Sun in Aries can be very individualistic and authentic, which left wing politician Tony Benn, who died this week, undeniably was. However, he would not have wanted to be pigeon-holed or categorised by astrology or anything else. His was the freedom to think and act as he pleased, with the prerogative to change his mind. In early photos of Benn, you can really see the Aries glint in his eyes.

Within the dynasty of his family setting, he was an individual, and changed the course of the family direction. His father was a liberal politician, and his son Hilary is a much more conventional and mainstream Labour politician. That Tony Benn broke the mould by renouncing the peerage status of his family is shown by his Mars squaring his father’s karmic Nodal Axis. His Ascendant was also conjunct his father’s South Node, further emphasizing this. He fought all his life against privilege and for fairness and justice in society.  At the time when he renounced his peerage the transiting North Node was sextile his Pluto (a deep seated karmic change). Jupiter was also trine his Ascendant, so he will have experienced a real sense of triumph.

His mother Margaret had Mars conjunct his North Node, which will have instilled courage for his karmic mission, to do what he came here to do. She was very highly principled in her Christianity and that too affected his resolve. Their Neptunes were sextile (spiritual harmony) and her Pluto was sextile his Sun (again installing a deep courage).

Tony Benn’s early career was divisive to the Labour Party, but he mellowed and later became a “national treasure”.  Nowadays the integrity of his character is much hailed.

I have read his diaries, and luckily for astrologers, he slips in the time of his birth within these pages. An Aries Sun often takes a lot of colour from the Ascendant in a chart, and in his case the ascendant is Virgo, which gave him a pedantic mind and a great deal of perfectionism, plus a predilection for diary writing.  The warriorship he displayed came from his Aries Sun, and Mars at the top of his chart – warriorship in action in his career and persona out in the world.

Mars bisects an exact trine between his Moon and Venus, which made him a warrior for peace, such as in C.N.D. and his presidency of the “Stop The War” coalition.

He made a good marriage, with his American wife Caroline, who shared his political views, and they had a large family of four children (Jupiter in his 5th House).

It is generally recognised that he did not succeed in his dearest wish to change society to the fairness and justice of his vision, but he did succeed in always being true to himself.

At his death the finality of transiting Pluto exactly square his natal sun was being played out.

The Observer leader today sums up his worth nicely: “He had the facility to reach across the generations and to re-energise the debate about what should and should not constitute the common good”.