By Amy Elliott
I stand for honesty, equality, kindness, compassion, treating people the way you want to be treated and helping those in need. To me, those are traditional values. — Ellen DeGeneres
If you’ve been watching the international news this past week, you saw the values DeGeneres speaks of in action as Irish voters chose to affirm the rights of same-sex couples to marry (becoming the first nation to do so by popular vote).
For some, this is surprising given how steeped in Catholicism Ireland is; you might be wondering if you can trust this victory in human rights to hold, given how embattled both sides of the issue have been — and given that Mercury is retrograde.
In fact, with Mercury in a square aspect to Neptune in Pisces (exact Friday), you might feel as if you are in a dream, wondering if you really just saw what you think you saw in Irish politics.
Yet there are times in our imperfect human dealings when Neptune’s higher octave of universal love and compassion manages to filter through and take substantive form. This looks like one of those moments, one that heralds a deeper cultural shift long in the works.
That said, Mercury and Neptune can both be a little tricksy, in their own way — especially in our mundane social dealings. It might be said that Mercury can represent the willful deceiver, and Neptune the willfully deceived. These two slippery fishes will come into focus early Wednesday, when retrograde Mercury conjoins Mars in Gemini (exact at 6:37 am EDT / 10:37 UTC).
This configuration says much about the power of words, and how people tend to react when they think (or discover) they’ve been lied to. How do you tend to react in that situation?
Particularly with Mars involved, there might be an impulse to react quickly; a sensation of being firmly in the right; an instinct that somehow everything suddenly makes sense. It may feel very real. However, Mercury is warning us to be patient and gather all the facts. Not everything is quite clear when one is looking through the Neptunian fog.
Since Mercury will make another square to Neptune when it is traveling in forward motion again, note that the facts being gathered could take a few weeks to coalesce into an eventual clarity. (For your reference, this week’s Mercury-Neptune square is the second of three. The third will be June 23; the first of the trio was on May 9.)
Whether you focus only on the aspect pattern at hand this week or on the longer arc, patience and fact gathering will stand you in good stead. As alluded to, this has to do with Mars in the mix.
There is much in the background of the Mercury-Mars conjunction that suggests you might want to think of constructive ways to channel that Martian energy. In particular, it may help to focus on your longer-term goals: that is, remembering and understanding what was driving you prior to Mercury entering shadow phase, and perhaps for a long time before that.
Closely related to this is the practice of conscious universal love in self-development; the understanding that the human race is truly one being; that by caring for others we also care for ourselves, and vice versa. By giving compassion a focus, we can precipitate our own healing.
If anger is the question, kindness is generally a very good answer. That includes kindness toward yourself, should your own anger get triggered — and some understanding of what it is trying to tell you.
– With additional writing by Amanda Painter
If you are looking for some in-depth, sign-by-sign guidance to this Mercury retrograde period, you may still order Eric’s Ultimate Mercury Retrograde Reading for the discounted pre-order price.
The Spring Reading is a 12-sign project, which takes an entirely different set of themes for each of the signs. You get all 12 Sun, Moon and rising sign readings with this — because if there’s one thing in astrology that calls for actually using astrology, it’s Mercury retrograde. So many of its annoyances are avoidable; there is so much creative potential to tap.