Cancer: Call Me Mama

Symbolized as two fish, Pisces is as sensitive to changes in a person’s emotional temperature as fish are to changes in water temperature. Cancer, meanwhile, perceives shifting tides of emotion as accurately as its animal symbol the crab perceives shifting tides of the ocean.

When the intuitive abilities of the fish (Pisces Sun) combine with the emotional intelligence of the crab (Cancer Moon) the result is one of most caring, compassionate, sensitive and deeply emotionally of the 144 Sun/Moon pairings. When Bill Clinton said “I feel your pain” it’s highly unlikely that he meant it. A Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon person may not specifically say “I feel your pain” but you can bet that they do. And whatever else you’re feeling as well.

At its highest expression, this pairing is as attuned to subtle undercurrents of the emotional world as a school of fish are attuned to subtle undercurrents of the sea:

Contemplating how that school of fish relates to its environment will provide you with an excellent feel for how a Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon experiences the world. For this pairing the watery realm emotional worlds is everything.

This pairing does best in the healing professions where it’s empathic abilities can be put to their fullest use. Astrologers Suzi and Charles Harvey tell the Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon individual, “You can identify with people’s pain and fear because you have had plenty to deal with on your own.” (Source) Astrologer Bill Tierney makes a similar point about the Pisces/Cancer combination, describing its inclination towards heartfelt involvement in philanthropic endeavors as follows:

Being highly sympathetic, this pairing is moved by the plight of people undergoing difficult times. They are more emphatic than judgmental.

These [combination of] energies can be used to support universal causes that demand heightened public awareness, usually involving whatever it takes to eradicate suffering . . This ability comes through loud and clear when we involve ourselves in charitable events or projects of a humanitarian nature. Our maternal warmth is offered unconditionally. (Source)

Using the date of its as its date of birth, the organization ACTUP is a Cancer Sun, Pisces Moon. (Chart) You’ll be hard pressed to find an organization that did more to address people’s suffering, expressed more empathy for those unfairly judged by society, or who offered more unconditional compassion for those in severe pain than ACTUP.

For those who may not remember, ACTUP stands for “AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power”. During its hey-dey of the 1980s and early 1990s it was the premier organization lobbying for the rights of people afflicted with a disease that was as terrifying as it was mysterious. As the above video reminds us, during the early days of the AIDS epidemic there was serious talk among policymakers of rounding up AIDS patients into internment camps and even tattooing them so they would be identifiable by the general population. Pisces/Cancer understands that a society’s character (or that of a person) can be ascertained by how we treat the least among us.

Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon is one of the most theatrically oriented of the 144 Sun/Moon pairings. The psychic faculties of Pisces combine with the intuitive prowess of Cancer to produce a person who is excellent at deeply feeling human emotions and projecting them onto the stage or screen. Not coincidentally, members of ACTUP performed a lot of street theater.

The Harveys tell us that one of metaphoric images for this pairing is “An actress plays Clara Barton (founder of the Red Cross) and is so inspired by her life that she leaves the theater to become a doctor”. (Source) That happens to be an excellent metaphoric approximations of ACTUP as it combines the dramatic flair of the theater with the compassionate service of an organization whose goal is to relieve human suffering.

Even those Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon natives who go into distinctly non-healing professions will somehow find themselves tending to the emotional health of others. NFL running back Reggie Bush, for instance, is a Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon. (Bush’s Chart) At first glance you might not think a heterosexual African American football player best known for dating Kim Kardashian would have much in common with an organization made up mostly of openly gay men like ACTUP. But Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon is a double water pairing so there is always more to the person than meets the eye. So just stick with me on this one . . .

Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon can cope with inundations of water (emotion) better than any other Sun/Moon pairing. Bush signed his first NFL contract with the New Orleans Saints just a few months after Hurricane Katrina left the city inundated with emotional and economic despair. According to a 2006 USA Today article, Bush came to be seen by residents of New Orleans as nearly saint-like both for the emotional relief his presence generated and for the aid projects he personally financed:

At a May ceremony, the Rev. William Maestri, superintendent of Catholic schools in the New Orleans archdiocese, likened Bush to St. Reginald of Orleans, a 13th-century French saint who helped establish the Dominican order. After the student body ended with a “Reggie, Reggie” chant, Glaser says, “You could see he was truly moved. He was teary-eyed.” (Source)

The Harveys’ second metaphoric image for the Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon individual is, “A medical missionary voyages east . . .” (Source) While not an actual missionary, the profoundly uplifting effect Bush’s presence had on the city’s collective emotional health was comparable to what only the most successful of medical missionaries could hope to inspire. Even when working in a hurting profession, this pairing will somehow end up involved in healing.

Actor Kurt Russell is a Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon who also has a Mars/Venus conjunction in Aries just like Reggie Bush. (Russell’s Chart) People with the same Sun/Moon pairing (“Astro-twins”) often bear a impossible to dismiss resemblance to each other even if they’re obviously not related by blood. Take a look at this screenshot of Russell taken from the 1976 television show The Quest and compare it to a screenshot of Bush taken from a 2011 television interview:

Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon Astro-Twins: Actor Kurt Russell and Miami Dolphins Running Back Reggie Bush

Notice any similarities?

Astro-twin resemblances are more about vibe, demeanor, and the physical ingraining of habitual emotional patterns than simply looks. The phenomenon thus crosses racial boundaries, as the above photos make clear.

Russell, by the way, played professional baseball for four years before going into acting full time. (Source) Many of his most memorable roles, such as Snake Plissken in the Escape series of films, required a thespian who was equal parts actor and athlete. Pisces Sun, Cancer Moon is a great combination for the theater while a Mars/Venus conjunction in Aries (the Warrior) is an excellent placement for athletics. Put the two together and you’ve got a person who can excel at athletically demanding forms of theater . . . while also working to relieve the suffering of others. Kurt Russell, for instance, is a Board Member of the humanitarian aviation organization Wings of Hope (WOH). According to its Wikipedia page, Wings of Hope:

. . . locates and arranges for advanced health care usually for children with massive birth defects and then transports them to and from that care for years until all treatments are completed. The service is provided at no-cost.” (Source)

That a Pisces/Cancer organization like ACTUP and Pisces/Cancer individuals would all be involved in efforts to relieve suffering makes perfect sense. Astrologer Jacqueline Bigar writes of this combination, “This pairing instinctively reaches out for others in physical or psychic pain, knowing that a touch or expression can help.” (Source)

Thoughts? Post them in the comments section.

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Copyright Matthew David Savinar, 2012

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  • pamela says:

    Hey Matt, awesome piece!
    I’m sorry to hear about Mr. Rainwater and tend to agree that the stress brought on by learning about PO is what may have triggered the disease. That’s really sad.
    hope you have a great 2012 Matt.

    your friend,

  • MattSavinar says:


    Thanks Pam!

    (Pam is referring to this article:

  • ben0 says:

    Hello Matt! very interesting writings.. i see that you aremainly interested in combinations that have some edge to them (lots of scorpio and aries stuff for example), but if you would write virgo sun – cancer moon, i’d be more than happy to read it…

    have a great 2014 😀