Mercury in the Tarot Cards

Mercury Planetary Symbol

You have probably heard it said so many times that it is become a cliché… “Communication is the key to successful relationships.” Mercury is the celestial ruler of communication. When Mercury goes retrograde we get an opportunity to pause the output and examine how we communicate with others as well as observe our self-talk. Mercury is the most agile and flexible of all the planets but its ability to move and express itself is modulated by the Element it is in.

For each of the four Tarot suit Elements, we will look both at how the Element modulates Mercury in general and specifically at the cards corresponding to Mercury with regards to modes of expression, blockages and advice….

Fire sign couple

FIRE – Wands

How they communicate: Mercury in the Element of Fire lends itself to a very frank communication style which can come across as brash. Mercury in Fire can also be extremely entertaining but not in the sense of dry wit. Think Eddie Murphy.

Blocked/overactive: Fear of self-expression or drawing attention to oneself is typical of a blockage. Acting out in anger instead of reasoning signifies overactive energy in this Element.

Advice: In the advice position, always seek to be direct in your communication. Stand your ground. Don’t make yourself smaller than you are. This is not a time for conflict-avoidance.

Tarot card: 8 of Wands – Mercury in Sagittarius. This is a card of speed and would definitely signify someone who speaks before thinking it through. Sagittarius is a funny sign. If correctly aligned, great wisdom can come out of their mouths but there is a clown/goof element to this sign as well. Surrounding cards will give more clues. A couple who share this communication style might be spotted arguing passionately while not giving a toss about who is watching.


Water sign coupleWATER – Cups

How they communicate: Mercury in the Element of Water signifies an empathetic communication style. They usually make wonderful listeners as they are receptive and naturally caring.

Blocked/overactive: Emotional manipulation and passive aggression are typical for blocked communication in the Water Element. A distinctive lack of objectivity and a tendency to gush are signs of overactive energy in Water.

Advice: Listen more than you speak. Open your heart to the needs of the other person and truly seek to understand where they are coming from.  Trust your intuitive guidance (not the same as reading between the lines or second-guessing the other person!).

Tarot card: 3 of Cups – Mercury in Cancer. This is the friend who is not afraid to communicate that they are there for you. This communication style lends it well to great intimacy if not emotional stability. A relationship under the influence of the communication style expressed by this card is usually very ‘lovey dovey’ to onlookers from the outside.


Air sign coupleAIR – Swords

How they communicate: Mercury in the Air signs gives us people who have great mental acuity and are able to detach emotionally when evaluating what is happening in the relationship. On the downside they can be aloof and come across as quite cold. Their tongue or pen are their weapon of choice and they tend to put more emphasis on what is being/has been said than any of the other signs and are excellent problem solvers.

Blocked/overactive: Blocked Air energy creates a reluctance to put words on what his going on. When overactive, you can expect scathing sarcasm. When overactive they also tend to get so wrapped up in their own thoughts that they make things worse for themselves rather than being able to come up with a solution.

Advice: Seek objectivity when Mercury in Air shows up in the advice position. If you find it difficult to say what you want/need from your partner (usually true for people born with Mercury Rx except when Mercury is Rx), try writing it down instead.

Tarot card: 6 of Swords – Mercury in Aquarius. This is a card that seeks an objective resolution that is centred in truth. Personal opinions and feelings really don’t have much bearing on what is happening. Friendships/partnerships under the auspice of this card are focused more on common interests or goals than on emotional affinity or sexual attraction. That is not saying the latter are missing, just that they are not the point of the relationship.


Earth sign couple

EARTH – Pentacles

How they communicate: Mercury in the Element of Earth usually signifies a communication style that is pragmatic and centred on the mundane. They are not known for their great sense of humour but Mercury in Capricorn (Cardinal Earth) lends itself to a kind of dry wit that appeals to some. They can be slow on the uptake and may need time to process information before they deliver a reply but when they do it is usually well thought-through and delivers a practical solution.

Blocked/overactive: An inability to come up with practical solutions; psychosomatic issues. Being extremely rigid, dull and unyielding can be a sign of overactive Earth Element communication energy.

Advice: You need to find a practical solution to your problem and also consider health/financial aspects that may be playing a role. Give your partner some time so that you can come up with a solution you are both happy with.

Tarot cards: 5 of Pentacles – Mercury in Taurus. The speed of Mercury is severely hampered by the heavy energy of Taurean Fixed Earth. Think Ents in Lord of the Rings.

10 of Pentacles – Mercury in Virgo. Virgo is Mutable Earth so not quite as slow as the 5 of Pentacles communication-wise. This is a detail-orientated sign which can be perceived as pernickety by others. They do care about details in order to ensure good long-term results for everyone though so best cut them some slack.

Blessed Be!