Mercury turns retrograde once more on March 22nd and returns to direct motion again on April 15th. As I noted in my latest radio show, Mercury and all the other planets never reverse direction at all. (You can listen to my podcast on Mercury retrograde. It begins at about 11:30 minutes into the podcast, which you can get to by just clicking in the progress bar until you reach that time in the show). Here is the link to the show: Radio Show on Mercury Retrograde and the Equinox.
All the planets merely appear to move backwards for a time, three weeks in the case of Mercury, about three times a year, and upwards of six months for an outer planet like Saturn or Uranus, once per year. Whenever Mercury is retrograde, you are asked to bend your thoughts inward, to re-consider what and how you know, to truly make a better effort to follow the path of Spirit where there is but one certain truth, that the way to Wisdom is “to know thyself”.
Though many will complain that Mercury retrograde is the root cause of many mistakes, errors and misunderstandings, that is not the fault of Mercury. As the bard Shakespeare so eloquently put it, "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings." The planets and stars create modulations of the twelve-fold energy-forms of this universe. But what we make of those gifts of the spirit, well that depends upon our spiritual development, it depends upon our degree of intelligence, wisdom and love.
As we grow into our greater awareness, we will become as wise as a serpent, and equally gentle as a dove. All great souls possess these traits, and each of us will come into this state of grace someday. Meanwhile, it is best for us all to be humble, to understand that our progress is certain but slow, and it depends upon each of us being awake, alert and self-reflective.
The opportunity offered to you in this retrograde can be ascertained in two ways. One is by understanding what sign is involved in the retrograde. The second way, is by knowing through what part of your own chart the retrograde is taking place. Since the latter quality is a very individual factor, let us consider what the retrograde in Aries can do for you.
The experience of Aries is to bring you into the realm of what I call your “presence”. No matter what, the most important thing to be conscious of, in each and every moment, is to be completely focused upon how you meet with what is right before you now. For this is the only space in which you can experience your freedom to be and become fully human one day. Yes, you must look back at all your prior experiences and consider what you have learned; and yes, you must equally look forward to the better you and world you wish to create. But the only thing that counts in each and every step, the most critical moment of all, is how you meet this moment right here, right now.
To that end, Mercury retrograde in Aries can be an instrument for guiding you to be that much more aware of yourself, to consider the importance of your presence. By truly understanding how you appear, and of how you affect those around you, you will be able to more creatively and consciously make the most of every potential held in each of these "precious pearls of the now" in your life.
Mercury will turn you back on yourself so that you can see that if you enter a space, or greet someone with a certain attitude and intention, that you will inevitably shape this experience one way or another. What you must know is that this is the only place you have control to bring about a better outcome for yourself or others. Your first step, your first gestures and words, they are the means to advance your story or repeat the errors of your past.
By keeping your self-awareness focused on the now, through a deeper self-reexamination of past mistakes or missteps, you can learn to present yourself in a manner that is more appropriate to every situation. You can positively influence and forge a better outcome, by breaking a chain of causation that may have circumscribed your life (and the life of one or many others), by just choosing to be a better, more enlightened and self-aware actor in the now.
Of course, everything matters in this encounter with the now, how you are dressed, how you hold yourself, how you move, but the most important consideration is the state of your self-awareness, your presence of mind is the key.
As you turn every corner, as you enter each room, consider carefully what you are bringing into that space as much as what you encounter in it.
Oftentimes, I will “remind myself” of this. I will, quite literally gently slap myself in the face as I come to the turn in "the path", and I will say to myself, “Now stay alert, be prepared…your future is just around the bend!”
May you be as wise as a serpent, and gentle as a dove.
May you walk the path of Wisdom.
May you choose to stand in the Light.