One day a friend was lying to me. Upset, I decided to look through my binder of horoscopes and find the common element in the charts of everyone I thought had lying tendencies. I was going to find the “mark of a liar.” I learned something very important that day.
We all lie.
I learned that we all lie differently. The bigger lesson, the lesson of astrology that I proclaim over and over, is that we all have the same signs and planets. We are the same. We’re the same in different ways, our chart representing the unique way we experience the world. So we all lie at times, we just lie differently and for different reasons.
In our charts, Mercury is the planet representing communication. In my great quest to find liars, I discovered that individuals with Mercury is water signs and/or aspected to Neptune communicate in a way I think of as “lying.” That’s because my Mercury is in Capricorn, a practical no-nonsense earth sign. If I’m hungry I might say something like, “I’m hungry.” If my Mercury in water sign friend with Neptune opposite is hungry, he/she may say, “I haven’t eaten for days. I think I’m going to faint.” That may not be true, in a Capricornian kind-of way. But it may be how this Mercury in water feels. It’s not a lie; it’s an expression, a feeling.
The importance of communication, to me, is way overrated. You hear people say, “It’s so important in a marriage to communicate.” At work we constantly and eternally try to improve communications yet people continually feel excluded or that the communication is not clear. Where I work, we talk all day every day yet we feel we are not communicating. Why?
To me, it’s not about communication. It’s about agreement. It’s about sharing a perception of the world. Talking and writing are means for me to send data to you. That’s all.
We are driving on a 1,000 mile road trip and I say, “I’m hungry.” You respond that you are hungry as well. My Mercury is in an earth sign so I make the logical leap that we are stopping for lunch. Your Mercury is in an air sign so you are able to have hunger and ignore it because the long drive is helping you think through the details of your new invention. We communicated. We sent data to each other. We soon learn that our initial communication was not enough. We communicate more and hopefully at some point find agreement. We either stop for lunch or we learn to keep snacks in the car. Or we find other traveling companions.
I’ve been to several silent meditation retreats and am always amazed at how easily you can get along peacefully with your fellow man. Who knew? Talking not only isn’t necessary, it makes life complex. At the silent retreats, we make an agreement before the silence on how we will live and how we will treat each other. Because we signed up for the retreat and even paid some money, we agree. We agree to get along and not complicate the agreement with unnecessary talk. We don’t let the talk confuse the simple things we are doing like eating, walking, sitting and sleeping.
I’ve also learned from silent retreats how much my own talking is not truly about communicating. I’ve learned that my talking is a way to appease others. I have noticed during silence that a lot of the talking I would have done, had we not had given each other the gift of silence, would have been simply to grease the engine of the social interaction machine. It’s embarrassing to realize the emptiness of most of my talk, how I talk to keep others from bothering me.
Mercury is still important, of course, being one of the Gods and one of the planets in our chart. Mercury delivers meaning. Mercury is the hyperlink on the web page, moving you from one topic to another. Mercury is a text message. Mercury is the thought “I’m hungry” that your belly sends to your brain. Mercury is the iPhone I recently purchased that I look at 85% of my waking hours for texts and emails from my friends. Mercury is great fun, sending me interesting tidbits of this and that all day long, from the weather report to the location of a friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend eating dinner at a restaurant.
As anyone with an iPhone discovers, Mercury can take over your life. The Internet allows Mercury to go mad, delivering, delivering, delivering. Tweeting, tweeting, tweeting. Sharing, sharing, sharing. Blogging, blogging, blogging.
Mercury is a link but it is not the meaning. The meaning is what Mercury is delivering.