I have chosen to look at the life and chart of Sir Patrick Moore, a very famous British Astronomer in the Public Media. His birth information is rated C, and he died only a few days ago on December 9, 2012 at age 89. According to astrodatabank he relegated astrology to “a load of rubbish” and Wikipedia quoted him as saying Astrology proves one thing, “There is one born every minute!” [Quotes are from Wikipedia, as of December 12, 2013.]
The technique that I have chosen to experiment with is the one put forth in ‘A Summary of Willner’s Book The Perfect Horoscope: Following the Astrological Guidelines Established by Edgar Cayce.’ Carol A Tebbs, who wrote the review of Willner’s book, states,
on the back of the book presumably written by Willner himself we find: The majority of horoscopes in current use are terribly wrong. Why? Because spiritual birth times, which are essential to producing an accurate horoscope according to Edgar Cayce, occur up to four-and-a- half hours before physical birth…. Compared with most of today’s faulty horoscopes, these ‘perfect horoscopes’ match personas with awesome precision and provide greatly enhanced forecasting capabilities.”
In the Summary of the article, Tebbs includes Willner’s “Proposed Standard for Testing Natal Horoscopes in the Tropical System”:
- The personality and physical appearance of the person will mirror the sign on the Ascendant in behavior and body features.
- All planets should be checked that they correctly reflect their [Placidus] house position, especially those planets near a cusp. One house or the other will predominate- the astrologer must determine which.
- Appropriate day-for-a-year Naibod progressed aspects in either longitude or declination should coincide with every important life event with 00;-4’ of accuracy. A minimum of three events should be tested, but more are desirable, and many of the events should be accompanied by aspects involving the Angles- natal or progressed, Ascendant or Midheaven.
- If in using the Placidus system intercepted houses are present, the intercepted pair of houses will match the vocation or a strong avocation or at least their activities a strong tendency.
- If planets are conjunct or parallel the Ascendant, Midheaven, Descendant or Imum Coeli, extraordinary or recognizable traits will be evident according to the symbolism of the planet and the sign.
- The overall horoscope shall fit the person exactly, without any doubts or exceptions.
I will use these guidelines to experimentally check the C rated birth time on Sir Patrick Moore’s Natal Chart from Astro Data Bank using some of the more predominant life events listed in Wikipedia and in Astrodata bank.
Step 1 “The personality and physical appearance of the person will mirror the sign on the Ascendant in behavior and body features.”
I find it counter-intuitive to start here without at least checking some of the major events of the life through solar arc because if the birth time is off (and it is only rated C) then the Ascendant could be wrong and to try to fit the appearance and personality to the Zodiac sign seems like quite a subjective place to start. So I did not start with Willner's first step. Instead I first used Solar Arc to check various events.
(click on chart at left to enlarge in new window)
Sir Patrick Moore just passed away 12/09/12 – His Sun and Uranus are conjunct by 1 degree in his natal chart. His Uranus is 13 degrees Pisces 30 minutes and his Ascendant is 13 degrees Pisces 32 minutes. This means his Uranus/Sun conjunction by Solar Arc would hit his Gemini Ascendant at 13 degrees 32 minutes just prior to his 90th Birthday. He would have been 90 this March (March 4 2012). Uranus is an appropriate indication of a sudden event, the Sun represents the life force and the Ascendant is the way one interacts with the physical world. Uranus conjunct the Sun colliding with the Ascendant would be an appropriate indicator for a sudden change happening to the way this life force interacts with the physical world( death). This is one sign to me that the Ascendant is correct (and thus the birth time is correct).
I look for other confirmations with the angles and major deaths in Sir Patrick Moore’s life…
His Father’s Death
Sir Patrick Moore’s Father died in 1947 when he was 24 years old. Sir Patrick Moore’s Ascendant at 13 degrees Gemini 32 minutes hits Pluto at 9 degrees Cancer 9 minutes in his Placidus second house at age 24. Pluto often represents death and the sign of Cancer is representative of the nurturing energies of the parent. The Ascendant meeting the death (Pluto) of a parent (Cancer) is another appropriate sign to me that the time on this chart is correct.
His Mother’s Death
Sir Patrick Moore’s biography on Wikipedia states that he was ‘exceptionally close to his mother’ who died in 1981 when Sir Patrick Moore was 58 years old. I look for a sign of this by Solar Arc in the Natal chart. I find confirmation of an event involving the moon (which would also be altered by the time of birth on the natal chart.) By Solar Arc the Moon at 00 degrees Libra 37 minutes hits Jupiter in Scorpio at 18 degrees 56 minutes when Sir Patrick Moore is 58 years old. The Moon is representative of the Mother and Jupiter (the planet of expansion) is in the sign of Scorpio ruled by Pluto (the planet of death and destruction). Jupiter is an expansive energy. Here that expansive energy is in a sign associated with death and when Sir Patrick Moore’s Moon (the sign of the Mother) collided with Jupiter it was also symbolic of his Mother’s death. I am convinced that this time could be (and probably is) correct.
Now I feel comfortable to go on and look at the Ascendant and the personality and appearance of Sir Patrick Moore to see if they match…
Café Astrology describes the Gemini Rising personality as:
“Gemini Ascendant exude an air of impatience even if they don't mean it. In fact, there is a cleverness to Gemini Ascendants that can intimidate some, especially sensitive folk. Their facility with words can be a wonderful asset, although sometimes Gemini rising individuals identify too much with their mental agility and forget, in their personal interactions and communications, to nurture the people around them. A certain lack of warmth in presentation can be the result, and although this style is generally a facade, it is not immediately apparent to most."
After reading through Patrick Moore’s biography on Wikipedia and Astrodatabank I am convinced that his personality matches that of a Gemini, and kind of a bratty Gemini at that! Wikipedia describes Sir Patrick Moore as:
‘the former president of the British Astronomical Association, co-founder and former president of the Society for Popular Astronomy, author of over 70 books on astronomy and presenter of the world’s longest-running television series with the same original presenter, The Sky at Night on the BBC. As an amateur astronomer, be became known as a specialist on observing the Moon and creating the Caldwell catalogue. Idiosyncrasies such as his rapid diction and monocle made him a popular and instantly recognizable figure on British television’
This description in itself matches that of the brainy, chatty cerebral fact finding Gemini.
However to further to substantiate what Café Astrology alludes to above with the ‘cleverness’ and lack of tact (and in his case political correctness) I have noted the following statements made by Sir Patrick Moore also listed in Wikipedia (as of December 12, 2012):
- Reporters often asked him questions such as “Why waste money on space research when there is so much to be done here?”; he later said then when asked these type of questions “I know that I’m dealing with an idiot.”
- Another question that annoyed him was “what is the difference between astronomy and astrology?”
- ‘He proudly declared himself to be English (rather than British) with “not the slightest wish to integrate with anybody”.
- He wrote that “homosexuals are mainly responsible for the spreading of AIDS (the Garden of Eden is home of Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve)”
- In an interview with Radio Times, he provocatively asserted that the BBC was being “ruined by women”, commenting that; “The trouble is that the BBC now is run by women and it shows; soap operas, cooking, kitchen-sink plays. You wouldn’t have had that in the golden days.”
- Moore responded to those who criticized his Euro-sceptic and right-wing beliefs by saying, “I may be accused of being a dinosaur, but I would remind you that dinosaurs ruled the Earth for a very long time”
- In 1976 for an April Fool’s spoof on BBC Radio 2, Moore announced that at 9:47 am, a once-in-a-lifetime astronomical event was going to occur that meant that if listeners could jump at the exact moment of an imminent celestial event they would experience a temporary floating sensation. The BBC received many telephone calls from listeners alleging that they actually experienced the sensation.
- Moore once joined the Flat Earth Society as an ironic joke.
- Finally, Astrodatabank quotes Sir Patrick Moore as saying that Astrology proves one thing; ‘There is one born every minute’.
After reading these statements made by Sir Patrick Alfred Moore I am convinced that Gemini Ascendant fits his personality. However I do not agree that it matches his appearance.
The Gemini rising description given at www.astrotheme.com is as follows, “Physically speaking, Gemini people have sparkling eyes and expressive mobile traits which are nice and well-defined. They are of slim build and of average to tall height with a supple, slender, and a nervous musculature. The limbs are often long like those of fashion models.” I have attached photos of Sir Patrick Alfred Moore, one more recent and one of when he was much younger.
Physically I think Sir Patrick Moore might better be described by his Sun sign which astrotheme.com describes as follows;
"Physically speaking, Pisces people are often plump and of average stature because they are a sign of absolute absence of differentiation. It is the only sign of the Zodiac which can take on many different appearances. The eyes are often large, attractive, quite fixed or slow, and almost hypnotic. The whole physique gives an impression which is somehow misty, mysterious, benevolent and quiet. Actually, Pisces' outward appearance is impossible to classify, similarly to their personality which remains completely elusive!”
Step 2. All planets should be checked that they correctly reflect their (Placidus) house position, especially those planets near a cusp. One house or the other will predominate - the astrologer must determine which.
I think it would be helpful if I had Willner’s book for this step but I will do my best without it with what I know of him.
Pluto is in the second house of ‘my home, my values, my belongings’ for Moore. Pluto represents destruction, transformation and rebirth and it is in the sign of Cancer (my needs/the mother/emotional nurturance). To me this means there will be a theme of destruction/death/rebirth especially in the emotional arena (because it is in the watery sign of Cancer) in the area of ‘my values, my belongings, my things’.
Lorna, Patrick’s fiancée was killed by a bomb which struck her ambulance in world war II. Moore subsequently sadly remarked that he never married because “there was no one else for me.. second best is no good for me … I would have liked a wife and family, but it was not to be.” Death and destruction occurred early on to what Patrick Moore valued most. His father also died when Patrick was only twenty-four. His mother then lived with him in his home till she died. In January of 1998, a tornado destroyed part of Moore’s garden observatory and also in 1998 Moore campaigned unsuccessfully against the closure of the Royal Observatory, in Greenwich. (I will be checking Moore’s progressed chart for the year 1998 to see if there are any interesting aspects to Pluto) I can accept Pluto (the planet of destruction) in the second house of ‘My Values’ and ‘My Valuables’ for all of these reasons.
Neptune is in the sign of Leo in the 4th house of family. Neptune represents the ideal. To me this means that in some ways Sir Patrick Moore held some illusions of the ideal family. As read in the above quote by Sir Patrick Moore when he lost his fiancé at a young age, “there was no one else for me ....”
Interestingly Neptune in Patrick Moore’s chart is parallel the asteroid Vesta which is in the detailed, hard, working earth sign of Virgo. Demetra and Bloch in their book entitled Asteroid Goddesses define Vesta as “Commitment to work; using work as a compensation; dedication to accomplishment or goals; emotional distancing; hard work and career demands; impersonal; sublimation of other interests into the career or vocation; sacrifice/denial of self by others self for a greater goal.” This speaks loudly to me of someone who replaced their desire for family with a dedication to their work.
I think this theme is reinforced by Mercury aptly placed in the 10th house (house of career) in the sign of Aquarius (which rules astronomy) opposing Neptune in the 4th. (Neptune and the fourth house are both in the creative sun sign of Leo). Moore was a very creative person but in his biography he also stated that he was “exceptionally close” to his mother, Gertrude, a talented artist who lived with him at his Selsey home, which is ‘still adorned with her paintings of “bogey”- little friendly aliens-which she regularly produced and which were sent out annually as Moore’s Christmas cards’. Again this reinforces the ideal notion with family (Moore being exceptionally close to his mother) and the creative/imaginative side of Leo and Neptune combining with the family in his mother who was an artist. I am convinced Neptune is in the right house.
The Moon is in the 5th house in Libra. The Moon represents one’s emotional self and need to feel right about oneself, Libra is a need to relate to others and create harmony and the fifth house is the house of creativity, pleasurable pursuits, games, children and the arts. Earlier it was noted that Moore said he would have liked children which fits with the moon here. Moore was also a keen amateur actor, appearing regularly in plays, a keen amateur chess player and cricketer. He was also featured on the 1990’s TV series GamesMaster. I think the moon fits appropriately here, because it seems Moore spent all of his time relating to others in one way or another- that is why there is so much written about him!
Saturn is in Libra in the sixth house. Saturn represents our discipline, Libra our desire to relate to others and the sixth house is our house of routine. Wikipedia states, “On 26th April 1957, at 10:30 pm, Moore presented the first episode of The Sky at Night, which was about the Comet Arend-Roland. The show was pitched to casual viewers up to professional astronomers, in a format which has remained consistent since its inception. Moore presented every episode each month, except July 2004, when he was replaced by Chris Lintott because Moore suffered a near-fatal bout of food poisoning caused by eating a contaminated goose egg. Moore appears in the Guinness World Records book as the world’s longest-serving TV presenter, by virtue of having presented the show since 1957. From 2004 to 2012, the program was presented from Moore’s home, since he could not travel because of his arthritis. Dedication and Discipline (Saturn) to maintain his routine and service(sixth house) to relating to others (Libra) could not be more obvious in this life. I feel that Saturn is appropriately placed. (Health issues which were abundant for Moore could be discussed as well)
Jupiter is also in the sixth house but in the intense sign of Scorpio. I also feel that this is an appropriate placement for Jupiter as Jupiter represents expansion and the sixth house represents service. Jupiter in this case is also trine Sun conjunct Uranus in the 11th house of groups and social activism. This man served and served and served the part of the community interested in the night sky in his way (Broadcasting and writing about Astronomy) with great intensity (Scorpio) He was also very intense and outspoken and forthright in his thoughts about many things. (Not necessarily “right” but definitely “forthright”!)
Venus is in the ninth house in the sign of Capricorn. Venus represents love, our need for love, and our giving, and generosity of spirit. I think this could be aptly placed in the ninth house in the sign of Capricorn for two reasons. Sir Patrick Moore’s generosity of spirit or giving nature was in the form of knowledge, one might say higher, or accomplished (Capricorn) knowledge (about astronomy) and alternately his need for love is in this house of spirit in the sign of Saturn (which can be a harsh restrictive/limiting sign).
Venus is square Mars in Taurus in the 12th house. Mars represents accidents, the 12th house karma, Taurus can manifest as physical events and the aspect of the square shows a tension meaning that two things cannot exist together easily. In this case a physical (Taurus)accident (Mars) happened that took away(Capricorn) the love of Moore’s life Lorna(Venus) and thus she (Venus) remained only idealized in spirit form (9th house)
Mercury in the tenth in Aquarius. Patrick Alfred Moore was a famous (10th house-career/public success) Astronomer (Aquarius rules Astronomy) Pop culture personality (Mercury/10th house) who broadcasted a show about the night sky. (Mercury rules communication in Aquarius which would encompass Astronomy)
Sun conjunct Uranus in the 11th. The Sun represents one’s Vitality and sense of individuality and the sign of Pisces is a soul-yearning, a need to commit to a dream or ideal, a healing compassion for all that suffers. Uranus which is also in the Universal sign of Piscean love is representative of individualistic freedom with an urge toward differentiation and a need for change and expression without restraint. This Piscean combination here presents itself in the 11th house of group affiliations, social circles, social activism, organizations friends and associates. This placement speaks to me of an individual (Uranus) different from others in a stand out way (Uranus conjunct the Sun) who was dedicated to a greater cause (learning about the Universe) and the group affiliated with it (11th house) for all the reasons Pisces represents Universal Love.
I find evidence of this in several parts of his biography:
First it states that despite some of the questions that did annoy him Sir Patrick Moore "always made a point of responding to all letters delivered to his house and he sent a variety of standard replies to all letters asking basic questions, as well as those from conspiracy theorist, proponents of hunting and ‘cranks’". And ‘Despite his fame, as of 2003 his phone number was listed in the telephone directory and he was happy to show members of the public round his observatory.’ To me these instances show a dedication to sharing his love of astronomy with all (Universal Love= Pisces).
Further proof of his Piscean nature may be found in the following excerpt from his biography on Wikipedia, “He was an opponent of fox hunting and blood sports. Though not a vegetarian, he stated that he held” a deep contempt for people who go out to kill merely to amuse themselves” He was a lifelong animal lover, actively supporting many animal welfare charities (particularly Cats Protection) He had a particular affinity for cats and stated that “a catless house is a soulless house”.
Finally, upon his death, Queen guitarist Brian May, who published a book on astronomy written with Moore, described him as a “dear friend, and a kind of father figure to me”. He said; “Patrick was the last of a generation, a true gentleman, the most generous in nature that I even knew, and an inspiration to thousands in his personal life, and to millions through his 50 years of unique broadcasting. It’s no exaggeration to say that Patrick in his tireless and ebullient communication of the magic of astronomy, inspired every British astronomer, amateur and professional, for half a century. There will never be another Patrick Moore. But we were lucky enough to get one.” I think this solidly places his Unique Piscean Life Force (Uranus conjunct the Sun)in the 11th house of group affiliations as he impacted so strongly a certain large group of people (amateur and perhaps professional astronomers alike).
The last planet to be discussed then would be Mars at 00 degrees Taurus sixteen minutes in the 12th house.
The 12th house can represent our sorrows, suffering, loss, karma, the mysteries, secrets, what is hidden, and spiritual service. Mars represents our desire, will toward action, and need for faith. Mars is a pure dynamic energy which can be constructive or very destructive. Taurus is the sign of stability, structure and a depth of appreciation related to immediate physical sensations.
Again I find two ways to describe why Mars’ position here can be explained. The first is the very concrete and tragic event of the loss of Sir Patrick Moore’s fiancé at a young age during the Second world war. His fiance’s vehicle was struck by a bomb and she died. (In horrible irony Moore himself was a flight lieutenant in the RAF Bomber command in the war. Although the intent was to keep to military targets, the RAF raids caused the loss of up to 600,000 civilian lives)
The image on the left is of the site where his fiancé died.
In Moore's chart, Mars (which relates to accidents) in Taurus (physical events) in the 12th house (loss, suffering, and even karma) is square (square aspects show where energy must be released, usually through action of a definite sort, in order that a new structure may be built) Venus (his need for love). I find this sadly descriptive of the tragic accident that took his fiance’s life.
Mars is also appropriate in the twelfth house here for Sir Patrick Moore in that it shows his will toward action to achieve tangible results (Taurus) in the 12th house which covers mysteries, secrets and what is hidden. What could be more mysterious, secret or hidden than the Universe beyond? That was his motivation in life and he wrote many books and created many broadcasts to try and explain the Universe. For these reasons I can accept Mars placed here in the 12th house.
Step 3. Appropriate day-for-a-year Naibod progressed aspects in either longitude or declination should coincide with every important life event with 00;-4’ of accuracy. A minimum of three events should be tested, but more are desirable, and many of the events should be accompanied by aspects involving the Angles- natal or progressed, Ascendant or Midheaven.
I have chosen to look at the Sir Patrick Moore’s progressed declination lifetime graphic to answer this question (see chart below - click on image to open in a new window).
“The moon at crossover can quite often indicate a time of crisis.” (C. Tebbs)
In 1937 Sir Patrick Alfred Moore’s Moon was at 0 degrees cross over when his mentor, the man who ran the observatory at which he studied was killed in a road accident.
Later that year his moon became parallel with his North Node (his correct direction in life). At that time he was invited to run the same small observatory at that young age of fourteen.
“An inner planet or angle at maximum or crossover suggests changes in the life according to the planets astrological symbolism” (C. Tebbs.)
- The death of his Sir Patrick Alfred Moore’s Father, Captain Charles Trachsel Caldwell-Moore, in 1947 from the gas he had inhaled back in the trenches of the Great War, fuelled his hatred of the German nation.
- In 1947 his progressed Moon became parallel with his natal Mars.
- Ten years ago in 2002, his health took a turn for the worse. A spinal injury that dated back to his time in the RAF meant one morning he woke to find the right side of his body was immobile, and so he became dependent on a team of carers. Exactly 10 years ago by declination St Patrick Patrick Moore’s progressed moon became parallel with his natal Mars.
“Clearly maximum North or maximum South marks the end of one phase of life and the beginning of a new one.When many other timing factors lend support, the end of life can occur at one of these important stations of the moon’s declination”. (C. Tebbs)
- On December 9, 2012 a few degrees after the Moon hit maximum South declination in Sir Patrick Thomas’ chart and became conjunct with the MC (his public persona) he passed away.
Step 4:If in using the Placidus system intercepted houses are present, the intercepted pair of houses will match the vocation or a strong avocation or at least their activities a strong tendency.
Sir Patrick Alfred Moore does have intercepted houses in his Natal Chart when using the Placidus house system . Taurus is intercepted in the 12th and Scorpio in the 6th. From her book, Vocational Astrology, Judith Hill lists that Taurus types can be ‘excellent musicians and composers’ and this was true in this case as Wikipedia states that ‘Patrick Moore was a self-taught xylophone and piano player as well as an accomplished composer’. Judith Hill notes that Scorpio types need high intensity focus and have a willingness to give there all in battle. Patrick Moore lied about his age so that he could join the military early and fight in World War II. He served for five years and there are also some allusions to him doing some work that was of a ‘secret’ nature. This seems to fit the Scorpio nature.
Step 5. If planets are conjunct or parallel the Ascendant, Midheaven, Descendant or Imum Coeli, extraordinary or recognizable traits will be evident according to the symbolism of the planet and the sign.
The only planet I found conjunct an angle in Sir Patrick Moore’s chart was Venus conjunct his MC. I think it was evident that his heart was in his work. Vesta an asteroid described as follows by authors Bloch and Demetra "using work as a compensation" is also parallel Neptune (his ideals/dreams) in his fourth house of family. And Ceres the asteroid having to do with parenting is parallel Chiron the planetoid known for showing where one’s wounds are in this life in the 10th house which seems to fit when considering the quote from above, where Sir Patrick Moore said he would have liked a family but it was not to be.
Step 6. The overall horoscope shall fit the person exactly, without any doubts or exceptions.
At this final check point, I feel pretty confident that this is a workable chart for Sir Patrick Alfred Moore.
Overall, I think I would have gotten more from this method of rectification if I had read all of Willner’s book. But now that I have gone through the entire rectification process, I think it is difficult to try anything before using Solar Arc to check the angles.
I can accept the idea of the spiritual birth time being different than the physical birth time. However, I find that looking at the Ascendant to see if characteristics match, before checking for specific indications that the angles are correct, is too subjective. Willner's steps 3 and 4 do check the event history anyway. So I find it makes more sense to use solar arc techniques and check the angles first (as I have been taught in the Kepler W112 course!).