Jupiter in Cancer

Jupiter, the planet of expansion and growth, is entering Cancer on June 25th, 2013, beginning a stay that will last until July of 2014. Cancer is traditionally considered the sign of Jupiter’s exaltation, meaning roughly that it is the best expression of his energy. So everything should be hunky-dory, right?

Could be, I guess. But a few mitigating conditions might give us pause. Let’s consider.

Jupiter is the King of the Gods, the chief among the sometimes unruly group of powerful personalities. Jupiter is the regal side of kingship - the flowing purple robes and lush throne. He is known to increase things, to create bounty, and to distribute it with an open hand. Liberal generosity can be tempered by dogmatic beliefs, however, and Jupiter does like to have it his way.

Cancer is the sign of the clan, the organic origin we share. We can think of that as our family, our ethnicity, and in the modern era, our nation. It is where we come from, in a material sense. (material = matter = mater = mother)

When Jupiter is in Cancer, the king distributes to his clan. It is the king putting the group before himself, serving the nation rather than himself. Here is a description of the ritual performed by the king of a south Indian province when Jupiter entered Cancer, via Joseph Campbell. The king...

"...had to sacrifice himself at the end of the length of time required by the planet Jupiter for a circuit of the zodiac and return to its moment of retrograde motion in the sign of Cancer--which is to say, twelve years. When his time cane, the king had a wooden scaffolding constructed and spread over with hangings of silk. And when he had ritually bathed in a tank, with great ceremonies and to the sound of music, he proceeded to the the temple, where he paid worship to the divinity. Then he mounted the scaffolding and, before the people, took some very sharp knives and began to cut off parts of his body--nose, ears, lips, and all his members, and as much of his flesh as he was able--throwing them away and round about, until so much of his blood was spilled that he began to faint, whereupon he slit his throat." (Primitive Mythology, p.166)

So, we have an image of the king giving of himself for the clan, in the most gruesome, literal sense. Notice that he is, in a sense, feeding the clan with his flesh - an analogy Catholics will see (or choose not to see). My point, though, is that Jupiter in Cancer is perhaps powerful, but not necessarily “good” in a way that we resonate with easily.

To put this in practical terms, I’m going to focus on the United States. There a few reasons for this, but the best is that the U.S. has its sun. Venus, and Jupiter in Cancer, and so it is likely to express Jupiter in Cancer energy rather directly.

We are likely to see a surge in patriotism, on the one hand, and this will probably come in response to significant stress on the country, economically and socially. But that patriotism is almost surely going to be rooted in a reluctance to embrace needed change - more of the same often feels better than accepting the necessity of taking a new path. A strongly conservative tone to politics is very likely, although this may be in contrast to a very different vibe in the general public.

Going back to 1930, we can see that Presidents of the U.S. have had a rather mixed success rate when Jupiter was in the sign of the crab. Herbert Hoover was generally reviled and credited with creating “Hoovervilles” of shanty towns across the country (although Archie and Edith waxed sentimental about him in All in the Family’s opening song). Franklin Roosevelt did better, but it cost him his health. Dwight Eisenhower managed Jupiter in Cancer pretty well, but Lyndon Johnson did not. Jimmy Carter had a very rough time of it. George H.W. Bush had ups and downs. Notice that Johnson, Bush, Carter, and Hoover were all one-term presidents (elected once).

George W. Bush was President when Jupiter was last in Cancer, from the summer of 2001 to the summer of 2002. Bush, himself a Cancer and with Saturn in the sign, managed to capitalize on the Cancerian energy, riding a wave of popularity in the wake of 9/11.

That wave of popularity centered around a strong nationalism - exactly what we might expect with Jupiter in Cancer. In retrospect, nationalism was also quite strong in the U.S. during the Second World War (Jupiter was in Cancer 1942 - 1943) and the conservative, Cold War 1950s (Jupiter was in Cancer 1954 - 1955). In fact, it seems that Presidents do well when Jupiter is in Cancer and nationalism is running high, but they do poorly when nationalistic fervor is running low (the early 1930s, the 1960s and 1970s). With the Uranus-Pluto square taking aim at the U.S. sun in the next year, we can expect that things will not go particularly smoothly.

More than anything else, astrologers are looking to the spring of 2014, when Uranus, Pluto, and Jupiter will all be in very tight aspect - forming a t-square that will be exact on April 20th - 21st, 2014. Uranus and Jupiter will aspect the U.S. sun just two days earlier, on April 18, and Pluto will station less than a degree away from it on April 14th. It should be a very hot time in the United States indeed (by the way, even non-astrologers have noted that the third week in April is often difficult in the U.S. - in 2013 there was the bombing at the Boston Marathon, for example).

We don’t need to wait that long to see the effects of Jupiter in Cancer, however. Look to June 25, 2013, the ingress date, to see how things are shaping up. Jupiter aspects both Pluto and Uranus in August (the 7th and the 21st). Exact aspects also take place in January and February of 2014, so there will be plenty of opportunities to see how things are shaping up. That goes for the entire planet, not just the U.S..

A bit more subtle, a grand trine between Jupiter, Neptune, and Saturn will be in effect in mid-July. Expect to see a consolidation of power (Saturn sextiling Pluto) around that time, but also a focus on climate change and the response to the wildfires and flooding that are becoming increasingly common.

Socially, we can also expect bit more conservative flavor to things. Jupiter in Cancer is more about church picnics and corporate parties than wild spring breaks, although of course social life is a complex area and depends a lot on where you’re located. The mid-1970s weren't an especially conservative time socially, for example.

On a more personal level, those with planets in Cancer will very likely get a bit of a boost over the next year. And those with Cancer ascendants should be a bit careful with food - weight gain is not uncommon with Jupiter on the ascendant, and Cancer is the sign of food, after all.