Shifty Visions

Shifty Visions

The dark river we’ve followed up to this point begins to meander wildly, the sense of a clear path eroding.  Then the water begins to bioluminesce, glowing strong and strange in a rainbow of eerie neon colors.  Maybe its algae.  Soon enough the river is full of figures dripping color and arguing with each other in slow motion.  Maybe those mushrooms were poisonous.

The Moon wanes over a pivotal week. The action begins with Mercury’s retrograde station on Tuesday, American election day.  The Messenger’s about face gets things moving the in the confusing, non-linear direction it will continue in for the next several weeks.  Meanwhile, Neptune has slowed to a standstill, and will station direct on Saturday night.  The other blue planet floods the week, calling strange visions out of the ambient  mindsea.  Needless to say, this will not help with the clarity problem Mercury is pointing toward.

The week has a rhythm.  The Moon strides across Leo from Monday through Wednesday, stoking conflicting visions and unsteady enthusiasms. The Moon enters Virgo on Wednesday night and spends Thursday and Friday in Virgo, revealing a variety of Merc-retro related problems and prompting some frustrating attempts to correct them.  Saturday and Sunday share the Libra Moon.  Saturday starts off unstable but the Moon’s conjunction to Venus and Neptune’s station make a fine recipe for respite.

Yet all the while, Luna heads relentlessly for the Sun.  She’ll find him next Tuesday and the perfection of their union will cast a shadow across the Earth- the solar eclipse in Scorpio, the first of several.

 Mercury Stations Retrograde: Uncertain Skies

“Who gave us the sponge to wipe away the entire horizon?”

-The Madman, Fredrich Nietzsche

Mercury wobbles toward a retrograde station in Sagittarius on Tuesday, the 6th.  This retrograde encloses most of November, with the direct station not coming until the 26th. Although it starts in Sagittarius, by the 14th the messenger will re-enter the Scorpion’s burrow.

The Sagittarian section of Mercury’s retrowalk will be characterized with an excruciating slowness, clarity emerging like it does on a canvas, one brush stroke at a time.  The visionary and vague qualities are both exaggerated by backward Mercury’s square with a stationing Neptune.  The canvas is clogged with competing images, each concealing the authentic one trying to emerge.  False images emerge and then fall away like old, peeling paint, revealing another, which itself peels away.  And so on.

All of this will be writ large in the US’s elections, which includes not only the Presidential race, but scores of other important seats.  Many of these contests will go undecided for weeks, with accusations and illusions in abundance.

The effect of the Mercury retrograde on the political macrocosmos is important, for obvious reasons, but the confusion above should highlight, not mask, the confusion below.  November is a month of powerful personal changes as well as obvious political ones.  There is a tendency here to try to escape ambivalence, to decide the form of things one way or another.  These premature choices will lead to abortive forms which cannot endure what they were intended for.  If huge choices loom, give the answers the time they require in order to emerge.  Retrograde Mercury’s point-counterpoint dialectic is not inconvenient- it is necessary.  Important choices can and should take time.  Don’t play your hand unless it’s forced. When the images stabilize, you’ll know kind of cards you’re holding.



Neptune Stations Direct: An Uncanny Glow

After months of ebb, the hallucinatory waters of the mindsea begin to rise again.  Strange, primitive, bio- luminous forms appear beneath the surface.  The deeps are more accessible than ever, their challenges as alien as they have ever been. 

Neptune’s direct station,  which brings an end to the big blue planet’s 5 month retrograde, waits for us on Saturday night.  Neptune’s direct station sees the imagination quietly surge and the sphere get back to the business of eroding divisions, inspiring visions and giving free reign to delirium.

Neptune’s direct station is meaningful in and of itself, but it also bears directly on this Mercury retrograde, as the two maintain a square for the next week and a half. Projected images reflect off the surface of living waves.  On them are shifting futures, huge issues reflected in tiny lives.


Mercury retrograde’s shifting visions and Neptune’s strangely reflective waves suggest a psychedelic expanse.  This is so, but we’ll experience this glowing brew pumped through the tight system of pipes, sewers and tunnels within the consensual reality-structure.   This is no swim in dream oceans, but a matter of hallucinogenic hydraulics, dynamic liquids moving solid systems.  This week and next are a curious mixture of wild imagination and very concrete realities.




Note:  I was quite wrong about Mercury’s retrograde station on Tuesday signifying a hard fought, contested election.  There were plenty of the typical difficulties at the polls and a host of technical errors, but none of this led to a contested election result.

In many ways, the Mercury station on election day seem to highlight the American electoral process itself as the subject of criticism, rather the specific contest being held.

Update:  I have been informed that as of 11/11/12, there are still 6 races being contested.  Perhaps I should apologize for being wrong about being wrong.

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Horoscopes are not a real chart reading by an experienced astrologer. They are fun and can be reasonably accurate, however. In addition to referring to your Sun sign, read from your Ascendant and Moon if you know them. If you don’t, find out! I’m a long time fan of the free chart generation software at
Aries: The Ram
Taurus: The Bull
Gemini: The Twins
Cancer: The Crab
Leo: The Lion
Virgo: The Virgin
Libra: The Scales
Scorpio: The Scorpion
Sagittarius: The Centaur
Capricorn: The Goat
Aquarius: The Waterbearer
Pisces: The Fish
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Austin Coppock is a writer, esotericist and astrologer based in Ashland, OR. He published paperback Almanacs from 2011-15 but began posting his prognostications online last year, referring to his collection of weekly, monthly, yearly essays and daily delineations as “The Online Almanac”. This work is made possible by his supporters on Patreon. Austin was President of the non-profit organization “Association for Young Astrologers” from 2012-2016. His most recent book is “36 Faces: The History, Astrology and Magic of the Decans”, published by Three Hands Press.


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Shifty Visions

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