While delays and misunderstandings do seem to happen, I’ve noticed a magical trend — that people and ideas return, for integration, resolution and more.
Mercury is the messenger, and in this time, the delivery is warped or the message gets lost en route. Some people find that their computers go on the fritz or phone lines go down. If you’re at all jittery about it, go ahead and back up your important files.
There can be delays, so give yourself plenty of time to get places. What happens in those down times? Mercury retro is known to be a time of ‘fated’ events — who will you meet? What will be revealed?
Err on Side of Caution:
What is Mercury Retrograde?
All of the planets move in the same direction around the Sun, each with a different rate of speed. Mercury’s orbit is 88 days long; therefore approximately 4 orbits of Mercury around the Sun equals 1 Earth year. —
Periodically, Mercury appears to slow down, then stop, (stationary retrograde) and then move slowly backwards for several weeks (retrograde). Eventually, it appears to stop again and reverse direction (stationary direct) moving slowly forward once again (direct). Eventually Mercury appears to return to its normal orbital speed.
This occurs because Mercury travels faster than the Earth, and it periodically catches up with Earth, passing us by. When Mercury “goes retrograde” it does not actually slow down, stop and move backwards. It only appears to do so. This phenomenon occurs near Mercury’s inferior conjunction to the Sun—as Mercury passes closest to the Earth, between the Earth and the Sun. This phenomenon has to do with the relative speed of the Earth and Mercury as well as their relationship to each other at a particular point in their orbits. There are threeMercury Retrograde periods each year, each lasting approximately 3 weeks.
What does Mercury Retrograde mean?
In mythology, Mercury is the messenger of the gods. Astrologically, the planet Mercury is said to be associated with or to rule all activities that relate to communications, travel, learning such as:
- signing agreements
- classes and schools
- sending correspondence
- communications equipment such as computers, radios, and phones
- traveling and travel equipment such as cars, bicycles, trains, and planes
Classically, Mercury retrograde periods are not considered ideal
for engaging in Mercury related activities such as:
- placing ads
- making important decisions
- purchasing communications equipment
- signing contracts
- initiating business deals
- sending important correspondence or any type of message
- starting school or any important project
- beginning any new enterprise (as plans may be reversed later)
A Mercury retrograde period is thought to be excellent for:
- reviewing and revising plans
- catching up on old business
- cleaning out the metaphorical closet
- deeply considering issues
like everything else in life, these rules are not steadfast and your experiences may differ from these generalities. Never let the planets rule your life! If you simply must sign a contract or begin a new job when Mercury is retrograde, go for it!
While some of us are very sensitive to Mercury cycles and find that certain activities become difficult during retrograde periods, while others experience no such problems. How you experience Mercury has a lot to do with planetary placements at your birth, as well as with current planetary positions. The best way to understand how Mercury retrograde periods impact you is to track your own experience. Check the dates that Mercury is retrograde to track how sensitive you are to this cycle.