Weekly Vibe Check- 4.17-4.23
Enter The Labyrinth of Memory Lane
Changin my style up this week. Let's hang for a bit and chat energies
I’m gonna level with y’all: If anyone is telling you exactly what’s going on right now with any authority, they’re either a much better astrologer/psychic/reader than I am, or they’re full of shit.
There are times when we’re able to be totally prepared, and the path ahead is clear - even when the path isn’t easy, it’s comforting to see where the challenges lie. Right now is not one of those times. We are in the stand mixer, being whisked around and beaten to hell energetically. Will we be a celebratory cake for a sweet child’s birthday? A mass-produced holiday fruitcake, doomed to stay wrapped in colorful cellophane, sitting on the shelf for eternity? Shall we end up irritating the bowels of some congressman with a pesky gluten intolerance he refuses to acknowledge? Who’s to say?
Finding energetic throughlines is Difficult Right Now
There’s so much happening simultaneously that threading together a set of concepts into a cutsie packaged pop culture analysis is a little gauche even for me. Our algorithms are intellectually gerrymandering us to the point where any metaphorical analysis I’d give for these energies would be so hyper specific to my FYP I'd sound like the crazed rantings of Charlie Day.
Dropping my overly complicated bits + wordplay attempts to show you some intellectual vulnerability with sincerity: Just because I can see the pattern doesn’t mean it’s not a tangled fucking knot right now. And it doesn’t mean I’ve got the answers to give you personally. Can you tell I’m a Virgo Moon?
Solar Eclipse and Mercury Retrograde
In regular degular Astro terms: We’ll have a Solar Eclipse this week, followed by Mercury stationing retrograde. The energetic lead-up to this will feel similarly to the wandering, meandering (and oft unceremoniously volatile) emotional waves as last week, but more quietly and individual to each of us as time passes. This Solar Eclipse is weird. It’s at the critical 29th Degree of Aries, ingressing Taurus during this New Moon. (For reference, New Moons beget Solar Eclipses, Full Moons beget Lunar Eclipses. It’s annoying if you’re new or generally forgetful)
Impact of Solar Eclipse
Unlike the last eclipse in Scorpio from October 2022, this upcoming eclipse will mostly be impacting the Southern Hemisphere, near Australia and the islands East of Indonesia. That doesn’t mean we won’t feel it in the US, but it does mean that those areas will feel the brunt of this eclipse. Jupiter is finally easing up on Chiron/Sun’s conjunction, and by this time next month, we’ll feel some much-needed relief in all this hectic confusion of self.
Mercury Retrogrades get a bad rap. Astronomically, Mercury appears to station retrograde - aka it looks like it’s moving backwards in the sky - about 3-4 times a year, but never actually moves in reverse during orbit. Mercury’s orbital speed as is incredibly fast compared to Earth’s. A year on Mercury is about 88 Earth days. So why does it look like it’s moving backward?
To get a sense of this phenomenon, imagine yourself as a passenger in a car on the highway, with another car passing you by at a similar speed. You may notice that their hubcaps appear to be moving backward, which is indeed a strange sight. Similarly, in astronomy, a planet's orbit around the sun is called an "epicycle," and due to the difference in rotation speeds, planets like Mercury can appear to be moving backward in the sky from our perspective on Earth, until we eventually catch up and overtake them.
Tech Issues: it’s the Sun’s fault! (probably)
Mercury’s retrogrades are infamous for tech issues, delays, hang-ups, and the ‘best laid plans’ failing. But what does this have to do with Astrology? Well, there are periods when Mercury’s epicycle set point shifts on the opposite side of the Sun to us. Mercury might be small, but as a planet, it is mighty - taking on the brunt of the Solar flares and electromagnetic waves the giant blob of hot mystery spews out. Those solar flares are documented by scientific organizations worldwide, and are most commonly known as the Schumann Resonance graphs.
Without Mercury taking the brunt of those electromagnetic shifts, they get a fastpass to move toward Earth’s atmosphere. When they interact, it causes technology issues, power outages, and general feelings of confusion and irritation. At the poles where Earth’s electromagnetic fields are the thinnest, we get a stunning display of Auroras when this happens. If the sun can cause massive power disruptions on cables, imagine what it can do to our physical bodies (and brains!).
Time to Tend to Our Blind Spots
All this to say, the Solar Eclipse happening just before Mercury stations retrograde in Taurus will have us in a liminal space here. Up until this point in the year, enormous energetic changes and opportunities have whizzed by us at lightning-fast speed. In a society that manufactures urgency, this has felt overwhelming in the most comforting way. Mercury Retrogrades are annoying because they challenge and trip up that charade. If we keep moving forward quickly enough, we won’t have to sit with our own thoughts, right? Gross. And wrong. We develop blind spots moving like this, and it’s time to tend to them.
Walking Through Your Personal Labyrinth
This eclipse will be akin to walking through your own personal labyrinth of self, so tread mindfully. Technology has given us access to reflections of ourselves that we’ve never experienced. Some so jarring and uncomfortable we outright reject them as mirror images of us. But alas, that random jabroni commenting on an outrage bait post is just as much you as Bill Nye. Personally, I find Mercury’s retrograde to be a gift for just this reason.
Crafting Identity As A Response to Our Environment
With Aries energy being themes of identity, self-perception, emotional volatility/reactivity, survival, childlike excitement and naivete, we’ll have a lot of emotional processing time on our hands for the next few weeks. Lucky us!
It's important to acknowledge that our environment has a profound impact on how we craft our personalities. We assimilate certain behaviors and beliefs to fit in and survive group dynamics. Other times, we exaggerate our authentic traits as a form of rebellion against a hostile environment. However, the fear of change and self-sabotage often arises when we're forced to confront the aspects of our identity that were shaped in accordance with, or in opposition to, our environment.
This week presents an opportunity to navigate the past and explore our individual identity shifts over time. I encourage you to read old journals, yearbooks, emails, and social media posts from your younger self. Listen to old mixtapes and playlists that capture a specific moment in time. Reintroduce yourself to previous versions of you, and approach them with respect and curiosity. You might be surprised at what you can learn from these interactions with a little introspection and fun.
But this is something you can’t fake. You can’t phone this practice in and collect points towards heaven. In fact, it backfires horrifically if you go through the motions without embodiment. You’ll become impatient, petulant, spiteful, disparaging, escalating a minor conflict into something volcanic. I’m doing all the right things why doesn’t this asshole just learn the lesson like I did!? Bitterness ensues, and the ripple effect outward is a phenomenal one.
As we engage in this process of introspection, it's important to be kind to ourselves and tend to the tender spots in our hearts. Especially when we fuck it up, because we will. We always do.
So do it with some earnestness and style, my love.
Journal Prompts for this week:
1) What aspects of your identity, self esteem and image have come from a place of rebellion as a reaction to a hostile environment?
2) What aspects of self have you cultivated out of a sense of conformity and self preservation? What types of self sabotage might you be inclined to avoid admitting a lie within your identity?
Extra credit: Comment and tell me a cringey memory of something you can't believe you ended up doing.