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CANCER 2018 - hard & soft in balance

When I was a young punk in the '90's, astrology was not cool. In my disenfranchised circles, we referred to such things as "woo-woo" in reaction to the purple tie-dyed, commercialized version of the New Age movement that was prevalent then.

Although the punk world had by then softened considerably since the '80's - when punk fans pelted their favorite bands with beer bottles, globs of spit, and knuckle punches in violent devotion - we still armored ourselves with our convictions of right and wrong that we sometimes brutally held ourselves and each other to, and with a fierce refusal to show any soft spots or weaknesses. We also loved each other like family, but you know how crazy families can be.

Our collective hiding of vulnerability inspired many hurtful incidents among us. Even so, no matter what happened within and around me, I did not cry in my 20's. Not even the day I found out my good friend had died. My friends informed me half tentatively, half off-handedly, not knowing if I had been close with that person or not - since we all drifted in and out of each others' lives like ungraspable particles of gas. I heard the news, nodded, walked out the door and down an alley, down a street, down another alley, and on for hours, inviting some emotion to rise up in me, hoping some cleansing liquid could fall from the sky or my eyes or somewhere, but there was nothing.

"Generation X," as we were called, came of age at a time when many planets were active in Capricorn - a sign known for its tough exterior, its no-nonsense attitude, and its tow-the-line glare at its comrades. This month, we experience the polarity of this hard-edged sign and its tender opposite: Cancer. We straddle these two worlds - on the one side, a deep sensitivity combined with a need to belong and to retreat into our tenderness, and on the other side a need to not be so swayed by our emotions so we can push on and push through the difficulties we experience. Our work this month is to find balance between these two extremes.

Sun in Cancer: 6/21/18 - 7/22/18

Herbs for the Cancer 2018 month:

In addition to the general Cancer herbal recommendations in the link above, I also recommend drop doses (1 drop, 3x/day throughout the month) of Motherwort tincture to nourish your nerves, and support your ability to parent yourself, both in a nurturing way and in a way that gently urges you to push yourself through to completion of the tasks before you.

Mars Retrograde: 6/26/18 - 8/27/18

Mars retrogrades occur about every two years, and indicate it's time to realign your desires, intentions and actions. This retrograde occurs in Aquarius and in the last couple degrees of Capricorn, so we'll be restructuring how we attend to our goals and our communities.

Mars stimulates us to take action, but first there is some often subconscious desire that inspires our action. The power of Mars is cumulative, for many small actions build towards monumental results, as illustrated in this proverb:

Sew an act. Reap a habit.

Sew a habit. Reap a character.

Sew a character. Reap a destiny.

We can use this retrograde as an opportunity to shift our destiny:

If you could attain any destiny, what would it look & feel like?

What actions can you take now that would move you towards that destiny?

What individuals & communities support you in attaining that destiny?

What actions and/or relationships work against your desired destiny?

Full Moon in Capricorn: 6/27/18 at 9:53 pm PDT

This full moon is tense and tender, hard and fast. The pull to stay home in your pajamas or hide in the bathtub until the water goes cold, and the pull to get out there and make stuff happen illuminates some deep pain we all carry around this tension. The good news is you have an opportunity at this moon to receive some resolving insight into that pain, some healing balm of illumination. Court that:

What would healthy indulgence look and feel like?

What would a healthy amount of pushing yourself look and feel like?

How can you create structures that nourish and support you as you make your worldly strides?

How comfortable are you with speaking up for your needs?

For astrology nerds - this full moon is tightly conjoined with Saturn in Capricorn, and Chiron squares the sun-moon polarity from Aries. This creates an uncomfortable T-square configuration that pushes us to grow by stretching us in several directions at once. We are challenged to create our own internal balance at this full moon.

Solar Eclipse in Cancer: 7/12/18 at 7:48 pm PDT

This is the first of three summer eclipses (the next two are on 7/27 and 8/11). This eclipse is also a super new moon, the closest new moon of the year, and it comes with an oppositional boost from destroying-regenerating Pluto. Put that all together, and here's what you get:

1. It's time to update and improve your self-care.

This means both letting go of outdated modes of coping, and replacing them with truly nourishing activities, relationships, dietary adjustments, and replenishing rest.

2. Feel the Stretch, and let it expand you beyond your current limitations.

Despite a strong need to tenderly care for ourselves and our nearest and dearest, we'll also feel irresistible pulls to accomplish things out in the world.

In addition, what's happening in the world will inspire strong urges to retreat. It's not a matter of choosing one of these sides over the other, but rather attending to both as best you can.

3. LET GO. Let some things come to an end. Look for opportunities to release both the large and the small. Especially let go of those things that hold power over you.

Let go of some external things - a relationship, a job, a sick plant you just can't save, a favorite shirt that is so you but also stained and thread-bare...

And let go of some internal things - a self-limiting belief, a grudge, an attachment to something or someone that left your life long ago...

Hint: A sense of humor can sometimes be the first step in letting go of otherwise sticky or heavy situations.

Next month...

We get our summer installment of Mercury in retrograde, plus a total lunar eclipse and another partial solar eclipse. As always, feel free to schedule a consultation if you need some support and perspective. Here's wishing you a nourishing and regenerating month, Rae


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