Photo: Jennifer Elizabeth Masters

Mercury is once again going retrograde starting off in Taurus and ending in Aries. This is when it appears to be going backwards from our geocentric (Earth-based) perspective. It officially begins on April 9th/10th and lasts until May 3rd/4th. Some of its well-known disruptive effects may have already started to be noticeable for you in the days leading up to its start, and in some cases even a few weeks before.

Mercury rules over communication and transmitting information or data as well as the mind and its ability to analyze and discern. Commuting, reading/writing, mechanical/moving parts, the internet and anything else related to communication technology such as phones/computers are all under the rulership of this planet.

When Mercury is normally moving forward, these functions and applications usually go more smoothly. However, during retrograde time we tend to experience some noticeable complications in those areas mentioned above. In many cases, we experience some delays, changes, and/or cancellations as a result. If you are doing your taxes this month, it would be good to be extra careful about making any mistakes with your numbers.

Some of the challenges we might face during Mercury retrograde actually give us an opportunity to see things in a different light. For example, if your plans change, you may decide to do something else and in that process you may have some sort of realization. Perhaps you bump into an old friend and have an insightful conversation, or you pick up an old book you were reading before and have an ‘Ah Ha’ moment. These are just some examples but it can manifest in a lot of different ways.

It is important to be flexible during this time and be open to what the universe is showing you. Traditionally, Mercury retrograde has been viewed as a transformational period. While in most cases it is about small adjustments that we need to make, in fewer cases it can help to facilitate more significant changes and even be profound.

Any new initiatives or projects that we have started in the weeks leading before the retrograde will go through a sorting out and reflective period, which will either help us to adapt, make changes, or drop it altogether. During the retrograde itself, it is a good time to revisit anything unfinished that you initiated beforehand and if you are starting something new it usually brings some sort of learning experience with it (whether or not it lasts). This period can also be great for reconnecting with friends and others from your past.

Mercury Retrograde Starts In Taurus, Then Goes Into Aries
Taurus is the sign of personal values, possessions, money, self-worth, food, nature, beauty, senses, and pleasures. Aries is the sign of independence, being active, leadership, and personal interests. Both of them are the first signs of the zodiac and as a result they are both ‘individual’ oriented, while signs later in the zodiac can be more relationship or collectively oriented in comparison to these two.

Mercury is always in close proximity to the Sun (by sign) and with the Sun currently in Aries and going into Taurus afterwards, there is a large emphasis on our personal interests and values at this time. Venus, the ruler of Taurus, also started its current retrograde in Aries, which is emphasizing some of the Aries/Taurus themes already mentioned.

Jupiter has been in Libra for a while and we will be having a Full Moon in Libra just after this retrograde starts, so there may be a need to find the middle ground between your personal interests and with those of your relationships/partnerships to grow together and/or expand what you are doing.

Roughly every 1.5-2 years, Mercury retrogrades change from one element to the the next. Since January 2016 it started in Earth signs and this year we start seeing the transition into Fire signs. In the Earth element, the shifts and adjustments have been helping us to become more grounded, practical, and improve the way we handle different aspects of the material world. In Fire signs, we are going to have experiences associated with adjustments in our passions, actions, explorations, and creative expression.

The Journey Of Mercury Retrograde and Significant Dates
April 9th/10th – Mercury begins its retrograde at 11:15pm Universal Time (GMT) on the 9th. I recommend not pushing too hard mentally during this time as Mercury is changing motion and you will need to get used to this shift in energy. It is a good idea to meditate to it to adapt, or alternatively you can do something creative, enjoyable, and anything that doesn’t require too much of your mind.

April 10th/11th – Full Moon in Libra (becomes noticeable up to 3-4 days prior). The theme here is our self-interests versus shared interests in our relationships, or perhaps the need to bring in some sort of balance. Be careful not to make any rash decisions or impulsive action without thinking it through and considering everything. It can be easy to do this with all the Aries/Uranus energy and Mercury retrograde, but Libra and Saturn involved this can help us to cooperate and/or collaborate which can have long term benefits. If applicable to you, try to to look at both sides to best determine how to proceed.

April 13th-16th – Sun conjunct Uranus and then the next day Venus goes stationary direct while conjunct Chiron and square Saturn. This can be a time of changes, breakthroughs, separations, innovations, or feelings of freedom depending on how it is affecting your natal chart. Following this period, we may start to get a better idea of where we want to go and how to proceed forward regarding our values, relationships, style, pleasures, finances, and perhaps even in creative expression. It is possible that some of our wounds or blocks around these themes come up, and for some this can feel like a significant evolutionary time as well.

April 16th-21st – Sun trine Saturn Retrograde, Sun and Mercury trine North Node, Sun conjunct Mercury. This is the most revelatory period of this retrograde. For some this can be a time to consider your long term goals and you may even be getting a lot accomplished, especially if you are revisiting something. Anything going in your life now helps you to see where things may be going for you, perhaps you make a good connection with someone, or learn something that can have long term significance for you. This can play out in other ways as well.

April 23rd/24th – Mercury trine Saturn Retrograde in Sagittarius. This can be good for using your mind for revisiting any work started previously. Perhaps, even getting your head around some of the thoughts and realizations that came up for you over the last week can be a theme. You may also receive new insights as well. It can be anything associated with your long term plans, adjusting the way areas of your life are structured, career goals, education, and in some cases travel.

April 27th/28th – Mercury conjunct Uranus. The energy of these two planets combined is the best for any sort of inventive thinking. Considering the retrograde, there is greater potential for flashes of insight, new creative or unconventional ideas, breaking through communication or mental barriers. In some cases in can manifest as rebellious or liberating thoughts or communication.

May 3rd/4th – Mercury finishes retrograde and goes stationary direct. Now and over the coming weeks is the time to start applying yourself in alignment with whatever insights, revelations, and lessons you have learned during this retrograde and perhaps even prior during Venus’ retrograde. If you are setting up anything in your life now, whatever you are doing may somehow play an important role for significant positive developments that come up for you in the Summer and Fall. Mercury’s next retrograde will be from August 12th until September 6th and generally it will be much more powerful than this current one when it comes to major shifts occurring. /Carmen Di Luccio

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