Riveting! That's the word I have to describe the new Steve Jobs movie by Aaron Sorkin, released October 9. The film accomplishes this without any action or special effects--just excellent dialogue, superbly delivered by a fine cast of actors. It’s a compelling portrait, depicting the late innovator as incredibly driven and visionary--but not so skilled with people.
The film shows Jobs being domineering and intransigent much of the time. Reviews on the accuracy of this portrayal are mixed. Some have complained that the movie overplays his flaws while ignoring his more admirable qualities. (I've included links to a few articles, below.) I think the filmmakers did a good job of exploring Jobs’s complexities without diminishing his greatness.
After seeing the movie I couldn’t wait to check Astro Databank for Jobs’s birth data. We’re lucky to have a timed chart, rated AA (accurate from birth certificate/record). I was curious to see how well his chart shows the qualities he's best known for. It does this very well, indeed!
Here's his chart (February 24, 1955, 7:15 pm PST in San Francisco, CA). If you’re used to looking at birth charts through the lens of mainstream astrology, put that aside for now as we focus on a few salient testimonies using traditional methods.*
A planet that’s about to change signs or has just changed signs, resulting in a major loss or gain of essential dignity, is powered up with an agenda. Jobs has one such planet: Mars, at 29.05 Aires.
Mars is on the verge of losing major essential dignity as it leaves its own sign of Aries for Taurus, the sign of its detriment. Once this happens, its ability to do Mars stuff will plummet. It’s got to do Mars stuff now, while it still can! Mars signifies action and ardor. It's the planetary ruler of cardinal-fire sign Aries, signifying the creative impulses that lead us to break new ground. My favorite pop-culture phrase for Aries is ‘to boldly go where no man has gone before’ (from the original Star Trek TV series). This is precisely what Steve Jobs did for the field of information technology. To quote from Wikipedia:
[…] Jobs's official biographer, Walter Isaacson, described him as the "creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Jobs; boldface emphasis mine)
This doesn’t mean that everyone born with Mars in the last degree of Aries will be an innovator like Jobs. But such a planet in a person’s birth chart will be one key to their character, finding expression according to the context and conditions of that person’s life.
Moon on the Ascendant by antiscion
Jobs’s Moon is exactly conjunct his own Ascendant by antiscion. The Moon is one of the primary significators of ‘Me’. It’s placement on the ‘Me’ side of the chart makes the person hard-wired to put himself first; his own feelings and instincts will take priority. Jobs’s Moon is also in Aries, taking orders from his agenda-driven Mars. Both the Moon and Mars exalt the Sun, another significator of ‘Me’. Here we can begin to see how Jobs could be so confident in himself.
Mercury in station
A third key testimony is Lord 1/10, Mercury, in station in the middle of fixed Aquarius. Mercury’s not moving, and it disposes to Saturn, itself in a fixed sign. This strong dose of fixity helps explain Jobs’s determination and perseverance in the face of significant opposition and setbacks. You cannot sway him! The filmmakers did an excellent job of showing this particular quality throughout the movie.
'Reality distortion field'
One term referenced in the movie is Jobs’s so-called ‘reality distortion field’. Apparently, he had a way of seeing things the way he wanted to, against consensus. What in his chart might account for this? His Moon and Mercury get along well enough; Moon is in its sanguine phase, while Mercury is in a sanguine sign. But they have drastically different opinions about Saturn, the natural significator of reality. Mercury loves Saturn, but the the Moon hates it, and both the Moon and Mars take Saturn into fall by reception. It makes a certain sense, doesn’t it? Especially when we also consider the Moon’s antiscial position on the Ascendant (‘I'll see it my way').
I look forward to studying Jobs’s directed charts and sharing what I find here, in the next few posts. In the meantime, I recommend you see this movie!
To read about the movie and whether/how well it reflects Steve Jobs, the man:
To read about Steve Jobs on Wikipedia:
*Note: everything I know about astrology I learned from my teacher, John Frawley. Please visit his website, johnfrawley.com. Here's a link to his wonderful lecture series on natal astrology:
The photo above (and below) is by Loran, "My tribute to Steve Jobs, made of the top 1000 iOS apps icons." The second photo is by Ben Stanfield, "Steve Jobs at WWDC 2007" (cropped here by me). The third is by Camera Eye Photography and is a photo of the Walter Isaacson biography. All three are from Flickr and used under a Creative Commons license.