Although I was a fan of Molly Ivins for years, it wasn’t until the Bush administration that her biting yet hilarious wit became a must-read for anyone skeptical of the Bush presidency. Ivins was celebrated for her unconventional and unabashedly liberal views and her passion for life and for her rebellious disdain for those in power.

Click chart to enlarge. Molly Ivins was born with a powerful Virgo influence including the Sun. That will surprise anyone who knows that Virgos are typically shy and modest and dislike the spotlight. However, Molly’s Sun was exactly conjunct Jupiter, the planet that expands and enlarges our perspective. A Jupiter/Sun conjunction indicates someone who is bigger than life, who approaches every aspect of her life in a big way. Rarely do these people do anything in moderation, and there is an expansion (Jupiter) of the ego (Sun) which affords a healthy sense of self-esteem and self-confidence. Jupiter confers a strong sense of mission and someone with this planetary combination often feels they have been personally chosen to accomplish this mission.

This Sun/Jupiter conjunction is in conflict with (squares) the planet Uranus. Uranus is the rebel, the revolutionary. Uranus flaunts convention and can be unpredictable and erratic. When in a difficult aspect to the Sun, there is an almost relentless pressure to overturn the status quo and effect change for the simple sake of change. The addition of Jupiter here simply increases this tendency to “go off the deep end.” However, with Jupiter and Uranus there is a deep-rooted desire for justice and equality and the Sun adds the energy to fulfill the mission. From the beginning of Molly’s career in the early 1960s, she made heroes of those involved in the “movements of social change” and celebrated their accomplishments.

The combination of Sun/Jupiter in Virgo that conflicts with Uranus made Molly a classic “Radical Virgo.” Where Virgos are typically known for their caution and conservative approach to life, the Radical Virgo is one who uses the Virgo powers of discrimination and versatility to change the world. Virgo is famously critical and particular, and Molly’s Virgo vision gave her a laserlike view into the workings of the political structure. Mercury (thought process) in her chart was also in Virgo and it was conjunct Chiron (the wounded healer archetype), urging her to use her powers of communication (Mercury) to effect change and transformation (Chiron).

Being the sign of the Virgin, a word that in antiquity meant “unmarried woman,” those born under the Virgo influence are often comfortable remaining single for long periods of time. Molly Ivins never married and poured her spectacular energy into her work. She never ceased speaking truth to power, whether it was the Texas legislature, her employers or a long series of Presidents. In her own words, “So keep fightin’ for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don’t you forget to have fun doin’ it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin’ ass and celebratin’ the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was.”

It is interesting astrologically that at the time of Molly’s death this week transiting Uranus and Jupiter, which have been square to each other in the sky, were transiting the Sun/ Jupiter/ Uranus combination in Molly’s chart. We often see Jupiter transits at the time of death, but the addition of Uranus, particularly in aspect to the configuration that directed Molly’s outrage and quest for social justice, indicates that something powerful is likely to come out of her death. In death she has become even more of a hero than she was in life.

for more about Molly, read this great tribute from John Nichols.

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