Here comes another Mercury retrograde! The next Mercury retrograde occurs entirely in Virgo, bringing too much on our plates. What will this retrograde do for us?
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The Basics - What is Mercury retrograde?
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, 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 it's moving slowly. There's usually two storm periods, one around the time Mercury turns retrograde, and one around when it turns direct.
Mercury Retrograde in Virgo 2023 Key Dates:
Mercury Retrograde in Virgo Effects:
The Virgo Mercury retrograde is usually one that is extra stressful thanks to Virgo ruling stress. We're stressed out about everything, and if you're normally a stressed out person, it can be even worse than usual! You may be on the edge constantly, and need some relief.
It's important to have a healthy outlet or two for stress going into this retrograde. That's the best idea to manage it well. If you don't have that, be ready for feeling super anxious and nervous and always fraying.
Virgo is the sign of work, governing our jobs, as well as tasks, chores, and small projects. We may take on extra work, in our jobs and at home, and this may push us over the edge, so it's important not to take on too much. We need to balance work with play, otherwise we're stressed to the max.
On the other hand, some of us may want to completely ignore any and all work, tasks, chores, and projects, and try to be as carefree as possible. This probably is a bad idea though, and we end up running from responsibilities that we shouldn't avoid.
If you have a job and hate what you do, you're likely going to hate it even more with this retrograde. There may be some bad news overall about jobs, or something coming back in style. If you like what you do, you can be okay as long as you don't take on too much and stress yourself out.
Virgo also rules our everyday lives, so there can be lots of little things that require more of our attention. With Virgo ruling the details, we can struggle with them, either too lost in them to get a clear view of the picture, or too far from them and unable to get any information. We may need to take a different approach to the details and to everyday things, shake things up a little bit, in order to see more clearly.
Virgo is the perfectionist, and we tend to demand too much of ourselves or others, demanding perfection that can't be attained. We may have to get to the root cause of this, and work to let loose a little bit so we're not stressing ourselves out so much.
Virgo rules our health and habits, so this retrograde might bring out health issues and stall our good habits while amplifying bad ones. It's a good opportunity to prioritize your overall well being though, and you can make more time to take care of yourself, which can help with stress (can you tell stress is the main theme?). This is also a good time for routine maintenance of all kinds.
Mercury is the natural ruler of Virgo, so much of this is extra amplified, more than the usual Mercury retrograde. We're kind of a wreck at times, and we need to be extra mindful of that main theme, stress!
The retrograde begins with Mercury trine (beneficial aspect) Uranus in Taurus, who is going to turn retrograde 5 days later. This can help us think outside of the box and experiment with new ways of addressing stress, frustrations, work, and taking care of ourselves. A different approach may help in ways we hadn't thought of.
Mercury Retrograde in Virgo 2023 Aspects:
During the retrograde, Mercury will make just 2 major aspects to the other transit (moving) planets. They are:
- Conjunct the Sun on September 6th 2023 @ 13 degrees Virgo: This is the Inferior Conjunction, a positive point in the retrograde for starting something that can be a focus for the next 6-8 weeks; find where it falls in your chart, and that may be where you can start something.
- Trine Jupiter on September 4th 2023 @ 15 degrees Virgo/Taurus: This is a pleasant aspect, and comes as Jupiter is about to turn retrograde itself, so it begins with some pleasant energy. We can come up with big ideas, pick back up old big projects, and regain a solid view of the big picture.
The Moons of Mercury Retrograde:
The Moon travels through both signs Mercury naturally rules during this retrograde. The Moon is in Gemini (ruled by Mercury) September 5th 2023 (4:07PM ET/1:07PM PT) to 8th (1AM ET/September 7th @ 10PM PT), which can increase scattered, unfocused energy and a need for a mental outlet.
The Moon is in Virgo (ruled by Mercury and the sign the retrograde it comes in) right at the end of the retrograde, September 13th 2023 (1:18AM ET/September 12th @ 10:18PM PT) to September 15th (1:45PM ET/10:45AM PT), and this increases anxiety and stress.
The retrograde starts at 21 degrees Virgo, so those of you Virgos born September 11th - 17th may feel the start of the retrograde most. The retrograde ends at 8 degrees Virgo, so those of you Virgos born August 28th - September 3rd may feel the end of the retrograde most.
For the rest of you, check the house(s) Mercury will be retrograding in 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. If it's in your natal chart, check out this article about Mercury retrograde in the natal chart.
Suggested Reading: The Mercury, Venus, & Mars Retrogrades page for interpretations