Ruled by The Moon
Key Phrase: “I Feel”
The Cancer Sign
Cancer is the fourth zodiac sign and it is ruled by the Moon. This water sign can be best understood by reflecting on the Moon’s mythology for a moment. From the beautiful goddess ruling over the phases and shifts in our emotions to the mother of all things, we find that Cancers are the embodiment of it all. Deep, emotional, maternal: with moods that seem to change with the tides. Cancers tend to take care of those they love. They can even be a little smothering if they aren’t careful to give loved ones their space.
Cancers tend to be self-starters and aren’t usually afraid to assert themselves when needed. In fact, they have to be careful to not allow aggression to take over. Cancer’s water nature can go from a warm pond to a tsunami at a moment’s notice. Then, just like a crab, may retreat into their shells if hurt. However, they are a deeply loving and emphatic sign whose loyalty is unwavering. Sensitive and yet charismatic, they often have a great sense of humor and possess wisdom beyond their years from a young age.
In the Zodiac, Cancer is the fourth of 12 astrological signs. Ruled by the Moon and symbolized by the Crab, Cancer is best known for being deeply nurturing. This Water Sign is often a sensitive homebody with great emotional depth.
Cancer is the 31st largest constellation and can be seen in the Northern Hemisphere. Its name means “the crab” in Latin. It was first catalogued by Greek astronomer Ptolemy in the second century CE. Even though we no longer use the actual constellation in Tropical Astrology as a Sign in horoscopes today, our horoscopes signs are still based on the general myths behind the constellations and the area of the sky they inhabit as seen from here on Earth.
Cancer is the cardinal Water sign of the three Water element signs in the Zodiac. The other two Water signs are Scorpio, which is a fixed sign, and Pisces, which is mutable. Water signs reside in the water element of the Zodiac calendar, but each sign exhibits their element in a different way. As the cardinal water sign, Cancer is a leader. Water signs are known to be emotional and reserved. They often have a deep need for security. For Cancer, the water sign manifests by easily attaching to others, craving security within relationships, and creating a cozy home space. Cancers also value financial security but often self-soothe their strong emotions with retail therapy, a tendency that will need to be monitored so that soothing shopping doesn’t negatively impact stability.
Cancer is also associated with the color silver. Silver, which can be associated with the Moon’s cool tones, is a calm and healing color, but it can also be associated with deception and danger. Silver is the most powerful color for Cancer, and it can represent the crab’s need for success and for creating deeper meaning in life.
The history of astrology is linked to a mythological story behind each constellation. The astrological constellation of Cancer is rooted in Greek mythology. This constellation honors the legend of the crab that Greek goddess Hera sent to distract Hercules during the fight with Hydra, the many-headed sea serpent. Not to be distracted, Hercules kicked the crab into the stars where Hera placed it in the night sky to honor its efforts. Because it failed to distract Hercules, Hera placed the constellation where there were no bright stars in the sky–honoring the crab’s efforts while drawing attention to its failure. It hardly seems fair that the crab would be punished after the beating it received from Hercules, but that’s Greek gods (and goddesses) for you.
Cancer Sun, Moon, Or Rising: Why It Matters
We may automatically think that our Zodiac sign is the one associated with the day we were born. This commonly known one is actually our sun sign. Cancer sun signs are those born between approximately June 21st and July 21st. Sun signs explain our core identity, goals, identity, behavioral tendencies, and instincts. Most people read their sun sign when reading their daily horoscope. It’s the easiest of the signs to identify because all we need is our birthday.
Rising signs and moon signs also require the date of birth but need the time and location of birth as well to determine the exact transits. A natal chart will determine the sun, moon, and rising signs. It will also show the 12 houses of astrology and how they appear in various aspects of our lives. This can offer insights into the way we see the world around us. A natal chart is like a map of the celestial bodies at the moment we are born. It can illustrate the possibilities of our lives as well as the challenges.
Moon signs are representative of our internal identity. Moon signs encompass instincts, emotions, needs, and behavioral tendencies. A Cancer Moon sign is deeply intuitive and can quickly read the room. This is a powerful skill, but it also means that a Cancer Moon can be easily influenced by the energy of their surroundings. A Cancer Moon is likely to experience fluctuating emotions and need the deep and consistent support of friends and family. Those who possess a Cancer Moon in their natal chart should make sure that they surround themselves with those they can trust and avoid keeping negative or fickle friends in their inner circle.
Rising signs represent how other people perceive us–or how our inner way of being appears on the outside. A Cancer Rising is likely to be ruled by their emotions and have difficulty handling rejection. Those with Cancer Rising in their natal chart can be deeply tied to hearth and home. They are often defensive, possessive, and reserved. An individual who is Cancer Rising may be best served to remember not to hold onto those they love too tightly, to keep an open mind, and to build strong social support.
Understanding celestial transits won’t predict the future, but it can provide insights that can help with personal growth. The purpose of astrology and of understanding the history of astrology is to explore our personality, identify our strengths, and even help us work on our challenges. Horoscopes are useful when it comes to learning more about ourselves and others, but they won’t help you win the lottery or provide specific instruction on what your next move should be. Horoscopes aren’t about predictions but possibilities.
It’s possible to be a Cancer sun sign, Cancer moon sign, Cancer rising sign, or a combination of these star signs. Knowing our sun, moon, and rising astrological signs can provide valuable insights into ourselves and others. The purpose of astrology is to provide a more nuanced perspective of our lives.
Crabs tend to be nurturing, emotional, and sensitive. They can be deeply intuitive, easily reading the moods of others. Oftentimes, they reflect the moods they pick up on, so don’t be surprised if the energy given to Cancer is given right back. They also value growth. Their emotions may fluctuate, but they are constantly challenging themselves to be better.
This cardinal water sign values home, family, and connection. They love quickly, deeply, and hard, and Crabs don’t let go easily. In fact, if they aren’t careful, they can smother the ones they love with an overabundance of nurturing. Cancer sun signs crave security and reassurance in relationships, and they are unlikely to enjoy casual relationships because of their ability to easily attach to others.
Cancer’s sensitivity makes them a valued friend, but it can also lead to them feeling more easily offended by others. Rejection can send them into a tailspin, threatening their sense of security, and it’s important for Crabs to remember to communicate about their feelings rather than retreating or responding with passive aggressive communication. Cancers don’t forgive easily and will need to take care to use their energy to practice self-care rather than nurture a grudge. They may — eventually — forgive but are unlikely to ever forget.
Cancers, like the crab they’re associated with, may present a tough outer shell, but they are warm, soft, and loving inside. Their deep sensitivity could have Cancers fearing that other people will use their vulnerability against them. For this reason, Cancers don’t give trust easily, but when they do, it’s for life.
Cancers are also known to be nurturers — always taking care of the physical and emotional needs of others. While admirable, Crabs will need to take care not to ignore their own needs in the process. Cancers may have a difficult time prioritizing their own needs in relationships if they feel that choosing themselves could threaten the security of the relational bond.
Cancers are far from boring, but they do prefer routine, familiarity, and consistency. A surprise party may not be the best idea for Cancer. They may be happier with a planned event at home with their nearest and dearest or a cozy night on the couch binge-watching favorite movies. Cancers love tradition. They enjoy long-established ones but are also creative enough to make their own.
Because Cancers tend to be deeply intuitive and emotional, it’s no surprise that there are many famous ones in the world. Some famous Cancer celebrities include singer Ariana Grande, actor Tom Hanks, actor Meryl Streep, royal and icon Princess Diana, activist and youngest-ever Nobel Prize winner Malala Yousafzai, comedian Will Ferrell, actor Margot Robbie, actor Chris Pratt, actor Mindy Kaling, actor Sandra Oh, singer Cyndi Lauper, actor Harrison Ford, and many others. It’s no surprise to find so many actors on this list with Cancer’s innate ability to adapt their energy to others.
Cancer may be naturally more compatible with Taurus, Virgo, Scorpio, and Pisces while they may find Aries and Libra to be least compatible. Compatibility isn’t a guarantee of relationship success. Instead, it simply illuminates the strengths and challenges of each potential pairing. Cancers may struggle more in relationships with Aries and Libra–but that doesn’t mean these relationships can’t be loving and healthy. Likewise, a Cancer match with Taurus, Virgo, Scorpio, or Pisces is no guarantee of a happy ever after story. Relationships require work, but we can use all the insights we can get!
Cancer + Taurus: Cancer and Taurus are the sweethearts of Zodiac relationships. These two are gentle with each other, and this love runs deep–so long as neither carry too much unhealed emotional baggage into the relationship. They see eye-to-eye on the ideas of home, family, and love, and they truly enjoy being together. They’re both sensitive, but they’re also capable of facing conflict and overcoming it as long as they stay committed to keeping their love strong.
Cancer + Virgo: Cancer and Virgo will likely bring out the best in each other with their shared love of hearth and home. Expect stability, intuitive understanding, and great sensitivity from this pairing. Both Cancer and Virgo will be on the same page about routine, order, security, and comfort, which may make this couple one of the more harmonious of the Zodiac. The biggest challenge of this primarily peaceful pair will be to avoid falling into critical communication. If the Cancer and Virgo couple can figure out how to communicate kindly instead of nagging each other to death, their love could go the distance.
Cancer + Scorpio: Cancer and Scorpio are a power couple. Expect a whirlwind romance followed by quick commitment. Both are romantic, reserved, and intense, and the relationship may feel effortless at first. Scorpio’s need for more space could challenge Cancer’s need for cuddles and security. Possessiveness could come up on both sides, and this couple will need to keep the lines of communication open to continue this strong bond.
Cancer + Pisces: Cancer and Pisces may be the most ideal pairing for a Cancer. Pisces absorbs moods, and Cancer reflects them. This will likely have the two of them in harmony–although a bad day could be disastrous with synchronized energy. This pair will be intuitive, romantic, affectionate, sentimental, and supportive. This is a near-perfect pairing, but a Cancer and Pisces couple may want to make sure that they don’t entirely shut out the rest of the world. Strong social support from others will help them find more balance without becoming overly reliant on the relationship alone for support.
What Being a Cancer Really Means
Don’t blame your horoscope sign for your problems. That should be lesson #1! Being a Cancer doesn’t mean you have a set of traits that you cannot escape that define all your choices. It just means you might have a collection of behavioral and even emotional tendencies. What you do with these tendencies is your own business. Understanding our sun, moon, and rising signs can help us understand our personalities, and it can even be a valuable guide on the path to personal growth.
Identifying a star sign alone won’t determine our behavior or future. Instead, we can see how our strengths can become challenges and how our challenges can become strengths. It can give us a deeper perspective, but it is unlikely to help us win the lottery or tell us if we should dump the one we’re with. If only it worked that way!
Cancer may be incredibly sensitive, but this also helps them to connect to others and build strong relational bonds both at home and at work. Understanding their own sensitivity and strong intuition can help Cancers learn to separate their own emotional experience from others. These gifts may help them read the room and correctly interpret energy, which can be a benefit in any social context. Reading the energy without absorbing it may be a lifelong practice for deeply caring Cancers.
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