Astrologer Wendy Stacey


Unaspected Planets

An unaspected planet can be considered one of the major planets of focus within the birth chart.  It is when a planet makes no major aspects to any other planets in the chart.  It stands alone and because it has no contact (by aspect) to any other planets, it acts independently and struggles to integrate with other aspects of the individual’s personality.  Thus, it is a part of the personality which is not bound or influenced by the matrix of the horoscope in the same way that all the other planets are. 

When a person’s planet aspects the Moon, it becomes involved in how the person feels.  When it aspects one of the personal planets, it becomes involved in how this person functions on a physical level and day to day basis.  When a planet aspects social and outer planets, it gives meaning and social consciousness and reflects our place in the larger sphere of things.  When a planet does not contact any of the other planets by major aspect, it ignores (and is ignored by) these other facets that play together in contributing to making up whom we are.

The planet can become difficult to relate to by the person who has it unaspected and by others, due to its inability to integrate – it is difficult for this planet to form a relationship or relate to any other planets in the chart, let alone anybody else’s, as it does not know how.  Due to the lack of connection to other planets, it is not equipped with the skills and mechanism to ‘work through’ normal processes in the way other aspected planets can.  It is immature and raw.  

Moderation of this planet can often be the hardest challenge for the person who has it, particularly at a young age. Because of this, the planet will usually behave in one of two ways.  Unaspected planets have a tendency to be either internalised or externalised – there is rarely any compromise.  This will also depend on the planet involved and how it is more comfortable behaving. When the planet is internalised, it basically hibernates.  The planet is not acted out and exists with little or no expression.  The other way in which it behaves (and more common in my experience) is that it seeks to extend itself, searching for connection and integration, yearning for meaning and understanding.  It is a primal part of the personality that is released untainted and naively in the most purest expression of the planet in its sign and house with the need to feel whole or complete.  It is often not understood until later in life, until the adult can be fully aware of its dynamic.

I know a child who, when she was three, was diagnosed with hyperactive disorder.  She was highly aggressive, bossy and considered a bully and terror by many other parents.  She had an unaspected Mars and her anger was continuously acted out on others.  She had been to doctors and specialists who advised medication to ‘suppress’ the unsociable rampant energy of this three year old. Instead, her parents enrolled her in a variety of activities to help find some healthy way for her to express her anger and enormous amounts of energy.  The girl (now a young woman) is now a committed martial arts competitor and outstanding athlete.  Interestingly, her boyfriend has many planets in his natal chart that make both harmonious and difficult aspects to her Mars!  She has found a way to integrate this perceived wild Mars through the synastry with her partner.  This is not ideal for everybody, but it appears she has found great comfort and understanding (to and from) these connections with another person.

Another example of an unaspected planet is Jimi Hendrix.  He had Mars in Scorpio in the 10th house.  Besides a semi square to Neptune, Mars does not make any aspect to any other planets in his chart.   Hendrix became a legend in rock n roll with his ingenious electric guitar playing which had a major influence on the development of rock n roll from the late 60s.  As we can see from his chart, his stellium of Mercury, Sun and Venus in Sagittarius opposite Uranus and Saturn in Gemini play out his rebellious performances people were seeking in his time which smashed boundaries.

However, Hendrix’s reputation of breaking out and testing the boundaries with life can also be identified in the unaspected Mars in Scorpio.  Hendrix was a paratrooper in the US Army for four years in his early adulthood; he experimented with various drugs throughout his life and saw himself as wild and uncontainable and was renowned for burning his guitar or stage.  He was an adrenalin junkie.  He said he always felt that the biggest rush was on stage performing and that he was addicted to it.  He needed to act out, unleash the fire that burned within, which often resulted in behaviour which was self destructive.  Quotes from Hendrix sum up this unaspected Mars:

“I believe everybody should have a room where they get rid of all their releases. So my room was a stage”

“I didn't know it was anger until they told me that it was, you know, with the destruction and all that”

Hendrix’s image by Rolling Stone has been summed up as...” the psychedelic voodoo child conjuring uncontrollable forces is a rock archetype” - a rather interesting and appropriate description of a famous unaspected Mars in Scorpio.

The actress Uma Thurman, who was born in Mexico to a Swedish/German mother and American father, is another example.  Her father was a professor of Buddhism and extremely well connected (her parents were introduced to each other by Salvador Dali and their home in India was frequently visited by the Dali Lama).  She was raised Buddhist and her early childhood years appear to be dominated by religious doctrine and a necessity for good education. 

Besides a conjunction to the Sun, and sesqui-quadrate to Pluto, Thurman’s Saturn is unaspected in her chart.  The only other aspect the Sun makes is a quincunx to Uranus.  As these aspects are not considered ‘major’ it would be reasonable to interpret the Sun/Saturn conjunction as two unaspected planets.  The Sun and Saturn are in Taurus in the 9th house. 

Sun conjunct Saturn speaks ‘I am not seen’.  When this is in Taurus, it involves the body and self value.  As a child it was not that she was ignored, she was actually ridiculed for having unusual facial features, being gangly and big-footed.  As her family moved around a lot, Thurman was continuously put in new situations and was constantly ridiculed by other children. She lived her childhood feeling she was very ugly, alone and socially inept.  There are other points in the chart that could confirm this as well but this is very much an uncontrolled and internalised experience, depicted by this configuration. Being in the 9th house, Thurman’s religious, cultural and educational experience is one that she never felt connected to and rejected later in life in her pursuit of exploring ‘who she wanted to become’ (Sun/Saturn).  She left boarding school at the age of 15 and no longer practices Buddhism.  

 In this case, Thurman’s expression of her unaspected Sun/Saturn became introverted and resulted in major health issues. Thurman was diagnosed with Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD), which is when a person is heavily critical of their self image and physique and believes the body to be distorted.  People with this disorder find it difficult to look in the mirror and will try hard not to socialise with others for fear of being mocked.   This is an interesting depiction of these unaspected planets and shows the difficulty in connecting to the rest of the chart. This stand alone set of planets yearns to be recognised and resolve the ‘who am I’ and ‘what can I be’ dilemmas which are forever carried like an anchor of heavy burden. 

Although highly ambitious, it was inconceivable for Thurman to see herself as the beauty icon and Oscar-nominated actress for which she is revered for today.

Sun/Saturn has a desperate need to be older, more mature, to be wiser and more complete.  The quote from Thurman sums this up well.
“I was an escapee of childhood. I always wanted to grow up”

Hamaker-Zondag, Karen (2000) The Yod Book. Samuel Weiser, Maine.
Taylor, Carol (2003) Talk on Unaspected Planets. AA Conference, York
Tompkins, Sue (2006) The Contemporary Astrologer’s Handbook:
An In Depth Guide to Interpreting your Horoscope
. Flare Publications, London

Data Source:  Clifford Data, both sources AA rating
Jimi Hendrix,  27 11 1942, 10.15 Seattle, Washington, +7:00 24 Sag rising
Uma Thurman, 29 04 1970, 13:51, Boston Masachhusetts +4:00 01 Virgo rising

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Pop Divas, Vocal Range and Whistle Tones
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Unaspected Planets
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The Oscars and Golden Globes
Various websites

Quick Tips - Interpreting the Yod
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Quick Tips for Beginners - Introduction to Synastry
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Correct birth time
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The Property Market, Boom, Bust or Change
The International Journal of the Astrological
Association of Great Britain

Volume 44, January/February 2001

All Black Defeat
Journal of the Seasons
Volume 98, 22 December 1999

Electing a moment in time
The Astrological Journal
July 2007

Caesarean Births article
The Astrological journal
Jan 2001 and NZ

My Planets and Me, The Astrological chart of a new born
Families West Magazine
Issue 24, April 1998