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Life Arts    H4'ed 7/15/12

The Cosmic Story: Cancer New Moon - Values to Live By

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The Cosmic Story:Cancer New Moon, July 19, 2012: Values to Live By

Preface to Leaves of Grass (excerpt) -- Walt Whitman

Love the earth and sun and the animals,
despise riches, give alms to everyone that asks,
stand up for the stupid and crazy,
devote your income and labor to others,
hate tyrants, argue not concerning God,
have patience and indulgence toward the people,
take off your hat to nothing known or unknown,
or to any man or number of men,
go freely with powerful uneducated persons,
and with the young, and with the mothers or families,
re-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book,
and dismiss whatever insults your own soul;
and your very flesh shall be a great poem....


The Sign of Cancer

The zodiac sign of Cancer is the Cosmic Womb, Mother of all, the place of gestation and inner growth.   The constellation of Cancer is a nursery of galaxies. The creativity of Cancer is not limited to physical birth, however; the seeds Cancer gestates are creative seeds, the forms diverse and individual.   Cancer is associated with the waters of life, and its creativity lies in all aspects of life -- biological, artistic, imaginative, practical, and mystical.   Cancer is our creative matrix: Cancer contains the powers of creation and destruction, life and death.  

Moonlit Lake
Moonlit Lake
(Image by Cathy Pagano)
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The power of Cancer lies in the Moon, in its ability to give form and shape to the seeds of life.   While the Sun symbolizes Consciousness, the Moon symbolizes the Unconscious, both our unconscious behavior patterns as well as the magical cauldron of the Collective Unconscious.   The Moon's light comes and goes, imaging the lunar consciousness of Feminine Spirit's mystery and potential.   The Moon's energy is related to our emotions, our intuitions and our need to nurture.   Like the tenacious Crab (watch out for her claws!), which is the symbol for Cancer, we tend to form strong emotional attachments to the things we create.  

Cancer can give rise to positive mother-love, the much-needed bond a child or a project needs to thrive; giving support to the child's development, talents and goals.     But like the playful, shifting moonlight, pure light can turn to darkness if we hold on too long.   The mother needs to let go at the right time for her child to mature, or the child gets stuck in the negative Mother complex -- the dark, devouring Mother who is never satisfied.   The Moon teaches us the rhythms of attachment and release, of ebb and flow.   The waters of the Earth, and of our bodies, dance to the rhythm of the Moon.

Cancer New Moon

We know that a new Moon begins a new cycle of energy each month.   Every year, the Cancer new Moon offers us an opportunity to renew our emotional body.   And since the Moon is the ruler of Cancer, it makes this new Moon renewal doubly important.   When we understand our unconscious motivations, we can work with our feelings and choose our actions.   When we continue to ignore our emotions and instincts, our old behaviors deaden us, the inner "well' runs dry and we're stuck going round and round the same place, the same issues, the same feelings.   When we don't acknowledge and take care of our emotional body, it's not as easy to activate new energy each month.   In the first instance, we are being empowered by the positive mother-complex.   In the second, we are caught in the negative-mother complex.   This new Moon wants us to embody our feelings and learn to work with them.   Then on the following new Moons we can get on to new business.

Cancer is an action-oriented water sign, picking up not only on our own feelings, but the feelings of people around us.   Cancer pushes us to do something about those feelings, helping us stay creative, fluid and mobile, adapting to the situation.    Cancer symbolizes the Mother, and it is Mom who nurtures our original emotional body.    Moms have to go with the flow and be attuned to our child's needs and emotions, and when a person has strong Cancer influences in their chart, they too develop the "mom antenna' that lets them know exactly what's going on beneath the surface.    The trick with Cancer is to know when to do something about it and when to hold back and give silent support.

When we accept the "positive mother' we actually like ourselves and our values, especially if they contribute to the whole community.   We don't compare ourselves to some cultural stereotype of who we should be, and we certainly don't give more value to other people's opinions than to our own original thoughts and ideas.   

We learn about who we are by what we value -- truth, honesty, integrity, beauty, grace, kindness, compassion.   Walt Whitman's advice is pertinent now, as we work on the desperately needed transitions our society has to make.   Each of us, working together, can create a new way of living on our great Mother, the Earth.   But we have to have values that we're willing to stand up for.   Cancer urges us believe in ourselves, trust ourselves and work to create a better life for all of us.

The Sabian symbol for the Sun and Moon at 27* Cancer is:   A violent storm in a canyon filled with expensive homes.     This symbol refers to a confrontation between our social norms and Nature.     This kind of intense energy can destroy superficial, materialistic world-views which are out of alignment with Nature.     And it reminds us that as we face the karmic crisis of a depleted environment and a soul-less society, we have to change our values - or rather, begin to live by those values we say we believe in.     Our expensive houses and comfortable way of life will do us no good unless we work with Nature, and our own human nature, not against her.

This Cancer new Moon is challenged by Saturn in Libra, asking us to take others into consideration when we decide what we need and what we value.   Which relationships are nurturing to you?   Which relationships aren't?   This Cancer new Moon is a great time to meditate and be alone with yourself.   First learn to mother yourself, because that's how we learn to know what we need.   Once we understand our own emotional needs, we can tune into others without projecting our needs onto them.   And like a great mom, we can actually listen to their emotional bodies and understand just what kind of help and support they need.  

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Cathy Pagano is a spiritual advisor and Jungian psychotherapist, storyteller, author and teacher. She is the author of a book on the return of the Goddess, "Wisdom's Daughters: How Women Can Change the World". Cathy trained at the C. (more...)

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