MARIANNE FAITHFULL: WALKER ON WAYS LESS TRAVELLED
The life story and various narcotic, psychic and near death experiences of rock chic, Marianne Faithfull, are so unusual they justify clichés like “fact more remarkable than fiction”. Faithfull (1994) and Memories, Dreams and Reflections (2007)are autobiographical sources but they raise many questions so I’ve always wanted to know the singer’s true horoscope to have other perspectives. Which I feel I finally now have.
As regards Marianne’s experiences and stellar signatures for especially anything “Chez Satanic” (title of a chapter in Faithfull) there’s a real connection with issues I intended to write about this month re John Lennon but will now lead up to instead via Marianne. I feel almost obliged to examine the new and occult Lennon controversy given my Blogs of April and May ‘07, a version of which got published as "Imagine There’s No Heaven" in Investigate Magazine for April ‘08 in New Zealand. (The article was refused for a couple of suitable UK outlets as likely to cause public outcry while a trendy religious periodical said I was being “too esoteric” dealing with the afterlife!). But first to the intriguing Marianne.
Someone who unearthed an old magazine article of mine recently wrote complimenting me on my rectification skills (finding and testing true birth times) especially in finding the most convincing working chart for Shakespeare. But the elusive Marianne has always eluded me and I’d given up trying only to discover recently an accepted time is supposed to be 12.30 pm in London (Dec 29,1946) giving 3 degrees Taurus rising and placing the singer’s Capricorn sun in the 9th house. This pattern seems right and if it isn’t, I’ll eat my hat because factors now emerge like a telling accuracy with asteroids which I could never obtain before but felt I might need in order to describe and explain elements of Marianne’s story sufficiently. But what accuracy! The sheer fatedness is striking.
PRELIMINARY OBSERVATIONS: RELATIONSHIP AND SUICIDAL POTENTIAL
To encourage reader confidence in details like asteroids I’ll first mention two telling features for Marianne’s pattern independent of any birth time accuracy.
Uranus, planet of the shocking, unusual, brilliant, eccentric and often gay, is same degree conjunct Fama (fame) in communicating Gemini. So Marianne will always deliver shocks and surprises; she’ll not just sing but speak out, be heard and celebrated for notoriety, not least in relation to ultra radical gay men (Uranus) like Alan Ginsburg for whom she taught at the Naropa Institute, film director, Kenneth Anger for whom she acted, and writer William Burroughs whose example gave her the bizarre ambition to become a street junkie. (If the birth time is correct this shock effect is primarily and suitably conveyed through Marianne’s personal values sector).
But we know Marianne will also be famous for being involved with the very hetero Rolling Stones. Amazingly, Mars in Marianne Faithful’s chart, (the men in her life, the kind of man or men she wants) is degree exact conjunct asteroid, Rolling Stones!
If the birth time is correct, that Marianne will always be before the public and known as just herself is aided by the fact that asteroid, Marianna, loosely conjuncts her destiny/career/reputation Midheaven (MC) point from within her career house too. (MC 13 Cap.32,Marianna, 17Cap41 - note asteroids, traditionally deemed feminine, used to be named even for men with a feminine “a” on the end)
Reverting to the Rolling Stones, assuming again that 12.30 pm is correct, Mars rules Marianne’s Scorpio dominated partnerships/marriage sector. Marianne and Rolling Stone, Mick Jagger, (Marianne was also wildly attracted to band member, Keith Richard) could have married or at least had a child together but Marianne lost the child after several months. The event plunged her into the depression which triggered the drug addiction which helped separate her from Jagger. The pain and passion in relations(s) is reflected in the wounded Chiron in Scorpio conjuncting the unions angle while the often misleading romanticism directed by Marianne on relationships is signaled by asteroid, Fantasia also conjunct here. Even so, the basic wealth, generosity and luck attending Marianne’s partnerships (Jagger even bought Marianne’s mother a house) despite any pain involved is nonetheless described by the conventionally super fortunate Jupiter/Venus conjunction falling in the partnerships sector.
Marianne Faithfull is more than usually the proverbial “cat with nine lives “ and Jupiter/Venus is arguably one of its secrets to the extent this conjunction is notoriously fortunate wherever found. But in Marianne’s unions sector it suggests others will likely come to her aid, including to rescue her from death (Scorpio) - as has happened on several occasions! Jagger saved her just in time from her Sydney suicide attempt with an overdose of Tuinals.
Of course, the Venus/Jupiter in sexy if death ridden Scorpio is also a key to Marianne’s Faithfull’s one time sexy pin-up status and legendary self indulgence (which arguably includes a virtual love affair with death itself!) Another clue to the singer’s psychology, especially the celebrated addictive and bisexual tendencies, is the afflicted Neptune (it afflicts both Sun and Mars), a signature almost invariably found in bisexuality so far as I can tell, and reinforced by a no boundaries and “lost”, if mystical and musical, Piscean moon in the lost, unconscious twelfth sector.
However……all this collection of relevance which I merely make in the course of bolstering my point about asteroid accuracy is almost trivial against what asking certain ethical and spiritual questions led me to discover.
MARIANNE FAITHFUL: FROM ARTIST’S LICENCE TO DANCES WITH THE DEVIL
Marianne Faithfull likes artists and has always aspired to be one herself but has taken to utmost extreme the licence European culture and its aristocracies, have traditionally accorded artists to avoid the norms and conventional morals. In Marianne’s case this tendency is perhaps helped by the fact her Austrian great grand uncle was Baron Sacher-Mosach (from whence the supposed joys of masochism). No matter how personally simpatico and/or vaguely pathetic one finds Marianne one may still grow tired of hearing, for example, that some drug pusher, addict and recreational thief like Henrietta Moraes who in her last years, Marianne says, kept manifesting a demon, or Alan Ginsburg who wanted Marianne to have sex with her pupils at Naropa (she didn’t) and apparently wanted and believed in sex with kids, or some mother who apparently left her “carelessly neglected” kids disturbed (one dying a junkie) like wealthy aristocratic writer descended from a line of witches, Caroline Blackwood, were just the most marvelous endearing persons you could ever hope to meet. “I loved the glee with which she viewed folly, wickedness and perversity” writes Marianne of Caroline to whom she felt she owed “fealty” though “she was clearly an instrument of the sacred god of chaos”.
In the same spirit we now and again hear in press interviews things like the devil is the most fun person at any party (Marianne has on occasions acted the part of the devil for stage). Though I’m stressing asteroids it’s not irrelevant that as regards planetary symbolism Marianne as a Capricorn. It's a sign “ruled” by the Saturn traditionally associated with, work, guilt, limits, exact requital, and by medieval astrologers the devil. Under this sign there tends to be more disposition to be casual about, even feel affinity for Satan - Marilyn Manson is the rock world’s extreme example. (The other relevant sign is Libra, the sign in which Saturn/Satan is said to be “exalted”. This was the sign both of arch Satanist, Aleister Crowley and his admirer, John Lennon of whom presently).
So….it’s time to ask the question, if, despite protestations in Memories,, she’s not the witch or Satanist many imagine but merely a humanist with an individual spiritual track, is Marianne nonetheless a bit more responsible for influencing modern belief than she realizes and more of the devil’s party than she understands?
The placement of Marianne Faithfull’s Capricorn sun in her ninth sector, apart from covering for her foreign connections, links her to all and any issues of belief. So did Marianne help, however unintentionally, to birth modern Satanism when she encouraged Jagger towards reading The Master and the Margarita which prompted him to compose Sympathy for the Devil, or again when she took the part of devil’s bride Lilith, in Kenneth Anger’s film Lucifer Rising ? She admits the latter decision was folly and regrets it, but chiefly because Anger terrified her by subsequently cursing her. As an old proverb goes “it takes a long spoon to sup with the devil”. Marianne, who thinks the devil is a fun person, seems often to have been closer to dancing with him than just supping with a long spoon at table.
MARIANNE FAITHFUL’S ASTROLOGY OF THE DARK SIDE
Or so one may be inclined to think if we pursue Marianne’s astrology which is rather devastating in the area of beliefs with the dark side seemingly inscribed in her life pattern quite notably.
There are two devil asteroids, Lucifer, which can be considered the devil as light (Lucifer, light bearer), and Malin (French for devil) that is more like the devil as darkness. Malin conjuncts Marianne’s Midheaven, destiny/career point from within the career house within two degrees. The way in which the devil in Marianne’s career was originally involved with a reading of Bulgakov’s novel, The Master and the Margarita appears signaled by within the same career/reputation house a striking and unexpected same degree conjunction of Malin with asteroid, Margarita! Then, although not similarly aspected, the fact that asteroid, Lilith, (in Jewish mythology, Satan’s wife) also falls in Marianne’s career/reputation sector is suggestive of more “chez Satanic” tales, like her Lilith role in a Satanist’s film.
There is however another more vivid astrological Lilith, a point in the heavens called Black Moon Lilith. It’s much used by continental astrologers and never felt to represent anything good. Interestingly, this point is found in Marianne’s chart (at whatever the time of birth) at 26 Sagittarius which means it conjuncts the Galactic Centre which has a vital association with events in religion. If the birth time is exact, then this point additionally falls exactly conjunct Marianne Faithfull’s ninth house cusp of religion and philosophy which is to say she risks representing or channelling a Black Moon Lilith philosophy which could include the quasi challenge of suicidal urges – BML is opposite her Part of Suicide.
Of course Marianne won’t realize who and what is pulling the destiny strings, if such is the case, because for her the devil should be light and amusing, perhaps even bringing some good despite himself – like the Satan-Wolland figure in Bulgakov’s novel albeit the Master and the Margarita who have dealings with him won’t have salvation. One notes that Lucifer, placed - suitably for Marianne’s positive Satan images - in her chart in goody Virgo closely trines from there of all things asteroid, Rolling Stones. This betrays how there will be ample opportunity to influence Jagger with her interests. This aspected Rolling Stones falls besides in the philosophy/religion sector of Marianne’s chart signifying perhaps that Jagger could be almost Marianne’s philosophy or deity just in himself (one has the impression that that’s how things once were!) while she can in turn be his muse helping him to invent a bit of Satanic philosophy for public consumption even if (as is the case) he believes none of it personally.
Marianne’s mother, Eva, with whom Marianne had a love/hate relation and who respected Mick - with some reason as he gifted her a home! - tending to blame Marianne for any relationship problems with him, seems shown by the Eva asteroid. Eva’s relation with Jagger is indicated by the easy, potentially fortunate trine aspect to Rolling Stones. However, we learn that later in life the Catholic, half Jewish, Eva (Baroness Erisso) became “very religious” and when Marianne made her first suicide attempt which occurred in Sydney Eva arranged for nuns to be with her. So, on the basis conjunctions are very pro or con something, that asteroids Lucifer and Eva are conjunct and in turn conjunct the Christ asteroid, seems suggestive of the mother’s struggle for her daughter’s soul.
As if to certify that point, the struggle is in effect reinforced and duplicated by the way the Jesus asteroid suspiciously makes exact-to-the-degree conflict square to Malin/Devil. Not that if there’s any battle here it’s one that Lucifer is automatically fated to win – astrology is more about tendencies than pure fate and the Part of Success (given correct birth time) conjuncts Christ more than Lucifer.
One can’t know, especially from astrology alone, exactly where Marianne might stand with the Creator God she says nowadays she doesn’t believe in unless it’s a case of believing (as she puts it) that we’re all chips off some great Cosmic Rock. But it’s interesting that Marianne’s Sun is challengingly opposite asteroid, Bhagwat, Hinduism’s name for Lord (God) or personal deity, an asteroid which I believe works to symbolize especially God as Creator. Note this Bhagwat falls in the sign of the mothers, Cancer, so I imagine, especially as Marianne read Robert Graves’ The White Goddess at her mother’s death, any god desired or believed in by Marianne would tend to be the Goddess, who might then morph into just Lilith! It looks like Marianne has long courted and been considerably influenced by forces that make her second autobiography’s claim to be only a humanist not very convincing. But now for the big dark side question...
DID JOHN LENNON PACT WITH THE DEVIL?
The kind of apparently relevant occult data seen in Marianne Faithfull’s natus leads naturally to the question to what extent individuals can and do enter into relations with the dark side. It seems more likely that un-summoned the devil and spirits of whatever kind appear - I can’t recall the relevant line from Jung or Holderlin about this - rather than because anyone actually invokes or pacts with them. Attitudes and behaviour alone, and some might add family inheritance (Marianne admits to at least a family inheritance in terms of feelings for decadence) can amount to an invitation to spirit presence and the influence can be unconscious. This might explain a few dark corners of Marianne’s story. Obviously, though, some people historically have invoked and today still do invoke entities.
By contrast to the story of Marianne’s haphazard occult involvements there’s a new book out called The Lennon Prophecy which at time of writing I’ve ordered but haven’t yet read but whose central, already much contested claim, can likewise be subjected to a measure of astrological analysis and even without my reading all the details first.
Joseph Niezagoda proposes John Lennon made a twenty year pact with the devil for fame and fortune – he supposedly told a friend, Tony Sheridan, he had sold his soul. The book has been called gripping but, say critics, only as commercial fiction or bestselling conspiracy theory. I can’t help feeling that if the book’s advocates are to be called superstitious sensationalists (as is happening) their critics might need to be called the Lennon Angel party, people for whom their idol couldn’t be wrong and so be other than now in heaven’s front row (as I’ve seen suggested) merely because he said, very Libran style, “Give Peace a Chance” and “All you need is love”. One wonders did they never hear of Lucifer as light or being a deceiver? Obviously they aren’t aware of the conflicted quality of Lennon’s pattern which reveals, for example his Part of Honour conjunct his Part of Corruption, albeit I’m never so confident of evidence from Arabic Parts on a horoscope as compared to asteroids. However Lennon’s very close conjunction of truthful Jupiter with (at best) pragmatic Saturn, tells the same story. People with this conjunction under any sign – many of us believe Jesus was born under such – seem more than usually involved with moral choices and could be notably good or evil.
Whatever the truth, critics should at least know that the Yellow Submarine album cover of 1967 presented arch Satanist, Aleister Crowley, as one of the “people we like”. And early in the Beatles’ career it’s biographically established Lennon had associations with bohemians in Germany dabbling in the dark side. Nizagoda, a devoted Beatles fan, isn’t trying to make notably religious points. He is puzzled and conflicted about the evidence he claims regretfully to have unearthed over years but evidence which he feels alone makes sense of certain events, lyrics and statements.
JOHN LENNON’S SINISTER LIFE AND DEATH SKIES
Let’s suspend disbelief for a moment. Whatever the facts this much makes a pact theory plausible - astrologically. The Pact was supposedly made in second half December 1960 shortly before the Beatles’ meteoric rise to fame began. Although by transit Jupiter was coming to contact Lennon’s career Midheaven which would be helpful for propelling an ambitious person into the spotlight there is the paradox from any conventional astrological standpoint that the previous lunar eclipse fell within Lennon’s undermining twelfth house (hidden enemies) while the previous solar eclipse had conjuncted his co-ruler of the same sector, the dreamy, otherworldly Neptune. So, in late ‘60 Lennon might not have been seeing things too clearly (perhaps in a drugs haze?) and courting the fantastic and harmful. It was nevertheless still a dynamic time for him in which transiting Uranus was making tension/conflict square to his natal Uranus all month. So he might well do something a bit off-beat Uranian crazy then. But what? It happens that the transiting Uranus was near enough conjunct (under two degrees) his natal Malin (devil as darkness).
That Lennon might easily contact, even savour and favour the dark side and hell in its way - he said he loved the dreams that took him to worlds like those of the painter, Hieronymus Bosch - is indicated by a natal pattern that shows Lennon’s career relevant, close Jupiter/Saturn conjunction in earthy Taurus, making easy, opportunity giving, degree exact trine to hell asteroid, Hella (remember the “a” principle for asteroids I mentioned).
There’s no asteroid for Pact but it’s my considered opinion that asteroid, Constantia, stands for anything firm, lasting and Covenant-like. It could, then, be relevant that Constantia conjuncts Lennon’s sun at birth suggesting a covenant might define his life in some fashion; especially so as in Dec ‘60 Constantia was in (underworld associated) Scorpio, sign of Lennon’s Mercury, the planet/symbol involved in any agreements or contracts. And then, at Lennon’s death we do find Constantia conjunct death planet Pluto.
If that is suggestive of covenanted death dues then in line with that idea it may be relevant, and it’s suggestive, that at the time of Lennon’s shooting on 8th Dec 1980 Hella was at 25 degrees Leo. This means it was in direct so to speak completing aspect to that same Uranus square to natal Uranus pattern at 25 Taurus prevailing throughout December 1960 when Niezagoda theorizes the pact was made and then square the opposition of Uranus to Lennon’s natal Uranus at the time of death. There’s something else sinister around Uranus mentioned presently.
In the actual Event Chart for the shooting at 10.50 pm Dec 8th 1980 in New York, asteroid Hella was in the unconscious, underworld, place of loss as was suitably enough also asteroid Yoko. Asteroid Lennon was all of
a) conjunct the event defining moon of the moment (which last was also conjunct Chapman’s natal moon)
b) also directly aspecting the ascendant, signifying the event itself and its place in the world which would certainly hear about Lennon
c) conjuncting Lennon’s natal Midheaven, his destiny.
It is most interesting if plain sinister that asteroid, Chapman, was rising in the New York event chart in degree exact fortunate trine to aggressive Mars reflecting how easy the murder would be – almost given to Chapman who apparently believed he was about Satan’s business in the matter. After all, Lennon should have waited for his car to be taken round to the Dakota building’s security entrance at the back, not have exited on the street before the front entrance! Purists might demand that Malin(Devil) should be rising or even conjunct the event’s ascendant. I note however that it was within conjunction of the South Nodes at the time – generally regarded as involving matters from one’s past that need to be dealt with.
Re Chapman….Incredibly, asteroids Lennon and Hella are closely conjunct in his natus (18 Cap 18 and 18 Cap 35 respectively) and they link to his natal sun at 19 Taurus by favourable trine which bespeaks the love/hate relation to Lennon that biography records and that would be helpful to contacting Lennon and which surely made the murder all said and done a choice. Yet the hand of fate was still there somehow…..Lucifer at 26 Taurus in Chapman’s birth was conjunct Lennon’s 25 Taurus Uranus, and we have seen that transiting Uranus to Uranus is very much the trigger in this whole story. I have never mentioned the position of Lucifer as opposed to Malin in Lennon’s birth. It was 0 Cancer, which astrologers deem a world point. If it weren’t there arguably it would be less likely there would be widespread speculation upon just what the relation of Lennon to the forces of evil may have been.
FINALLY….DOES THE LENNON PACT MAKE SENSE OF A HELL VISION?
Even all these signs can still be dismissed as coincidence. But if there had been some mad Faustian bargain shadowing Lennon’s life it helps makes more sense of that most difficult of hell visions my Blog and magazine article (see above) tried to make sense of.
I wouldn’t wish to treat as holy writ the alleged vision of the seven Colombians who visited heaven and hell with Jesus in April ‘95 and supposedly encountered Lennon in hell. I always stated my doubts about probably culture contaminated elements in report of that vision. Memory can distort. Yet nothing can quite get round the pattern in the heavens at the time the vision was claimed. How could factors like the celestial signs at the time that the group either wouldn’t know or else not approve under American Protestant influence, such as asteroids Lennon and Christ in conjunction, reflect the events described? Anyway, it was claimed Lennon called out to Jesus as the screaming, terrified Colombians passed through hell and then cursed him because Jesus would not respond as he did to others in perdition. If this vision has any validity why would Christ not respond? Because Lennon was in some wise a special offender – which if he had been pacted with the devil and vowed to various blasphemies he would undeniably be?
Let’s suppose all the astrology here is misleading and the Colombians got things wrong too. When I had read the criticisms of Nizagoda’s book I read this from the Blog he established for his book. Again, like the vision of the Colombians, I can’t quite get round it.
Apparently the last song Lennon was recording was one asking the Lord to help him. In the background he utters strange words apparently accepting how things had to be. There does seem to be something genuinely sinister here, a bit like a Marlowe’s Faustus trying to call on God (with regret but not in any real repentance, simply wanting a way out) but getting the idea it’s probably too late. I cite Niezgoda:
"...Like many of those who enter into a pact with the Devil they are aware of their allotted time, and as the time of the pact draws to a close, they begin to feel remorse, and start looking for a way out of their fatal pact. In this final song we hear John pleading with the Lord, “I’m asking this question in the hope that you’ll be kind, please help me Lord, help me to help myself.” In the song John uses the old adage ‘the Lord helps those who help themselves’. Was he hoping for a way out of his pact?
Eerily, if you listen closely, in the final moments of the song John can be heard talking to himself in a faint voice, saying, “I see, that’s how you’re going to do it, Huh, ok.” What could John possibly be talking about, “That’s how you’re going to do it,” DO WHAT?
If anyone has another interpretation, we’d be interested to hear what you have to say!“
I hope there could be other interpretations but I may instead be forced to take the author’s point…..You can call all this superstitious – I know the pact theory is being dismissed as crazy. I’m not prepared to say that it automatically is so. Like Marianne, but for different reasons in different ways, I know the dark side exists - I have had my own encounters with it. I discuss this in my new book, Cosmic Father; Spirituality as Relationship (Some details in my last Blog). Especially in the book's third chapter called, Suffering, A Secret Hidden Doctrine and Hell Itself, as in the 07 Blog articles on Lennon I try to make sense of the whole idea of hell and the demonic. They are subjects which sound unreal until you really look into the matter with an open mind.