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Solar Eclipse and Cancer New Moon

Updated: Jun 20, 2020

Be shapeless, formless,

like water.

When you pour water in a cup,

it becomes the cup.

When you pour water in a bottle,

it becomes the bottle.

When you pour water in a teapot,

it becomes the teapot.

Water can flow

or it can crash.

Become like water, my friend.

Bruce Lee

The Cancer New Moon and "Ring of Fire" Solar Eclipse on June 21 at 2:41 am EDT takes place at 0 degrees Cancer just hours after the Summer Solstice and will be visible across Asia, the Middle East and Africa. This occurs as five planets are retrograde and Jupiter is moving towards its second exact conjunction with Pluto, creating one very powerful eclipse that emphasizes acts of care and nurturance.

The Eclipse is Aligned with the Fixed Star Betelgeuse in the Constellation of Orion

Orion, one of the largest and most recognizable constellations in the sky, was known to ancient Egyptians as Osiris, the god that died and was reborn every year with the annual flood. Like clockwork, on the heliacal rising of Orion/Osiris in the sky, the Nile flooded.

The Solar Eclipse speaks to a flood of cosmic energy that will inundate earthly life, washing away the old, and ushering in growth and aliveness. The Nile flood brought the silt and the clay that gave Egyptians all the raw material they needed to build homes, plant new crop, make pottery and provide for the abundance for the coming year. For us, we may see evidence of this in external circumstances such as a strong hurricane season, but ultimately the flood is felt through allowing our feelings to open pathways to nurturance. We may feel the flood as a compelling urge to nurture the areas associated with Cancer: safety, belonging, home and/or family as a way to harness and channel the life-giving energy of the inundation.

Before each annual flood of the Nile, the river was dried up. Life felt barren and people were rationing what little they had. We may be feeling dried out in our lives, wondering where the next wave of inspiration, resource and renewal will come from. If we are attached to a keeping what we have or a viewpoint of what we want, we may feel a sense of loss of what is cleared and washed away. But we can take heart, knowing that it is all in preparation for something else to take root.

The Solar Eclipse promises a continued flooding of information and dramatic events, and also the raw materials needed to renew our lives. In Egypt today, a great dam has been built to catch and hold the flood to control when and how much water comes through. It seems practical to reduce the destructive qualities of a flood and create a way to integrate the precious water in doses. But it is not natural. And for the flood of this eclipse, rather than seek to dam or protect ourselves, there is an invitation to welcome an influx of energy that can clear away the hollow, stale and outworn in favor of renewed vitality and possibility.

In moving with the incoming tide, the invitation is to welcome increased expression of our sensitivity and vulnerability. Rather than pushing against the tide, we can move with the tide, acknowledging that change is a constant. The human tendency to hold on to what we have does not leave an open hand to welcome what may be coming toward us. We favor the familiar over the unknown. 2020 is all about venturing into unknown territory and restructuring life in a substantive way, and so we need an available and open hand to engage what emerges.

If we become like water, like the water of the Cancer eclipse, we can let go of who we think we are and what we have determined life is about and open to new experience and perspective.

If we have no peace

It is because we have forgotten

We belong to each other

St. Theresa of Calcutta

The Factors of a Solar Eclipse coinciding with the Summer Solstice

Or for folks down under: The Winter Solstice

Ring of Fire Eclipse: The Moon, in its orbit, is at its furthest declination and so appears smaller. So, during the June 21 eclipse it will not fill the circumference of the sun and we will see a ring of light around the eclipse. 'Annual eclipse' is the more formal name for this type of eclipse.

0 degrees Cancer: The beginning of a Cardinal sign (Cancer, Capricorn, Aries, Libra) denotes the world axis. An eclipse at one of these points portends change, new beginnings, shifts in consciousness, and one or more dramatic events on the world stage. That the New Moon and eclipse takes place within hours of the solstice further emphasizes the potent energies of this weekend.

Summer Solstice: When the Sun arrives at 0 degrees of cardinal signs, this marks either a solstice or an equinox. A Solar Eclipse happening at the time of the solstice does not happen very often and portends significant events on the world stage that will unfold over the next six months. The last time we had an eclipse on the Summer Solstice was in 2011 and the event of September 11 a few months later echoed throughout the world and had lasting repercussions. The coming events may not mirror the collapse of the World Trade Center, but there is likely some event that shake us up.

North Node Eclipse: The Nodal axis is always near the Sun and Moon at an Eclipse. It is notable that while the Sun/Moon are in Cancer, the nodal axis is in Gemini/Sagittarius (not Capricorn/Cancer) and is located at the degree of the Galactic Center (a place where primordial creative energy streams into the universe). The eclipse nodes point to a collective agenda and as North Node eclipse we are being pushed to entertain new information and conversations that run counter to what we believe and have come to know.

For example, with the Black Lives Matter movement, we are receiving more information and stories of the history of black people in this country that has, for many, changed their understanding and beliefs around black history. Others are looking at information on vaccines or 5G and relooking at beliefs around this. Michael Moore’s knew movie invited us to rethink our beliefs and understandings about the green movement, inviting us to ask new questions about sustainability. Cancer is about home, family and country and so ultimately we are being given new awareness that can shift our beliefs and positions on these things.

Beginnings: June 21 is a seminal moment of inception that seeds something new into our life and into the collective. New Moons are the beginning of a monthly cycle, where the potential of the coming month is germinated. Solar Eclipses, when the Sun goes dark, bring us into the womb of becoming where the seed is quickened. The Solstice marks a point of culmination, and is the moment we begin to turn our attention to what is next in our life that results in a departure or adjustment to the direction we were heading. With the theme of beginning echoed in the multiple astrological events, I invite us to attune to what is being quickened and set an intention around this.