The basics: A retrograde occurs when a planet appears to be moving backwards from our vantage point here on Earth. It isn't actually moving backwards, it just appears that way. Mercury turns retrograde most often because it's nearest to us, about 3-4 times per year, and lasts for several weeks. When a planet retrogrades, what that planet rules tends to be thrown off, along with what the sign it's retrograding in rules.
With Mercury retrograde, we experience a shadow and a storm. The shadow period starts when Mercury first hits the point in the zodiac it will turn direct at, and ends when it last hits the point in the zodiac it will turn retrograde at. Most people don't feel the effects of Mercury retrograde until it enters the storm period though. The storm period of Mercury retrograde is when Mercury is moving at its slowest, less than 40 minutes per day. Mercury is a fast-moving planet and hates it when he's moving slowly. There's usually two storm periods, one around the time Mercury turns retrograde, and one around when it turns direct.
The shadow of this Mercury retrograde begins February 8th and ends April 6th, lasting eight weeks. The first storm period will be from February 19th - 28th, and the second will be from March 12th - 26th. The exact retrograde begins February 23rd at 4:41AM ET and ends March 17th at 4:03PM ET.
The water signs are taking their turn with the Mercury retrogrades, and this retrograde will occur entirely in the sign of Pisces. What does Pisces rule? Well, let's start with the general fact that this is a water sign, so our emotions are all askew. We too closely identify with things and become emotional in situations where it's not warranted, and it's harder to calm us down. This is especially true in Pisces, which rules the emotional train wreck (as a Pisces Moon, I know that well). Since it's a Mercury retrograde and Mercury rules communications, we're too sensitive with the words spoken to us, and too insensitive with the words we speak to others.
Pisces rules karma and emotional baggage, and that could be coming back to bite us as a whole. Countries/societies may see things from the past come back to haunt them. The things we thought were dead are suddenly dancing in our faces and delighting in the torment. Secrets could come out, dirty little secrets that we're ashamed of. We try to hide as much as possible, but don't succeed at all.
Pisces also rules fantasy and imagination, where the dark side is illusions and delusions. We may have a difficult time seeing the reality of situations, not wanting to face the truth and believing only the lies we tell ourselves to make ourselves feel better. If you find yourself muttering about how delusional everyone seems to be, you'll know why.
Pisces rules water (so we could see a prevalent water issue), feet, music (a music scandal?), as well as addictions and escapism (maybe someone high profile enters rehab, falls off of the wagon, or we're all drinking like fishes to deal with this retrograde!).
The turn retrograde begins at 19 degrees Pisces, so those of you Pisces born March 7th - 11th may feel the turn retrograde most. The turn direct occurs at 5 degrees Pisces, so those of you Pisces born February 22nd - 26th may feel the turn direct most.
For the rest of you, check the house(s) Mercury will be retrograding in of your own natal chart, and any aspects Mercury will make during its retrograde to your natal planets, to fully understand how it will impact you personally.
If you have Mercury retrograde in your natal or progressed chart, you may not feel the worst of this. Those individuals generally don't experience the difficulties of the retrograde because it feels more natural to them. Of course, chances are everyone else around them doesn't have the same aspect, so they can still experience difficulties brought on by others.
February 2013 Full & New Moons: New Moon in Aquarius & Full Moon in Virgo
A full moon occurs when the transit (moving) Sun and Moon are exactly opposing one another in the zodiac. It tends to signal a time of endings, culminations, and things coming to fruition. A new moon occurs when when the transit Sun and Moon are in the exact same spot in the zodiac. It tends to signal a time of new opportunities, growth, and optimism.
For information on how the new/full moons may impact your sign, read the monthly horoscope.
February 10th 2013 New Moon in Aquarius
A new moon occurs at 2:20AM ET at 21 degrees 43 minutes of Aquarius. In Aquarius, we want to be different. The way things have always been is not the way we want them to be right now. We're drawn to new ideas, new solutions, and try to look at things in ways that we'd normally never think of. It's a time to push boundaries and go against social norms. We may see unusual people or unusual things gain popularity. Look at your own life and see where you can break out of the box. The world needs to be shaken up every so often, including your own. We're more prone to rebellion, especially if we feel we're being held back or forced to be something that we're not. We take a more intellectual approach to situations, wanting to think things through thoroughly, perhaps to the point of not actually getting much done. We're more concerned with the future, and we want to forge a better future for ourselves and future generations. If you're an Aquarius Sun, Moon, or late Aquarius rising, you may feels the effects of this moon most.
February 25th 2013 Full Moon in Virgo
A full moon occurs at 3:26PM ET at 7 degrees 24 minutes of Virgo. In Virgo, those perfectionist tendencies get kicked up a notch. If we don't live up to the standards we've placed upon ourselves, we become too hard on ourselves. We're more analytical in our approach to situations, trying to be detached emotionally so we can be as practical as possible. Imagination or fantasy is not the name of the game, rather, practicality or realism is. We may be more restrictive, restrained, disciplined, and focused on the little details instead of the bigger picture. Since Virgo is an Earth sign, we may become focused on the Earth for some reason (hopefully not a bad one, but this is a full moon after all, and anyone who hasn't been treating the Earth well runs the risk of being punished now). This full moon squares transit (moving) Jupiter in Gemini, so we may have issues with being too lazy, indulgent, not wanting to be responsible, and could get in trouble with the things we say. If you're a Virgo Sun, Moon, or rising, you may feel the effects of this moon most.
ARCHIVE: January 2013 Horoscope
General horoscopes are always meant for entertainment purposes only. For a more accurate view, read your Sun sign, Rising sign, and Moon sign.
ARIES JANUARY 2013
On January 8th, Venus enters earth sign Capricorn, and you should have an easier time dealing with your career. Decisions that must be made come easier to you, and advancements you’re trying to make come with less effort. Conversely, you may be lazier with your career, and not want to do any work at all but expect things to happen for you anyway. If you work in a creative/artistic field, or in beauty/fashion, this is a good placement for you. It’s also good for making a good impression in public, if you need to. You’ll likely get along better with bosses, mentors, parents, or other authority figures in your life, and they could be more helpful to you than usual.