June 20 (Summer Solstice) – July 22, 2017
Cancer season always coincides with the summer solstice. Happy birthday crabbiez!
The Sun sign is a much-celebrated astrological element, usually given more significance than it deserves. Remember – the Sun is just one planet in your star-soup.
The Cancer cycle is a steady one: not too fast, not too slow. Cancer is ruled by the moon, my favorite celestial body. Every day Luna rises at a different hour and location with a different shape and color. In similar fashion, the crab morphs frequently. She is erratic, instilling a deep need for home, security and safety; nostalgic, comfortably uncomfortable; occasionally desperate, longing for childhood.
The Cancer cycle is a sometimes-painful-usually-magnificent trip down memory lane. This is a great time to go home and spend time with family. Even if you are unable to do so, you might feel pulled there anyway. Cancer draws us home not just because she likes to sleep in her own bed and hole up in grandma’s kitchen. She takes us here because being home reminds us of who we are and where we must go. Our roots and childhood lay everything bare: neuroses, bad habits, and forlorn wishes too. They can be used as a clarifying compass for the present moment.
The qualities of the crab are severely undervalued in society. Cancer is calm, nurturing and motherly. She surrenders to the tides of her heart with total romantic abandon, living fearlessly in the misty-mystic flow. She helps us advance on the path of Self-love. Yes, it can be difficult, and this season is often emotionally trying. Take care of yourself. Rest as you process all the information you receive. The crab will test us regularly and with extraordinary vigor. Do as your heart tells you. Sometimes change hurts, but only for a little while, loves.
Cancer is often psychic, whether she realizes it or not. For those who are already very sensitive, it is crucial that you fortify your bubble more frequently during the Cancer cycle. Before leaving home or transitioning from one place to another, visualize a luminous white egg enveloping your body. This allows you to be empathic without taking on any anger, sadness, etc that does not belong to you. When our defenses are weak, we unintentionally/unknowingly absorb negative energies. These little seeds enter undetected and become entrenched in our own psyche. So deft are these karmic transactions that it is difficult if not impossible to sort out what’s ours and what’s not.
In Ayurveda, Cancer is best represented by the kapha dosha. Ayurvedic medicine is divided into three bodily/mental/emotional constitutions, or doshas: vata (air), pitta (fire) and kapha (water and earth). Kapha, as it is watery and earthen in essence, is the slowest moving dosha. Kaphas are generally more lethargic, but they are also more emotional, sensitive, heart-centered and intuitive. Certain physical characteristics of kapha include round moony faces, light eyes, thick hair, soft skin and a heavier build, but it is not always the case that someone with kapha constitution will display these characteristics. Kaphas should avoid eating rich, greasy foods, especially meat and dairy. To increase their energy, kaphas should instead eat spicy foods and red fruits, for example. This is especially true in the winter. In the summer, we are naturally inundated with fiery pitta energy from the sun. If you are curious about your Ayurvedic constitution, there are lots of free tests you can take online. Try searching for “dosha test” or something to that effect.
In the body, Cancer rules the womb, breasts, sternum, stomach, digestive system, pancreas and lower ribs. Cancer Yoga is meant not only to open the heart and awaken your goddess, but also alleviates indigestion and nervous stomach issues. The yogic concept I associate with Cancer is samana. Samana is one of five primary spatial directions or directive forces in the body known as the prana vayus. Samana represents physical/mental/emotional forces which spiral inward. It emanates chiefly from the solar plexus chakra.
Samana translates as “balanced” or “middle” force, so named not only because it lies in the center of the body, but also because it integrates all of the other vayus. Samana governs agni, or “digestive fire.” Other examples of samana: absorption and assimilation of nutrients, intestinal consolidation, metabolism, homeostasis and emotional discernment. To keep samana vayu strong and healthy, try twisting and folding poses to constrict the visceral organs and lower abdomen. Poses performed on the stomach also help spread samana throughout the body.
The Sun joins Mars in Cancer on the first day of this cycle. Luna will be hanging out in Taurus. One day after the solstice, Mercury moves into Cancer too. June 23 is the Super New Moon in Cancer, marking the crabbiest day of the year ;) Mercury and Mars will move on to Leo before the Cancer cycle is over. On the last day of the season, the moon will once again be in Cancer.
The wind is fading now, trickling into nothingness. Raindrops come, softly at first, then steadfast and unyielding, falling on the springtime seeds scattered ‘cross the soul’s forest floor. Guiding waters, suffused with forgiveness. I recommend ample moongazing, and prepare for a potent full moon on July 9!!!
Mantra: I listen to my intuition