Full Moon in Gemini, Mercury Retrograde, and the P...

Full Moon in Gemini, Mercury Retrograde, and the Path of Saturn

A dream of sea at night. Sky swirled, clouded. The storm has formed in the distance, cartographers and lookouts are left powerless. The ship crests a sudden wave, sea creatures flash electric under the hull. The dreamer senses the pull of the Full Moon.

Our world moves cyclically, emptying and filling itself again with waters both earthly and celestial. This week we have been working our way to another Full Moon, now in Gemini. Gemini has a reputation for flightiness, indecision, even self-centeredness. In Greco-Roman mythology, symbolized by the twins, Castor and Pollux, Gemini is known as a sign of opposing forces. In this age of over stimulation and over-saturation, I believe the most distractible qualities in Gemini are given extra outlets—there are so many things to consider, encounter, explore, be overwhelmed by. Ruled by Mercury, god of communication, wits, the intellect, writing, and language, Gemini’s key phrase is “I Think.” In terms of the body, Gemini rules the nervous system, the hands, the shoulders, and the lungs—things that come in pairs. Though it is true that Gemini can easily be driven to distraction, what people don’t understand is that the Gemini energy of oppositional forces rules everything in our world, we all fall under its spell. There is a beauty to Gemini in their restlessness, their obtuse perfectionism, their nagging feeling that there is more to see and learn and do than what’s in front of them. Gemini changes her mind, yes, but we can admire her for that.

In the Full Moon cycle, Gemini energies are felt, full on. We are simultaneously torn between the light and the dark. The world seems carnivalesque, topsy-turvy, by turns joyous and nightmarish. We must keep in mind that Gemini is the sign of information, learning, communication. We are in the process of learning important facts about the world around us and how we fit into it. This is an extension of the theme of Jupiter’s recent move into Scorpio, a sign that leaves no stone unturned in search of truth. But rather than be frenzied by this stressful time, we can use the energy to push us forward. Full Moon in Gemini brings intellectual power and flashes of creativity. Finding ways to ground and center yourself are more important than ever, right now.

Perhaps, for now, it is easier said than done. Yesterday, Mercury stationed retrograde at 29 degrees in Sagittarius, marking its last retrograde period for 2017. As Mercury is the sign that rules Gemini, the sign of our current Full Moon, we find themes of Mercury challenged in retrograde, just as the Moon is trying to let it bloom. In addition to this, Mercury retrograde sits conjunct Saturn, also in Sagittarius at 28 degrees. Saturn is the planet of pressure, rules, constraints, power. It weighs down the ideas of airy Mercury. We are trying to grow a little winter garden but find it beset with snails. Unexpected complications arise. Light and dark.

Mercury retrograde is a famous astrological transit that happens three to four times a year, when Mercury appears to move backwards rather than forwards. This symbolically communicates a retrogressive energy for us earthbound creatures. As the planet of communication, Mercury retrograde affects the ways in which we relate to one another, causing confusion, miscommunication, accidentally sent emails or texts. It can ruin your travel plans, as it can have negative effects on electronics and other machines that now control all aspects of human transportation. So yes this all is uncomfortable and poses difficulties for those of us just trying to live our lives—goddess knows things are stressful enough these days. But on the other hand, there is some good that we can salvage from the shipwreck that Mercury retrograde can inspire.

As the planet of language and learning goes retrograde, this is a perfect time to collect yourself and reflect on the progress of the past few months. Mercury was last retrograde August 12-September 5th. Where were you then? What have you accomplished between September 5th and December 3rd? It is likely that you have achieved more than you realize. Note it down for yourself, appraise it, consider where you went right and where there is room for improvement. We cannot ceaselessly hurl ourselves into the ether for the sake of progress. In fact, it is absolutely ridiculous (to this occultist, at least) to live life in such a way that we don’t look back over our shoulders every so often. And look back with love. We can only grow through pain, failure, accidental discoveries, boundaries broken and then reevaluated. Appraise the scene of your life during Mercury retrograde so that you can move forward with confidence and strength when it goes direct again on December 22nd. In these troubling times, we must stop to construct our own armor, steep our own medicines, refill our baskets so that we have enough provisions to continue the journey. Use Mercury retrograde as a period of grace and kindness toward yourself. If and when things go awry, ask yourself what skills you have to deal with the challenge. You are sure to have the right weapon in your arsenal.

My darlings, we speak often of cyclical change, of capture and release, and we have one more huge shift to consider before the year ends and the new one begins. On December 19th, Saturn leaves Sagittarius and enters Capricorn. Saturn has been in the sign of Sagittarius since December 23rd, 2014. While transits amongst the inner planets (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars) impact individual energies, the transits of the outer planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto) indicate changes on a more mass scale. With Saturn moving into Capricorn, the weeks ahead will feel more chaotic than usual, as the planet makes its way into its next full energetic expression. Saturn in Capricorn, I believe, should seek to impose order on the steady stream of abuse and excess we have seen erupt everywhere lately. Saturn is a planet that puts pressure on us to perform. It highlights our weakness to force us to confront them. It dislikes the trivial, striving for purity, functionality, efficiency. The natural ruler of Capricorn, Saturn will be at ease in this transit, encouraging us to live our truths, to engage with our peers in a way that demands that we break the curses of our social evils and embrace a rational sense of futurity.

On a personal level, we will be called to work that we find honest and meaningful. Capricorn and Saturn bring with them themes around our careers and their development, as well as our personal success. We will feel called to work in a way that we are meaningfully contributing to society as a whole, as well as fulfilling our individual needs. We will be rewarded for honesty, and those who are dishonest will feel the repercussions. Break with materiality, with greed, with closed-mindedness. In another dream, someone plays the flute on a far off hillside. Follow that sound, we are on the trail of our utopia, one that we can only reach by demanding an aggressive re-evaluation of our values as a society. I believe we have the strength to do so.



Full Moon Exhortations

Aries + Aries Rising

Talking, reading, rambling, breathing, these are all things close to your heart. But what if your lung is pierced in combat? You were always one for war. Find peace in the fact that your mind matters. Nourish it; it is your personal Avalon.

Taurus + Taurus Rising

For you, there has been a war of values. Have you asked yourself what truly matters? Have you denied yourself answers? What do you dream of? Though you drape yourself in velvet, there is more to life than what you touch. Consider the weight of choice.

Gemini + Gemini Rising 

A celebration of the self is in order, dear one. In moments of nervousness, consider yourself sacred, for you are the one who brings both light and darkness, who in their indecision maintains a mutable balance. Love yourself.

Cancer + Cancer Rising

It is time to venture inside your shell. Bring some flowers with you, some candles, and your favorite record. Take a vow of silence. You are the one with the most important advice for yourself. Abandon anxiety. Your intuition is a gold thread. Pluck it to hear the sound.

Leo + Leo Rising 

It is undeniable that you are adored, but do you put these connections to use? Social growth comes from the strength of the community. Band together with your friends for bravery, for hope. Harmonize your intentions, and set out for the forest.

Virgo + Virgo Rising

All those plans you made about your future are gathering dust in a drawer. Take out the maps you drew for yourself and examine them. Do not forget that you are striving for and destined for greatness.

Libra + Libra Rising

Visit the church of your higher self and light a candle. Wear a cape and meditate on a saint or an ancestor. When you hear the break of day, write down what comes to you. You know so much.

Scorpio + Scorpio Rising

Oceans breathe behind your skin. How do you engage this power? You are phoenix, scorpion, and eagle in one. You are also snake. Merge body and consciousness with a lover. Consider the volcano.

Sagittarius + Sagittarius Rising 

Galloping over hill and dale, trusty bow aloft, find ways to summon allies from blowing on your horn. When you all are gathered, dwell in the richness of connectivity. People you know want to support you; don’t turn them away.

Capricorn + Capricorn Rising 

Tend to the complex space of your body. You seek out the nighttime but possess the Sun. Our blood is warm and yours needs rich broth as much as anyone else. Put down your workman’s tools, and nurture your materiality.

Aquarius + Aquarius Rising 

Gather the supplies you dream of when you imagine your most nuanced creative work and set about making the art you want to see. You have the power to create right now. Believe in nature, believe in dreams, believe in every cell in your body. You are ready.

Pisces + Pisces Rising 

Though you float on imaginary seas more often than most of us, you do have a loving and strong foundation. Root into it, it wants to nourish you. Growth comes from retreating to the home, and for caring for yourself. You are worthy.

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Cristina is an astrologer and writer, and is the founder of Eighth House Astrology, her astrological consulting practice. She is the contributing astrologer and co-author of the Celestial Bodies Oracle, a new oracle deck from Serpentfire, due out in 2020. She imagines our natal charts as lush celestial embroidery hovering over our shoulders. Fondness for descent into the underworld. Occultist, poet, translator, Neptunian lamentress. She hangs myrtle above her bed.
Cristina is an astrologer and writer, and is the founder of Eighth House Astrology, her astrological consulting practice. She is the contributing astrologer and co-author of the Celestial Bodies Oracle, a new oracle deck from Serpentfire, due out in 2020. She imagines our natal charts as lush celestial embroidery hovering over our shoulders. Fondness for descent into the underworld. Occultist, poet, translator, Neptunian lamentress. She hangs myrtle above her bed.


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