August 21, 2023
When we refer to Mercury going "retrograde," we are talking about the apparent phenomenon in which the planet Mercury appears to move backward in its orbit from our vantage point here on Earth. But in reality, Mercury doesn't actually reverse its orbit; it's the result of the varying speeds between Earth and Mercury as they orbit the Sun, and how we perceive it.
Astrologically, Mercury is associated with the god Mercury, which means this planet aligns with the themes of communication, technology, travel, and decision-making (among others). When Mercury is in its backwards, or retrograde, motion the above is often associated with becoming more challenging and difficult. One might experience disruptions, misunderstandings, delays, and glitches in regards to these themes. While many of us have solid experiences that back up these theories, it's essential to note that it's always a good idea to approach them with a healthy dose of critical thinking and to not let this time overly dictate any serious decisions or expectations.
When Mercury goes retrograde in a particular zodiac sign, it's important to consider the traits and characteristics of that sign and how they interact with Mercury's symbolism and influence. The Virgo archetype is particularly associated with attention to detail, analysis, practicality, and organization. Its native planet is (conveniently) Mercury, the planet of communication, travel, and intellect. When Mercury goes retrograde in its home sign of Virgo, expect the way the essences of both Virgo and Mercury appear in your life to be extra strong or challenging.
Basically, it's Mercury Retrograde at its finest.
During this period, there could be a heightened focus on reevaluating and refining the way you communicate and process information. Or, it could be a time to review and revise plans, projects, and routines. Additionally, since Virgo is known for its attention to detail, Mercury retrograde in Virgo might emphasize the need to be especially meticulous in communication, work, and daily tasks. What's more is that you might make these reflections or realizations through a miscommunication, delay or cancellation of important plans or travel, or the breakdown of a system, appliance, or piece of equipment.
Fear not! One way we always combat Mercury Retrograde is to hold space for grounding and centering practices, clearing and balancing routines or rituals, and good 'ol fashioned positive thinking. Going with the flow and facing challenges with flexibility and understanding can often result in being in a more satisfied head space after the fact, rather than being rigid or stubborn because of less than ideal outcomes.
To simplify and slow down during this backwards- af- Virgo- time is to focus on the positive aspects of Virgo: double check details before taking a plunge (hello, Hermit card), or make time for mental health breaks and energy clearing. Another way to explore this retrograde to focus on Virgo's 6:6 relationship with its astrological axis partner, Pisces. In a 6:6 relationship, one sign will often brighten the positive aspects of the other's positive characteristics, while taming the negative through support and perspective shifts. To read more about Sun Sign patterns and relationships, read our blog here, Read more about our Virgo friends here, and read more about Mercury retrograde here.
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