Black Moon Lilith
The Comedians’ Muse
Lilith in Aries – promotes originality, inventiveness, and humorous new ways of looking at current issues. The style tends to be an in-your-face boldness that challenges authority. Harmonious aspects enhance the courage and self-confidence to make off-the-wall comments, while remaining within accepted social norms. Stressful aspects can lead the sense of humor over the edge, to the point where it becomes reckless, offensive, or belligerent and not funny.
Lilith in Cancer – can make family bonds complex with uncomfortable volatility and undercurrents. At its best, Lilith here leads one away from emotional dependencies into an internal clarity, to feeling at home in one’s own skin. Otherwise, this placement readily imprints chaotic family dynamics, which in turn, influences the professional life and adult relationship patterns. Lilith forces one out of a comfort zone in order to become more independent.
The material here is excerpted from the July 2013 issue of Dell Horoscope
Lilith in Taurus – connects with the stuff of life – the traditions, memories, responsibilities and attachments to people and things. Lilith here is alert to sexual innuendos, giving a crude sense of humor under stressful aspects, or evoking light-hearted amusement if well-aspected. This placement often weighs in on the haves and have-nots, and can make good use of props and gadgets. At her best, Lilith here offers endurance and a legacy.
Jay Leno (April 28, 1950; 2:03 am; New Rochelle, NY) was born with his Sun conjunct Lilith in Taurus, so that he personifies Lilith in this sign. His long-standing gig as the host of The Tonight Show is an elegant reflection of the tradition, endurance and legacy associated with this placement. Fortunately for him, his Saturn forms a trine to his Sun-Lilith, allowing
Leno’s Sun-Lilith is also shaped by a square to Pluto, which intensifies his need to succeed as a comic. Sun-Lilith square Pluto turned him into a workaholic, obsessive about being funny every waking minute. As long as he’s been doing The Tonight Show, Leno has been going to Las Vegas and other venues every weekend to perform stand-up comedy. He says he sleeps only 4-5 hours a night.
In fixed signs, the endurance side of this combination is underscored, but when change does come, it can be traumatic and/or deeply transformative. Leno made his first appearance on The Tonight Show on March 2, 1977. At the time, transiting Saturn was in Leo, nearing his Pluto, and only 1/2º from squaring his Lilith. Saturn was testing his ability to make people laugh. A concurrent Jupiter-Lilith transit allowed him to pull it off, since this happy combo conjoined his Mercury.
Over the following decade, his progressed Lilith would square his Pluto. This aspect was exact in 1987 when he became Johnny Carson’s permanent guest host. David Letterman, who’s Late Night Show followed Carson at the 11:30 pm slot, was led to believe that he would be Carson’s successor, but on June 6, 1991, NBC announced that that honor would go to Leno. At the time, Leno’s progressed Lilith and progressed Pluto were nearly exactly square (orb: 0º14’), which left some bitter feelings. Letterman took his show to CBS to do head-to-head battle in the ratings game.
him to joke endlessly about patriarchal foibles and folks’ amusing encounters with the stuff of life.
Richard Pryor (December 1, 1940; 1:02 pm; Peoria, IL) was born with his Sagittarius Sun sesquisquare (135º) Lilith in Aries, which bestowed a natural comedian’s touch to help him overcome extremely challenging environmental influences. His Mars-Saturn opposition describes the brutality around him, which often slipped into his stand-up comedy routines.
Lilith’s closest aspect is a quincunx to Mercury in Scorpio, which gave him an exceptionally sharp and poisonous tongue. His jokes were often filled with vulgarities and racial slurs, yet he reached his audiences with great story-telling and keen observations. With the mean-spirited Mars-Saturn aspect deeply imprinted into his psyche, Pryor had trouble freely expressing his humorous side, which often gave him performance anxiety.
As befits the pioneering nature of Lilith in Aries, he was the first to say “nigger” in public and make people laugh when he said it. And he did it over and over again, which helped defuse a racially sensitive epithet. Eventually he became recognized as one of the most important and influential stand-up comedians of the 20th century. Bill Cosby noted that “Richard Pryor drew the line between comedy and tragedy as thin as one could paint it.”
Self-inflicted tragedy came to Pryor on June 9, 1980 when in a state of drug-induced psychosis, he poured high-proof rum over his body and then set himself on fire. When looking at the traditional astrological indicators on this date, virtually nothing stands out that might be correlated with such an incident.
But when you factor in Lilith, it all makes sense. Transiting Pluto opposed his Lilith, while his progressed Mercury and Sun in Capricorn squared Lilith – all with orbs of less than ½ degree. An outer planet transit and primary progressions to Lilith were the activating celestial agents. The progressed Capricorn planets owe their allegiance to Saturn, and Pryor was evidently having a problem reconciling his professional success with his feisty independence. Two years later he explained that the incident was caused by dunking a cookie into pasteurized milk which caused an explosion.
Lilith in Gemini – awakens the trickster side of the psyche, which can enhance storytelling, wordplay, and the irony of paradoxes. This placement gives a curious, quick, and inventive mind, and a writer’s or speaker’s love of language. Favorably aspected, it’s highly adaptable and capable of spontaneous insights and commentary. Under stress, Lilith here divides the mind and heart, and can lead to depression, scattered mental energies, and dark deceptions or delusions.
Mark Twain (November 30, 1835; 4:45 am; Florida, MO) was born with his Sagittarius Sun opposite Lilith, a polarity which is auspiciously aligned with the two Royal Stars, Antares and Aldebaran. Lilith is also conjunct the U.S. Uranus, so that all together, this configuration inherently promises great success as an American celebrity writer.
Twain’s Sun is energized by a conjunction with Mars and a trine to a Moon-Pluto conjunction in Aries. These physically and mentally empowering placements propelled him into numerous occupations, but he floundered in them all before settling on a career as a humorist. His tall tale “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” was published on November 18, 1865 and brought him national recognition.
At the time, transiting Saturn was just past its natal position and forming a quincunx to natal Lilith. The Saturn-to-Lilith connection is a test of his humor, and he hit the jackpot. Saturn was nearing his Scorpio Ascendant, and he assumed his new identity as a humorist. The sudden fame was shown by transiting Lilith trine natal Uranus.
Twain’s Sun-Mars conjunction is located in the 2nd house of money, with Lilith sitting right on the 8th house cusp – the house of other people’s money, debts, and inheritance. Twain married a wealthy woman, and for most of his life he was preoccupied with making a fortune. He tried his hand at creating get-rich-quick technological devices. In the 1880s, he went heavily into debt on these projects and a publishing house, also investing his wife’s inheritance.
Twain was forced to declare bankruptcy on April 18, 1894. The slide into this financial hole took several years to reach this nadir, but is evident by the transiting Neptune-Pluto conjunction on his 8th house Lilith. The bottom was hit as his progressed Moon and Lilith conjoined each other while opposing his natal Mars. Twain went on a well-paid, worldwide speaking tour to pay off his debts, eventually winning acclaim as an American hero for doing exactly that.
Peter Sellers (September 8, 1925; 6:00 am; Southsea, UK) was born with his Lilith in the last degree of Cancer where it conjoins Ceres, the asteroid associated with the parent-child relationship. Lilith is closely octile (45º) the Sun in Virgo, and sextile the Gemini Midheaven, creating a comedic bridge between his ego and career point (MC).
Sellers learned his stagecraft from his parents, who were both entertainers. However, his father told him that his talents were best suited for being a road sweeper, while his mother encouraged him every step of the way. The Lilith-Ceres conjunction reflects the unnaturally close relationship with his mother, which lasted well into his adult life. Throughout his career, he satirized authority figures, like the bumbling Inspector Clouseau in The Pink Panther, or the psychotic nuclear scientist in Dr. Strangelove. Psychologically, he was getting revenge for his father’s disapproval.
On February 3, 1951, Sellers submitted a demo video entitled The Goons to the BBC, which accepted it and kicked off Sellers’ stellar career as a comedian. The Goon Show ran through 1960, eventually reaching an audience of 7 million. This turning point arrived as his progressed Moon and Ascendant were both closely aspecting his natal Lilith. Transiting Lilith was in his 10th house where it conjoined his Pallas and squared his Sun.
Sellers’ personal and professional relationships were often tumultuous. His second marriage to Swedish actress Britt Ekland on February 14, 1964 took place only ten days after they met. Transiting Uranus on his Ascendant can be blamed for this rushed affair, this love at first sight that turned him into a jealous, neurotic addict. But also at this time, a transiting Sun-Mars conjunction was exactly quincunx his Lilith, indicating that his Inner Wild Woman was being awakened.
The karmic nature of their volatile union is also apparent from progressed Lilith, which was now exactly conjunct his North Node. They divorced four years later. Critics describe Sellers as Britain’s best comic since Charlie Chaplin, yet he never found that emotionally distilled, calm center within. He died of a heart attack at the age of 54.
Lilith in Leo – thrives on entertainment, basking in the glow of an appreciative audience, and inspiring evermore playfulness and heartfelt creativity. The Inner Child and various sub-personalities emerge with this placement, providing for a wealth of amusing scenarios and impressions. A strong Saturn complex can undermine this otherwise extroverted talent, stifling potential or fostering overblown dramas. Lilith here can be a loose cannon, and flamboyantly bucks authority with panache.
Groucho Marx (October 2, 1890; 8:35 am; New York, NY) was born with Lilith in Leo right on the Midheaven, the career point. As a child, this elevated position signifies the strong influence of a parent, which in Groucho’s case was his mother. Her ambition for her sons was to be in the entertainment business, and she organized the brothers into a vaudeville singing act.
Groucho’s Libra Sun trines Jupiter in the 3rd house, providing him with three wonderful siblings and a zany, extroverted personality. Not until the Marx brothers tried their hand at comedy did the act succeed, and they went on to make 13 feature films together, each and every one a classic.
Lilith’s closest aspect is an octile (45º) to a retrograde Mercury. Mercury’s wit is increased tremendously by its involvement in an Air Grand Trine, while the retrograde allows him to think and express himself outside the box. Mercury and Lililth both form hard aspects to Mars, giving his sense of humor an aggressive punch expressed as one-line zingers.
By the late 1940s, Groucho was scheduled to do an interview with Bob Hope on radio’s Walgreen Hour, but Hope was late and Groucho had to wait 40 minutes in the green room. When he was finally introduced, he unleveled some nasty comments and went way off-script – all while keeping the audience in stitches.
The date of the Hope-Marx ad lib showdown was March 27, 1947, and transiting Lilith was right on Groucho’s Mars, spurring him into a battle of wits. Also, transiting Uranus was perfectly sextile his natal Lilith and he had a progressed Moon-Lilith sextile. A well-known producer liked what he heard, and offered Groucho his own radio show, a quiz show where he could ad lib to his heart’s content.
The show, You Bet Your Life, became an instant hit. It went to TV in 1950 when transiting Pluto was conjunct Groucho’s Lilith and also during a progressed Moon-Lilith conjunction. It became one of the longest-running TV shows.
Lilith in Virgo – presents a common sense style of humor that is analytical, but capable of an exaggerated, paranoid focus on details that gets blown out of proportion. Under stress, Lilith here can be a hypochondriac, worrying about every little thing. Psychosomatic illnesses can be claimed for humorous effect. Otherwise, this placement offers the opportunity to hone one’s skill, to develop humor as a craft, and fine-tune one’s technique.
Woody Allen (December 1, 1935; 5:54 am; Bronx, NY) is an example of a well-known comedian with a Sun-Saturn aspect. His Sagittarius Sun conjoins Mercury and Jupiter and all three square Saturn in Pisces.
This configuration alone tells us much about his style of humor, which ponders the meaning of life, its moral complexities, and its harshness. An example of his saturnine humor is this observation: “If you’re not failing every now and then, it’s a sign you’re not doing anything very innovative.”
But Lilith is also well-integrated into his chart. Notice he has a Venus-Mars-Pluto T-square, which readily translates into his social commentaries that feature intriguing relationship patterns, especially romantic triangles. Lilith at 25º Virgo fits right into this T-square since it’s closely sextile Pluto and trine Mars. As a muse for humor, Lilith here translates into a relentless psychoanalysis of his love life and one of his main techniques for expressing the absurdities of modern life.
Allen’s 1977 film Annie Hall marked a turning point in his career, as he moved away from farces and just clowning around. Annie Hall brought him three Oscars: Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay. In it, he humorously explores the psychological insecurities surrounding sex and love. The director said of this effort, “I think I will try and make some deeper film and not be as funny in the same way. And maybe there will be other values that emerge, that will be interesting or nourishing for the audience.”
Lilith was a powerful presence at the time of the film’s debut on April 20, 1977. Transiting Saturn and Uranus were squaring each other, and Allen’s Lilith was at their exact midpoint, so that she formed an octile (45º) to each outer planet. Transiting Lilith was conjunct Allen’s Midheaven.
Allen’s Saturn makes him keenly aware of what’s socially expected from sex and love, while Lilith is the Inner Wild Woman who feels no guilt or angst, regardless of what others might think or say. In this case, the combination is fascinating, hilarious, and insightful.
on this page... Black Moon Lilith in Aries through Virgo, each illustrated by a celebrity comedian with a prominent Lilith. To read about Lilith in Libra through Pisces, click here. Why should Lilith be an indicator for comedians? Read the original study here.
What's Lilith doing in your chart?
Email [email protected] for a personal reading that includes a look at Black Moon Lilith. Or visit readings for more information.