Cancer Full Moon
The Full Moon in Cancer on December 25, 2015 occurs on the same day that Uranus in Aries stations direct. It is also the Full Moon that falls equidistant between Lunar Eclipses, in square to both: the total Lunar Eclipse in Aries at 4°38′ that happened September 28, 2015 and the annular Lunar Eclipse in Libra at 3°10′ that will happen on March 23, 2016. There is as a result an electrified quality to this Full Moon that reopens past memories for reprocessing whether you are alone or in a holiday gathering. As we grow older we realize that the story we tell about our life changes across time. Our past is not bound in a fixed form but rather is as fluid in fluctuation as this present, passing moment. Uranus stationing direct at this Cancer Full Moon can break us out of a perspective regarding our life we had managed to convince ourselves was an unchanging truth. Feeling into our emotional bodies in the full light of this lunation, there is something to be found that metamorphoses our viewpoint regarding our past and our trajectory forward, a deeper quality of soul to embody within the vehicle of our body.
In our Northern Hemisphere December 25 is a day in which our Sun is beginning to increase in light, and so there is a loveliness in celebrating the return of light with a Cancer Full Moon. Cancer is the home of the Moon, and so this Full Moon has a potent pull to draw us into our emotional body and the full range of feeling we are receiving. The reflection of our Sun’s light by our Moon signifies our moment to moment consciousness and awareness, for in the waxing and waning lunar cycle we correspondingly experience the creation and destruction of our thoughts and emotions. In a catalytic astrological atmosphere such as today, many are coping with their fear over the dismantling of systems they had believed to be secure by fixating on perceptions and beliefs that bring a feeling of comforting control. This changes the nature of thoughts and feelings from being fluid into a frozen bedrock anchoring repetitive personal patterns.
Uranus is here now to strike and shatter whatever has become overly hardened and crystallized. When Uranus stations following the Full Moon, it will be close to an exact square with Pluto in Capricorn and will reignite the issues related to the square between Pluto and Uranus that have been dominating astrology for the past seven years. Uranus stationing direct brings content forward into conscious awareness much farther back than seven years, however, so much so that memories that feel like they have been buried for lifetimes could erupt from within. This doesn’t mean that everything is going to change overnight in a liberating reverie of Uranus, or that everything will be transformed in a regenerative matrix of Pluto. It does mean that this Full Moon is shining light into the deepest reaches of our ineffable darkness within, and here we may find buried treasure.
In addition to being the domicile of the Moon, Cancer is a sign signifying mothers and the womb that gave birth to all of us, family, ancestors, the vulnerability of our raw emotions, and the protective shell we utilize to shield our feelings from being wounded. Being a Full Moon, of course this means the Sun is in the polarity place of Capricorn, the home of Saturn. Pluto is also in the home of Saturn, and Saturn meanwhile is engaged in square with Neptune that amplifies the dissonance of the square between Pluto and Uranus. Considering all of the associated calamity that can go with the pairs of Pluto-Uranus and Neptune-Saturn being in hard aspects, there is grace to be found through this Cancer Full Moon applying to a trine with Neptune in Pisces. Just like Uranus is shattering the structure of Pluto, Neptune has been dissolving the boundaries of Saturn, and so this Cancer Full Moon could correlate with messages from beyond appearing through the realm of family and our ancestors.
There is in fact a Grand Water Trine found in this Full Moon through the Moon in Cancer, Neptune in Pisces, and Juno conjoining the true location of Black Moon Lilith in Scorpio. The corner of this triangle held by Juno and Black Moon Lilith is rich to contemplate, a fertile field of deep emotions concerning our past and present relationships and times we have felt oppressed, misunderstood, cast out, and projected upon. Yet this Juno, Black Moon Lilith point is also full of desire for burning, shared intimacy with a partner willing to accept us and commit to working to understand us. As we know, the wounds of our childhood oftentimes resurface in our adult relationships and repetitive relational projections and patterns we engage in. This Full Moon holds potential for tapping into our feelings regarding old wounds and a sense of how they impact our current relational behavior.
Uranus stationing direct in Aries holds numerous aspects activating the themes of this Grand Water Trine, as Uranus is in range of an opposition to the mean (averaged) location of Black Moon Lilith while Saturn in Sagittarius is beginning to enter into range of a trine with Uranus (this Saturn-Uranus trine will become one of the major themes in 2016 eventually). Furthermore, Mars in Libra is separating from an opposition with Uranus, while Mercury in Capricorn is separating from a square with Uranus. These aspects are all potent for activating a vital aspect of our essential nature demanding attention and actualization. As a result, we will have strong feelings of wanting this essentiality acknowledged by others and so it will be most helpful to have creative outlets available to transmit the energy through. If overcome by frustration of not being in a position to fully gain or express what you desire, work to find smaller scale steps and situations to get things moving.
While Mars and Mercury are both separating from hard aspects with Uranus at the time of the Full Moon, Mercury in Capricorn is applying to a square with Mars in Libra that further intensifies the atmosphere with potential conflict. While it is possible the square between Mars and Mercury will correlate with arguments and heated rhetoric, it is also an ideal aspect for initiating projects that will require hard work, focused concentration, and collaboration with others. There may be some clashes with others to work through when going after what we desire, but this first quarter square between Mars and Mercury supports planning and developing the structures we will need to have in place to work through any difficulties that could arise.
There is in fact a long range vision that can be accessed at this Cancer Full Moon through a stabilizing trine between Mercury in Capricorn with the conjunction of Jupiter in Virgo with the North Node of the Moon in Virgo. Mercury in Capricorn is an evening star that is in position to synthesize the extraordinary vision that can be activated through Jupiter uniting with the North Node of the Moon in the home and exaltation of Mercury. Mercury is also now within its retrograde shadow zone, and in a couple of weeks on January 5, 2016 during the waning lunar cycle Mercury will station retrograde. As a result of the upcoming Mercury retrograde cycle, this is the first of three trines we will experience between Mercury in Capricorn with Jupiter and the North Node of the Moon in Virgo in the next month and a half. Pay attention to the messages you receive at this Full Moon as they can help you begin to get a sense of the new sense of meaning you can develop during this upcoming harmonious period between Mercury and Jupiter.
The supportive, stabilizing trine between Mercury and Jupiter at this Cancer Full Moon is further accentuated through both Mercury and Jupiter being in a sextile with Venus in Scorpio. Venus in Scorpio is willing to be brutally honest if necessary to get to the bottom line dynamics of whatever relationships we are engaged with at this Full Moon, yet the harmonious sextile Venus forms with Mercury and Jupiter at this time suggests there will be a way to communicate in a manner that will facilitate our partner listening to us rather than dismissing us from a place of defensiveness. These aspects are also supportive for going within and intuitively feeling and envisioning from a place beyond the types of consensus beliefs and morality that repress our ability to create the life we want to live.
Astrologer Jeff Green, who was born with Venus retrograde in Scorpio conjoining his ascendant, wrote in his second Pluto book that Venus in Scorpio individuals radiate an aura “analogous to the eye of the eagle,” as they are “uniquely structured to have the ability to focus on the large picture while at the same time telescopically zooming in on its point of focus” (p. 161). If we work with what Venus in Scorpio is offering through her sextile with Mercury, Jupiter, and the North Node of the Moon, and trine with the South Node of the Moon in Pisces, we can feel within our inner core all of the accumulated past wounds and desires that have created the various relationship projections we have been making, as well as discern the choices and relationships to focus on moving forward. Venus in Scorpio can enflame intense focus on an object of desire, but also making the time to sit with and heal our past wounding will enable us to create healthier, mutually empowering relationships that will support us going after whatever is in alignment with our evolving sense of growth.
Cancer I Decan
The Full Moon falls in the first face of Cancer, a decan associated with the Two of Cups card illustrated above by Pamela Colman Smith. In the image we find two lovers coming together with shared passion on an equal level, with a kundalini caduceus of intertwining snakes and a winged lion arising in the space between their merging desire. Fittingly for the erotic energy found in the symbolism of this image, the first face of Cancer is ruled by Venus. Yet Venus is not only about the romanticism of Eros and Psyche, but rather on a deeper level Venus signifies the inner values and needs that source all of our relationship dynamics with others.
Astrologer Austin Coppock in his book on the decans entitled 36 Faces ascribed the image of “A Mother and Child” to the Cancer I decan, as he wrote that the face holds the hungers of our emotions and biology, the womb that gives birth to us and all of our resulting needs. Coppock analyzed that we find both the nurturing mother in the first face of Cancer as well as the childless, protective figure of Artemis and the principle that as the Moon waxes she gives but as she wanes she takes away. Coppock further connected the themes of mother and child to the pursuit of romantic love found in the Two of Cups since “it is the perfect support, half-remembered from the womb, that gives rise to the human dream of similarly nursing bonds between committed partners” (p. 104):
Though thoroughly romanticized, the actual dynamic entailed herein is a mixture of hunger and sweetness. Love and need blend together here. Yet there is an alchemy, for the energy circulates between the two participants. It is as if the two reside in each other’s wombs, simultaneously devouring and being devoured, yet neither is depleted. It is this miracle of entwined vessels that many long for when they dream of the love that will save and strengthen them. The possibility of this manner of union can be seen in this decan, yet success in this matter requires more than longing (p.105).
Venus in Scorpio is in a whole sign trine to this Full Moon in Cancer, and as the Moon begins to wane through the sign of Cancer it will form an exact trine with Venus. The more we can move away from a compulsive, Scorpio need of Venus to consume and control our relationships and open to feelings focused on understanding our relationships and supporting them with what they need for their own development, the more we can open to the potential available with this Full Moon to develop and deepen the relationships that can become mutually empowering, encouraging, and nourishing.
With Uranus stationing direct in Aries, be ready to receive sudden insight into the relationships you have engaged in across your lifetime, including with family, friends, and romantic partners, and the myriad ways in which the associated needs, desires, and issues created various relationship patterns you became attached to repeating. With awareness and being willing to stay present with these feelings, we can create a shift away from old, outworn patterns toward new opportunities for growth seen through the sextile between Venus in Scorpio with Jupiter and the North Node of the Moon in Virgo.
Quiet friend who has come so far,
feel how your breathing makes more space around you.
Let this darkness be a bell tower
and you the bell. As you ring,
what batters you becomes your strength.
Move back and forth into the change.
What is it like, such intensity of pain?
If the drink is bitter, turn yourself to wine.
In this uncontainable night,
be the mystery at the crossroads of your senses,
the meaning discovered there.
And if the world has ceased to hear you,
say to the silent earth: I flow.
To the rushing water, speak: I am.
–Rainer Maria Rilke, Sonnets to Orpheus II, 29 (translation by Joanna Macy and Anita Barrows)
Coppock, Austin. (2014). 36 Faces: The History, Astrology and Magic of the Decans. Three Hands Press.
Green, Jeffrey Wolf. (2009). Pluto Volume II: The Soul’s Evolution through Relationships. The Wessex Astrologer.