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The Door to His House of Spirituality Finally Opens

Back in the early 70s, sensitive Cancer Cat Stevens didn't seem very different from other sweet-voiced singer-songwriters of the time, like James Taylor and Elton John. The fantastic music of that era, such as Stevens' classic tunes "Wild World," "Father and Son" and "If You Want to Sing Out" (from the cult movie Harold and Maude) has certainly stood up.

But, the mellow mood of those post-hippie days certainly seems like an illusion in retrospect. James Taylor battled drug addiction and Elton John went on to become a glam rocker and fighter in the war against AIDS, while Cat Stevens became a sometimes mocked, sometimes bitterly-hated religious pariah to millions of his peace lovin' fans.

After declaring himself a Muslim, changing his name and going underground throughout the 80s and 90s, Cat Stevens has at last released a new record (mostly old stuff with a couple of new tunes), The Very Best of Cat Stevens, and is actually reaching out to his fans to promote it. Cat's chart reveals a man of mystery and contradiction, but like a real feline, if we get close enough without being too threatening, we can get some insights into this most unique creature.

Being Followed by a Moonshadow

Cat Stevens was born under the sign of Cancer, the soft crab with the tough outer shell. Cancer is ruled by the Moon, and is often associated with mother-like qualities. It is more traditionally "female" in its archetypal form and prefers intimacy and emotional happiness to the outer trappings of fame and success. Stevens’ Sun, which represents who he is in the world, is in the Tenth House of career success. Certainly, Stevens proved himself as a musician at a very young age. By his early 20s he was already rich and famous, selling millions of records and being played on the radio all the time.

Although his Sun in the Tenth House may have laid the groundwork for his rise to stardom, the sign Cancer is not at home in the Tenth House. Cancer is naturally associated with the Fourth House (representing home and family), which sits opposite the Tenth House. Nobody knows what Stevens was thinking when he was singing soft-rock classics like "Moonshadow" and "Two Fine People." Only he can say for sure, but his chart suggests that even then he felt a resistance to the commercial aspects of fame, which would take him away from the emotional parts of life that mattered to him.

The Moon in his chart is actually placed in the house where it is most comfortable, in the Fourth House. However, it is in the unconventional sign of Aquarius. Whatever Stevens' idea of home and family is, it's going to be controversial—to other people. To him, departure from being a mega pop star who can support his family with revenue from his music might not be as important as following a more non-traditional path (Aquarius is the sign of unconventionality). Perhaps he felt it was better to follow his own integrity than to continue on like a cog in a capitalist machine. Perhaps he believed he was nurturing his fans/followers by showing them that spirituality was more important thansilly love songs” (to quote another anthem of that era).

Public Transformation

Still, jumping back to his Tenth House of career, Stevens had a few lessons of his own to learn—not just to teach. He has Pluto, the volatile planet of self-transformation, also in the Tenth, in Leo, the sign of the naive innocent, the performer and the drama queen !

Stevens surely must have been shocked when his fans "turned" on him time and time again for his religious convictions. (Most notably when he was publicly vilified for saying Salman Rushdie should die for writing The Satanic Verses (he later said he was quoted out of context). Pluto in showy Leo in the very public Tenth House virtually guarantees that Stevens would have to go through his intensely personal transformation in a very public way.

Come on The Peace Train: Libra Planets

Stevens has a lot of strong Libra planets in his chart. Libra is the sign associated with the search for balance and harmony. He has Libra rising, which gives him the gentle appearance we saw in the 70s. He also has Neptune (often a planet of creativity, illusion and confusion) in his First House of self. Cat probably sees himself as a peace loving man, but the "shadow" side of his nature is the opposite sign of Libra—Aries, ruled by Mars, the warrior planet. With dreamy but sometimes confusing Neptune in his First House, Cat probably doesn’t understand how others perceive him, or he may have a difficult time projecting the image of himself he feels is most true. It’s possible he doesn't realize why fans have been so offended by his extreme behavior. He might see himself as extremely balanced.

Finally the musician's Mars (action) is in Libra in his Twelfth House of spirituality. If his "karma" is to fight spiritual battles that ultimately end in peace (Libra), he's probably on the right train. Unfortunately, because his Mercury (planet of communication) makes a square (challenging aspect) to his peace-loving Libra planets, he's got to work a lot harder at communicating who the real Cat Stevens is, and what he stands for.

The first major solar eclipse in Cancer in quite some time just occurred on July 1, 2000. It was conjunct Cat's Mercury (communcation) in Cancer at the top of his chart (his relationship with the public) in his philosophical Ninth House. Could it be that Cat's dogma days are over? This eclipse, which signifies a new emotional cycle for Cat, combined with the fact that lucky, open-minded Jupiter also began traveling through his Ninth House this summer, bodes well for a kinder, gentler and clearer Cat. After a dark period in his life, perhaps morning has broken at last for this 70s icon.



Jill Dearman is the author of the gay best sellers Queer Astrology For Men and Queer Astrology For Women (St. Martins Griffin/1999). She has been professionally practicing astrology for twelve years and currently writes horoscopes for the national magazines Twist and Girlfriends as well as numerous papers syndicated via Q Syndicate. She has written about subjects from astrology to literature to film and theater in Mademoiselle, Publishers Weekly and HX. An excerpt from her upcoming novel, The Great Bravura, was featured in Best Lesbian Erotica 2000(Cleis Press). She also writes and produces films. The Village Voice called Dearman a "risk surfing playwright" whose work "shocks and rocks." She is a 1999/2000 artist in residence at HERE in New York City.

Jill is also the author of LoveCycles, an email-delivered guide to love and relationships based on individual birth data, available in the Shop@StarIQ.

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Other StarIQ articles by Jill Dearman:

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  • Kate Winslet's Passionate Choices   12/29/2000
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  • Bounce Star Ben Affleck: The Ball is in His Court   12/1/2000
  • Charlie's Angels: Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz and Lucy Liu   11/25/2000
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  • Harrison and Michelle: A Return to Classic Hollywood   9/8/2000
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  • Rupert Everett: The Ultimate Gemini   7/7/2000
  • Angelina and Billy Bob: Hollywood's Mod, Odd Couple   6/30/2000
  • The Virgin Suicides: New Hollywood Meets Old Hollywood   6/2/2000
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