In the News / Celebrity Astrology
Salman Rushdie - July 08
19 June 1947 2.30 am Bombay, India
Salman Rushdie is tipped to win the Booker Prize this year having already won the best of Booker for his Midnight''s Children (1981 winner) earlier this month. The death fatwa against him in 1989 by Ayatollah Khomeini for his book Satanic Verses brought home to the general Western public the impact of the rise of fundamentalist Islam which was to have such a pervasive effect over the next two decades.
Rushdie is a New Moon in Gemini conjunct Uranus so is a communicator and emotionally detached (Gemini), focussed (New Moon), a rebel, keen to step outside the conventional mould (Uranus). He''s also over-confident from a Mars in Taurus opposition Jupiter in Scorpio especially where money and personal relationships are concerned. He likes to look as if he is fighting holy wars but in fact he''s quite self serving. His early career was in advertising. Mars in Taurus likes the better things of life as does Jupiter in Scorpio, plus his Gemini planets are in the 2nd so money has always been quite a driving force. Mars and Jupiter square onto Pluto in the 4th (conjunct Saturn) so with such an emphasised and fixed Pluto he is stubborn almost obsessively so, has tremendous staying power and allows nothing to interfere with what he is aiming towards especially emotionally and in his home life. He''s been married four times. Saturn and Pluto in the 4th suggest a bleak childhood. Though it is softened slightly by also being on the point of a mini grand trine to a romantic and artistic Venus in Gemini trine Neptune - so he used his emotional difficulties as the fuel for his creative writing.
He published Satanic Verses in September 1988 when the transitting hugely disruptive Saturn Uranus conjunction in Sagittarius was opposing his New Moon. This book and the fatwa which followed on Feb 14 1989 was to prove such a catastrophic turning point in his life that it caused him to go into hiding and be heavily guarded for years after. Transitting Pluto in early Scorpio was also just starting to pick up his very entrenched fixed T square (Mars opp Jup squ Pluto). Since this T square includes a risky and ruthless Mars Pluto square, the events which transpired fitted his astrology perfectly. It took Pluto until the mid 1990s to clear his T square though Pluto then headed for his 8th house for a decade plus which is still very trapped. It only cleared this year. The fatwa still stays in place though he says he regards it more as rhetoric than real.
What is really interesting astrologically is that his 9th Harmonic, which is the chart of what one makes of life, has a hugely hostile and dangerous 9H Mars Pluto in Cancer in the 7th, suggesting he would attract hatred through life. It is also conjunct the 9H MC, opposes Mercury and squares Uranus in Aries so there''s more than a hint that his life would be one of great controversy (Mer Mars Pl Ur), turmoil, high risk, at the centre of revolutions with inflammatory language a constant factor. In 1988/89 when the Satanic Verses fatwa was issued and the immediate aftermath the transitting triple conjunction of Neptune, Saturn, Uranus in Capricorn was just across the 9H Ascendant suggesting a time of massive changes in his public image, and more pointedly opposing that 9H Mars Pluto which is an influence suggesting panic, fear, confusion. Transitting Pluto was also trine the 9H Mars Pluto, another indication of risk and frustration. In many ways the transits to the 9H chart are as indicative as to the natal chart. The transitting triple conjunction went on to conjunct 9H Merc, oppose the MC and square Uranus in the years thereafter so the upheavals continued.
Rushdie''s 5th Harmonic which shows his creative, craftsman skills and his power in life, had transitting Pluto on the 5H 3rd house Neptune then suggesting disorientation especially in his everyday routines and communications; plus transitting triple conjunction was just moving into the 5H fifth house of creativity and social life conjuncting the 5H Saturn in early Capricorn - so there would be a sense of social isolation, tremendous pressure, depression and chaotic conditions.
His key midpoints show up a good many squares and semi squares (45 degrees) of Sun and Moon to Pluto and to Jupiter/Saturn suggesting violent changes, separations, restrictions (Pl = Jup/Sat) and relationship changes (Sun Moon squ Jup/Sat). His Moon''s NNode is semi square Uranus/Pluto which fits him firmly at the centre of the zeitgeist in revolutionary energies; NNode is also semi square Sun/Saturn, Moon/Saturn so a life of seclusion, restrictions and emotionally unhappiness. His Mars is semi square Uranus/MC which again hints of premature action, violence, quarrelsome. Mars also is semi square Pluto/Node which brings the misfortune to be placed in someone else''s power with hints of violence and brutality. Not surprisingly his 4th Harmonic is strong which is the chart indicating how difficulties are coped with. There is a close 4H New Moon opposition Pluto squaring onto a Mercury Venus opposition - a Mutable Grand Square with Mercury conjunct MC - the emphasised mutable Pluto does suggest a malcontent or a radical thinker whose opinions have a deep and unsettling impact on society. Tied into 4H Mercury, Venus and the New Moon also suggests a creative life focussed towards communication. In 1988 the transitting Uranus Saturn conjunction was opposing the 4H MC describing a tremendous upheaval in lifestyle and change of direction.
One of the problems with Harmonics - with so many potential charts - is information overload but it''s useful to see with major public figures how they play out.
On his natal chart he does have transitting Jupiter heading for his midheaven later this year giving him a successful year thereafter with a rise in status and reputation.
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