Friday, April 22, 2011

The Myth of Mercury Retrograde

Gary's note: Here's another perspective on Mercury Retrograde. I'm posting this because I'm not buying into the idea that there are certain things we should not do when it's in effect (i.e, enter into contracts, buy a computer, etc.). It's got too much of the same stuff The Secret is made of. My example: If I wait to buy a specific car three days from now, when Mercury Retrograde is over, my chances of having problems with it are greatly reduced...that something  has magically changed.

Feared, disparaged, and despised, the Mercury Retrograde is rapidly becoming the most maligned phenomenon in popular astrology. Without justification, this event stands among infamous superstitions such as stepping on cracks, breaking mirrors, and opening umbrellas indoors. The purveyors of astrological fear have managed to give the world a reason for all its woes, but who can blame us for accepting a ready-made scapegoat? Now broken cars, miscommunications, and botched performances are no longer the fault of human error—rather, they’re just a few of the many ills that belong to the irresponsible antics of Mercury.

This kind of thinking takes astrology back 100 years, when the planets were seen as evil forces that bore ominous warnings.

Many practitioners still echo the voice of the old soothsayers. They proclaim Mercury, the planet of communication, is moving backward, and then warn us not to sign or buy anything during this retrograde. It’s likely we’ve heard that warning more than once—which is why we can’t get rid of the gnawing sense of caution every time we hear about the Mercury Retrograde.

When using astrology as a tool to guide our lives, it’s important to recognize the issue of self-fulfilling prophecy, that unconscious desire to ensure we get the outcome we believe we will. In other words, if we proclaim that since Mercury is going to be moving retrograde, bad things will happen, then there’s a good chance they indeed will.

Why Retrograde?

All planets (with the exception of the luminaries: the Sun and Moon) go into what’s called a “retrograde phase.” Some go retrograde every year, while others may only do so every few years. Retrograde means that from the Earth’s viewpoint, the planet in question visually appears to pause and then begins to move backward through its normal path across the sky. (Of course, the planets don’t actually change direction.)

When a planet goes retrograde, the issues it reflects as it travels back through the sign (or signs) tend to have you revisiting the experiences you had when it moved across that point in its original forward movement. You see, prior to moving backward, a planet must first pass through the retrograde territory in direct motion. Because it will return to this point during the retrograde phase, this is called the “pre-retrograde zone,” as it allows you to take note of issues that may emerge before the actual retrograde. After the planet has gone through its retrograde, it then moves forward, traversing once again the same course it did while traveling backward. This is the “post-retrograde zone,” and since it occurs afterward, it often brings closure and clarity to those issues experienced throughout the earlier phases.

A New Perspective on Mercury Retrograde

In truth, Mercury Retrogrades allow us to tune in more closely to our intuition, heighten our senses, and gain a larger overview of our lives. Rarely has there been a Mercury Retrograde that didn’t assist in uncovering mistakes that would have otherwise gone unnoticed. This opportunity for reappraisal may account for why so many successful businesses were launched during the retrograde cycle.

Let’s try thinking of the Mercury Retrograde period as a big contemplation cycle. Contemplation is how we connect to our higher mind—and disconnect from our daily distractions—in order to look at life from a broader perspective. Certainly decisions made while in such a state are bound to be supported. It’s a time of review, and an opportunity to enhance decisions that we’ve already made. What other time of our lives do we get not just two, but three chances to make something work? This is the best time to look at our relationships and speak what’s on our mind. Mercury embraces communication—it encourages it. It’s time to take charge of our life and learn to live it fearlessly. Let’s move to make the Mercury Retrograde our comrade in wisdom:

Change those old beliefs that keep us in fear. 

8 Reasons to Welcome the Next Mercury Retrograde

I’ve made the following list of ideas to help you navigate and even look forward to Mercury Retrograde. So, the next time you hear that a retrograde is coming, return here and review the list.

More than 50 % of the top 100 Fortune 500 businesses were started under the Mercury Retrograde. Imagine what you could do:

  1. Now, thoughts that have been lost to you can come back renewed and ready for consideration.
  2. Finally, you can slow your obsessive mind down and start feeling your life.
  3. You can now meet with (insert name of boss, friend, co-worker, sibling, parent, child, or what have you) and clear up that misunderstanding.
  4. You can abandon your routine in favor of spontaneity.
  5. This is a great time to re-examine that important decision.
  6. Your mind is less attached to things—now you can release that “bad” habit without fear.
  7. It’s time to give attention to your car, that toothache, or new computer.
  8. And if you’re tired of the same boring vacations, Mercury Retrograde is ready to show you a good time!
Remember, this could be a time of celebration and grandeur, or of fear and isolation…you get to choose. (Hint: One choice is a lot more fun than the other!)

 Mark S. Husson is a man with a lifelong interest in the inner workings of the mind. Mark's astrological classes and workshops enabled psychotherapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, and lay persons to become aware of astrology's ability to empower themselves and their clients. Visit:

Saturday, April 02, 2011

What does a 21st century priestess really want in a man?

A guest blog by Sherri L. McClendon, MA OM

Gary's note: Sherri is a Priestess through Anyaa's Priestess Process, a dear friend, and one of our excellent marketing gurus. Find out more about Sherri at the bottom of this post.

What does a 21st century priestess really want in a man?

First things first, I’d really like to turn in my penis.

I like men, I really do. I enjoy the company of men, and I’ve even been known to adore them on occasion. But there’s a problem. After plenty of life experience, I just don’t trust them as a species.

Yes, I agree with our friend Gary that women as well as men must “heal their own masculine and feminine essences before they can come together in sacred union.” Yes, I’m responsible for balancing and integrating the masculine aspects of my own psyche, hence the need to give up my “penis.” Given what passes for masculinity at the dawn of the 21st century, please forgive me if I have yet to come to full acceptance of this task. Forgive me if I am still working on forgiveness.

The reality is I frequently encounter wounded warriors, an archetype which no longer holds attraction for me.  I’d like men to dress and heal their own wounds, thank you very much, not wait for me to staunch the bleeding of their hearts, or pull marrow from my soul to make them feel whole again. Neither am I the Morrigan to whom the wounded warrior may look to be carried from the field of battle into shadow, nor am I the spoils of war to be pillaged for another’s gain. These are not my roles; please do not ask me to bear this mantle. Women are wounded, too, and some of us are angry.

Back in the heyday of ancient Rome, the eyes of the world were turned toward Capitoline Hill where the goddess Moneta and her sister Minerva, enjoyed equal status to the male godhead, Saturn. Given Moneta’s association with the flow of money and protection of resources, Minerva’s mastery of sustainability through ensuring the cycles of the year, and Saturn’s gift to the two of substance, it seemed a balanced act.

But the Romans had other ideas. The warriors of the day, bent on competition, accumulation, and power over others, dug a secret tunnel to the mint beneath the Moneta temple, where they removed the money created in order to fuel their war machine. Each New Year, they’d visit the temple womb of Minerva and “nail” the ending of the old year above the entry. Thus, they originated the version of the conquering warrior hero that is the dominant figure in Western culture’s coming of age stories for men. Women, it may be noted, do not have a coming of age tradition, and though we are taught the hero’s journey, men are not reciprocally given women’s stories. Instead, our society is left with men who exhibit Saturn’s over-reliance on structures, who cling to old thought forms of authoritarianism and righteous discipline in lieu of a better way of relating with their world. In order to receive Saturn’s gift of substance, many women have found that we must hand over our power to become chattels rather than partners, relegated to trophies, subordinates, or priestess/princess whores. In each of these cases, women have been deliberately disenfranchised to ensure the power of the masculine over and above the feminine. We became punished by our own consent to play by Saturn’s rules.

Those times, thank Goddess, are on the wane. Men and women today call forth a path of service in the evolution of the species on Earth as a living, embodied, divine expression of Spirit. When I read Chaucer’s “Wife of Bath’s Tale,” from the Canterbury Tales, or its modern interpretation in Mel Gibson’s portrayal in “What Women Want,” I understand the need for communication between the masculine and feminine, reconciling across time, space and dimension.

So, what does a 21st century priestess really want in a man? After all, the concept of the new masculine is integrating, grounded, loving. Priestesses everywhere are opening to its emergence.

First, the New Masculine male must be secure enough in his wholeness to hold space for divine feminine evolution.  This means his king, warrior, lover, and magician archetypes reconcile. His path of service through his work and actions aligns heart and mind, and exemplifies purposefulness. Almost certainly, his travel into shadow enables his return to the light. As a partner, he is a loving, present co-creator and able, ready, and willing to step into sacred union with the feminine both within and without.

Essentially, as a 21st century priestess, I seek to be fully partnered, not husbanded; self-determining, not stewarded; mated, not married. Gratefully, I mother a beautiful divine masculine child, now 5, and hope he may evolve consciously, fully into manhood. I celebrate the emergence of the Integral Warrior, the brave transformation for the future.  Finally, I celebrate a world where strong women don’t have to grow penises – or emasculate men - in order to survive the prevailing winds of change.  It’s a new Earth, and a new day. So be it.

Sherri L. McLendon, M.A., O.M., of Professional Moneta™, is known as Your Moneta Marketing Mentor™ and creatrix of the Moneta Movement™. She is a long-time advocate for the evolution of Gary Stamper’s work with the New Masculine and the Integral Warrior process. As a divine feminine marketing coach, she uses co-creative communication strategies, to assist spiritual, holistic and conscious entrepreneurs in the realization of their highest and best potentials. Find out more at, or check out the done-for-you copywriting and publicity services at McLendon Bylines at