By Len Wallick
Tonight, less than half an hour before the Full Moon, Mercury will enter its echo (or shadow) phase at 18+ Leo. That marks a boundary and a beginning. While the fleet one does not station retrograde until August 2, this passage stakes out what will be its furthest retreat. Crossing this point of entry into echo phase, Mercury will be precisely conjunct the asteroid Isis. That conjunction will open a continuum to both parallel and distinguish this particular retrograde cycle. In your life it may feel like remembering the future and anticipating the past while standing in forever. There may also be the sense that something is trying to get your attention.
In the words of astrologer Sheila Belanger, when a planet moves from one sign to another, it is as if the archetype it represents changes its costume. The symbolic intellectual energy of Mercury is currently wrapped in the raiment of Leo and the Sun, its ruler. This favors our thoughts and communication being brought to bear on matters of the conscious self. That was a theme of Gary’s Caton’s expository on the Full Moon in the Planet Waves subscriber edition two days ago. Yet there is another process, an echo, if you will, initiating in parallel and still below the surface with the beginning of Mercury’s shadow phase today.
When a planet in direct motion moves into the space it is destined to retrace, it slows down as if to listen to an echo from its own future. Appropriately, Mercury is not only listening but communicating the feel of that future to our minds by conjoining with Isis from the get-go. That is because this retrograde will not only repeatedly encounter but also express the archetype of that asteroid in several other forms.
Shortly before crossing over into Virgo, where it will station retrograde on August 2, Mercury will make its first of three conjunctions with a hypothetical point. That imaginary object, is called Isis-Transpluto. It has occupied the last degree of Leo for a long time. That is a place Eric has referred to as the sphinx point, where the Goddess energy is strong and “where we combine the energy of a woman with the energy of a cat. Or maybe just notice.”
Isis-Transpluto is a mathematical artifact, of sorts. Based on the irregularities in the orbital motions of Uranus and Pluto, it commemorates the early effort to find the solar system’s missing pieces in order to account for those aberrations. Its archetype signifies the sudden and seemingly chaotic release of energy, leading to a transformation or rebirth.
Which takes us full circle, to August 26 when Mercury stations direct again at the very spot where it is today. That date corresponds to the re-appearance of the brightest star on the eastern horizon. You may remember Sirius from the end of May when it sparkled fiercely in the western twilight. Since that time, its impossible brilliance has been obscured by the light of the Sun. Its helical rise (re-appearance before the dawn) was a sacred moment for the ancient Egyptians, foretelling the annual flooding of the Nile. That sudden and seemingly chaotic inundation, ascribed to the tears of (you guessed it) Isis, nourished and transformed the desert into arable land, re-birthing an ancient kingdom.
In the mythology, those tears were of grief for a loss only partially recovered. As the story goes, Osiris, the beloved consort of Isis, was murdered and dismembered. Parts of his body were scattered far and wide. The heroic quest of the goddess to find the missing pieces was only partially successful. Osiris was not quite the same and survived his resurrection only long enough to give his wife a son.
So it is that this impending Mercury retrograde is interwoven, through repeated conjunctions and precise timing, with the mythology of Isis. It is also concurrent with the dwarf planet, Ceres, occupying the Aries point, melding the mythology of two ancient cultures into one and involving all of us together, all at the same time, now.
From the personal to the political, the Divine Feminine is going to some extraordinary lengths to get our attention. It is subtle now, outshone by the summer Sun and its own heroic quest for what Gary Caton called “…the development of self-awareness and self-actualization.” That whisper, however, is destined to get louder as Sol moves south. The message is not yet fully revealed but we can be as clear about two thematic points as we are about the point of return that Mercury occupies today. We can be sure that the quest of the goddess will complement and complete that of the masculine Sun. We can also be certain that we will have a role in shaping the outcome.
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