We know of solar eclipses and moon eclipses, but a fact that some people do not know is that from time to time there are also eclipses of Venus and Mars, passing exactly between Earth and the Sun. Well – eclipse might not be the right word. Venus and Mercury are so small they can hardly cover it, but with a special solar telescope the transit of the small planets can be seen, as their small shadow creates a black dot that travels across the Sun.
There’s no use trying to see it with the naked eye –
Looking directly at the Sun is extremely dangerous – it will make one go blind ! But even with proper eclipse-viewing glasses – these transits are too small to be visible.
Here’s a NASA’s movie that includes a simulation of the coming Mercury transit – so you could know how it would look…
Venus’ and Mercury’s transits over the Sun are very rare. In order for them to happen a few things need to occur:
First – the times that it would seem to us that a planet is passing between us and the Sun is only when this planet retrogrades, and actually that what’s makes the retrogression !
Second – Mercury is retrograding a few times a year, and yet it is too small to be exactly “behind” the Sun in order to transit it. The second factor has to be that the retrogression would be within the eclipse season – when the plane of the solar system is in a perfect alignment with Earth. And so it happens that this current retrogression happens not long after the eclipse season with its solar and lunar eclipses we just had.
The last time we had a planetary transit over the Sun was in 2012 with Venus transiting the Sun. The next Mercury transit will be in 2019.
Astrologically Speaking – when retrograding Mercury shadows the Sun, our unclear thoughts are shadowing our core being. This might be a time of confusion, of trying to find logic in things, of making fun of important things, taking ourselves too lightly or trying to do things too quickly… We need to look out for this transit’s affects upon us, be aware of them and try to avoid them. And be careful – because this transit and retrograde of Mercury occurs while Mars, Jupiter and Saturn are all retrograding…