Maya del Mar's Daykeeper Journal: Astrology, Consciousness and Transformation

September 7
Chiron direct

September 14
Mercury retrograde

S E P T E M B E R   2 0 0 2   R E T R O G R A D E   W A T C H

Retrograde Watch

Two planets change direction in September. Mercury turns retrograde on September 14, and Chiron turns direct on September 7.

All of the planets except Sun and Moon alternate direct and retrograde motion (from earth’s perspective). This alternation is a natural rhythm of life—like day and night, or rest and work.

When it is moving in direct motion, a planet expresses its activity directly and spontaneously in the world. It helps us to take risks and move ahead with new endeavors. After a time of being out there, it’s time to check in, to reconnect with self.

The planet then turns retrograde, and gives us the opportunity to assimilate the direct experiences. We can contemplate what we’ve been doing, or what the world has been doing, and re-organize our psyches in the light of those experiences.

When the planet turns direct again, it moves out to express a renewed central self, a more authentic central self. The whole retrogradation process is like coming home to ourselves, getting the latest instructions, and incorporating them into a new strategy, which we put into action when the planet turns direct.

Mercury is the most important retrograde, because Mercury is the messenger itself. It represents the nervous system, perception, all communication and all communication channels. Anything that moves depends on Mercury. All of our connections are guided by Mercury.

It’s certainly appropriate that Mercury needs to retrograde frequently to keep up-to-date with the changing self.

When Mercury is retrograde, this inner dialog is happening with each of us, as our psyches rework the past. Thus we are on our own wave length, instead of easily tuning in to someone else’s. And miscommunication is common.

This is particularly true when Mercury is in an air sign, as it is now. In fact, all of our retrogrades in 2002 have been in air signs. Air signs are about connecting, making relationships, sharing stimulating ideas, and group involvement in social action.
Our special question now is, "What is the meaning of relationships in my life?"

The focus is on organizing and managing relationships, rather than the feelings involved. We can pay close attention now to our patterns of associating with others, rather than just letting our habits run us. What do we put into, and what do we get out of, relationships? Old problems can arise, and we have the chance now to look at them more objectively, and to think through them in terms of who we are, and what our needs are, rather than just trying to get along.

Mercury will be retrograde for three weeks. This is a good time to clarify goals and priorities, to plan, and to research things one plans to purchase.

Retrograde is not a good time to set new things in motion, to make important purchases, or to sign contracts. Misunderstandings are likely.

After Mercury turns direct, on October 6, we can move ahead with our plans, promotions, and purchases. Everything will move much more smoothly and easily then. Including our relationships.

Chiron is often called the Wounded Healer. It shifts us drastically into a new situation, often illness, where we are forced to heal through re-aligning ourselves. Its action is unpredictable. When direct, it develops situations that show us what needs healing. When traveling retrograde, that inner work of healing can more easily occur.

Chiron turned retrograde on April 17. At that time two issues dominated the news. One was the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which had reached a head. There were many large demonstrations in the U.S. for both Israelis and for Palestinians, as well as rallies for Peace and Justice. Colin Powell went over to Ramallah to talk with Pres. Arafat, and the meeting was called "catastrophic."

The other issue was the sexual scandals in the Catholic Church. Cardinal Bernard Law of Boston was ordered deposed, and Catholic bishops met with the Pope in Rome to discuss the problem.

When Chiron turns direct on September 7, we can look for new action to develop with those issues, as well as many others which were prominent then.

I personally got sick then. During the retrograde time I have been working with my health, which is now much improved—thanks to good help—including that of our health and healing columnist, Joseph Odom.
Chiron is now traveling in Capricorn, which refers to institutions of all kinds. Institutional healing is the main subject. Chiron is direct for the rest of the year.