Mercury retrograde happens three times a year, and it creates a great deal of panic each time. We’ve just begun the new year and already have Mercury retrograde. While many people dread the period when Mercury is retrograde, Vedic astrology, or Jyotish, offers a somewhat varying perspective than Western astrology. In Vedic astrology, retrogression is seen as a sign of strength. Mercury retrograde January, 2016 lasts from the 5th to the 25th.
When a planet is retrograde, it is closer to the earth than usual. People feel its presence more powerfully than normal, for better or worse. Retrogression connotes the notion of repetition, renewal, and revisiting of situations.
Being dual-minded, Mercury creates a desire to pursue at least two varying paths simultaneously. Mercury’s innate ability to multi-task is hampered by its slow motion. There can be bouts of frustration which impact the nervous system (or majja dhatu in Ayurveda) due to the slow moving impediment. As the indicator for commerce, Mercury is powerfully able to use its versatility and intellect to create opportunities for itself. There is emphasis on the thinking mind in communication, but the thoughts may be repetitive. Communication may also be misinterpreted.
Mercury retrograde January, 2016 begins with Mercury in Capricorn and transits into Sagittarius on January 14, which is also the festival of Makar Sankranti. It will occupy the constellations or nakshatras of Purva Ashadha and Uttara Ashadha. These two stars are associated with non-ending improvement, and helping loved ones attain their own goals. They have a great deal of forbearance, patience, and composure to fulfill their mission. Uttara Ashadha is symbolized by an elephant’s trunk and thus linked with Lord Ganesha. It gives the opportunity to penetrate its target.
Capricorn represents the 10th house of the natural zodiac, which corresponds to career, authority, and the knees. Sagittarius is the 9th house of the natural zodiac and relates to foreign travel, spirituality, and father. Pay attention to how these subjects come to the forefront in your life during this Mercury retrograde January, 2016.
Jupiter, the other planet of communication and education, also turns retrograde in Leo on January 7.
Here are some tips for making the most of this Mercury retrograde January, 2016:
- Do not sign any legal contracts or enter into new agreements or partnerships, as there is the likelihood that the contracts may have to be revised or that they will not go through.
- Consult health care practitioners on methods to support your nervous system and joint health.
- Be mindful of workplace related communication. Pay particular attention to the precision of your thoughts, words and actions.
- Worship Ganesha
- Use the time when Mercury is retrograde for writing / authorship. This involves preparing lectures
- Avoid being too frank or blunt in your conversations
- Do not commence new educational pursuits
- Take this opportunity to review your personal or professional skills and determine how you may improve them
- Use herbal supplements to support mentally taxing activities
- Pick up your favorite religious or spiritual texts and write out key teachings that relate to dharma
In retrogression, what is most problematic is when a planet goes from being direct (forward motion) to retrograde or from being retrograde to being direct. For any planet to change direction, it initially slows down considerably. A planet seems as if it is stationary for a period of time and then gradually gains momentum.
Mercury turns direct on January 25 and is back to its quick daily movement on February 6. More about Mercury retrograde will be posted on my Facebook page.
The specific influence of Mercury retrograde during January, 2016 for you will depend on the placement of planets in your personal chart. See what Sagittarius and Capricorn indicate in your chart. Planetary cycles also have to be factored in to determine how you can utilize this time to your advantage, and what cautions may be warranted. A personalized Vedic astrology reading will take all these details into consideration.