Despite being located in Indonesia, the official religion in Bali is Hinduism- but a different sort of Hinduism to what is practised in India. I won’t get into details here (mainly because I’ll probably get them wrong!), but is has to do with what the Balinese worship in addition to Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu. They also worship (with thanks and credit to Lonely Planet) ancestral gods, village founders, gods of the earth, fire, mountains and water; gods of fertility, rice, technology and books; and the demons who live in the world beneath the oceans.
Being Hindu, the cow is revered in Bali. I asked our driver the other day why this was so. He explained that the cow is the mother- it is the source of milk for babies and the giver of life. He said the cow was identified with the mother of gods.
The concept of mother is seen also in Gunung Agung- Bali’s highest mountain (and volcano) and the temple Pura Besakih 1000m up the mountain. The mountain is said to be the “mother” and the temple the “mother temple”. In any case, it is the spiritual centre of Bali, with the peak thought to house ancestral spirits. The mountain harnesses the rain from the west to provide nourishment for crops.
As for the volcano herself? She is usually shrouded in clouds and rarely seen. This too is about “mother”- you know she’s there, her presence is comforting, sometimes (as in the case of an eruption) fearful, and sometimes a great big guilt block in the road of the stuff you want to do, but do you ever really “see” her? Do you ever really know what’s going on inside of her?
With this many references to “mother” and “ancestry”, I can only be talking about the Cancer Moon. Specifically, the Full Moon in Cancer- which is what we will have tomorrow afternoon (Sydney time) at 5.30pm.
The Full Moon in Cancer casts the spotlight very clearly on the struggle between the competing themes of Cancer (home, family, food, sensitivity, nurturing, history) with Capricorn (work, goals, achievement, authority, experience, respect).
As with all signs, Cancer has more in common with her opposite Capricorn than you might think. Cancer is not always the shy, mothering type. There are not always apple pies on the table and a warm hug. Cancer can also be one tough mother, so to speak, with the whole concept of “you’ll thank me for this one day” or “I’m doing this for your own good.” And, sometimes, tough love is what is required. Cancer has the same ability as Capricorn to dig deep in times of hardship and provide nourishment and security for her family (think metaphorically here…). Despite the pain of her lessons, Cancer provides support and structure within which we can grow and then leave to function independently.
Cancer can be as ruthlessly ambitious and no nonsense as Capricorn- it is just that the motivation may be different. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with this either.
Capricorn, on the other hand, runs into her shadow when she loses track of goals and wallows in a mire of “what could have been” or “poor me.” Capricorn can fear success in the same way that Cancer fears emotional vulnerability.
Both the sunshine and the shadow become important at the Full Moon. For every achievement there must be something sacrificed. In the case of Cancer/Capricorn, what have you sacrificed in terms of home, family, emotional ties, whatever in order to achieve, progress, attain your goals? What is the cost of your hard work? What are the rewards? Are they worth it? What has been the impact to your emotional health?
Think about the premise in the recent movie I Don’t Know How She Does It. (As an aside, I preferred the book, but regardless of this, still enjoyed the movie…). The character of Kate represents this dichotomy beautifully. She is a mother. She is also ambitious. She has the same protective instincts towards her job as she does towards her children. Every day is a question of balance. Investment in one area means payback in the other. Sacrifices in one, bring rewards in the other. It is a constant and exhausting see-saw. Outwardly she has it all together, but at what cost? At what point does it all fall apart?
Look at your own chart- where does 18 Cancer/Capricorn fall? This is the area of life under the spotlight for you. Do you have any planets or chart points between, say, 16-20 Cancer, Capricorn, Aries, Libra? These points will be especially sensitive.
In my chart, 18 Cancer falls just inside the 5th house. For me, then, the work/life balance takes on 5th and 11th house overtones. Creativity, children, risk, fun vs friendships, community, groups. What do I sacrifice in one of these areas in order to achieve my goals in the other? This is a pertinent question for me at present as I try and work out how I can use my creativity to achieve my financial and vocational goals.
What about you? Where is this playing out in your life? What needs to be nurtured more? Do you need to step back from work a little and re-connect with your family? Do you need to stop using your family or your past as an excuse for not achieving in the present? How vulnerable are you prepared to make yourself? Do you fear success in this area and are tempted to crawl back into your shell and wallow in self pity and seethe with resentments or do you have someone in your life with enough tough love to kick you up the butt and push you out of your nest/ off the couch/ away from your comfort zone? Is it possible to find balance? Can you really have it all? How many question marks can go into this post?
Full Moon at 18Cancer 25’
New Zealand: 7.30pm 9 January, 2012
Brisbane: 4.30pm 9 January, 2012
Perth, KL, Singapore, Bali: 2.30pm 9 January, 2012
London: 7.30am 9 January, 2012
New York: 2.30am 9 January, 2012
LA: 11.30pm 8 January, 2012
The usual fine print applies regarding my accuracy in calculating time zones 🙂
For another look at this Full Moon, check out this post on Big Sky Astrology.