Plotting a Course, and Keeping it Simple

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Reality Check for Cancer and Cancer Rising | 2012 Annual Horoscope by Eric Francis

Looking at your charts as I began this series of readings for your sign, I was impressed by how complex they seem, on one level — so many options, so many potentials, and this sense that everything is connected to everything else. One of the year’s key events — the Venus transit of the Sun — happens in a veiled realm of your chart, adding to the mystery, yet in another sense helping you resolve a deep split in your psyche. Looked at one way, any complexity you see in the world is a reflection of your inner prism; any gray areas the result of your own inner shadow. As the year unfolds you’re likely to see things in much clearer perspective and as a result, make clearer decisions.

Infinite Creativity. Painting by P.C. Turczyn

Infinite Creativity. Painting by P.C. Turczyn

One attribute of your charts is that it seems like you can get anywhere from anywhere, which offers you many options or at least potentials. The key to tapping into those options or potentials is going to be simplicity, and staying focused on your mission. You do have a mission, even if nobody seems to understand it, and even if you are having some trouble understanding it yourself.

To focus on the theme of mission, let’s begin with Uranus in Aries, which has embarked on a long trip across your solar 10th house (10th house by whole signs, if you’re Cancer rising) — that of reputation, visibility and even a touch of fame. Closer to the core, the 10th is the house of solid achievement that is often rooted in a mission. Aries natally on this house (i.e., something you are born with) as a lifetime influence suggests that you need a career in which you can be a pioneer. You will thrive in environments where you can assert your individuality, which of course implies either God-given charisma or carefully acquired political skills. You have to strike a balance between being self-serving and serving the world, with an emphasis on the latter. In any event, you have to be you in whatever you do, which is not a necessity for many other people; they are able to make greater compromises in this area, ones that you’re not suited to make.

Uranus, which has arrived in this angle of your chart recently, is the most pioneering of the planets (with the possible exception of Chiron, which is also prominent in your charts this year). It speaks of some unusual success, and with a kind of ‘professional self-invention’ that might work out to be a self-reinvention over time. You might feel a calling to do something truly innovative.

Yet the tricky part is that Uranus across the 10th is more than most people know what to do with. For members of a society who are trained to sit still at school desks, and to major in subject areas they’re not actually interested in, and to take jobs that have them sitting in cubicles, and to count success in dollars, Uranus across the 10th house is more like a UFO abduction than most folks’ idea of innovation.

You find yourself with opportunities that you never imagined or don’t know if you want; you may be wondering when and where you signed up for all of this. You may be experiencing changes of career plans that are jolting you into an actual encounter with yourself, and at the same time leaving you feeling like you’re in the spotlight but on the spot.

There are many reasons, however, that you’re ready for this — there are many other transits that have been preparing the ground of your psyche and of your life, and you know that it’s time to do something innovative — or at least interesting in a new way — with your career, no matter how ordinary you think you are. Your chart is the perfect setup for finding yourself through your real work, and by real I mean the work that both challenges you and that has an impact on the world. If you feel ‘stuck’ in a job you may be feeling restless and rebellious; you may be asserting yourself in ways that turn out to be uncreative and unproductive.

You could just as easily — indeed, far more easily — regard yourself in the role of inventor. There is no out-of-the-box solution to what you want to do, or need to do, but you do have the capacity to create — or more accurately — to co-create something that will work for you and for many people around you. The kind of rebellion you want is the kind that has an immediate aura of usefulness, of pragmatism, even if you’re conducting yourself in ways that seem a little avant garde. That is the point. Both Aries and the 10th provide essential elements of leadership, and most of that leadership is going to come in the form of ideas, experiments, and innovative ways of refusing to conform that turn out to be helpful and that solve problems.

Which brings me back to school daze. Most of us have been so bored, almost to death, by the time we graduate high school; we have had our curiosity vacuumed out of every orifice; we have been flogged into conformity; we have been taught to think by the directors of TV commercials; that frankly it’s a wonder anything creative happens at all. But it does, and when you think about it, quite a few creative things happen (even if many of them have tons of commercials packed around them).

Often, the very most creative things happen under Uranus aspects, and you’re getting one now. You are being spurred to a kind of vibrancy that is, in theory, most ‘un-Cancerian’. This is a fine thing because it will get you out of your shell, out of your little zone of acceptable conduct, and most of all, out of the house and into what some call the Real World. Yet I suggest that you never understate your role, or your influence. Never under-value your ideas. You do not need to think that you’re big and bad, though a little of that spirit will help. Rather, I suggest you proceed with a sense of potential, knowing that what you say and what you do influences many people, and is a beacon for others.

I strongly suggest you eliminate all goals of wanting to make a splash, be famous, be a star or have a reputation. That will cloud your more important goals and detract from more vital motives. The part of your career that’s about you is what you put into your work, not necessarily what involvement people see on the outside. While this is truly extroverted astrology, and while you may indeed become well-known for a real contribution, keep working the energy from the inside out. Rather, I suggest that you fully project yourself into your work, whatever your work may be.

Remember, too, that innovation is often subtle. It’s often the smaller insights, concepts or inventions that get the job done. Creativity is often about working with the available tools or influences in a new way, not necessarily something that is obviously brilliant. It’s not that you’re incapable of brilliance; it’s that your power of invention needs to be suited to all levels of reality.

Rising to the Occasion: Pluto in Capricorn

Uranus in Aries has a counterpart transit, which is Pluto in Capricorn. This is a transit with a longer history. Capricorn is one of your angular houses, one with a direct impact on you. It’s your relationship house, and Pluto in this position represents an incoming influence that might feel like constant pressure or challenge — though coming from the outside.

This transit is influencing all of your relationships, but it’s more deeply existential than that; it’s influencing your experience and perception of the whole world — a world that is changing fast. Part of what you may feel pressure to do is keep up with the constantly shifting structures of your environment; the changes that people are going through; what at times feels either like a lack of stability, or living close to an edge but not quite being able to perceive that edge for what it is.

You could say that Pluto in the 7th house is about rising to the occasion; think of it as Pluto rising up above your personal horizon, presenting continuous challenges that you know you have no choice but to meet. To some this is annoying — to others it will be the adventure of a lifetime. Part of this adventure is in your personal relationships, which seem to be coming at you with increasing intensity. You can count on that continuing, though as the energy rises so too must your attentiveness to your circumstances.

In this respect, the astrology you’re under is some of the most promising and challenging you’ve ever lived through, or ever will. In astrology as in life, potential and challenge come in the same gesture, at least when you view the challenge as real and worth rising to. There is no such thing as ‘stuck’ for you in this era of your life. There is either moving with the energy, or being moved by it. Given the choice — and you do have the choice — I suggest with rather than by. The name of the game is keeping your options open without being overwhelmed by them — and then when the moment comes, choosing from among them.

If you are someone who has ‘problems making decisions’, get over yourself. Go to therapy, get a life coach, or just figure out what A Course in Miracles makes plain: the power of decision is the only power you, personally, have. Decisions are an ongoing process of existence. You make them all the time. Part of the challenge is bringing the matter of choice up to a conscious process.

In making decisions, there are three steps to the process. One is seeing options. The next is the basis for decision. Then you have to compare the two and take action on the basis of what is true for you. I emphasize decisions as a vital utility because for the duration of this year and for the foreseeable future, you are dealing with powers that may at times seem vastly larger, or more potent, than yourself. You are dealing with forces that seem to be compelling you to change, something that many sources say is impossible unless you want to do it.

To the extent that it seems like you’re being ‘forced to change’ or ‘forced to grow’, that illusion will be magnified when you give up your own influence in any situation. Your influence begins with your power to choose, from day to day and minute to minute, on an ongoing basis. I am not saying this to sound ominous. Your astrology is in fact somewhat ominous, which is the best news you could want — though the key to making the most of it is living in an extraordinarily conscious way.

One last thing to note about Pluto in the 7th house is that it has a way of feeding obsession. That can be driven by anything from the will to power, to hormones, to fear. One thing that anyone having a 7th house Pluto transit has to learn is how not to feed into obsession, whether your own or that of someone else. There are times you will need to sidestep conflict, turn yourself invisible or respond in an uncharacteristically low-key way in order not to feed into something negative. Sometimes you’re the most powerful for not fighting back.

Relationships, Career and What They Have in Common

The core of 2012 astrology is the Uranus-Pluto square, which describes how these two planets are working together. The signs involved are Aries and Capricorn, which have something in common with your sign — they are both cardinal signs, which means high initiative, assertive, direct and oriented on results.

The square between these two planets has been developing for some years, but it is in 2012 that it first forms an exact aspect — a few days after the Sun enters your sign, by the way. Therefore, if your Sun is in Cancer, it’s especially precise in your solar return (birthday) chart, no matter what day you were born.

What these two transits have in common is a rapidly changing world in which you’re being called to participate. Because Pluto in Capricorn primarily influences your relationships — which includes all forms of partnerships — you have to think of everything in relational terms. Capricorn implies a business theme (even in personal relationships, in healthy situations you will have a focus on the structure and the ‘business of the relationship’.) But now the theme is change; and the theme of your career house is change: yes, evolutionary, and deeply necessary, but lacking the stable or dependable structure that you would ideally have.

As with Uranus in Aries, there is something that is trying to come through — a deeper life force. And this is, for many, a difficult energy to handle; most relationships are designed to suppress that force rather than to encourage it. So now, in two highly significant areas of your life, there’s a lot more energy than usual coming through.

One factor in both ‘sides’ of this equation is examining how much power people have in your life, and observing how they got to have that power. In its most positive expression, this aspect pattern is about the experience of soulful and transformative relationships.

At its worst, it’s the persistently destructive kind of codependent relationship from which there seems to be no escape. There are times when this process will seem out of control. That is when you need to start looking at what is actually in your environment and sorting out your options. The current environment favors those who can think on their feet and adapt quickly to changes; your own chart also favors not wasting energy with inappropriate situations, no matter how boldly they present themselves to you.

Let’s go deeper into how you can respond to the Uranus-Pluto square, which I will address in two sections.

The Common Theme: Negotiation

Negotiation may be the second most important skill on Earth besides language, and it’s closely related to language. Most people lack negotiation skills, partly because they grew up in a world where nothing was negotiable. Others struggle because they are afraid to ask, afraid to commit, and afraid to be held accountable. Fear, fear and more fear. However, the midpoint of Uranus-Pluto falls in Aquarius, which is your solar 8th house (8th by whole-sign houses if you are Cancer rising).

The 8th is the house of shared resources. Aquarius is a collective sign. You have the gift of a natural orientation on being able to tap into collective resources, the power of both organizations and of organization, and you are willing to present people with an idealistic plan that they can then go along with. You are also able to contribute to collective experiences in a natural, intuitive way. These talents are a crucial aspect of your leadership skills, no matter how you look at it.

With Aquarius the midpoint of the Uranus-Pluto square, it is where the relationship theme and the career theme resolve into the themes of negotiation and collaboration. This is a fair statement about the world: it is rare that anyone accomplishes anything alone. It is rare that anyone accomplishes anything with just their own resources. Everything involves blended resources, collaboration and interaction — on some level. Yet for you that is more like on every level, since everything you do is going to come back to a question of collaboration.

Collaboration requires a focus on shared values and complimentary goals. That is to say, in whatever you strive to accomplish, there is the necessary element of common ground. And the way you will navigate that common ground is going to be with the skill of negotiation. That’s the game not of give and take, but offer, receive and exchange. It’s the skill of figuring out what values are important to you and which ones you’re willing to forgo for the sake of progress. In order to do this, you have to know your own mind and be sensitive to your own feelings — this way, you can know others, and be sensitive to their feelings, and feel confident of the meeting point.

There is one last interesting element here. We see extremely often that group situations are either nonproductive or become dominated by negative, competitive energy. There is a planet in Aquarius that is close to the exact midpoint: Nessus. While this is a complex, little planet, we can say a few things for sure. It has an orientation on healing the most troublesome dynamics of group exchanges.

Therefore, don’t be discouraged if you find yourself being confronted by this on a fairly regular basis. Negotiation would not be necessary if everyone just agreed; and it would not be a special skill if it were easy to get people to find common ground. Therefore, you’re in a special role. You have the ability to see the problem, and you have the ability to see some potential solutions as a result. You understand that human nature is rarely ‘easy’. You have had many, many experiences of ‘not easy’ in your relationships over the years, and as time has gone on you’ve grown to understand them in ways that others do not — for example, on the level of being able to understand what is lurking behind the difficulties that people present.

Here is where you are uniquely suited to help both yourself and others.

The Other Common Theme: The Maturity Factor

One interesting feature of the sky right now is that there are planets in all of the cardinal signs except for your own. I have not mentioned Saturn in Libra yet, which has compelled you over the past two years or so to get grounded and seek some actual emotional balance in both your inner life and your relationship life. This has been a stabilizing force in a time when the external energies are rising like the electric or hormonal tide. You might sum up Saturn in Libra as the maturity factor.

As of the first of the year, we have about nine more months of Saturn in Libra, which will continue to provide this stabilizing influence. In the last section, I will describe the influence of Saturn entering Scorpio, a water sign.

Back to planets in all the cardinal signs but your own. This is called a T-square, and while it was more exact in 2010 and 2011, it’s still pretty close now. Your Sun or ascendant is to most astrologers the ‘missing leg’ of the T-square, since there are no major planets in Cancer. But there are two influences in Cancer that you should know about.

The first is a hypothetical point called Kronos, which is like a super Saturn, and represents (in your sign) a deep impulse to mature emotionally (and in any sign, to excel beyond expectations). You will thrive if you feed these influences, rather than some other influences. I suggest, in considering this idea, that you be honest as to the extent to which our society rewards immaturity and mediocrity. I don’t mean to lower your standards, but rather point out they are not widely valued. The key with 1st house transits is to identify with the factor involved. This really is about how you see and feel yourself.

Now, it’s not such a good idea to attempt to see and feel yourself in an inauthentic way, but I would propose that the presence of Kronos is a hint that this would be absolutely authentic, and by emphasizing the concepts of maturity and excellence you will tap into this (thankfully) very, very long transit. You could say that this is about the full invocation of the Saturn principle, which is become the authority in your life, and be the example you would most love to follow.

Let’s come back to the water signs at the end of this report.

Healing the Inner Divide: Venus Transit of the Sun

Most people have various inner divisions they are not aware of, and spend a lot of time trying to serve two or more inner masters. What is interesting about your chart is your capacity to stand in two different universes at the same time. Yet this sometimes comes at a cost of energy and to a great extent, time wasted on confusion about what you really want and where you really stand with yourself.

You have Gemini involved with your solar 12th house (12th house by whole signs, if you’re Cancer rising). The sign Cancer has a cyclical quality due to its association to the Moon, but there is a deeper layer that reveals a deeply dualistic inner nature. There are innumerable ways that this manifests, and it’s difficult to pin down — but let’s say that includes any way in which you are only half-committed to your own cause; that you have competing sets of goals; or that you look at the world and see ‘two totally different realities’. This can include how you sometimes feel two different ways about the same thing, unsure of which is true.

Within yourself, you can feel like one person part of the time and another person another part of the time — unsure which of these is going to express itself at any given moment.

As you may be aware, the Venus transit of the Sun — one of the defining events of 2012 (check out the audio on that topic, second under the Top Five Events) — takes place in this house. Now, what is interesting is that Gemini is your 12th solar house (or 12th house by whole-sign houses). The 12th is a veiled and mysterious angle of any chart. And this spectacular event takes place here, right around your birthday.

I will offer two potential interpretations, which I suggest you play on creatively and see where else you can go.

The Venus transit is about connecting both ‘halves’ of your inner self, and then discovering that in doing so, they add up to more than 100%. This is what you could call a synergistic effect — the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. One whole brain is worth more than two halves of a brain; one whole mind is worth a lot more than two halves of a mind. The energy you save, and the holistic perspective you gain, offer much of the increase; yet the real benefit comes from your psychic system to be fully itself. So we have another image of what it means to be yourself.

The second is about awakening from the trance — the waking dream — that seems to embrace most of humanity. While the 12th is the house of veiled consciousness, that’s exactly what most people do with their consciousness — they veil it. Venus transit of the Sun is about fully awakening in the world, and in particular, the human world that is illustrated by Gemini.

Planets in the Water Signs

Yours is a water sign, and activity in any of the water signs influences you profoundly. There are three planets ingressing these signs — Chiron in Pisces (which took hold last year, and continues through 2019), Neptune in Pisces (which briefly visited last year, and then takes hold in February, lasting through 2025).

Chiron and Neptune arriving in your 9th solar house (9th house if you are Cancer rising) is as spiritual as an influence gets, as the 9th addresses our core connection to what some call the ‘higher self’ — something difficult to describe but which would be the approximate equivalent to ‘soul’, only without the religious implications. The point of this house, and putting Chiron in it, is contact.

That contact may have the sensation of sending you on a quest of some kind, which could be distant travel for spiritual purposes; that is, not tourism, not ‘visiting your family’ unless this is a quest to meet people you’ve never met and to visit ancestral grounds. Often 9th house Chiron kinds of travel will take you to sacred spots, ancient temples and related places; again, not for tourism, not to ‘check it out’ but because something is truly calling you.

Add to that Neptune joining Chiron in Pisces and you may morph into a mystic of some kind. This astrology is, in any event, downright clairvoyant for a water sign person. And it will point you on a spiritual journey. There are no atheists with Chiron and Neptune in the 9th house — especially in Pisces. The cautionary note would be, don’t join a cult so fast, and you would be advised against starting one. You may not have clear visions about whether a guru or teacher is legitimate, but the way to tell is that if someone is legit, there will be ample demonstration of that fact (as suggested by Chiron, which always leaves a trail of data). Or perhaps if you are checking out spiritual teachers, or any form of guide, check the Internet for stories and references.

Get the facts. This is not a good time to go on blind faith. Chiron is providing a kind of safety net against the indiscretions of Neptune; Neptune is providing a measure of faith and inspiration that is rare indeed for this world. Get the two working together and you will have both sides of a significant equation.

There is one last planet, which resounds with many of the themes of other transits — Saturn in Scorpio. This takes place in your solar 5th house (5th house by whole-sign houses, if you’re Cancer rising). The 5th is about pleasure; Saturn is said not to be so much fun, but you have some advantages. Mature pleasure is on your agenda — and there are also other planets in water signs that will feed this. One simple way to sum this up is that your fun — principally your sexual fun — must be grounded in something that is real. Real means loving and at least, tangible. Use the power of Saturn to help you filter out everything that you don’t want; everything that might feel good but is not good for you; everything that takes away more than it offers — something especially necessary when addressing situations with people.

The discernment you learn and put to work will more than pay for itself, both in direct rewards and troubles prevented.

Your 2012 annual interpretation also includes an extended audio reading. That is available at the top of this page.

Don’t forget to read and listen to your rising sign. Use this link to purchase additional signs of Revelation. Revolution. Reality Check.

Read the past three years of Cancer annual interpretations for just $19.95. Includes Next World Stories, Cosmic Confidential and Light Bridge. These were designed to be multiple-year interpretations, preparing for and extending into 2012.