August Astromusings

Jewish Palestinian wedding

Jewish Palestinian wedding

War or Peaceful Coexistence?
It is a while since I have written a post but so much is happening on a national and global scene that I felt I must record some of my thoughts and feelings on some of the most pressing issues both here in Australia and abroad. It has been a month fraught with violence and anger on the world stage. More conflict between the Palestinians and the Israelis. It has been heartening to see on social that many Jews are in favour of peace between Israelis and Palestinians and are actively campaigning for a Palestinian state. It culminated this week with a wedding between an Israeli woman Maral Malka and a Palestinian man  Mahmoud Mansour despite all the protests from far right Israeli groups chanting, “Death to the Arabs.” The groom told Israel’s Channel 2 TV the protesters failed to derail the wedding or dampen its spirit. “We will dance and be merry until the sun comes up. We favour coexistence,” he said.

Gaza Genocide
We have all been subject to the horrific images of the death and injuries of innocent Palestinian children and families over the past month. Many of us cringed when the Australian Attorney General Liberal Senator Attorney George Brandis told a Senate hearing this week that it’s inappropriate to describe East Jerusalem as “occupied”. The comment has caused a stir in the Palestinian territories where the policies of the new Australian Government are already viewed with deep suspicion. His comments brought a quick response from Hanan Ashrawi In her office in Ramallah, PLO executive committee member Hanan Ashrawi read the comments with disgust.  “I couldn’t believe this because how can you hear such language from an attorney-general supposedly who knows the law, who knows international law, who is in such blatant violation of international law, who issues such statements that are disgraceful, really. It is shameful that Australia has reached such a situation.” The outcry from Arab countries with threatens of sanctions forced Brandis to back down and the Liberal government to go into damage control.

Hedy Epstein Holocaust survivior

Hedy Epstein Holocaust survivor

Mars in Scorpio square Jupiter in Leo
What has been going on in the skies to escalate this conflict in Gaza between Israel and the Palestinians? In early August Mars in Scorpio squared Jupiter in Leo. Mars which rules war, conflict and separation and with Jupiter intensifies the Martian impulse escalating violence and conflict globally with the shooting in Ferguson Missouri of the young black man, Michael Brown by a trigger happy white policeman which ended in riots, the escalation of the conflict in Iraq culminating in the public beheading by ISIL of US journalist, James Foley.

There is an interesting link between Gaza and the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson in the person of Hedy Epstein a holocaust survivor, protesting over the shooting of Michael Brown and activist and member of  the Free Gaza Moment.

Hedy Epstein, a 90-year-old Holocaust survivor, was arrested on Monday during unrest over the death of Michael Brown.
Epstein, who aided Allied forces in the Nuremberg trials, was placed under arrest in downtown St. Louis, Missouri, “for failing to disperse” during a protest of Gov. Jay Nixon’s decision to call the National Guard into Ferguson. Eight others were also arrested.

“I’ve been doing this since I was a teenager. I didn’t think I would have to do it when I was 90,” Epstein told The Nation during her arrest. “We need to stand up today so that people won’t have to do this when they’re 90.” Epstein is currently an activist and a vocal supporter of the Free Gaza Movement.

Robin Williams with young girl actress

Robin Williams

Robin Williams as Mrs Doubtfire

Robin Williams as Mrs Doubtfire

August Full Moon and the Death of an Icon
The August Full Moon in Aquarius brought shock waves around the world when the much loved comic icon Robin Williams took his own life by hanging himself on 11 August 2014. Social media was inundated with tearful farewells for a cherished actor and comedian. I felt so shocked and watched all the tributes online and on  TV including a rerun of Mrs Doubtfire which would brought tears of laughter and sadness simultaneously. I watched a rerun of The Bird Cage and remembered his other roles in Dead Poets’ Society and Good Will Hunting.

Robin William's natal chart

Robin Williams’ natal chart

It is interesting to look at Robin Williams’ natal chart which gives some clue to his Universal appeal. I looked up Robin’s chart on AstroDataBank. According to their data, based on a copy of his birth certificate, he was born July 21, 1951 at 1:34 PM, CST, Chicago, Illinois USA. No wonder he touched so many people in his many diverse roles with his Sun in sensitive Cancer and his Moon conjunct his North Node in dreamy soulful Pisces and his ascendant in intense Scorpio – so much water! He also has Mars conjunct Uranus in Cancer and Venus conjunct his South Node.  It was well known that he battled with drug and alcohol addiction and depression and had just recently been in rehab before he took his own life. The astrologer Donna Cunningham whose lectures I have attended at a FAA  conference has researched extensively on the addictions in the birthchart and made the interesting observation that one of the genes for depression and one of the genes for alcoholism are next to each other on the same strand of DNA..  It was also revealed by Robin’s wife a few days after his death that he also had been diagnosed with early onset Parkinsons disease yet another challenge for him to contend with.

The whole tragic event pressed a lot of buttons for me as my own father was a Cancerian with 6 planets in Cancer and Jupiter conjunct Chiron in Pisces so altogether 8 planets in water signs if you count Chiron. My father also had Neptune conjunct the Sun, and had Pluto conjunct Mercury as did Robin Williams. He also suffered from depression, insomnia and alcoholism, dying an untimely death at age 57. Another dear friend, Neil was an Aries with Cancer rising also suffered with depression and alcoholism and died in his early 60s. He had a T-square with Neptune Moon and Saturn. A few years ago I gave a powerpoint presentation on Mental Illness in the Birthchart for our astrology association AANSW in Sydney. I was particularly inspired by the work of Kay Redfield Jamison, Professor of Psychiatry at the John Hopkins University School of Medicine and co-director of the John Hopkins Mood Disorders Centre. Her book Touched with Fire alludes to Icarus who flew too high and had his wings burned by the sun. She referred to the two lines in the poem, A Fine Madness by the Elizabethan poet Michael Drayton:
For that fine madness still he did retain
Which rightly should possess a poet’s brain.
Lord George Gordon Byron referred to the creative genius in this way “We of the craft are all crazy.”
There has been a long-held belief that there is a fine line between genius and madness. Robin Williams could be very manic in his behaviour experiencing the highs and lows as revealed in his countless interviews and portrayed in his many movie and TV roles. With Mercury the trickster his most elevated planet, he was like a chameleon able to shift shape in his many roles.

He had some challenging transits to deal with before he took his own life. Over the past year  transiting Uranus and Pluto have both been activating the challenging Mars complex in Williams’ chart, and when Mars was in Libra  it formed a Grand Cross with Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn.  Jupiter in Cancer, was also involved in that alignment and all of these planets were  affecting Williams’ natal Mars the co ruler of his Scorpio ascendant. Transiting Pluto was opposing his natal Mars Uranus conjunction in the 8th house of death and the transiting Sun had just passed over his natal Pluto. The Pluto opposition to Mars  would have been especially volatile and would have been overwhelming for someone so sensitive as Robin Williams.  Vale Robin Williams  – a genius who will be sadly missed by all who loved you and to whom you brought so much joy and laughter.

 

 

 

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