What Happens when Mercury and Other Planets Retrograde?

Dates for 2015

Credit: Charlotte Hu.

Mercury isn't the only planet that reverses course during the year, just the most conspicuous -- and sometimes notorious -- one! 

Mercury has to do with everyday exchanges, and how we share what's happening. Mercury is the messenger, ruling media currents, mail, publishing and travel.  So perhaps it's fitting that Mercury's retrograde is the one trumpeted in media in a big way. 

All the other planets have retrograde cycles, which you'll remember is an optical illusion only.

  They aren't really moving backwards just appear to be doing that, from our vantage point. 

The Sun and Moon are the only planets that don't retrograde.

Here are the other planets and their dates for 2015.  And with it, a short note for each, on what is symbolically up for a second look.  Keep in mind that retrogrades are often seen as a potent concentration of the meaning and power of the planet in question. 

Mercury Retrograde

Here are the Mercury Retrograde Dates for 2016:

  • January 5 - January 25, 2016  First in air Aquarius, then in earth sign Capricorn
  • April 28 - May 22, 2016 in earth sign Taurus
  • August 30 - September 22, 2016 in earth sign Virgo
  • December 19 2016 - January 8, 2017 in earth Capricorn, back into fire sign Sagittarius

A refreshing and sometimes strange terrain that is blamed for confounding mix-ups, computer crashes and lost mail.  Make the most of this rewind by taking your time, and enjoying the journey, not just the destination.

  Most of the perceived stress of this phenomenon comes from frustration with delays and being taken the wrong way (or vice versa). 

You'll want to double-check deets before you press the Send or Submit (for payment) button.  It's wise to take it all in, and allow for the blending to happen, from being in the swirl of confusion.

  Very often new angles are revealed, along with new realizations. 

Venus Retrograde

Time to take stock of who is around you, in love, socially and close friendships.  Venus retrograde has each of us standing back, as if viewing a scene from the outside (like watching players on the stage while in the audience).  A theme is sussing out whether there's value in the relationship.  Along those lines, there could be a review of your own values.  It's stellar timing to reanimate a meaningful creative idea, craft or beautification plan.  A love or lost friendship could be rekindled. 

Mars Retrograde - (April 4th to June 30th, 2016)

A period of doldrums, when the wind goes out of the sails and everything seems to come to a stand still.  That makes it ideal for using that concentrated energy to bolster what's in play or process.  It's not optimal for starting something new, though it could be a time of restarting a project that fell by the wayside. 

Mars Retrograde Through the Houses:  An astrological red light district, where old flames are ignited, conflicts erupt and are potentially resolved.  Vitality, motivation, and passion are aroused, often in a concentrated way, in the arena linked to the house it's transiting.

 

Jupiter Retrograde - (January 8th to May 10th, 2016)

A time to reminisce with your most idealistic dreamer self.  Take a walk through your personal memory archives, to revisit times when the universe demonstrated its benevolence.  To recall visions that were and are worth aiming toward.  A stretch to revive your philosophy of life, in an inspired way.  Some undiluted optimism concentrates in the house and via planets Jupiter contacts.  Faith is restored, since there's a questing for the most elevating vision.

Saturn Retrograde - (March 25th to August 13th, 2016)

It's a Do-Over for the groundwork of something -- an idea, a relationship or your life as a whole.  

A time for some thorough testing of the life structures you've got in place.  If something is gutted by corruption, disease or decay, the retrograde will be the pressure that brings it down.

  Rest assured Saturn brings to the fore, what's necessary to really look at and deal with, for a solid life going forward.

Uranus Retrograde - July 30th to December 29th, 2016 

The wild card reputation of Uranus is subverted -- some may experience radical inward breakthroughs rather than more overt ones.  The wild card is kept close to the chest, as unexpected inner changes happen in a chain reaction.  Uranus inspires reforming zeal, yet this could be a time of identifying what's in need of busting up or rearranging. 

(Transiting) Uranus Aries in the Houses:  The will to REALLY live!

Neptune Retrograde - (June 14th to November 20th, 2010) 

 Neptune in Pisces

The intuitive senses are heightened, as we glean info from the subtle exchanges happening all around us.  This can be a fluid atmosphere for the imagination.  What's experienced has a concentrated feel to it, and could lead to finding your feet spiritually. 

(Transiting) Neptune in the Houses by Marguerite Manning

Pluto Retrograde - (April 18th to September 27th, 2016)

Pluto in Capricorn

A deep purge, de-toxing and elimination from the inside out.  There's a demand to go to the essence of what's in need of a massive cleaning or exorcism (!)  Pluto is thought to be more intense in retrograde, pulling us with a strong current toward what's making us sick, corrupted, soul weary.  The upside is that Pluto has not match for getting to the heart of a matter and releasing the power that's locked up, denied, buried.  Be watchful for power struggles, as they can be compulsive.  They may also hold clues to those nether realms that are below conscious awareness within our own psyche.

(Transiting) Pluto Capricorn in the Houses:  deconditioning, connecting with indigenous earth-roots, collapse and renewal.