Mercury - Messenger of the Gods
by Guru Rattana, Ph.D. - Issue #34, June 3, 2001
Mercury stands along with the Sun, Moon and Ascendant as a critical indicator of our character and personality. Mercury is the ruler of the sky when the Sun is in Gemini, between May 20 and June 20.
The astrological glyphs for the planets are composed of three symbols:
- The circle represents Spirit or pure consciousness
- The cross represents matter of life on Earth
- The semicircle represents the Soul and receptivity(1)
Each planet represents a unique combination of these three energies, which together make up the various aspects of our inner and outer realities.
Mercury is the only visible planet whose glyph incorporates all three symbols. The cross is below the circle, which is below the semicircle. Mercury's receptivity to Spirit is placed above matter so that he can use Spirit to interpret his life experiences. In his highest expression, Mercury represents the Soul using Spirit to express and guide his physical manifestation. As a mediator, Mercury shows us how our Soul can use pure universal consciousness to live our lives on planet Earth. Mercury shows us the true function of our mind.(2)
Mercury's glyph indicates that our mind receives impulses from two directions. (1) Information from our surrounding circumstances and earthly activities stimulate us to take action and interact with our environment. (2) The ability of our mind to tune into the cosmic universal mind gives us the power to channel inspirational and original concepts. When these two types of information work together, ideas can be realized into projects, and manifested in practical results.
The Messenger of the Gods
"Mercury is called the first of the celestial Gods, the God Hermes ... to which God is attributed the invention of and the first initiation of men into Magic ... Mercury is Budh, Wisdom, Enlightenment, or "reawakening" in the divine science." - H.P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine.(3)
Mercury is a god of many talents. Mercury bestows the gift of the healing arts. The god Mercury often carried the baton that signifies wisdom. The Caduceus is the emblem of the medical profession: the two snakes surrounding a pole with wings and a circle on the top signify the spine, consciousness and the rising of the Kundalini.
Mercury corresponds to the Hindu Monkey God - Hanuman, known for unrivaled wisdom and great feats. The Hindus also know him as Saram, "the divine watchman who 'watches over the golden flock of stars and solar rays'".(4) As the god of wisdom, Mercury is associated with the name Buddha, a title signifying someone who has been enlightened with divine wisdom (budhi). The Greeks called Mercury Hermes. This god of the "persuasive tongue" was god's messenger and a great orator and teacher.(5)
Mercury is the planet closest to the Sun. It is the hottest, quickest and smallest planet. One year (the time it takes to orbit the Sun) for Mercury is 88 Earth days. It is hard to observe Mercury because the Sun's brightness normally hides it from view.
Moving the fastest of any of the planets, Mercury symbolizes the concept of speed. Like Mercury, our mind out-races every other part of our being. It is Mercury that makes it possible to change, to forget, to destroy and to create instantaneously. Magic manifests in an instant. Through speed, Mercury, our mind and magic conceal from us their inner workings.
The mythological Hermes, also known as Mercury, was a god with wings on his feet. Heroic Mercury was smart, fast, useful and well-liked. The messenger of the gods, he was always in the know, and could travel at lightning speed. Well-regarded, Mercury was (and is) constantly in motion, always carrying out some job for the other gods.(6)
Mercury's mission is to explore both the known and the unknown. There are no limits to Mercury's curiosity. It is Mercury's nature to wander, to investigate, and even to be distracted. Mercury instinctually gathers information. Mercury is the seeker who roams all realms, "seeking more information to select, analyze, compare and compartmentalize". Mercury's investigation of possibilities is not necessarily rational or methodical.(7)
Mercury is equally tuned into the cosmic and the earthly realms. Mercury is part of both the universal mind and the collective consciousness. Mercury sees reality from the perspective "As above, so below." Mercury understands existence as a circular continuum between higher and lower levels of existence. Mercury operates from the premise that our inner and outer realties mirror each other. Mercury teaches us that we can understand ourselves and our relationship to everything else, by pursuing all types of experience and all levels of consciousness.(8)
Mercury moves from one activity to another, and from one idea to another, with impressive speed. So fast, in fact, that he is often perceived as a flighty dilettante. What is impressive is his perseverance in carrying out his endless exploration of both inner and outer life. His ability to connect all inner and outer experiences helps him function as the arbitrator of meaning and relevancy, where everything seems to fit into the cosmic jigsaw puzzle in one way or another.
The Magician and the Trickster
During Mercury's explorations he engages in all forms of communication. He exchanges and transfers information with and between groups, individuals and dimensions. In the process, he engages in analysis, performs co-ordinating functions and facilitates understanding, AND he performs magic! Magic usually refers to events or things that happen that we do not understand. Mercury is a master of exploring the hidden forces in the spiritual, natural and physical worlds. Mercury delights in investigating the magical realms of existence.
Mercury is known as the Magician and the Trickster. It is easy to see that these are two sides of the same coin. The hidden realms of existence seem to play tricks on us, confound us with unexpected information and events, and challenge our habitual perceptions. The unknown can also surprise us with unexpected gifts, open us up to new possibilities, and bestow us with seemingly supernatural powers. If we like the surprises, we call it magic. If we don't like the surprises we call it bad luck. Whether we like the results or not, the common thread is their uncanny, mysterious, supernatural and superhuman nature. The result is to jar us from the inertia of our routines, and move us out of the mundane. The purpose of these mysterious challenges is to catapult us into other dimensions of reality, and to awaken us to our Soul.(9)
Mercury teaches us that there really is a magical realm of existence. The more we tune into and follow our Soul, the more this magical realm is revealed. The irony is that our rational mind refutes and is confused by magic. However, there is method in this madness. It is when our rational mind gives up its need to understand and control that magic happens. Mercury's ultimate goal is for the head to surrender to the heart. In the end Mercury leads us to our heart.
I have a nightshirt with a big clown on it and the words, "Life's mysterious. Don't take it so serious." This is definitely a Mercury motto. It is certainly a dictum that gives me a detached perspective, when I go to bed and wake-up in the morning. Magical Mercury manifestations are always mysterious. Mercury is trying to teach us that if we would simply let go, quit trying to take charge and figure everything out, we could delight in the synchronous ways of the Divine and enjoy the ride. Mercury wants us to stop resisting and start embracing the magic in our lives.
Mercury is like an antenna. He receives information from all dimensions of reality, including signals from other planets. Mercury also transmits information, but he is not the source of the information. He is thus neutral, transparent and androgynous. Mercury conforms to his particular circumstances and environments. This is very valuable information in terms of dealing with our personal manifestation of Mercury - our mind. We can impact the information that our mind receives by our choices, intentions, environments, relationships and other conscious inputs, such as mantras, music we listen to and even food we eat.
Mercury takes a neutral position. All information is information for Mercury. It is interesting then that Mercury is said to be the protector of boundaries. How can Mercury have boundaries if he includes everything? Mercury's boundaries are not defined in terms of what he receives or withholds. Mercury's boundaries are defined in terms of his identity and personal integrity. Mercury's goal is to know his Soul. For Mercury, everything in life is an experiment. All his experiments and experiences serve to help him discover his Soul. Thus, what may seem arbitrary on the surface in fact serves a higher purpose, of uncovering the multi-faceted treasure of the Soul. Mercury is unified in his mission and all-inclusive in his strategy. Experimentation is his master tool.
Mercury is neutral for other points of view. Winning and losing are equally important, in Mercury's grand experiment to unleash the power of his Soul. Mercury, the Magician, must figure out what action to take at what time. His failures are due to "wrong action, wrong timing, or a lack of understanding". His successes are a "result of a correct action taken at the right time".(10) From the experimentation perspective, there are no moral absolutes and no obligations. Both fortune and misfortune are gifts from heaven, and grist for the mill of life.
Mercury rules the mind, the brain and the nervous system. Mercury also governs the the arms and the hands. Our arms and hands enable us to modify or control our physical environment. The arms and the hands are an extension of the heart center. The relationship between the mind and the heart are thus built into the symbology of Mercury. If we visualize a heart superimposed on the upper torso, the two bulges at the top represent the two hemispheres of the brain. They come together at the bottom point at the level of the heart chakra. Mercury thus incorporates the synthesis of the head and the heart. The higher mind transcends the inherent duality of the rational mind, and achieves neutrality when it serves as an expression of the heart.
Mercury rules the facilities that distinguish humans from the rest of the animal kingdom. Through the faculties of reason, our mind moves us beyond pure instinct. The human brain gives us the capacity to think, reason, plan, remember and use tools. Our mind gives us "the ability to know, to deduce and to use facts in an impartial and impersonal way".(11) Our ability to be conscious allows us to develop an awareness of, and a relationship with, universal truth. Mercury is the illuminator of human life. Through the intuitive mind, Mercury gives humans the capacity to be conscious conduits for energy and knowledge from higher realms.
Mercury's domain includes the lower rational mind, or the intellect, that processes information, and the nervous and neurological systems that make all forms of sensory input possible. The senses interact with the brain through the nervous system. We gather information through our five senses - sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell. These senses can be outwardly or inwardly directed. We use our senses as external antennae to gather information from our environment. We also use our senses internally to gather information from our body and soul, and to attune us to realities beyond the physical dimension.
On the personal level, Mercury is associated with all facets of communication. He also represents duality, or the ability to distinguish between polarities. On the soul level, Mercury expresses relatedness and harmony, achieved through the integration of opposites, or complementary energies and expressions. Mercury synthesizes cognition and wisdom. Mercury facilitates the rhythmic exchange of information and energies between the personality and the soul, between the earth plane and non-physical reality, and between the rational mind and the intuition.
KEY MERCURY CONCEPTS INCLUDE:
- Active intelligence
- Mind, logic and reason
- Educational and learning abilities
- Spoken and written communication, and
- Transmitter of the spiritual to the material(12)
Free Will and the Power to Choose
Mercury symbolizes two different aspects of the mind: (1) the neutral transmitter and (2) the power of the will. (Willpower is also indicated by the Sun).
- As a transmitter, the mind simply receives information. The mind itself is "neutral and is therefore capable of entertaining any thought, be it high or low or pertaining to any area of human experience or knowledge".(13) The human mind is part of the universal mind, and the morphogenic field of the planet. We pick up thoughts based on our programs, conditioning, cultural biases, soul make up, etc., and our level of consciousness. Yogi Bhajan used to tell us we do not think; we just think we think. This means we are not generating the thoughts. We are receiving them. One of the most basic human questions is what do we do with this information?
- Humans are given the faculties of consciousness and free will, so we can influence what we receive and how we react to these thoughts. Free will enables us to choose whether to act or not to act, and to determine the nature of our choices. Free will is associated with both the navel and the throat chakras. The third chakra gives us the power to take action, to commit and to make and break habits. The fifth chakra gives us the power to communicate without fear. Both are needed for focus, concentration and one pointedness. Both are needed to make choices, and to direct our life energies appropriately toward destruction or creation.
The magician in each of us is manifested through our power of free will. "We have the power to manipulate the four elements of matter (earth), feeling (water), mind (air), and Spirit (fire) as we choose. If we do not choose to use this divine power to consciously direct our thought-forms (and our actions), we will be directed by the unconscious thought-forms of our desire nature".(14)
The goal of the human journey, and all spiritual paths, is to move from unconsciousness to consciousness. Saturn teaches us that it is an arduous journey. Mercury teaches us that it can be fun, if we approach life from the perspectives of experimentation and detachment. Mercury teaches us not to take everything personally or seriously, so we can be entertained by the human experiment.
Attention: Training the Mind
Our quality of life, and indeed our destiny, are dependent upon our ability to use the power of our mind. Our talents remain dormant and unexpressed, unless or until we develop the capacity of our mind to serve our highest expression. Our mind provides us with "the intelligence, communicating ability, knowledge and understanding"(15) to learn, to be educated, and to develop the skills necessary to be a success in life. Since our mind creates our life and our destiny, if we are not in control of our mind, we are not in control of either our life or our destiny. How do we control our mind? The faculty of attention is our most valuable tool. With mental self-discipline we can choose what thoughts we give our attention.
Our mind is our personal antenna, which both transmits and receives information. Our mind has the capacity to tune into, amplify and send out any thought. The question is, what thoughts do we choose to receive, send out and focus on? The nature of our thoughts impacts our emotional state, determines our behavior and our actions, and attracts our life experiences. Because our thoughts determine our life, destiny and karma, it is of the utmost importance to wisely select the thoughts that we give our attention to.
The faculty of free will gives us the capacity to select the thoughts upon which we wish to dwell. We have all experienced negative outcomes, misunderstandings and failures, which have resulted from acting upon thoughts which would have been best flushed from our minds. Through the gifts of discrimination and free will, we can consider the probable outcome before we put a thought into action, or communicate it to another person.
We cannot eliminate negative thoughts. Even the Dali Lama admits that he gets angry many times a day. The difference between the Dali Lama and most of the rest of us, is that he processes his negative thoughts within his own mind, before they take over his consciousness and direct his actions.
Yogi Bhajan has told us we have 3-5 seconds to process and release negative thoughts before they create karma for us. I find this both scary and good news. It is scary, because it means that we have to be very alert and attentive to our thoughts, and deal almost instantaneously with the ones that we do not want to impact our lives. The good news is that we have the capacity to do so. Every spiritual path has refined techniques to train the mind to deal with the mind. These skills include the following:
- OBSERVATION: We must learn to observe ourselves and the thoughts that enter our mind.
- DISCRIMINATION: We must learn to discriminate between the thoughts that serve us and the thoughts that do not. Which thoughts are destructive, negative, impractical or superfluous? Which ones are constructive, positive, practical or relevant?
- SELECTION: We must "select only those thoughts which serve a useful and constructive purpose for further examination, work, exploration and planning".(16)
- The skill of ATTENTION is required for all of the above. The bottom line is where we put our attention.
Training the mind requires intention, discipline and devotion. The good news is that we can alter our reality, elevate ourselves, and consciously participate in our lives.
The Power of Neutral by Guru Rattana, Ph.D., is a distillation of the wisdom and experience she has gained from a lifetime of study and practice of Kundalini Yoga. This book should occupy a prime position on the bookshelf of everyone who wishes to deepen their knowledge and understanding of meditation and its role in spiritual transformation.
•Easily accessible for beginners
•Illuminating for those who want more
•Profound and penetrating for seasoned practitioners
Mercury in our Birth Chart
Our Mercury shows us how we can discover the magic and embrace the mystery in our lives.
Mercury is never more than 28° away from the Sun. This means that the sign of our Mercury is almost always the same as our Sun sign or the previous or following sign. When Mercury is in the same sign as our Sun, we embody more of the generalizations attributed to our Sun sign. This is even more the case when our Venus is in the same sign. On the other hand, when our Mercury and our Venus are in other signs, what and how we think (Mercury) and what we want and attract (Venus) are very different from our Sun energy.
Since Mercury itself has a neutral vibration, the nature of our individual Mercury is determined by its sign, the sign of our Sun and its relationship (aspects) to other planets. The sign of our Mercury represents how we think, and indicates the nature of our intellectual and inventive abilities and oratorical powers. Mercury gives us the intellectual capacity "to store knowledge, formulate opinions, and structure logic".(17) The nature (sign) of our Mercury and its interactions (aspects) with other planets are strong indicators of our ability to use words, learn foreign languages, communicate ideas and to persuade others.
Mercury is an objective extension of our personality. Our Mercury symbolizes our basic mental make up, our innate ability and manner of communication, our capacity to learn, and the way in which we articulate and correlate perceptions and ideas. Mercury influences our adaptability and dexterity. Mercury also relates to siblings, acquaintances, neighbors, peers, the powers of observation, how-to instruction, empirical thought, information, collaborative ability and logical thinking.(18)
The location of Mercury in our natal chart indicates where we seek to improve things and move forward through experimentation, inventions and other forms of progress. Our house placement of Mercury can also reveal areas in our life where we are never satisfied, and are always searching for new knowledge, avenues to investigate, and ideas to stimulate and awaken the mind to expanded dimensions of reality. Our Mercury can also indicate areas of restlessness, superficiality and inconsistencies.
An undeveloped or weak Mercury or mind is impulsive, indecisive, and unduly influenced by the ideas and opinions of others. A well-developed or strong Mercury or mind is capable of quick perception, clarity, concentration, discrimination, detachment and discipline.
Cause and Effect
Emotions are the energy that motivates us (e-motion). Emotions express our desire nature, a fuel which propels our urge to live, to achieve and to be fulfilled. When our emotions are out of control, they burn up our fuel, deplete us of life force, and steer us in undesirable and destructive directions. The mind is our steering wheel, which can guide our emotions and use this energy for constructive purposes.
Our mind is our focusing lens. It serves as the bridge between our Soul and our personality. Our intuition is our highest faculty. It delivers messages from our Soul, which is our personal link with the infinite. The mind accesses information from both our Soul and our physical-emotional being, and communicates between the two.
Mercury teaches us to use our minds to perceive causes, rather than to be at the effect of incoming information. When we are able to perceive the effect of our actions before taking them, we can consciously create our reality, instead of blindly reacting to information that is processed by subconscious programming. At the higher levels of awareness, we perceive the essence embodied in the form, be it human, other beings or circumstances. To achieve this level of consciousness, the mind must connect with the emotions as information, and not relate to them as tyrannical determinates of our behavior. Instead of being controlled by our desire nature, we integrate this energy into our response patterns, which gives power to our actions and communications.
Mercury's Dance with the Other Planets
How our Mercury interacts with the other planets affects our style, mental capabilities and communication skills.
- Mercury closely linked with Saturn results in a powerful mathematical mind. Einstein had Mercury and Saturn conjunct (in the same sign and degree.)
- Mercury linked with Venus makes one charming, facilitates graceful expression and gives one diplomatic skills.
- Mercury linked with Mars gives one an energetic and enterprising mind, which focuses on success and achievement. It can also result in aggressive attitudes and an argumentative and confrontational nature.
- Mercury linked with Jupiter gives one an expansive mind, which delights in teaching, traveling, spirituality and a positive promotional nature.
- When the Sun and Mercury are in the same sign, and within a few degrees of each other, one has a lot of willpower, is motivated to achieve, can inspire others through writing and speech, and has a penetrating vision and power of concentration. The person can also be egocentric, lack objectivity and be judgmental.(19)
- When Mercury is linked with Uranus, the mind easily receives information from the subtle dimensions of reality. There is a vastly expanded mental awareness through a telepathic relationship with other minds and the universal mind. "Great inventiveness and originality of thought, sometimes manifesting as genius, go with Mercury-Uranus contacts".
- Mercury lined with Neptune gives similar effects to Mercury-Uranus contacts. With Uranus, interests are more scientific and technological. With Neptune, the intuitive powers connect with the emotions. "There is a vivid sense of imagery and highly developed powers of visualization". This imaginative faculty is often expressed in the arts, music, drama, spirituality and philosophy.
- Mercury linked with Pluto extends the power of the mind deep into the subconscious. The person with the Mercury-Pluto connection can either be disturbed or clairvoyant. In either case he is capable of accessing the mysteries of life.(20)
Planets in the Elements
"The planets represent specific principles of energy exchange, between the individual and the universal supply of all energy. Each planet therefore, reveals not only a type of outgoing energy and an urge toward expression of a certain kind, but also a specific need for activity and fulfillment, that must be fed along a particular incoming wavelength".(21)
An in-depth understanding of ourselves and others is facilitated by examining the elements that dominate a birth chart. The elements - air, earth, fire and water - determine:
- how we are naturally attuned to different dimensions of experience
- how we can consciously tune into these different dimensions
- what energies we will use to connect with the different fields of life's activities.(22)
Mercury in the Elements
"Mercury symbolizes the urge to establish contact and true give-and-take communication with others".(23)
Mercury represents several basic needs:
- The need to EXPRESS ourselves, to communicate our thoughts to others and to express ourselves through manual skills
- The need to be UNDERSTOOD by other people who are attuned to ideas, or think, in a way similar to our own
- The need to LEARN by receiving information and ideas from outside ourselves.(24)
The element and sign of Mercury in our birth chart describes the mode of energy exchange, in both (1) the inflow of information through our perception, and (2) the outflow of information through our speech, body language and behavior. The element of our Mercury "indicates what specific energy and quality influences one's 'logic', and how one thinks and expresses thoughts along a certain vibratory wavelength".(25)
Mercury is right at home in the air signs (Gemini, Libra and Aquarius). Unfettered by the emotions of the water signs, the practical needs of the earth signs or the passion of the fire signs, Mercury in the air signs can operate with a high degree of lightness and freedom. The intellectual mind is free to be as conceptual and abstract as the person wants. Mercury in the air signs tunes the mind into universal awareness, which facilitates objectivity, impartiality and a clear vision of the truth. The air signs are the most adept at being the objective observer.
Mercury in the earth signs (Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn) focuses on practical needs and accepts ideas easier if they have practical applicability. The earth minds move slowly and deliberately, and don't change easily once they have made their decisions and taken their stands.
Mercury in the water signs (Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces) is strongly influenced by sub-conscious programming and dispositions, and deep emotional yearnings.(26) Communications are often unconsciously dictated by the emotions. The mind is clearly connected to the emotions.
Mercury in the fire signs (Aries, Leo and Sagittarius) indicates purposeful and positive thinking. Although Mercury in the fire signs can express itself decisively, it is not as objective and unattached as the air signs. This is because the fire signs are motivated by personal beliefs and hopes, and influenced by one's plans and aspirations in life.(27)
Understanding Each Other
The sign of Mercury ranks with the Sun sign in understanding ourselves and each other. The element of our Mercury indicates the type of energy behind our communications. Our ability to "hear" another person is directly influenced by the compatibility of our Mercury's. When our Mercury's are in the same element, we often understand each other, even if our communications are not clear or articulate. This is because we automatically tune into the consciousness, motivations and nuances of the other person's communications. The opposite is true in communications with people of different elements. We are not naturally attuned to the energy and vibration of their expressions. We either get frustrated, or have to use extra mental energy to figure out where they are coming from and what they are trying to say.
As a general rule, Mercury's in the same element (air, fire, water or earth) understand each other. Air and fire understand each other with a few exceptions. Air thinks fire is too passionate, and fire thinks air is too detached. Water and earth generally understand each other, although earth doesn't think that water is practical enough, and water thinks earth is too practical. Air and fire are more mental, and water and earth are more emotional. As a result, air and fire do not vibe with water and earth and vice versa.
Being aware of different patterns and modes of expression helps us understand each other better. However, conscious adaptation to others' communication frequencies requires effort and energy, because we are working in a realm that is foreign to our basic nature. It is useful in day to day interactions to be flexible in our interactions with others. However, in intimate and long term relationships, it is exhausting to be in situations where we are obliged to express ourselves in ways that are not natural to us.
It is important to know if our Sun and Mercury are in different signs. If they are in the same sign, what and how we think will be governed by the same energies. If they are in different signs, what and how we think will be governed by different energies.
WHAT we think about and give our attention to is determined by our will, which is indicated by our Sun as well as our Mercury. It is through our willpower that we guide and use our mind. Through the faculty of attention, our willful Sun determines the thoughts that our mind will entertain and dwell upon.
HOW we think, our manner of expression, and the nature of our thought process is determined by the sign and house position of Mercury, and by the nature of the planets that make the closest aspects to Mercury.
Mercury through the Signs
Mercury in each sign has a need to, and is naturally disposed to express, in a certain manner, is naturally attuned to certain energies, is preoccupied with certain areas of interest, and computes information in a certain way.
Aries and the First House
Mercury in Aries is one-pointed, self-willed and motivated by curiosity and the need for new experiences, and the urge for action. Undisciplined, he may jump from one activity to another and from one thought to another without bringing anything to completion. He can be distracted by new ideas and quickly lose interest in the old. He can create problems if he is too much in a hurry, and misunderstandings if he is too abrupt in his communications. Disciplined, he can use his mind to tune into pioneering ideas, and seed these ideas into the public consciousness. He will fight with a fixity of purpose for causes with which he identifies.
The Aries mind is motivated by personal ambition, and learns through direct action and experience. Keenly aware of the here and now, it is able to take advantage of opportunities as they present themselves. It uses its mental initiative to explore new avenues and achieve goals. The Aries mind sometimes limits itself by seeing things from only its own point of view. It can be argumentative and conceited. It can also accomplish much with its steadiness of purpose and daunting courage, to keep finding solutions to problems.(28)
The mission of the awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Aries, is to lead humanity into the light of consciousness. He is active in diffusing illusion in worldly life. He has a powerful will, which allows him to "pierce through the darkness of consolidated thought-forms, thus freeing the life force for the birthing of new ideas".(29)
Taurus and the Second House
Mercury in Taurus is tuned into, and responsive to, immediate physical sensations and gratification. The Taurus mind is steady, possessive and relentless. He examines values in order to find greater levels of pleasure, security, comfort and stability. Reflection is to feed with the "sensuous centers of consciousness".(30) The goal is to come up with solid plans that can fulfill practical needs. He is satisfied when his values are confirmed, and he feels assured of his ability to consistently get his needs met and enjoy his life.
The Taurean mind is steady, slow and practical, and thorough in carrying out its activities. It has a lot of common sense and skill in business and moneymaking activities. It communicates deliberately and methodically. It appreciates beauty and proportion. The Bull mind is known to be stubborn The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Taurus uses art, sexuality, sensuality, and business as channels to align with the Light.
Gemini and the Third House
Mercury in Gemini is acutely aware of immediate perceptions and interconnections. Mercury in Gemini is curious, changeable, friendly and talkative. He learns through impersonal exploration, and enjoys considering all possibilities and understanding different viewpoints. His inquisitive mind loves playing with ideas, uncovering puzzles to be solved, and observing paradoxes
The Gemini mind is alert, quick and agile, neutral and unstable. It constantly seeks information, lacks concentration and shifts from one point of interest to another. It has a facile reasoning ability and quick intuition. The continual flow of new ideas keeps the Gemini mind active and often agitated.
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Gemini has the "potential to harmonize and relate many streams of diverse thought into a vision and expression of harmonious unity".(31) He uses his inventiveness to serve all of humanity.
Cancer and the Fourth House
Mercury in Cancer is instinctively nurturing, empathetic and protective. Mercury in Cancer is reserved, moody, sensitive, self-protective and dominated by his feeling nature. Preoccupied with security and safety, he searches for ways to get his emotional and survival needs met. He has a deep sensitivity to what others are feeling, and communicates with others in a caring and kind manner. He is instinctively connected to others, and compassionately cares for their needs.
The Cancer mind is so influenced by the emotions and the subconscious, that if often does not even realize how past conditioning and programming control its thought processes. It is very difficult for a Cancer mind to be objective, and to step back and observe situations, without taking everything personally. It is ultra-sensitive, protective and defensive. The Cancer mind instinctively reacts to unconscious emotional stimuli. It works intuitively, not logically or analytically. The good news is that it can connect with the emotions, and is sensitive to its own feelings and those of others. Once it connects consciously with its emotions, it can project powerful healing energy, that it shares through empathy and compassion for others.
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Cancer communicates in a way that promotes a sense of emotional security. He is devoted to the sustained nurturing and nourishment of humanity and planet Earth. He is very resourceful, and has the gift of being able to bring ideas and people together. He is the mother of forms that births Spirit into physical reality.
Leo and the Fifth House
Mercury in Leo is radiant, vitally alive, enthusiastic and warm. His communications express the need for recognition, drama and passion. His mode is playful, dramatic and expressive. He likes to communicate the truth through art forms. Although he needs recognition and tends to try to impress others, his charm comes from the fact that he speaks from the heart to the heart of others. He has the capacity to awaken hearts and honor the nobility in everyone. He loves to be loved and will always love in return. His communications are motivated by a sincere enthusiasm for life, and an earnest desire to create, enjoy and love.
Illumined by the Sun, the Leo mind has penetrating powers of insight and will. It can express ideas with clarity, and influence public opinion in inspirational and creative ways. It generates enthusiasm and is a skillful teacher. It can be very independent and self-willed, and courageously defend its convictions.(32)
The creative powers of the awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Leo in are active and powerful. His thoughts are easily manifested into external expressions, that support and express individual identity and passion for life.
Virgo and the Sixth House
Mercury in Virgo is concerned with being helpful, and has a need to serve. He is a perfectionist, analyzes everything and is highly discriminating. His analytical and critical mode judges every idea and approach, in terms of its practical usefulness and its perfection. The Virgo mind can worry about the smallest details, and wants to discuss how to make things more perfect. He is more satisfied when ideas are practical and realistic, and when adjustments can be made that further his mission of service, and lead to higher levels of order. When he can understand the function or place of something, he is also pacified.
The Virgo mind is known for its exactness, efficiency, attention to details and mental discipline. It can analyze any situation and figure out the most efficient way of achieving goals. It likes to break things down into their component parts, and see how the parts are related to the whole. It can become overly critical and nitpicky.(33) Conversely, it is the hero when attention to detail determines the success of a project, especially research. It thrives in clean, orderly environments, and is concerned with heath and a good diet.
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Virgo has the ability to hold an idea in gestation and then, at the right time, give birth to this idea, which will nourish humanity.(34)
Libra and the Seventh House
Mercury in Libra seeks to harmonize conflicting interests and make sure everyone is happy. He is tactful in his communications, impartial in his opinions and balanced in his approach.
Mercury in Libra thinks in an aesthetic and balancing mode. His mind weighs everything, and tries to reduce conflicts and extremes. He has an ideal standard of measurement that can be realistic, unrealistic or visionary. From this abstract touchstone he helps adjust positions, in an attempt to achieve harmony and cooperation. He may seem to vacillate. This is due to unconscious adjustment to others' ideas, or accommodation to a point of view that seems most agreeable to everyone involved.(35) His communication style is friendly, graceful and agreeable. He learns by dancing with polarities and finding the balance point between them. Mercury in Libra is happy when there is cooperation and balance in his life, and he will work to achieve this in his relationships and life situations.
The Libra mind has an awareness of others, and finds it easy to communicate in a friendly and compassionate manner. It has a strong sense of fairness and justice, and a disciplined capacity to learn and study. Representing the neutral mind, it tunes into the impartial truth and is able to balance points of view. The Libra mind likes moderation and harmony, and dislikes extremes and excess.
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Libra fosters a humanitarian vision, and is concerned with right human relations. He is involved in creating communication networks and disseminating integrative ideas.
Scorpio and the Eighth House
Mercury in Scorpio penetrates to the core of every issue. He is intense, because his communications are fueled by deep emotional power. He can be identified by his secretive nature, controlled but intense passion and compulsive nature. Basically, he wants to get to the bottom of what doesn't work and why, so that he can find the path to the truth. He needs substance and searches for deep meaning. It is no wonder that power, sexuality, money, life and death occupy his mind, and that he considers superficialities a waste of time. He searches for opportunities and usually finds them. He has the ability to pierce through to the cause and bring things to completion, through death and rebirth of ideas and concrete plans. He gets turned on by piercing to the depths of issues. He has unbeatable mental endurance and skill, which allows him to overcome obstacles, and hold on until completion no matter what it takes.
The Scorpio mind is shrewd, penetrating, secretive and mysterious. It can also be tormented and depressed. It is a keen observer, and perceives the truth is most situations. It is capable of comprehending life's inner secrets and connecting with the subtle forces of the Universe. This is because it is connected with universal forces through the emotions. Its emotional intensity is often scary to the light-hearted, because it tolerates no nonsense, speaks the truth, and reveals deep meaning, insight and purpose.
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Scorpio has the mental power to transform his own psyche, and facilitate the reorientation of others' thought forms. His personal and contributory goal is elevation from the lower self to the higher mind. To access his great power, he must past many tests and commit to the Path of Light.(36)
Sagittarius and the Ninth House
Mercury in Sagittarius has a need to express ideals and search for spiritual meaning. He is often restless, inspired and positive. Visionary by nature and a seeker of universal truth, he has a built-in tendency to focus on the future, and be distracted from the here and now. He is frank, honest and sincere, but sometimes naïve. He is always searching for spiritual meaning, and can be restless and impatient with himself, others and life in general. He gets high from serving the highest truth, and inspiring others to do so as well.
Sagittarius is the sign of the higher mind where intuition transcends reason. The Sagittarian mind thrives on philosophy, spirituality, foreign travel and higher education. It seeks experiences and knowledge that expand and broaden its perspective, and further the achievement of its one-pointed goals. It can be dogmatic, get lost in dogmas and lose touch with the facts. It can also be impatient and impractical. It has an optimism and faith in life that inspires others.
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Sagittarius is a natural teacher, because he understands and is able to communicate the transcendent issues of life. His mission is to share his vision of the truth. He is more concerned with service than with his personal desires and his personal life.
Capricorn and the Tenth House
Mercury in Capricorn has a detached determination to accomplish his goals and get things done. He is recognized by his self-control, ambition, reserve and caution. He operates from an organizational and utilitarian mode. He instinctively searches for opportunities to achieve recognition, power and authority. He is concerned with effectiveness, discipline, limits, and following the rules that make things work more efficiently. He wants to get the job done correctly, and assumes the responsibility for making this happen. He pragmatically examines how things are organized, and tries to come up with practical solutions. He may be pessimistic, and feel weighted down by responsibilities that are both real and created in his head. He learns from hands-on experience and likes utilitarian information.
The Capricorn mind is disciplined, organized, ambitious and practical. It is interested in prestige, recognition and status. It is an efficient manager and executive, and thrives in an institutional setting. It is practical and unlikely to take risks. Its outlook is traditional and conservative.
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Capricorn is creatively and practically intelligent. He can use his mind as an extension of the universal mind, to create outer forms that manifest Spirit.
Aquarius and the Eleventh House
Mercury in Aquarius is detached and individualistic. He loves his freedom above all else. From his cosmic perch he experiences the unity of humanity, and seeks to achieve an ideal society. He searches out innovative possibilities, and then synthesizes ideas into revolutionary plans that serve humanity. He operates from a universal vision that perceives life holistically. He is resourceful and adept at networking and communicating with others. His power comes from perceiving a unified vision, and his ability in managing others to manifest it.
Connected to the universal mind, the Aquarian mind "is able to see and know things from a different space and time continuum".(37) It finds new applications, discovers new insights, and figures out how to use them to advance the evolution of humanity. Its ability to be detached and dispassionate allows it to honor everyone's position. The practical Aquarian mind is highly intuitive. It gives concrete expression to ideas and thoughts that it brings through from cosmic sources.(38)
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Aquarius communicates ideas and philosophies that unify humanity. Service to humanity is his focus. He seeks to unite people behind a common focus with shared ideals and principles. His powerful intuitive sense, that gives him the ability to perceive the dynamics of energy patterns in life situations,(39) makes him a powerful networker. He is inventive in areas of science and technology, and is interested in the application of his inventions to serve humanitarian purposes.
Pisces and the Twelfth House
Mercury in Pisces heals others through the power of his words. He is compassionate, idealistic, vulnerable, and has a direct experience of cosmic oneness. He is able to witness the world because it is not of this world, and is aware that he is a part of the universal mind. He is highly intuitive and receptive to cosmic and subconscious messages. His challenge is to be able to interpret these messages, in a way that helps him function decisively in the practical world. Lack of clarity and ambivalence are sometimes a cause of frustration. When he feels lost and in the fog, he may feel confused or depressed and turn to addictions for consolation. However, when he is aware that he lives beyond the veil, a place where most people spend their whole lives trying to get to, he can enjoy his ability to observe the human experience. His gifts are many. He is naturally compassionate and empathetic. He is authentically sympathetic and instinctively sensitive. He may be a visionary writer or poet, an unrivaled computer buff or champion chess player. The common thread is the ability to pull in the answers from the cosmic realms. His pleasure comes from experiencing the vastness of the Universe and cosmic truth.
The Piscean mind is subtly intuitive and perceptive. It receives information through psychic awareness, not through logical examination. It processes through the unconscious mind. It must learn how to bring information from the unconscious to the conscious mind. The dreamy Piscean mind is highly imaginative and visionary. It perceives the depth of reality through an internal movie screen. It has a telepathic rapport with others. Since the Piscean Mind is at the mercy of the emotions, unconscious psychological neuroses can cause mental confusion, and distort its perception of reality.(40) A deep connection to the unconscious mind, as well as the universal mind, facilitates deep meditation and mystical thinking. It can tap into deep levels of spiritual knowledge, and tune into the future through clairvoyant vision. The Pisces mind is most comfortable communicating empathy and compassion, and least comfortable working with regulated environments and intellectual data.
The awake or soul-centered person with Mercury in Pisces is a vehicle for the expression of divine love. The barriers, limitations and complications that exist in the typical rational mind do not exist for the Pisces mind, which has direct and continual access to the universal mind.
Kundalini Yoga - Meditation and Exercises
- The mind follows the breath. A most useful exercise is to practice changing your mind with your breath. Without making any adjustments to your breath, count the number of your breaths you take in one minute. Then slow your breath down and see if you can breathe four or less breaths per minute. More that 10 or 12 breaths per minutes activates a stress mode; four and under activates a meditative mind. Notice the difference in the activity of your mind.
- The mind is the observer. Close your eyes. Look inside until your are aware of a dark space. From this space observe your thoughts, your body and your actions. While the Sun is in Gemini, Libra or Aquarius, is a powerful time to cultivate the skill of the inner observer. Air signs may find this easy. Water signs may not even know what this means. It will just take you longer to perfect this skill.
- The mind is connected to the emotions. Feel the connection between your mind and your emotions. Here water signs will find this easier than air signs, who might find it hard to make the connection. The goal of this exercise is to investigate the fact that we are filled with so many emotions, most of them controlled by automatic responses from past programming. The emotions are attached to the mind. The gift of Kundalini Yoga is that we can train ourselves to use this emotional energy to become magnetic, and to heal ourselves and others. When you do yoga and meditate, feel the energy and sensations in your body. You will begin to feel the connection between the mind and the emotions. Through emotional sensitivity, we can ground the mind's ideas into artistic and creative expressions.
References and Footnotes
Alan Oken's Complete Astrology, Alan Oken, Bantam Books, New York, 1980. (Oken Astro)
Soul-Centered Astrology, Alan Oken, The Crossing Press, Freedom, CA, 1990, pp.192-199. (Oken)
Astrology, Psychology and the Four Elements, Stephen Arroyo, CRCS Publications, Davis, CA, 1975. (Arroyo)
The Astrologer's Manual, Landis Knight Green, CRCS Publications, Sebastopol, CA, 1975. (Green)
The Importance of Mercury in the Horoscope, Frances Sakoian and Louis S. Acker, 1970.
A New Look at Mercury Retrograde, Robert Wilkinson, Samuel Weiser, York Beach, Maine, 1997.
1. Wilkinson, p. xi
2. Wilkinson, p. xii
3. Oken-Soul, p. 272
4. Oken-Astrology, p. 189
5. Oken-Astrology, p. 189
6. Wilkinson, p. ix
7. Wilkinson, p. xii
8. Wilkinson, p. xiii
9. Wilkinson, p. xiv
10. Wilkinson, p. xv
11. Sakoian, p. 1
12. Oken-Astrology, p. 191
13. Sakoian, p. 4
14. Wilkinson, p. xiv
15. Sakoian, p. 4
16. Sakoian, p. 3
17. Oken-Soul, p. 279
18. Green, p. 135
19. Sakoian, p. 7 and 10
20. Sakoian, p. 8-9
21. Arroyo, p. 134
22. Arroyo, p. 134
23. Arroyo, p. 134
24. Arroyo, p. 134
25. Arroyo, p. 135
26. Arroyo, p. 135
27. Arroyo, p. 135
28. Sakoian, p. 15
29. Oken-Soul, p. 273
30. Wilkinson, p. 42
31. Oken-Soul, p. 274
32. Sakoian, p. 16-17
33. Sakoian, p. 21
34. Oken-Soul, p. 275
35. Wilkinson, p. 49
36. Oken-Soul, p. 276
37. Wilkinson, p. 53
38. Sakoian, p. 13
39. Oken-Soul, p. 277
40. Sakoian, p. 29.
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