Mercury Retrograde, February 16th, 2020; Thoughts or Feelings

solar system eraoflightdotcomMercury retrograde 2020 begins on February 16, at 12° Pisces and ends on March 9, at 28° Aquarius. Mercury retrograde is generally associated with communication and technology breakdowns, nervous tension, travel delays, and lost items.

Mercury retrograde February 2020 has an especially challenging influence on communications because it is square the Moon. An inner conflict between your thoughts and feelings may lead to anxiety, indecision, moodiness, and parochialism.

More detail about Mercury retrograde February 2020 follows. Information about Mercury retrograde in the natal chart and in transit can be found at the end of this article.

Mercury Retrograde February 2020

The Mercury retrograde phase is just one part of the retrograde cycle. The whole cycle includes Mercury going direct, retrograde, and direct again over the same degrees, or the retrograde zone (28° Aquarius to 12° Pisces). The two direct phases are known as shadow periods. The three phases of Mercury retrograde February 2020:

  1. February 2 to 16 – The first shadow phase from Mercury entering the retrograde zone until Mercury stationary retrograde (28° Aquarius to 12° Pisces).
  2. February 16 to March 9 – The retrograde phase lasts from Mercury stationary retrograde until the Mercury direction station (12° Pisces to 28° Aquarius).
  3. March 9 to 29 – The second shadow phase lasts from Mercury stationary direct until Mercury leaving the retrograde zone (28° Aquarius to 12° Pisces).

Mercury Enters Retrograde Zone

Mercury enters the retrograde zone on February 2 at 28 ♒ 12 [see chart]. During the first shadow period, you will get an idea of the thinking, communication or transport issues that will arise during the retrograde phase.

Mercury Stationary Retrograde

Mercury retrograde on February 16 at 12 ♓ 53 makes a significant and challenging aspect to the Moon. There are no major fixed stars conjunct Mercury but the Moon is on a powerful star in the Heart of the Scorpion.

Moon square Mercury creates a high degree of tension between your heart and mind, or an internal debate between your thoughts and feelings. Anything you feel strongly about or have an opinion on is subject to your questioning, indecisiveness, and variability of emotions or interest.

Mercury retrograde February 2020 will help you openly and honestly share your feelings but the message received can be less thoughtful and caring than intended. Moodiness and parochialism can lead to disagreements that harm your intimate relationships. You may not care too much what others think of you but your partner most likely will.

This will be an ongoing issue with Mercury stationing direct quincunx the Moon, and Mercury leaving the retrograde zone again square the Moon. Friends may come and go but family is forever. Your parochial views on family may reach beyond the clan and extend even to nationalism.

The best use of this tense energy is hard mental work. You can take a critical look at both sides as you perfect your ideas. The key to avoiding arguments and strained relationships during Mercury retrograde 2020 is to stay calm and think before speaking.

The Moon conjunct fixed star Antares at 10 ♐ 02 is helpful in this situation because it gives a broad-minded and philosophical outlook. It gives great power, honor and wealth, and is favorable for business and domestic matters. However, these benefits may not prove lasting, and there is the danger of violence, sickness, drowning or assassination. [1]

Mercury Stationary Direct

Mercury stations direct on March 9 at 28 ♒ 12 and another challenging aspect to the Moon carries on the Mercury retrograde theme of conflicting feelings and moodiness.

Moon quincunx Mercury still causes internal conflict between your thoughts and feelings but it also gives the ability to find a balance. While it may still be hard to put your thoughts into words, there will be moments of emotional stability and calmness in which you can see things more clearly. Take advantage of this mental clarity to find compromises and reach firm decisions.

The Mercury direct phase gives you a chance to pause and reflect before saying something you may come to regret. New information will become available and you will be able to look at things from a different perspective. This will help you make up for any mistakes during the retrograde phase and resolve any relationship problems.

Finally, Mercury leaves the retrograde zone on March 29 at 12 ♓ 53  [see chart]. Just as with Mercury retrograde, the Mercury is square the Moon, this time from the opposite degree at 12 ♊ 41.

The Moon conjunct fixed star Aldebaran at 10 ♊ 03 is similar to Antares with the Moon but more favorable. It is good for domestic, public and religious matters, business, honor, and credit. [1]

For more detail on how Mercury retrograde February 2020 aspects your birth chart, see Mercury Transits.

Mercury Retrograde 2020 Dates

  • February 16 to March 9 – 28° Aquarius to 12° Pisces
  • June 18 to July 12 – 5° to 14° Cancer
  • October 13 to November 3 – 26° Libra to 11° Scorpio

Mercury Retrograde Meaning

Transiting Mercury retrograde is a regular cycle occurring three or four times a year for about 24 days. While this is more frequent than any other planet, Mercury is still only retrograde 19% of the time. This is far less than Jupiter outwards, but more than Venus and Mars.

The Mercury retrograde phase is just one part of the retrograde cycle. The whole cycle includes Mercury going direct, retrograde, and direct again over the same degrees, or the retrograde zone. The two direct phases are called the shadow periods. The illustration below shows the apparent retrograde motion of Mercury as seen from Earth.

Mercury retrograde brings communication and technology breakdowns, nervous anxiety, travel delays, and lost items. There is a feel of a difficult Mercury–Saturn aspect to Mercury retrograde.

You can also expect to dwell on things, reminisce about the past, or unexpectedly meet up with people from your past. While the retrograde period might be good for flicking through old photo albums, it is generally considered more of a nuisance than a benefit.

Mercury retrograde can play havoc with your thoughts, communications, travels, and electronics. Take extra care with your words and try not to react too quickly in any arguments or if provoked. Take some time out if you start to feel overwhelmed by the hectic pace. Double-check all of your emails and posts on Facebook before hitting the send button.

Business negotiations will be in a state of flux during Mercury retrograde so avoid signing contracts. Some important details will not yet be available, and others may be unreliable or dishonest. If going on a road trip then make sure you get your car serviced beforehand.

The riskiest times for decision-making, negotiations, communication, and transport are the few days either side of the exact retrograde and direct stations. However, care should still be taken during the retrograde period.

Natal Mercury Retrograde

Natal Mercury retrograde suggests there may have been a problem with how you thought and communicated in an earlier life. Perhaps you gave someone bad advice that had critical repercussions. Perhaps you were prone to making costly mistakes. Maybe you wrote slanderous material about someone in a book or newspaper, or verbally teased and abused people.

Whatever the circumstances of the previous significant incarnation, you come into this life with those bad memories etched in your soul. You probably don’t recognize them as memories but as déjà vu or unexplained guilt. A repeating theme of challenging events related to your past is likely, especially when young.

The aim of retrograde Mercury is to perfect those areas of thought and communication which once let you down. As your communication skills improve with experience, your karmic debt will be repaid and you can get off the roundabout.

Natal Mercury retrograde can cause learning difficulties, especially with reading, writing, and comprehension. You could be a shy, quiet person whose thoughts have turned in. Hesitant to speak up for yourself, you may miss out on many opportunities in life.

This difficulty in expressing yourself can make you feel awkward in company, and lead to low self-esteem. You may experience teasing or verbal abuse, be nagged and criticized, or fall victim to slander and lies. Contracts may also cause problems and like so many things, lead to complications further down the track.

Mercury retrograde only lasts for about three weeks so Mercury is going to turn direct at some stage in your progressed chart (where one day equals one year). After a couple of years, you will notice that your communication style improves and you can express yourself more freely.

However, the opposite can also occur and someone with Mercury direct in their natal chart may experience progressed Mercury retrograde later in life. I experienced this from age 13 to 37 and it was very profound. I even stopped reading books.

If you have Mercury retrograde in your natal or progressed chart then you can expect to make more rapid progress during Mercury in retrograde motion. Use this ephemeris to see if Mercury changes direction in your progressed chart.

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