Tuesday, 11 May 2010

About Mercury

Now that Mercury is turning direct, I think it would be a good idea to have a look at this sometimes misunderstood planet. The tendency of a part of modern astrology to treat planets as if they are comfortable in every sign and just functioning differently, has brought some confusion. Besides the fact that Mercury is the planet of communication and of the gathering and exchange of information, the key, I think, to understanding Mercury is to remember that, traditionally, it is considered a cold and dry planet.
Which means that Mercury is not a passionate or an emotional planet. Passion and emotion may be two wonderful things to have, but you'd better keep your Mercury away from them. You could have a strong Sun or Jupiter for passion or a strong Moon or Venus for emotion. But NOT Mercury. Mercury is the planet of reason and it is best placed in air or earth signs. Mercury rules Gemini and Virgo and is also exalted in Virgo. The other air and earth signs may not be the absolutely best signs for Mercury, but at least in those signs Mercury is functioning reasonably well. Not so in fire and water signs.
This has nothing to do about being clever. But when you have a fiery Mercury, you get passionate about ideas and theories and you rarely deign to test them. You know they are true, because you feel deep inside that they are true. But that's not enough. Whenever someone questions your beliefs, you become defensive. You don't want to test them, because they mean so much to you, so how could you survive without them, once they are proven wrong? This is very often the case with astrologers as well. We become so convinced that some astrological concepts are perfect that no matter how many times they fail to give the anticipated results, we never question them, because they feel perfect to us, they work for us. But the sad fact is that if a technique fails to provide us with any accuracy, we must throw it away and not find excuses. That's the reason that I've always supported scientific research in astrology and hated phrases like: "I use the equal house system because it works" or " Use the Regiomantanus system in horary and the Placidus system in natal astrology, because they work". What kind of an argument is that, especially when everybody uses it to support their preferred house system?
Mercury in water cannot think clearly and objectively because emotion steps in and clouds the thinking process. A Mercury in Pisces employer, for example, may offer a promotion to someone because they are nice people or fun to hang around with, despite the obvious fact that they lack the necessary skills. Emotion prevents Mercury from exhibiting its true nature. These people may be very intuitive but very often they can't put two and two together and this can be dangerous in situations that demand clarity of thought.
Mercury is in detriment in the two Jupiter-ruled signs, Sagittarius and Pisces. Jupiter represents the kind of knowledge that comes from within, that demands a leap of faith, despite the fact that there is no external proof available. That's why it is considered the planet of religion and philosophy. That is of course extremely valuable, but equally valuable is COMMON SENSE.


  1. when you have a fiery Mercury, you get passionate about ideas and theories

    Mercury in water cannot think clearly and objectively because emotion steps in and clouds the thinking process.

    WONDER FUL CONCEPT..............

  2. Following the words of Mercury in Piscies, i have a book of astrology that have developed some theories around dignities and debelities, and it says that mercury in Scorpio is exalted. How can this be judging by the strong bias to the intense fixed emotion proposed by the sign influence in the planet?

  3. The "problem" with Mercury is that according to the ancient sources it both rules and is exalted in Virgo. It does seem kind of bizarre, yes, but the moderns have treated this as a mistake and have tried to find another exaltation sign for Mercury. They have suggested Aquarius, which is really not a bad sign for Mercury (it is an air sign after all and Mercury rules the air triplicity by night) but Scorpio, this is the first time I hear of it. What is the rationale behind it? To my mind, Mercury dislikes fire and water, that is he dislikes passion and emotion. Logic and objectivity cannot survive in such environments.

  4. I find this book i have quite interesting because it seems to put some logical in their justifications! But this is just me!
    First of all, by this book, it defines gemini as the primary ruler and virgo as the base ruler of mercury. Must be something like Diurnal and Nocturnal rulers of mercury. Aquarius is pilgrim in mercury.
    As exaltation, like i said, defines scorpio and will translate the justification for you/all the best i can:

    "The higher is the necessity for survival more the intelligere ability shines in the plenitude of its splendor, thus guaranteeing, just not the pratical talent, but also the necessary moral strenght to face death and ressurection.The nocturnal ruler of Pluto connects the inteligence the most secret sources of life, gifting them with the ability of the almost diabolical intuition.Fighting tenacity without visibility, but most of the times unassailable(Mars), ability for agressive estrategic, and power of release it self and give the best of it even in the most dangerous situation. It´s a inteligence that don´t surrenders, or grants nothing to tenderness or altruism(Venus exile and Jupiter fall), and recover the strenght through humor or searching new creative ways. It has a taste to intelectual/mental adventures through a path never taken before"

    The book refers that its bad qualities are mental sadism, rebellious provocation and astuteness.

  5. It seems to me that this is a description for Mercury in Scorpio and a bit far-fetched to tell you the truth. I don't see any explanation why Mercury is better suited here than in Aquarius or in any other sign. As I see it, Mercury is all about srticulating your thoughts in such a way that they make sense to other people and especially about "cold" objectivity. No emotion, just logic. Scorpio simply doesn't fit the bill.

  6. I tend to agree with you in the first place.
    So, if for instance you happen to have a Mercury/Pluto trine aspect in your birth chart, and following the same theory, isn´t this a not so good influence even if you have mercury in gemini and the so called harmonious aspect?
    I ask this because in this case it seems that the good flowing of opposite and diferent "energies" are well suited by the most "especialists". Isn´t this a paradox?

  7. As I understand it, a planet in rulership is able to function according to its nature and if it is also accidentally dignified it will be able to withstand pressure from adverse aspects. Usually, it's not the nature of the aspect that is important, but the planets involved and whether they are friends or not either by nature or by sign placement.
    If you have Mercury in Virgo (a better placement than Mercury in Gemini)then you will be able to handle any aspect from any planet more successfully, in the sense that you will be much more equipped to integrate in a healthy way the other planet's influence. Pluto, for example, almost invariably leads you to believe that life is a jungle and you have to be extremely cautious because anything, absolutely anything in the outside world can be a threat to your survival. So, with Pluto aspecting this dignified Mercury, it's much more likely to produce a cautious and deep thinker, able to go beyond appearances. But if this Mercury were in Sagittarius for example, then there is greater danger of misinterpreting what is going on around you and you may find yourself in a state of mental terror, always thinking that other people have secret motives. You may tend to be much more suspicious than it's required, which may lead to paranoia, never trusting anyone.

  8. Well thank you for this!

    I have only one final question about a birth´s chart or even in synastry aspect that always been curious that is Sun conjunct Pluto. Could you give me your personal interpretation about this aspect in the two themes if you please. Thank you!!!

  9. I have written about Pluto more than once in this blog. You can search it and find out my personal opinion on the matter. Here's one link: