Profile: Marilyn Manson

Happy birthday to Brian Warner on January 5th.

Yesterday’s and today’s birthdays were boring, so I jumped ahead a day. As always, I look at the karmic signatures in the chart to understand the ways that someone is wired coming into the life. The biography of any of us reflects how we go about dealing with that karma, which are emotional memories from past lives and the meaning we’ve attached to them.

This story is, from the karmic angle, really juicy. He’s got a 2nd house Libra South Node conjunct Uranus-Jupiter in Libra and Pluto in Virgo, opposing (on the North Node) Chiron in Pisces in the 8th house. And the ruler of the South Node, Venus, is in Pisces in the 7th, inconjunct that Uranus-Jupiter on the South Node. Oh, and Ceres and the true Black Moon Lilith are opposed and square the nodes.

That he seems morbid is either a turn-on or turn-off for you. But do you understand why he does what he does?

5 January 1969, 8:05 PM, Canton OH (rated AA)

1. South Node (SN) in the 2nd says that he’s coming from environments (which is to say training and conditioning) that have a strong emphasis on values. In Libra, he’s been surrounded by politeness, diplomacy and niceties. The bodies conjunct the SN say that those environments have a lot of the energy of each of these bodies. Jupiter is about belief and faith, Uranus about change and individualism (but just as often conformity and boredom), and Pluto about power.

2. Ceres-Lilith in opposition is about an argument in those environments between appropriate kinds of emotional expression. Lilith in Cancer needs to let the wildness of emotional realities seek full expression, even when they make people uncomfortable, and Ceres in Capricorn needs nurturing and care to be practical and conservative. Square the nodes, these parts of life are unresolved issues, meaning that whatever he was taught by his people isn’t enough for him; he needs to learn to make choices other than those he was taught or makes from habit.

3. The North Node (NN) in Aries/8th house is about looking unflinchingly into the darker parts of life, developing courage in the face of death and all the parts of life we tend to consider taboo – all the things in his shows and persona that freak many sorts of people out belong to the 8th house. Chiron in Pisces conjunct the NN is a statement that he hasn’t been trained to process pain surrounding death and the darker parts of life. Performing and persona-ing as he does doesn’t tell us if he has or has not learned to process these things, but in interviews I’ve seen with him, he appears to me to have done so. Chiron in the 8th is a wounding about death, etc., but really about learning to heal our wounding surrounding death. If you’re not allowed to mourn a loved one in the way you need, or not permitted to speak of a loved one who has passed away, the unprocessed pain you have about death can result in Chiron in the 8th house conjunct the NN. This Chiron says that in his various lives, he’s born into families that don’t really know how to process the darker parts of life with open eyes and hearts, but he craves doing so.

4. The SN ruler by sign, Venus, is in Pisces in the 7th. Of the few aspects it makes, the one to work with in order to understand him on deeper levels is the inconjunct between Venus and Jupiter-Uranus in Libra/2nd. Venus represents his role in his various lives – he’ll show up as this kind of person, he’ll be handed roles that fit with this symbolism – and the inconjunct is telling of his having been knocked off course by religious or believing people with firm values. The 8th house Aries NN and Chiron in Pisces conjunct it set the stage for why he’s intent on doing what appears to most people to be acting out, but this inconjunct adds the juice: He’s been hurt by being knocked off course by elements of conformity and is on a mission to vindicated himself via his creativity. To shock people to their cores as a kind of self-validation that says, You can’t force me to be polite anymore, you can’t impinge upon me your morality again, you can’t make me shut up or go away. You can’t hide the dark truths about life from me or expect me to ignore them.

5. Retrograde Pluto in Virgo in the 2nd house. His deepest karmic, soul wounding is in not getting to live according to his own value system (2nd house), picking what felt like the wrong one (Virgo), and/or getting burned out from trying to make others’ value systems work for him (retrograde). At the soul level, his bottom line is in living and creatively expressing himself in any way that feels right to him. He needs to be empowered, but he also needs to make sure the route to empowerment actually leads him to real power. His comments about wishing he’d treated his mother better when he was young illustrate this – he felt empowered by essentially abusing her, and since then has learned to channel the rebellion and anger he feels into his work.

Looking at his chart with more traditional eyes, we can look at his Leo Ascendant and Moon as telling of lots of creative sparks, with Mercury in Aquarius conjunct Eros opposing the Moon adding to them. Mars in Scorpio in the 3rd can be a fiery/dirty/offensive mouth. We can even see the seriousness with which he takes himself and his work reflected by Saturn-Vesta in the 9th house. Yet really understanding what makes him tick and why he does what he does, we have to add in the karmic angle.

Tom Jacobs is a rock-, metal- and spectacle-loving astrologer, medium and channel in Tucson, AZ. Contact him via his site,