Your Mercury Sign

Book Review: “Fish Can’t Climb Trees” by Helyn Connerr (published by Watkins books, 2016)

“Everybody is a genius.  But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” ~ Albert Einstein

Do you want to banish the Mercury retrograde blues which comes around regularly, at least partially?  I have been reading a fascinating book about enhancing communication by recognizing that we each have a different style of communicating, of taking in information and expressing it.  It is a method apparently which has been used in schools and other institutions with great success, and ties in with Astrology.  It is also reminiscent of my work with Animal Totems and Astrology, so for those of you who have enjoyed those blogs here’s some dessert!

It is based on taking the Mercury sign of the individual, which rules and represents the mental make up, and to a great extent (with caveats, such as aspects to your natal Mercury) shows how someone will learn most easily and  order their thoughts for communication.  Where lines of communication often fail is in the assumption that the other person thinks exactly the same way you do, which of course will often miss its mark. This book points the way to overcoming such blocks, and aiding those who have communication difficulties. I think this book is a valuable resource for teachers, anyone whose work depends on clear communication, and also assists personal relationships. Helyn Connerr, with a Masters in nuclear chemistry, was involved in leading-edge research in nuclear medicine in Boston, U.S.A.  Her previous book “Learning without Tears” was published in 2008, and her system, which has been extensively trialled, is called the Mercury Model, and is a resource to help parents understand children’s learning styles.

Your Mercury Sign

Do you know your own Mercury sign?  The book has an appendix in which you can look it up, but if you don’t know it, you could try on the Mercury for your Sun sign, which would have a one in three chance of being your actual Mercury sign, for Mercury is always either in the same sign or in one of your neighbouring sign, as it follows the Sun round the zodiac all the year round.  If that does not fit, you can look at the signs either side of your Sun, and you should find it.

Animal Totems

Regular readers will know that I have given extensive animal totems for each sign over the last year or two in my blogs, and in Helyn’s system, some (but not all) signs have been assigned animals.  And some of these accord with my own researches, and some are different, but it is all enjoyable and thought-provoking material, and in harmony with my approach.  The book is packed with examples and advice.  I will give you a sampler for each sign, and you may then want to go on and read the whole book:

Mercury in Aries

Scout, the Trailblazer

(represented as a Squirrel)

“I am quick on the uptake, active, direct, energetic, positive, lively and bright. I can be unflaggingly forceful and competitive.  And to everyone else, I am either stimulating or exhausting.”

Mercury in Taurus

Steady, the Vault

(represented as a Bison)

“I do not race at new ideas.  I take my time; I chew things over to be sure we will sustain each other happily over the long term.  I am not easily pushed, cajoled or led.  And, please note: if you try to hurry me along, I tend to slow down.”

Mercury in Gemini

Buzz, the Curious

(represented by a butterfly)

“I am a generalist. Just as a garden butterfly naturally touches lightly on every flower, stalk and stem, I dash across the surface of a wide spectrum of information.”

Mercury in Cancer

Sponge, the Sensitive

(represented by a koala bear)

“It would be really helpful and supportive for my family, friends, teachers/trainers, bosses, employees and colleagues to understand and work with my sensitivity, to see it and accept it as a natural part of my mental dynamics.”

Mercury in Leo

Rex, the Dignified

(represented by a lion)

“The crux of the matter is this: my thoughts are closely related to my identity.  The information I hold contributes to my sense of selfhood.  I am what I think.  Any idea that I take in goes right to my heart, to my core.”

Mercury in Virgo

Details, the Analyst

(represented by a monkey)

“I actually learn by separating large pieces of information into tiny bite-size bits.  I dissect.  I analyse.  I tear ideas apart, limb from limb.  I have to do this in order to learn.”

Mercury in Libra

Procon, the Diplomat

(represented by two parrots)

“My ability to argue both sides of an issue lets me develop excellent skills for debating, politics or law.  Ideas of fairness and justice are fundamental to my thinking.  This started in childhood and continues through my life.”

Mercury in Scorpio

Sherlock, the Detective

(represented by a snake)

“Here’s how I work.  As Sherlock I focus on new information with X-ray vision, seeing right to the core of the issue: the person, the lyrics, the news story, the painting, the game plan or whatever it is.”

Mercury in Sagittarius

Flash, the Pioneer

(represented by a fox)

“As Flash I am a positive, forward-driving mind.  I am optimistic and enthusiastic.  I am bright and lively and spiky and adventurous.  I boldly go where no mind has gone before.”

Mercury in Capricorn

Exec, The Achiever

(represented by a goat)

“As Exec, The Achiever, I am a hands-on learner.  I do not learn by looking, reading, talking, intuiting or feeling.  To really learn any new information, I have to get involved, try it out, test it, apply it in different circumstances, touch it, smell it, use it, measure it.”

Mercury in Aquarius

Boffin, the Innovator

(represented by a bird)

“My very favourites [ideas] comprise the set of all those ideas that nobody else has considered – the completely original ones that spring into or from my own mind, ideas that can become statements of my own individuality.”

Mercury in Pisces

Sonar, the Intuitive

(represented by a whale)

“My intuitive mind is highly visual and extraordinarily sensitive to what feels like a swirl of information around me.  I receive, absorb and interpret subtle signals that others apparently miss.  Ebbing and flowing like the tide, I never stay in one place very long.”

If you have read through these, and applied them to yourself, friends and family, it may have whetted your appetite for further research, application and reading.  I will definitely be incorporating this information in my own work.  Here’s to better communication on planet Earth!


We are blessed with two trines tomorrow, so make the best of them!  It’s not a bad week overall, but does end on a difficult note.

In the early hours of the morning, Venus trines Uranus. You may want to start the week and month with a bold artistic flourish.  You may finish that beach mural on the office wall, or complete an artistic project or musical composition.  Social engagements will be exciting, and in some cases impromptu.  Perhaps you will bump into an old friend, and catch up in the nearest cafe.  Savour the vibe.

The second trine, occurring late afternoon, is Sun trine Saturn.  This is a more prosaic aspect.  Having had your fun in the sunshine, you may want to take stock and solidify your accomplishments, or even lay down plans.  The lyrical poetry you produced earlier in the day, or the new friendship that blossomed, may inspire you to make something more enduring out of the day’s inspiration.  It is a good foundation stone for the rest of the week.

At the same time the next day (17.49 Hrs to be precise) Tuesday (2nd August), Mars enters Sagittarius.  Mars has been in the warrior sign of Scorpio for months, and this has been partly responsible for the spate of violent incidents around the world.  The position of Mars describes the nature of our collective energy, and going into Sagittarius it is still high energy, but more joyful, and more focussed on good will.  However, it can be a little mischievous: I associate Mars in Sagittarius with the swashbuckling Pirate Archetype.  So, high spirits for Tuesday.  Mars goes into Capricorn on 27th September, so you have until then to practise your pirate moves.

In the evening, there is a New Moon at 10 degrees Leo.  That is an opportunity to turn up the volume on whatever activity you are enjoying.  A lot of you will be working this week, but there is a real holiday or party atmosphere going on. Take a moment to reflect on your creative goals for the coming month, and focus any affirmations or visualizations on them.  It is a glorious technicolour day.

On Friday (5th) pleasure loving Venus leaves Leo and enters the sign of Virgo.  Part of you is called back to work.  You may be needing to pay attention to the detail of decor or fashion taste.  You may be perfecting a recipe for your future debut in Masterchef.  There is a need for fastidiousness about choosing the company you keep, or holding true to your values.  Discrimination or discretion may be required, and this may conflict with the exuberant energy being expressed by Mars.  But the reckoning for these two planets in square does not have to be faced until the early hours of next Sunday (7th).  You may even enjoy the interplay of the contrast.

We end the week with Mercury square Saturn on Saturday (6th).  Journeys and post may be delayed, communications and conversations difficult.  After some of the heady days earlier in the week, there may be a feeling of anti-climax, e.g. you may have been on holiday and are stuck on a traffic jam on the A30 near Okehampton.  It will be difficult to get going on Saturday, whatever the plan, and it is one of those times to remember all things must pass.  The evening may be livelier, with the Venus-Mars square just past midnight, when next week’s blog will be a twinkle in the eye.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – a golden day
  • Tuesday – high spirits
  • Friday – making fine choices
  • Saturday – slowing down