By Hui Ng
Are you ready for another round of miscommunication and technical glitches coming up soon? Mercury, the quicksilver trickster planet of Communication, turns retrograde on 26 May 2008 in the sign of Gemini and is ready to cause more havoc to the communication realm. Astrologically speaking, planets don't suddenly seem to switch gears and turn backwards from Earth's perspective. They remain in a stationary state of movement for about two weeks prior to turning retrograde. Some planets are prone to turning retrograde at a high frequency and Mercury tops the list - it goes retrograde about three times a year, spending about three weeks in each retrograde period.
Mercury also remains stationary for about two weeks prior to turning retrograde and we are currently in what is astrologically referred to as the 'shadow period' of a retrograde period (11 - 25 May 2008). Since Retrograde periods are all about the planetary energies reversing gears, that's what turns inside out as well - our thought processes and intellectual capabilities become hindered to an extent as well. In Greek mythology, Mercury has been traditionally linked to Hermes, the Messenger of the Gods, who connects people by bringing news and relaying messages. In modern terms, the planet Mercury related primarily to communication, studies/learning and even short-distance travel.
Gemini is the third sign of the Zodiac belonging to the Air element and traditionally rules the fingers. As a mutable Air sign, Gemini is the symbol of the Twins and is a versatile, flexible, adaptable sign that functions primarily through the mental/intellectual realm. People who have prominent Gemini influence in them need others to feed off that abundance of mental energy in them. After all, Gemini is an 'thinker' sign of the highest order that thrives in the social realm and bases its self-esteem primarily on harmonious interpersonal relations.
Putting these pieces of information together, what occurs when Mercury turns retrograde in Gemini (at 21 degrees) on 26 May? First and foremost, expect major hiccups when it comes to communication of every type one can possibly think of - interpersonal, social, technical and even political! Mercury also rules over electrical gadgets like computers, laptops, palmtops so do remember to back up your hard drives before Mercury turns retrograde. Already, some folks are feelings the effects as Mercury Retrograde approaches ever closer. Computer and technical glitches seem to be the norm in recent days and breakdown in other types of communication seem to be the order of the day as well. On the bright side, this lays the groundwork and foundation for all of us to be psychologically prepared when mercury Retrograde hits us at force impact in a few days' time.
So what are the things to look out for in order to ensure a smoother ride through the sea of confusion that lies ahead of us? First, focus on the REs - re-think, re-evaluate, re-confirm, re-peat...re-everything! Don't make hasty decisions and don't jump to conclusions either. You're likely to regret or change your mind about them later. Secondly, do not schedule important events during the retrograde period that has to do with communication, such as signing new deals, job contracts, mortgages for down payments etc. You're likely to change your mind about them at a later date. Expect delays of all types, transportation, so remember to give allowance before you leave home to arrive to your destination. Instead of initiating or starting new projects, take time out to complete unfinished ones.
On a broader social level, this period is likely to usher in a period of miscommunication, especially since it coincides with the Jupiter Retrograde in Capricorn period. There is a high possibility of muddled or contradictory information from governmental organizations, political parties and social institutions, adding to the level of confusion that is already clouding everyone's thought processes. The emergence of lies and deceit are generally more rampant so it would be wise not to take everything said at face value.
Most importantly on an individual level, this Mercury Retrograde period ushers in a period of self-renewal for us, even if on the intellectual/mental level. Not only are we are encouraged to think twice about what we say, we are also urged to clean out the mental garbage that's been clogging our minds. It's an excellent time to revisit the past memories and come to terms with them (if one hasn't already done so) and it is also a good time to reconnect with people from the past - lovers and friends alike. All in all, this period heightens our sense of self-awareness and quickens the pace of self-healing so that we can clear out more space in our lives. Take the necessary time-out to recharge yourself mentally, emotionally and spiritually, so that you gain more inner strength and resilience to face what's to come when Mercury once again turns direct in Gemini (12 degrees) on 19 June 2008.
For more information on Mercury Retrograde & Astrology in general, log onto http://www.all-about-astrology.com