The Coming Solar Eclipse and Mercury Retrograde

Posted on November 16, 2011
Posted by Jim Sher


This article takes a look at the potentially important date of November 23-24, 2011, when two significant transits happen within hours of each other. Each of these by itself can bring about important changes, but when they coincide, one can pretty much count on it bringing some interesting effects. This will depend, of course, on whether or not, a particular chart is activated by these transits.

Mercury Retrograde

Astrology has become more and more popular in the last 10-20 years. In fact, as a result of this growth, much of the scientific community seems rather irritated and concerned with it. Even those rascally comedians, Penn & Teller have attacked it with great vigor. Yet, astrology grows in spite of or perhaps because of this criticism. Also, because more and more people are seeing the accuracy of astrology in describing what and why is happening in our daily lives. The reason why I’m so confident of this growth is that I find that many people are aware of the effects of Mercury retrograde. In fact, many people blame all sorts of things on Mercury retrograde, unfortuantely even when Mercury isn’t retrograde at all. Still, a lot of people know about the phenomenon and include it in their voccabulary.

Part of the problem with interpreting Mercury retrograde cycles is that its effects don’t just occur during the 3-week period itself. It’s actually a 4-month cycle with at least 8 sub-cycles, all of which are part of a holistic understanding of the retrograde cycle. I say this because Mercury doesn’t turn retrograde until Nov. 23rd, 2011at 11:21pm PST, but is affecting us already. It will turn retrograde at 20° of Sagittarius and will then go back to 3° Sag. on Dec. 14th , 2011. It is affecting us now because it is already slowing down and is in what is called the ‘shadow’ period. This is the territory in which Mercury will travel three times. This means that wherever it is located in a person’s natal chart signifies an area on one’s life that will be given focused attention for almost 2 months. Specifically, from Nov. 5, 2011 through Jan. 1, 2012, Mercury will be traveling between 3° – 20° of Sagittarius. If you are a serious follower of astrology you may want to know where this territory is located in your chart and what aspect of your life will be receiving special focus and understanding.

This is much closer to how Mercury retrograde cycles affect us. The view that Mercury retrograde periods bring about computer crashes, car repairs, problems with phones and other forms of communications, delays in deliveries, cancellations of appointments, etc. are all a common part of this cycle, to be sure. There are often a lot of inconveniences that come up for us at this time. But, frankly, this is due in part to not caring for these ‘predictable’ problems much earlier. Maybe we were too busy with other things to change the oil, fix the heater, and so on. Suddenly, Mercury retrograde strikes and problems occur that could have been prevented if we chose to get them fixed earlier. Still, surprises do occur as a natural part of the cycle.

Basically, this is Mercury retrograde is a time to focus on two things:

  1. It is a time to review.
  2. It is a time to finish projects that are near completion.

The Solar Eclipse

Solar eclipses are inertia changers. They can suddenly change the direction and momentum of events in a person’s life. This eclipse takes place about 23 hours after Mercury changes direction. It happens on Nov. 24th, 2011 at 10:10pm at 2° Sagittarius. If your Sun, Moon, or Ascendant occurs with 1°-2° from that point, then there is a strong likelihood that you will notice this eclipse. People who have the same degree in the mutable signs of Virgo, Gemini or Pisces will also be affected.

I will be going deeper into the chart of this eclipse in next week’s article but I would like to mention the Saros cycle that this eclipse activates. It is called 14 North and is considered to be an indicator of odd or strange effects. Specifically, it can bring about a time of confusion in personal relationships (Venus and Neptune dancing together), unexpected happenings in financial matters, and even a degree of disappointment and despair. However, it may be more of a feeling from within than a reaction to a specific event or happening. This is not a time to make important decisions as one’s response may not be accurate, due to confusion, miscommunication and even delusion from others. By the way, this is also not a good time to make significant decisions due to Mercury going retrograde.

As in all matters, sometimes we are forced by life situations to make decisions whether we like or not, so if you are faced with that necessity, then use as much caution as possible and if possible, see if one can delay having to finalize the matter.

Next week I will be going deeper into both the Mercury retrograde and Solar Eclipse areas.

Astrology Mercury Retrograde Solar Eclipse
Jim Sher

Jim brings over 35 years of experience as a therapist and transformational counselor to his practice of astrology, metaphysics, meditation and philosophy. He operates as a teacher and counselor and specializes in the use of discourse as a part of his teaching approach.

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One response to “The Coming Solar Eclipse and Mercury Retrograde”

  1.' Ruth Williams says:

    Dear Jim,
    I have been dreading this eclipse, my birthday is 11/24, Sun in 6th. ruling 3rd. On Fri. 11/18 I spent an evening with friends. With the trans. Moon & Mars square my Sun & Sol Arc Neptune (in natal 6th), Trans Saurn (5th) opp. Uranus & square Natal Pluto (2nd house, ruler of 6th, and trans. Jupiter quincunx natal Sun I had a potentially disasterous auto mishap. My foot slipped off the brake and onto the accelerator. To avoid hitting other cars I steered the car backwards into an overgrown patch of bushes and small trees. I finally was able to stop the car, but unable to drive away until a tow truck pulled me free. No major damage to the car, though I sustained whip-lash and a few dislocated ribs. I’m tempted to cease driving, but I’m single and live alone. So paying attention and being aware will be necessary for a long period with the solar eclipse in 0 deg of Gemini next May.

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