At 2:41 pm EDT, retrograde Mercury will make its interior (or more technically, ‘inferior’) conjunction to the Sun in Cancer. This is Mercury passing between the Earth and the Sun, the most basic way to describe what Mercury retrograde is about. The pair will be making a 150-degree aspect to the minor planet Juno in Aquarius, which in total could be summed up with the theme of how your relationships exist in the context of the people that surround them.
Juno has been traveling through Aquarius since mid-March, and will be there for the rest of 2013. One thing that aspects to Juno in Aquarius keep bringing up for consideration is the sense that socially institutionalized forms of relationship and partnering are ripe for restructuring, generally along the idea that form should follow function (that is, individual needs) — rather than the reverse.
Aquarius, ruled by Saturn (traditional) and Uranus (modern), is a sign where the breaking of old forms and crystallization of new ones is continually at play. There may be astrological configurations where Juno in Aquarius represents that more Uranian part of the cycle (the new idea breaking through).
In the case of Juno’s current aspect to Mercury and the Sun, however, it seems to symbolize the social pressure to relate a certain way, to follow the rules; in both roles, recognition of the social dynamics around relationship is part of the picture. In contrast, Mercury conjunct the Sun represents individual needs — particularly related to emotional security or a sense of being at home in one’s own skin; your feelings.
The aspect that Mercury and the Sun are making to Juno is a quincunx, which is one sign off from an opposition. It’s an aspect that asks for continual adjustment as you try to find what feels right to you, negotiating back and forth between two nearly opposite possibilities.
As indicated in the title, you could call it a “what gives” equation. Do you subvert your needs in favor of people who really have nothing to do with your inner life, in an effort to get their approval? Or are you willing to make your own relationship agreements, despite the friction that may cause with your family members or social circle? When does ‘being in the flow’ mean bucking the current, rather than traveling the path of least resistance through your social environment?
Both the sign Cancer and the asteroid Juno relate to themes around mothers and mothering. In Juno’s case, sometimes that becomes “a mother’s ideas about what we’re supposed to do and who we’re supposed to marry,” as Eric has observed in his astrological counseling.
With Mercury urging us to look inward and the Sun shining some light on what we find there, this is as good a time as any to get clear with yourself on what you actually need and want in your relationships, and the sense of ‘home’ that they contribute to. Your insights might take a little extra explaining to others, but does it really matter what others think — assuming you’re not acting with malicious selfishness?
We get some reinforcement of this theme later this week. On July 11, Venus (the goddess of love) in Leo (the sign of will and consciousness of self) opposes Juno. If that’s not a message about letting your own heart be your guide in the face of social expectations, what is?
With Eric Francis