Mercury stations retrograde at 7:48 UT on the 12th March 2012 at 6ARI49.
The Sabian symbol for this degree is
A Man Succeeds In Expressing Himself Simultaneously In Two Realms
Mercury is the messenger between the Gods and humankind. He is the only God allowed passage to and from Hades. At one whether in the realm of heaven or on the earthly plane, Mercury personifies the concept of bringing things together. He unites.
Naturally he rules Gemini, the sign associated with making connections as well as Virgo, the sign associated with health. A functioning society needs its individual parts to communicate with each other, to give and take, to ebb and flow, to walk, to stand still, to speak and to listen. Without flexibility, communication or the willingness to work together, we are unable to fulfil our true potential.
When Mercury turns retrograde, he indicates to us that we must each turn within to reconcile the differences between our own inner voices. To listen, to stand back without judgement. To reflect.
We are spirits experiencing a human life. We work and play. Our daily lives are often far removed from our spiritual journey, even when we think we have our eye on the ball.
This week I took myself on an artist’s date for some creative inspiration. Blessed with the sunny day I’d been waiting for, I took my camera out into the city with the intention of snapping whatever caught my eye. After wandering for a while, I found myself at Manchester Cathedral. I had never been inside, so following a whim I went in.
I’m not a Christian but I was immediately struck by the peace inside. The evidence of prayer were tangible; a place made holy by the power of faith. Wandering beneath the stained glass windows and the great arches, I realised that the religion itself didn’t matter. It could be called by any number of names. All that mattered was that this place was blessed. The power of intention by the priests, whispered prayers from visitors and joyful songs sung to a beloved God emanated waves of healing.
Coming home from the Cathedral with healing waves still washing over me, I was struck by the contrast. I realised that my home also could, even should have that feeling of sanctuary, but right now it doesn’t. On the surface it’s tidy, but cracks are beginning to show – literally in places! The washing machine leaks, my cooker has a duff element, the curtain rail has just fallen down, it could do with a lick of paint. A recent leak in the roof has lifted the paper off one wall. I’ve been so focused on my work for so long, I’ve ignored the little problems. There are things I need to get rid of hiding in cupboards, books and objects to give away. My home feels tired instead of vibrant. Psychic debris hangs in the atmosphere. Mercury will retrograde through my 8th house, stationing sextile my natal Moon. It’s time to clear the detris!
Mercury will twice quincunx Saturn during this retrograde period – adjustments are called for. Something needs to shift. At the first quincunx on the 26th March, it may feel like trying to move a leaden weight but Mercury and Saturn together tell us to get things in order! Mercury always has a lot to do but without discipline (Saturn) he won’t really get anywhere. The second quincunx on the 12th April gives us another opportunity to tackle the job with a better insight on how to do it.
My focus for the next three weeks will be to clear my home in order to clear my mind. I lit a candle in the Cathedral, prayed for peace to the world. When I have finished cleansing my home, I will light a candle here too and recite a blessing in each room.
In order to move forward, sometimes we need to go back and exorcise old ghosts. As we walk a fine line balancing our personal and public lives, the material and spiritual worlds sometimes seem a long way apart. Mercury retrograding back through Aries into Pisces and back again says that to be truly ourselves (Aries), we must remember our soul (Pisces). It’s time to build a sanctuary, maybe even develop a spiritual discipline that we can put into practice on a daily basis. We are of two worlds, the spiritual and the material.
A Mercury Retrograde Mini Ritual
On the 21st March the Sun and Mercury meet in a conjunction. The Sun is illumination and purpose, Mercury communication and understanding. To draw upon the teachings of this retrograde period find a quiet moment to light a candle and clear your mind.
Spend a few minutes just in stillness. When you feel calm and centred, write down what you wish to learn or understand during this retrograde period. Once you have captured what you want to say, burn the paper in the candle flame and cast the ashes into running water. Keep a notepad by your bed to write down any dreams and watch for synchronicities.