At the age of 42 Chaz Bono has joined the cast of the television program “Dancing with the Stars” – an event which has caused widespread controversy and brought his recent gender reassignment surgery into the forefront of the news.
Update: Astrotheme has a 12:55 am birth time for Chaz Bono which has been identified as part of the Steinbrecher collection which is highly reliable. I’ve edited the article to add some information based on this time of birth.
When you start to pay attention you will be amazed at how many newsmakers are in key astrological cycles. 28-29: the Saturn return. 41-42: the Uranus opposition. So without even looking at Bono’s chart we can see that he is in the middle of a dramatic life cycle, the Uranus opposition, that inspires a radical departure from anything in his life where he is not feeling true to himself.
Chaz Bono was born as a woman named Chastity Sun Bono March 4, 1969 (time unknown) in Los Angeles, California. His Sun is in Pisces, the sign of the shapeshifter – the one who yearns for peace, tranquility, and beauty. Pisces is the most mutable of the water signs and like water, it tends to adapt to fit the container in which it finds itself. This sometimes makes it more difficult for Pisces Sun people to know with certainty who they really are.
Bono, a former lesbian, says she realized she was gay at puberty and came out to her parents at the age of 18. I have written about the effect of Uranus in the chart in gender issues, and here we see a tight conjunction of Jupiter (representing our search for meaning) conjunct Uranus (liberation and freedom from judgment) closely aligned to his Libra South Node, suggesting that these gender issues are something that he struggled with in the past, perhaps in past lives. The combination of Jupiter and Uranus are often found in the charts of social activists, and Bono has become a highly vocal spokesperson for the GLBT community.
The South Node system falls in the tenth house of public life in the chart, so it’s not surprising that his struggle to find his identity has played out in the public eye. As one of my readers pointed out, Black Moon Lilith (which I am just beginning to study) is located in the seventh house of partnership and in a nearly exact square to the lunar nodes. From what I can tell so far from what I’ve read, the Black Moon deals with primal issues of rage and abandonment, and with such a powerful story expanding the meaning of the nodal journey we would expect a vivid past life history of rage and abuse that is determined to be resolved this time around.
Interestingly, that Jupiter/Uranus/ South Node combination culminated by progression in 1987-1992 which corresponds to the period during which he came out to his parents (1987) and then was outed by a tabloid (1990). This fits right into the notion that there is a karmic connection at play with Bono’s gender identity evolution.
Opposing that system at the South Node is a conjunction of Chiron (the planet of wounding, healing and teaching) to the Aries North Node, the point at which we find our future destiny. The polarity from Libra to Aries is all about moving from accommodating others (Libra) to becoming more self-oriented (Aries). It’s no wonder Bono has made it his mission to educate the public about gender issues and with Chiron present, this helps him to heal his own wounds as well.
Those wounds are probably substantial, since his Virgo Moon (emotional needs) is widely conjunct Pluto, the planet of death, destruction and regeneration. Although the conjunction is wide, Pluto sits right on the Midheaven of the chart where it becomes more powerful and a huge part of Bono’s outer experience. The need to have a powerful effect in the world is crucial with a Pluto/Midheaven alignment such as this.
Moon/Pluto people feel everything intensely and somewhat obsessively, and with that Moon in Virgo the Virgoan need for order and routine is often threatened by outside forces. One can imagine that Bono’s early life as a child of successful Hollywood entertainers in the early 1970s would have been anything but routine. Just after Bono’s birth his parents started filming the movie “Charity,” which failed and resulted in their return to Las Vegas clubs. One can imagine that this kind of life would not have provided the kind of order and stability that the Virgo Moon requires.
Venus is the planet that describes the way we relate to others, and Bono’s Venus is in Aries, the sign of self-orientation. Where Pisces is a more feminine (yin/receptive) sign, Aries is a masculine (yang/assertive) sign, and this sets up a dissonance between the masculine and feminine side of the personality. Not that this combination would always suggest a transgendered person, but there is generally always a need to balance the masculine and feminine. Bono’s Venus is conjoined by Saturn, planet of restriction and self-doubt which reveals insecurities around relationships and one’s own attractiveness, both areas ruled by Venus.
Another factor at work in 1990 when Bono’s sexuality became tabloid fodder was a challenging transit of both Saturn (testing) and Chiron (healing of wounds) to that natal Venus/Saturn combination. This must have been an extremely difficult time navigating through the minefields of sexual identity, something that is very difficult for any young adult much less a transgendered person in the public eye.
Bono has struggled with weight issues throughout his life. Leaving aside the obvious impact of Cher’s own body image issues, we can see in his chart the lack of emotional outlet (the chart lacks water, the element of feeling, other than the Pisces Sun) for the huge complex of emotions that the Moon/Pluto conjunction creates. In addition, the sensitivity of the Pisces Sun can create a need to build a buffer against the impact of the world in someone with these kinds of issues.
In the spring of 2006 Uranus transited his Sun. Uranus, remember, urges us to change our lives wherever we are not true to ourselves, and a Uranus transit to the Sun demands that we become as authentic as possible. This could have been the precursor to the decision to seek gender reassignment surgery which then began in mid-2008 when Uranus opposed his Moon.
Bono’s South Node planetary system (Jupiter, Uranus and the South Node) is at 1-3 degrees Libra, so it has been hit hard since early 2008 by the big Cardinal Drama that has been at work between 2008 and 2011. Beginning with Pluto, then Saturn, then Jupiter and then Uranus, there has been a great deal of planetary pressure on Bono to find his way towards his destiny as represented by the Nodes of the Moon.
The Uranus Opposition began in the spring of 2011 with the release of the film Becoming Chaz about the gender reassignment surgery. The second phase of the opposition occurs in mid to late September just as “Dancing with the Stars” begins the new season. The publicity around his selection as a contestant has stirred up intense controversy and fear among parents who would rather these gender identification issues remain in the closet.
As I wrote in the article cited above, “the more radical societal changes become the stronger the backlash of conservatives who fear this kind of extreme alteration to their world view. This is part of what we will be seeing over the next four years as Uranus squares Pluto and takes us deeper into the Aquarian Age.”
And as Chaz Bono says about the criticism, “”You know, it just kind of shows why for me it’s important to be on the show, because so little still is known about what it means to be transgender. And there’s so many just completely inaccurate stereotypes and thoughts that people have.”
And as the entire GLBT community says, “We’re here, we’re queer: Get over it.”