Making a Deal with Mercury, the Archetypal Planetary Wheeler
It would seem that the term "Mercury Retro" has been
slowly seeping into popular consciousness and has taken on an
honorary role in Sun Sign astrology.
fact, unless they've been hiding under a rock, the average person
knows that there are 12 Zodiac signs and something nefarious
called "Mercury Retrograde."
Commerce, and Everyday Routines
The astrological planet Mercury, named for the wing-footed Roman
god of "communications, commerce, and
everyday routines," seldom gets much attention in astrology.
That is... he seldom gets much attention until those (3 to 4
times) times each year that he briefly turns "retrograde"
in the transiting (moving) sky.
When Mercury turns "retrograde," the archetypal planet
of communications, Mercury suddenly gets blamed for just about
anything (and everything) that does or might go "wrong."
Planets in General
For the "uninitiated," a retrograde planet is a planet
that (when viewed from the perspective of the earth) appears
to have stopped and then temporarily reverses its regular movement
through the sky. The planet then goes "retrograde"
a certain length of time (depending upon the planet involved),
the planet then appears to once again stop and reverse its movement
through the sky. The planet then goes "direct" and
is back on it's normal cyclic path through the sky.
The traditional astrological meaning assigned to Mercury
going "retrograde" in the sky is that one should prepare
for and gird themselves for unexpected delays, frustrations,
and surprises in everyday life. This includes everyday routines
in commerce, commuting back and forth to work, and in one's
During the (very) approximate 24 day periods when Mercury turns
"retrograde" in the sky, in the area of commerce,
astrologers generally recommend delaying the signing of contracts
and/or delaying any other important life decisions. It is a
period of time thought to be better spent in reflection and
in the rethinking of things.
since Mercury Retrograde generally occurs 3 to 4 times a year,
one cannot rationally put everything "on hold" every
time mischievous Mercury decides to go "retro." That's
why I stated "one should prepare for and gird themselves
for unexpected delays, frustrations, and surprises."
Lighter (or perhaps Deeper) Side of Mercury Retro
an ancient Roman saying: “Vocatus atque non vocatus deus
aderit.” Called or not called, the god will be there.
Taking heed of and honoring this ancient Roman maxim is so powerful
that I've got this plaque hanging next to my front door.
to astrologer Richard Idemon, the ancient Greeks had a saying
that, when passing by the temple of a god, you must honor the
god by "offering the appropriate sacrifice at the appropriate
time." The point being that one should never offend the
gods by ignoring them. Bad, bad, bad form ignoring the gods!
god Mercury or Hermes (his Greek counterpart) in retrograde
is inevitably going to come calling, regardless of our best-laid
plans and organizational skills. So... instead of ducking and
running for cover - we might as well look further into how to
creatively make better use of and honor his regular visits.
How? We offer Mercury the appropriate sacrifice at the appropriate
- the Planet of New Beginnings
is the god of the unexpected, of luck, of coincidence, of
'synchronicity.' The ancient Greeks would say: 'Hermes has
entered our midst,' whenever a sudden silence had entered
the room, descended on conversation and introduced into the
meeting another dimension.
things seem fixed, rigid, 'stuck,' Hermes introduces fluidity,
motion, new beginnings - as well as the confusion which inevitably
precedes new beginnings." Arianna (Stassinopoulos) Huffington,
The Gods of Greece
preside over moments of passage, rupture and transformation.”
Dr. R. S. Tannen The Female Tricksters
are you stuck? Where do you need a new beginning? Mercury (Hermes)
in retrograde will be glad to help "unstuck" you and
provide you with that new beginning.
all... Mercury (Hermes) is the archetypal deal-maker and broker
within the horoscopic chart, and as such he'll be more than
glad to strike a mutually beneficial deal with you!
Rigid, Too Stuck
Yep! It's normally only when we're too rigid and stuck in our
worn out ruts that Mercury (Hermes) in his role of trickster
springs out from behind a bush and reveals himself in the guise
of a malicious bogey-man.
(Hermes) - Deep Healer of Soul
in Hermes we have a figure who signifies a union between an
innate tendency on the part of the psyche to create boundaries
and define spaces… He signifies the creative instinct
at work in the psyche in a particular way.
specific type of creator god, he is the creator of new spaces.
It is in the creation of new spaces, novel spaces, inventive
spaces, especially psychologically subtle spaces that Hermes
shows his special nature and genius.” From the 1999
article “Hermes and the Creation of Space” by
“ Without Hermes, there are no transitions, only endless
repetitions, a psychopathology without a God.” In
Midlife: A Jungian Perspective, Murray Stein
That's incredibly powerful news! Hermes (Mercury) is the creator
of new spaces, and the god of transitions; and without Hermes'
(Mercury's) seeming chaos, there are only endless repetitions!
that slowly seep into your synapses!
believe it or not, the mischievousness of Mercury gone wild
in retrograde - by virtue of getting us "unstuck"
and setting us free from endless repetitions - can potentially
be a deep healer of soul...
To The Gold
In her book, The Gods in Everyman, archetypal author
Jean Bolen uniquely points out that the physical substance of
the liquid metal Mercury only adheres to precious metals...
thus - metaphorically speaking - the archetypal substance of
Mercury can show us the way to spiritual gold...
Z's Rule of Thumb
Whenever Mercury is in retrograde the rule of thumb is that
whatever you do in the area of everyday routines in commerce,
commuting back and forth to work, and in one's communications
- it's not typically going to go as smoothly as you thought
Remain flexible. If necessary, be prepared to "punt the
ball." Have a backup plan. In fact, have two backup plans!
Breath deeply. This, too, shall pass...
December 10-29, 2010
30 – April 23, 2011
August 2 – 26, 2011
November 24 – December 13, 2011
March 12 – April 4, 2012
July 14 – August 8, 2012
November 6 – 26, 2012
23 - March 17, 2013
June 26 - July 20, 2013
October 21 - November 10, 2013
6 - 28, 2014
June 7 - July 1, 2014
October 4 - 25, 2014
21 - February 11, 2015
May 18-19 - June 11, 2015
September 17 - October 9, 2015
Alert: As a top destination, Dr Z's article on Mercury
Retrograde appears to be rather popular for folks choosing
to copy and paste large uncredited portions into
their own various blogs and/or articles. Mercury might approve
of your outright thievery, but Dr Z doesn't. So - when doing
this - please at least give Dr Z credit for any quotes and
provide a link to his site. Karma, karma, karma...