Charles Manson and Charles Bronson

I’m not a fan of crime, but I did work for four years in the Criminal Department of a law firm.  What I concluded from that was that many criminals, looking at their history, don’t stand much of a chance from their early life, whether from psychological or sociological reasons.  With the level of violence in society showing no signs of abating, I wonder if criminal tendencies could be spotted earlier and rehabilitation begun at an earlier age.  But then criminals are innocent until proven guilty.  This week (on Thursday 23rd November) Jon Venables, one of the killers of James Bulger, was sent back to prison (for unrelated offences).  It is possible from his chart (no birth time is available) that he had the Moon conjunct Chiron, indicative of early psychological wounds.  His main transit at the time of committing the murder was Saturn opposite his Sun.  He was responsible for the joint killing at the young age of 10 years, and been given anonymity after leaving prison.  His later conviction (possession of child abuse imagery) was of a lesser crime, but one wonders how far rehabilitation can be successful, and what more can be done in this area.

Charles Manson

American 83-year old Mass murderer Charles Manson died in prison on 19th November (last Sunday) of natural causes.  He was the head of the “Family” cult, and had the Moon (family) exactly conjunct his North Node (karma), symbolizing this. On 6th August 1969 Sharon Tate, the wife of film director Roman Polanski, and others were killed  in Los Angeles.  His transits on that day were Mars exactly opposite his natal Chiron, Jupiter was exactly trine his natal Moon/North Node (he may have been high as a kite) and Neptune was exactly trine his Pluto. In their synastry, Sharon Tate’s natal Sun/Mercury in Aquarius was exactly conjunct Charles/Manson’s Moon/North Node, which proved to be a fatalistic combination.  Her Pluto was exactly square his Ascendant, moreover.  Several other people were killed that night, and he was said to have ordered the killings, and not actually carried them out himself.

His birth chart has the Sun/Venus in the strong willed,  emotional and charismatic sign of Scorpio but squaring Saturn, showing a lack of feeling but also depicting his thwarted musical ambitions, which were a source of bitterness.  Mars was exactly conjunct Neptune in his chart, and he led a drug fuelled existence on cannabis and LSD in the late 1960s.  Nodal Axis exactly square Midheaven/I.C. Axis may say something about being at odds with his karma.

He was born to a 16-year old unmarried mother, and he never actually knew his father (Pluto conjunct the I.C. depicting his origins).  The first crime of which he was convicted was armed robbery, at the age of 13.

He once told a prison psychiatrist: “I’m special.  I’m not like the average inmate.  I have spent my life in prison. I have put five people in the grave. I am a very dangerous man.”  Among the labels given to him were that of schizophrenia and paranoid delusional disorder.

At his death, Uranus was exactly square his natal Pluto (ruling planet) in Cancer in 3rd House.

Charles Bronson

British prisoner Charles Bronson recently married an ex-soap actress from Emmerdale and Coronation Street (on 14th November).  Like Charles Manson, he has tried to draw strength from his alliances and admiration from women in his life.  He has been referred to as the “most violent prisoner in Britain” and has spent time in high-security psychiatric hospitals.

He was not born with the name Charles Bronson, but named himself after the American actor of the tough guy image (whose chart bears no resemblance to his, but there is a possible karmic link or glamour-inspired motive with the actor’s Neptune on the prisoner’s South Node).  His early life does not seem to have been blighted in the same way as Charles Manson, indeed he seems to have come from a respectable background, and an aunt offered a portrait of the young Bronson:

“As a boy, he was a lovely lad. He was obviously bright and always good with children. He was gentle and mild-mannered, never a bully; he would defend the weak”

Like Manson, he was caught stealing at the age of 13, and embarked thereafter on a life of crime.  He attempted to poison a fellow prisoner in 1976, and in December 1978 was sent to Broadmoor, where he counted Ronnie Kray among his friends.  He attempted to strangle another inmate, Gordon Robinson.  However, he has never been convicted for murder.

While in prison he has produced artworks and written books, and re-named his surname Salvador after Salvador Dali.

The birth date of this his third wife, Paula Williamson, is not available.  At the time of this marriage Mars (again playing a key role in his life) was exactly sextile his Sun.  Uranus squared his Venus (changing his relationship status!).  Neptune was sextile his natal Chiron (a healing) but Pluto was opposite his Uranus (signifying some extreme change going on, which seems to have more to it than a wedding). She says  “I’m madly in love with Charlie and he’s madly in love with me. But even I can’t believe I’m marrying Britain’s most notorious prisoner”.  She has this year done the rounds of daytime television talk shows, and there may be genuine feeling there with Venus conjunct Jupiter in the marriage chart.  But the marriage time of 2 p.m. on that day reveals Neptune closely conjunct the Ascendant in Pisces, hinting that some illusion is prominent.

Mercury in Sagittarius in Bronson’s chart is unaspected, which can denote lawlessness.  Venus squares Saturn (lacking feeling), like Charles Manson but exact, with Venus in Capricorn exacerbating the coldness.  Venus also squares Neptune (sensation-seeking), but Neptune closely conjunct Saturn shows a tendency to depression.  Depending on the position of the conjunction in his chart (we do not have a birth time), it may well show up the fact that his life has been mostly spent in incarceration.  Mars is strong in Bronson’s chart, with the Sun sextile Mars, and Mars in Aquarius conjuncting his North Node – as well as the emphasis on violence in his life, he has written fitness books: “I’m the king of the press-ups and the sit-ups”.

Psychiatrists have not settled on labels for Bronson, but have considered Psychopathy and Schizophrenia.  Another feature of his personality is narcissism, with the Moon opposite Mars and in the sign of attention-seeking Leo.

He says of himself: “I’m a nice guy, but sometimes I lose all my senses and become nasty. That doesn’t make me evil, just confused.”  A self-evaluation very different from Charles Manson’s, which could be seen as a product of his more upbeat Sunsign of Sagittarius as against Manson’s Sunsign Scorpio (which is often wrongly maligned).


Venus trines Chiron today, which offers the opportunity for some healing, especially in the realm of relationships or money.  The healing power of love comes to the fore.  This aspect reminds us of the healing power of love.  Keep the heart open, and the results are always rewarding.

On Tuesday (28th) Mercury conjuncts Saturn at 27 degrees in Sagittarius (at the Galactic Centre).  This conjunction on its own assists us in our powers of concentration, although some might experience this as drudgery.  However, its placement in Sagittarius, lifts it slightly in mood and also widens its consciousness.  So we may be able to see the detail and its context, the trees and the wood.  Travel may still be delayed or difficult, though.

This mental focus dominates the middle of the week, and then on Friday (1st December) Venus enters Sagittarius.  This is the signal for more uplift, and anticipating the festive nature of the season and party atmosphere (the works do, for instance!).  Hearts under Venus in Scorpio are intense, but under Venus in Sagittarius more naturally expansive in contrast.  You may be more open to friending on Facebook, for instance, having deleted a few to prune and declutter while Venus was in Scorpio!

Another influence on Friday, that of Mars opposite Uranus, is more disruptive, and incident-prone.  Try to minimize health and safety risks under this aspect, especially in connection with cars, dogs, machinery and electrical appliances.  You may find people extra excitable (perhaps there may be another suspected terrorist incident in the news) and calmness may be a valuable commodity. Brush up your meditational skills, and be a port in the storm.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – healing relationships
  • Tuesday – concentration, but also wider application of the mind
  • Friday – social uplift, but unpredictability