Mercury enters Aquarius on 8 January 2021 and you may notice a subtle shift in your thinking and communication style. Mercury remains in Aquarius until 16 March, turning retrograde between 30 January and 21 February.
Being an air sign Mercury functions well in Aquarius. The mind is likely to be sharp and astute with flashes of inspiration, and there will be a tendency to look at things in a very objective, scientific, and perhaps even detached manner.
The detachment of this placement can be frustrating for those of us who value the subjective viewpoint and who look at the world through lenses of empathy and intuition, especially those whose natal charts feature the planet Neptune or the Piscean archetype quite strongly. For these people Mercury in Aquarius can feel somewhat cold.
A hallmark of this placement is systems thinking, an ability to view the world in a holistic way. This is perhaps partly why Mercury in Aquarius can come across as a little detached and cold, in stark contrast to its opposite sign Leo with its focus on individuality and self-expression.
I encountered an example of this contrast just recently, observing a discussion between two parents on the risks and benefits of childhood vaccination. One parent pointed out that there were several dangers that although rare can have serious consequences for the health of a small child. The other argued that such thinking was selfish because, while it protected the individual child from risk, it endangered the health of a large group of the child’s peers.
So, while Mercury in Aquarius is very focused on the evolution and development of human society, and can be quite innovative and visionary in this regard, it can lack compassion for individual pain and drama, seeing it as insignificant beside the needs of the collective.
Both social media and the internet more generally are a powerful manifestation of this transit. Unlike Gemini with its clear-cut exchange of information and ideas, or Libra with its one-on-one partner-based cooperation, Mercury in Aquarius communicates via networks and develops ideas through collaboration between large groups, often across vast distances and between peoples of great diversity and differences of opinion.
To Mercury in Aquarius even the inevitable conflict that occurs within groups can be creative, just as long as the individuals are able to respect one another’s differences. Thus, despite its focus on the group, this placement celebrates the unique characteristics that make us who we are and resists attempts by society to make us conform to a particular standard or belief, recognising that it is diversity that makes for a healthy social ecology.
When Mercury moved into Aquarius in my progressed chart I became fascinated by participatory learning models where the traditional hierarchy of teacher and student is transcended in favour of a collaborative learning process. This approach is to education is intrinsic to the design of the Know Yourself Online Astrology Course.
Uranus, the ruler of Aquarius, is sometimes referred to as the ‘higher octave’ of Mercury because it takes our thinking to another level. With Mercury in Aquarius we think laterally, outside of the square, and we are more open to experimenting with unusual idea or solutions.
How will Mercury in Aquarius affect you?
Mercury in Aquarius will resonate most strongly for those who have Mercury placed in Aquarius or the 11th House natally. You may also feel it if you have strong natal aspects between Mercury and Uranus. Those with planets or points in Uranus will feel this energy most strongly as Mercury transits these natal placements. The area of your life that will be most affected depends on which house Mercury is transiting through in your chart.
If you have Mercury in Aquarius natally, how do you find it affects you style of thinking and communicating? How do you plan to make the most of the visionary way of thinking that may arise in you during this transit? I love hearing how you’re experiencing the transits. Share your thoughts in the comments below.