In four days, on March 5th, Mercury will station retrograde. Astrologers tend to consider the whole retrograde span (forward, backward, and forward again) when discussing a Mercury Retrograde cycle.
The Data, for those who like the details.
Mercury stations retrograde at 29 Pisces 38. It next stations direct at 16 Pisces 6. The full cycle looks like this:
- 2/19/2019 – Mercury passes 16 Pisces 6 the first time
- 3/5/2019 – Mercury stations retrograde at 29 Pisces 38
- 3/28/2019 – Mercury stations direct at 16 Pisces 6
- 4/16/2019 – Mercury passes 29 Pisces 38
I would, however, like to look at another cycle, which is nearly the same timeframe:
2/19/2019 – Mercury makes it’s first conjunction with Neptune at 15 Pisces 34. The sun, having just entered Pisces, sits at 0 Pisces 19.
3/5/2019 – Mercury stations retrograde at 29 Pisces 38, just 1o 13’ shy of a conjunction with Chiron at 0 Aries 51. The sun is only 7 arc-minutes shy of the center point of Pisces.
3/24/2019 – Retrograde Mercury makes a second conjunction with Neptune at 16 Pisces 50. The sun is in the 4th degree of Aries and only 2 degrees past Chiron.
4/1/2019 – Mercury, now pro-grade, makes a third conjunction with Neptune at 17 Pisces 8. The sun is now at 12 Aries 21.
4/17/2019 – Mercury crosses over the Aries Point.
4/19/2019 – Mercury conjuncts Chiron at 3 Aries 28. The sun sits just 22 arc-minutes shy of Taurus.
Notice in this latter cycle the sun moves through two signs (Pisces and Aries) while Mercury dances between Neptune and Chiron. The Aries point (0 degrees Aries) sits right in the middle of those signs.
Neptune rules Pisces. Chiron is said to rule Virgo. Mercury rules Virgo and is thus detriment in Pisces. Chiron has only just left Pisces (on February 18th, the day before both of the cycles described above) for the last time in a 50-year cycle.
Now onto the intuitive interpretation of all of this.
What it all means – the good stuff.
When I first noticed the placement of Mercury station retrograde, I was hit with significance. Mercury, on the precipice of crossing the Aries point and then making a conjunction with Chiron (to receive healing), is denied access. “You are not ready,” God says to Mercury. “Go back; get ready; and return when you think you are.”
Mercury is detriment in Pisces. Mercury (as representative of mind, thought, and communication) likes focus and clarity and understanding. Pisces is flooded with feelings and emotions. These sensations are subtle and can be overwhelming. When your emotions are flooded, your mind cannot think straight. We’ve all experienced this. When you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, your ability to focus is thwarted. [Often, that is the point!]
Mercury’s ability to focus and get himself ready is already handicapped by Pisces. His retrograde in Pisces is thus a double negative.
In math, multiplying one negative with another produces a positive. In English, a double negative can indicate a positive…of sorts. But consider the following two sentences:
I don’t want to not go.
I want to go.
Notice that if you don’t want to not go, that doesn’t necessarily mean you want to go, it just means you don’t want to stay. We speak in double negatives because they express our feelings in a subtly different way than the positive. It is nuanced. It is Piscean! That’s why Pisces is so good at Art!
Mercury’s double negative time in Pisces will teach him something. His time without clarity and without precise understanding will help him realize that mental data (visible, observable data) is only half the picture. What is unseen is there. What is subtle is there. No two people will see this kind of data the same way. (Often, two people don’t see the visible data the same way either.)
I sometimes think of the Aries point as a black hole. Pisces is the most receptive sign. As Mutable Water, Pisces is akin to floating in the middle of the ocean, influenced by all the waves passing by.
Aries is, in some ways, the most expressive sign. Every one of us has a piece of this: no exception. In the sun sign chart, we place the sun in the first house, which is because we are all individual, we all think our own thoughts, we are all here to express who we are (whether we do so boldly, freely, or subtly).
The Aries point joins these two vastly different vibrations. The Black Hole pulls everything into the center. Once we pass through it, we (in theory) are expelled out into the universe (through a Quasar perhaps).
The Aries point could also be viewed like birth and death, when we leave one realm and enter another.
What can Mercury do save allow himself to ride the waves? He can’t push through the Aries Point before his time. He can’t lessen his time in the sea.
What he can do is harmonize (a very Piscean concept) with his journey. He can let it have its way with him. He can gain from the experience what it is here to give him.
And he can allow his own readiness.
Focus is one way to make oneself ready. One can study for an exam. One can work out at the gym to build strength and put in the hours on the practice squad to get ready for the big game.
But readiness is also about the subtle. We need to rest too. We need to allow ourselves to believe in our own success. There are some who put in all of the study, all of the working out, all of the practice, and yet still fail to perform as they would want to. What’s missing? Readiness.
Have you ever experienced getting or reaching a desire before you were ready for it? Have you ever bought a car, then fretted over the driving of it being so afraid of scratching or denting it? Have you feared someone stealing a prized possession? Have you been plagued by jealousy worried someone would (or could) steal your beloved from you?
When you are ready to receive what you want, it must come (according to Abraham, according to law). When you are ready to have it, it will stick around.
It is possible to be ready to receive, but not ready to have. You create the receiving of what you want, but you stress in the having of it.
The best outcome, or the best feeling outcome, or the easiest experience is being ready to receive and ready to have. It will come easily and it will be fun in the having of it.
Maybe you’re not quite ready to go. And maybe you simultaneously don’t want to not go. Get ready. But don’t just use your mind. Don’t just study and workout and practice. Also allow. Pay attention to the subtle, the intuitive, the way it all feels. Then you’ll know when you’re ready and what you’re ready for.