|The eroded terrain of Pinnacles National Park is silhouetted against the night sky, as the lights of King City, California glow in the distance. Photo by Joe Parks, via Wikimedia Commons.|
The month begins just as Venus goes direct (Jan 30) after her retrograde cycle in Capricorn. Venus hands the baton to Mercury who begins its retrograde on February 6. We are currently deep in an incessant retrograde process involving the three inner planets: Mercury, Venus and Mars.
Mercury retrograde occurs every three months, for three weeks. But Venus and Mars go retrograde the least of any planet, and thus correlate to more poignant and significant transitions. This month encapsulates the entirety of Mercury’s retrograde cycle in Pisces/Aquarius which I wrote about here.
All the usual advice applies when dealing with Mercury retrograde. This month will be a time to double check and reexamine a lot of things we’ve been dealing with up until this point. It’s best to rework those things that have already been established and launched previously, and to hold off on implementing entirely new endeavors.
That doesn’t mean that anything started now won’t work out, but that we need to pay extra attention to details and keep an eye out for loose ends that could potentially show up. Whatever we are involved with this month will certainly challenge our perception of reality, in many different ways. Mercury retrograde is a time to willingly look for weak spots in your world view, to see what new information you can uncover.
The retrograde archetype invites us to back up and take a good look at the progress we’ve made. There may be some changes that need to take place, or something we left out needs to be reconsidered. Then, we can’t forget the fact the Mercury retrograde is notorious for throwing a cosmic wrench in the gears, leading to all sorts of technical/mechanical hiccups. The best advice: be prepared for the unexpected and leave some room for possible schedule changes.
Mercury’s conjunction with Neptune before going retrograde symbolizes the realization or awareness of a vision or ideal. It’s backtrack through Aquarius is a chance to gain more objectivity and logical understanding—to see it from a different, altered or more sober vantage point.
Mercury turns stationary retrograde on Feb 6; this is the first significant event to occur this month. It’s best to pay more attention during the retrograde stations, as these are the most sensitive moments of the retrograde. Be extra clear in all your communications and double check to make sure that everything you have intended to convey is fully understood.
The Sun in Aquarius squares Saturn in Scorpio on Feb 11. Ideals may conflict uncomfortably with the reality of a situation. A positive sense of hope and newfound freedom may be greatly challenged by certain criticisms and high expectations. If you find yourself feeling discouraged; don’t give up that easily. Do what you can to make things right or to correct imperfections, then go about your business as usual. A lot can be learned from certain inadequacies that are revealed, but too much focus on imperfections can stunt growth and development.
Mercury retrograde dips back into Aquarius on Feb 12 to cover some territory previously overlooked. From a higher perch, things are a bit clearer. With an open mind, new insights can be gleaned and properly integrated for everyone’s benefit.
The Sun makes a trine to Mars and the Full Moon in Leo occurs on Feb 14. The Sun trine Mars creates a sense of mental fluidity and mutual cooperation between people we are involved with today. High energy and an enthusiasm to communicate truths and ideals with others are strongly pronounced. The Full Moon in Leo adds more fuel to the passion and excitement that may be lingering around. But with Saturn squaring the Full Moon axis, we must err on the side of caution.
Practical strategies and a sober mindset are required so that things don’t get too out of hand. With the proper work ethic, there may be a lot that can be accomplished. But we’ll all be feeling the heat and pressure to give the best performance possible. Mercury retrograde conjoining the Sun reminds us that practice and repetition are needed to meet high demands. Don’t feel too pressured to get it all right straight out the gate. It’s okay to make mistakes; think of it as a practice run and you’ll feel less stress.
Mercury retrograde conjoins the Sun on Feb 15, symbolizing the peak or midpoint of the retrograde cycle. Now that we’re knee deep in the retrograde process, we should be clear on what needs to be reworked. After a week or so of subtle deconstruction, we can now work toward building things back up, putting on the finishing touches.
Mercury retrograde trines Mars on Feb 16. Helpful insights or information may come to us through those we come into contact with today. While these insights may not mesh with our current perceptions or assumptions, they have the potential to greatly alter our knowledge base, adding a fresh and wider perspective. With the right attitude and cooperation, there could be a lot that can be successfully reworked and adjusted. Don’t try to go it alone. Integration will be the key.
The Sun enters Pisces on Feb 18, adding a numinous, mystical and spacey tone to the collective vibe. The Sun in Pisces is a time to connect more fully with a sense of connectivity and oneness with the world around us. Mercury retrograde squares Saturn in Scorpio on Feb 19 which could bring up some serious challenges that could trip us up if we’re not careful.
While an open mind is useful in dealing with Mercury retrograde, too much receptivity to others criticisms can leave us feeling depressed, useless or unworthy. Do your best to fix what’s wrong with the game plan, but don’t beat yourself up just because it’s not perfect. But it’s important to maintain a strong sense of integrity today, and to take responsibility for you’re the part you currently play. Playing the victim or the fool won’t work out too successfully, so stay sober and be prepared for critical evaluations.
The Sun in Pisces conjuncts Neptune on Feb 23. Look out for the potential to overtly idealize a situation today, but don’t close yourself off from insight that comes from unexpected or unseen sources either. While it’s important to remain skeptical of everything coming at you, there’s the potential to tap into something beyond the mundane channels. It may be a good time to dream, visualize or meditate. But if it sounds too good to be true; it might be time for some careful fact checking.
Venus sextiles Saturn on Feb 24, creating an opportunity to aesthetically enhance your surroundings or to bring something previously concealed into a more concrete formation. Whatever it is, there is a desire to keep things simple and to savor every bit, seeing it for what it is.
On Feb 25, Jupiter squares Uranus, setting off a t-square between Uranus, Pluto and Jupiter. There may be a lot of collective tension brewing in the atmosphere in addition to catalytic creative or scientific developments. The past, the future and the uncharted frontier must all find common ground here, and reconciling all directions will be the challenge of the day.
Mercury turns stationary direct on Feb 28 in synch with the New Moon in Pisces and the Sun trine Jupiter. After three weeks of backtracking, back stepping and readjustment, we may feel more empowered and confident to move forward in the right direction. We’re likely to have a more solid footing now at the end of the cycle, and the watery influence from this New Moon helps us to gain more emotional clarity. The Sun/Moon conjunction with Chiron creates a sense of destiny and an intense focus to actualize dreams, while the trine from Jupiter creates a sense of warmth and confident determination to go for the vision.
Feb 6- Mercury stationary retrograde
Feb 11- Sun square Saturn
Feb 12- Mercury retrograde back to Aquarius
Feb 14- Sun trine Mars; Full Moon @ 26 Leo
Feb 15- Sun conjunct Mercury
Feb 16- Mercury trine Mars
Feb 18- Sun enters Pisces
Feb 19- Mercury square Saturn
Feb 23- Sun conjunct Neptune
Feb 24- Venus sextile Saturn
Feb 25- Jupiter square Uranus
Feb 28- Mercury stationary direct; New Moon @ 10 Pisces; Sun trine Jupiter