©Eons ago by Donna Cunningham, MSW
Have you noticed that Cancer isn’t a terribly popular sign? People aren’t paranoid about them the way they are about Scorpios. Still, there’s a kind of eye-rolling, head shaking smugness–“At least I’m not a CANCER!”
Granted, it’s hard to get inspired over a sign that has a crab for its symbol. (I’m a Cancer myself, and I’d be really, really grateful if people stopped giving me key chains, plaques, and birthday cards with crabs on them!)
And forget about being named for a disease that’s everyone’s worst nightmare! Not just in English, either, but several languages. (Krebs in German). What’s up with that?
Here’s what I suspect about our unpopularity. The areas of life governed by the Moon are primary motivations of the typical Cancerian. A world rigidly organized around corporations and productivity is biased against people who are too emotional, too hung up in the past, too attached to Mom, too fond of food, and too openly insecure. Cancerians who have those qualities stir up unwanted feelings others are trying hard to contain in order to survive their dehumanized jobs.
Due to vast social changes over the past century, we’ve suffered great losses in the lunar areas of life, so we do our best to detach from them. We pretend they aren’t important and decide that people who are trying to reclaim them are losers.
If you label Cancerian traits as bad or neurotic, the neurosis may have less to do with the sign’s problems than with your own. If it weren’t for our families, we Cancers would get no respect at all!
Many of us have difficulty dealing with lunar issues, so we scapegoat Cancerians and others who are outwardly lunar. If we close off our feelings, we call those who are openly emotional weak. The truth is, it takes far more strength to feel than it does to drug ourselves with any of our society’s many addictions. If we hide from the pain of lost family ties, we scorn those who are attached to family and are sentimental about the past.
Many people are depressed around the holidays–traditional family times–and we mourn lost ties. To get rid of the depression, many of us numb ourselves with food and alcohol. Many of us struggle desperately against our bonds to our mothers, so we put down those who remain close to Mom as “codependent.” Sometimes a loving attachment between parent and child can be one of the major satisfactions of life.
So Many of Them–And Such a Pain in the Neck!
Did you know that there are more Cancerians than almost any other sign? Census figures over the past century consistently show seasonal fluctuations in the birth rate. There is a yearly peak of births that begins with Taurus and lasts through Virgo, but the high point is in Cancer.
There’s a corresponding low that starts with Sagittarius and continues to slide downward, with the low point in Aries.[i] So, if you feel like you know loads of Cancers and rarely meet an Aries, it’s not just your imagination.
These figures are for the U.S., but should hold true of other northern hemisphere countries as well. Birth patterns may be different in the southern hemisphere, where the seasons are reversed.
Census statistics also show that the last Sunday in June is also the date each year when by far the most couples get married. Thus, their wedding charts would have Sun in Cancer.
Additionally, more people are born with Cancer Rising on any given day. Due to astronomical factors, there are signs of long ascension (meaning they are on the Ascendant longer) and of short ascension (meaning they are on the Ascendant a shorter time).
According to Nicholas deVore’s invaluable but rare classic, Encyclopedia of Astrology, Aquarius, Pisces, and Aries are the signs of shortest ascension. Aquarius is only rising for an hour and 26 minutes at New York’s latitude, while Cancer is rising for two hours and 23 minutes. (This varies slightly with distance from the equator. At the latitude of San Diego, it is an hour and 33 minutes for Aquarius and two hours and 10 minutes for Cancer.)[ii]
And Another Thing—Cancerians Mess Up Astrological Research!
These variations should be considered in any astrological research–or in the less formal conclusions you draw. You can’t do a project on wife beating or new home buying and conclude that Cancers and Cancer Risings are more prone to either of these than any other sign.
Or, suppose you decide to do a study to validate Cancer’s fabled longevity and Aquarians’ reputed tendency to live fast and die young. You go to your local senior center and nursing homes, gather birth dates, and, sure enough, there are way more Cancers over 70 than there are Aquarians.
Before you call the tabloids with your findings, adjust for these seasonal fluctuations. There were more Cancers born in the first place!
Take a test to measure the strength of your Moon and just how Cancerian you really are, here: How Strong is your Moon? Here’s the Score?
Update: 10-245-14. This article has consistently been on the list of most visited articles for this blog. Unfortunately, it is most popular with those who think every single Cancerian on earth is a terrible person. I’m closing the comments now because I’m fed up with the nonsense. Donna
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- How to Survive a Pisces Dad—and How I Survived Mine
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- How Strong is your Moon? Here’s the Score?
- Cancerians, Memory and Emotion
- How You Know You’re a Water Sign
- The Moon Signs and their Emotional Habits
- Using the Daily Moon Sign to your Advantage
- How To Use The Moon For A Daily Emotional Weather Report
- Understanding Mercury Aspects to the Moon
- The Void of Course Moon–A Lunar Sabbath?
- Why Transits to the Birth Moon are so Challenging
- How Outer Planet Transits to the Moon Affect Family Life
- Fool’s Gold—the Slippery Slope of the South Node
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[i]. The seasonality of birth rates was discussed in, “Birth, Marriages, Divorces and Deaths for 1989,” in the National Center for Health Statistics’ journal, Monthly Vital Statistics Report, v.38:12, 4/4/90. I read a census publication in the 1970s with the same pattern, so it is consistent over time.
[ii]. deVore, Nicholas. Encyclopedia of Astrology, 1977 edition. New York, NY: Littlefield, Adams, & Co, p.353.