Updated: Sep 25, 2019
The first two months of 2019 brought us a solar eclipse, two super moons, and a lunar eclipse. Now as we go into March, we experience the flavor of retrograde energy for the first time this year through our favorite retrograde planet — Mercury! God’s winged messenger is diving into the unseen realm to bring about it’s usual mayhem and confusion. Before we explore the specific energy around this retrograde and the other planetary happenings in March, let’s take a moment to understand what it really means when a planet is retrograde. The word ‘retrograde’ literally means ‘reverse’ or ‘opposite’. While planets don’t actually move backwards, during a retrograde due to it’s elliptical orbit and speed around the sun, it appears to be moving backwards. In astrology, retrograde planets symbolize a more internal energetic influence; during a retrograde the focus turns from a direct outward influence to an inward influence.
The usual advice when Mercury goes retrograde is ‘don’t travel, don’t sign important documents, don’t get married, hide under your bed!’, but, Mercury being so close to the sun and having a shorter elliptical orbit, goes retrograde more often than any other planet (although the Sun and Moon never go retrograde), about 4 times a year for at least a month at a time, so learning to work with this planetary alignment is probably more logical and in our best interest.
Now Mercury rules the mental realm in astrology, it rules communication and how we pick up, process, absorb, and exchange information. Naturally when this planet is in ‘reverse’ motion, it causes a certain amount of confusion in the areas that it governs. As the winged messenger goes into the underworld, we become more right brained and sensitive. It is dark in the underworld and we feel closer to spirit, more intuitive and our perspective, how we look at things, changes. We notice things that we had not noticed before, prompting us to re-evaluate, reform and renovate our notions of what we think we know. The thing though, is that while we are seeing things differently, things might also not be what they appear, because Mercury is also a ‘trickster’ archetype; so making any concrete and serious decisions is challenging with this influence.
Mercury also rules travel, short journeys and technology (along with Uranus) and the other more obvious influence of Mercury retrograde is technological mayhem that ensues as wires get crossed and computers and the internet stops cooperating and travel plans are delayed and rerouted. All these are under the rulership of tricky Mercury and vibrationally it is quite near impossible for it to not have an effect on our lives, being as technologically dependent and as close to Mercury in proximity as we are.
This particular Mercury retrograde that just started today, March 5th, has a sticky quality to it. First of all it’s in the sign of watery Pisces, a sign that Mercury is not the most comfortable in. In addition, the start of the retrograde is followed by a new moon in Pisces tomorrow, adding even more of a Neptunian flavor to this retrograde. Water signs are emotional signs, and Pisces is deep, deep waters of the Oceans and seas. The new moon in Pisces is a very dreamy, artistic influence that along with the retrograde, pulls us into our subconscious and deeper self, opening up our desires for romance, love, music and creative expression. The other element of all this Neptunian energy (Neptune is the ruler of Pisces) is a heightened urge to connect with the divine, enhancing our ability to tap into our spiritual awareness. So the month of March is full of this creative and spiritual inclination and is really where we can thrive much more than the mundane sphere of life.
The solution then, to not only surviving, but thriving during this particular retrograde, is to dive into our deeper awareness, and allowing ourselves to be inspired creatively. On a concrete level, this influence is good to study metaphysical subjects as well as play and listen to music and engage in activities that stimulate and help us flow with the creative life force within us. It is not a good time to have important conversations, specially in intimate relationships, and specially ones that involve the topics of trust, boundaries and honesty. Neptune along with being the planet of higher, spiritual love, is also the planet of illusions and deception, and it’s influence can feel slippery on our conscious minds.
Adding to this Neptunian influence, is the movement of the planet Uranus into the sign of Taurus also on March 6th. Uranus on the whole, is an unconventional planet. It is the archetype of the rebel, and represents sudden and explosive changes is also the planet that is associated with breakthroughs, originality, outside-the-box thinking, and inventiveness. Uranus is also a slow moving planet and tends to have a more ‘generational’ influence. In contrast to the eccentricity of Uranus, Taurus, the sign of the bull, is a very down to earth and grounded archetype. Taurus rules money, security, and material things. So, Uranus moving into Taurus translates to an overhaul of preexisting structure.
Astrologer Leslie Gabraith explains the influence of Uranus in Taurus in her blog in a very accurate way: “The last time Uranus was in Taurus was 1934, it retrograded back into Aries and fully moved in March of 1935 until 1942. This was the ending of the great depression and rise in popularity of fascism throughout Europe leading to World War II. If that historic period is any indication, we’re in for path-altering change on a global level. There will be a fundamental change in relationship to what we value.”
However, since Uranus spends about seven years in each sign as it moves through the zodiac, this period could last through 2026, so the shift it may inspire will also likely be a process, and not necessarily an immediate one. Given the rulership of Taurus over money and Uranus over forward thinking technological innovations, I think we can expect to see a huge shift in the way we handle our money and a big growth in the world of cryptocurrency.
The first Mercury retrograde of year promises to be pretty exciting. Specially the first half of the month with the additional influence of the New Moon and Uranus. I advice giving in to the watery pull of Pisces and allowing the retrograde energy to help you dive into your subconscious. Meditate, listen to music and make love and allow yourself to feel deeper emotions and the subtler vibrations of Spirit. You never know, your perceptions might open up to the deeper form of love in the language of the planets and in the Universe.
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