The Astrology Blog – w/b 16 June 2014
All times stated are in BST.
I think it’s safe to say that regular readers or regular followers of astrology will know that Mercury is currently retrograde. Planets don’t literally go backwards of course but the astronomy of this phenomenon is all to do with the apparent direction of a planet as seen through the line of vision from Earth. As noted last week the textbook definition of this event – that happens roughly three times a year for three weeks at a time – is “problems with transport and communication”. My inbox abounds with stories, such as having broadband installed at home only to find that it doesn’t work and that the cost for “fixing” it falls to the client… being charged for calls never made… a medical diagnosis connected to the mouth that turns out to be a rare condition for which there is no real treatment… cars being off the road, and so on. Here we’ve been waiting all week for a delivery from a truck coming from the UK only to learn last night that it broke down in Belgium.
All of these stories illustrate that retrograde Mercury issues are often those that are not of our own making. The usual caution applies until he turns direct again, such as buying yourself time for major decisions or being vigilant about your security and possessions, but there’s a limit to how much we can actually predict or anticipate his havoc loving antics. Nearly always there is a waiting game involved or a sense of “back to the drawing board”. This theme is especially strong this week as Mercury turned retrograde on 7 June in the early degrees of Cancer, but tomorrow reverses back into Gemini (11.06). This is a plus point because this is one of Mercury’s own signs and it feels promising for coming up with answers or reworked agreements. Be willing to thrash out details. Gemini is the sign of the Twins so “double” checking, plan B or looking at other options, or entering into partnership personally or in business are all part of the picture.
Also roughly halfway through every retrograde period Mercury meets up with the Sun. So this week we have Sun conjunct Mercury on Thursday (23.51). From a craft point of view we are now in the realm of combust and cazimi planets. What does that mean?
If another planet is conjunct the Sun to within seven and a half degrees then that other planet is said to be combust. This means that it is weakened by its closeness to the Sun, whose powerful rays can burn and overwhelm. However, if a planet conjuncts the Sun to within 17 minutes (ie, just over quarter of a degree) it is then said to be cazimi. In this position the other planet is said to be in the heart of the Sun and is extremely powerful, drawing upon the solar strength and energy rather than being destroyed by it.
In real terms, then, pay close attention to information or events unfolding midweek as there is a good chance that you will find yourself at “the heart of the matter” and will then know how to proceed. Matters that need further work or time will probably not reach true resolution until Mercury starts turning around again at the end of the month but you should get the sense of being on the right track.
There is also a feel good factor this week in the shape of Venus sextile (harmonious aspect) Jupiter on Wednesday at 10.17. These two planets are known as the Benefics – they are good for us – and they rule the sweet and positive things of life. In a nutshell Venus is love/pleasure and Jupiter is opportunity/good fortune. They are especially strong at the moment as Venus is in her own sign of Taurus and Jupiter is in Cancer, his sign of exaltation. In the run up to this aspect becoming exact say yes to invites, make holiday plans, be generous, enjoy your girlfriends and family, and generally make the most of any opportunity to enjoy the sweet things of life. Single? Anyone you meet this week could be a gift.
Finally we mark the Summer Solstice this coming weekend as the Sun enters Cancer on Saturday at 11.52. The Solstice, also called ‘Litha’, is the moment when the Sun appears to stand still as we mark the transition from the days getting longer, back to the days getting shorter. In astrology the Sun symbolizes the life force, consciousness and vitality, so what better time than the longest day of the year to value and honour your health, happiness and the gift of life itself.