by Boots Hart, CAP

Monday, May 13, 2013

Mercury in Gemini

A Mustard-Blue Sunset in Landers, California
(photo credit, Jessie Eastland aka Robert DeMeo, August 2012)

When Mercury enters Gemini on May 15th at 8:42 in the evening (UT/+0 time), it will signal that everything else in Gemini, all the qualities associated with any Gemini object (or attribute in your natal chart) is going to become ‘amplified.’ So the volume, even the sheer noise in life and in our heads is going to get turned up a notch.

At the same time, anything in the opposing sign of Sagittarius is going to confront us, or manifest as something confrontational which we may only have to think about…or which, as some do with oppositions, we’ll try to ‘push away’ or avoid.

Again, this applies in life, in the real-time world and in your personal world and mind, as a part of your ongoing mindset.

I could go on like this, pointing out that Pisces and Virgo are the squares to Mercury’s Gemini ingress and that Aquarius and Libra are the trines and that Scorpio and Capricorn are the inconjuncts.

And all that would be true. It’s also not unique. The idea which (in an archetypally Mercurial manner) I’m trying to get across is that an object which is in one sign sets off relationships to all other signs. Mercury is entering Gemini, yes. And it will be in Gemini until the end of May, when it will mush (or trip ever so gaily, depending) on into Cancer. And yes, Mercury in Gemini is a time for business and many new ideas and getting organized and thinking things through and making choices. All of that is true. But astrology isn’t about ‘existence in isolation’ any more than your heart rate or blood pressure exists as a thing isolated an apart from your body’s temperature or some infection you may have in your wee little finger.

So while we can start by thinking about how Mercury’s entering Gemini is likely to bring out Venus, Jupiter and Black Moon Lilith attributes because they’re all going to be in Gemini for the duration of Mercury’s transit, there’s also things like the days-ago solar eclipse which merit thinking through.

 Mercury as photographed by NASA's Mariner spacecraft

But first things first: Mercury, Venus, Jupiter and Black Moon Lilith being altogether in Gemini suggests that these weeks of May are a time to get things done and for moving towards (or at least working on how to move towards) important Venus-Jupiter goals. And yet, you may have to do this in spite of what others think (that would be the Black Moon Lilith effect) because you believe in them…OR this may be a time to think through why you’re having such a problem with life (and others) in a general sense, dealing with what you may or may not have failed to take into account about them or their direction, interests, mentality …whatever… in light of how you are or aren’t being received.

The ‘informational’ or ‘mental gearing’ points which we would most associate with this process will occur as Mercury conjuncts each of these various points – and I should add here that the Sun will be joining this Gemini party late on May 20th, so the last ten days of May are surely about as Gemini as they can be.

And that can be good…or it can be challenging, as indicated by the fact that there will be a Sagittarius lunar eclipse on May 25th.

But let’s not jump ahead (that would be too Mercurial even for me, a known “long-form” text type!). Mercury doesn’t actually ‘catch up’ (conjunct) Venus until May 24th, though we will start feeling the combined Gemini Mercury-Venus vibe as early as May 18th. If you think of this Mercury-Venus in Gemini combo as the ability to see possibilities, you’re probably on the right track.

With Venus having crossed the rather vital Aldebaran-Antares axis line on May 16th and Mercury crossing that same point on May 19th, these three days ask that we emphasize the Aldebaran concept of integrity while avoiding the wholesale instinct to proselytize or demand that others see things our way which Antares (a star known for dogmatic qualities) tends to evoke.

In case you missed the blogs on these two famously stellar entities, here are the links:

By the time Mercury and Venus perfect their transiting junction, they’re at 18 Gemini, an emotional degree which in airy Gemini tends to manifest as fervency, enthusiasm or excitement over some idea. That said, the enthusiasm or fascination evidenced at 18 Gemini is also thought to be problematic sometimes because it’s so focused on details and not willing enough to go along with the spirit of the moment, or the idea that life is not all about having life be what we want…but rather an experiencing of life so that we can come to an understanding of how to fit in, harmonize and contribute in a way which is meaningful to us, and others.

This is a time for learning – that we know because this Venus/Mercury conjunction is taking place within a degree of Rigel, the star all about being ‘at the foot of the teacher’ and thus embodying what we can learn, what we can teach, and yes – what we may need to learn about a subject, about ourselves, about others or about life itself before we can move on, or before we can achieve the success in whatever it is which seems so important to us at this time.

That discordancy, that gap between the longing or the ‘idea of the thing’ and the reality of whether it works or whether anyone will be willing to meet you even part way (never mind half way) is very Black Moon Lilith. Black Moon Lilith is that which others aren’t willing (or “ready”) to hear about or from us…and often enough what we don’t want to take into account about ‘them’ – which could be the big societal “them” or the relationship partner “them” or the boss or supervisor “them” or those running your country or (if you’re in power) your citizenry, which about now is probably not listening.

At least not with their tolerant and open ear.

Study for the painting 'Lady Lilith' done in 1866 by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

The underlying energetic of Lilith involves something far more potent: that part of ourselves often referred to as our 'shadow' which, in not accepting and working to understand we so often end up attracting - literally or qualitatively - from others. Typically referred to as a 'woman' because of this symbol's origination in ancient scriptures dating from a time when women were thought of as 'less than' (which is rather Lilith-like in itself, don't you think?) Lilith has everything to do with that part of our persona, generally the emotional persona, which we don't like dealing with and don't like anyone else evoking in us.

When they do, we blame them. But while their acts or actions which we find so provocative are certainly their, the reaction to that is ours. And it's that reaction which Lilith is all about: the darker side of our emotional nature which is reactive at some level or in whatever way which we find so difficult to deal with.

The metaphsyical lesson here is that life will continue to provoke us until we learn to deal not with life, but with our Self. To the degree that we don't, Lilith (in either form, as the Black Moon or as the asteroid Lilith) represents that part of us both that we reject and which we will be rejected for.

Not to put too fine a point on this, that there has also ended up being two forms of Lilith says a lot to how problematic this tendency is in human beings.

The asteroid form (which we are not talking about here) tends to be more about things we don't want to deal with in ourselves which only apply to what we don't want to admit to ourselves. The calculated form of Lilith - the Black Moon - has to do with the Moon's orbit around Earth and thus manifests with more of a 'relational' or me-and-my-world sort of quality.  
Black Moon Lilith sitting at 28 Gemini as all this is going on has the Black Moon in conjunction with another famously infamous fixed star, Betelgeuse. And since Betelgeuse either wants things to be easy or seeks to take the easy way out (or through the problem) while that may be our problem, we’re more than likely to think it’s everybody else’s problem.

Why? Because that’s the easy thing to do, of course!

(Yes, I know…how annoying!)

Besides all the above, I am coming to think that perhaps Betelgeuse, especially in the presence of a 'relational' or 'societal' symbol like Black Moon Lilith doesn't also represent those who have it easy...or those who think the easiest thing to do is "go with the flow" or join some 'prevailing idea.'

But then, Jupiter and Venus in Gemini as a chaser to a strong draught of Taurus solar eclipse does sort of encompass that idea. So as Mercury moves into Gemini, might we not hear more on both sides of this 'having it easy' coin?

Maybe the real answer is the difference between what comes easily to one person and not to another and how what is given to us by dint of fortune is an ease that may also blind us to some very real and very emotionally evocative part of life.  

With our having just passed through a vital solar eclipse which is so testing to our sense of ability and desire to persevere, it's likely that some of us will be tempted to just say ‘screw them’ (so to speak). Or even ‘I give up!’ now, which may come to a head as the emotional peak of the lunar eclipse rambles through. From when Mercury conjuncts Venus the gap between Mercury/Venus and Jupiter – the power of ‘blowing things up big’ (or expansion) only increases not just until the eclipse but beyond it, reaching a mental/psycho-social peak twice – once on May 26 (when Mercury conjuncts Jupiter) and again on May 29th, when Mercury conjuncts Black Moon Lilith.

As this happens, asteroid Atlantis joins the grouping as if to say if you’ll just let yourself understand and get used to how things work instead of how you WANT them to work, you can achieve everything you want to achieve…maybe even more.

But it’s not going to be easy for everybody to get there. Between the moment of the lunar eclipse (May 25th) and this Mercury-Black Moon conjunction the Moon will of course be moving on from its eclipse point (4 Sagittarius) through the balance of Sagittarius (testing our willingness to see new truths and act to improve things in the general-and-operational sense) …and then the Moon enters Capricorn.

Moon in Capricorn is always hasty. I don’t know if you’re into Lord of the Rings, but when I think Moon in Capricorn, I always hear a line from Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers where Treebeard the Ent chides one of the Hobbits (Merry) for being so hasty.

Treebeard and the Hobbits by TTThom (2007)

The Moon will enter Capricorn on May 26th at 9:30 in the evening UT/+0 time. And during the next two days, while it transits Capricorn, we will have less of a tendency to ‘hold on’ and hesitate and more of that urge to get it done.

This process will become particularly strong as the Moon conjuncts Pluto, a process which initiates late on May 26th (UT/+0 time), which ‘perfects’ or comes to its peak early in the morning on May 27th (UT/+0 time) and which will fade back into a more ‘normal’ Moon-in-Capricorn busy pace by 6-7 pm on the 27th.

For some of us, that will be the energy which gets us past a sticking point. For some of us, this period will mark a time of revelation. For all of us, considering that the height of this Pluto/Moon takes place in opposition to Vesta (the ‘cost’ of keeping our commitments, whether to others or ourselves) and that the ‘exit’ from Pluto-Moon’s intensity occurs in opposition to Ceres/Charybdis, our questions are more likely to be ‘how to do that?’ rather than the total denial of what needs doing.

And that’s good, as that is part of the unfolding process of the solar eclipse – which though it is an event which takes place at a particular time is also, and more importantly on the astrological front, a long-term transit.

We are just beginning to grow into and through the energetics of this May’s solar eclipse. We’re about seven months into incorporating shifts denoted by last November’s solar eclipse into our lives. We’re about a year into the process of grasping the shift of mental emphasis spoken to by the 0 Gemini solar eclipse of May 2011.

Solar eclipses ‘evolve’ over a period of three years. Often we don’t really understand what they’re about until almost the whole of that period has passed us by. Sure, we think we know what they’re about…we get a ‘message’ and we make a shift. But it’s what that leads us to knowing or doing or understanding which is the real and shining jewel of any eclipse. So right now we’re really just finding out – or coming to find out – what the solar eclipse of July 2010 at 19 Cancer was all about.

This year’s eclipse builds from that place. And of course each eclipse in its turn is more or less important or vital in an active sense in our lives depending on how the position of the eclipse aspects our chart. For instance, that eclipse in my world hit my personal natal Uranus in the 4th house. The standard ‘breaking down’ period which preceded it was a time of restlessness and turmoil in my life which caused me to burst forth on my Uranian own, taking on the development of this blog, which first appeared in May of 2010, a little less than eight weeks prior to the solar eclipse.

And that’s what we always say: when you get inside that eight weeks prior to an eclipse, you begin to change. Now, with the current eclipse, I’m building on that which I’ve come to understand through three years of blogging (and for a time, not blogging). And as we’ve noted in the eclipse post, there is something to be said for this May’s eclipse (at 19 Taurus) sextiling the (19 Cancer) eclipse which is just concluding it’s work.

All that comes back to these weeks of Mercury in Gemini leading directly out of the Taurus solar eclipse as a time when though we aren’t comfortable with everything we need to think through, deal with, try to understand or figure out how to do, we still need to do it. Gemini and Taurus are signs right next to each other, so they’re of differing ‘modalities’ and element. Gemini’s mode of operation is to try and to see what happens – hence the idea so many people have of Gemini as the ‘try this, try that’ sign, which really only works if you stay on course with a single goal. Gemini is not about spreading ourselves too thin. It’s not about giving ourselves excuses for not getting anything done. Gemini is about figuring out how to get to where you want to go. And it’s opposition to Sagittarius warns us that if we focus on the results too early, or if we go out into the big world with our big ideas before they’re properly assembled, we’re likely to find some ‘back to the drawing board’ glitches. Or at least some ‘I need to tweak this’ moments.

Taurus, like its fixed sign compatriots (Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius) wants to get things right. In fact, these are signs which would tend not to want to try unless they know they have it right…even though you have to risk being wrong to confirm ‘rightness,’ as it were.

Both of these signs are part of the zodiac’s first quadruplicity – the first four signs. Aires (fire), Taurus (earth), Gemini (air), Cancer (water) describe the basic life learning processes which go on through life no matter how old we get. Wherever you see these signs in your chart, whenever planets or other objects are in transit through these signs, we know that area of life is in for some development. It’s time to learn, the universe says.

The solar eclipse in Taurus is a ‘destabilizing’ energy in our security and satisfaction arena. Humans being humans, we don’t like changing the comfy status quo too much, so every 19 years or so (the eclipse cycle) Mother Nature shakes us awake with primal sorts of shifts which force us to grow and adapt. We get forced to let go of that which is no longer useful, no matter how much we love it.

No matter how much we love them.

The universe is neither kind nor unkind – it simply is. We project all sorts of priorities on existence which existence simply – and quite obviously – doesn’t uphold. Our loves, our prejudices, what is important to us as a human being, as a sentient creature, is evidently not what decides how the universe is run. Or how it unfolds. When we get “too” secure we seem to run a risk of thinking of ourselves as inviolable. That’s a form of ‘resistance to change’ which life will inevitably test, as the walls we put up – like all else – are merely formats of formulated energy. And for every action, there is an opposite and equal reaction. Our attempts to control merely prompt the universal mechanism to meet our power with equal or greater power.

After all, the universe will out. The whole is mightier than the part - which may be a secret in itself to why anything which separates us from each other, whether that's selfishness, discrimination, elitism...why the simple act of accepting is the ultimate and hardest zodiacal act to achieve and the hallmark of the emotional wisdom which is the challenge and glory of Pisces.

If you think this through – and Mercury in Gemini is a perfect time to do so – the success of Gandhi’s non-resistance and the logic of the peaceful and accepting ways spoken of in Buddhism become clearer.

And once you get there, you realize that all the force and violence is at some level our desire for some lesson.

Which says…what about us?


  1. And here I thought we were going to get some dull chat about Mercury in Gemini... you're always amazing! Thanks.

    1. A DULL chat about Mercury in Gemini? Tedious, maybe. Longwinded? Possibly. (Yes, possibly.) Nonsensical? That could be too...and it might be fun! But dull? Would Mercury stand for such a thing in it's home sign? E-gads!

      All laughter and hop-scotching aside, thanks for the compliment - and for taking your time to log in and let me know you're enjoying. Thank you!