, as well as media and marketing and perhaps it can affect those things as well. Jupiter is naturally expansive and idealistic, however, considering it is aligned with the South Node in Saturn ruled Capricorn as well as the occurrence of the Mercury-Sun-Saturn-Pluto conjunction configured with the Cancerian Lunar Eclipse, this is a time to be realistic, cautious, take things more seriously, and focus on what is important in consideration of your emotional well being.

Things To Consider

What has transpired for you in recent weeks in regards to your feelings and circumstances that have been playing out? What has the Universe shown you to help you in decisions that you need to make? What area of your life requires you to take a more serious approach? What do you need to do to achieve a more fulfilling work-life balance? Do you need to reconsider your ambitions? What is important for your emotional well-being? Do you need address anything pertaining to personal shadows, power dynamics, trauma, fears, debt, sexuality, or boundaries? In what areas of your life have you been too excessive?

These are just some examples of the themes that can be playing out for you. It is best to try to tune into this energy and pay attention to your feelings to help you in decisions you need to make. The two weeks following this eclipse can be a good time to initiate any sort of releasing process. The eclipse begins at 5:08pm Universal Time on January 10th with it peaking at 7:10pm and finishing at 9:12pm. The Moon begins to wane after 7:21pm. You can click here to see when the peak will be in your time zone.

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