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Aspects for the week beginning 19 May 2024

Paula Vennells

“What is it about this seemingly mild-mannered, devout woman that caused her to preside over a reign of total corporate psychopathy?”

~ Marina Hyde

Paula Vennells, former CEO of the Post Office, appears this week in front of the government’s statutory Post Office Horizon IT Inquiry, over the course of three days.  I first wrote on this subject in January, after watching the incredible TV series “Mr Bates vs. the Post Office”.  Alan Bates himself has recently rejected the latest offer of government compensation, labelling it “derisory”.

Birth Chart

I wrote in January:

“Paula Vennells has been an easily identifiable villain in the scandal.  Although not present at the beginning of the subpostmasters’ woes, she was instrumental in the harsh treatment given by the Post Office, and prolonging the agony over a long period of years.  She was the chief executive officer of Post Office Limited from 2012 to 2019.  She has the Sun in Pisces exactly opposite Pluto, which can be a recipe for deception.”

Mars in her chart is square to her natal Sun, giving rise to the Warrior Archetype, and physically granting the red hair.  We do not have a birth time for her, which may strengthen some of the impressions formed from the Noon birthchart analysed here.

The strange conundrum of her story and her character is the parallel career of CEO to the Post Office, with her role as a priest in the Christian (Anglican) church. Paula has the Sun in Pisces, which is particularly associated with Christianity.  One of the negative traits of Pisces’ ruler Neptune can be deception.  And in addition, her Sun, as well as being square to Mars, is also square to Jupiter, which inclines to a religious leaning.  I also observed in January:

“Jupiter at the very beginning of, the essence of, Sagittarius.  This may point to an attitude of over-optimism that the whole thing would go away.  It also describes her secondary career as an Anglican priest.”

She has a very difficult feature in her chart, in a Mutable Grand Cross formed between the Sun opposite Pluto, and Mars opposite Jupiter.  The Grand Cross is a highly stressed combination to manage.

Moon in Leo enjoys power, and the square between Jupiter and Pluto can be liable to the misuse of power.  Mercury square Mars indicates The Critic Archetype.  But most damaging is the square between Mars and Pluto, extreme harshness given and received in life.  Saturn closely trine Pluto equals the Strategist Archetype, and there are examples, to our knowledge, where she tried to influence policies which might have prevented further suffering to the subpostmasters and subpostmistresses.

In addition her Chiron in Aquarius is unaspected.  This means she may not be in touch with her Inner Healer, or it may be very unusual in its manifestation.  Pisces is a soft and sympathetic sign, but if it encounters an overload of suffering early in life, the heart can close up.  We do not know a great deal about her upbringing.

Life and Career

Paula Vennells grew up in Denton, Lancashire, in a working-class area.  Her father was an industrial chemist, and her mother was a bookkeeper and volunteer with the Citizens Advice Bureau.  She attended Manchester High School for Girls, and received her further education at Bradford University, reading Russian, French and Economics.  On leaving University, she trained at Unilever, then worked for L’Oreal, Dixons, Argos and Whitbread.

She became CEO of the Post Office on 1st April 2012, under difficult transits, which included:

Jupiter square her Uranus (risk-taking), Uranus square her Saturn (trying to reconcile the old and the new), transiting Neptune on her Sun (a personal challenge of integrity), and Neptune opposite her Pluto (a deeply complex task).  Looking at her astrological picture, she may have been inwardly floundering from the start (paddling furiously under the surface of the Piscean sea).  Problems with the Horizon IT system were already known, but she consistently sought to deny their existence.

She was paid £5m for her time as CEO, but the financial performance of The Post Office declined considerably during that period.  She resigned from the post in 2019, and took up a post with the NHS (Chair of the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust).  In the same year, she was awarded a CBE (for services to the Post Office and charity).  She resigned in 2021, as a result of the growing publicity about the subpostmasters scandal, from the NHS position, and stood down from her Anglican duties.

The broadcasting of the television drama in January of this year has marked an escalation in her exposure, and shortly after the show was broadcast she issued a formal apology, and her CBE was revoked.  Saturn was sextile her natal Saturn (taking some responsibility, and Neptune was transiting her natal Venus (a personal scandal).


Paula Vennells trained for holy orders and was ordained in the Church of England as a deacon in 2005, then as a priest in 2006.  According to Tim Adams writing this morning in The Observer, she was a confidant of the Archbishop of Canterbury:

“Justin Welby reportedly supported her – unsuccessful – candidature to become bishop of London in 2017…The Bishop of St Albans, her diocese, expressed his distress at the suffering of post office employees, particularly as his father had been a subpostmaster.”


The performance of actress Lia Williams in portraying Paula Vennells in Mr Bates vs The Post Office was uncanny, at least visually.  It’s amazing what styling and make-up can do in television and film!  The connections between the actress and Paula were strong in the personal layer of interaspects: Lia’s Sun was opposite Paula’s Mars, and Lia’s Venus was trine Paula’s Sun.


from January’s blog:

“The transits for the programme, were Jupiter trine her natal Saturn (a final reckoning), and Saturn was opposite her natal Pluto (a personal nadir).  Eight days later, under immense public pressure, she handed back her CBE, with Mars trine her natal Pluto (life forced her hand), Saturn squared her Mars (relinquishing something important to her) and Saturn sextiled her natal Saturn (doing the right thing).”

In mid-June, next month, Jupiter will transit her natal Mars in Gemini, so there may be a temporary respite in intensity, and perhaps a sense of relief that it is all out in the open, having resisted the truth coming out for so long.  In mid-April 2025 Saturn will transit her natal Venus in Pisces, which may signal a considerable personal loss, e.g. to her freedom.  In the coming years, Uranus will transit and trigger her Grand Cross, beginning with an opposition to her natal Jupiter in early August 2025.

In this most distressing of sagas.  I can’t help seeing a comparison with the current benefits scandal in which vulnerable carers are being asked to repay thousands of pounds (which they haven’t got) to remedy mistakes made by the government.  Also, a comparison with the contaminated blood scandal in which the government is dragging its heels in providing the compensation which has been promised.

If anything comes up worthy of astrological analysis, I will post a comment below.

“I saw something in the Post Office that was bigger and deeper, maybe it was something about giving back…”

~ Paula Vennells


There are eleven astrological features this week, including 3 ingresses, so I will begin without preamble.

Late this evening, the Sun will be sextile Neptune.  It’s a sweet sextile, and as you reflect on the day, you may be in an equable spiritual state and ready for a good night’s sleep.  This aspect gives you a better chance of creating beauty and inspiration in your life, conferring spiritual harmony.

Even later, Mars will be conjunct the North Node, which conflicts somewhat with that peaceful vibe.  An early night may ensure that you settle into sleep before the challenges of this conjunction at 14 degrees Aries, though you may dream of ancient battlefields!  There is some element of needing to “fight the good fight”, but these two transits together may mean a need and ability to negotiate peace.  The worldwide news may be interesting, from that perspective, with contrasting pronouncements by doves and hawks.

Tomorrow (Monday 20th) brings the first ingress, that of the Sun entering Gemini.  With the Sun leaving Taurus, earthy preoccupations may give way to a need for Communication and lightness of heart.  In the month of Sun in Gemini any kind of communication goes, writing your book, dealing with your documentation, ensuring that you are walking and cycling to work instead of taking public transport.  It all aids the general connectivity, which society needs.

Deep progress may be made on Wednesday (22nd) when the Sun trines Pluto.  There may be the sense of an ending, which clears the way for a new beginning or rebirth.  You may have to make a decision which brings about changeIt is time to construct a new psychological mindset: one which is creative but also bears in mind the changes and cycles which are transforming our lives at this time. You may have felt that you haven’t got very far with a goal, but may receive an indication in this period that you have done better than you thought, your patience is rewarded, or that a pipe dream could become a going concern.  You may have cause to remember fondly the dearly departed.

Thursday (23rd) is quite a day, with 5 Aspects creating an aspect overload!  I will resort to a timetable:

8.29 a.m. – Venus conjunct Jupiter

First we have the great conjunction of Venus and Jupiter at 29 degrees Taurus, in line with the Pleiades.  In terms of beneficence, this is one of the year’s highlights.  It is an aspect of celebration, social pleasure, and romance.  There may be announcements of engagements, for example.  Look out for some good news, and crack your best jokes.

10.50 a.m. – Venus sextile Neptune

So next up we have this sextile.  This aspect can bring soothing waves of serenity, which hopefully you may experience (extra kudos to those who have been able to maintain it since Sunday’s Sun sextile Neptune).  People may come more into tune with each other.  New artistic avenues may flourish.

13.53 Hrs – Full Moon at 2 degrees Sagittarius

(Apologies for switching to the 24-Hour clock.  It’s not a mistake, it’s just how I like it!)

This particular emotional high tide concerns the expansive bigger picture (Sagittarius) in your life, your psyche, or the world.  If you are feeling such a maelstrom in your life, then you may need to start by going within to that still small spiritual centre, find peace (hopefully drawing from the positive Neptune aspects this week), then make your responses from that place.

20.30 Hrs – Venus into Gemini

The second ingress of the week, bringing a lightness and freedom of heart with the new placement.  It demonstrates a more mental focus to relationships, and increasing communication around love, art and money. Your diary is likely to be full of engagements during the period that Venus travels through this sign, which takes us up to 17th June.  We’ll all be social butterflies, deftly spinning plates in social circles!

21.44 Hrs –  Jupiter sextile Neptune

Last but definitely not least, this sextile between the outer planets could bring spiritual benefits and uplift, whether you subscribe to conventional or alternative religions.  This sextile allows religion and spirituality to work together well.  Higher solutions can be found to even practical problems, filtering down into consciousness from the causal planes.  In raising our consciousness now we have to find higher ways of looking at things, and that includes practical solutions (Jupiter-Neptune are not practically minded, but can inspire us to new practices).  It’s a heavyweight aspect in terms of importance, so make the most of it.

Saturday (25th) is another important day.  It begins with a profound but likely successful trine between Venus and Pluto.  This aspect can settle your deepest feelings into a more comfortable psychological context.  It helps us through changes and transformations on a human level.  Venus in harmony with Pluto benefits both love and money.

In the evening, there is a major ingress of Jupiter into Gemini.  Yay! Gemini, this is your year!  We may experience a surge of optimism.  Not that Jupiter in Gemini is necessarily better than Jupiter in Taurus, but a change is as good as a rest.  It brings new ways to better our lives.  We are moving on, philosophically.  New ideas will be coming in, and new ways of thinking.  We’ll be thinking deeply about the processes of our thoughts, and receiving insights.  Communication will also be stimulated, both in your personal life and in the Communications industry.  Publishing too may have a revival, and initiatives in Education. You may see a change of consciousness.  If you are a Gemini you can look forward to growth this year, with a special surge when Jupiter transits your actual natal Sun.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – harmony and conflict
  • Tomorrow – lively communication
  • Wednesday – constructive completions
  • Thursday – it’s all happening
  • Saturday – psychological resolution; a new mindset

Aspects for the week beginning 12 May 2024

Shirley Conran (1932 – 2024)

“Life’s too short to stuff a mushroom.”

~ Shirley Conran

Author Shirley Conran died this week, at the age of 91.  Her husband of seven years was household name Terence Conran, and her two sons Jasper and Sebastian are successful designers.  She emancipated herself, and sought to help other women to do so.

Birth Chart

Shirley had the Sun in Virgo, intensified by a conjunction with its ruler Mercury.  She was a female warrior, with Mars sextile to her Sun.  But one of her greatest assets, astrologically, was a practical exact Grand Trine in the Earth element, composed of the Sun, Chiron and Saturn.  This was one of the keys of her brilliance.  She had an exact conjunction of Jupiter and Neptune in Virgo which contributed to her self-belief, but it was square to her Moon, so subject to fluctuations of mood.  With it would have been a sensitivity to ideals about female lives.  Mercury in her chart was sextile Pluto, so she was not a shallow thinker, despite some of her flippant remarks, which were possibly humorous life hacks.  Mercury conjunct her South Node points to a tendency in past lives to be a teacher and communicator.  Venus conjunct her Ascendant (from her 12th House) was very evident in her life: she was a model, and trained in painting and sculpture, Venusian occupations. Mars conjunct Pluto made her a powerhouse of energy (a “Superwoman” as in the title of her first book), although she fell prey to M.E. (which is often found with high achievers who may have adrenal or perhaps other forms of burn-out).  Saturn squaring Uranus shows personal earthquakes, and she did have a rollercoaster of a life in many ways.  But crises seem to have led to solutions. And Pluto with Saturn and Uranus formed a T-square, which may have triggered these crises during transits to these points.  She was a Rebel (Uranus trine her Ascendant) and liked excitement (Uranus conjunct Part of Fortune).

Life and Career

When Terence Conran died in 2020, I only wrote a few words about her:

“Shirley Conran was Terence’s second wife (of four), and achieved fame with her best-selling book “Superwoman” which I dutifully read in 1975!  It was packed with information about short-cuts to housework and the domestic arts.”

So I can’t rest on my laurels!  Her life and character merit so much more.

She was born in Hendon.  She was kicked out of home by an alcoholic father at 19 and left school, then found herself in a finishing school in Switzerland (a country associated with the sign of Virgo).

She married Terence Conran in 1955, meeting him when she waitressed at his coffee bar.  Their synastry included a lively debating sextile between his Mercury and her Mars; and a karmic sextile between his Saturn and her North Node.  But his Pluto position exactly reinforced her own exact square between Uranus and Pluto, a deep desire for change.  Some marriages are just about the children, and maybe this was one of them, for she left him in 1962.

She said, many years later, “Terence and I had a lot of fun together but, apart from the infidelities, life became just criticise, criticise, criticise from morning to midnight. It was very wearing.”

In the seven years they were together, they had Jasper and Sebastian.  Towards the end of their marriage, she would have had her first Saturn Return (in Capricorn, in her 6th House of Health and Working Conditions) which may have intensified the strain.  In the year she left, she will have been galvanised by Pluto on her Jupiter/ Neptune in her 1st House in Virgo.

In order to finance her new life as a single mother, she turned to journalism, though in the first two years the boys were looked after by her mother.  She became women’s editor of the Daily Mail in 1968, and launched the “Femail” section.

In 1970 her financial woes deepened when she fell prey to M.E. as mentioned previously.  Her transits that year included a debilitating opposition of transiting Neptune to her natal Chiron.  But this led to her writing self-help books.

Her profile increased in 1975 with the publication of her book Superwoman.  Although I read Superwoman, and was amused at the time by her time-saving tips for housewives, I must confess I did not read any of her novels, which yielded more financial success.  These started with “Lace” in 1982, her 50th year, part of the Chiron Return (in her 10th House) of Self-Healing.  Rachel Cooke, writing in the Observer today, praises this book, referring to it as one of her favourite books on friendship.  With her boys now studying design, Shirley finally found the financial freedom she craved to fulfil the lifestyle she wanted.  The late career as a novelist satisfies her Moon in Gemini in 10th House.

Terence Conran

I wrote in 2020:

“With 6 (over half his planets) in the Cardinal signs, he was quite definitely a leader. He certainly led the way in transforming our homes after the war, from traditional furnishing to a more modern look.  In his career, he was always a step ahead, finding new avenues for his talents, such as establishing restaurants.  His Sun was in Libra conjunct his ruler Venus, the sign you would expect to find in an interior designer.”

In 1964 he opened his  famous homeware and furniture shop Habitat, on the Fulham Road in Chelsea.  He had four marriages altogether, five children, thirteen grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

In his astro-obituary, I also wrote:

“On a personal note, we have a monument to Terence Conran in our own home.  In 1975, in setting up our first home, we bought a pine dining table from Habitat.  I know, they’re not fashionable now!  It wasn’t elegant; it was chunky and solid, but one of the best and most enduring purchases of our married life!  It is still going strong, 45 years later.” [now, as of 2024, 49 years later]

Jasper Conran

Jasper’s parents divorced when he was two years old.  Shirley’s 5th House of children is ruled by Jupiter, with Sagittarius being on the cusp, and Jasper is a Sagittarian.  But he and Sebastian take after Terence in being designers, and Jasper has a Libran Ascendant.  Although Shirley has the artistic nature of Venus conjunct the Ascendant, Libra which is also ruled by Venus, is specifically about design, as an air sign.  Jasper and Shirley were estranged for more than 10 years, after she made a tactless remark about his lifestyle (he is gay), but were reunited for his wedding in 2015, with a healing sextile from Jupiter to her natal Pluto (a long standing psychological issue).  Interestingly, his birthchart reveals the possibility of such an estrangement, in his natal square between the Moon (mother) and Uranus (estrangement).  Jasper is more well-known for fashion design, having design for the rich and famous, including Lady Diana.


Sebastian, the other designer in this family unit, is an Aries, and like his brother has been involved in his father’s business.  He started out working as a roadie for the punk band The Clash, designing clothes,  and promotional material. But Sebastian is more well known for industrial design.  He has described his father as “a very charismatic, very driven person” and though he worked for him for several years, he needed to break away to nurture his own talent.  The brothers have good, entrepreneurial connections in their charts, such as Sebastian’s Uranus trine Jasper’s Mercury, and Sebastian’s Mercury trine Jasper’s Jupiter, and Sebastian’s Jupiter conjunct Jasper’s Uranus.


You will have noticed a monetary theme running through her life choices.  Her Sun and Mercury were in Virgo in her 2nd House of Finance.  So when she got to grips with the detail of managing her money, her fortunes changed.

“I became fastidious about checking every penny I spent. I scoured every receipt for mistakes and kept a list of any money I got back from being overcharged, say, for a pub meal or a lipstick. The list was on a pink piece of paper pinned to the back of my basement flat front door.” she explained.

She became an advocate for women’s financial freedom from men, and set up charities such as the Work-Life balance Trust (2001) and the educational non-profit Maths Action (2009). In Liz Truss’s resignation honours list she was made a DBE for services to mathematics education as the founder of the Maths Anxiety Trust.

I hope I have done justice to her life and character – she definitely played her part in the emancipation of women dating back at least to the time that Germaine Greer published “The Female Eunuch” (1970).

“One of the funniest, sharpest people you could ever meet”

~ Rachel Cooke


Tomorrow (Monday 13th) begins with a conjunction between the Sun and Uranus at 23 degrees Taurus.  It’s a day when expectations can be overthrown!  It is a good day to demonstrate your originality and inventiveness, and in your leisure time begin a project which is highly creative or benefits society.   If you are operating from your Intuition, you could have a very successful day, but if you are lagging behind backfootedly, you may have a struggle to keep up.  Some tuning in early on may help with this.

In the evening, Venus sextiles Saturn, which is a constructive aspect, a re-affirmation of where you are going, especially in terms of relationship, or art.  In the realm of human relations, it is about steadiness and loyalty: cementing commitment.

Wednesday (15th) sees Mercury’s entry into Taurus, and the quality of the mental energy may become steadier and calmer than the fieriness of Mercury in Aries.  This placing is better for negotiation, which is something much needed at the moment in this climate of war, with a ceasefire in the Middle East still eluding us.  It stays in this sign until 3rd June,  Practical ideas will be the order of the day.  This could be a productive day and period, mentally.

Breakfast-time on Friday (17th) could be more stressful mentally, however, as Mercury makes a square to Pluto.  It is a square which requires you, among other things, to rise above negative thinking, or to get to the root of it.  There may be a setback or a reversal (even if a fragile ceasefire was under way), so make sure your actions in the morning are solid if you have a conflict to resolve in your own life.  Perhaps there is a twist in the plot.  You may encounter awkward communications or travel.  You may need extra ‘me time’ in order to separate yourself from worried pronouncements about the state of the world.  If you do engage in chatter, choose a worthwhile subject.

Brighter prospects for the end of the week, for late morning on Saturday (18th) Venus conjuncts Uranus at 23 degs Taurus, the same degree as Monday’s conjunction, so there may be a resonance between events at the beginning and end of the week, both centring on the principle of surprise (Uranus).  If  you are socializing, it could be an enjoyable occasion, culminating in some startling exchanges and exciting meetings.  It is a vibrant social aspect, which may carry an element of serendipity.  People may question your sanity, however, or you theirs.

And – can we say all’s well that ends well?  Saturday evening rounds off with one of the best aspects of the year, the Sun conjunct Jupiter, which occurs at 28 degrees Taurus (not far off the Pleiades, if you are tuned in to them).  Where there has been dejection, it is time to let in hope, or even celebration.  It will certainly be lucky for some.  Focus on what makes you happy, and make more of that.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – surprise; followed by loyalty
  • Wednesday – practical negotiation
  • Friday – mental conundrums to deal with
  • Saturday – social excitement; and pure luck

Aspects for the week beginning 5 May 2024

Zodiac Quotations

Today I have an eclectic mix of quotations by and for the Sun signs: from the sublime to the ridiculous, from the profound to the trivial, from past times to modern, from the mystical to the mundane.  There is of course much more from whence they came, and I will maybe blog further in this vein, but please do contribute your own under comments.


“I think, therefore I am”

~ Rene Descartes (1596 – 1650)

Latin: “cogito, ergo sum”

French: “je pense, donc je suis”

Rene’s birthday was 31st March.  He was a true Aries, with the Sun/North Node/Uranus/Jupiter/Pluto conjunct (a satellitium)  in that sign, and Mercury also therein.  Descartes is often thought of as the “father of modern philosophy”.


“If I am doing nothing, I like to be doing nothing to some purpose. That is what leisure means.”

~ Alan Bennett

Alan’s birthday is 9th May, so coming up this week (on Thursday).  He has a triple conjunction of Mars/Mercury/Sun in Taurus as his credential for expressing this sign.  As a playwright, he is prolific.  There is something languid yet productive about this sign, captured in this quotation.


“My mouth is my weapon.  I can destroy somebody with a flick of my tongue.  I’ve got a sharp wit and a sharp way of talking.  I’m not a hitter, but when I’m mad, I’m mad.  I scream it out, then I’m done.”

~  Suzi Quatro

Suzi’s birthday is 3rd June.  She only has the Sun in Gemini, but has it sextile the Rock Star planet of Pluto.  She also has the physical energy and force of Mars rising.  So that Rock Star energy comes through and expresses itself through the Gemini urge and need to communicate, in shouting lyrics such as “Can the Can” and So come alive (yeah!), come alive (yeah!) Down in Devil Gate Drive”…


“Heart’s memory of sun grows fainter,/ sallow is the grass; /a few flakes toss in the wind /scarcely, scarcely.”

~ Anna Akhmatova (1889 – 1966)

Anna’s birthday is 23rd June, just after the summer solstice.  She is one of my favourite poets, and has the Cancerian ability to evoke mood. Here she evokes desolation, both of emotional loss, and the loss of sun in winter.  Her poetry can tear at the heartstrings.  Her chart is very Cancerian, with Mar/Sun and North Node/Chiron (portraying poignancy as her karmic mission) in that sign.  A very Russian soul.


“Creativity hits me like a lightning bolt.  For two weeks ideas overflow and spill from me, before a period of nothing.  The prospect of it suddenly just leaving me one day scares me.  I’m terrified that every song I write might be my last.”

~ Arlo Parks

Arlo’s birthday is 9th August.  This quotation embodies the creative process, but also the sense of drama intrinsic to the Leo experience.  Elsewhere, she speaks of her pleasure in performing, the Performer Archetype being one of Leo’s prominent roles.  Singer-songwriter Parks has a fiery chart: Mercury, Mars and the Sun in Leo with Pluto/Chiron/Sun in Sagittarius, with the Sun trine the Sagittarian planets.  Plenty of Creative Fire.


“I have been very compulsive about clean clothes and clothes in general my whole life. Being born a Virgo has also made me compulsive about neatness. I have always been cleaning my whole life. Cleaning up places and people’s minds!”

~ Sondra Ray

Though Sondra talks about being Virgoan, she has not given out her actual date!  Sondra is one of the original founders, with Leonard Orr, of the Rebirthing movement, and has written numerous books, such as “Loving Relationships”, “The Only Diet There is” and “Birth and Relationships”, all about the effects of our birth.  An American, she once held a workshop on a river boat on the Thames, which I managed to attend.  One could say she strives to embody the purity of the Virgin Mary, associated with her sign, though her guru is/was Babaji.


“Every day I wake up with my wife and we both can’t wait for the day to start.  We hold hands and we’re immensely happy. The love just grows”

~ Brian Blessed

Brian Blessed’s birthday is 9th October.  Libra is in love with love, and here actor Brian Blessed was expressing the romanticism of that sign, words given a few years ago, in an interview.  Sadly his wife Hildegard Neil died last year.  He has the Sun and Mercury in Libra, but almost all (29 degrees) of his 1st House are in Libra, too.  Are they a match made in heaven?  His Moon in Leo, representing the females in his life, is exactly conjunct her Sun in Leo. That is romantic…


“Each generation doubtless feels called upon to reform the world. Mine knows that it will not reform it, but it’s task is perhaps even greater. It consists in preventing the world from destroying itself”

Albert Camus (1913 – 1960)

Albert’s birthday was 7th November, right in the middle of Scorpio.  To all his work, he brought that incisive awareness of life and death, the sign most likely to look at worst case scenarios and try to make sense of them, and even prepare for them.  Scorpios look these issues in the face. He wrote some groundbreaking novels, such as “The Outsider” and “The Plague” and won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1957.


“The optimistic songs reveal a bit more of me because that’s how I feel. I’m definitely a ‘glass is half full’ kind of a person.”

Joan Armatrading

Joan’s birthday is 9th December.  She is a true Sagittarian, with a quadruple conjunction (satellitium) in Sagittarius, consisting of Sun/Moon (i.e. New Moon)/Venus/Chiron.  Thus she has a good share of Jupiterian energy.  My own favourite songs of hers are “Drop the Pilot” and “Love and Affection”.  Hubby and I went to see her perform a few years ago in King’s Lynn, and it was one of the best concerts we have been to: the atmosphere was so warm, and her fans knew all the lyrics (always a good sign). Her book of lyrics “The Weakness in Me” is to be recommended.


“But that was me. And as I’ve said, I was a box checker – marching to the resolute beat of effort/ result, effort/result – a devoted follower of the established path…I was busy climbing my ladder, which was sturdy and practical and aimed straight up”. 

~ Michelle Obama

Michelle’s birthday is 17th January, and here she paints a classic textbook portrait of herself which describes her sign well.  She has the Sun and Mercury in Capricorn.  Her first autobiography, written after she left office as first lady of America, charted her struggle to prove her own worth (a very Capricorn process) against the odds and prejudices towards her race and gender, with the development of her philosophy of her life and her efforts to put the developing philosophy into practice (hence the title: “Becoming”).


“I love being in a team.  I am so glad I was in a group and wasn’t solo, because I would have found that hard.”

~ Emma Bunton

Emma’s birthday is 21st January, right at the beginning of Aquarius.  Her quote was in response to the question “What is your greatest fear?”, and she prefaced it with “Being on my own”.  In the words of the Spice Girls, you might say “Friendship never ends” is a motto for Aquarius.  In her chart, the Sun conjoins with Mercury in that sign.


“I cry all the time.  It’s part of being alive.  I cry a lot when I pray – it’s that feeling of being a sinner, and a human being with needs.”

~ Juliette Binoche

Juliette’s birthday is 9th March.  Pisces is one of the main two signs associated with the acting profession: Leo for the drama and performance, and Pisces for  the sensitive expression of the internal emotions.  She has a Satellitium in Pisces (Midheaven/Mars/Chiron/Mercury and the Sun); Ascendant/North Node in Cancer; Neptune in Scorpio.  So an abundance of water in her chart, and full scope for expression of that emotion.


Tomorrow (Monday 6th) brings us a conjunction of Mercury and Chiron at 20 degrees Aries, which means it’s a day you can focus on problem-solving, and identifying healing needs.  If you don’t have a problem pre-prepared, the Universe will kindly oblige by alerting you.  There may also be a high degree of mental tension or anxiety in the air.  But use what comes up to find solutions, at whatever depth you need to engage with them.  One area which is especially suited to this conjunction in Aries is finance and economy.

A steadying sextile between the Sun and Saturn follows on Tuesday (7th), a practical and serious minded influence.  Duties and commitments are to the fore.  It makes for a good day with regard to laying foundations and establishing rules.  Creativity is firmed up, and decision making may be easier.

A fresh start is possible on Wednesday (8th) with a New Moon at 18 degrees Taurus.  The fresh start may be in the Taurean realm of cooking, gardening, art, music or money.  Make the most of this wishing Moon, as it could be a turning point.  Make good your intentions, and make your intentions good.  One activity associated with Taurus is pottery, and it was reported this week that young people are going to pottery lessons instead of nightclubs.

And, that’s all folks, for the week!  Not a Fixed Star in sight…

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – crisis and healing
  • Tuesday – steady progress
  • Wednesday – new beginning

Aspects for the week beginning 28 April 2024

Frank Field (1942 -2024)

“Frank had integrity, intelligence and deep commitment to the causes he believed in.  He was an independent thinker never constrained by conventional wisdom but always pushing at the frontier of new ideas”.

~ Tony Blair

Labour MP Frank Field died this week at the age of 81.  He was strong in his individuality, and that very much comes across in his birth chart.  Although he was a Labour MP for forty years, he had some markedly conservative values, and was involved in cross party initiatives.  He was also known for specializing on matters of welfare, poverty

Birth Chart

The fact that his Sun was unaspected set the tone of his uncompromising character, and his lone path in life.  His remarkable individuality, often transcending the lines of party politics, epitomises an unaspected Sun.  He was a Cancerian, a sign often interested in matters of human welfare.  Mercury conjunct Jupiter gave him mental resilience, accounting for his long years of service, remaining mentally engaged in politics until the end of his life, despite a long illness.  His North Node in Virgo indicates his conscientiousness and strong sense of service as part of his karmic mission, strengthened by a sextile to the Mercury/Jupiter conjunction.

Life and Career

Frank was born in Edmonton, London.  His parents were Conservatives.  He was educated at St. Clement Danes School, Hammersmith, then Hull University where he read Economics.  He left the Conservative Party in 1960, objecting to apartheid in South Africa, and joined the Labour Party.  He began his working life in 1964 working as a teacher in London.  In the same year, he was made a Councillor in Turnham Green.  1969 saw him engaging on what was to be a lifelong passion, welfare: he became Director of the Child Poverty Action Group – note that this is a particularly Cancerian area of interest.  After an unsuccessful bid to become an MP in 1966, he finally climbed on to the parliamentary ladder in 1979 in Birkenhead, where he would stay as an MP for the next forty years.  Working briefly under Michael Foot in Education, he was then appointed by Neil Kinnock to work in Health and Social Security.

When Tony Blair was appointed Prime Minister in 1997, Frank was made Minister of Welfare Reform, a post on the surface of it tailor made for him being close to his heart.  However, all did not run smoothly.  He did not get on well with Tony Blair and Gordon Brown and even Harriet Harman personally, and disagreed with their outlook on this area.  Tony Blair had given him a brief to “think the unthinkable”, but did not like the strategies which Frank Field came up with.  Here we see the extreme individuality of Frank’s unaspected Sun at work.  His stance on this issue was that the state should only play a small role in the provision of welfare, disliking means-testing and non-contributory entitlement to benefits.  Gordon Brown, on the other hand, favoured the poor being entitled to benefits without having paid National Insurance contributions.  As a result, Field resigned in July 1998.

As a backbencher, he  felt free to criticise the government, and in particular the Working Families Tax Credit which was put into place in 1999.  He publicly described Gordon Brown as “unhappy in his own body”.  He applied to become Speaker of the House of Commons in  2009, but withdrew his candidacy and John Bercow was elected to the post.  When David Cameron, Leader of the Conservative Party, became Prime Minister in June 2010, he appointed him to lead an independent review into poverty.  Not only did this prove to be a continuation of his work along those lines, but he was by then establishing a pattern of working along cross-party lines.  He took another such role in October 2013, chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Hunger and Food Poverty. In 2015 he went on to  be elected chair of the Work and Pensions Select Committee.  But during Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party, Frank was not happy with the growing anti-semitism within the party, and resigned on 30th August 2018, describing a “culture of intolerance, nastiness and intimidation”.  Transiting Mars at the time was trine his natal Neptune, inflaming his sensitivities, and Jupiter squaring his natal Chiron (an overwhelming need to address a wound).  He also sided with the Tory government supporting their pro-Brexit efforts.  Disaffected, he sat as an independent and formed his own party on 2nd August 2019, the Birkenhead Social Justice Party, again that unaspected Sun marking out his individuality. Though the party did not make a great impact politically, personally it was an expression of his own needs: he had a Mars Return on that date, Jupiter was trine his Chiron (satisfactorily addressing the wound which occurred under the square), and Uranus trined his natal North Node (taking charge of his karma). He took a life peerage in 2020 and sat in the House of Lords.

Personal Life

Frank Field did not marry, and was a staunch Christian (Church of England) in his beliefs.  He was a strong supporter of work that combated climate change, and founded a charity in this respect.  Food critic Jay Rayner commented that his unmarried status had caused Field to describe himself as “incomplete”, but he nevertheless led a full social life.  Field wrote an autobiography just last year in 2023, entitled “Politics, Poverty and Belief” – three themes that were strong in his life.  Though he clashed in his opinions and personality with several politicians, mainly from his own party, he was generally well-respected for his integrity, and was able in many instances to work with MPs from other parties. Tony Blair commented: “Even when we disagreed, I had the utmost respect for him as a colleague and a character.” He endured several years of prostate cancer, and three years of extreme ill-health at the end of his life, and supported assisted dying, but departed with a sextile of transiting Jupiter to his natal Sun, often indicating a release.  He certainly served the causes of welfare and the attempt to alleviate poverty in his lifetime – a caring Cancerian.

“Frank dedicated his life to being a voice for the most vulnerable and marginalised people in the country.  He was principled, courageous and independent minded.”

~ Keir Starmer


Tomorrow, Monday (29th) starts with a conjunction of Mars and Neptune at 28 degrees Pisces, a position which conjures up idealistic crusades.  Mars conjunct Neptune may empower the spirit, but for some it may serve to confuse, especially if they are dashing like headless chickens.  Chilling out would give a better outcome.  More meditative activities such as Tai Chi, Yoga and Qijong will achieve a greater sense of balance and serenity.  It is difficult to have one foot in the material world and one foot in the spiritual world, but some can do it.  It is also important to attend for the care of the feet around this time.

By late morning, there is an ingress of Venus into her own sign of Taurus. Within yourself, and in your relationship with nature (weather permitting), you are capable of feeling much more settled and harmonious.  This placement of Venus in her home sign continues right through to 23rd May.  Those born under the Venusian signs of Taurus and Libra will especially feel its benefit, their normal sense of steadiness and balance.

Tuesday (30th) brings another ingress, that of Mars into its own sign of Aries, so both Venus and Mars will be happy bunnies/cows/rams (substitute appropriate animals according to your own judgement and preference).  This may contribute to a sense of well being, a sense of “all’s right with the world”, on some levels (although clearly not on wider levels).  Mars storming into Aries brings an influx of energy, a purer quality of physical energy, especially for those born under Aries.

A square between Venus and Pluto on Wednesday (1st May) may disrupt relationships and  be psychologically discombobulating.  On the world stage, there may be more unedifying examples of man’s inhumanity to man, and the vagaries of global finance.  Deep feeling issues may be preying on your mind.  These will require some psychological soul-searching for a true interpretation, and may spur on honest-as-you-can-be interpersonal communication.

Thursday (2nd) brings more inner focus, with Pluto Stationary prior to turning Retrograde.  This too may be tricky.  Put your psychological house in order, e.g. with a spot of re-aligning meditation, ready for the challenges of this retrograde period.  There may be practical inconveniences, or contentious subjects arising.  The challenges may be more wearying than acute, but you need to keep up your vitality and reserves.  Alternatively, if you find yourself in overwhelm, surrender is equally effective as a spiritual strategy towards a sense of peace and acceptance, and new insight to inform your next steps.

And finally, Mars sextiles Pluto on Friday (3rd) bringing a more constructive end to the week, though these energies together are not guaranteed to be comfortable.  Pluto at its most positive is an aspect of self-mastery and empowerment, whatever that means for you.  This sextile will give you extra physical and emotional energy (especially with Mars being in Aries), so you may find yourself spontaneously clearing clutter.  You might be motivated to do some extra exercise. This could involve very vigorous discussion and perhaps some decisiveness.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – idealistic crusades; harmony with nature
  • Tuesday – intensifying physical energy
  • Wednesday – relationship and money challenges
  • Thursday – psychological soul-searching
  • Friday – constructive and dynamic action

Aspects for the week beginning 21 April 2024

Salman Rushdie

Less than two years ago, Salman Rushdie was stabbed 12 times on stage in New York by an attacker who thought him “disingenuous”.  It would not have been a surprising event decades ago when he was prominently facing a fatwa called for by the Ayatollah Ruhollah for writing “The Satanic Verses”, but felt out of the blue so many years later and his injuries were horrific.  Surgeons were not sure he would survive, but gradually he has recovered enough to write “Knife”, an account of his survival and recovery, published this week, and gave his first major interview, to his old friend Alan Yentob..

Birth Chart

With half (5) of his planets in the Air element, and being born on a New Moon, with the Sun exactly conjunct the Moon (we have his birth time), we have a strong depiction of an intellectual here.  What is more, his conjunction falls exactly opposite the Galactic Centre, marking him out perhaps as a protagonist in life, an intellectual warrior.  His ruling planet Mercury is exactly conjunct the I.C. – showing intellect as the foundation for life, in Cancer (novelist) situated in 3td House.  The Sun and Moon are also conjunct Uranus, which makes him innovative, original, rebellious, with the power to shock.  Mercury exactly sextile Mars gives him quick nervous reactions normally, and the power to critique.  And Mercury’s trine to Jupiter gives a wide ranging, expansive mind.  Mars and Jupiter trine his Careerpoint (the Midheaven) make him a warrior in that arena, and also gave him opportunities for success.  Jupiter loosely square Pluto produces power struggles in life, while Saturn conjunct Pluto may be responsible for some of the dire events such as the fatwa and enforced years of hiding.  His North Node/Venus conjunction in Gemini in his 2nd House of finance reflects his championing of the Arts.  He states about his new book: “This was a necessary book for me to write: a way to take charge of what happened, and to answer violence with art”.  He is making the pen mightier than the sword.

Life and Career

Rushdie was born and grew up in Bombay, his family coming from Kashmiri Muslim stock.  At the age of seven his family moved to Rugby, England.  As a child he read P.G. Wodehouse and Agatha Christie.  At the age of 16 he read Lord of the Rings.  He later attended King’s College Cambridge, where he studied history.  He became a household name when his second novel Midnight’s Children won the Booker Prize in 1981.  This was a novel about India’s transition from British colonial rule to independence and partition.  Many of his books are set on the Indian subcontinent.  But it was his fourth novel, The Satanic Verses on 26th September 1988, which brought a wider fame and drama, when denounced by the Ayatollah.  Although Jupiter was transiting his natal 2nd House Venus (a publishing and financial boost) other transits included huge challenges such as Neptune square his Neptune (self-deception or delusion) and Pluto square his natal Pluto (self-sabotage or disempowerment).  The Fatwa itself was issued on 14th February 1989, the book being deemed “blasphemous against Islam”, and he was put under police protection.  He spent 10 years in hiding.  With the Fatwa eased in 1998, he went to live in the United States in the year 2000.

Chautauqua 2022

While on stage at the Chautauqua Institute in New York on 12th August 2022, talking about keeping writers safe, Hadi Matar stabbed him 12 times, while members of his audience tried to protect him from further harm and tried to save his life. He thought he was dying.  The transits at this event included Saturn squaring his Mars (inflicted cruelty), Uranus opposite his natal Jupiter (shock), Jupiter opposite his natal Neptune (religious and spiritual confusion).  The trial of Hadi Matar is due to take place in the Autumn.

The Book and Interview

It has been a long road to healing, but he is in a stronger place now, and has used the metaphor of “Knife” to cut a new slice into his literary career and to fight back.  He writes about the fact that after decades of nightmares about a would-be assassin, in the moment it happened, his first thought was “So it’s you.  Here you are”.  He is an atheist, and believes in free speech, themes which accompany his life story (fanatical religion and the right to publish): “The whole point of freedom of speech is that you have to permit speech you don’t agree with.”  He has dedicated the book to the people who saved his life.  Transits for the publication of this book include Mars trine Jupiter (fighting spirit), Jupiter on his Mars (self-esteem), Uranus sextile his Mercury (a publishing surprise), Uranus transiting his natal Mars (high spirits), Uranus trine his natal Midheaven (taking charge of his life direction) and Pluto trine his North Node (coming through trauma).  In his interview with his old friend Alan Yentob he talks about the metaphor of the knife in relation to his injuries and the antidote of writing a self-empowering account.  Losing an eye in the way he did has caused him upset every day.  His (fourth) wife Eliza also has provided  some moving testimony about thinking she would lose him, and the joy of having him pull through.

With other near escapes in his life story, Salman Rushdie appears to have used a few of his nine lives, but his strength of character lives on in his literary canon.

“Rushdie’s triumph is not to be other: despite his terrible injuries and the threat he still lives under, he remains incorrigibly himself, as passionate as ever about art and free speech… At one point he quotes Martin Amis: “When you publish a book, you either get away with it, or you don’t.” He has more than got away with this one. It’s scary but heartwarming, a story of hatred defeated by love.”

— Blake Morrison ― The Guardian

“Knife” – Meditations after an attempted murder, published by Jonathan Cape 2024


One of the most dynamic conjunctions we have had in years, Jupiter was conjoined with Uranus at 21 degrees Taurus in the early hours of this morning.  I hope it didn’t keep you awake…  This is a conjunction of breakthroughs, and last night we heard that Joe Biden had at last managed to push through a much needed package of aid to Ukraine.  Whatever you are wrestling with may depend on where the conjunction falls in your birth chart, but holds a prospect of dynamism, entrepreneurship and doing deals in that area of your life.  There is also an element of risk involved with this combination, but in my experience it is a breath of fresh air and I am a fan (it is one of my favourite conjunctions).  I hope that for you, in your life, it  is full of promise.

But the expansive conjunction is not the only astrological feature of the day.  We also have a conjunction of Venus and Chiron at 20 degrees Aries, highlighting the need for healing in relationships, and hopefully also providing the means to that healing.  Where there is a will on both sides, healing can be achieved.  Or forgiveness on one side can also move mountains.

Later on in the afternoon, a more challenging aspect takes place: that of Pluto squaring the Sun.  If there is drama, you may ascribe it to the Jupiter-Uranus conjunction, but it is more likely to be laid at the door of Pluto square the Sun.  The atmosphere becomes more thoughtful and serious.  This is a deep soul-searching aspect.  It is the sort of aspect which can be looked upon as a gamechanger, or watershed.  So if you are in integrity, you may be able to influence what side the coin lands on.

Tuesday (23rd) sees a Full Moon in Scorpio at 4 degrees of that sign. It’s a time to look within and examine your emotional health.  Another area demanding attention is that of shared finances and an attempt to balance material resources and needs between two people.  It is  one of the most intense Full Moons of the year.  For some there may be a temptation to lash out; some may be prickly about the conditions they find themselves in, and may be angry.  As with Sunday’s Venus-Chiron conjunction, forgiveness can be a key.

Though the week has challenges, you can draw on the positive energy of the Jupiter-Uranus conjunction if you are flagging later in the week, and there is another bonus on Thursday (25th) in that Mercury is Stationary prior to turning Direct.  There is some relief from recent communication glitches.  There may also be a turning point in your travel plans. Hopefully, if you have projects waiting to happen of a literary or technical nature, this may also be a go-ahead for you.  If you have been holding back on communication, you may feel the push to move forward again with it.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – dynamism and possible breakthroughs; poignant relationship healing; psychological drama
  • Tuesday – emotional high tide
  • Thursday – communications a-go-go

Aspects for the week beginning 14 April 2024

O.J. Simpson (1947 – 2024)

“They were a dramatic, fractious, mutually obsessed couple before they married, after they married, after they divorced in 1992, and after they reconciled.”

~ Sheila Weller

American football star, actor, murder suspect O.J. Simpson died this week, from prostate cancer, at the age of 76.  Although he was unanimously acquitted by a jury in 1995 after a lengthy and highly publicised trial (“the trial of the century”), for the murder of Nicole Brown, in many minds he was guilty.

Birth Chart

A Cancerian, his was a highly emotional chart, with half his planets (5) in the Water element, and he had 0 planets in the Earth element, which means he may have been regarded as ungrounded.  He rose to spectacular fame in American football (“one of the  greatest running backs of all time”) and blossomed in the acting profession (notably in “Roots” and the “Naked Gun” franchise), that he almost seems to have had a split personality when you consider the infamous shadow side of his character and destiny.  His North Node/Mars conjunction in Gemini displayed the Warrior Archetype.  Incidentally, as I describe his chart, if you have any of these characteristics in your chart, don’t think I am describing you!  His own soul and his own will are responsible for the outcome of what he “chose” to do with his life and astrological blueprint.

He had the Sun closely trine Jupiter, and for more than half of his life he was lucky… (a loaded word!).  Jupiter was closely conjunct the I.C. – he will have perceived himself as lucky, in a deeply rooted sense, from early in life.  The Moon in his chart was in Pisces, again making him extra emotional.  We do have a birth time for him, and can say that his Moon was square Venus: sometimes showing a problem with women, between the women in his life, or his own female side.  Emotions could be unstable, with the Moon square Uranus, too.  His Ascendant in Leo gave shape to his career arenas of sportsmanship and acting. Venus loosely conjunct Uranus, provided excitement in personal life, personal magnetism and charisma (possibly one factor in his acquittal).  But Venus square Neptune pointed to deception and obsession in connection with women.  Mars sextile Saturn gave him the capability of constructive and deliberate action, while Jupiter square Pluto produced power struggles, not least in his private life.  Saturn conjunct Pluto may have provided a melancholic, or macabre side – again, there are many people I know who have this conjunction and do not exhibit this in its shadow form. Pluto square Midheaven can describe the dramatic turn in reputation in his lifetime.

Life and Career

Orenthal James Simpson was born in San Francisco; his mother was an administrator at a psychiatric ward, and his father was a cook and a bank employee.  His parents separated when he was four or five, and the children were raised by their mother.  He grew up in San Francisco in a low-income neighbourhood.  He joined a street gang, and was detained in a youth guidance centre.  At this point he was described as a “really awful person” by a teenage friend who later became his first wife.  This shadow side was redeemed, and lifted out of that pathway, by sport.  He met a baseball star, Willie Mays, who helped him reform.  When attending Galileo High School, he began to play for their football team, and graduated in 1965.  By this time he had been hotly pursued by various universities for his talent as a running back, and chose the University of Southern California, Los Angeles.  With Mercury exactly trine the Moon, and trine Jupiter, he had a good brain from an astrological point of view, although his high school grades were mediocre.  His attention was more on sport.

He was picked in the NFL to play for the Buffalo Bills, but struggled to shine until a changeover in coach to Lou Saban, who allowed him to take a more standout role more suited to his talent.  He began to break records in the sport by 1973, but in the meantime he started to look at taking up roles in the acting profession.  In 1994 he appeared in the film “The Towering Inferno”.

He retired from the San Francisco 49ers in 1979, and gave himself over to acting in film and television.  In 1977 he starred in the television miniseries “Roots” [incidentally one of my all time favourite productions].  The “Naked Gun” franchise, which began in 1988, saw him star in a slapstick comedic role with Leslie Nielsen and Priscilla Presley.

Nicole Brown

O.J. was first married to Marguerite Whitley, a friend from schooldays, but he met Nicole Brown in 1977 while she was working as a waitress in a nightclub, and was smitten with her while already married to Marguerite.

The synastry between O.J. and Nicole has all the hallmarks of karma and obsession:

His Neptune was on her Moon, inidicating possible obsession; his Pluto on her Uranus will have evoked extremely strong feelings; her Pluto sextile his Venus indicate a depth of relationship, and her Pluto closely square his Nodal Axis, a karmic triggering.  From the outset, O.J. was never able to get these emotions out of his system.

O.J. and Marguerite were divorced in 1979, and Nicole married Simpson on 2nd February 1985.  Her transits for the wedding are much more ominous than those of her husband.  He was blessed with Mars sextile his natal  North Node, and another sextile between transiting Neptune and his natal Chiron.

For Nicole, she was pinned down by three difficult transits from Saturn: Saturn opposing her Sun, transiting her Jupiter by conjunction and squaring her natal Chiron – from the outset that might feel like a trap.  She also had to contend with Pluto on her Neptune, one of the most psychologically complex transits.

The marriage lasted seven years, and produced two children.  But the police visited their home numerous times due to claims of domestic violence from O.J.  At the end of 1989, on New Year’s Eve, Nicole phoned the police frightened that he was going to kill her.  They arrived to find her hiding behind a bush, injured.  Her transits included Uranus (shock) on her Saturn (vulnerability).  His transits are revealing in terms of showing that his temper could be triggered:  Mars was trine his Saturn, Pluto trine his Sun (both transiting planets capable of triggering violence) and Pluto on his natal Jupiter (dramatic and exaggerated energies).  It was claimed that at the time he said “if he ever caught her with anyone he would kill her.”

Nicole felt strong enough to file for divorce on 25th February 1992, with Jupiter trine her natal Mercury, and sextile her Venus;  Pluto trined her natal Mars (a self-empowerment); but with Saturn opposite her Uranus (a personal earthquake).  O.J. may have sensed his time in the marriage was up by then, as he had had an affair.  Neptune was sextile his Jupiter, and trine his Midheaven, but Saturn was opposite his Pluto (hard to take) and Uranus opposed his Sun (an estrangement).  Clearly, though, he was still deeply jealous about her having any other partners.

The Murder 

So to the murder itself, which took place on the night of 12th June 1994.  It was a double murder, involving Nicole’s then partner Ron Goldman, who she had only met six weeks earlier.  Like O.J, he was a Cancerian.  Nicole herself had Venus and Mars in that sign, which may have attracted her.

What would a court astrologer have made of the planetary positions on that night?  Nicole’s transits showed Pluto in close opposition to her Sun (a perilous transit), Uranus opposite her natal Mars (quite a violent transit too) and Jupiter square her natal Uranus (taken by surprise).  But regarding O.J. Simpson’s mood that night and triggering factors: Mars was transiting his natal Sun  (inflaming his temper), Mars was trine his natal Jupiter (exaggerating his energies), Jupiter squared his natal Pluto (his power exaggerated) and Pluto trined his natal Moon (dark thoughts towards a woman).  Astrologically, the guilt would be very believable.

A filmed car chase ensued by the police on 17th June 1994.  Again, the transits were very descriptive: Mars closely sextile his natal Sun (in a hurry); Uranus was opposite his natal Mercury, very symbolic of such a car journey; Chiron was square his natal Mars (harrassed in a hurry) and Mars was opposite his natal Jupiter (more haste).

His long televised trial found the nation spellbound, if not the world.  The jury members were drawn from the black community, and the defence rested to a great extent on the racial card.  The acquittal, when it came on 3rd October 1995, was still a shock to many.  His astrological planetary allies at the time were Mars on his natal Jupiter, exact to the day (freedom) and Uranus sextile his natal Moon in Pisces in 8th House (another, more emotional, component of freedom).  A civil suit found him guilty three years later, and incurred a fine of $33.5 million.  He was not able to pay, and got involved in a robbery in 2007 which led to a conviction on 4th October 2008.  With Saturn sextile his natal Sun, he was facing some of his karma.  He was imprisoned and not released until 2021.

The Kardashians

Matriarch of the Kardashian clan, Kris Jenner, was a friend of Nicole Brown, and her ex-husband Robert Kardashian was part of the dream team who helped to acquit O.J. Simpson.  Though by that time, she was married to Bruce Jenner, their lives seemed to be intertwined.

I wrote in 2017, when Bruce Jenner had transitioned as Caitlyn Jenner and written a book about the process:

“Enter Kris Kardashian, wife number three, an extremely strong character, previously married to the attorney Robert Kardashian, and bringing four children to the marriage.  Theirs was an acrimonious divorce, and Robert’s Saturn was conjunct Kris’ South Node (difficult past karma).  Kris Kardashian, matriarch of the Kardashian empire, has an amazing exact conjunction of Jupiter and Pluto in Leo in 10th House conjunct her Midheaven (Careerpoint).  It is no wonder she carved out such a successful long running television slot.

Her previous husband Robert Kardashian was a friend of O.J. Simpson, and successfully represented him at the murder trial.  Bruce had known O.J. from the sports circuit, and tended to try and avoid him (“I have tried to erase O.J. from my mind”) but they socialized with him and his wife Nicole.  This has the hallmark of a karmic relationship, or part of a soul group situation.”

The trial was traumatic at the time for Kris, and Caitlyn Jenner pronounced (quoted on the front page of one of the tabloids this week) “Good Riddance” at the news of O.J’s demise.

O.J. Simpson’s death this week may have been a merciful release for him (Jupiter was on his Midheaven (freedom), and he took his secrets, such as they might be, to the grave. His family were gathered together: two children from his first marriage, and two from his marriage to Nicole, visited him, and he died surrounded by family.  He had three grandchildren.


After last week’s intense festival of conjunctions, we start with three more conjunctions this week.

Tomorrow (Monday 15th) we have a conjunction of Mercury with Chiron at 19 degrees Aries, which can produce minor healing crises, but can also pave the way for problem-solving.   One area which is especially suited to this conjunction in Aries is finance and economy.  Chancellor Jeremy Hunt may have an important announcement, or there may be a major development concerning banks.  We met this conjunction in March, but because Mercury is Retrograde, we are re-meeting it now.

Wednesday (17th) brings us a conjunction of Venus with the North Node at 15 degrees Aries, which is helpful for expressing love in verbal or written form.  You may feel a situation is lost, then someone may remind you of the power of love in the context of karma and destiny.

Friday (19th) is a day to get things done, and requires a timetable, there is so much going on:

8.59 a.m. Mercury conjunct Venus at 17 degs Aries – This may soften some of the effects of Mercury Retrograde, and bring some happy socializing, with great conversations. It is good for cafe culture, is ideal for artistic or literary endeavours, or negotiations.  Your communications will have an artistic flair, so it’s a good time to get creative.

14.00 Hrs. The Sun goes into Taurus – Look for guidance about how you can support efforts at combating climate change, for instance.  It is a good day for gardening, and planting seeds.  Taurus is a sign which fosters a whole host of talents: cooking (seasonal vegetables), expressing art and music, and creative management of money (keep following Martin Lewis).  So the coming month is a favourable climate for learning to breathe and blossom in whatever talent you wish to nurture within your repertoire.

15.28 Hrs. Mars sextile Jupiter – A straightforward combination  of energy and enthusiasm, so a good way to employ excess feeling in an absorbing leisure activity of your choice.  You’ll be able to find that extra drive, for what you are wanting to achieve, or go that extra mile.

23.56 Hrs. Mars sextile Uranus – This promises dynamism for the day and the end of the week.  Engineering especially benefits from this aspect, but that also includes social engineering.  Electricity and Astrology are other areas which can be stimulated by this combination.  Cars, mechanics, mechanical goods and household appliances may receive a boost or a renewal.  This aspect can refresh your energies, if you have been feeling jaded.  It is helpful for both beginning new tasks, or completing long term projects. The power of surprise may be constructive today, too.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – healing issues highlighted
  • Wednesday – karmic relationships
  • Friday – getting things done: cafe culture; earth activities; energy allied with enthusiasm; surprise and engineering

Aspects for the week beginning 7 April 2024

John Torode and Gregg Wallace

Celebrating 20 years of Masterchef

“Cooking doesn’t get tougher than this!”

~ Gregg Wallace

John Torode and Gregg Wallace were celebrating 20 years of their collaborative presenting of Masterchef this week (on the This Morning sofa), although perhaps it is more true to say the completion of 20 years, as their format did not actually start until 2005.  Originally, the show was presented by Lloyd Grossman.  The show is hardly off our screens these days, with variations such as The Professionals, Celebrity Masterchef and Junior MasterChef.

John Torode

Birth Chart

With the Sun, and Mercury/Venus in Leo, John has to be the boss.  When the two began hosting the re-vamped Masterchef, he was the established name, and Gregg more of a sidekick.  Since then, Gregg has made a name for himself.  John carries the essence of the Leo individuality in many ways, not least for the fact that his Sun is at 0 degrees Leo and is unaspected.  Mercury in Leo likes to win an argument, and Venus in Leo is warm-hearted.  His Moon is in the cooking sign of Taurus, though we don’t know its precise position, as we do not have a birth time for him.  Mars loosely trine Jupiter provides his personality with energy allied with enthusiasm, while Mars closely trine with the North Node again likes to lead.

Life and Career

John Torode was born in Melbourne, the youngest of three boys, but his mother died when he was four and he moved to New South Wales to live with his grandmother, who introduced him to the joys of cookery. Leaving school at 16 and after apprenticeships in Melbourne, he came to the U.K. in the 1991 (aged 26) and continued to learn his trade as a chef in the Conran Group restaurants.

From 1996 he began a cookery slot on This Morning, and opened restaurants in London.

When he was approached in 2004 to front the re-vamped Masterchef, the producers put him together with Gregg Wallace.  He had known Gregg Wallace since working at Quaglino’s for the Conran organization, because Gregg had supplied the restaurant’s vegetables.  So their paths had already crossed…

Although the new show was prepared in 2004, its first airing was on 21st February 2005.  John’s main transit for that event was Saturn trine his natal Chiron in Pisces, which is constructive in many ways, for the start of a long running show, and gave him the opportunity to show his strengths.

The interaspects between him and Gregg show a similarity of interests (Mercuries closely sextile, and generational affinity (they were born within 9 months of each other and have the outer planets exactly conjunct).

Lisa Faulkner

Lisa Faulker, who had acting roles in Brookside and Holby City, took part in Masterchef in 2010, and emerged champion.  Two and a half years later she began seeing John Torode, and they embarked on a serious relationship.  Her Venus is exactly sextile his North Node, so the relationship was very much “meant to be”.  Her Saturn is exactly sextile his natal Sun, helping to ground him.

In recent years, John and Lisa have produced cooking shows together, John And Lisa’s Weekend Kitchen which started in March 2019 and John & Lisa’s Food Trip Down Under, which aired earlier this year.

Gregg Wallace

Birth Chart

Gregg has Sun closely conjunct Mercury in Libra, and Libra is an incurable romantic.  He certainly did not give up on love, because he has been married four times!  The conjunction forms a Grand Air Trine with Saturn in Aquarius, and the North Node in Gemini.  This keeps him curious, about love, life and food!  He has Venus exactly conjunct Uranus in Virgo, giving him exacting and unusual tastes, which is part of the specialism he has carved for himself.  Librans also have a reputation for being sweet-toothed, and he certainly enjoys tasting all those puds which he is required to judge!  He has made a living out of a discerning palate (food critic Jay Rayner also has Venus in Virgo).  Venus closely conjunct Pluto and exactly opposite Chiron accounts for the ups and downs in his private life.

Life and Career

Gregg Wallace was born in Peckham, and also left school early (aged 15).  He worked at Covent Garden Fruit and Veg Market.  From there he progressed to setting up his own greengrocery business, and later opened a restaurant in Putney.

His transits at the beginning of his long stayt at Masterchef were very impactful (more so than those of the more established John):

Pluto sextile his natal Sun (a profound event in his life), the South Node on his Mercury (a karmic reward in broadcasting) and Jupiter sextile his natal Mars (a chance to express his enthusiasms – he has Mars square Jupiter natally so can go over the top!).

Since the success of co-presenting Masterchef, he has diversified into various roles on television, such as the programme “Eat Well for Less?” and touring various food and other factories.

In 2014 he tried his hand at Strictly Come Dancing, leaving the show in the second week.

Fourth Marriage

After his second marriage ended in 2004 (a pivotal year for him) he was awarded full custody of their two children. He found love again in 2013, meeting Anne-Marie Sterpini on Twitter, and marrying her in August 2016.  John Torode was his best man.  Gregg and Marie have a son, Sid, who was born in May 2019.

Lloyd Grossman

Lloyd Grossman was the original host of MasterChef, when it began on 2nd July 1990, with the Sun exactly conjunct Mercury at 10 degrees Cancer.  It made an important impact on his life, with the transits of:-

Saturn exactly trine his Sun, a worthwhile enterprise; Uranus exactly trine his natal Venus, a new food-based venture; and Saturn sextile his natal Mars plus Saturn trine his natal Saturn, transits which reinforced the first two.

Like Gregg, he has Venus in Virgo (one hallmark of a gourmet).  I still buy his sauces, a brand he introduced to the supermarket shelves in 1995.

Of course, he had also presented Through the Keyhole, which snooped into people’s houses (“who lives in a home like this?”) beginning on 1st February 1983, so he was already a household name. His transits for that earlier breakthrough were Uranus square his natal Venus (surprise), Nodal Axis square his natal Neptune (intrigue) and Jupiter trine his Pluto (power).

The producers changed the format of MasterChef radically for John and Gregg’s version, and introduces changes all the time, so that we do not get bored.  All the different formats seem to work (the home cooks, the professional chefs, the celebrities and the juniors) – well they do for me, though I always have to mentally convert the dishes into vegetarian options.

“Just the fat, bald bloke on MasterChef who likes pudding”.

~ Gregg Wallace, referring to himself


It’s a week of conjunctions only, and there are four of them!  That means a series of burst of intensity to focus on and work with.

You’ve probably heard about tomorrow’s Solar eclipse (the Sun conjunct the Moon)… it will be seen in its totality in parts of Mexico, Texas and Canada.  Traditionally, it is regarded as a catalyst in the places where it can be seen.  It takes place at 19 degrees Aries, so may touch your lives more significantly if you have planets in that degree, or 19 degrees of any other sign.  You may find that it is a turning point or new beginning in the House it is placed in your birth chart.  Look to the future, unhampered by the past.  Set your intentions, wishes, creative visualizations and affirmations from your centre.

On the same day, we have the second of our conjunctions: that of  the Sun conjunct Chiron, also at 19 degrees Aries.  This may be a healing crisis, or an awkward situation.  Fortunately, Chiron transits often come with their own in-built solutions, because its ultimate purpose is healing.  You just need to turn the appropriate key (to go through the key hole – the glyph for Chiron is a key).  Something is ready to be released, and if your mind can’t work it out immediately, take a quiet moment and allow the answer to emerge.

The third conjunction appears on Wednesday (10th), being the combination of Mars and Saturn, at 14 degrees Pisces.  Some may find it tough and frustrating, especially if you are not used to your wings being clipped, or your will or energies encountering obstacles.  It can however bring an inner steel to concentrate on the job in hand, and even perhaps to live in the moment.  It may enable us to focus inward, economize on energy and thought.  You may then discover a new occupation which does not expend or over-consume.  However, in the current wars (of Ukraine and the Middle East) we may hear of further cruelties exacted upon innocents.

The last conjunction of the week to be visited upon us is that of the Sun conjunct Mercury at 22 degrees Aries, on Thursday (11th), which may bring an extra special quality to the day.  It is a good time to apply your mind with clarity,  concentrate and focus,  and make important statements.  Your perceptions may be heightened, both with regard to the microcosm (seeing the daisies) or the macrocosm (seeing things from a larger perspective than you are accustomed to seeing the issues).

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – turning point; healing directions
  • Wednesday – the frustration of obstacles
  • Thursday – seeing into reality

Aspects for the week beginning 31 March 2024

Bernard Williams (1929 – 2003)

“He understands what you’re going to say better than you understand it yourself, and sees all the possible objections to it, and all the possible answers to all the possible objections, before you’ve got to the end of your own sentence.”

~ Gilbert Ryle

Time for the next in my zodiacal series of Philosophers, and we now come to Virgo, for which I have chosen Bernard Williams, who was a leading British intellectual in the late 20th century.  His specialism was Ethics, and he was not so much an innovator as an interpreter, critic and analyst – very much a Virgoan way of operating.  Whenever we (hubby and I) were stuck in our early philosophical studies, a You Tube video of Bernard Williams helped enormously to clarify what we were grappling with.

Birth Chart

Bernard’s Sun in Virgo was square to Saturn, emphasizing the disciplined characteristics of that sign.  We do not have a birth time for Williams, so the precise position of his Moon is not known, but there is a trine between his Moon and Venus, indicating a good relationship with females: this is borne out in the evidence that he was a strong feminist and supporter of the females in his life.  Mercury sextile Venus contributed to the Writer Archetype in his make up.  One of the most emphatic complex of aspects in his chart was the conjunction of Mercury and Mars (The Critic Archetype) squaring his natal Pluto.  This combination meant that he could be brutal in his assessments.  Mercury trine Jupiter, contributed a wide-ranging Philosopher’s mind and curiosity.  Mercury closely sextile Saturn reinforced the analytical traits of his Sun sign Virgo.  Mars trine Jupiter gave him energy harmoniously allied with enthusiasm, which contributed to his passion for the truth.  The North Node was exactly conjunct Chiron in  Taurus, meaning his karmic mission was as a problem-solver – many Philosophers were born under Taurus.  Ted Honderich points out his “freshness in tackling problems”.

Life and Career

Bernard Williams was born in Westcliff-on-Sea, and went to school at Chigwell.  Reading on the subject of D.H. Lawrence (also Virgo) while there drew him to the subjects of ethics, and the problems of the self.  He was particularly taken with D.H. Lawrence’s advice to “find your deepest impulse, and follow that.”  He was awarded a scholarship to Oxford and read Classics, Ancient History and Philosophy at Balliol College.  The Philosopher Gilbert Ryle was one of his mentors there.  He originally met his future wife, the politician Shirley Williams (daughter of  the novelist Vera Brittain) while at Oxford, but they became close when they both spent time in New York: he was on national service, and she was studying economics at Columbia University.  The two of them returned to England;  he took up various academic fellowships, and she entered the worlds of journalism and politics.  They married in 1955, and he supported her political ambitions.


Bernard Williams became lecturer in Philosophy at University College London in 1959, and the pair had a daughter Rebecca in 1961, after Shirley had suffered four miscarriages.  Within his marriage and career he supported feminism – Philosopher Martha Nussbaum pronounced him “as close to being a feminist as a powerful man of his generation could be” (his Moon trine Venus).

In 1967 Bernard became the Knightsbridge Professor of Philosophy at the University of Cambridge and a fellow of King’s College.  While there he was instrumental in the decision by King’s to admit women, a pioneering act.  Shirley, meanwhile, pursued her political career.

Shirley wrote of their relationship:

“… [T]here was something of a strain that comes from two things. One is that we were both too caught up in what we were respectively doing — we didn’t spend all that much time together; the other, to be completely honest, is that I’m fairly unjudgemental and I found Bernard’s capacity for pretty sharp putting-down of people he thought were stupid unacceptable. Patricia has been cleverer than me in that respect. She just rides it. He can be very painful sometimes. He can eviscerate somebody. Those who are left behind are, as it were, dead personalities. Judge not that ye be not judged. I was influenced by Christian thinking, and he would say “That’s frightfully pompous and it’s not really the point.” So we had a certain jarring over that and over Catholicism.”

The marriage ended in 1974, and they both went on to remarry. He married Patricia Law Skinner, an Editor at Cambridge University Press, and they went on to have two sons.  Shirley Williams married a political scientist, Richard Neustadt.

You can read more about Shirley Williams in my astro-obituary of April 2021.


In the field of Ethics, Bernard Williams was notable for his ability to create thought experiments.  He was especially interested in the metaphysics of mind, and tackled the issue of personal identity.

He wrote works elucidating the philosophy of the father of modern philosophy, Rene Descartes, stating that there was an “absolute conception of reality” inherent in Descartes’ philosophical project.

Within moral philosophy, he argued against certain approaches, notably those of Kant, and Utilitarianism.  He argued  that the “honourable instincts of Kantianism to defend the individuality of individuals against the agglomerative indifference of Utilitarianism…may not be effective against the Kantian abstract character of persons as moral agents.”  Instead, acting according to personal identity, accuracy, sincerity and authenticity was key to living.

He created the phrase “moral luck”, observing how luck pervades ethical life, citing as an example the painter Paul Gauguin’s decision to move to Tahiti, in pursuit of becoming a great painter but in that act, abandoning his wife and children.

On the issue of G.E. Moore’s Naturalistic Fallacy, not a prominent philosophical dilemma, Bernard Williams was critical.  I only mention it here because (curiously) it has found its way into both Volumes I and II of my trilogy of novels (“The Quiet Office”).  The Naturalistic Fallacy derives from the work of G.E Moore, specifically his “Principia Ethica” written in 1903.  It is a criticism or loophole that he spotted in the work deriving back to at least the Utilitarianism of Jeremy Bentham and J.S. Mill, with the latter especially held to account over the “mistake”.  Bernard Williams’ view is that the naturalistic fallacy is a misnomer, as well as being a problem for naturalists.  He claims that Moore failed to see the distinction between naturalism and reductionism (a method whereby a number of things are reduced and explained in smaller units).

So I have personal reasons for selecting Bernard Williams as my Virgo Philosopher of choice, over say the more prominent John Locke.  When we were floundering in our studies, his expositions saved us!

“An analytical philosopher with the soul of a general humanist.”

~ Colin McGinn

“Being in Williams’s presence is at times painful because of that intensity of aliveness, which challenges the friend to something or other, and yet it was, and is, not terribly clear to what. To authenticity, I now think: to being and expressing oneself more courageously and clearly than one had done heretofore.”

~ Martha Nussbaum, 2015


Bernard Williams. Descartes, The Project of Pure Enquiry. 2nd ed. Routledge; 2005

Bernard Williams  Ethics and the Limits of Philosophy, New York 1985

Ed Ted Honderich.  The Oxford Companion to Philosophy.  Oxford University Press 1995


Mercury goes Retrograde tomorrow, Monday 1st April, which is no April Fool’s joke for some.  Depending on how you are normally affected, be clear in your communications for the next three weeks, in order to avoid misunderstandings and loopholes.  Although technology can go awry, it can be a good period to upgrade such devices.  You may have developed your own strategies, according to past experiences.

Wednesday (3rd) brings a conjunction between Venus and Neptune at 28 degrees Pisces.  This could be a serene, highly spiritual and artistically inspired conjunction, full of unconditional love.  This conjunction can express the best of the divine feminine.

Another conjunction occurs on Thursday (4th), that of the Sun with the North Node, at 15 degrees Aries, which gives a karmic flavour to the day.  This could bring a show of power by someone in your circle.  However, this show of power is firmly subject to the laws of karma, and if you have faith in the justice of that you’re O.K. (aren’t you?)  It could also heighten creativity if you are unattached to the power play of others.  Listen to the subtle instructions of the Universe…

I came across the words of Nassim Haramein on Facebook this week, which are relevant to this conjunction:

“There is a concept that a person can create their your own reality. This concept is only partially correct because it is generally discussed in a one-way manner i.e., a person sending a message to the field with a request/intention/prayer desiring an outcome. This is only ½ of the loop. The wave you’re sending is the feed-forward part of the loop. You need to realize that the wave coming back is the feed-back which is the rest of the universe creating its reality and responding to you.”

An ingress occurs on Friday (5th), with Venus entering Aries.  Venus waves goodbye to Pisces and enters Aries in the early hours.  Though Venus was sympathetic in Pisces, there is a warmer and more demonstrative feel while she is in Aries.  On the flip side, she is out of her comfort zone in the warrior sign, so there may be some uncomfortable wrestling with issues around whether to express true feelings or stay away from possible conflict.  Venus has a short stay in Aries, lasting until 29th April.

Last but definitely not least, Venus sextiles Pluto on Saturday (6th), an aspect which encourages soul-searching and arriving at deeper concepts and perceptions.  You can add extra artistry and harmony to your current projects.  You can also experience profound connections between people, and it’s a good time for evaluating what people mean to you. You may experience a volcanic eruption of creativity!  A good day for philosophical and psychological enquiries.

The week in bullet points:

  • Tomorrow – communication issues
  • Wednesday – spiritual art and music
  • Thursday – ethical and all-embracing creating of reality
  • Friday – demonstrative affection
  • Saturday – deep psychological interaction

Aspects for the week beginning 24 March 2024

Bryan Ferry, Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall

I have written about the love triangle between Pattie Boyd, George Harrison and Eric Clapton, and the entanglements of the various members of Fleetwood Mac…but it was pointed out this week that I haven’t written about the “love triangle” between Ferry, Jagger and Hall.  In the Daily Telegraph on 26th February, James Hall wrote about love triangles, and included this one.  He wrote: “Mick Jagger’s infatuation for Jerry Hall while she was with Bryan Ferry – he famously chased her around the ping-pong table at the couple’s home trying to kiss her – was said to be the inspiration behind both Miss You* (The Rolling Stones) and, later, the significantly harsher Kiss and Tell** (Ferry).”  As is well known, all three went on to develop other relationships, but it is interesting to look at this triad.

Bryan Ferry

I will start with Bryan Ferry, that fascinating Libran charmer, frontman of “Roxy Music”.  Bryan has a charismatic Jupiter/Chiron/Neptune conjunction in Libra.  With all his planets above the horizon in his birth chart, he was born to be high profile.  His Ascendant is Scorpio, and the astrological website Astrodatabank informs us:

“On the other hand, Ferry has a wit as dry as bone and a subtle graciousness. Unusually, for a man, he’s unafraid to admit shortcomings or vulnerability. He’ll even happily discuss his star sign (Libra with Scorpio rising: ‘There’s a bit of both in me’).”  You can really see that combination in his performance.  He has a quadruple conjunction, or stellium in Libra in his 11th House (of Bands).

He began dating Jerry Hall in 1975, when his Progressed Sun was sextile his natal Venus, a sign of a significant relationship, and they got engaged after she appeared as a model on one of his album covers.  The relationship lasted two years, until she linked up with Mick Jagger.  At that stage, her Progressed Sun had reached her natal Uranus, signifying a new attraction and excitement.

All three have karmic links, in terms of interaspects to the Nodes, and between Jerry and Bryan there are three exact such aspects: her South Node on his Moon, her North Node sextile his Jupiter, and her North Node sextile his Neptune. Also in their synastry are: her Sun exactly conjunct his natal Mars (a considerable spark), and her Chiron opposite his Pluto (some strain which may have contributed to the relationship not ending well; or maybe she saw Mick Jagger as a better prospect).

1977 may have been the right time for Bryan Ferry to move on, too.  For his Progressed Sun was trine his natal North Node.  He has married twice since.  He began dating Lucy Helmore, a model, after his relationship with Jerry Hall broke up, and they had four sons together.  They were married for 21 years.  The karmic ties between them were his North Node trine her Neptune, and his North Node sextile her Pluto.  Tragically, she died in 2018 of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, having battled depression for many years.  As mother of his sons, Bryan will have been impacted at the time, as shown in his transits by Saturn transiting his South Node.  He is on record as saying he was “saddened and shocked”.

Bryan has dated many high profile women, and had a brief marriage to Amanda Sheppard, but is currently unattached.

**”She wanna live that Rockstar life

So I’ma take her to a different world (nah)

No we don’t kiss and tell (nah)”

 ~ from “Kiss and Tell”, Bryan Ferry

Mick Jagger

Well, where do you start with Mick Jagger? –  multiple partners (not so much marriages), and eight children (on a par with Rod Stewart’s record).  At the last count, he has five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Prior to his relationship with Jerry, he had had a child with Marsha Hunt, and married Bianca with whom he had a daughter, Jade.  Bianca filed for divorce on account of his adultery with Jerry.

Mick and Jerry had a wedding type of ritual in Bali, which was later declared null and void, but not before they spent twenty two years together and had four children.  Jerry herself endured his many infidelities – up to a point.  Their karmic astrological links are her North Node trine his Jupiter, her North Node trine his Pluto, and her South Node closely conjunct his Uranus.  There is a strong Uranian theme between them – as has already been mentioned, when they got together ” her Progressed Sun had reached her natal Uranus, signifying a new attraction and excitement”.  And in her synastry with Mick, her Uranus is closely conjunct his Sun, and as also mentioned  her South Node is conjunct his Uranus.  The relationship will have been kept alive by keeping each other on their toes!  Mick’s Chiron on Jerry’s Jupiter will also have provided chemistry.

A notable relationship he had later was that with L-Wren Scott, from 2001, whose suicide in 2014 was a shock.  Though they were together for several years, the relationship does not look easy from an astrological point of view: His Pluto squared her Mercury, and his Saturn was on her Venus.  His Nodal Axis squared her Neptune (karmically adverse) and though his Mars trined her Pluto, that interaspect can be exhausting.  At the time of her death, Saturn was opposite his Moon and Pluto was trine his natal Venus, both showing the impact on a female relationship in his life.

He began a relationship with Melanie Hamrick in 2014 and is still with her.  We do not have a birth date for her, so cannot assess what works successfully for him now.

Mick Jagger and Bryan Ferry have very strong links in their charts, which will have brought themselves into each other’s orbit all those years ago, but the most telling in terms of their rivalry over Jerry Hall, is the combative nature of Mick’s Mars squaring Bryan”s Pluto.

* “I guess I’m lying to myselfIt’s just you and no one elseLord, I won’t miss you, childYou’ve just been blottin’ out my mindFoolin’ on my time”

~ from “Miss You”, the Rolling Stones

Jerry Hall

I wrote in 2016:

“Statuesque blonde Jerry has  the Sun in Cancer and Moon in Aries.  She has 0 Earth Planets in her chart.  She has a very powerful Pluto, positioned exactly trine the Galactic Centre.  Jupiter conjuncts this Pluto, and Venus sextiles the conjunction, drawing her to powerful men, but she also has her own power.  Her Venus sextiles Jupiter, which brings up the Socialite Archetype.  In addition, she has Venus trine Neptune, associated with beauty and modelling (a Supermodel, no less).  She has Jupiter sextile closely her Neptune, so would be confident of her own spirituality and connection with the Universe.”

With Jerry and Mick both having Jupiter conjunct Pluto (expansive power), it is no wonder they became a power couple.  We do not have a birth time for Jerry, but Mick’s power conjunction is in his 2nd House of Financial Earnings.

At their “wedding” in Bali, Mars was transiting Jerry’s South Node, which was not a peaceful vibe.  That Uranian spark was there for him, in the shape of the activation of Mars on his Uranus.  Mars was also prominent for him, in a a trine to his Midheaven (boosting his profile) and Neptune trine his natal Mars.

In their 22 years together, Jerry put up with a lot of Mick’s philandering.  When their relationship ended in 1999 she took her time in choosing her next partner, but chose another symbol of power, Rupert Murdock the news magnate. She was much younger than both Brian Ferry and Mick Jagger, but of course the age gap between her and Rupert Murdoch (25 years) was much more of a talking point, and he was by then in his eighties and one of the wealthiest men in the world.  She would be his fourth wife.  His Jupiter was exactly conjunct her natal Sun, so she may have considered herself lucky and expanding her prospects.  They married on 4th March 2016, with Mars bringing enthusiasm in a square to Jerry’s Jupiter.  With Jupiter sextile Rupert’s Pluto at the time, it represented an increase of his power.  She may have brought him some happiness for a time, as Neptune was trine his natal Jupiter.  Jerry was reportedly shocked (“blindsided”) when he ended their relationship with an 11-word email in 2022, and there were 7 transits from Saturn to points in her chart.  She filed for divorce citing “irreconcilable differences”.  However, there was also an element of liberation, in a trine of Jupiter to her North Node.

So, a strange triangle, that of Jerry, Bryan and Mick, and all of them going on to explore other relationships.  Would Jerry have stayed with Bryan, if Mick hadn’t come along?  Well there are no reports of them getting back together now they are both single.  Mick seems settled in his most recent relationship.  Jerry seemed to get bolder with each chosen partner, but you can’t get much bolder than a liaison with the much older Rupert Murdoch.  She would have a long way to go to find a progression on that, from her previous pattern, but may settle for less in the future.


A Lunar Eclipse this week, but not a lot going on in the aspects otherwise.  This afternoon we have a sextile between Venus and Jupiter, a sociable and romantic aspect, suited to writing about love triangles.  This aspect is one of the high spots of the year aspectwise.  The day could bring hope and happiness, socially or romantically.  Engagements, celebrations and virtual parties could be on the agenda.  This sextile combines luck and love.  Enjoy!

Tomorrow morning (Monday 25th) we have a Lunar Eclipse (Full Moon) at 5 degrees of Venus-ruled Libra – sleep may be fitful tonight!  This Full Moon is emotionally dedicated to relating, while the Sun which opposes it in Aries wants its own way.  Thus a delicate balance operates, which may be resolved in common aims, e.g. in a united effort.  As an eclipse, it represents a turning point.  Change may benefit some, and be discomforting for others.

The last aspect of the week (I promised you it was a short list) is Venus sextile Uranus, which occurs on Thursday 28th.  Venus sextile Uranus is, like today’s sextile, very social and may produce some interesting outward manifestations.  For example, a chance meeting on a walk in the park or while out shopping is not out of the question, and may result in an impromptu coffee interlude.  Sometimes Venus-Uranus meetings can be strange or seem random.  Venus sextile Uranus is on the pleasantly uplifting side of the equation, and can bring reunions.  The three S’s come to mind: spontaneity, synchronicity and serendipity.

So, an interesting sandwich, or triangle, of aspects this week, to match the love triangle blog, and involving more than a smattering of love energy from Venus.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – love and luck
  • Tomorrow – turning point
  • Thursday – love and surprise

Aspects for the week beginning 17 March 2024

Diane Abbott

“It’s like trying not to be racist but you see Diane Abbott on the TV and you’re just like, I hate, you just want to hate all black women because she’s there”

~ Frank Hester

A shocking statement reported this week from Frank Hester a few years ago had a wave of sympathy sent Diane Abbott’s way, and political reverberations which are still ongoing.  Diane was already the MP receiving the most abuse, but this was a dangerous attack.  I have always had a certain amount of sympathy for her, based on the loyalty of her constituents, but she has received criticism of some of her statements in the past (even this morning from Theo Paphitis on Laura Kuenssberg’s programme).  And her loyalty to Jeremy Corbyn has also marginalized her politically since the purge of anti-semitism under Keir Starmer.  One of her statements was deemed to be anti-semitic and caused her to lose the whip last year, and she is still under investigation for it.

Birth Chart

Diane has 6 Air planets (mentally focussed) and 5 Cardinal planets (enterprising).  She has the Sun in Libra exactly trine the Moon if she were born at Noon (we do not have a birth time for her).  The Sun in her chart is trine the North Node, so she has a strong sense of destiny.  Mercury trine Jupiter increases her open-mindedness and intellect (she was Cambridge educated).  But Mercury is squared by Uranus, so she is not afraid to be controversial, and does not feel she has to toe the party line.  Mercury conjunct Neptune means that when under stress, she can get confused.  A few years ago, she made some confused statements, and claimed it was because her type 2 diabetes had got out of control.  She also has Saturn conjunct her Mercury and Chiron square to her Mercury, complicating her mental outlook.  Jupiter closely trine Saturn gives her some degree of  balanced judgement, to compensate for this.  Jupiter trine Neptune confers a good relationship between religion and spirituality, contributing to decent moral values.

Life and Career

Diane was born in Paddington and studied History at Cambridge University, under the tutelage of Simon Schama.

She herself made history in 1987 when she was elected as MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington, the first black female MP.  That general election was held on 11th June 1987, so we can look at her transits at the time: Jupiter square her natal Uranus in Cancer, a surprise; Uranus trine her natal Pluto, groundbreaking and life-changing; and Pluto sextile her natal Mars – all power to her elbow.

In 2003 she prided herself on speaking out and voting against the Iraq War. But it was also in that year that she was criticised for sending her son to a private school, against political principles.  Her son stated that he had insisted.  That year was her Chiron Return in Capricorn (difficult issues of conscience).

She saw herself as leadership material (5 Cardinal planets and the Sun trine the North Node) and stood in the 2010 Labour leadership election, which was won by Ed Milliband.  He appointed her as Shadow Minister for Public Health.  She also took a shot at the London Mayoral election in 2016, unsuccessfully.

Under the Labour leadership of old friend Jeremy Corbyn in October 2016 she was appointed as Shadow Home Secretary.  In the run-up to the 2017 election, she went through a phase of what might be called brain fog, giving poor interviews.  This she attributed to type 2 diabetes affecting her performance.

Last April (2023) she lost the whip, from her writing that Jewish people, Irish people and Travellers are not always subject to racism.  She claimed it was a draft letter which had accidentally got published.

The transits for this event are heavy, and will have made a huge impact on her: Mars opposed her Chiron, a dangerous mistake; Jupiter trine her natal Pluto, overstepped the mark in expressing her truth and power; Saturn opposed her natal Venus in Virgo in 10th House, loss of reputation and standing politically; Neptune square her natal Jupiter, a delusion exposed; Pluto on her North Node in Capricorn in 3rd House, karmic drama.

Though a strange concept, there was a similar statement by Whoopi Goldberg in 2022, for which she was suspended for a while from a television programme, “Let’s be truthful about it because Holocaust isn’t about race.”

Keir Starmer

The synastry between Keir Starmer and Diane Abbott is mixed, and if she is allowed back in the fold there is potential for them to work together (their Marses closely sextile).  The volatility is her Mars close to his Sun/Pluto conjunction in Virgo, and her Mars opposite his Jupiter.  His transits when she lost the whip were Jupiter opposite his Venus, some contention with a female; and Mars possibly opposite his Moon (we do not have his birth time), in which case, again, conflict with a female.  Although he defended her rigorously at PMQs this week, she crtiticized the Labour as well as the Tory party in later comments.  Keir Starmer also has a dilemma: her comments last year were not personal, and do not endanger someone’s life in the way that Hester’s have, but the ongoing investigation probably involves evaluating whether they go against the rigorous purge of anti-semitism Keir has set out.  Deputy Leader of the Labour Party Angela Rayner has said she would like the whip restored to Diane.  The Independent has reported that the delay in her investigation is due to her refusing to attend an anti-semitism course of training.

Frank Hester

We neither have a birth date or time for Frank Hester, only a birth month (April 1966).  Hester owns The Phoenix Partnership, founded in 1997, specializing in healthcare technology.  Rowena Mason writing in the Guardian yesterday (16/3/24) says:  “Frank will be the biggest Conservative donor in history, contributing £10m towards Rishi Sunak’s election and potentially another £5 on top of that – if the party keeps his money”.

He absurdly claimed his remarks, seen at the top of this blog, were nothing to do with race or gender.  He was defended for at least 24 hours, while the Conservative party decided what to do, bearing in mind they had accepted a £10 million donation for him towards their election campaign.  Various Tory MPs defended Hester, but eventually Rishi Sunak went as far as saying the remarks were racist and wrong, but could not say the money should be returned.  Hester only apologised for making “rude comments”.  If a birth date becomes available, I can fill in this picture.

Diane’s response to Hester’s remarks is recorded as: “Reading his remarks I was upset but not surprised.  This is partly because I am hardened to racist abuse  I receive hundreds of abusive emails, phone calls and  letters monthly, and the numbers shoot up whenever I am in the media.”

This chimes with her transits, which are milder than for the original event which cast her out.

Lindsay Hoyle

I wrote sympathetically of Lindsay Hoyle as recently as 25th February, but he still seems to be in a sticky patch.  He had tried to be low key since the controversy over “the Speaker Lindsay Hoyle, against protocol allowed an extra amendment to be put forward by the Labour Party for voting, a new stance for them, stealing thunder from the SNP” and calls for his resignation.  He was suitably chastened, but found himself in further trouble on Wednesday, when Diane Abbott got up from her seat in the Commons 46 times to speak on her ordeal, only to be snubbed by Speaker Lindsay Hoyle, claiming there wasn’t enough time.  On that occasion, Mars was trine her natal Neptune, a wave of public sympathy towards her.  For Lindsay, Neptune was sextile his natal Mercury, and he seems to have succumbed to the negative side of Neptune, confusion/indecision/deception.

Rishi Sunak

This week’s controversy was considerably complicated by Rishi Sunak’s purported new drive to tackle extremism and hatred in society.  This was triggered by the election of George Galloway at the end of February.  He made an unexpected speech outside No. 10 the next day.  In this precipitous and fearful speech he appeared to be fervent in his sentiments. However, this week it was pointed out that these ideas did not square with him keeping Hester’s donations, a further £5 million of which is in the pipeline.

At the time of the speech, Uranus was conjunct his Sun by 2 degrees (sudden action);  Uranus was trine his Saturn (trying a new way to cope); the South Node was on his Pluto in Libra (a sensed danger); Chiron was closely opposite his natal Pluto (a headache); and in the general chart of the day Chiron was close to the North Node (people trying to fix things).

Michael Gove

As part of the efforts to tackle extremism, Michael Gove launched a new initiative this week, raising a new definition of the word.  His efforts were adversely timed, astrologically: Mars from Aquarius closely squared his natal Mars in Scorpio (swimming against the tide); Mars squared his Neptune in Scorpio (sowing confusion).  He has Mars closely conjunct Neptune in Scorpio natally and tends to fight with deception.

In addition, Uranus was trine his Pluto (he wants Change at the moment); Uranus opposes his natal Mars/Neptune (he was sailing into another row); Uranus in Taurus was square his natal Jupiter in Leo (taking a gamble); and Pluto is square to his Nodal Axis (an obfuscation too far, karmically).

On Question Time in Liverpool on Thursday evening, not one audience member raised their hand in support of his scheme

My own feeling is that Hester’s money needs to go to an anti-racism charity, or a permanent bodyguard for Diane Abbott.


Are there any future prospects of happier times for her in the near future?

There could be an upswing in her affairs over the coming year, depending on where her Moon is situated (we do not have a birth time for her) as Jupiter transits late Taurus and early Gemini.  A more predictable upturn in her affairs would occur at her Jupiter Return in Gemini around 22nd/23rd May 2025, a liberating time for her – better status, or even retirement.  There may also be more surprises in store over the next year, if Uranus transits her natal Moon (depending on the latter’s position).


Late this morning, the Sun was conjunct Neptune at 27 degrees Pisces, characterized by mystery and enigma.  We may wonder where we are, struggling to get our bearings.  If we can establish where we are, we may be able to access higher inspiration for whatever we are engaged upon.  It is a day when progress can be made on subtle and spiritual issues, with memorable ethereal experiences.

Tomorrow (Monday 18th) Mercury conjoins with the True North Node, bringing the karma of thought and speech to our attention. Choose your words wisely.  Much can be taught and learned under this aspect, and ideas exchanged.

This influence is extended to Tuesday (19th) for the Mean North Node reading of the Mercury conjunction, so extra nuance to the above may be added over the two day period.

A new outlook breezes in with the Spring Equinox on Wednesday (20th), with the Sun entering Aries.  It’s the beginning of the astrological year.  There are definite signs that Spring has sprung in the U.K.: the camelias in our garden have been out for a while, and the magnolias trees are shining brightly. For the population generally, if your energy has been a little low lately, you may feel yourself reviving.  It may be time to sprinkle that packet of wildflowers you have been saving for this moment, if you trust this slightly warmer spell…

There is also another conjunction with Mercury on Wednesday, one with Chiron.  This is a day you can focus on problem-solving.  If you don’t have a problem pre-prepared, the Universe will kindly oblige by alerting you.  There may also be a high degree of mental tension or anxiety in the air.  But use what comes up to find solutions, at whatever depth you need to engage with them.  One area which is especially suited to this conjunction in Aries is finance and economy.  Chancellor Jeremy Hunt may have an important announcement, or better still, Martin Lewis (our spiritual Chancellor!).

On to Thursday (21st) and a constructive sextile between the Sun and Pluto towards the evening. This can bring powerful help.  If you dig deep, you can find the treasure you need.  It is a profound aspect which may help to show us the direction we need to solve our collective problems, and understanding the meaning behind our dilemmas.  This sextile can bring a profound air of quiet contemplation.  It is a valuable time of assessment.

In the very late evening (past the bedtime for some people) Venus will be conjunct Saturn at 12 degrees Pisces.  This is not an easy prospect in terms of relationships or economics.  You will be looking more seriously at your close relationships, and evaluating what is important to you.  The care of the elderly may be a particular preoccupation.  The optimum condition for this conjunction would be loyalty and commitment, but there may need to be some letting go before that can be arrived at.  Finance too may be a cause for concern.  Preoccupations may lead to a restless sleep.

Another change of emphasis comes on Friday (22nd) with the ingress of Mars into Pisces, again late at night, but this time more conducive to sleep.  While its placement in Aquarius was humanitarian, and looked after the underdog, Pisces is even more compassionate, and very empathetic.  Pisces is also a very charitable sign, so we will see more appeals in that respect, and more people attempting feats which stretch them, e.g. in order to support the NHS and other worthwhile causes coming to light.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – mystery and enigma
  • Tomorrow – karma of thought and speech
  • Tuesday – further nuances of karmic thought and speech
  • Wednesday – Spring springing; problem-solving
  • Thursday – powerful thought; letting go
  • Friday – compassionate activity