health astrology

The astrology of Rosie O’Donnell’s heart attack

Rosie O'Donnell heart attackRosie O’Donnell, the well-known comedienne, suffered a heart attack this week at the age of 50.  I have profiled Rosie in these pages before, especially about her “Mars problem” as I call it:

It’s no secret that the most brilliant comedians are often depressed and angry individuals who release their frustration through comedy, and Rosie O’Donnell is no exception. Rosie was born with the Sun in Aries, the sign that is ruled by the god of war. The Aries influence is dynamic and inspirational but can also be rebellious and impulsive. Rosie O’Donnell exhibits all of these character traits.


Mars in her chart, the planet that rules her Aries Sun, falls in the mystical and adaptable sign of Pisces. When the fiery god of war (Mars) is expressed through the watery sign of empathy and the subconscious (Pisces), there is a tendency for unconscious resentments, anger turned inward into depression. In addition, Pisces tends to shrink from conflict so Mars in Pisces can produce passive aggressive behavior that doesn’t confront a problem directly but instead is outwardly peaceful (Pisces) but subtly sabotages a situation.


Mars in Rosie’s chart is conjunct Mercury, the planet of communication and transmission of ideas, a combination that links her aggressive instinct (Mars) with her thoughts and words (Mercury). Because Mercury is also in sensitive Pisces, Rosie is extremely empathic and compassionate to those around her, but she can also become a warrior (Mars) with words (Mercury) when she is crossed. Both Mars and Mercury are conjunct Chiron, the god of wounding and healing, which suggests a hypersensitivity that can be very reactive.


This Mars/Mercury/Chiron combination is opposed by Pluto, the planet of power and transformation. When the god of war faces off with the god of the underworld, there are power struggles and a sense of frustration that both generates a tremendous amount of physical energy but also can lead to an underlying rage. Mercury in opposition to Pluto shows an individual with an intensely probing mind who can become overly obsessive. Because in Rosie’s chart her frustration and rage is difficult to express through the watery Pisces influence, she carries that frustration around within her where it leaks out at inopportune moments, such as Rosie’s recent feuds with Donald Trump and Elisabeth Hasselbeck.


Rosie is in the middle of her Chiron return right now – the planetary cycle of Chiron that occurs for everyone when they are 50-52 and Chiron in the sky returns to the same degree as it is in our individual charts.  Chiron cycles tend to bring out issues that need resolving – it is known as the “wounded healer,” but more than that I like to call it the Soul Healer” because as these old wounds are wounds of the soul as well as the psyche and their healing helps us to advance in our soul evolution as well as personal development.
Our resistance to this evolution can create problems for us, both psychological and physical and nowhere is this more true than in Chiron cycles which are often associated with health problems.  It’s commonly said that “after 50 the body goes downhill” – astrologically, this is due to the shifts that occur at the Chiron return.
For Rosie, this is made more complicated by the fact that her Chiron is part of this major system in her chart as described above, so when Chiron returns to its place in her chart it is also transiting her Mars, and opposing Pluto where soul surgery is necessary.  This is an intense time that requires a great deal of internal work to navigate.
Uranus is working on Rosie too with an awkward (inconjunct/quincunx) aspect to the Mars/Chiron/Pluto system.  Uranus is electrical in nature, and because the pumping of the heart is an electrical process, challenging transits of Uranus can sometimes interfere with this mechanism and create heart difficulties where there are energetic blocks.
For Rosie O’Donnell, and others with the kind of pent-up rage that is the hallmark of a chart like this, regular physical activity is critical so that the energy that builds up can be released in a positive way.  Rosie is overweight, but in my view this is a symptom of the Mars problem rather than the source of the health problem since the Mars problem causes frustration to build up to a point where it needs to be addressed in some way, and many of us turn to food for that release.
The fact that Rosie didn’t take her chest pains seriously and didn’t know she had had a heart attack until she went to the cardiologist the next day could show that this kind of stress is more familiar to her.  Stress is indeed a killer, and I hope that she takes advantage of this event to do some critical inner healing work.
Disclaimer: I have no medical training and nothing in this article is intended as medical advice.  
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By | 2012-08-22T07:27:12+00:00 August 22nd, 2012|Health & Healing|3 Comments

The astrology of Multiple Sclerosis: Jack Osbourne

Jack Osbourne MS astrologyJust a few weeks ago I did a reading for a client with MS and wrote about it here in a discussion of the correlation between “warrior energy” and immune system disorders including MS.  Shortly thereafter celebrity Jack Osbourne announced that he has been diagnosed with MS.

Osbourne is known primarily through the television reality show The Osbournes in which he is portrayed as the rebellious and drug addicted son of metal rocker Ozzy Osbourne.  Jack Osbourne was dyslexic as a child and put on Ritalin for an ADD diagnosis as a teenager.  His use of drugs escalated when his mother was diagnosed with cancer in 2002, and in 2003 at the age of 18 he was admitted to a psychiatric ward for an oxycontin addiction. Shortly thereafter he attempted suicide by cutting his wrists after being rejected by a girlfriend (according to his new book; most accounts report that the suicide attempt occurred after his mother’s cancer diagnosis).

Jack Osbourne’s astrological chart reveals some interesting clues.  If the birthtime sourced by Astrotheme is correct he has Leo rising, with the Sun in Scorpio and a Virgo Moon.  Someone with a Scorpio Sun is meant to live life intensely and with emotional fearlessness – to challenge themselves and others in a relentless journey to the ultimate Truth.  But Leo seeks joy and happiness in life, and has a great need to be loved and appreciated.  These two signs conflict with each other, resulting in a challenging inner debate.  Scorpio is secretive and private, and Leo desires publicity and recognition.

His Virgo Moon can be somewhat fearful and security-driven, and while the Leo ascendant seeks the spotlight his Virgo Moon likely worries about the future and his Scorpio Sun shrinks from all of that attention and exposure of his inner world.  I suspect that while Jack’s Leo ascendant would have been quite excited about the reality show with his family, it was likely very difficult for him and created a great deal of inner stress.

Still, when the original show The Osbournes was over Jack signed up for a new reality show called Adrenaline Junkie.   This is interesting astrologically because Jack has a weak Mars – situated in the peace and harmony-loving sign of Libra, the warrior planet is not easily expressed here.  His Mars is squared by Neptune, a quality that was evident in other charts that I examined for the article cited above.  Neptune is the planet of transcendence and spirituality, and when placed in a challenging aspect to Mars we tend to see individuals who seek to transcend their drive and desire nature (Mars) rather than express it.  Consequently that drive and aggressive force tends to build up in the body where it cannot easily find an outlet and this can result in health problems.  Please note that I am not a trained medical professional and any advice given in this column should be confirmed with your doctor.  

A Grand Trine in Jack’s chart links Mars, Jupiter (abundance and good fortune) with Chiron, the planet of wounding and healing.  Jack began to turn his life around in 2004 when a complete physical makeover prepared him for the new program which pushed his physical abilities to the limit, the perfect thing for a Mars-challenged individual.  With this Grand Trine I think it is likely that the MS diagnosis will not create crippling problems for him.

He does have an opposition from Chiron to Uranus (see more details in this article) which can indicate an unbalanced and extremely sensitive nervous system. This would make him more susceptible to the kind of nerve damage found in MS.

Jack has been going through some challenging transits to his natal and progressed Mars over the past year or so involving Saturn (conjunction to progressed Mars beginning last November), Pluto (square natal Mars beginning in January) and Uranus (opposing natal Mars beginning late May).  Transiting planets hitting Mars in our chart can trigger eruptions of some kind, and since Jack is currently without a physical outlet for his adrenaline  (having become engaged in the fall of 2011 and a recent new dad) he is likely more sensitive to the planetary triggers to his nervous system.

This kind of Mars-related immune disorder drains physical energy and makes it feel impossible to get any kind of physical activity, but it is my hypothesis that this is exactly what is helpful to combat these illnesses. And science agrees:

In the 1970s, there was quite strong prevailing medical opinion that people with MS should avoid exercise, that it could somehow be detrimental. There is now good evidence that exercise improves fitness and function in mild MS and maintains function for people moderate to severe disability.4 There is strong evidence that exercise therapy, including aerobic exercise and resistance training, improves muscle power function, exercise tolerance functions and mobility-related activities such as walking in people with significant disability.5-11Exercise also improves mood and general well-being.7,12,13 Walking distance has been shown to be increased with regular treadmill training.14 Interestingly, some of the benefit of exercise in MS seems to be more pronounced in women.15

I’m very encouraged to see mainstream medicine continuing to exhibit more openness to the body/mind/spirit connections to disease.  Meanwhile, my best recommendation for just about everyone is to get as much sensible physical activity as is reasonably possible.  Not only is it healing for the body, the mind AND the spirit, it is the Fountain of Youth!

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By | 2012-06-22T08:16:10+00:00 June 22nd, 2012|Health & Healing, People|0 Comments

Warrior energy and health problems

Health astrologyby Lynn Hayes  Please note that the URL of this blog has changed and update your bookmarks.  I am not certain where this art came from originally, but I found it here.

As many of you know, I have a special interest in energy imbalances and health as shown in the birthchart.  Disclaimer:  I have no medical training and any medical information that appears in this blog contains only my own hypothetical beliefs and should not in any way be construed as medical advice. When there is an immune system disorder of some sort, such as Multiple Sclerosis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue symdrome, and other similar ailments I nearly always see what I call a “fire problem” in the chart.

Fire is the element of action and initiation – it creates the drive and ambition that inspires us and stimulates desire and need.  When a chart lacks the fire element, or if there is a strong Mars that is afflicted by a challenging aspect from Neptune, Saturn or Pluto without other supporting factors, the  fire energy is more difficult to express and can back up into energetic blocks in the body.  You can read more about that in this earlier post.

The other day I did a reading for a client who has Multiple Sclerosis.  Her chart showed Mars in Leo – a powerfully expressive Mars that demands attention and enthusiasm – but it was opposed by Neptune, the planet of subjugation and transcendence.  She had no other fire in her chart, and she had a great deal of difficulty expressing her needs (Mars in Leo) or dealing with any feelings of anger when her boundaries were violated.  After her MS diagnosis she found she could use that fact to assert herself more strongly into the world.  Now when people tried to get her to do things she didn’t want to do, she could say “I can’t, I have MS.”  The human mind/body system is an amazing thing.

When we discussed the Mars connection, she told me about a website called MASHNorth (Metaphysical And Spiritual Healing) that included information on a metaphysical approach to ALS. ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease) is related to MS in that both are neurological disorders, but in MS the immune system attacks the myelin sheathing on the nerves whereas in ALS  the motor neurons disintegrate with no apparent cause.  My Mars hypothesis is limited right now to immune system disorders, but the ideas in this website are interesting because they too deal with the warrior archetype (Mars was the god of war, and Mars does rule warfare, anger and rage):

We are proposing that prior group warrior memories are one environmental trigger of ALS, and that the warrior archetype of devoted physical action (as in soldiers, athletes, nurses, police and fire people) is associated with ALS, just as the Type A personality is associated with heart dis-ease.  [See the details here.]

Studies have shown that military veterans are twice as likely to contract ALS, and athletes (such as Lou Gehrig, for whom the disease is named) also have a higher than normal incidence of the disease.  This has led some to hypothesize that brain trauma could explain the higher incidence among these groups.  However, both of these groups share this “warrior energy” which astrologers term as “Mars,” and the MASHNorth site suggests:

The stronger the vow and the attachment to a prior group warrior experience, the more the “top gun team warrior-ness” as in Lou Gehrig, Jimmy “Catfish” Hunter, top gun Gulf War veteran Major Michael Donnelly and the professional athletes. In terms of ALS, an intense warrior vow, as the scientific studies show, manifests as an elevated rate of ALS in warriors that is “dose related” and that occurs as an early onset.

I thought I’d take a look at Lou Gehrig’s chart, and sure enough we see the Moon in Aries, Mars’s own sign, opposite Mars in Libra.  The Moon in Aries has a strong primal need to be a warrior: to be strong and assertive and think for oneself.  Mars is said to be in its detriment in Libra because the drive (Mars) is for peace and harmony whether than assertion of the aggressive force.  Mars is squared by Neptune, the planet of transcendence and spirituality.  Neptune is a beautiful planet for creativity, art and meditation, but it is not very helpful for Martian enterprise.  This chart has fire problems, and when you combine the conjunction of the Gemini Sun to Pluto, it’s clear that Lou Gehrig was going to have experiences that challenged him and forced him to deconstruct (Pluto) himself (Sun) to rebuild and transform.

Another famous ALS patient, Stephen Hawking, has Mars at late Aries in a tight quincunx to Neptune.

Richard Pryor, a famous MS patient, has Mars in Scorpio, the other sign that is (traditionally) ruled by Mars.  He has the Sun in Sagittarius, a fire sign, so the fire element is strong in his chart, but Pisces is rising and that Scorpio Mars, which can be quite intense in its need to project, is opposed by both Jupiter which expands it, and Saturn which oppresses it.

The cure for Mars problems is self-assertion and physical activity.  In order for Mars to be properly expressed and find balance in the energetic system, it must be able to follow its path and accomplish its goals of achieving one’s individual needs and activating the energetic force.  When this cannot be accomplished, it is my hypothesis and believe, that energetic force turns inward and is translated by the body into immune system disorders.

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By | 2012-06-01T09:56:47+00:00 June 1st, 2012|Health & Healing|10 Comments