Mercury in Retrograde has long been known as a time to not travel, sign contracts, begin new jobs; a period in which technology goes haywire and car accidents are more frequent. It's become so well known in the zeitgeist, even kids are using it as an excuse to not turn in their homework. But Mercury in Retrograde doesn't HAVE to be this period of stress, misunderstandings, and mishap.
What is Mercury in Retrograde, exactly? It's the period when the planet Mercury seems to slow, and then start moving backward, an optical trick due to the different speeds of planets on their orbital path from the vantage point of Earth. Mercury is the Roman god of Communication (otherwise known as the Greek god, Hermes). His domain also extends to travel, technology, legal contracts, new ventures, and business. This means when his planet goes retrograde, none of those activities can be counted on.
Many bemoan the three weeks of Retrograde that happen throughout the year… yet I always try to remember that to everything there is a season. Without Winter, there cannot be Spring. Many of us focus on growing, evolving, learning, creating… and that is life. But there must also be periods of rest, integration, reflection, and restoration. When we push ourselves and push ourselves, what happens? We get sick. The illness is a way for our bodies to force us to rest. If we try to fight it, we feel awful. But if we listen and allow ourselves the time to sleep, drink nourishing fluids, read books, and watch reruns of Downton Abby on PBS, we soon recover and can pick up our normal pace again, refreshed and recharged.
So instead of thinking of Mercury Retrograde as a jinx, let's think of it as a gift from the Universe. Three to four times a year we get to pause, rest, recuperate, reflect, integrate, and prepare. These are the energetic season to look at where we are on our path, and how we got here, release and bring to a close those relationships or ideas that no longer serve us, and to ask ourselves… what do I want? What makes me happy? What doesn't? How have I grown? This isn't a time for action. This isn't a time for communication, except for perhaps with ourselves. This isn't a time for connections or starting new ventures. And that's where we get off on the wrong foot. We live in a society that expects us to keep on trucking. When we try to fight being sick, we end up feeling worse; likewise, when we fight Mercury in Retrograde, we end up feeling cursed. We aren't SUPPOSED to be traveling or signing contracts, or going to work, or using technology. We aren't supposed to be sending energy outward. We're supposed to turn inward.
When utilized properly, Mercury in Retrograde can be a beautiful time of year full of realizations and remembrances. That being said, we live in the fast-paced society we live in, and try as we might, we still have to go to work, drive our cars, and talk to our families. With that in mind, we've curated a small crystal set to help offset the more stressful stereotypes during these three weeks and to help us get into the spirit of the Retrograde season.
Black Tourmaline assists in letting go of fear and anxiety often associated with Mercury in Retrograde, as it absorbs, reflects, and grounds any chaotic energy that does come our way. Black Tourmaline helps us feel safe and protected; while it's piezoelectric qualities and EMF absorbing qualities may help keep our technology from acting up.
Emerald in Matrix helps smooth communication and ensures our well-laid plans aren't scuttled. It’s a remarkable support stone for the workplace. Many of us often feel fuzzy, or lack focus during this period and Emerald increases mental acuity, strengthens memory, and helps us avoid miscommunication. It's particularly known for assistance in areas of legal affairs and contracts, which is immensely valuable considering that's one of the number one things we're told to avoid during Retrograde season.
Amazonite is a crystal of harmony, with a calming and soothing energy. A Throat Chakra crystal, Amazonite helps us to speak with clarity and grace, fostering clear communication with others and to allow us to express ourselves with the sincerity that comes from the heart.
Indigo Gabbro (Mystical Merlinite) helps us get to the heart of the Retrograde season. Nicknamed the "wise soul," Gabbro is a stone of reflection and integration, allowing us to dig deep into our innermost self, bringing to the surface memories and old patterns that we've kept hidden away, and providing us with insight into how they've contributed to where we are now. Gabbro is a crystal of balance, allowing our darkest aspects to be intertwined with our highest self.
Smoky Quartz strength lies in its ability to absorb and transmute significant amounts of negative energy and release it into the Earth to be neutralized naturally. Instead of just surfacing negative energies and emotional blockages, this crystal gently dissolves these energies as it encounters them, allowing positive frequencies to take their place, filtering out bad moods, fear, stress, anger, and unspoken resentment that drain our energies and unable to move forward. Smoky Quartz lifts depression and fatigue and teaches one how to let go of what is no longer necessary for growth.