Welcome to the second week of February!
Still very much a hard time of the year for my California soul, even after living over 20 years in a place that actually has winter. My birthday is on February 16 and it took moving to Berlin to realize I was not born in the spring, but rather in the very heart of winter.
“Winter” in the Bay Area generally means around six to eight weeks of rain and chilly days where you might need to wear a cotton scarf or something that could be described in very loose terms as a “coat,” but this period was generally over by the time my birthday rolled around.
Oh February, how you’ve disappointed me!
Joking aside, the second week of February is a week that, as a writer, is very close to my heart because it’s calling us to make revisions on several levels when Mercury retrograde meets up with other planets.
The aspects I mention on the podcasts are:
Mercury retrograde conjunct the Sun on February 8 (at around 20 degrees of Aquarius, which echoes where the planet was on January 22)
Mercury retrograde square Mars on February 10 (at around 18 degrees of Aquarius, which echoes where the planet was on January 20)
Mercury retrograde conjunct Venus on February 13 (at around 15 degrees of Aquarius, which echoes where the planet was on January 18)
Mercury retrograde conjunct Jupiter on February 14 (at around 14 degrees of Aquarius, which echoes where the planet was on January 17/18)
I will be doing a separate podcast about next week’s new moon in Aquarius which I will publish here on Monday, February 8 – so stay tuned!
Tarot reading for Mercury retrograde
As I’ve mentioned before, I think astrology and tarot compliment each other in really great ways.
At its best, astrology is highly technical and analytical, a truly left-brain, abstract pursuit. The art of the system is synthesising the vast amounts of information into a coherent form. To do so effectively you need to be skilled at choosing the details that matter and bring them into a whole, otherwise you really run the risk of missing the forest for the trees.
But tarot? The language of tarot is poetry; the cards are storytellers who speak in images and symbols. It’s important to know the traditional meanings of the cards, but it’s equally important to completely throw them out the window at times.
In many ways, tarot is about seeing what is there each time you lay the cards and then describing it in simple terms – easier said than done. To do this, it’s important not to get stuck on “this card means that, and that card means this,” but you also don’t want to go completely of the rails.
Ok, the lecture is over for now, let’s move on to the readings.
Here are the cards I pulled for the question, “What should we learn from the Mercury retrograde cycle?”
The first card I pulled was the page of rods. Rods (also called wands) are the suit that correspond to the element of fire. The page in this card is looking to the future; he has new, exciting ideas and would like to push them through, perhaps even fight for them. Look how firmly he holds the rod, which can quickly be used as a weapon if the need arises. Like fire, rods want to move, and can become impatient when blocked.
But the page’s exuberant quest is indeed blocked by none other than the King of Swords. Could Saturn in Aquarius be creeping in here? Among its positive qualities, Saturn signifies maturity and authority. A king definitely has more experience and authority than a page and a sword (whose suit is ruled by the element of air) could easily chop that flimsy rod right in two. Since Mercury is in Aquarius, he is a “guest” in the home of Saturn bound to follow the planet’s rules.
Which way in the king looking? To the past, in retrograde motion if you will.
So what’s the message here? The spark of inspiration (fire) and new ideas are all well and good, but to truly grow into their own you need to review them mentally (air) and makes changes and adjustments as needed. A hot-headed page can only grow into a king once this is done.
This message, the wisdom and necessity of revision and revisiting in order to grow and progress, is carried out by the third card: the Earth-ruled size of pentacles, which stands for the value of hard work and discipline. Heed this call and spend this retrograde cycle to reflect on and test ideas that started in the middle of January.
I pulled cards for Mercury retrograde’s aspects to the planets as well, but this reading here already sums it up perfectly. What is being revised and with whom varies depending on the planet involved. Listen to the podcast if you’d like to know more.
As for me, the revision message is clear: I’m getting my butt in the chair to work on revising my novel. Wish me luck in this endeavour as I wish you luck in yours.