Sometimes the other planets appear to be traveling backward through the zodiac; this is an illusion. We call this illusion retrograde motion.

Mercury’s retrograde periods can cause our plans to go awry. However, this is an excellent time to reflect on the past. Intuition is high during these periods, and coincidences can be extraordinary. I’ve enjoyed this retrograde (which ends Feb. 28th) by being patient and taking this time to re-connect, re-focus, and re-direct positive energy and intentions into re-structuring elements of my life; home, work, and my plans for the future.

When Mercury is retrograde, remain flexible, allow time for extra travel, and avoid signing contracts. Review projects and plans at these times, but wait until Mercury is direct again to make any final decisions.

Although it is often a challenging period, the purpose of Mercury retrograde is to review and revise our lives and our connection with reality. Mercury has an orbit that at times gets ahead of the Sun allowing us to look into the future toward new and innovative ideas. However, we cannot continue in that vein – we come back to the present and put our new ideas into manifestation. We bring the ideas back into the present to test and evaluate to see how they fit into our life.

Mercury itself rules how we think; we will be adjusting everything related to thoughts, concepts, ideas, and communication, and especially how technology and material elements play a part in the manifestation of ideas. When Mercury retrogrades, we find that many parts of our life are being revised. Often these revisions can be a surprise or throw us back a step. However, these revisions which occur during retrograde are a “course correction” and provide a stop gap measure until we can review our situations. This will be especially true with changing our minds, reviewing new ideas and our communication being improved and honed so not to be misunderstood.

 All three 2014 Mercury retrogrades begin in water signs and near the same 2-3 degree of first Pisces, then Cancer and finally Scorpio.  Every cycle crosses back into the air signs before each, first Aquarius, then Gemini and last, but not least Libra.

The dates of the next Mercury retro cycles are June 7th to July 2nd; and October 4th to 25th.

It’s looking like a year with Mercury, to see with some airy objectivity the layers of meaning in personal experience — memories, impressions, longings.  Instead of being submerged, there could be a recovery of what’s most meaningful, and possibly sharing your discoveries.

These times for the translator seem to give emotional experience a voice.  Instead of numbing ourselves to it or escaping into distraction, Mercury guides us into the role of observer.  It reminds me of stories of near death experiences, and hovering over the scene.  When there’s a lot of drama, fear and angst, the retrograde is a pull back – a seeing as if from a distance.

Mercury comes from the Latin word merx, or mercator, which means merchant. Mercury is the name given by the ancient Romans to the Greek mythological god Hermes.

Mercury is depicted as a male figure having winged sandals and a winged hat, indicating the ability to travel quickly. He was the official messenger of the ancient gods and goddesses and, as such, governed communications.

In astrology, Mercury influences travel, literature, poetry, merchants, and thieves. He is cunning and witty at a moment’s notice. But he is also recognized as a trickster and prone to misbehavior.

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