If we picture the orbits of the planets as concentric spheres around the sun, the orbit of Mercury is the first sphere through which the out-surging solar power radiates as it spreads throughout the solar system. Mercury thus represents the first planetary adaptation or specialization of solar power. It refracts, as it were, the one, homogeneous solar stream into two facets or rays. Thus, out of the unitary solar purpose, duality is born.
For human beings on Earth, mind and consciousness arise and develop on the basis of just such a duality, for in order to be aware, 'I' must perceive an 'other' who (or which) is 'not I.' Mercury symbolizes this primordial perception of duality, and once it occurs the function of Mercury is forever to try to link the two at the mental level.
Mercury's realm is the sphere of perceptions and ideas, of words which symbolize experience and minds which try to integrate experience into a meaningful whole. Thus Mercury symbolizes gathering data and information, knowing, formulating at the verbal level, communicating, listening, and rational decision-making.
Fleet as the quicksilver intellect which it symbolizes, fickle as an easily changeable mind, Mercury's functional activities can be misapplied. Negative applications of what Mercury represents include equivocating, rationalizing, intellectual superficiality, blabbing on and on, and disorganized eclecticism.
MERCURY IN PISCES
Keynote: The mind is impressionable and intuitive.
Symbol: A child listens to the sound of the sea in a shell.
Although Mercury is in detriment in Pisces, this position does not impair intelligence. It merely suggests that the mind resists the rule of pure logic and refuses to be pinned down to hard facts. There are, on the other hand, soft facts pertaining to the realms of instinct and intuition which are no less significant realities in the scheme of existence.
Mercury is also in its fall in this sign, showing that ultimately criticism and analysis must be dissolved in compassion, thereby making love rather than intellect the guiding principle of life. The attitude characteristic of this placement is expressed in the following anonymous quatrain:
Reason has moons, but moons not hers
Lie mirrored on the sea,
Confounding her astronomers,
But oh, delighting me.
Whimsical and poetic, Mercurial Pisceans are likely to succeed in fields which allow them to make use of their creative imagination and love of fantasy. Sometimes they are aware of circumstances and events without knowing how or why. Ideas filter through the pores of their minds, coming unbidden for obscure reasons. Pisceans may also have psychic or mediumistic talents.
Members of this sign are well suited to be writers, musicians, actors, or entertainers. Because of their mental permeability, they excel in any capacity in which the mind serves as a sounding board for the transmission of subtle impulses and impressions. Literally, their conduct depends upon the quality of the energies they conduct through their sensitive nervous systems. Often they appear to be absentminded and indecisive simply because they are functioning as instruments for, rather than originators of, the thoughts that waft them hither and yon.
If the Sun is in Aquarius and Mercury is in Pisces, vision and imagination can be turned to widescale humanitarian enterprises. These people, although basically rational, may have unusual ideas which are in advance of conventional modes of thinking, and they are fascinated by the unsolved mysteries of science and what they may imply.
When the Sun and Mercury are both in Pisces, the mind is more inspired, but it is also edged with a certain flightiness unless the ability to concentrate is shown elsewhere in the chart. These susceptible souls often suffer emotionally as a result of their thin-skinned impressionability. Frequently misunderstood, they may withdraw into themselves and become reclusive. Yet they are generally kind, helpful, and eager to be of assistance to people in trouble. They need protection because, due to their willingness to listen to any tale of woe, they are easily duped.
The Sun in Aries and Mercury in Pisces endow a person with less vulnerability to deception and a more positive disposition. They are better adapted to translate intuitive ideas into action and to give overt expression to the impulses which arise out of the unconscious.
According to tradition, Pisces is the sign of illusion and limitation. These two concepts go together because most of man's limitations stem from his illusions. Reality knows no bounds; it is only the world of phenomenal appearances which is hemmed in by limitations. The only reason these illusions have so much potency is because they have some connection, however tenuous, with the reality they veil.
Metaphysically, the significance of the astrological dictum that Mercury is in its detriment and also in its fall in Pisces, lies in the fact that the spiritually evolved person can begin to transcend the ratiocinations of the concrete mind and start to function on the plane of pure reason and intuition. They grasp the implications of the ancient Oriental maxim, "The mind is the slayer of the real," and its corollary, "Slay thou the slayer."
Throughout the zodiac, the mind has functioned as a bridge to reality. Once traversed, however, this bridge can be left behind. The Piscean appreciates the need for logic just as a traveler is grateful for the bridge which spans a river, but they have no need to pick the bridge up and carry it along with them after it has served its purpose.
They are now ready to ascend into the highlands of consciousness from which the light of the spirit may be more directly apprehended. They cease to need intermediaries because they become the thing they seek. Love was the means and love the goal, and now the two are one.
Sun in Aquarius / Mercury in Pisces
The rather brittle Aquarian traits are softened and the humanitarian qualities of Pisces are warmed and sympathetically expressed. The creative and very original imagination must find specific areas of expression, perhaps through some unusual, off-beat hobby or career. There is much more flexibility of mind and opinion, and usually the emotional level is greatly heightened, perhaps with less ability to be detached from the feelings. Aquarian perversity and unpredictability are less evident, since Mercury in Pisces contributes considerable sensitivity towards other people's feelings.
Sun in Pisces / Mercury in Pisces
The subject may become rather scatter-brained, surrounded by confusion and muddle. However, here is also great kindness and sympathy, and a wonderful imagination which must be channeled and constructively used. When under stress, there may be a tendency to deceive the self and others by falling back on negative escapism. Parents whose children have this placing must gently but very firmly encourage truthfulness. Any indication of creative potential should be encouraged, as self-expression though the arts (especially photography) is desirable.
Sun in Aries / Mercury in Pisces
Here Arian assertiveness is softened, and selfishness is less likely to be a problem (but consider the Venus sign in this respect). Arian decisiveness will not be quite so strong and forgetfulness, especially over small matters, can cause great annoyance to the active energetic Arian. This is most likely when one is being unduly hasty. The increased intuition of the placing is a help, particularly when assessing competitors' actions and reactions to situations. The emotional level of Aries is increased, but the subject is less likely to be easily aroused by anger.
Astrology, the Divine Science