Ends: July 20, 2013 @ 13 Cancer
Enters shadow: June 9, 2013
Leaves shadow: August 3, 2013
Yes, it's really true. Mercury is about to go retrograde for another three weeks. Just when you thought it was safe, and just as you got everything straightened out from the last one, here it is again. Luckily you're reading this, and are likely well aware of Mercury retrograde and all that it entails. And just in case you forgot something, I'm here to remind you. Mercury retrograde tends to toss a cosmic wrench in our plans, expectations, and assumptions. Sometimes, well, most of the time--for reasons we can't quite understand or explain. Hermes is a trickster; that's sort of its job. So, while all this is going on, we need to be exceptionally cautious, conscious, and aware. We also need a good sense of humor. So first off, take a deep breathe, and let yourself relax. That's important. There's going to be some kinks in the flow of things; it's just the way it is. Whatever usually works out without a hitch, is going to find itself a little unglued and slightly out of sorts.
Why? Well, we could say that Mercury retrograde is a time where we're guided to all those loose ends and weak spots that got seemingly overlooked. And while that's all well and good, shit just happens. It's Mercury retrograde. So what's usually most targeted here? All things Mercurial, which involve all forms of communication and travel. In this high tech saturated culture of ours, Mercury has just so many more options at its disposal. This is when your smart phone drops in its IQ score and your laptop decides to blow up.Your appointments get switched around or forgotten about entirely. All your light bulbs suddenly need changing and little stray bullets in the form of rocks start flying off the freeway to help beautify your windshield. Ah yes, Mercury retrograde is a load of fun. So, when all else fails, just laugh along and go for the ride; it's usually funny--unless it ends up costing a lot of money, but then again, a few years from now, you'll find it amusing. Or maybe not.
So what can you do? You can pay way more attention than you usually do and try to remain flexible with your plans. That means that Mercury retrograde is usually not ideal for going forward with really important matters because, most often, something is missing. This whole process brings our attention dynamically to those blind spots that just now start popping up all over the place. It's time to be exceptionally meticulous with the details and to make sure all your communications are clear and well presented. Misunderstandings are notorious, so be straightforward and ask lots of questions to make sure there is common ground and understanding.
As for all that mundane business stuff--it's pretty common advice that one should refrain from making serious commitments or signing pertinent contracts. When Mercury is retrograde we're in a process of revision. That means it's ideal for back-tracking and double checking all that you've been working on up until this point, but not so ideal for making that final deal or decision. Work out the kinks and be experimental. The less attachment you have right now the better it'll work out in your favor. In the weeks leading up to Mercury retrograde we can sometimes get ahead of the game if we know what needs to be fixed or adjusted. Taking care of it before hand can often save us from more complications once the retrograde process actually begins.
The last two obvious components of Mercury retrograde deal with a revision of our knowledge base and a redirection of our focus and attention. Have an open mind; this is really important. It's very common that we'll uncover information, ideas, opinions, or perceptions that we would normally ignore or disregard because it doesn't mesh with our current perspective. While Mercury is retrograde, the mind is in a more receptive state than usual, and it would be wise to explore alternate perceptions, because you never know what kind of impact it could have. Mercury retrograde can also redirect our focus towards a specific area of life, bringing us back to something that we've left behind; we now find ourselves resurrecting and redeveloping it in a new a different light. The specific house(s) in our natal horoscope containing Mercury retrograde will uncannily describe this exact area of attention and focus.
Mercury retrograde can really serve as an astonishingly useful cycle if we can just work around all the ubiquitous irritations. The mind is so linearly focused most of the time, and yet, nature has a built in process which redirects and resets this narrow and limited perception. In reality, our activities are guided and immersed within cycles and what goes around comes around. Use this as a time out, to back track and look over the path you've been following--retrace the breadcrumbs. Past and unresolved material may resurface at these times, involving specific people, ideas, situations, or experiences. The more receptive you are to resolving or adjusting whatever shows up for you, the more productive and potentially rewarding your Mercury retrograde experience will be.
In step with the Trickster archetype, Mercury retrograde acts as catalyst helping us to cross or dissolve boundaries. It is during these cycles that the normal rules of the game get changed around right in front of our noses, yet outside of our normal awareness. What is required is a different lens from which to view the flow of events in our lives; we need a sort of trickster gaze and strategy. That means deliberately moving beyond our customary ways of interacting with life, and opening up, humbly, to an alternate dimension. It is when we surrender to the lessons provided by this new reality that we really grow and evolve beyond the known and familiar perceptions. When we continue pushing forward with what we think is the "right" way of doing it, we often come out rather frustrated and feeling like a fool.
Mercury Retrograde In Cancer
Mercury will retrograde through the tropical sign of Cancer. Mercury's retrograde cycle this round coincides with the ingress of Jupiter into Cancer and ends with a Mars/Jupiter conjunction in July. As Jupiter enters Cancer, on June 26th, there's likely to be a sense of reprieve, of being able to settle down and catch your bearings. Exalted in Cancer, Jupiter can finally catch its breath from all that Geminian mental madness. Settle down, get comfortable, and set some strong roots. Mercury's retrograde through Cancer allows us to look over our foundation and to make sure we're rooted somewhere and that we have some sense of establishment. This is important, because in the month ahead things are going to be seriously tested; we want to make sure that we have a firm position placed so that we don't catch ourselves without a leg to stand on.
While Jupiter moved through Gemini (from Summer 2012 until the end of June) we had to grapple with a hailstorm of dichotomy; a tidal wave of choices, options, and contemplation. If handled well, we were able to sample a lot of information and experiment with different methods. However, trying to make sense of the bigger picture may have been the most challenging, if not flat out impossible. Now it's time to check in with our more subtle sense impressions, to adjust our reactions, and to get clear about how we're feeling. Trust yourself, and trust what you sense is going on. Relying more on intuition will be a lot more productive than getting stuck in your head. This is a time to make sure you're comfortable with where you are, that everything feels right, and that you have room to maneuver about without restriction.
Mercury retrograde in Cancer can bring about a powerful wave of nostalgia; we may feel suddenly drawn toward the past or a longing to return to some past experience or situation that provided a feeling of safety or comfort. Past relationships may play a prominent role and we can expect the reemergence of old friends, connections, or family members to be a key element of this particular cycle. Whatever shows up for you, do your best remain receptive to adjustments that need to be made, or loose ends that require tying up. We may also get redirected toward feelings, impressions, or emotions that we haven't properly processed or expressed--allowing for a gentle release and expression to take place.
This is also a time where we can receive insight into the deeper nature of our reactions, and to work out any flaws we notice within this internal space. Take time out to nurture yourself, take it easy, and be gentle. There's been so much to process lately, especially in this post eclipse phase. Use this retrograde cycle to to feel your way through whatever you're working with, and take your time with it. The past two months brought about a lot of changes, internally and externally. Mercury's retrograde cycle is going to provide the chance to get comfortable with all of this, and to familiarize ourselves with this new undigested material. The best way to do that is to relax, slow down, and trust the process.
As Mercury enters the shadow period (June 9th), it will be coming out of a T-square configuration with both Uranus and Pluto. This is rather significant because toward the end of the retrograde cycle (July 20th), Mercury will have entered back into this T-square once more, just before turning stationary direct. This reveals that the energies behind the Uranus/Pluto square will be a major theme to this retrograde cycle, urging us all to connect with a powerful impetus to change the foundation of our personal lives. At the initial stages of the retrograde shadow we begin thinking about what we want to transmute--during the retrograde we get a chance to actually rework our strategy based on our intuitive feelings and hunches. Once Mercury goes direct we'll be in a much more stable and clear position to actually begin to implement and move forward.
So as you feel this need to really break free from something--stop, pause, and reflect on what's motivating these feelings on a deeper level. There's a lot more to explore here than what we see on the surface and we need to get clear about our true motivations and agenda. The only way to do that is to really check in with yourself and get in tune with your emotions. This Mercury retrograde cycle is a preparation phase for when Jupiter enters this alignment mid July and additionally forms some miraculous configurations opening up fresh, expansive, and creative opportunities. Lead with your heart and not with your head--or rather, let your heart guide your mind to what is truly aligned with the highest purpose. That's always easier said than done, but Cancer's ultimate strategy is most definitely heart-centered.
Significant Retrograde Activity
June 9th- Mercury enters initial shadow period: This is the segway process into the actual retrograde itself, certain themes and issues that we'll be working on will start popping up now. So pay attention.
June 26th- Mercury goes stationary retrograde
June 30th--Moon square Mercury
July 8th--Moon conjunct Mercury
July 9th--Mercury conjoins the Sun: A symbolic midpoint of the retrograde, and a powerful "new beginning" in regards to Mercury's cycle around the Sun. Pay close attention to what gets activated at this point, a process of development will unfold for the next three months, until the next retrograde cycle.
July 15th--Moon square Mercury
July 20th--Mercury goes stationary direct: This is the segway process that will take us out of the retrograde, this is the time to tie up loose ends and put on finishing touches.
August 3rd--Mercury leaves shadow