Through a Jungian Lens

See new site URL –

Sign of Cancer and the Ox

with 12 comments

Cancer the sign of the crab

This is one interesting looking crab that I found hiding on the side of a rock, the most colorful crab seen during the time spent in the Philippines, and there were a fair number of varieties of crabs seen and photographed. I chose this photo for today’s post because of an image I receive in my e-mail inbox just about everyday, a horoscope for the day for the sign of Cancer.


The image to the right was borrowed from the e-mail which comes from OM, a service that provides both a daily meditation and a daily horoscope. As is likely obvious at this point, I was born under the sign of Cancer. I did a bit of web-surfing to find out more about Cancer and the crab and found this interesting bit of information:

A crab is able to walk or run sideways. Similarly, Cancer natives can sometimes “move about” in life, in a figurative sense, in an indirect manner. The crab’s body is covered by a carapace (shell). Cancer natives are self-protective and sensitive, and often retreat into themselves when hurt. Crabs are able to resist changes in the environment, thereby protecting themselves from hostile elements in various habitats. Similarly, Cancer natives are thought to avoid too much change, and to be on the defensive. Crabs have “complex  behavior patterns” (1). The inner world of Cancer natives is thought to be rather quirky and complex. Some crabs “conceal themselves by decorating their bodies with plants and animals” (2). Cancer natives tend to try to blend in with their environments, preferring not to make a big splash in life.” (Cafe Astrology)

I have to admit that this is a fairly decent image of myself though by no means a complete image. One of the interesting things that I found out is that the moon is the natural ruler of the sign. I then noticed the 6 and 9 image and immediately thought of the yin yang symbol.  Research didn’t find any correlation between the yin yang symbol and the symbol for cancer.  However, the horizontal 69 is said to represent the “couple” as well as a woman’s breasts which nurture. There is so little that I know or understand about astrology that I would best be advised to listen to others who are more versed in the science.

In the Chinese Zodiac, I am represented as an Ox.  It is curious to note that the Ox is ruled by “yin” the dark, feminine aspect, with earth as its element for the particular year I was born. For those who are interested, the years of the Ox are: 1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985.  According to some sources, the least likely mate for an Ox is a Tiger.  According to one site, the union of Ox and Tiger is marked by: “Personality clashes and bitter rivalry. No understanding of each other. Animosities and mutual distrust. Unable to resolve their differences. ” Well, that explains the animated relationship I have with my wife of 40 years (humour intended here).  You can’t believe everything you read.


12 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Since I have my moon and ascendant in Cancer, I feel I can add to your description of the crab. Along with what you learned from Cafe Astrology, there is another trait attributed to this sign. It’s called the crab mentality.

    If you have a bucket of crabs and one tries to get out, the rest of the crabs will pull him back down. That’s why crabs are always sold in an open barrel or bucket because they’re not going anywhere.

    This resonates with me. Not so much that I would consciously attempt to keep others down, but at times feel it on the inside in regard to myself.

    This Cancer trait was explained to me by an astrologer and I have never forgotten it. The awareness has been helpful as sometimes I can see it at work in my life and will then throw a rope to a nearby tree to escape the parts of me that want to keep me down.


    December 4, 2011 at 10:35 am

    • Thank you for adding to this topic. I have so much yet to learn – 🙂


      December 4, 2011 at 12:00 pm

  2. I too am a Cancer.


    December 4, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    • Something tells me you are also an Ox – Were you born in 1961? 🙂


      December 4, 2011 at 12:37 pm

  3. Dear Robert,
    Thank you for this Post and picture.
    Yes, Astrology can be used as one of the very important tools to help us on our path of Individuation.
    And as Jung mentioned in “the Secret of the Golden Flower” – it is so because it is Synchronistic.
    Of course this form of Astrology does not include the materialistic forms of Astrology that one can read in the magazines and newspapers and is published by all sort of so called guru’s and are only bases on the so called sun signs.

    When I started on Astrology in the sixties, my teacher who has reached the age of 80 years, assured me that study in Astrology is a lifelong study, just as Individuation is – and after all these years I only can agree with him.

    To react of the Sun Sign of Cancer – the cancer is searching in the “mud” for food and distilling his food from the mud.
    Similar symbolism is the Lotus, emerging from the dark mud and presenting itself with all its glory to the Sunshine.

    Opa Bear

    December 4, 2011 at 8:45 pm

  4. IMO people misunderstand Jung’s interest in astrology.
    What Jung studied his entire life was the human psyche and its products. His study of astrology was based on this same observation, it is a product of the human psyche: he wrote to the Hindu astrologer, B.V. Raman on the 6th of September of 1947:

    “Since you want to know my opinion about astrology I can tell you that I’ve been interested in this particular activity of the human mind since more than 30 years. As I am a psychologist, I am chiefly interested in the particular light the horoscope sheds on certain complications in the character. In cases of difficult psychological diagnosis I usually get a horoscope in order to have a further point of view from an entirely different angle. I must say that I very often found that the astrological data elucidated certain points which I otherwise would have been unable to understand. From such experiences I formed the opinion that astrology is of particular interest to the psychologist, since it contains a sort of psychological experience which we call ‘projected’ – this means that we find the psychological facts as it were in the constellations.”

    John Ferric

    December 5, 2011 at 2:46 am

  5. Alas no – 1962. That makes me a Tiger.
    You will have to instruct me on Cancer/Tiger combinations.


    December 5, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    • Well, to begin with, your “Tiger” is based on the element “water” and is “yin”. My ox is “earth” and is “yin” –

      From wikipedia: Water (Chinese: ?; pinyin: shu?), is the low point of the matter, or the matter’s dying or hiding stage.[1] Water is the fifth stage of Wu Xing.

      Water is the most yin in character of the Five elements. Its motion is downward and inward and its energy is stillness and conserving. It is associated with the Winter, the North, the planet Mercury, the color black, cold weather, night, and the Black Tortoise (Xuan Wu) in Four Symbols.

      It is also associated with the moon, which was believed to cause the dew to fall at night.

      In Chinese Taoist thought, water is representative of intelligence and wisdom, flexibility, softness and pliancy; however, an over-abundance of the element is said to cause difficulty in choosing something and sticking to it. In the same way, Water can be fluid and weak, but can also wield great power when it floods and overwhelms the land. Water governs the Kidney and Urinary bladder and is associated with the ears and bones. The negative emotion associated with water is fear/anxiety, while the positive emotion is calmness.

      Grey and Blue colours also represent Water.

      Earth is a balance of both yin and yang, the feminine and masculine together. Its motion is inward and centering, and its energy is stabilizing and conserving. It is associated with the color yellow and the planet Saturn, and it lies at the center of the compass in the Chinese cosmos. It is associated with the turn of each of the four seasons and with damp. It governs the Spleen, Stomach, mouth and muscles. Its negative emotion is anxiety and its positive emotion is empathy. Its Primal Spirit is represented by the Yellow Dragon.

      In Chinese thought Earth is associated with the qualities of patience, thoughtfulness, practicality, hard work and stability. The earth element is also nurturing and seeks to draw all things together with itself, in order to bring harmony, rootedness and stability. Other attributes of the earth element include ambition, stubbornness, responsibility and long-term planning. In pathology, the earth can represent selfishness and self-centeredness.”

      And for yin: “Yin is characterized as slow, soft, yielding, diffuse, cold, wet, and passive; and is associated with water, earth, the moon, femininity and nighttime.


      December 5, 2011 at 2:58 pm

    • A bit more from another source about the “water tiger”: “The water element has a calming effect so these Tiger types are calmer and more placid than their fellow cats. Their ability to take people’s feeling and ideas on board makes them very reasonable and understanding. They are also endowed with great insight and strong powers of intuition which gives them excellent judgments. The Tiger habit of watching and waiting before leaping can make them unable to make up their minds. They might occasionally find themselves snoozing and watching the ripples instead of going for the price they had in mind..”


      December 5, 2011 at 3:02 pm

  6. That sounds lovely!
    I’ll buy it.


    December 7, 2011 at 12:42 pm

  7. […] Sign of Cancer and the Ox at Through a Jungian LensDec 4, 2011 … This is one interesting looking crab that I found hiding on the side of a rock, the most colorful crab seen during the time spent in the Philippines, … […]

    Cancer ox | Unidompus

    August 29, 2012 at 8:29 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: