Light Bridge for Cancer and Cancer Rising
Do you consider yourself a person of influence in the world? Take that however you like. I have my own ideas what the word influence means, which I will share with you; the concept is meaningful for several reasons — indeed, it’s repeated from nearly every angle of your astrology. These days MSNBC is running a promo ad featuring former Republican congressman and morning show host Joe Scarborough giving his concept of the word. He says that influence is about making people do what you want them to do. That is obviously the opinion of a politician, not an artist, writer or social reformer.
Another concept of influence is about initiating ideas. Someone is certainly influential who invents something or solves a problem. Those who create words and pictures that help people open their minds to new possibilities are also people of influence. They may be a bit ahead of their time; ideas can take a little while to be noticed or to catch on.
Those who provide space that enables different people to share common ground are influential. It’s clear that the notion of influence goes well beyond control, and I suggest you consider your own idea of what influence is because you are moving into a position where you can, and indeed will, influence the lives of others. You have many options for how to do this. Yet the thing to remember is that all influence begins with how you experience yourself; how you see yourself. This influences your relationships from the beginning.
And if any one thing appears to be changing more than everything else combined, it is how you relate to others and how they relate to you. This is part of a deeper process, though, which involves your orientation on existence. Without making a simple point sound overly philosophical, you live in a world that is changing rapidly, and while there is no denying that this is true on its own, the other side of that equation is how rapidly you are changing. What appears to be sudden movement now is really your outer life catching up with lots and lots of emotional growth.
If you are facing new challenges, if your life seems to be getting more intense, if you are finding yourself with more responsibilities and more occasions to which you feel the need or desire to rise, this is the result of one thing: you are ready.
If you’re feeling pushed, overtaxed and challenged by extremes, you may feel like you have to reorganize your life, and some of that may help. But while you do this, remember that the central organizing principle is your emotional orientation. By that I mean the feeling tone with which you relate to the world, and the corresponding emotional content of your experiences with others.
The past two years in particular, you’ve been involved in a process of purging outdated emotional material, tendencies, and something about the cyclical quality of your personality. Living things all move in cycles, but as a maturing individual who wants to be dependable and maintain your focus, you need slower cycles, with more dependable transition points — and this is what you’ve been cultivating.
Of this emotional theme, the astrology I’m referencing is eclipses that have been moving through your sign. Eclipses follow the lunar nodes, and you’ve had the South Node in your sign since mid-2009, a process that is completing itself in early 2011. The nodes run in an 18-year cycle, but there are two of them so that means there’s also a nine-year cycle. If you’re looking for an understanding of just what tendencies you’re letting go of, think back to the early 2000s when you were gathering those tendencies together into a new version of your personality. One thing I would remind you about that era is that it was the dawning of the age of fear.
The South Node has a cathartic effect, but also a protective one. It both helps us offload and re-pattern the emotional tendencies that are not working, and helps us remember personal qualities and body memory from a more distant past. This provides us with a tap into what you might call primary knowledge. As the eclipses of the Sun and the Moon have passed through your sign (four of them, including an event coming in July 2011), you’ve reached a series of points where you condensed your learning, let go of your old tendencies and embraced new ones.
Part of the process has been to get you to be less self-centered and more centered on yourself. This may sound like a subtle or nonexistent distinction. There is a difference, and that difference involves depth, and it involves purpose. Self-centered (as the term is currently applied) does not imply introspection or growth. Centered on yourself suggests precisely that. The astrological sign Cancer is the cradle of human incarnation. You can think of it as an energy that facilitates souls being born into physical existence. As someone with this sign prominent in your chart, you are in a continuous process of becoming. You could ascribe the cycles that your sign is so famous for — of mood, habit, relationships, diet or your desire nature — to that ongoing cycle of incarnation. With each cycle you reach into something new and let go of something old, or at least you can use the cycles that way.
What the presence of the eclipses and the nodes has done is give you access to longer cycles. In considering a nine-year or an 18-year cycle, you will be exploring and considering a lot more territory than we normally consider.
Living Inside Out
I suggest that if your life circumstances are coming through the astrology or your experience as ‘too intense’, or bringing too much change all at once, the thing to do is pull back in and focus on your experience from the inside out. This can be challenging when there are things happening that appear to be out of your control, though returning to a place of inner focus is exactly how you would regain your influence; and that can be our first working definition of a person of influence.
Another idea of influence involves what you focus on. At this time in your life I suggest you focus your creative energy on one long-held goal. Contrary to what you may think, this will not preclude other goals; rather, it will teach you how to get to them, through a process of focus, invention and manifestation.
The stereotypical descriptions of your sign as family-oriented and merely seeking security and comfort are about to wear through their threads. This will be an occasion for you to step past whatever garden gates you’ve contented yourself to live inside and explore a bolder expression of yourself. This is not about doing something, it’s about being who you are, which will lead to more of who you are.
It’s as if deep inside you is the archetype of yourself, which in odd moments you may suddenly recognize that you not only can become, but that it is who you really are and can be at any moment. Some modern mythologies describe this as the higher self — your true identity, who is in contact with Source at all times and who understands your original intentions for coming to the world. That may be a useful metaphor; if so, let’s use it, and get ready to let it go when we need to.
The ‘higher self’ is the one that is not bound by fear or the limitations of the ego, and can see life from an experience of your full potential. Of course, if we didn’t experience so much fear (particularly fear of expressing ourselves) we would not need this concept. In astrology this shows up as an aspect of the 9th house, which is where we also find out about the influence of religion. Religion is full of angels and devils and concepts that divide the self into many bits and pieces, that tend to divide what we think of as human from what we think of as divine, and which make a diversity of judgments about what is worthy of being deemed spiritual.
It’s time to embrace new ideas. The angels and devils of your past will become as meaningful as the designs on the wallpaper of your childhood room. They may still exist; you may still vaguely remember them; but they are no longer as dominant or mysterious as they once were. The long transit of Uranus through Pisces has opened your mind to possibilities that you would have never considered. With any luck your world is a bigger place now than it was seven years ago. And it is getting bigger every day.
You are now experiencing a group of new outer-planet transits that seem custom-designed to help you reshape your reality. You’re born under the sign Cancer, though the sign to focus on is Pisces, which represents the world of your possibilities. Pisces has been and will be running constantly in the background of everything you’re experiencing, and it’s all about vision. While you may feel that visions or Pisces offer little in the way of material substance, remember that everything starts with a vision.
A film starts with an idea; that idea can come from a dog barking. A skyscraper can start with a sketch on a napkin. It has to start with a sketch somewhere. You can also solve a lot of problems by working them out in a notebook. As you go through life remember that everything you look at has a corresponding drawing, and the drawing usually came first. This simple order of operations — concept, sketch, manifestation — is how many inventors work. And since you have so many ideas, you need a process by which you can harness some of that. This is one method.
For seven years, you had Uranus running through your 9th and you may have felt like you could see yourself doing very nearly anything. You may have had a thousand ideas of which I hope you wrote down at least 100. You may have roamed and rambled and not known where solid ground was. No doubt this was a restless time, but one which stretched you.
Now Uranus is changing signs, and two new factors are entering your 9th house. You lose nothing with these transits and gain some significant advantages. My game plan with this reading is to go over the 9th house — your visioning factor, the single most important one you’ve got going — then get to the more nuts-and-bolts structural elements of your chart. Remember that it all — as in everything — comes back to your vision. When you are wondering what to do, go back to the drawing board and either make a new sketch or review the old one. Plan your work, work your plan and prepare for modifications along the way.
The World You Can Imagine
As a Cancerian or Cancer rising, your chart is deeply resonant with whatever goes on in Pisces. That sign, for you, is your 9th house, and the combination of Pisces and 9th is deeply creative. Chiron arriving here suggests that your horizons are radically expanding.
In traditional astrology, the 9th is the house of everything ‘higher’, from what certain spiritual philosophers term the ‘higher self’ (that inner archetype of the real you) to the higher courts (rather than local or trial courts). It’s where we would seek true identity, authentic justice and not coincidentally, a long-range vision. The 9th, from the ancient days of astrology, pertains to all things that are exotic, distant and, to use current parlance, spiritual.
Chiron is about experience rather than theory. You may have had lots of theories in recent years, and now is the time to put them into use; to test them out; to give them a voice and a field of exploration. If the 9th is about long distances, Chiron says you make the trip (it looks like some version of travel over water). Chiron is about documentation — the sketch of the concept, which takes it much closer to manifestation; indeed, the sketch is a form of manifestation.
The 9th house is where we get information about connecting to a level of the psyche that is more closely identified with the energy of the source. By source, I mean the love that drives the universe forward, and heals us when things go awry. Think of the 9th as an alternate identity that is liberated from the fear and guilt associated with what we call the ego. That fear/guilt aspect often declares itself the mind’s one identity, hijacks the psyche and is, on the psychic level, one of the reasons why so many people drag themselves through existence with such struggle and misery.
When we focus on the 9th house, we can begin to find a path beyond the maze of the ego’s awareness. Pisces is a useful sign to have connected to this house. Of itself, Pisces has a way of shedding worldly concerns and reaching deeper toward the mysteries of existence. But the environment on our planet has a little problem here — the frequency of consciousness connected to Pisces is often jammed with advertising, imagery, glamour, alcohol and many other forms of diversion. Pisces at its clearest is pure soul energy — and we know how easy that is to obscure. As a result, many tend to live with an extremely limited vision of what their lives can be.
Chiron transiting your 9th house is here to help you focus your vision and draw on energy that could best be described as soul powered.
Chiron has many manifestations; it will often meet us on a level slightly higher than the one we’re accustomed to being on. One of the first things Chiron does is send a few signals to wake us up from denial. For a log of those signals, consider the course of your life between April 20 and July 20, 2010, when Chiron made a brief visit to Pisces. What did you learn or observe during that phase?
You might tack on a few months after, since Chiron tends to start processes in motion that gather momentum and will continue moving in the background. From time to time one of those background processes will surface, calling you beyond everything you think of as familiar, secure and comfortable — not for the purpose of disrupting you, but rather to summon you to a better place. In the past that better place may have seemed elusive; now it will be more tangible.
What exactly was so elusive? Where we have Pisces in our chart feels like a blind spot. On one level, Pisces can represent a mystical dimension, but it can also manifest as out-and-out denial, the problem being that often we don’t know what we’re denying. With Pisces in the 9th house the spiritual realm can have a quality of invisibility, either blending into the background of life, or seeming so exotic as to be inaccessible, and it can be obscured by things like drugs, drink and various forms of glamour.
Chiron through this sector of your chart represents a clarification process, a healing process and a journey. The experience of connecting to yourself spiritually if you have not done so in a while, or ever done so, can be painful. You may, for example, tune into everything you were denying in the past, and be confronted by how much growing you need to do. You may feel daunted by your own potential, or by how much you don’t know. You may have the sense that others are so far ahead of you.
You might call these things part of the normal spiritual crisis that people go through in times of real growth. Remember that it’s not where you came from that matters, it’s what you see and experience now.
Chiron’s role is to keep your journey as practical as it is rich with potential. What Chiron seeks is specific forms of expression. It’s not enough to ‘have big ideas’ or ‘want to do something great’. With Chiron it comes down to what, specifically, you want, or potentially what precisely you must do to fulfill your soul’s calling — not ‘in this lifetime’ but through what you do now.
Part of this story involves relationships. Here is how: You have for five years had Chiron in your 8th house — the house where resources are exchanged. You’ve also had Neptune there. Cutting a very long story short, the past five years have been about getting clear in the kinds of relationships where you really struggled with clarity. It often felt like a mutual lack of clarity, but Chiron gave you the clue that all clarity begins with you. That’s one way to sum up Chiron both through your 8th and moving into your 9th — this enhances your sense of purpose, and takes things that you might have thought of only in the context of relationship to others as being in the context of relationship to yourself.
You are still free to share; but the distinction involves the order in which you proceed.
Neptune is an influence that brings a spectrum of sensations, from inspiration to delusion. Like the other planets, Neptune is the kind of planet where you pretty much call the tune, but how we handle Neptune energy is one of the biggest tests of integrity. It can be the most creative force and the most destructive.
Neptune makes a brief visit to Pisces between April 4 and Aug. 4. Then it returns to Aquarius until February of 2012, when it enters Pisces to stay until 2025. Right now we are in the last stages of just such a transition of signs, the first since the late 1990s. These transitions are rare and beautiful moments, a little like diving into the area of a spectrum where one color morphs into the next.
In terms of individual charts, the change in signs is a change in house or area of emphasis. Chiron is running vanguard of Neptune a little, though the two transits are intimately linked, in particular because of a long and still ongoing conjunction between them.
Neptune adds something that Chiron is able to make good use of; the focusing power of Chiron goes well with the inspirational energy of Neptune. You could say that Chiron is assisting with the sign transition of Neptune, making us aware of what to focus on as this transit develops.
My take is that Neptune’s exit from the 8th house and Aquarius is the beginning of a phase of clarity in your financial and sexual relationships. This clarity is well underway, represented by the year-long conjunction of Chiron and Neptune that we have just experienced. Yet I think that the clarity will keep coming.
Neptune ingressing Pisces and your 9th house is here to refresh your vision, and give you a more idealistic sense of what you think is possible for you. Think of it as a gush of clean water pouring into the rivers and seas of your soul, as if flowing from the deepest cosmic source. Think of Chiron as a bridge across that water — the bridge across forever.
The Cardinal Cross of 2010-2011
Let’s take a look at some of the more localized astrology and debrief some of what you’ve been through the past four or five seasons, then look ahead. As you have likely read, there is a cardinal cross in the sky comprised of Saturn in Libra, Jupiter and Uranus in Aries, Pluto in Capricorn and the combination of eclipses and some odd, obscure points transiting your sign, Cancer. Far from being over, the cardinal cross proceeds well into 2011 and will have significant effects into 2012.
But in some ways the energy is softening up, and we are growing accustomed to it. For sure the astrology of 2010 was jarring; consider the news events, and remember that the same astrology that shapes the world shapes our personal experiences (the current year is no less interesting, but things so far seem to be proceeding on a more constructive tack and fortunately there is not a national election here in the States). You’ve felt changes influencing every aspect of your life on the level of ideas and events. These include your work, your most intimate relationships, and your sense of emotional independence (which has set in motion changes in your relationship to your family of origin and your current household).
Yet while so much was happening in the seemingly outer world, as I’ve described — thanks to the South Node in your sign — you’ve been deeply involved in a purge of many of your emotional tendencies and character traits. You’ve had to confront, at times quite successfully, your lifelong insecurities. You’ve been compelled to do something that happens rarely in our time of history, or perhaps ever, which is to grow up. As that process has gradually risen above its foundations, you’ve felt freer to take on the world: to rise to the occasion of life in a new way. And there have been plenty of occasions to rise to.
Looking back at the past year you would probably say you had no choice, that the circumstances of your life — many of which seemed beyond your control — compelled you to grow and evolve. But you had, and have, a choice; there are many approaches to the situations you’re involved with.
Yet inside all of these circumstances, at the center of your cosmic circle, has been this process of letting go of old emotional habits, particularly your tendency to be so defensive and emotionally reactive. You have a bit further to go on this one, however you’ve accomplished enough to see it’s actually possible, and worth setting your intentions and your choices in this direction. As you do so, the maturity that takes the place of what was formerly wild instability will impress you, and inspire you to proceed in this direction.
Let’s look at the other three arms of the cardinal cross, in the order that the transits are happening.
Pluto in Capricorn — your 7th house.
This places an unusual emphasis on relationships. Yet this is no ordinary emphasis: you are drawing to you relationships that challenge you, that push your limits and perhaps more than anything, challenge your past ideas of what a relationship is (or is ‘supposed to be’). Our society, including our families, places enormous emphasis on the structure of relationships and on their supposed use, while losing contact with the content of relationships.
To the extent that the familiar forms of the past are coming apart, they are making room for substance. Indeed, they are liberating the soul of your relationships from the structures that prevented you from feeling the essence.
While you may have a habit of seeking security in structure or style, such as being able to name the ‘type of relationship’ or document the nature of the commitment, this is one of the great charades of life — and you’re outgrowing it fast. Someone is to you who they are; the category or supposed rule does not matter. Yet this may be leaving you feeling vulnerable, which is precisely the opportunity of this transit.
We tend to create relationships that are obsessed with what we think of as tradition, but really they are about rules and choreography. We get caught in this idea that the way things are now is how they were forever. This blocks spontaneity, and traps our creativity and love in little compartments and boxes, and these are now being burst open, setting their energy free.
Pluto is a rejuvenating force, which is pushing you to rise to the occasion of both your life and the individual people in it. You may feel confronted; you need to learn how to respond appropriately to every different experience. It’s vital that you size people up intuitively, accurately and make sure you check your perceptions against reality.
With Pluto in your 7th house or opposite your Sun, it’s necessary to be mindful of any situation where obsession shows up as a factor. This could be your obsession or that of someone else. It could mask as ‘in love’ or a control drama or some combination. You could feel backed into a corner. I suggest you take apart the situation and look at the components. Deep inside there is an impulse to experience your relationships a whole new way, and as that happens you’re likely to notice what you don’t want. Let that guide you in the direction of what you truly do want.
Remember that Pluto is clearing space within your constructions of what a relationship is, and as such, some relationships may not make it. The ones that do will be transformed in ways you can truly relate to.
Saturn in Libra — your 4th house.
This transit is related to Pluto in Capricorn because it’s specifically designed to demonstrate the value of emotional independence. By that I don’t mean casting off everyone in your life — though between these transits you may be altering relationships that you feel have an unhealthy emotional dependency, and in any event it would be a good idea to do that.
Rather, I mean being able to occupy your feelings and depend less on others for support, which often turns out not to be so supportive anyway. You could think of this as learning to become your own partner, your own perfect housemate. This will free you to embrace the new concepts of partnership represented by Pluto through Capricorn — and those start with the freedom to be who you are.
Going back to late 2009, Saturn and Pluto were in a close square aspect, which may have brought a series of conflicts between the demands of a relationship and your own personal need for independence. The resolve was likely to have gone in the direction of your becoming a more autonomous person. I say this because it’s the direction of maximum growth, and other chart factors point in the same direction.
Still, these were significant challenges, and I suggest you look at them carefully and learn what you can from them. Pluto transits can leave a body memory and a kind of post-traumatic stress. It’s important to find your way into your current state of being and remember that the past is indeed the past. These events are likely to have set you free to live more fully on your own, and to be more authentically yourself.
This is one of those inside-out transits: something you make progress on within your emotional sphere and then can manifest on the outside.
This transit may also be bringing changes within your household, including where you physically live. If you are in some way displaced from your dwelling, I suggest you take the opportunity to follow the new adventure. This may be easier said than done, however, remember — you are extremely resourceful, and rarely lacking for your basic needs. Other key transits are calling you to be a lot bolder than you normally are, and this is a fine opportunity to do just that.
Your transits cover many deeply personal themes. However, the common thread is freeing up energy so that you’re able to be a more independent person in the world. There is one last transit that says where this is all going.
Jupiter and Uranus in Aries — your 10th house.
I began the discussion with this transit — about becoming a more influential person, and defining influence your own way. Aries is your 10th house — the house of reputation, status and success. It’s the top of your chart, and Aries on this house says you like to be a winner at what you do. It also suggests you need to be deeply personally involved with your work.
Uranus ingressing this sign/house, where it will be for the next seven years, is about a total revolution in this part of your life. But like every other revolution in your life, this one is coming from the inside out. You become different; you crave doing what you simply must do; then you get the freedom to do it. This freedom involves letting go of old notions of who you are and what your limits are.
With the exception of Eris, there has not been much energy in Aries for a long time, and now there is a whole lot and a lot more coming. Jupiter here at the moment, for less than a year, is opening space and helping you expand your idea of who you are. For many reasons this involves taking yourself seriously — keeping your sense of humor along the way.
Think of Jupiter as being a kind of welcome wagon for Uranus, rounding out and cushioning the influence of what can be a jarring planet. For a brief spell in 2010 you got a taste of both of these planets entering your 10th house, forming a precise conjunction on this thing called the Aries Point. That’s the very first degree of Aries, which applies to Cancer, Libra and Capricorn by extension. You have this point prominent in your chart, and it’s about to have the energy turned up.
This is the point of influence, of achievement, and of breaking through the glass ceiling you thought was holding you down. The combination of Jupiter and Uranus in this house says be your unique self. Indeed, such would seem inevitable under these influences, and it’s equally inevitable that this extended journey of being yourself will both teach you a lot about who that self is, as well as have some significant influence on the course of your life.
The thing to remember here is that both Pluto in Capricorn and Saturn in Libra are describing as much who you are not, as they are saying who you are. This is deductive logic: you are not that, therefore you must be something else. The nice part is you have enormous flexibility over that something else.
You cannot define yourself merely on who you are not, of course, but you’re at a point where being who you are means being very, truly, really different.
PS: Kronos in Cancer.
You’ve probably never heard of Kronos. It’s a hypothetical point, discovered back in eighteen-something-or-other, in Germany (where a lot of interesting astrology happens). Kronos, kind of a super Saturn, has a 521-year, perfectly circular orbit. Like many things in astrology, it does not have a physical form. It has a concept, a cycle and a few people who use it faithfully, and I think it’s worth describing because it’s a potent influence in Cancer at the moment, being early in your sign and closely involved with the mission you are on. In a word, Kronos is about excellence. It can manifest as faux superiority or importance, but I am with Arlene Kramer, who describes it as representing “the highest quality attainable; the ultimate in authority; standard of excellence; undisputed expert.”
Because this is in Cancer, it speaks to you personally, as something you are embodying. You may not feel like it, with big transits coming from every other direction, but that’s my highest reading of the process indicated by the presence of Kronos in your chart. I think that when a question of the standard of excellence is involved, the best approach to take is one suggested by the poet Robert Hunter, who says that it’s better to shed light rather than to master. So if you’re in the process of attaining mastery, which is really a state of mind, remember that your real job is to shed light. If you’re in the dark, all you may need is one little candle, not a Hollywood lighting system.
Still, there is such a thing as excellence; there is such a thing as quality, and this is what you have the opportunity to create for yourself. Have faith in your process. Among other things, Kronos in your sign, particularly coming under so many (more) transits, suggests that you bring the best of who you are, with faith and confidence, into the situations of your life. It’s one more facet of becoming a person of influence in the world. Remember that every transit in your chart is connected to every other. Each aspect of your life influences every other. Kronos is saying bring that devotion to excellence into everything you do. Identify personally with that excellence, which is, of course, an ideal or a spirit. Nobody is perfect, but your astrology suggests that this is the time to set your intentions on what you authentically want, based on who you authentically are.
No more is necessary; but no less.