The first Full Moon of 2014 is in the sign of Cancer, the Mother (the Sun is in Capricorn, sign of the Father). The polarity between the Sun in Capricorn and the Moon in Cancer asks us to reflect on what really nurtures us (Cancer) about our society (Capricorn). So let me ask you, do you feel our society meet our needs?
I'm reading a delightful book called "The Geography of Bliss" by Eric Weiner, a correspondent for NPR. Mr. Weiner traveled to 10 countries, trying to find the answer to the question, "What is happiness?" Each country's idea of happiness was different. I'll leave it to you to go out and read the book to discover what he discovered!
But this book got me thinking about this Full Moon. Cancer is all about what nurtures us--basically what makes us feel happy and secure. Capricorn is all about what kind of society we live in and how we contribute to it. Together, they ask the question, is our society meeting our needs? If not, how can we "make it so'? Since a Full Moon makes us aware of something, let's explore this issue.
With Pluto in Capricorn, we're seeing what is corrupt and no longer viable in our society. We're seeing if our ideals are reflected in our government and our financial institutions and our community. Pluto is definitely telling us that something is lacking when Americans no longer trust that our representatives are representing our hopes and wishes. (We still can't get them to make a ruling on labeling GMOs when over 50% of Americans want that labeling.) And from the many protests around the world, most of our governments are not representing our needs. In a dictatorship, that's expected. But not in a democracy!
Jupiter is in Cancer now,
expanding our vision about what nurtures us and our beliefs about life. It's interesting that the U.S.A.'s 4th
of July chart makes us a Cancer country. This chart describes America's view of our
national character--our myth about ourselves.
This chart definitely speaks to the Declaration of Independence and its
belief that we are all entitled to "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness'. Cancer is certainly connected to life and
There's that happiness thing again. It's
part of America's mythology that we all get to be happy if we live in
America. With an emphasis on Cancer
(Sun, Venus, Jupiter, Mercury retrograde) in the chart, we see the nurturing
image Americans have of ourselves. This
chart's Moon (the ruler of Cancer) is in Aquarius--that's the liberty part. It seems we have life, liberty and the pursuit
of happiness right in the chart of our mythic story, our creation story.
So, the question is, are we happy? What makes for happiness? Does the economy make us happy, because our GDP (Gross Domestic Product) is what makes our government happy, since it's been bought out by our economic interests? It doesn't make me happy to see the destruction and waste of consumerism. Did you know that in the small Himalayan country of Bhutan, they have an official Gross National Happiness policy, which they believe is more important than their GDP? Wow! What a great idea! Shouldn't that be America's policy though, with our declared intention of giving everyone the right to pursue happiness? Somehow, America has conflated money with happiness. But that isn't necessarily the source of happiness. In the oil/gas rich country of Qatar, everyone shares in the wealth, but it's not a very happy or creative place. Money can't buy you love, and it can't buy you happiness (and it cuts you off from everyone else).
With Pluto digging up the dirt on our government and financial system, perhaps we need to decide what really is important about our shared life. The GDP is the sum of all goods and services a nation produces over a given time period. It doesn't take into consideration what we sell or produce (food, guns, rat poison), only how much money changes hands. If you do something for free, such as take care of an aging parent instead of putting them in a home, it doesn't count in the GDP. But doesn't it count in the most basic moral sense? As Robert Kennedy put it, "the GDP doesn't register the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages, or the intelligence of our public debate. The GDP measures everything except what makes life worthwhile." (p. 75, GofB)
This Cancer Full Moon is asking us, what makes life worthwhile?
Cancer is also concerned with security. Does that mean we have to give most of our tax money to the military-industrial complex to feel secure? Does that make us happier, knowing that we spend more on our military than the next 21 countries combined spend on theirs? Does NSA spying on us make us more happy and secure? Doesn't our security also entail our education system, our infrastructures and our commitment to helping each other? I don't know about you, but I'd rather fix our broken education system, our bridges, our health care and our job markets than make more tanks (which are now being given to police in Florida). Since Americans paid taxes on their wages before they lost their jobs, don't they deserve some of it back in the form of unemployment until we create more jobs?
These are only a few of the issues that face us as we begin 2014. Capricorn is the sign not only of our social structures but of where we are called to step into our role in the culture. In about 10 years, America will have our first Pluto return (it takes about 240 years). So we are at the end of a cycle of transformation, and we're getting a look at where America has come from and what its' become. Are we happy with how our country has fulfilled that shining promise of "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness'?
Imagine! You can say I'm a dreamer (and I am) but I'd rather have a policy of Gross National Happiness than one of GDP running the show. And perhaps, I'm not the only one.