The ancient Greeks called the planets asters planetai, or “wandering stars,” as they are in constant motion through the heavens against the fixed backdrop of the zodiac. Most of the time, planets move forward through the zodiac along a path we call the ecliptic, which is essentially the main highway. Now and then, though, planets depart from the straight and narrow to do a little extra wandering. But not all who wander are lost.

Retrograde planets are essentially seekers—not only going against the normal flow, eschewing forward motion, but also ditching the path altogether in favor of some winding side roads. This does not necessarily mean things are bound to go wrong, but it does mean that we on Earth are called to disengage auto-pilot, be observant, take our time, and take a lot less for granted.

Mercury is the planet of communication, commerce, and movement. Because it’s involved in almost all day-to-day activity, Mercury retrogrades—and their accompanying departures from the usual and the ordinary—are typically quite noticeable. If we release our expectations, this can be a fun and exciting shift.


The three Mercury retrogrades of 2019 occur predominantly in the water signs of Pisces, Cancer, and Scorpio. In fact, due to some extra meandering, Mercury is slated to spend more time in the three water signs than just about all the other signs combined.

Water is receptive in nature, so the effects of Mercury retrograde in this element can be subtler when compared to its occurrence in others. Water has no shape of its own, taking on the shape of its surroundings; and with water, most of the interesting things are happening below the surface. Likewise, you may notice that something feels different before you can fully discern exactly what it is. You’re likely to feel unusually susceptible to the moods of others or the nature of your surroundings. Conversely, you may be able to affect the group vibe through emotional appeals. Water tends to unify and pool together in large bodies, so popularity can swing in great tides this year. An example? The enormously popular new age books The Celestine Prophecy and The Secret were both released during years with Mercury retrogrades in water signs.



Water Signs: Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces

Some of the people, places, and things that are the most central to your life are likely to shift this year, and thus the way you feel about them could as well. The great news is that while you can’t control these changes, you can control your reactions to them; in this way, you could become a port in the storm for weary travelers. At the same time, you may find that there are things about your own basic identity that you actually want to change—and with a similar kind of support, these periods may be the perfect time to seek something new.

Fire Signs: Aries, Leo, Sagittarius

Water is your opposite element: in any direct interaction, water puts out your fire or you heat it to a boiling point. Therefore, an indirect approach is likely best. If you can take some time to rest and cool off, then the embers of your fire become easier for others to handle. As such, when things veer from the normal course, don’t allow yourself to get worked up—just pull over and take in the view for a bit. Curb your desire to go it alone and either ask for help or commiserate with others on your detour. You may just find a short cut together.

Earth Signs: Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn

You may have to put aside your natural practicality, relax your boundaries, and go with the flow. Allow yourself to feel as much as you think, and to honor your connections. Try to sense the universal messages always surrounding you.

Air Signs: Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius

Slow down, practice doing less, and notice that things tend to work out on their own—particularly when you don’t over-react. When things don’t naturally coalesce, notice the deeper source of the issue. Lessen the discordant voices and increase those that resonate with an organic harmony.



Below are the key dates for Mercury Retrograde in 2019:

February 10 Mercury enters Pisces
February 26 Mercury at maximum elongation (begins to slow down)

March 5 Mercury stations retrograde at 29° Pisces 39’
March 14 Mercury conjunct the sun (closest to Earth)
March 28 Mercury stations direct at 16° Pisces 06’

April 11 Mercury at maximum elongation (begins to speed up)
April 17 Mercury leaves Pisces

June 4 Mercury first enters Cancer
June 23 Mercury at maximum elongation (begins to slow down)

July 7 Mercury stations retrograde at 4° Leo 28’
July 21 Mercury conjunct the sun (closest to Earth)
July 31 Mercury stations direct at 23° Cancer 57’

August 9 Mercury at maximum elongation (begins to speed up)
August 11 Mercury finally leaves Cancer

October 3 Mercury enters Scorpio
October 19 Mercury at maximum elongation (begins to slow down)
October 31 Mercury stations retrograde at 27° Scorpio 38’

November 11 Mercury conjunct the sun (closest to Earth)
November 20 Mercury stations direct at 11° Scorpio 35’
November 28 Mercury at maximum elongation (begins to speed up)

December 9 Mercury leaves Scorpio


Gary P. Caton is a transdisciplinary astrologer who maintains an active sacred relationship with the living Sky as his temple. Initiated an astrologer by a magnificent dream in 1993, Gary is the author of Hermetica Triptycha: The Mercury Elemental Year, and host of the popular Hermetic Astrology Podcast. Find Gary online at DreamAstrologer.com

Published on Astrology.com



Astrological magic had its heyday in the medieval period, when kings and queens ruled the lands. Magic can be seen as metaphorical attempts to gain the favor of the sovereign, and many of the stipulations around when to practice magic are based around the idea of finding the ruler in a good mood, willing and able to help. Planets traversing one of their favorite places, known as dignities, symbolize just such rulers—those who are content in their special place and willing to marshal resources to the aid of those they favor.


After the sun moves into Aries on March 20, a period begins in which Jupiter, Saturn, and the sun are all in signs of their dignity. These three planets belong to what was called the diurnal sect. This means that they are fundamentally yang, or masculine, in nature, and so are seen to exert their greatest powers in the daytime. Together, these three happy and helpful rulers signify propitious opportunities for bold forceful action (sun in Aries), forward-looking and expansive enterprises (Jupiter in Sagittarius), and structured approaches toward long term objectives (Saturn in Capricorn). Thus, the period from March 20 until April 10—when Jupiter turns retrograde—represents a rare opportunity to combine and harness all three of these magical influences at once. This is especially true on Sunday, April 7 as the sun applies to trine Jupiter and the feminine/nocturnal planets Venus and the moon are also in their dignities, for a total of five out of seven classical planets in signs of their dignity.



Another condition for magical activity is when planets are conjunct bright stars. The stars give gifts of power and protection from beyond the spheres of the planets, a sign of eminence. On Friday, March 29 Venus is conjunct Fomalhaut, one of the four stars identified as “royal” by the Persians. Venus is already in Pisces, a sign of her dignity, and Friday also belongs to Venus, so we have three magical conditions converging. Early risers can capture the Venus hour, as well (the first hour after Sunrise always belongs to the planet of the day). All of this Venus magic is conducive to using personal charisma for bringing people and things together in a state of unity, harmony, and spiritual peace. However, since Venus is in a waning phase visually—becoming gradually lower and dimmer—it may be helpful to surrender or give away one gift or blessing in our lives in order to discover another.



On Wednesday, June 12 we have a conjunction of the star Sirius by the planet Mercury. Sirius is not only the brightest star in the sky but also one of fifteen Behenian stars considered to have special magical powers; Sirius was said to grant favor and also bring peace and accord. Since this is Mercury’s day, we can assume this peace is brokered through communication, negotiation, or exchange. This magic comes just in time and appears to be an opportunity to diffuse the very powerful opposition forming between Mars in Cancer and Saturn in Capricorn, with the moon in Libra offering additional assistance. Seek to broker peace through direct communication, if possible. If not, you can still call on the powers of Sirius and Mercury for help. Each of the Behenian stars has an accompanying herb, stone, and image or sigil used to access its powers. For Sirius, the herb is juniper and the stone is beryl. Combine these with the sigils for Sirius and Mercury along with incense and prayers for peace and harmony between powerful opposing forces.


Gary P. Caton is a transdisciplinary astrologer who maintains an active sacred relationship with the living Sky as his temple. Initiated an astrologer by a magnificent dream in 1993, Gary is the author of Hermetica Triptycha: The Mercury Elemental Year, and host of the popular Hermetic Astrology Podcast. Find Gary online at DreamAstrologer.com

Published on Astrology.com

Your Daily Cosmic Calendar for Tuesday, March 5


If you read yesterday’s calendar entry, you are aware that Messenger of the Gods Mercury is halting its direct motion in the heavens (10:21 a.m. at 30 degrees of Pisces) and beginning a retrograde cycle that lasts until March 28. Take a good look at the following themes associated with this crucial planet—communication, learning and primary education, words and language, transportation and travel plans, business and trade, messages and paperwork, health and medical concerns, the five senses, air and breathing, wind and temperature changes, as well as acts of apparent magic, sleight of hand, and theft. Don’t fall prey to marketing strategies and sales pitches that aim at hoodwinking you to sign an agreement that will end with regret.

Some ten hours earlier there is a 6-minute void lunar zone that starts at 12:06 a.m. and ends when the moon enters Pisces at 12:12 a.m. Be aware that the dark-of-the-moon monthly cycle that always occurs shortly before the new moon is building all of today since the next solar-lunar rendezvous occurs tomorrow. In addition, it is realistic to anticipate a possible rise in anxiety due to the sun forming an abrasive, 45-degree aspect with idiosyncratic and unconventional Uranus (12:40 p.m.), plus Uranus shifting from the end of Aries to the beginning of Taurus at 12:28 a.m. tomorrow.

Another source of either clarity or uncertainty is a fairly rare Vesta-Neptune convergence at 17 degrees of Pisces (5:10 p.m.). Safety and security matters, insurance coverage and investment planning, sisterhood and fellowship gatherings are definitely in the cosmic spotlight for everyone now and on Wednesday.

[Note to readers: All times are calculated as Pacific Standard Time. Be sure to adjust all times according to your own local time so the alignments noted above will be exact for your location.]

Copyright 2018 Mark Lerner & Great Bear Enterprises, Ltd. 


Good Tuesday Morning To All The Witches Gathered This Morn’! May The Goddess Bless You Today & Always!

Good Morning

Sorry, we are running late. I was looking at the obituaries to see if I was still alive this morning or not. Just kidding. There are several things I have to get done this morning. Most of the time when I have a lot of things to get done, I tell you to go over to the Commentary Gazette to view today’s posts. I got to thinking, why not bring the posts I put over there, over here. Genius, I know, ha! If you believe that I have some good water front property for sale, real cheap too. So to mix things up, we are going to do the posts I do over at the Commentary Gazette here this morning. Mix things up a bit, I know you get tired of the same old same old, so change for one day never hurt anything(I don’t think or at least don’t hope). So I am doing the posts I normally do over there, over here today.

I want to get two things done today. One I will, the other one will take a day or two, I am sure. First one, is to revise the front page of this site. The second is to start building the long awaited “Pagans In Action,” site. That will take a few days I know. For the next few days, I would ask that you have patience with us. You know what we are doing and it is for a good cause. Right now there are disasters all over the place and these people could use our help. So that site should be up and running now but unfortunate it isn’t. I can guarantee you it will be shortly.

Now I am off and running or else I won’t get anything I have put on the back burner for several weeks done. I hope you enjoy the posts today. It will be something different but it doesn’t hurt to break up our routine occasionally.

Have a very blessed Tuesday,

Love ya,

Lady A