Two men drawing each other

Gemini, the Twins, invites you to let your curiosity be your guide through the world. Ruled by Trickster Mercury, this part of you seeks to investigate, learn, and exchange ideas with others.

I think
therefore
I am.

~ Rene Descartes, 1637

I think I am,
therefore I am!
(I think)
At least,
I think I must be.

~ The Moody Blues, 1969

Gemini glyphWhat are the archetypal qualities of the zodiac sign Gemini? An archetype is like a prototype or seed idea that can be experienced in many different ways. The signs form a progression of archetypal concepts and experiences, from Aries to Pisces. Everyone experiences the qualities of all 12 signs in their daily lives, not just if the person has the Sun, Moon, etc., in that sign. The lunar cycles (starting with the New Moon) brings the qualities of the New Moon's sign into our lives.

In the Aries-Taurus issue of Transitions, we set off on a cosmic journey starting with Aries and Taurus. The Aries cycle brought a great burst of life force and initiative, like a seed being shed from the husk of previous journeys. This seed contained an explosion of potential and possibilities in our lives. In the Taurus cycle, we planted this seed and stabilized its growth to ensure it has the fuel and endurance to survive the long process ahead. Taurus provided an opportunity to explore our attitudes about resources and our physical creaturehood.

Becoming Aware in Gemini

Now we reach the Gemini phase of our journey. In Gemini, we're challenged to increase our awareness and connect this new potential to our immediate environment or neighbourhood. Hence, Gemini and the 3rd House are associated with neighbours and siblings, local travel and the vehicles that get us there. They're also connected to the conceptual neighbourhood: books, magazines, newspapers, schools, teachers, writers, and the postal system.

I don't know why
You and I
are Gemini~ Alan Parsons

We are also part of our own neighbourhood. Psychologically, Gemini is the beginning of objective self-awareness. This is not to say that Aries or Taurus people are not self-aware; rather, Gemini energy brings the most basic forms of awareness into focus for everyone. Developing objective self-awareness is a long-term process that grows and evolves through the rest of the Yang signs: the Fire signs (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius) and the Air signs (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius). In terms of external projects and activities, Gemini is the stage in which we start to become aware of what we're trying to do and what will be involved.

There's Something Happening Here...

How do we become aware? What, exactly, is awareness made of? When we want to look at ourselves physically, we need a mirror. If we try to observe ourselves directly, our vision can become distorted, limited or blocked. A mirror provides us with a means to observe ourselves objectively, as separate objects. Similarly, to perceive our personality objectively, we need a mirror of some sort in the form of communication, relationships and the community.

This mirroring effect introduces the idea of duality: mind-body, internal-external, you-me. In Gemini, we have our first awareness of the multiplicity of Self: the risk-taker (Aries), the sensual self (Taurus), the inner child (Cancer), the creative self (Leo), the analyzer (Virgo), the projected self (Libra), the secret self (Scorpio), the truth-seeker (Sagittarius), the ambitious self (Capricorn), the individualist (Aquarius) and the spiritual self (Pisces). The Gemini person is especially prone to switching these personas to suit the situation. For all of us, archetypal Gemini brings us to an awareness of the many facets of ourselves.

The Yang signs (Fire and Air), especially the Air signs, form an evolutionary process of observing ourselves through the mirror of other people. In Gemini, we begin with information exchange: I tell you my thoughts and your give me yours. This is the basic purpose of communication, for which we need a common vehicle: language. Language requires that we have common names for what we see and experience: words. Through communication, we increase our awareness of the world around us (by hearing about others' observations) and also of ourselves (as we compare our perceptions to those of others).

This is the quest of the Gemini: to gather together as much information about their world as possible. It is their medium for knowing themselves and their navigation tool through life: gathering and sharing information. Deny a Gemini the opportunity to communicate and you deprive him or her of the very air they breathe!

Hermes the Trickster

glyph mercuryMercury, the planetary ruler of Gemini, is the Roman version of Hermes in ancient Greek mythology. Hermes was known as a trickster, a practical joker. Being the god of communication, speech and thought, he would often get into a mischievous mood and lead people down the garden path. He was also a clever charmer and a thief, shamelessly manipulating anyone and everyone for his own puckish purposes. Mercury, and therefore Gemini, are very playful! Our Gemini nature loves to play around with ideas, words, and sometimes people or situations.

Mercury goes retrograde about three times a year (meaning it appears to go backwards temporarily). Especially during these times, the trickster side of Mercury comes out to play, causing miscommunications, wrong numbers, mental muddles and confusing interactions. We go through Mercury retrograde about three times a year, so if the world sometimes seems a bit upsidedown, now you know why!

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