Twelve Phases of Human Experience
CANCER - Page 3 of 3
So few persons have understood the mystery of the symbol of Cancer, the Crab! A watery creature, whose movements are regressive or side-stepping, whose evolution has been led into the blind alley constituted by the wearing of a hard shell encasing life — yet a shell which is temporarily shed at every new cycle, one must not forget! A creature of the sea; and the sea always symbolizes the collective or rather the generic Unconscious, the universal Matrix of life.
Here we have just as negative a type of symbolization as we find in Scorpio. One step further and we find the connection between Cancer and the deadly disease of the same name. Why such a negative emphasis? Because the Ancients who built this zodiacal symbolism knew well that the real, positive, God-releasing significance of the summer solstice could hardly be given out. In the Western world we have to go to Christian Scriptures to find more complete references to the summer solstice as to the "Marriage of Heaven and Earth"; of Christ and the Bride, humanity: Christ focused through the mystic Incarnation in man. But in India, if we only understand the real meaning of the concept of Avatar, of ideas which presumably the great Sankaracharya taught — he who was born with the Sun in Cancer — then we would grasp the real significance of this birth of the summer. This might help us to understand our own United States and our potential world-destiny, as we too were born nationally under the Sign, Cancer. Is it not significant indeed that our most dreaded disease today has also been named cancer?
Is the higher destiny of the Cancer type to build a particular, set and rigid home, or is it rather to serve as a focus for a new manifestation of God? Is the United States fulfilled in a narrow nationalism, in homes so badly broken up by crystallized complex-ridden individualism and consequent divorces; or is our world-destiny that of being — at a time when most nations have "fallen in love" with dictators and blood-rooted, home-extolling totalitarianism — a focal point for a new, world-encompassing Avatar-force or Christ-force? Cancer comes nine months before the future Aries. Cancer is the symbol of fecundation — but will it be a divine or a strictly human fecundation? Cancer is man in the God-impregnated state; a Holy Place in which God has descended.
In the usual practice of astrology the type of personality characterized by Cancer is represented as being often dominated by moods and psychic gifts. What is not always realized is that these psychic manifestations are the results of an irruption of the universal life-force into the individualized consciousness which becomes more or less disorganized thereby. Such an irruption can mean a great many things; from the peculiar rapture of passionate love to the upsets of the first weeks of pregnancy, from psychic hallucinations to God-inspired seership, from glamorous lies to Avatarship. And we must not forget the recoil from this irruption of the Night-force, the clinging to a particular form, a particular home, a particular feeling, the jealousies and possessiveness which are the shadows of the integration of one man and one woman — all born of fear, of the terrific fear of what might happen with a "change of focus."
The Cancer type contains all that. It can be the most helpless or the most determined in a strange, silent way. It refers to a time of the year when the Sun moves very slowly; stands still. There is a stillness about it at the same time that there is the possibility of intense light. It is the moment of the longest days; yet astrology makes it ruled by the Moon, waiting until one more sign to glorify in Leo the creative radiance of the Sun.
This is because all great sacraments come when there is a pause, silence and tremor. Man possessed by God, or by the beloved, is at first overwhelmed by the union. Everything must be reconsidered, all motion and motives reversed. And in those short intense nights when the Feast of St. John is celebrated there may be tumult in the outer world, but there is stillness in the Holy Place where Night enfolds Day, and Life is conceived anew.
By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1943 by David McKay Company
and Copyright © 1970 by Dane Rudhyar
All Rights Reserved.
Web design and all data, text and graphics appearing on this site are protected by US and International Copyright and are not to be reproduced, distributed, circulated, offered for sale, or given away, in any form, by any means, electronic or conventional.
for full copyright statement and conditions of use.
Web design copyright © 2000-2004 by Michael R. Meyer.
All Rights Reserved.