<p style=”text-align: justify;”>Mercury turns retrograde on February 23 2013 its journey takes us through constellations Pegasus, Aquarius, the Phoenix and the Sculptor. Pegasus makes tall promises for the future. It is a visionary constellation but with it also comes high expectations, so you better darn well prove that your money is where your mouth is! This is an ambitious, sky-scraping area of the cosmos and has Uranian qualities of genius and flashes of intuition. This area contains many stars known for having prophetic ability. However it’s volatile, impulsive nature sometimes shows bad judgement and capriciousness, so be careful not to skid on the slippery watersnake. In your dreams you will gladly go with the flow of the mythical river Eridanus only to be rudely awakened by a freezing bucket of Aquarian water. Mercury will travel through the later half of Pisces decan 1 and all of Pisces decan 2
Mercury goes retrograde and the traditional advice is “Don’t travel”, “Don’t sign contracts”, “Don’t marry” or “Don’t look at your computer or it will blow up!” But the whole Mercury retrograde cycle actually lasts eight weeks and happens three times, sometimes even four times in a year! That’s a long time to hide under the duvet and a real waste of a truly magical time.
Mercury generally zips between two worlds, or rather, the two hemispheres of our brain. So during the retrograde period it is like Mercury has gone down into the Underworld. In the realm closer to spirit we become more right-brain orientated. It is dark, so other senses are heightened. We will feel extra sensitive here, psychic even. Everything will seem hyper-real… you will notice things you had overlooked before. This will prompt you to re-evaluate, renovate, re-invent, re-form, and reinvent. It’s true you might have to redo things, because Mercury will hit the same degree three times, but what this transit won’t let you do is to go into autopilot.
There are danger spots though. When Mercury is stationing retrograde we are at the wobbly stage where we are likely to slip up, make mistakes, and misread another’s communications. But once we are over the threshold and into the Underworld, we can safely go about out business knowing we are in another realm. The same goes for when it is stationing direct – give our brain a few days to adjust back to solar thinking. Whichever houses Mercury retrogrades in, will be your Underworld zone. Here you will question everything. It will make you jittery about signing contracts, because you will be constantly thinking, “Is this what I really want?”. Before the retrograde, is a good time to finish off those Solar left-brain projects and gather information to bring down into your cave at its retrograde point. Then you can slow things down, let yourself be taken into other dimensions, try on different filters, experiment, shine a light on your demons, then recharge and reboot.
Mercury into shadow
Mercury enters the shadow zone February 9, starting on fixed star Biham in Pegasus’s head. This is a fantastic opportunity to brainstorm with like-minded intellectuals. We get this influence for the Lady luck New Moon on February 10. The centaur and the messenger coast along together around February 11-12. Mars is still within heating up distance. People may wound with words and you may notice some Internet tantrums when the Moon ignites this fiery conjunction in the flying horse’s head. After Valentines Day we get Mercury square Lilith. I think we may see some Valentine fallout when a spouse uncovers some saucy messages from a lover. Dangerous days…As Mercury slows down we get a very interesting learning triangle between Mars/Mercury, Ceres/Lilith and the North Node that will lasts until February 28. This is our Mercury retrograde lesson.
Mercury Station Retrograde
From February 23 then, we get Lilith conjunct Ceres which is very much a Persephone aspect. The most powerful theme here is either having ones childhood stolen or being a child stealer yourself. This doesn’t have to be negative, it could even be something like winning a child custody battle. This aspect can also be healing with herbs or numbing pain with medication. This squares the ongoing Mercury/Mars conjunction, at worst this could be drug-fuelled arguments and domestic violence. The media may broadcast more rape stories, violence against women or a child abduction, something that will cause a storm of protest much like the Delhi Rape case recently. Lilith is actually on Hoedus in the twin kid goats, so there could be some sexual scandal for the media to get hysterical over. The sleaze factor is very high over this period. However the media reports these unfortunate incidents, it will be seen as overly sensationalized and distasteful.
The North Node connects Lilith/Ceres and Mercury/Mars for karmic balancing, ironically the North Node is on Zubenelschemali the northern scale of constellation Libra. This is the fortunate scale, therefore hopefully the public outrage I mentioned should provoke justice being done and for some quality control over the mass media. On March 2 Mercury aligns with Ankaa in the Phoenix, the learning triangle dissolves and lessons are learned as we rise up out of the flames.
March 3 our thoughts are liquid as we surrender to fate while floating along the religious star Achernar in the river. “Well-placed, it promises happiness and success by giving good morals, faithful adherence to one’s religious beliefs or philosophical inclinations. According to tradition, Achernar is credited with bestowing high offices in the church”.  A person of good moral standing will mop up the mess brought to a head at the February 25 Full Moon. Mercury slithers tentatively through the watersnake on March 5 while at the same time making a stunning stellium with both Chiron and Venus. They all make a magical minor grand trine with a Moon conjunct Pluto triggering the Saturn sextile Pluto bringing “steely determination and endurance which is put to practical use to create something of value, something lasting.” to the cosmic table.
March 6 is the cold shower of Aquarian awakening! Wow, this is a great opportunity for healing relationships that have been suffering from Mercury retro miss-understandings. Don’t miss this perfect opportunity for a really deep, heart-to-heart with a loved one. Reconciliations and rekindling the flames of passion are well starred until March 9. Mercury starts to slow down as it approaches the head of Pegasus once more. While it does so we get an intense Sun square Ceres “There seems to be a theme of loss, abuse and pain…triumph over adversity.” And also in the sky a Lilith square Venus which tends to emphasize triangular relationships. This may bring a resolution to issues brought up at the start of this retrograde period.
Mercury Station Direct
Mercury stations direct on March 17 in the romantic, clever, but hissy Swan. Ingenious solutions to relationship problems with a sudden surge of intellectual clarity and focus take us out of this intense but very healing Mercury retrograde. Mercury forms a tender alliance with Chiron as it moves out of the shadow and on March 29 it forms a stunning merger of two aspects patterns, a “Model” and a “Bathtub” (or double Yod) in Esoteric astrology. This is like a blueprint or an architects drawing. Moon conjunct Saturn is all about foundation building, creating the family nest or a solid business base. Keep these grand plans under wraps for the moment if you can contain your excitement that is! You can unveil them with a grand fanfare on April 6 when Mercury is out of the shadow and we have a lovely marriage of Venus conjunct Mars in the sky.
Mercury Retrograde Dates
February 9 – Mercury enters retrograde at 5° Pisces 38′
February 23 – Mercury stationary retrograde at 19° Pisces 52′
9.41am GMT, 4.41 am EST, 1:41 am PST
March 17- Mercury stationary direct at 5° Pisces 38′
8.03pm GMT, 4.30pm EDT, 1.03pm PDT
April 6 - Mercury leaves retrograde zone at 19° Pisces 52′