November 16th ~ 23rd
The heart lies and the head plays tricks with us, but the eyes see true. Look with your eyes. Hear with your ears. Taste with your mouth. Smell with your nose. Feel with your skin. Then comes the thinking, afterward, and in that way knowing the truth. ~ George R. R. Martin
We may not know if we are coming or going this week. No sooner does Venus finally station Direct on Friday, then Mercury halts for its station Retrograde. Both of these inner planets will appear to hover in the sky, briefly still, yet all the more brilliant and intense. Venus has reclaimed her status of Morning Star, and will be at its brightest in the early skies from now until early December. Because Venus is so bright right now, you can see her even up to a half hour before sunrise. For the 6 weeks that Venus has been in its retrograde phase we have been reacquainting ourselves with our own priorities and values, as well as sorting out our mutual expectations of each other, and relationships in general. And although many relationships tend to suffer during this time, the end game is about opening our hearts to greater possibility in the long run, not less.
Venus also has to do with possessions, money, and sustainability. So these were also being sorted out, as we came to realize those things that we need, those things that we want, those things we can do without, and those things which we now know have to be prioritized. Once Venus begins to pick up speed again, we are going to be given the opportunity to apply the principles that we have been contemplating and mulling over: where do we need to cut back; where do we need to set appropriate limits; and what do we need to do in order to balance out the ledger sheets.
Now that Venus will be direct, it should be easier to make compromises and reach agreements. We are more in tune with what we want and/or need, and therefore better able to see the value of people and things in our lives. However, no sooner have we sorted out all these tricky inter-relationships and financials, then even trickier Mercury comes to create its own inimitable havoc in our lives. Back up the computers and secure all your files! It’s time to review the Mercury Retrograde itinerary:
communications and technology break down; no one seems to understand you; your cell phone dies or falls in the toilet; you lose all your data; people argue over nothing; commuting is a lesson in patience (or a veritable hell realm); the computer has a mind of its own (neither do you have the time to deal with it, so you make do); flights are delayed or cancelled; you lost your passport any way; and if you get on the plane, your luggage doesn’t; appointments keep changing, or people forget they have appointments; you keep getting distracted and find it impossible to keep on point.
My mother was born when Mercury was retrograde, and during these phases she would suddenly be the voice of clarity. While the rest of us were walking into walls and tripping over each other, she was sharp as a tack. So if, like my mother, you were born during a Mercury retrograde phase, you may actually be sharper, clearer and more productive, unlike the rest of us making critical typos, and uttering the usual faux pas. However, these periods are actually critical and important times of assimilation and review for everyone, which is necessary for our mental health, understanding and well-being. Here are some things that Mercury retrograde periods are actually good for:
Unfinished Business: All those projects that you’ve been meaning to get to, but haven’t had the time or wherewithal to deal with, now’s your opportunity. Mercury retro periods are great for tying up loose ends, clearing up those files, going through those piles of papers. Removing the clutter from your environment also creates clarity in your mind.
Mindfulness and Stress techniques: Anxiety levels are often amplified during these periods. All the more reason to learn about and practice stress reduction practices such as, mindfulness based stress techniques, meditation, therapy, and other modalities that address anxiety. Mercury also has domain over the breath, therefore it is helpful to remember when you are feeling stressed, to take some deep calming breaths. They work wonders. Often when we are stressed, we tend to breathe very shallowly. Just by changing the way we breathe can affect our whole mental and emotional well being.
Reunions: These are often times of reflection, review, going back over things, and that includes people and places that were once important to us. Class reunions, family reunions, going back home, are all positive and meaningful retrograde events. Allow yourself to reflect, reminisce, remember and laugh about the old times you shared together.
Insights: In order to get the most benefit from this period, schedule in some quiet and down time. This will allow you to check in with yourself and gain deeper understanding through introspection and contemplation. While Mercury is still in Sagittarius (up until December 1st) this particular retrograde period will be especially good for walking meditations and silent hikes. Now thru the 21st will be especially beneficial for this type of quiet reflection.
Releasing: Letting go of unresolved issues. Often these are periods in which we are required to practice patience, understanding and forgiveness. Forgiving does not mean that you think other people’s bad behavior is necessarily okay, it means that you are ready to move on and put it to rest.
Research: It is not unusual for us to change our minds more than once as Mercury appears to do its ritual dance. And we don’t always have all the information we need. Therefore it is not recommended to make important decisions at this time. However, that does not mean you cannot do the research and make yourself better informed. At the latter part of the retrograde period, from December 1st thru the 12th, Mercury will be in Scorpio, the sign of the investigator, and inquiring minds will want to know the truth. What you learn could be quite important or meaningful for when Mercury stations Direct again on December 6th.
What to watch for:
Communications: This is usually the bane of our existence at these times. Mail gets lost. Things are misunderstood or taken out of context. Phones don’t work. Simply can’t get all the information you need to make an informed decision. Can cause all sorts of problems! Mercury is square Neptune until the 22nd which is great weather for misinformation, deception, lies and more lies. Make sure that you are being heard and understood, and make sure that you are hearing others clearly. Not the best time for important decisions or having that discussion. Wait until Mercury is direct again.
Signing on the dotted line: Many a business will still be started, and inevitable contracts will need to be signed during these critical times. However, it is all the more important to make sure that you know what you are getting yourself into, and that it’s what you really want to do. Check the details carefully, and if in doubt, don’t. You may want to have a 3rd party go over any contracts or agreements, before signing. Just realize things may need to be re-done later on. It is also not unusual for there to be delays. If that is the case, it is probably for the best.
Technology: No words for this. Go forth forewarned.
Schedules and Plans: Flexibility is key for these times. Mercury is now in the sign of Sagittarius, the sign of ‘travel’. And it is square Neptune. If you don’t need to get to a particular place at a particular time (such as sightseeing, or checking out the changing leaves and wonderful nonsense of that sort), no problem! Allow extra time, bring a good book and a snack, a pound of patience, and a sense of humor. Double check reservations, make sure you have the correct time, make lists and check them twice. Mercury will be square Neptune, which is otherwise great weather for daydreaming and meditating and getting lost, all the way through the 22nd, which is a national holiday here in the United States. Now that should be interesting, having retrograde Mercury join everyone at the Thanksgiving table this year. And just in time for a Full Moon as well!
For next week’s horoscopes, click below: