Featured Image: The Moon. Alternate Title: Luna. Series: The Seven Planets, pl. 7. Johann Theodor de Bry (Flanders, Liège, 1561-1623). Etching. Courtesy of the Los Angeles Community Museum of Art.
Cancer Season 2020: General Vibe
Welcome to the Summer Solstice, the time when the Sun makes its ingress into the sign of Cancer heralding the start of summer in the Northern Hemisphere. When the Sun travels through Cancer each year, it is an annual 30-day period that highlights domestic life (your house, home and family life). It is a time when we feel a greater need to retreat from the world in order to spend more time at home. During the previous Gemini season, we were restless and so we got out of the house and socialized more. But this trend slows down now. For the next few weeks, you might start to lose interest in busy socializing, preferring instead the close company of your family or inner circle. Many of us will crave quieter times and privacy and will be retreating back to the security of our dwellings once again. This retreat back to the home is further emphasized by a retrograde Mercury in the sign of Cancer whose energy helps us to return to resume home or family projects that we previously started.
In some places in the world, this desire to retreat back to the home might be due to another flare of Covid-19, but even in those places with relatively little Covid-19 action, the desire to turn inward and head home will still be in effect.
For the next few weeks, pick a Cancerian project to nurture: gardening, cooking, home improvement or projects with family members are good choices, as is anything that tends to the well-being of children and babies. Cancer energy is a nurturing energy that is useful for creating a safe and protective environment to help something grow and thrive. So you can apply this energy to yourself, your family, your home, your pets, your plants, your friends, your emotional health or whatever needs support, nourishment and growth in your life right now.
If you find yourself a little more weepy, sentimental or just more emotionally sensitive, that’s the Cancer energy. Let the feelings wash over you and out. A few tears can be a cleansing release right now.
Five Retrograde Planets
Cancer Season opens with 5 planets in retrograde motion: Mercury retrograde in Cancer, Venus retrograde in Gemini, Jupiter and Pluto retrograde in Capricorn and Saturn retrograde in Aquarius. Other than causing some delays and setbacks, these retrogrades ask us to pause for a moment and retreat in order to reflect on what we are doing and where we are going. Rather than trying to strike ahead with ambitious new plans, it is a good time to slow down to internalize and digest all that has happened in the past few months.
Venus has been retrograde since May 13th but will station to go direct on June 24th/25th. If you have been having a difficult time with matters pertaining to love/romance, education or finances because of this retrograde, then things might start to improve a little. You might start to glimpse the light at the end of the tunnel. But note that Venus will not be completely out of her shadow zone until the end of July. So between June 25th and July 29th, you might experience some echoes of the issues you were wrestling with when Venus was retrograde. These echoes are your last opportunity to resolve any outstanding love, financial or educational problems that developed over the past few months.
People who work in fields related to The Arts such as artists, musicians, dancers or actors might also feel a bit of relief after June 24th/25th. These professions were severely hampered by the pandemic, as exemplified by Venus Retrograde in Gemini. But when Venus goes direct, these restrictions might start to slowly loosen up and opportunities to work might start to reappear again. Progress will be slow, however until after July 29th when Venus is completely out of the shadow zone.
Mercury stations on July 11th to go direct and will be out of the shadow zone by July 26th. This should help to start unclog matters having to do with education, communication, transportation and local travel. This also suggests that after July 11th, Covid-19 restrictions on localized travel might open up a bit, allowing for more freedom to move about.
Note that when Venus and Mercury go direct life might feel a bit less restrictive regarding Covid-19. However it doesn’t automatically mean that it is a total Green Light and everything will be normal again. Saturn’s passage through Aquarius this year and next suggests that Covid-19 restrictions are far from being over, even if we do get to enjoy a few months in the summer and fall where things appear to be a little more normal. I am planning to stay vigilant and I suggest you do the same from now throughout 2020 and 2021.
Eclipse Season Continues
This year’s Eclipse season began back on June 5th with a lunar eclipse. Now, Cancer season opens with an important Solar Eclipse on June 20th/21st (depending on where you live). I wrote about both these eclipses in my previous article on Gemini Season, so you can read more there.
On July 4th/5th we finish off Eclipse season with a lunar eclipse at 13 degrees Capricorn. The Sabian symbol for this eclipse is pretty interesting so I will copy it here in full:
AN ANCIENT BAS-RELIEF CARVED IN GRANITE REMAINS A WITNESS TO A LONG-FORGOTTEN CULTURE.
KEYNOTE: The will to unearth, in our culture as well as in any culture, what has permanent value, and to let go of nonessentials.
At a time when in nearly every land men are questioning and challenging the validity of traditional beliefs and customary attitudes, it becomes necessary to separate permanent values and great principles or symbols from the many individual habits and the socio-political developments which more often than not have perverted or even negated the original ideals of the culture. We must strive to free these ideals from the wild growth of personal and class selfishness, from the greed and ambition so prevalent in human nature, and learn to appreciate the excellence of what is the immortal seed-foundation, as well as the spiritual harvest, of any culture — and by extension of every sustained and complete work produced by a man’s indomitable effort to achieve creative perfection.
In this fourth stage symbol we are shown the procedure which enables us to gain a deep and thorough appreciation of socio-cultural processes in their most enduring forms. What is needed is a penetrating and courageous insight founded upon a valid HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE. This applies to the past of an individual’s life as well as to the history of a nation or a group.
With this particular degree point being eclipsed, it highlights the need for humanity to let go of non-essentials now. Culturally, we might be clinging to tradition instead of letting go of values, ideas, practices and habits that are well past their due date. These old values are no longer helpful to us or the world, and are becoming increasingly harmful. Traditional social beliefs and cultural patterns that glorify empty consumerism, harmful business practices, the destruction of the natural environment and economic systems that consolidate wealth in the hands of a few while they shore up social stratification, selfishness, racism, patriarchal practices, political authoritarianism and species-ism are being rooted up now and re-examined on a global scale. This eclipse is heralding the need to just Let Them Go.
This eclipse also suggests the urgent need for humanity to maintain a sense of historical perspective. History is full of warnings about what our future holds if we refuse to learn from the mistakes of the past. If we refuse to compare and measure today’s political, economic and social actions with those taken in the past, we are doomed to repeat the brutal and tragic consequences of fascism, racism, political corruption, economic collapse and war. Only this time, recovery will not be as easy as it was in the past because the environment currently hangs on the brink. We have to work hard to place ourselves in historical context and learn from that; we are running out of time and there is no longer a wide margin for errors anymore.
Saturn re-enters Capricorn
Saturn leaves the sign of Aquarius (progressive values/the future) and re-enters the sign of Capricorn (conservative values/the past) on July 1, 2020 where it will reside until Dec 16, 2020. For the next few months, it might seem like things are going back to the way they used to be and that the old conservative power players in politics and economics are making a come back. Crony capitalists, corrupt politicians and the rotting socioeconomic systems they support might seem to gain strength once more. Don’t be surprised if you see a spike in toxic forms of conservatism, authoritarianism, abusive law or police/military enforcement, classism, fascism, racism, hetero-sexism and misogyny etc.
Saturn’s brief entry into Aquarius has attempted to swing the world zeitgeist from conservative to progressive. The motto of the pandemic was “we are all in this together,” (which is about as Aquarian as a motto can get) and as I write this, people of all colors are linking arms worldwide and marching in the streets for racial equality and justice. There is a sense of community and cohesion. But Saturn is now temporarily leaving Aquarius and going back into Capricorn. Thus, progressive values, liberal political movements and humanitarian social movements might seem to lose ground, trip and falter. Efforts at healing the planet might suddenly get railroaded or collapse. But don’t despair. This is just a brief moment, and those progressive principles will be back in earnest in December 2020 when Saturn returns to Aquarius (and Jupiter enters Aquarius).
After July 1st, society might become nervous about bringing in something new so the tendency might be to try to back track to the way things were before. Try to resist this pull because the old traditional systems are corroded and collapsing and are doomed to fail. Remember, this is the last gasp of the existing toxic patriarchal socioeconomic and political structure before Pluto enters Aquarius in 2024 and starts to transform it.
Saturn in Aquarius allows us a hint of what lies in the future when Pluto enters Aquarius in 2024. Currently, an autonomous zone (police-free zone) is forming in Capitol Hill, Seattle. Movements such as this, which are motivated by humanitarian principles rooted in social equality, democracy and group action of like-minded people are the hallmark of Aquarius. And this is just a hint of what we can expect to see developing after the year 2024. Pluto’s journey through Aquarius will begin a long new chapter in history as humanity starts to experiment with new kinds of social structure that are less hierarchical, that focus on equality and give more power to the masses.
Saturn re-entering Capricorn might also suggest that society generally decides to take a little break from worrying so much about the Covid-19 pandemic. We might become a little more relaxed than we were and behave in a less vigilant fashion. This is also temporary. Starting around mid-December, we might be experiencing a restrictive environment once again when it comes to group gatherings, either because Covid-19 is on the move again, or something else will be forcing us to limit or control our social and group interactions.
Mars Enters Aries
Mars enters Aries, his domicile, on June 28, 2020 and will spend a total of six months in that sign.
Mars rules assertiveness, ambition, anger, aggression, war, conflict and sex and being in domicile makes his power of expression more heightened, unequivocally direct and unflinching. This will be a very long transit for Mars because he will be going retrograde in September. Expect six months of volatile energy affecting the globe, world leaders and everyone around you. Throughout this time, Mars will be forming a conjunction with his equally war-mongering sister, Eris, and will form squares to Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn. These squares begin in earnest in August and will continue into early next year of 2021.
To get an insight on what might happen in politics, pay attention when Mercury squares Mars around July 8th. Watch out for angry words traded between world leaders, especially coming from the USA and China. Leaders speaking angry or hostile words might utter them casually without the intention that they actually lead to anything, but the verbal conflict might spiral out of control and turn into something more volatile in August when the Mars squares begin.
The squares Mars will be making to Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto will be first quarter squares. In Evolutionary Astrology, we view these squares as a “crisis of action.” This is not a passive aggressive “sit around and stew” kind of energy. Rather, the discordant energies will prompt us to rise up and meet the challenges we face by doing something about them–by rising up and taking action.
In August, Mars will start by squaring Jupiter and Pluto, whose energies will egg on aggressive action, perhaps done in retaliation of some perceived slight. Anger and conflict might escalate until late August when Mars squares Saturn. The square to Saturn will create blockages and frustration of goals.
World leaders will likely react to this frustration energy in one of two ways: 1) by putting on the brakes in order to cautiously consider a potentially harmful action (a potentially positive use of this energy) or 2) attempting to blindly force their will on the situation by applying more force than is required, which causes the entire situation to break or rupture (a very negative and potentially damaging use of the energy). Let us pray that this situation does not involve military action.
How will the Mars Transit affect Me Personally?
Check out what house Aries is located in your chart (between 15 and 28 degrees) because this is the area of life that you might stir up, become more assertive about or decide to push forward with some specific actions. It is also the area of life where you might experience conflict with others, from now until the end of the year.
The positive energy of Mars’s transit through Aries: heightened physical and sexual energy, heightened assertiveness and boldness, taking action or taking the initiative, putting yourself first and breaking away from things that are not good for you.
Mars in this cardinal sign can feel like a jolt of energy that makes you want to turn a new page or start a new chapter in life. But remember-whatever you start, do it before Mars turns retrograde in early September. And be prepared to have to go back and re-do some things over again. This “re-do” action is also emphasized by the fact that Mars will be transiting in a cardinal sign. Evolutionary astrologers view cardinal signs such as Aries as being especially prone to the tendency to take “2 steps forward, 1 step back.”
The challenging side of Mars’ transit through Aries: increased anger, increased conflict, increased selfishness often tipping into extremes. Uncontrolled fury. Burning hatred. Impulsive expressions of anger, selfishness or physical violence. Burning down valuable bridges in a fit of emotion. Stress. Doing unnecessary damage to relationships. Becoming overly competitive. Accidents that break things, perhaps your own bones. So be careful.
Stay on the lookout for signs of these things in yourself and others. Learn to catch yourself before you reach the boiling point. Learning effective self-calming techniques can help a lot so you don’t accidentally set your life on fire.
If you were born in the Pluto in Libra generation (between 1971 and 1984) then Mars’ transit through Aries will challenge you repeatedly and trigger your soul to evolve in a rapid way. This will largely be accomplished via conflict. Mars’ transit will especially challenge your notions about equality and fairness. You were born on planet Earth to transform prevailing notions of class, race, sex, gender, able-bodiedness, age-ism and species-ism. Your job is crucial right now. You are here to stand up against discrimination of all types and call out unfair practices. Now is your time to step up and help humanity transform. It takes courage to fight for what you believe in. You probably don’t like causing conflict and you usually avoid facing disapproval. But you have to be courageous now and fight for the rights of others. It’s your special gift to humanity. It’s your time to shine. You will be the arrow point of this movement, while the rest of us will have your back. So go for it.
See you all in Leo Season.