Frida Kahlo: Is There a Price to Pay for Genius? Astrology Musings

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Frida Kahlo is one of the most iconic and celebrated symbolic-realist artists of the 20th century, but her short life was painful and ultimately tragic, yet nevertheless full. Is there such a thing as a trade off between genius and pain?

Such was her fame that even during her lifetime, in 1942, one of her paintings sold for over $3 million at Sotheby’s.

When I first looked at her chart I noted that the three so-called outer planets (which are invisible to the naked eye and therefore not luminaries) are in key sensitive points.

I have long thought that Uranus, Neptune and Pluto and their supposed influences are something to be avoided, or overcome, even though they might put the individual in touch which certain deeper, darker and ultimately dangerous forces of our universe. Uranus may bring originality but can disrupt suddenly; Neptune may inspire but confuses and befuddles; and Pluto might provide intensity but undermines darkly.

At the age of 6 Frida contracted polio which left her with one leg shorter than the other. Later, through sports, she built up her body strength with characteristic resolve and went to one of Mexico‘s best schools.

A Life Changing Accident

Then fate intervened again when she was severely injured in a horrific road traffic accident in Mexico City in 1925. It was a life changing experience which she never truly overcame, but such was her intense lust for life and experience, she got through it, despite numerous operations, including a leg amputation later on.

During this early period following the accident, she began to paint and this was the beginning of her career which saw her later exhibiting as far a field as New York and Paris.

Due to the intense pain and the resulting depression she also developed a drinking habit but always lived life to its fullest.

‘The Heroine of Pain’ What Does the Astrology Say?

There is little wonder that in her native Mexico she is referred to as ‘the heroine of pain‘ – ‘la heroina del dolor’. She certainly seems to have had that air of greatness about her which only few achieve during their lifetime – but at what price?

She has Leo rising with Mercury in the 1st house. Here is the lust for life and creativity and to express it.

However, her ruler the Sun is immersed in the ocean of a 12th house Cancer conjunct Neptune, forming the most difficult and trying figure in the chart.

This subconsciously embedded conjunction is opposed by a practical Mars conjunct Uranus in the 6th house of health and efficiency. This activation of the 6th/12th house axis might well have been behind the motivation to seek a career in medicine in her early teens.

A Potential Career in Medicine

She would appear to have been as much interested in mental as well as physical health, especially so as an exalted Jupiter is also in the 12th house quite close to her north node; she might well have become a doctor of psychology or psychiatry if things had been different, yet other medical paths could have suited. But it wasn’t to be. Any aptitude toward practical medicine was firmly rebuked by fate, steering her toward creative art with a symbolic edge.

Whilst Neptune close to the Cancerian Sun might at best be inspirational, its major influence is to subconsciously confound and upset, affecting her psychologically. This may suggest the subconscious symbolism of her art. Sun Cancerians are family orientated but happiness in this area of her life was to prove elusive.

Opposing the Sun/Neptune conjunction, Mars/Uranus only antagonise and disrupt, the martian strength being exalted in Capricorn, yet is physically embattled and irritated by revolutionary Uranus. The exact opposition between the Sun and Mars illustrates the intense attraction to men she had but also the difficulty in maintaining steady relationships, even though she only married one man – twice.

This opposition of conjunctions effectively energises the whole chart, mimicking the explosive drama of her life.

A Ribbon Around a Bomb?

Psychologically Frida was deep, intensely emotional but had an exacting attitude too. Her Venus, ruler of the MC and 10th house of career, is closely conjuct the undermining influence of Pluto in the 11th house, challenged by Saturn from the 8th. This also reflects her intense relationships and friendships, her difficulty with them, as well as her interest in feminine identity. Venus Pluto and a Taurean MC suggest the intense realism and symbolism of her art.

Her Moon exalted in Taurus in the 10th house is also void of course in the last degree of the Bull. Whilst this might add a certain steadiness to her emotional responses, she might also have felt as if she was always fighting against time. Void of course Moons are difficult to assess in natal charts, but this is my take.

She was once described as being a ribbon around a bomb. Whether that is accurate or not, she was certainly one of the most naturally gifted, intensively creative female artists of any period. Iconic indeed.

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What the cards reveal: Centre card, consciously; left card: subconsciously; right card: manifesting.


Copyright Francis 2022

Moon Moves into Libra – Astrology Musings

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The Moon has just moved into the cardinal air sign of Libra, as of Friday August 21.

As the Moon has much to say about the general mood of our daily situation, expect the next couple of days to air more stories about justice, social issues and diplomatic moves. Let’s hope they’re more positive.

I was born with the Moon in Libra, which correlates to my greater than usual emotional need to feel ‘balance’ in my life, to be with people and be approved, though thanks to Saturn being in challenging aspect to this Moon, I have invariably felt somewhat out of place, out on a limb. This may be part of my karmic inheritance.

It’s something one has to accept, I guess, but even ‘the astrologer’ in me often finds it hard to self analyse.

***If you would like an astrological analysis, either for yourself, loved one or friend, please visit here.

Copyright Francis Barker 2020

Astrology – Our Nature In The Sky

silhouette of person standing on rock formation under starry sky
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The ancient art of astrology appears to be as old as human civilisation.

But from the 18th century with the beginning of The Enlightenment, there was a concerted effort among the so-called scientific community to discredit astrology (and other ancient holistic beliefs) as if it represented something outdated and superstitious, a hangover from the days when all cosmic models of the universe depicted a flat earth.

At various times the astrological community, if it can be called that, has also contributed to its own poor reputation. For example, to my mind in the present age the preponderance of Sun sign astrology has weakened and cheapened its standing. ‘I’m an Aquarian so I don’t get along with a Scorpio’ – this is often the kind of conversation you will hear.

So with the Enlightenment and its subsequent change of philosophy, which claimed to rely upon observation alone, scientists effectively became the new priests, a factor which we still see today when we read the news, especially where the word ‘scientists’, or ‘scientists say’ appears. This phraseology has become almost like a trigger to make us sit up and take note, like some new prognostication from a priest. If a scientist says so it must be true. In most cases this may well be true, but we also need to do our own research, rely and trust our own discernment.

Decrying the Sacred

And whilst scientists began to look intently out into ‘the heavens’ with an increasing disregard for its sublimity in regard to God, they also too decried the idea that the Sun, Moon and planets could have any significant psychological and spiritual effect upon us, either in a real, or symbolic fashion. The sky ceased to be sacred and the whole of creation gradually turned into the result of one big ‘happy accident’, beginning roughly 14 billion years ago.

Until around ten years ago, I would have generally concurred with the general scientific explanation for our existence. I do not anymore. Increasingly, I have come to realise that we do indeed live in a sacred space, where nature is the outward expression of the creator, otherwise called the Mind of God. As to the actual nature and age of the ‘universe’ I am not at all sure anymore. However, I do know that astrology works when applied correctly.

As Above, So Below

We need to get a true understanding of what astrology is and how it works. I believe the earth and all things within it do indeed resonate with the stars, the movements of the planets. Each represents a function within us, and depending on sign, house and aspect, describes how we work, what we may well have brought with us into this life, either by inheritance or perhaps from former lives.

Suddenly, astrology and the birth chart assumed a much more sacred significance for me. Everyone was the centre of their own universe, truly important and here for a specific reason. We are not irrelevant because we are told we inhabit this ordinary planet, in an ordinary solar system, on the outer limb of an ordinary galaxy, which, along with many others, is hurtling through a vacuum at an incredible speed as a result of the biggest explosion ever.

The Universe Within Us

In the final analysis, whatever the nature of reality and our universe, all of us can only experience life through our own senses. It was Christ after all who said:

“The kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:21)

We cannot take for granted that any other individual sees life in the same way. By that token, then the individual birth chart truly assumes a sacred importance: with accurate interpretation it can cast light upon who we are, why we are here – and perhaps, where we are going. With that in mind, every individual birth chart is a new challenge to explore. The greatest minority of all is the individual but together, in true understanding of our life’s purpose, we become a new transcendent whole.

copyright Francis Barker 2020

***If you would like your own birth chart interpreting, or perhaps that of a loved one, please feel free to contact me at: francisbarkerart@gmail.com

Johannes Brahms born this day 1833 – What do the ‘stars’ say?

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johannes_Brahms

With Tchaikovsky also born on this day in 1840, this middle period of Taurus is evidently fertile ground for great musicians and composers.

Born in Hamburg in northern Germany, many aspects of his life and personality are reflected in his birth chart. He is said to have been both an innovator and a traditionalist. I believe we can see the latter in his Sun in Taurus, which though artistic (ruled by Venus), favours the more conventional elements of art and music. His Capricorn Midheaven and Saturn in Virgo, trine his Sun in Taurus in the 6th house, strongly hints at a highly structured, methodical approach to work and career. The latter too probably accounts for his meticulousness and perfectionism which are often referred to. He famously destroyed some of his work, or at least left it unpublished.

However, where might his so called innovative and romantic side stem from? Well, he has Aries rising, which likes to plough new furrows and which traditionally means the ruler of the chart is Mars, which finds itself in emotional, romantic Cancer – which also, incidentally, is conjunct the north node of the Moon in the 4th house: I think he clearly followed the path he was supposed to take.

Even more though, he has a tight Mercury Jupiter conjunction in Aries conjunct the ascendant, sextile Uranus in Aquarius and trine a wide ranging Moon in Sagittarius. Here is the precocious, talented child, a bundle of creative energy and, probably, a very ‘difficult’ child too. Here is great manual dexterity, innovation, flare and sheer raw talent rolled into one. Some might call it genius. Venus in Gemini trine Neptune also evokes an easy romanticism and someone truly inspired at times.

So little wonder then that Johannes Brahms is considered one of the all time greats, to rank alongside Beethoven and Bach.

source: http://www.astro.com