Urania's Well: Astrology for Changing Times

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Mercurial Magic

b2ap3_thumbnail_globe-with-internet.jpg“…in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.” Max Ehrmann

There is a New Moon in Gemini on May 28th, and Mercury — planet of the mind, of information, technology, journalism, teaching, curiosity, and ruler of Gemini — owns this chart. He stands right on the Midheaven of the chart cast for Washington, DC., strong in his own sign of Gemini, ruling, not only the Sun and Moon, but the Midheaven and Ascendant as well. (Get the chart here)

Things are never boring when Mercury is powerfully placed in a chart, and it looks like the month ahead will be marked by an almost obsessive focus on the need for information, questions about the appropriate use of both information and technology, and developments in the ongoing conversation between science and religion. We’ll see ideas and opinions flitting about as thick as fireflies on a summer night — and many of them will be as ephemeral. Escapism, particularly into drugs, fantasy and religion, will be rife, as will deception, fast-talking, and sermonizing. Mercury is also the planet of commerce, so we can expect considerations of business, and the ease of doing business, to be prominent. There may be legal challenges or decisions that have a strong impact on the conduct of business. The conduct of foreign policy is also emphasized. The Cardinal Cross is still in orb, and the presence of Pluto in the 4th house of this chart suggests major environmental issues, particularly involving any underground aspect, especially nuclear waste storage.


People with Mercury strong in their charts are sometimes accused of shallowness — particularly Geminis, whose Suns are ruled by Mercury, and who often have Mercury in Gemini as well (because Mercury never strays far from the Sun). This airy sign embodies the winds that sweep along the Earth’s surface, stirring up and mixing particles of earth and carrying them to new places. But a broad if relatively shallow approach to a topic is not necessarily a bad thing. If you’re driving across the country, you want a map of the roads on the surface, not an in-depth geological survey. Information-gathering and organizing — Mercury’s special talent — is the first step in making wise decisions.

Mercury is also strongly associated with magic, for we must be able to clearly perceive the world around us, to gather information, to organize and communicate our thoughts if we are to practice magic effectively, and Mercury, planet of the mind, rules raw perception. We also must develop the ability to walk between the worlds, and Mercury is both messenger and psychopomp — the guide of souls.

One good example of Mercurial magic can be found in the accusations of “hashtag activism” and resulting fuss that erupted around the use of the #BringBackOurGirls hashtag (Heather Greene covers the subject well here). Twitter, with its 140 character limit, immediacy and information overload is Mercury incarnate, and so are arguments – Mercury loves a good argument. Despite all the comments about the shallowness of using a hashtag and then getting on with one’s comfortable Western life, the sustained attention and expressions of concern have brought world-wide attention to the subject — hopefully making the girls’ rescue more likely. (Personally, I think it quite likely, and soon.) One article even took Americans to task for encouraging the USA’s involvement in the situation, stating that using the hashtag made one “a complicit participant in a military expansionist agenda on the continent of Africa.”  Whew. That’s one powerful hashtag.

The ability to control and direct the mind is a hallmark of the magician, and working on mental discipline is an excellent way to handle a Mercury retrograde period — which begins June 7 and runs through the rest of the month. On a personal level, the challenge of this New Moon is to stay grounded, and to look under surface appearances for deeper meaning. It’s important to get the facts straight, but decisions need to be made from facts considered in the light of values. Meditation, or at least periods of quiet reflection, will help soothe an over-stimulated nervous system, something many of us will find necessary. Breath meditations should be particularly effective now.

You may find illusions breaking down during these next few weeks — and you’ll want to be careful that you don’t build new ones. The New Moon is in a tense aspect to mystical Neptune, strong in its own sign of Pisces, which means you may find yourself industriously running around trying to sort, organize and pin down the intangible, or desperately trying to put the indefinable into words. Almost certainly, you’ll see a lot of that sort of behavior around you. Gemini is all about granularity; Pisces is all about flow — give them both a place at your table, and remind the highly-strung people in your life to breathe.

All in all, sincere efforts at communication are likely to be rewarded this month, as long as you stay flexible and willing to shift gears on a moment’s notice if new information dictates change. Insist on clarity and perspective from yourself and others and the month can bring you both insight and personal progress.





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Tagged in: magick mercury new moon

Diotima Mantineia began studying astrology in 1968, taking classes from Zoltan Mason in New York City. For the next 22 years, she practiced astrology only for herself and her friends, continuing her studies while watching an increasingly humanistic, psychologically oriented, modern astrology blossom through the work of leading astrologers such as Noel Tyl, Liz Greene, Rob Hand, Marion March, Stephen Arroyo and Howard Sasportas. In 1986, Diotima began her study of Wicca and started reading Tarot, discovering that she is a gifted intuitive. In 1991, she began practicing both astrology and Tarot professionally. She majored in plant and soil science both in college and grad school, and grows much of her own food and "materia magica" on her land in the mountains of western North Carolina. Diotima’s personal spiritual path is rooted in the Western mystery traditions, the principles of Yoga, and a profound connection with the natural world. Wicca gives structure to her spiritual journey, and she utilizes shamanic practices for healing and to live in harmony with Nature. Over 15 years of studying Chinese martial arts has given her a deep appreciation of Taoist thought which has strongly influenced her magical and personal philosophy. You can find her at www.uraniaswell.com


  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor Sunday, 25 May 2014

    Thank you for this. I am a Gemini (June 2nd). I appreciate your reminder about Meditation and quiet reflection. Could you please explain a bit more about the statement, "Gemini is all about granularity"?

  • Diotima
    Diotima Monday, 26 May 2014

    Ted, Gemini tends to break down information into the smallest possible bits, because it's easier to organize and keep track of that way. For instance, if you have a database of people with the fields "name" and "address", you aren't going to be able to sort that list by last name and state. You need to break it down into more fields -- "first name" "last name" "street address" "city" "state". Gemini likes to find out who they know that lives in any state they are visiting. Pisces just figures the Universe will make sure they meet up with who they are supposed to. :-)

  • Diotima
    Diotima Monday, 26 May 2014

    Oh, and Happy Birthday!

  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor Monday, 26 May 2014

    Thanks for the birthday wishes, Diotima! You're right about my wanting to know every little thing about a person. When I was teaching Yoga, one of my greatest pleasures was to connect students with like-minded others whom I knew they would "click" with. I could do that because I took an interest in getting to know each one. Once again, your astrological intuition is spot-on.

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