Mercury starts off the New Year with one of its retrograde cycles, the first of four in 2016. He stations direct at 1°02° Aquarius and will backtrack to 14°55 Capricorn, finally stationing direct on 25th January 2016. The shadow period of this retrograde cycle which involves the signs and degrees covered by the retrograde period and to which many astrologers also give importance started on 19th December 2015 and will end on 14th February 2016.
This is the last time that Mercury will retrograde in the Air signs until the year 2022 since Mercury retrograde cycles have a recurrent elemental basis which usually repeats itself every 6-7 years in different degrees of the same element-type.
This retrograde starts off in the very early degrees of Aquarius, an Air sign and will quickly retrograde into Capricorn which is an Earth sign.
When Mercury is in the Earth signs he encourages us to contemplate questions such as “What are the tangible results of my life?” “What plan or strategy can I put into practice?”
With Mercury retrograde in Capricorn security matters and practical necessities are forefront. We are encouraged to rethink our priorities whilst leaving all decision-making to the time after the planet is once more direct. Mercury in Capricorn is very down-to-earth and direct in his thinking and talking.
Capricorn rules the 10th house in traditional astrology which involves our public status, our aims and ambitions as well as authority and/or parental figures in our lives.
Mercury will be making some interesting contacts during its retrograde period, so if degrees in your chart are interested by the following aspects expect the effects to cover a couple of days before and after each of the following dates:
On the 5th of January, the day Mercury stations retrograde in Aquarius, he will make a square aspect to Mars in Scorpio (1°02’). You, or people you meet, could be touchy and irritable or you may have to defend your ideas in some way, another effect could be a mishap whilst moving (falling during a walk, cutting your finger whilst you’re preparing a meal or even a bump with your car whilst travelling) so be careful!
Several aspects occur on the 14th of January making this a good day for taking ourselves much less seriously since Mercury R could act out his trickster role today as the Sun conjoins him in Capricorn (23°44’) and he trines both North Node and Jupiter in Virgo (23°29’ and 23°09’ respectively) and makes a semi-square to Neptune in Pisces. Don’t believe everything you think!
On the 20th of January Mercury R will square Uranus (16°50) speeding up our daily life to the extent that it could become rather nerve-wracking for the less flexible of us and let’s remember that Mercury R is already transiting a rather serious, no-nonsense sign too!
Finally, on the 22nd of January Mercury R will conjoin Pluto (15°47’) indicating intense mental activity with people wanting to get to the bottom of things, so you could find yourself and your actions being queried by others if your workings aren’t crystal clear at this moment in time or you might want to put your view over in a strong way which could meet opposition from others or you may be the one being overpowered if you meet this aspect in its projected form.