17 June 2020

Mercury Retrograde In Cancer Begins: What You Need To Know

Mercury Retrograde Starts Tonight  & Ends July 12th

Photo by Keith Champaco on Unsplash

C.S. Sherin, 17 June 2020

Mercury Retrograde begins tonight in the sign of Cancer, and will end on July 12th. Mercury will go direct the next day, on July 13th, 2020.

By the way, if you have questions about the importance or validity of retrogrades, check out this post.

Mercury retrograde has symbolic meaning for us, from our viewpoint here on Earth. The symbolism and mythology connected with astrology can help us to gain insight into cycles, habits, patterns, and dynamics that emerge in the present moment. There is a lot more going on than just a Mercury retrograde at this time, but it can be helpful to look at one collective dynamic at a time, and synthesize as we go. Especially with a personal planet like Mercury, which symbolizes all things that have to do with thought, intellect, comprehension, and communication--we can find much useful information as we look closely at transits, like a retrograde.

There has been a certain amount of sensationalism linked with Mercury retrograde, and many point to the effects of confirmation bias as a result. While I do wish to diffuse unnecessary levels of concern, and I definitely want to discourage any temptation to allow astrology to dictate our lives...I also wish to say that there is some wisdom and useful perspective to be gained in paying attention to Mercury retrograde--in a calm, measured way--that includes lots of room for common sense and individual needs.

That being said, I have found that there are some things that are better avoided, if at all possible, during a Mercury retrograde:

  • Avoid committing to anything that is completely and totally new and out of the blue, especially--hiring, contracts, contractors, repairs, major purchases, jobs, etc.
Now, it is important to understand that if you were planning to do one of these things already, and it is nothing new, and nothing totally out of the blue, then it is absolutely fine to continue working on and developing whatever it is, making changes and what not.

And, of course, if it isn't possible to avoid completely new and out of the blue commitments, then be sure to do the following: expect setbacks, problems, unforeseen delays and issues, and the possibility of important facts coming to light about the person, job, work, contract after the retrograde ends. Prepare for setbacks and all of that. Hope for the best, give it a good go, and prepare for problems. That's it.

In general during Mercury retrogrades, it is best to approach it from a Zen perspective. Disconnect from impatience, rushing, and force of will. Let go of reactivity. Let go of feelings of entitlement. Find a center of peace and calm within. Whenever you begin to become challenged by something going wrong in some way, look at it as a bell of mindfulness that invites you to come back to center, that invites you to accept the dynamic and cooperate with it for the best possible outcome--even if it is unexpected or unwanted.

In addition, I would recommend preparing for and expecting delays, communication issues, misunderstandings, mistakes, and tech challenges. This is not to fulfill the expectation, but rather, like any important steps of preparedness, this proactive approach and state of mind grants us more peace...in any situation. If we leave a little early to avoid heavy traffic, if we back up our files on an external hard drive, if we take the time to listen to that quiet and kind little voice in our consciousness that keeps asking us to take care of something ahead of time--well, then we find that it won't matter if it is Mercury retrograde or not. This is because, we are listening to our intuition; we are taking steps to foresee possible issues--and we are then surfing the waves of the present moment with more ease. That's the idea.

Mercury retrogrades can also be a time when people suddenly give us news and information that they would never normally share, or that we would normally not hear about. It can also be a time when we connect with or learn about people from the past in some way. Overall, it is a time to reflect on and review information, communication, thoughts, and the ways we learn and relate to ourselves and others.

With this Mercury retrograde in the sign of Cancer, we may find ourselves needing to reflect on issues relating to the concepts and feelings around home, family, tradition, dependence vs. independence, and emotional safety and security. We may also find ourselves reviewing, and being pulled back into attitudes we have about the past...past relationships, past traditions, ancestors, and how we may cling to things that are no longer viable.

What have we outgrown? Do we feel too vulnerable to shed our protective shell and grow a newer, better one? Do we feel a need to retreat and protect ourselves as we grow a stronger shell that fits us better? The crab's shell is a symbol for the home we carry with us, but also for the necessary boundaries we must have in order to maintain emotional health and security. I invite you to sit gently with these symbols for this retrograde, and see what comes up for you. 

When our minds and modes of communication are confronted with such a maternal and emotional sign like Cancer, we very well may be facing some issues that we would rather intellectualize, but can't, because we are triggered, or because the very themes bring up deep emotions that rise up like ocean waves that cannot be avoided.

Some important things to understand about Cancer: Cancer is symbolized by the crab, scarab or sea turtle, and also by the yin/yang or 6/9 glyph. This has to do with how Cancer carries their home with them, as a part of their exoskeleton--it is their armor and their center of being. Within home is a representation of wholeness, the 6/9 dualism joining together holistically.

It can be difficult for Cancer to break with traditions due to sometimes experiencing too much nostalgia and sentimentality. It can also be difficult for Cancer to let go...to let go of the past--what happened in the past, and old relationships that have ended (long ago). Additionally, Cancer can also be: quite the complainer, pessimistic, moody, and can be dependent and clingy...or distant and aloof. The strengths of Cancer include: depth, good humor, creativity, intuition, compassion, quirkiness, nurturer, efficient, flexible, able to lead, and fun.

So, during this window of time, from tonight through July 12th, we may be finding ourselves reviewing, reflecting, and learning about what we need to let go of, how we need to better care for our emotional health and security, how we best balance our heads with our hearts; and where and how some traditions we have held dear may not be worthwhile or appropriate anymore. Look to your birth chart and current transits to see what house this is all happening in for you. The house will indicate the area of life where you will most notice the impact of this retrograde (as it relates to all things ruled by the Moon, Cancer, and the 4th house). 

Most likely, we will all be encountering some level of changing emotions and new information around keywords like home, mother/mothering, intuition, feelings, and family. We may want to tap into the Cancer qualities of flexibility, good humor, creativity, and intuitive wisdom that nurtures a healthy emotional life as we navigate the waters ahead.

C.S. Sherin (Chandra), Wild Clover Astrology 2020©. You are free to share this content via social media, unaltered and with the author, link and copyright intact. Any alterations or lack of credit is prohibited.

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