Mercury Retrograde began yesterday (5th March) and will go on till the 28th of this month. A funny meme on Insta said “Mercury is in Gatorade or some shit.” Laugh it off, if you will. But when astrology buffs hear these two words together, they shudder in their pyjamas and hurry to back up their docs and recheck their travel plans.
So, what exactly is Mercury Retrograde?
It’s basically science. And a bit of geography. You know Mercury as the second planet from the sun and, like Earth, revolves around it. Now imagine Earth and Mercury as two planes passing each other in the sky. Sometimes (3 times a year), Mercury speeds up. At that time, viewed from Earth, it appears to be travelling backwards even though it is not. This is the retrograde motion of Mercury.
Mercury wears many hats. It governs our modes of communication, intelligence, wit and humour. Vedic Astrology calls it the messenger of the gods. It’s also known as Budh – wisdom.
It is but natural that when Retrograde strikes, Mercury-ruled activities will go awry.
So, late for work again? Blame it on Mercury Retrograde! Can’t find that document that will save you some taxes? No, no! Don’t blame it on your carelessness. It’s Mercury Retrograde up to its usual mischief.
But the effects of Mercury Retrograde are long lasting so be aware of everything you say and do in this period.
Here are the 5 ways Mercury Retrograde could trip you up and make the Ides of March feel like a walk in the park:
- Techno crashes: Back up your computers and other devices and make sure your glitches are all solved before this transit begins. Laptops are known to crash and important data irretrievably lost during this period. Don’t say you were not warned.
- Relationship breakdowns: Something said in jest could turn your status from “Blissfully Duo” to “Sadly Single.” Think before you speak. Yes, it can happen so suddenly. But the flip side is if the bond was so tenuous it’s better off broken, right?
- Travel muddles: You could check and double-check your flight dates, room bookings and travel arrangements and still get whacked down because the airlines left behind your luggage. Mercury retrograde strikes again.
- Bad bargains: Avoid shopping for expensive items at this time. What looks like a bargain now could become a hair-tearing cry-fest when Mercury goes direct. Who wants to pursue uncaring customer care tele-executives day after day?
- Crazy-making contracts: Signing on the dotted line? Pause. Avoid it if you can. If not, double-check. Perhaps that perfect job is actually a stint in hell with a devilish boss. That awesome apartment you’re taking on lease, which seems too good to be true is actually that, with leaking walls you discover only when you shift in.
Mercury REtrograde invites us to REflect on the past – to REtreat from the hustle bustle of daily life and REassess all areas of our lives. Meditation is a big help in navigating this transit without tears and snafus.
But there are no absolutes. If something needs to be signed and you just cannot delay it any longer, go ahead and do it. Even if it turns out to be something you didn’t expect, put it down to the Mercury Retrograde experience and a lesson in self-evolution.
Track your feelings, emotions and activities in your journal every time there’s Mercury Retrograde and soon you’ll be able to ace it.
Sonia Rao is Editor in Chief at Thriive Art & Soul