New Moon Solar Eclipse in Cancer

Posted by on Jun 21, 2020 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Summer Solstice greetings! As the sun stands still at its zenith for three days, and we experience the longest days of the year in the northern hemisphere, we enter an important portal in the astrological calendar, the entry of the Sun in the cardinal water sign, Cancer. The intensity of this year’s solstice could not be more apparent as it coincides with a total solar eclipse over this weekend’s new moon in Cancer. We may well sense powerful seeds of change around us, and feel moved to respond to them, even while the way forward seems far from clear. That seems to be the terrain we are living in now. Mercury has, this week, joined the growing number of planets in retrograde motion, prompting us to step back, think again, question our beliefs, go deeper with our research, and with our contemplation of truth. I feel a budding, vulnerable impulse, within the uncertainty of it all, as I sit down to write this now. Let’s see what comes…

The new moon solar eclipse occurs at 7.41am (UK time) on Sunday 21st June, with the Sun and Moon conjunct in the first degree of Cancer. Cancer is about roots, it is about tribe, it is about belonging. As a medicine for the soul, it resonates with a need that runs deep in us, like an underground stream which beckons us back to its source. It begs some form of retreat. It is an urge to turn back to the origins of things, to know where we come from, to know how things came to be the way they are. And this is as true at a personal level as it is when viewed politically and collectively. A new moon in Cancer is a time to reflect deeply on what really matters to us, beyond all the distractions and interruptions to the rhythms of life. What is it that really feeds your soul? And what if the true purpose of your life was to find your way home and help others to do the same? To return to the place of origin and see that place again with new eyes, perhaps?

A solar eclipse brings a darkening and deepening of the soul’s longing. The power of the lunar energy, and its urge to remember, to protect, and to return overcomes the vitality of the solar life force that brings light to the present and seeks to make everything anew. At such a time, the presence of the past is palpable. Add into the mix the homing instinct of Cancer, the sign ruled by the Moon, and that need to connect with a true sense of belonging seems stronger than ever. It is not enough under this energy just to say ‘let’s face what is in front us and move on’, for what is happening has to be traced back to its roots in order for us to really connect with it.

The Cancer energy compels us to pay attention to history, to how our national, cultural and spiritual identity is shaped by what has gone before. Essential issues of civil rights and personal freedoms that strike to the very core of our humanity are absolutely to the fore in our world right now, and we cannot satisfactorily separate the personal from the political. As a white male living pretty comfortably in an affluent European country, I benefit from countless privileges which, if I were to trace them back, I would have to acknowledge are established on the back of centuries of patriarchal control, slavery and injustice. I can’t change that fact, and if I experience guilt around it, then I know I’m better off practising self-empathy and compassion, for that guilt serves no-one and it is utterly disempowering. What helps is the recognition of the fragility that I share with every other human who is pricked by conscience and a connection with soul.

The danger it seems to me, at a time like this, is that we close ranks, revert to our familiar prejudices, become overly suspicious of those who belong to a different group and don’t seem to share our experience of life. We suppose that they could not possibly understand what we have been through, the way we have been marginalised, or the particular hurt that we feel, and so we put up our shields. It concerns me greatly the way social media platforms seem more like battlegrounds right now, lines being drawn between groups with different views and increasing divisions occurring within those groups. The shadow of Cancer is a form of protectionism, based around deep-rooted patterns of fear. The shadow instinct persuades us to shore up our hard Cancerian shells, but as we do the precious, vulnerable inner core of our being becomes ever more remote from us. It is an incredibly complex issue of course, because we also need to draw strength from those groups with whom we identify, the nurturing feeling of being recognised and accepted by our people, and our land. But we also need to remain open enough to be penetrated by the deeper truth of the soul that runs through every life.

The healing path is surely in the disclosure of that the vulnerable core. What if the shell were expressed not as a barrier to defend us from a perceived threat, but rather as a boundary which can be traversed under the right conditions; a safe space or container within which our vulnerabilities could be openly shared? Then we may have a chance to discover a deeper bond, a solidarity that is in no way apparent when we pre-judge one another according to our hard shell of allegiances, beliefs and prejudices. It is obviously not a level playing field, some groups are way more privileged than others in all sorts of ways, and this has to be recognised, and the imbalances of power taken into account. But neither does such apparent priviliege make one immune to suffering. We are all wounded, and we all suffer in different ways. And healing begins when we open our hearts, share our wounds, and listen with empathy and compassion. It begins with the truthful disclosure of my experiences of shame, oppression, marginalisation and exclusion, even while they may be very different from yours. And from touching into that deep place of soul, you and I can encounter something of that underground stream, whose current carries us all home.

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