- Jack London Horoscope -
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The Horoscope

Made and interpreted by:
H.P. Sauerwein
Translated for JLG by
Sylvia Englert

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Jack London - Horoscope

* 12.01.1876 2 p.m. San Francisco (Lois Rodden "AstroDataBank")
+ 22.11.1916 6.30 p.m. Glen Ellen [vs. 7.45 p.m. Lois Rodden "AstroDataBank"]

Bevor we knew of the time of his birth given in Lois Roddenīs "AstroDataBank" (2 p.m.), Stefan Etzel estimated 1.30 p.m. on the basis of the moonīs position.
This time was used for the horoscope, since the difference is slight and Lois Roddenīs information has the rating B, meaning that it is not very exact.
That can usually be assumed anyway when full hours are given.

The analysis was done on December 12, 1999 by the professional astrologer Hans-Peter Sauerwein. He knew that the subject was Jack London and had a general idea of his work and life, but wasnīt informed about details about Londonīs parents, women, and psychological disposition.

The text is the protocol of the recorded session. Our questions were added in italics. Comments are in [brackets] and italics.

The analysis

Sun: Capricorn
Ascendancy: Gemini (this would also be the case if heīd been born at 2 p.m.)

Saturn in Aquarius in the 10th house in conjunction with Venus indicates strong moral/ethical influence from early childhood. It is repeated by Mars and the Moon knot in the 11. house. This means Aquarius characteristics: we are dealing with a boy with a strong mother-son-conflict, a kind of hate-love (opposition) and fascination.
Uranus stands with the Moon in opposition to Venus: his mother must have been quite an unusual women, or possibly this feeling is directed not at his real mother but some other women who acted as a mother-figure. There was clearly an almost erotic tension in his childhood. The opposition of Moon/Uranus to Saturn/Venus forms a main axis in this horoscope. It lies in the so-called "relationship axis" [in Etzelīs opinion it is the "individuation axis", this should be examined more closely], indicating that it is his pattern to form close and intense relationships, but to let go again quickly.
The Moon/Uranus-Konjunction is very restless, erratic. The Moon in Leo means that the person wants to be admired and applauded, he needs a stage, desires to be popular, to move in masses of people. What concerns love and relationships, Iīd tend to see a difficult person in him, in spite of his natural curiosity and the delight with which he communicates [also: likes to talk, writes reports for friends & family]. This also points to a career as journalist or author. This could be especially true for the young Jack London. One tries to decode young people with their ascendancy and the Moon. Here, the Moon in Leo indicates a tendency to experiment, inventiveness and adventurousness.
The way he depicted himself in his books or the way he described his protagonists (usually bold adventurers), is indicated in the position of the Sun in his horoscope. The result is a very basic problem with people, almost the inability to form relationships or the tendency to feel uneasy with these attachments, to feel they "didnīt quite fit".
Pluto in the 12. house in opposition to Jupiter, the second axis of opposition. With the position of Pluto, here we have the drive, the inner vision. Neptune, too, just enters Taurus. This combined with the Sun in the 9th house stands for adventure, freedom, a world-view in the literal sense of leaving to see the world. He seems to me, as far as I know him, to be a strong Sun-personality.
I think I can base this assumption on two things: Mars in conjunction with the moon knot in the 11. house: the guts to live his dreams, to just start running with the attitude of "Letīs go into the forest, weīll emerge again somewhere, and if we donīt, well, at least weīve had some interesting experiences."
And the influence of the Moon says: Yes, move this way, be active, be alive, be the pioneer. He was lucky in more than one way that he has Jupiter in Scorpio in the 6th house, making him a good observer who has a clear view of life. With the quality of Scorpio, his vision gains in depth. Gemini-Ascendancy and the Moon in Leo would make him reflect life superficially, but the other opposition on the "axis of suffering" gives him insights into problems and in ways a life, through which he gains more depth, since he has his feet planted firmly on the ground. Since heīs experienced Alaska, being a tramp and other things, in a way heīs almost a correspondent of war [Sauerwein didnīt know that J.L. really did work as one] and homes in on the exciting things.

Heīs fascinated by life, the existence. The conjunction Mars/Moon knot indicates enthusiasm for dynamism and energy.

JLG: Couldnīt this conjunction be interpreted as embodying a contemporary ideal of what it means to be a man?

Yes! The position of Mars in Pisces might explain his vigorous commitment to social justice. Actually, he was one of the few people of his age who offered positive concepts of maleness in his books as well as his life. To be the "new man". The Moon in Leo makes him the little boy who wants to go exploring all of his life. Everything connected with violence, meaning even more power and dynamic energy, fascinates him.
This has to do with Pluto and Neptune in Taurus what concerns his time and epoch; in the personal aspect, Sun and Mars make him a rather passive man. Heīs not a pioneer, but when a pioneer went somewhere, heīs the second man to go. His interest and inclination for literature I see in the position of Mercury and Venus/Saturn in the 10th house: There has to be an interest in earning money here. Jack London had a personality of constant friction: He was constantly irritable, he could never find peace and rest.
Writing allowed him to get rid of it, to make way for new experiences. London wasnīt somebody who wrote to cope with his problems, he wrote to make money. You could call him a craftsman. Well, letīs take a look at this Mercury/Neptune quadrant: old astrological guidelines call this the "aspect of lying" of, to put it more positively, the "aspect of storytelling".
Very often it is the case that the person has such a wealth of images and information at his disposition that he often experiences disbelief from his audience when he tells somebody about it. So he just invents something. Through making writing his profession, this problem can be solved very cleverly. Other aspects of the horoscope show a structure of growth (opposition on the individuation axis, see above).
Jack London created a pressure on himself which forced him to go on developing through creating impossibilities. This opposition demands of the owner of the horoscope to individualize himself, to work on his special personality. What surprises me is there donīt seem to be any indications for addictions or alcoholism. That can be included in the Mercury/Neptune-quadrant. He might have been addicted to energy as a result of the general structure or because all the female planets and the planets of enjoyment (Moon, Venus, Saturn) are all in one tension. That means he was always full of restless energy. Jupiter is a planet of appreciation, but Jupiter is in the 6th house, meaning that he could pour himself a drink only when he was through with his dayīs work, then he could relish it as a treat for work well done.

[In the period where he created the main body of his work, this was true for him - he drank only after heīd completed his work for the day].

My guess at his psychological disposition would be a personality with a very strong anima. Both Sun and Mars in a female Sign of the zodiac. He was very conscious of the soft, female part of his soul, but he didnīt have an idea how to deal with this and himself (Moon knot in conjunction with Mars). Fleeing from this female part in himself and his subconscious he proceeded to...

... create a super-male dummy for himself...

... yes, to find out what is means to be a man. The position of male planets in a female Sign means an active anima, female characteristics possibly evident from very early on in his life. He could also have become a tramp, if heīd failed as a man. Overwhelmed by his anima. Often found in men who marry to young and then degenerate to a henpecked husband, completely passive. Not creating actively but consuming passively. When male planets are found in a female Sign, the person will always need a stimulus to respond with activity. Possibly he was never really satisfied when he was looking for a partner or a sexual experience. Maybe momentarily, but his soul, his capacity for experience, what he was able to, wasnīt satisfied by "normal" relationships. He probably didnīt have many very good friends, lots of buddys of course but not close friends where he didnīt have to be the strong guy all the time. He wasnīt allowed to be weak, else he would have been suspected of being homosexual. That also emerges from what I said before, the female part in his soul. In his time it wasnīt common knowledge that the subconscious is organized in another gender and has to be integrated. He discovered this female self, probably got a big shock, started running and playing the strong guy.

[A discussion followed about the different women in Jack Londonīs life. One opinion was that Anna Strunsky would have been the ideal partner for him.]

The chance of a marriage for social reasons and for safety is contained in the Venus/Saturn conjunction, but it is in opposition to the Moon/Uranus conjunction. That (the eruption of this suppressed emotional nature) lets him escape quite suddenly, without warning. Itīs quite surprising from his horoscope that this man had such a success as a writer. It might be indicated by the position of Pluto as master of tensions, meaning that Jack London could have been a figure the masses projected on. The broken hero as focus of identification became popular in these years, after all. From the commercial side, the horoscope indicates that he was quite a good salesman (Ascendancy Gemini), but also felt prostituted in a certain way (descending Moon knot in the 5th house).

JLG: What does the horoscope indicate about ideals?

The well-occupied 9th, 10th and 11th house denote the effect of guiding principles, but which were strongly fueled by the subconscious. The orientation to revolutionary ideas can be explained through the Moon/Uranus-conjunction in the 4th house. Isnīt it visible there that London was committed to a specifically American kind of socialism and not to international marxism? Absolutely.

JLG: What do you see for his 30th year [1906]?

A situation of upheaval. Complete disruption of his old life, I guess combined with a great disappointment in love. [This year war a turning-point in Jack Londonīs life. His existence as a socialist ended, shortly before he had divorced and remarried.] Before 1906 he must have been a youthful adventurer, after that he war the calculating writer. For safetyīs sake, he gave up his fight for ideals.

JLG: What do you see for his 37th year [1913]?

I donīt see much there right away. Maybe a new beginning, because he perceived that his life was heading nowhere. I have a stronger impression of the years 1911 and 1912. There seems to be an inner turning-point.

JLG: What do you see for the 40th year of his life [1916]?

A meeting with something that fascinates him, something unknown and threatening. It could mean a crash, but also an opening to something new and unknown. Becoming conscious of being stuck, of an inner blockage. Liberation is the important topic.

JLG: It was the year of his death.

Oh, I didnīt know that.

co. Reinhard Wissdorf / Stefan Etzel 1999 | Jack London Home | Essays | eMail