Francois Rude - Mercury
Have you been feeling scattered? Too busy to bear? Have things and people been appearing from out of left field and disappearing into nothingness without rhyme or reason?
Well, I hope you enjoyed it, because that was Mercury in Sagittarius! And as of December 1 at 12 minutes past midnight (UT/+0), Mercury abandons fiery Sagittarius for earthy Capricorn, ushering in a couple of cooling weeks of focus, clear cut needs and getting things done.
But only a couple of weeks, mind you - Mercury is going retrograde come December 10th. And considering that, we are all on notice that as the calendar page turns, Mercury is going into 'slow-down' mode.
That makes for an odd combination. Mercury moving from fast-paced (even hasty) Sagittarian mode into the cool, calm (sometimes even icy) and collected 'what's the fact here?' Capricorn style of operating is in itself one heck of a deceleration. It's not precisely a matter of pace...it's one of style and perspective.
Sagittarius is unbounded. Sagittarius sees few limits except for those its sees as mandatory (i.e., necessary even when annoying) guidelines. Sagittarius embodies the exploring vibe. The experimental vibe. Sometimes the over-the-limit vibe.
(Just what we need right before the holidays, right? Not!)
Against this, Capricorn is all about structure. Capricorn is the very manifestation of accomplishment. Under Capricorn there is less allowance for experimentation and a greater need/demand that what gets done produces concrete (earthy, earthly and quality) results.
In the natural round of the zodiac, both signs are worldly and public; they're about being in and of the world. But they're in different quadrants: Sagittarius is on the right side of the horoscope wheel and therefore about responding to what happens. Capricorn is on the left side of the wheel and thus endemically about pro-active choices and making things happen.
Holding that aside for a moment - and though it seems seems a little counter-intuitive - in the week prior to Mercury retrograde, typically things feel 'urgent.' It's as though we're reluctant or unable to deal with the very idea that matters are about to shift from situational (direct motion) to internal and contemplative (retrograde motion). So don't be surprised to be feeling like you just HAVE TO get things done. Or if others keep spouting such at you.
For science fans, a moment on 'is this reasonable?' Answer: yes. (I know...did you think I would say no?) But the concept is pretty plain when we think (you, know, employ the Mercury component?) on what retrogrades actually are.
Pure and simple, retrogrades of any planet are about a period of time when that planet is on the other side of the Sun from Earth. Thinking of it as thus being 'out of sight,' it's not a huge, giant leap to say precepts associated with such a planet (or whatever waves of geomagnetism or spatial distortion said planet generates by existing and moving through space)...that the direct line of effects which are generated (and symbolized) by that planet are for the period of retrograde, 'interrupted.'
There's no direct (external) line. But the planet still exists. It's precepts are still aspects of our life. So where do we find them? On the inside.
Got it? Good!
And oh (by the way) this also explains why the Sun and Moon never go retrograde. The Moon is never going to be on the 'other' side of the Sun from Earth...and the Sun can't get behind itself. Might happen in some other universe...but not this one!
So...in moving into Capricorn, Mercury is still in a public/visible area of the zodiac, but it has left its receptive-reactive-responsive mode and moved into a means of expression which is more prone towards initiation. And thus, so follows our patters of thought, communication and daily operation.
Sagittarius being part of the interactive zodiac quadrant and Capricorn being part of the worldly zodiac quadrant puts yet another wrinkle on all issues. Where in the past few months a lot of discussions have been about what things (people, rules, situations) do for/to me (you, us, everyone)....NOW the order of mentality is going be more about levels of worldly/public functionality and how the need is to change that in order to create effective change
The difference is greatly scope. The third quadrant is more local than the 4th quadrant: think 'group' versus 'globals.'
Into all of which comes that retrograde thing. Whether people are into astrology or not, you may well have noticed a level of distraction going around during the latter weeks of November. People were into getting things 'sorted out' while Mercury was in Sagittarius but now, with Mercury moving into Capricorn, it's going to be a 'what is all of this about REALLY...?' sort of thing.
Mercury in Capricorn doesn't want to hear the talk. Mercury in Capricorn is not even about being happy with the walk. Mercury in Capricorn seeks results. And not just any results, but results which actually work.
Thus we come to the rub (or at least one of them) as Mercury in Capricorn tends to go very distinctly in one of two ways: maximally traditional...brand new and made functional with an eye to quality. The impulse is the same - it comes from the Capricorn desire for 'whatever' to last a really, really, really long time. Those who fight for tradition are wanting to extend what has lasted while those who are looking for today's quality thing want it to last going forward.
Optimally, something lasts the test of time and is in essence, eternal. Unfortunately, that isn't - and can't always be the case. And in this struggle to do the right thing versus the quality thing versus the thing which is going to last and support/mesh with what else (and who else!) we deal with in life - that's where the 'Saturn behind the Capricorn' meets.
From Earth, the planet farthest away that we can see is Saturn. It thus defines the edge and end and extent of our efforts, our reach, and our aspirations. Thus it is our capacity and our goals...and all the reaching, straining, trying, working, investing in ourselves or knowledge or whatever else we have to do to get where we want to go. It's the precept that for what you earn, so you are rewarded. And how if you don't earn (try, structure, mind your time, deal with responsibilities) you end up limited precisely to the degree you haven't tried, earned, minded the rules, been responsible with your time, structured your efforts...and so on.
Capricorn times often center on structure (structuring) and a deep, inherent sense of time itself. As such, Mercury in Capricorn is a time which can fill us with a sense of what we can do...or fears of having to do without. Capricorn entities (government, judicial justice, commerce) often aim to make us think in terms of these ideas in order to get us to take on responsibility.
And yes, they also sometimes threaten us with everything from what will happen if we "don't" do something - a tactic used as often by commercial sectors who want us to think we absolutely "need" things to governments who threaten citizens with what might happen if they dare think a different way or don't support some government effort, etc.
Because Mercury is already beginning to slow down as it enters Capricorn, the sense of urgency and need to get things done is intense. With Mercury in conjunction with North Node going in, there's an added and really marked sense of 'it's expected' or 'this is something I need to get done' which may leave you struggling against a sense of sluggishness which is hard to define and virtually impossible to escape.
This Mercury/North Node conjunction will be in effect until December 19th, describing the heart of 2010's 'holiday season' as one which suggests that pacing activities and being sensible all along the line is the very best way to go.
Of course...after December 19th, then we get into the 'hot zone' of this season's eclipses. But first things first! That's a Capricorn mantra and thus a good mindset to be mindful of.
Good Mercurial times to us all!