The Signs


Element Water
Mode Cardinal
Ruler Moon
Exaltation Jupiter 15
Triplicity Mars
Ptolemaic terms MarsJupiter 13 Mercury 20 Venus 27 Saturn 30
Decans (Faces) Venus 10 Mercury 20 Moon 30
Detriment Saturn and Uranus
Fall Mars

The Cancer is the one and only sign ruled by the Moon. The temper of the natives is very moody, centered on feelings and emotions. For this reason they tend to stay at home and enjoy family life, creating their famous shelter. In this sign the life force is completely focused on building strong emotional boundaries towards the outside world, where dangers might lie. For example, think about the turtle, the crab or the oyster—they’re all animals which carry their home around, protecting their soft nature with a thick rind.

Being the Moon the emotional and passive component of the psyche, Cancer’s shelter is not only made of domestic walls. In fact they have the tendency to rely on others, especially on the emotional level. After all, most of the times the best protection comes from a party of precious allies. It doesn’t matter if they are not strictly speaking part of the family—sooner or later they will. In fact, as long as they don’t cling on too much to others, Cancer are able to maintain long lasting friendships and relationships because they are emotionally truthful. We can’t say they’re all sticky people, it’s just that they need to feel close to whom they love.

A cute crab as a symbol for the Cancer

It is no surprise that Jupiter—god of trust and community life—has its exaltation in this sign. In fact the essential form of social life is family, which as we have seen strongly relates to the Cancer. If we can’t develop our social skills in a (supposedly) protected environment how can we expect to do it outside? Growing up the adults of tomorrow is the greatest responsibility, because they are going to shape the society to their own image. Happier children will make the earth a better place.

We must say that Cancer are not exactly those angels of the hearth they’d love to be. First of all, they’re lazy. Their tendency to rely on others can easily become—on a practical level—opportunism. For example, they might say they are afraid of driving as an excuse to be picked up by others.

In addition, they are very sensitive people. They often feel insecure and targeted by those with a strong personality. The truth is that their emotional nature amplifies everything, making them feeling uncomfortable easily. However, this can also be a pro. Their hypersensitivity allows them to perceive even the slightest emotional dynamic that’s going on under the surface. For this reason they’re compassionate and respect other people’s weaknesses.


Key Words

  • Water, cardinal, phlegmatic temperament, Moon, pearl, crab
  • emotions, feelings, moody temper, hypersensitivity
  • Home, shelter, protection, comfort, convenience, laziness
  • victimism, opportunism, procrastination, insecurity,
  • weakness, cowardice, aggressions, homebody
  • Family, love, compassion, acceptance, hospitality, trust, to rely on,

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