WTF Is Mercury Retrograde?
If you’ve heard the term ‘Mercury Retrograde’ but are totally in the dark as to what it actually means, keep reading, girl. We chatted to astrologer Dianne Garven about what it is, and what you should be doing about it First, let’s talk about Mercury
Mercury is commonly identified with Hermes (not the designer label, bbz, the Greek messenger of the gods). So since way back, Mercury has been the planet that’s said to rule communication – how we speak, what we say, and how we allow ourselves to accept and take meaning from things. On top of that, Mercury also rules travel, transport and technology.
So what is Mercury Retrograde?
Mercury Retrograde refers to the way in which the planet seems to constantly move backwards and forwards. Sure, Mercury isn’t actually moving – but the illusion has a deeper meaning for astrologers: turbulence and disruption while Mercury is in this phase of its orbit. This takes place three times a year, and usually lasts two to three weeks. In fact, as you read this, we’re currently deep in Mercury Retrograde (26 July to 19 August). The third (and final) Mercury Retrograde of 2018 will take place from 17 November to 6 December.
How does it affect us?
Because Mercury is the planet of communication, travel, transport and technology, these are the areas astrologers believe will be affected during its retrograde cycle. For example, something you say could cause a lot of anger and difficulty during this time, or your laptop may give you trouble.
Beware of contracts or agreements between people during Mercury Retrograde, too. ‘ You have to slow down and backtrack before you can move forward, just as Mercury appears to,’ explains Garven. For example, if you’re entering into a contract for a new job or buying a house, read and understand it, and only then sign it. If you don’t, there’s likely to be a delay or complications, says Garven.
Mercury Retrograde affects star signs in different ways, and the severity of its effect also depends on your natal chart and other variables, including where Mercury is in your individual chart and where the signs of Gemini and Virgo (the two signs the planet rules) are in your chart. While these variables are highly personal (you’d need a private reading to figure out the details), there are general rules for how Mercury Retrograde will likely affect you, according to your star sign.
How to survive Mercury Retrograde, according to your sign
In general, Mercury serves as a gentle reminder that everyone should slow down and not rush into things to avoid disasters or unnecessary conflict. It also teaches us that we have to be more aware of what we say because miscommunication is more likely to happen during Mercury Retrograde cycles.
How each star sign deals with Mercury Retrograde depends on the position of Mercury in your chart at the time, says Garven. If the event occurs when Mercury is in your star sign, then you may experience changes or difficulties. If you want to know where Mercury is in your chart, you’ll need to look it up at the time of a retrograde, because it is cyclical and constantly changing.
Turn the page for some general guidelines you can follow to cope with Mercury Retrograde.
Mercury Retrograde affects star signs in different ways – and the severity of its effect also depends on your natal chart