The new moon in Cancer–a receptive water sign–invites us to be grateful for our sensitivity, sourced in the nervous system and the porous watery realm of our emotions. Among sensitivity’s many gifts is the ability to read and understand–without words–the others in our environment. Sleep is important to this capacity. Among the surprising consequences of just one sleepless night is that we lose this ability to read people, which makes the world seem hostile and strange.
Cancer’s superpowers–sensitivity, intuition, and compassion–are the Great Mother’s superpowers. They make the world safe. They help us to feel at home. Each year at the Cancer new moon, we get an opportunity to deepen our relationship with this side of ourselves. Cancer is the moon’s own sign–which makes this the perfect cycle to take your interest in moon astrology to a more intimate layer. Find this sign inside yourself. It’s in everyone’s chart somewhere. It’s part of what makes you whole!
Being absorbent, diffuse
Years ago I watched a Scientology documentary that showed Tom Cruise sitting in a Home Depot parking lot doing “tone drills” designed to develop his capacity for intuiting the emotional states of random people leaving the store. I don’t know how this exercise fit into Scientology doctrine, but given his Cancer sun sign, Cruise does serve the moon.
And he was practicing a moon skill (intuition) in a moon place (Home Depot parking lot) focused on a lunar theme (feelings) being experienced by a moon-ruled group (the public). I hadn’t thought of doing an exercise like this and I briefly wondered if it was worth adding to my emotional mastery syllabus.
The trouble is—most people who come to for lessons in emotional mastery are usually in the opposite situation. They want to learn how to stop registering what every person in the room is feeling. As an archetypal Mars action hero, Cruise “drills.” Masculine solar consciousness is focused. It hunts. Feminine moon awareness tends to be absorbent and diffuse. It gathers and contains.
We don’t recommend prying into strangers’ psyches as a rule. Yet reading people’s emotions is not a particularly exotic or even invasive skill. Think about children playing in a schoolyard—how easy it is, even from a distance, to tell what various ones are feeling. The boy kicking gravel is bored. The girl sitting in a swing, dragging her feet and looking at the ground is sad about something. The two girls skipping over to a third friend are happy. The boy slamming the ball against the fence is mad. We’re social beings. Our bodies broadcast the ups and downs of our emotional states.
If you’re a sensitive—perhaps with a prominent moon in your chart—you likely discovered this frequency early in life. Nobody had to introduce you to it. On your own, you recognized the benefits of reading others’ moods and figured out how to excel at it (which is why the moon-ruled are usually quite gifted at working with people). You probably got good at interpreting visual cues—slumped shoulders, a tight face. You saw patterns—how whenever Sam got tired, anger would follow.
But there was something else. Without really noticing how you were doing it, you began to know just by entering a room whether something was up. You got a sense for something happening in the air—tension, expectation, celebration. Maybe this helped you navigate through a childhood where your safety hinged on somebody else’s moods. Maybe it helped you avoid the bullies in the lunchroom.
Revealed from within
Had you been born in a different time and place, your sensitivity might have attracted the attention of the temple priestesses who over the years would have initiated you into the many subtle layers of the Feminine mysteries. But it didn’t happen that way. That’s because it’s no longer necessary. In our time, intuition reveals itself from within—as a natural ability that gets better the more we pay attention it. Reading emotions is often a sensitive’s gateway into other more refined intuitive skills. Mood-reading carries us into the invisible world—which is sometimes thick with information. Emotions, in particular, have a highly energetic quality.
Imagine a game where you were deposited in a chair outside a large room and then blindfolded. A line of schoolchildren, the other game-players, were instructed to walk quietly past you before entering the room. Likely you couldn’t intuit what every child was feeling (nor would you want to!). But surely there would be some, as they walked slowly past, for whom you’d get a charge, an inkling, a picture, a sensation that wasn’t yours.
Frequency doesn’t matter. Maybe two hundred children file past before you notice anything. Just focus on the mechanics of that moment. When you get your inkling, what are you doing? How do you know what you suddenly know? If you’re using intuition, there’s only one answer. You aren’t doing anything. You’re just letting the information come to you. Intelligence is traveling on air.
Information often comes this way. You suddenly get the thought you’re going to run into Becca today, and later that afternoon, there she is at the post office. Or out of nowhere, you think to call your sister, who unbeknownst to you has just heard bad news and really needs some comforting. At the planning meeting, you find yourself distrusting what your boss is saying. Later you learn that he was forced to cover up management’s true plans.
As children we didn’t need to wonder how we knew what we knew. Often enough our knowing was invalidated. Concerned about our mother with her head in her hands, we might ask, “Is something wrong?” “I’m fine!” was a typical adult reply. Adults who’ve lost touch with with their own inner awareness can hardly train children to respect theirs. But now it’s appropriate—particularly if you’re a sensitive–to wonder about how your intuition works. And that’s what I invite you to explore with your experience over the next two weeks.
Wondering weaves the archetype into your subconscious. So… wonder … how is it that you sometimes “know’ things? Where in your body do you know things? Pay particular attention to your awareness of other people’s moods. What is the mechanism that lets you pick up what one person is feeling but not the next one? Or with the same person—sometimes you can read them and sometimes you can’t—why?
Another fun game is to look at the house in your astrology chart where the new moon falls. This is the area of life where your Cancer superpowers are strongest. Don’t know which house the new moon lights up? You can calculate your chart here: look for the house with 18 degrees of Cancer. Can you see how your intuition and sensitivity have been an asset in this area of life?
© 2021 Dana Gerhardt
At Mooncircles, we honor both the inner and outer Moons.
Each is a perfect way to explore the other.
To find out more about your inner and outer Moons, check out my Moon Workshop and/or my Moonprints report!