What Happens When Mercury Retrograde and Eclipse Season Arrive at the Same Time?

What Happens When Mercury Retrograde and Eclipse Season Arrive at the Same Time?


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While we’re no fans of astrological fearmongering, there are a few cosmic events that no one’s excited to see on the calendar. The biggest repeat offender is Mercury retrograde. When the messenger buzzes by the earth’s orbit thrice yearly, it has been known to wreak havoc on our communications and data. Then there are eclipses, which happen four to six times a year at new and full moons. These lunar events have earned themselves a shadowy reputation for dredging up buried issues and showing us things we just can’t unsee.

So, what happens when Mercury retrograde and “eclipse season” arrive at the same time, as they do this April? Chaos might ensue, so we’re waving the caution flag to help you get prepared.

a solar eclipse, a crystal, a butterfly, and eclipse glasses
Getty + Design by Leah Romero

A little bit about the timing of these events: On April 1, Mercury turned retrograde in combative Aries for three weeks. (Sadly, that’s not an April Fool’s Day prank). Until April 25, misunderstandings will flare, mobile devices will jam, people from your past will reappear and data could wind up in the wrong hands.

Then, on April 8, a total solar eclipse will darken the sky when it arrives with a potent new supermoon in feisty, fiery Aries. There’s a strong risk of people acting like selfish, entitled, and even raging narcissists that day. (We don’t recommend this look.)

Before you run off to hide in a remote outback this April, let us tell you the potential upsides—and there’s always an upside—of these transits.

The gift of Mercury retrograde (or any planetary retrograde, for that matter) is that it puts a positive emphasis on all “re” activities: reuniting, revising, reupping, refreshing. April could be an amazing month for rediscovering favorite parts of yourself that you tucked away or for reconnecting to activities that once brought joy and pleasure to your personal life.

Let’s be honest, sometimes we need a moment to just hit the brakes and do some recon work to make sure everything’s up to code. That’s the beauty of Mercury retrograde—as long as you’re willing to embrace the slower pace.

Eclipses are also important checkpoints. They push us to look in places where we might otherwise look away. This April, one opportunity might temporarily dry up, motivating you to pursue something with even greater potential. A relationship could be “eclipsed out” of your life, giving you the space to grieve, but also to get real about the fact that it wasn’t exactly satisfying you anyway. Since the April 8 new moon is a total eclipse, it’s likely that anything that ends in April will require a clean (and total) break.

Endings can be hard, we know. But solar eclipses can also expedite beginnings, like the one on April 8, that occurs with a galvanizing new moon. Since it’s also a supermoon, you could be collecting a bigger bounty than you expected. Here’s hoping! And since Mercury retrogrades are known for bringing back situations from the past, you might get a second chance with something you thought was done for good.

Also fortunate? April’s Mercury retrograde and eclipse are both in Aries—the very first sign of the zodiac. This brings a strong possibility that something unexpectedly fresh and new will be delivered before the month is through.

Should you seize the day and strike while the iron’s hot? Well, that’s where things can get wonky. While eclipses accelerate opportunities and force us to act fast, it’s never wise to rush in during Mercury retrograde. You might feel like you’re driving with one foot on the gas (eclipse!) and the other riding the brakes (Mercury retrograde…) this April.

If all you have is a wing and a prayer, you should probably take a pass on any exciting-but-WTF options dangled before you. But if the surprises April delivers are in alignment with what you’ve been working toward manifesting, move ahead with eyes wide open. Even then, faith might be required, since you probably won’t be able to see the full scope of things right away.

If that’s all too much for your risk-tolerance level, we can’t say we blame you. But sometimes contracts have to be signed and changes have to be made during inopportune astrological moments. In cases like these, try to put as many guardrails in place for yourself as you can. And who knows? As normalized as astrology is these days, anyone you’re doing business with might be fine to wait until Mercury turns direct on April 25 before sealing any deals. As we’ve learned many times, it’s worth an ask!


Get your complete forecast in The AstroTwins 2024 Horoscope, available in paperback or PDF. ELLE readers get 20 percent off with the checkout code ELLE24.

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