The summer is about to get slower, if no less complex. Mercury turns retrograde this Tuesday through August 19 and joins Mars, Saturn, Pluto, Neptune, and Chiron already retrograde, or appear to back up against the zodiac because of difference between our orbit and ours. When the planets appear move backwards it’s a good time for us to look backwards, to review where we’ve been, remember what we’ve learned in our personal and cultural history. Notice personal and political issues that we thought we’d already overcome but are now back up for another lay of work on the spiral of life. The past can feel very present with us in retrograde season.
Retrogrades ask us to slow down, forget what we thought we were going to do and tend to the work that shows up. It helps to keep our sense of humor, so the small snafus and the strange non-sequiturs amuse us rather than make us grim. Leave extra room in all schedules because strange delays will arise and have a back-up plan for mechanical and electrical functions. To thrive over the next month, check the alarm clock twice, and check for misunderstandings whenever there’s tension, distill recent lessons, enjoy some time off, and catch up with the soul.
Let’s take time alone when we need it this weekend. Our energy can flow in and out like a breath as the Moon in introverted Scorpio echoes the privacy of the Sun in Cancer, and conjuncts expansive Jupiter which enlivens our inner worlds, while Mercury in extroverted Leo takes our mind outwards and can make it feel urgent to be seen. But we can breathe with it, reach out, collect within, and reach out again. The Scorpio Moon can bring out the suspicious and snarky edge, and the retrograde planet lineup can make it hard to see what’s really going on, which will have an interesting effect on political commentary. Just be careful with this edge in the gossip circuits and when reflecting upon oneself.
The energy shifts on Sunday as the Sun enters outgoing Leo and the Moon enters restless, outspoken Sagittarius; these fire signs call us out of our house and our head to deal with the social whirl and larger world. As the week progresses, put safety first, particularly when dealing with any mechanical process, like driving a car or wrestling and air conditioner.
We won’t get lost in that busy social life as Venus in introspective and earthy Virgo continues to ground us all week, feed our critical and creative mind, and keep our compassionate heart warm. But with Venus in Virgo and five planets retrograde, we may need to process the past as a recreational sport, dig up old relationships and go over what happened one more time. Or dust off old manuscripts or plans and look at them with a fresh eye. Let’s keep the focus not on what went wrong, because that’s an unproductive loop, but how to do it differently next time.
A new industriousness kicks in on Tuesday as the Moon enters Capricorn and conjuncts serious Saturn, but we may just spin in circles unless we organize and focus carefully and with patience. Mercury retrogrades and Venus is directly opposed Neptune so we stay busy but may not be quite sure where we’re going. It’s a good time to tidy up loose ends, to pull out the art supplies and let the imagination roam.
All will work out okay if we keep our pace slow and pay attention. Allow room for the heart, keep an eye out for new connections built from old contacts or found through returning to an old place or familiar territory. Just stay in the moment with new relationships rather than make assumptions about where they’re going, take one step at a time.
Later in the week, the Sun opposes Mars and gives us energy, but tests our control over our temper, klutziness, and impulse.
Friday, July 20: A self-protective and introverted mood whispers as the Moon enters Scorpio; it’s hard to get out of ourselves and see our world from another’s perspective, but we can look within, research, look under the rocks and get to the root of the problem. While it is a powerful day for spiritual retreat, we may feel approach-avoidance conflicts around being seen, a competing need for privacy and attention can bring on mixed messages between people. And if hurt, people will lash out. It furthers to look at the beautiful moon-Jupiter conjunction tonight and let it free the heart.
Moon sextile Saturn 3:04 AM, Moon squares Mars 6:12 AM, Moon Sextile Venus 5:40 PM, Moon conjunct Jupiter 8:28 PM
Saturday, July 21: Imagination abounds this morning, deal with logistical questions midday. Honor hot and cold moods, honestly mixed messages and be careful around snaggles of communication understanding or transportation this afternoon as the Moon squares Mercury. Tonight, it’s easier to watch a movie or have deep conversation, then just hang out; investigate the world or share experience rather than investigate one another.
Moon trine Neptune 1:38 AM, Moon sextile Pluto 8:28 AM, Moon square Mercury 2:01 PM
Sunday, July 22: Drop it. Forgiveness is in the air as Venus sextiles Jupiter, some emotional tension softens, our world can become more spacious if we let it as the Moon enter Sagittarius this morning and the Sun enters Leo this afternoon. We can expect a few ego issues along the way, but can use this window of collaboration to help us connect.
Moon trine Sun 3:17 AM, Venus sextile Jupiter 3:20 AM, Moon enters Sagittarius 4:12 AM, Moon sextile Mars 2:36 PM, Sun enters Leo 3:01 PM.
Monday, July 23: Fresh relationships are in the air, new connections built from old contacts, but stay in the moment with new relationships rather than make assumptions about where they are going. Take one step at a time. Physical and emotional safety is found in mindfulness, in being where we are at this moment rather than living in the past or projecting into the future as Venus approaches an opposition to Neptune. Find a good way to use imagination and keep it out of trouble.
Moon square Venus 9:35 AM, Moon square Neptune 12:06 PM.
Tuesday, July 24: We can feel great determination, but lack all the facts or tools we need as the Moon enters Capricorn while Venus opposes Neptune. People want to control when they get anxious, and can get anxious without having the facts, which will make for some interesting politics. Within this is an opportunity correcting a misperception and for healing by just showing up and being present and helpful. People may have difficulty talking about their feelings, so look at what they do more than what they say.
Moon trine Mercury 2:21 AM, Venus opposed Neptune 1:22 PM, Moon enters Capricorn 3:48 PM, Moon trine Uranus 8:49 PM, Sun trine Chiron 11:32 PM, Moon conjunct Saturn 11:46 PM.
Wednesday, July 25: If we’re ready to let go, now may be the time to do so. Unsettling changes are in on the horizon as the Sun squares Uranus and Mercury retrogrades. The energy can be staccato, we can feel like our fur is being brushed backwards, but it’s not the fault of the people nearby. Breathe through frustration. Hold hands and duck under the energetic turbulence; find the calm in the center.
Sun square Uranus 5:35 AM, Moon sextile Jupiter 7:31 PM, Mercury turns retrograde 11:02 PM.
Thursday, July 26: Put safety first today as the Sun opposes Mars and the Moon conjunct Pluto. A brush with mortality can bring us closer to our hearts more compassionate in our nature or make us control freaks. Our choice. Difficulties encourage us to bench-press our emotional muscles and do the right thing, rather than react, but we may need a safe place to vent, to throw rocks but not at a person. Don’t drive while angry. Hold a boundary firm.
Moon sextile Neptune 12:28 AM, Moon sextile Venus 4:03 AM, Moon conjunct Pluto 7:41 AM, Sun quincunx Saturn 3:39 PM, Sun opposed Mars 11:13 PM.