Semantic Saturation

Adam Sommer
3 min readFeb 8, 2023

…On Mercury, Pluto, and a move into Aquarius

Words not only have migration patterns, but they also can experience metamorphosis. What may have meant one thing in Old English, may mean something completely different today. Take weird as an example; In Old English, it referred to the threads of destiny woven by the Wyrd Sisters. Today, it’s something we say when an experience doesn’t fit the parameters of what we deem normal. And if you say it enough, over and over again, it may even lose its meaning altogether. That’s what is called ‘semantic saturation.’

It seems the world (mainly the West) is experiencing a kind of semantic saturation at the moment. Perhaps it’s not a saturation, but a perturbation. So much of what we are fighting about is a slight of the tongue. We can’t agree on the meanings of words. Politicians use this in their favor and we are constantly at each other’s throats about not being understood. Some may say it’s happened with the word ‘vaccine.’ Others are pretty confused about the word “woman.” What is left, what is right, what democracy? It’s even true in our own field of astrology. What is astrology exactly? This is all a strain of hermeneutics, which lands us securely into the domain of Hermes, the neutral planet of interest for this piece.

Currently, Mercury is a morning star and is fast approaching its yearly conjunction with Pluto. It occurs on the 10th at 28º of Capricorn. The day after, things get wyrd (or weird) with his ingress into Aquarius. In the spirit of this transformative/innovative terrain, I did what any modern human would do in 2023 and asked ChatGPT what it meant. This is what the AI had to say:

for the Pluto conjunction:
When Mercury is conjunct Pluto, this alignment may suggest intense communication and a strong will, as well as a transformative influence on thought patterns and perceptions. (hence, the taboo subjects in the second paragraph?)

for the ingress into Aquarius:
It creates independent thinkers. It is open-minded and focused on the future. It may also be good at adapting to change and communicating ideas in a non-traditional way. This placement is associated with individuality, friendship, and networking. (this bizarre idea to even consult an AI on the subject?)

Scary? Maybe. To me, it seems like it simply scoured the internet for generic interpretations and gave them to me. Yet, this is only the beginning. What will the AI be able to do with Astrology in the future may put that seismic forecaster of current fame to shame.

There’s also this old idea I’ve been thinking a lot about lately about how both thinking and speech slowly drain our vital subtle energies. In the secret history of the world, the step into language wasn’t an evolution exactly, but more a devolution. “They” talk about it as a loss of our ability to communicate with our minds, needing to develop the capacity to manipulate matter to allow communication to occur. Whether true or not, it’s wyrd and strangely inspirational to become more discerning about how we use speech and how aware we can be of our thinking.

…Oh, how much energy have we wasted on thinking about things that have never happened?

Here is a homework assignment: Connect themes from the beginning of this Mercury Cycle (Jan 7th; 16 º Capricorn) to the ideas gripping you now with these transits. Can you see a pattern? A progression of ideas? It’s a basic exercise to begin understanding how synodic cycles work. If you’d like to learn more, I just released an entire series on this very subject HERE.

Praise Hermes! Cadmus, Orpheus, Thoth, and the rest of the magical line of thought leaders….oOo




Adam Sommer

Dedicated to Kosmos, Mythos, and Psyche. “Great stories are worthy of constellations.” Substack: