Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Trying to explain Fred and Shirley Phelps

It is hard to explain why a person loves to hate, but some people just do, like Fred and his daughter Shirley Phelps. Here above is the chart of the day of birth of Fred Phelps with the transits for the day that his daughter was born. The minor hard aspects with the extraordinary objects Vesta and Eris and the quindecile between Mars and Chiron could be the explanation for the extreme expression of sexual and political hate.

Father, daughter, family and followers are members of the Westboro Baptist Church, founded by Fred himself. He and his followers use to wish everybody else to hell and they expect the world to allow so because of the First Amendment. They appear at funerals of homosexuals and soldiers and shout that the deceased are hated. You'd say that the law would protect the families of the deceased against this kind of disturbance but instead the father of a killed soldier now has to pay the church. I can't understand the idea behind that, maybe you can. Here is the story...

Often the leaders of an institution are an example to the followers. They follow Phelps in his outbursts of anger and love of discord. The tightest aspects in his chart with the often unnoticed Chiron, Vesta and Eris are not explaining why he chooses to do so, but they are reflecting hidden frustration, pain and anger in the man who is the catalyst in persona for group events filled with hate.

Trying to explain the extreme personality of Fred Phelps by means of a chart without hour of birth is not easy. I guess that his indiviual chart with hour of birth wold explain a lot. On the day of his birth there were several indications for successful comminciations and though the contents are controversial and filled with hate, he managed to get a group of fans and followers united in his 'church'. (His orientation is mirrored by Neptune, the symbol of beliefs, fantasy, art, visions and the immaterial field.)

It is also clear that the combination of Sun Scorpio and Moon in Aries with Sun trine Pluto and conjunct Mars (resonating the Scorpio-Aries combination) is the recipe for a person with a fanatic and strong drive. Mercury has minor afflictions, for example the inconjunct with the 'calling' Jupiter, semi square with Saturn and biquintile with Uranus. This could be read as overstating his point of view of what freedom of speech is. He is creative in provoking discussions.

A lot of the issue of hurting people is in Mars quindecile Chiron. When Phelps was five years old, his mother died (with progressed Sun conjunct natal
Mars and quindecile Chiron). Perhaps that is when he got hurt inside and never found a cure. There is an obsession with pain and sex and a problem with expressing anger (see Cafe Astrology:

His Saturn is sesquisquare Vesta and that is the tightest aspect that I can find in his chart. It is reflecting a sort of a dedication that meets disapproval . Bob Marks refers to sexual hang-ups (repression and denial) and that seems to fit the man (marrying at age 52, fulminating against homosexuals).
The explanations of this tight sesquisquare between Saturn and Vesta combine the hate speeches and sexual problems (again).

Venus is inconjunct Eris (goddess of discord) and I think that this is an interesting aspect considering the man who just loves to make amok wherever he goes. He enjoys (Venus) discord (Eris) in a disproportional way (inconjunction). Maybe he just feels bad and wants to express his feelings:).

If I didn't know about the hate speeches, how would I see this chart (without bias, I mean and without using Chiron, Vesta and Eris)? What you see is an idealist (Neptune oriental) with a very strong drive (Scorpio-Aries, Sun-Mars-Pluto) and an inventive but somewhat narrow mind (Mercury with Jupiter, Uranus and Saturn) in opposition with 'the community'(Node), argumentive at any possible level. Only when you go deeper, you see the hidden and extraordinary problems*).

With an hour of birth this could be more specific, of course. But without taking a look at Chiron,Vesta and Eris and the importance of the event at age 5 (death of mother with P Sun conjunct Mars and quindecile Chiron) the matter of hurt and hurting and sexual hang-ups would not immediately come to mind, unless you consider his background. He is a believer and he apparently likes to believe in a God hating all those who don't try to be like Fred Phelps and his followers appear to be.

In the summer of 1946 he (and his friend) got religious with progressed Sun trine Uranus and transit Uranus inconjunct natal Sun, and progressed Venus (there was a conjunction of progressed Venus and natal Sun). It looks like the same kind of aspects as 'falling in love'. (Maybe that explains the excitement that is on the faces of new believers? or was it because of the cooperation with his friend John Capron). Maybe Uranus is in the 9th house to reflect conversion and controversy because of convictions?

He married in 1952, very late, with progressed Sun opposition Jupiter in Gemini and trine Vesta in Leo, no more than a year after the progressed conjunction of Sun and Mars.

In 1955 he founded the Westboro Baptist Church with Progressed Sun opposition natal Ceres and trine progressed Vesta (the same sort of combination as in 1952, when he married). That is when Saturn was getting closer to Pholus in the progressed chart.

On October 31, 1957 his daughter Shirley was born. She is also devoted to hate speeches and as controversial as her father is. She has Mercury square Uranus (he the biquintile) and they share the oriental Neptune for an idealistic orientation. Both are Scorpio’s, btw.

With Mars quintile Uranus she will have a creative short fuse to add some fuel and she is the kind of person with a passion (Venus sextile Mars). Vesta is inconjunct her Sun.That is for being devoted to a higher cause, but to much and getting out of balance. Her hour of birth might give a clue to why she follows into her father's footsteps like that.

PS I was surprised to see on Wikipedia that Phelps is a Democrat (a member? Do they know that?:)

*) Minor aspects often refer to what is not immediately visible (the hidden things) and the 'extraordinary' is related to asteroids and all other objects that are not the 'usual kind of tools to read charts'.



M.P. Faries said...

Actually, I've come to realize that natal houses (and the "hour of birth") may not be necessary.

Astrological houses actually represent the topics and areas of our lives.

Perhaps the planets in signs, and the aspects between planets, are efficient enough alone in describing the personality of someone.

The houses are, more or less, a map of how someone's planetary energies come into play in his or her life.

Think of it this way, the houses in a birth chart are simply external frames (areas of life), not the internal picture (the personality).

It is only the energies of the stars and planets that influence and compel our personalities.

The houses and which house a planet is in, only frames the beautiful painting (that is the personality).

I can really sense Fred Phelp's personality just by looking at his planetary aspects. That Uranus conjunct Moon in Aries suggests much energy is put into so independently expressing his views and feelings, for example.

Astromarkt said...

Yes, true. The aspects and the midpoint combinations are important and valid whatever house system may be used. Sun, Moon or planets on the angles (AC, DC, MC, IC) show what is prominent, what is most important 'coming out'. The house positions are as you name it " framing the painting".

Thanks for your comment!