The individual whose chart this is was diagnosed with Asperger’s Disorder (and nothing else.) I will be using her initials, LB, instead of her name. In her 40th year, because of ongoing depression, she killed herself. Here is some of the information on her provided by Astrodatabank:
American suicide and child of noted family… LB was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, a high functioning form of autism, following her premature birth in 1966. She spent the first three months of her life in an incubator. While growing up, her parents say she “lived a happy life…with lots of attention. As a teenager, LB spent nine years at…, a special psychiatric residential treatment facility for adolescents located in Minnesota.
Symptoms of Asperger’s Syndrome include obsessive-repetitive routines, the inability to have empathy or to look people straight in the eye. Sufferers also have difficulty understanding other people’s perspectives or viewpoints and often have very narrow interests. They can also have a sensitivity to sounds, smells and tastes. Even when their IQs are well above average, normal social interaction with the outside world remains limited. The cause of autism is not known, but it is considered a “spectrum disorder” because it affects different people in different ways. Asperger’s was not officially recognized as a syndrome until 1994.
LB and her family struggled with the developmental issues of the disease for decades and she managed to receive a solid education. She loved science, especially astronomy, looking through telescopes and geology. She studied geology at …University and with her father’s support, she managed to complete her degree. Unfortunately, she could not pursue a career in the field due to poor eyesight.
On January 4, 2007 came the shocking news that LB had taken her own life at age 40. A brief statement from her parents said only that “our only daughter has killed herself at her apartment in the suburb of …at about 8:00 pm.” ...Family spokesperson … was quoted in the media as saying LB “quietly and peacefully committed suicide to escape the ravages to her brain brought on by Asperger’s.” She went on to say “She loved kitties, earthquakes, glacial calving, meteor showers, science, blue skies, sunsets and Tahiti. She was one of the most beautiful creatures created on this earth and she is now in the white light, at peace.” [Her father] has three children from other marriages, while LB was the only child of [her mother].
[The family spokesperson’s] comment to the media concerning “ravages to the brain brought on by Asperger’s” has drawn heavy criticism from many organizations in the autism community. Their research shows that unlike Alzheimer’s Disease, which IS a degenerative disease of the brain, Asperger’s causes no such deterioration of the brain and is therefore not a reason in itself to commit suicide. They were appalled that such misinformation has been given to the media as an excuse for LB's suicide. Depression, brought on by decades of struggling with Asperger’s Syndrome is a far more likely motivator for suicide, they speculated…
I have written several other papers about suicide. Here are their links:
The Subway Suicide of a 9 Year Old Boy,
The Suicide of a 14 Year Old Girl, Vivienne,
The Late Life Suicide of Author and Concentration Camp Survivor, Primo Levi,
Search for Eric Douglas in the Paper on Homosexuality,
Search for "suicide" in the synastry paper of Michel and Francoise Gauquelin,
The Suicide of Chief of Naval Operations, Mike Boorda.
The Suicide of Carter Cooper.
And, of course, Eric Harris, though also a mass murderer, committed suicide. Here is the link to that paper: Paper on Eric Harris.
Before we can go any further, I should explain some things about this astrology.
This astrological method is not the traditional one. Indeed, it not traditional, period. True, it uses sidereal astrology, the predominant (traditional) astrology of the East. It also uses the Egyptian harmonic. Both are quite old. But, this method started with me in 1983. Its working rules were not inherited. They were uncovered gradually through years of research. As they were uncovered, a system which at first seemed too complex became almost too simple. Here are those rules:
Those interested in reading something about the difference between sidereal (“Eastern”) and tropical (“Western”) astrology can get some understanding from my paper on that subject:
The Sidereal and Tropical Zodiacs: A Discussion
The Home Page also contains information about this particular astrological approach. The background for its discovery, as well as an explanation of the Egyptian harmonic, are found in the paper on method:
About This Method
It is possible to read this paper without consulting any of those papers. The general understanding necessary to facilitate same are:
This approach uses both a birth and conception chart and they share the same axis. That means birth houses will overlap different houses of the conception chart. These are called house overlaps. Like paths, house overlaps play an important part in this astrology. Throughout this paper I use the convention when writing about house overlaps of putting the birth house first, then the conception house. So, for instance, a “5th/1st” overlap refers to an overlap of birth 5th house with conception 1st house in that order. A “9th/3rd” overlap has birth 9th house overlapping conception 3rd house. Birth house/conception house in that order.
Birth planets (including their harmonics) rule only birth houses. Conception planets (including their harmonics) rule only conception houses.
Only conjunctions, applying and separating squares, and oppositions are used. Planets so related to each other are referred to as “in the same set.” A set, then, is two or more planets (or an Angle) connected to each other through conjunction, square, and opposition within the defined orbs (2nd paragraph below). The set is more active if it contains a light, and less active without one. Learning to look in terms of “crosses” can be helpful in rapidly finding planets that are in the same set.
”Lights” include suns, moons, and moons nodes. When mercury rules an Angle, especially if it rules two Angles (Gemini and Virgo), it functions both as a light and a planet. For instance, when mercury rules B MC and B Asc and is in the same set with mars and saturn, that constitutes a lighted (by mercury) mars/saturn set with forefront influence (the two Angles). MC and Asc act similar to lights in the sense they enliven and empower the expression of any planet they are touching, but they are not really lights, and their orb is smaller than regular lights.
All planets in a set are lighted, then, when the set includes any of the following: an Angle, sun, moon, or moon’s node, and mercury when it rules at least one Angle.
Orbs for planets in sets with lights is 5°; without lights, about 2°. Orb for MC/planet or Asc/planet is 2°. Orb for progressed planet-to-Angle or vice versa is 1° and increases ½° - ¾° when a light is involved. If I could be certain each time of birth was absolutely correct, orbs could be established definitively because they are empirically derived.
In the paper on gurus I introduce the concept of path when speaking about an astrological set. Planets in a set, the houses they are in, and houses ruled by them describe an astrological path. If, for instance, planets in a set rule 4th, 5th and 9th houses, then the 4th, 5th, and 9th houses are inextricably connected to each other. Energy of learning as well as failure, determined by planets in the set, flows among those three houses. That connection between planets and houses is called their path. As can be seen, paths have profound implications.
Although the harmonic used for each chart is always 2 greater than the number of the chart, for ease in reading I have adopted the convention of writing the harmonic number the same as the chart number. For instance, “b12 mars” represents the harmonic of birth mars for the 12th chart (but the harmonic used to find b12 mars is the 14th).
In abbreviating, I use “b” for birth, “c” for conception, “p” for progressed, and “t” for transiting. A number following them, e.g., “3” or “7,” shows the harmonic chart we are examining. For instance, “b7 pluto” represents the harmonic of birth pluto for the 7th chart. “Pc3 mars” is the harmonic of progressed conception mars for the 3rd chart.
This method uses a solar return that occurs every 40 degrees (exactly) after birth up to death, with nine returns occurring annually.
The Main Significators for Autism
For comparison, I need to cite the results from the main and addendum papers on individuals diagnosed with autism. While there were some noted divergences in individual charts, they share a commonality described thus:
(1) Light/saturn/pluto (that is, a “set” containing light, saturn, and pluto conjunct, square, or opposition each other, see rules for reading this astrology, above) influencing an Angle and a 3rd house within the harmonic chart for the 1st house, also known as the 1st chart, of early childhood. Other planets may be in the set, but saturn and pluto must be and are defining. Other houses may turn out to be in the path, but for now they include only an Angle and 3rd house.
The 1st chart is the chart that best (but not exclusively) describes our early childhood, its identity, and its somatic consequences. The “autism ” set in this chart identifies that the “saturn/pluto” condition occurs during the earliest development (1st chart) of the individual. It may include information on brain dysfunction and injury.
(2) Light/saturn/pluto influencing an Angle and a 3rd house with the harmonic chart for the 3rd house, also known as the 3rd chart. Other planets may or may not be in the set, but saturn and pluto must be and are defining. Other houses may turn out to be in the path, but for now they include only an Angle and 3rd house.
The 3rd chart, as a harmonic enlargement of the 3rd house, gives us critical information on the individual’s mental traits and can also include information on brain dysfunction or injury..
Light/saturn/pluto, in the conditions stated above, appear to define what is usually diagnosed as autism. Their influence results in early (essentially quiet and non-anxious) withdrawal; intense fascination with certain physical objects or behaviors which puzzle others; normal, early growth of language skills followed by their loss several years later; lack of identification with humans which leads to failure to develop personality, and failure to grow emotionally.
For comparison to other charts, I have papers on individuals who showed preponderant saturn/pluto in charts other than the 1st and 3rd. One is the paper on the disappearing priest (link on Home Page). My own experience of excessive, forefront saturn/pluto occurred around age 60 and is described in the main paper on autism. Then there is the Asperger’s in this paper. All involve saturn/pluto preponderance, but in a different chart from those of autistic people. All three demonstrate excess of saturn/pluto in the 7th chart.
Admixtures of Other Disorders
In the papers on autism I point out that the diagnosis is likely contaminated with other disorders which can occur in early childhood. Just the fact that there are so many different symptom descriptions of children diagnosed autistic suggests this. In the medical community we have "Autistic Spectrum Disorder" (ASD) for autism and "Pervasive Developmental Disorder" (PDD)--diagnoses which cover a host manifestations. These suggest a continuum of some type of condition, but also that there may be other pathologies mixed in with the autism--if there is a "pure" form of autism. Those disorders and their astrological significators are discussed in the paper about Temple Grandin’s autism, under the headings Admixtures of Other Disorders and in the Conclusion.
The Main Significators Found in the One Chart for Asperger’s Disorder (Subject to Change)
There is a lighted saturn/pluto with influence to an Angle and 3rd house in the 7th chart. In this chart also the path includes the 3rd house within the chart. (If pluto were co-ruler of Scorpio, the 8th house would automatically be in the path. I discuss using mars and pluto as co-rulers of Scorpio in the Grandin paper, but historically have used only mars.
A word about the difference between a set containing a light and one containing an Angle:
I will not be showing a partial chart until we get to our Asperger’s individual’s 7th chart. For handy reference before that, therefore, her Angles are shown below :
Placidus: C MC—3 Virgo 23, c11—3 Lib, c12—27 Lib, C Asc—18 Scorpio 51, c2—21Sag, c3—28Cap
B MC—14 Scorpio 36, b11—7Sag, b12—1Cap, B Asc—1 Aquarius 46, b2—15Pis, b3—19Ari
We can now look at LB’s astrology for Asperger’s Syndrome.
LB, the 1st Chart of Childhood and Its Identity
I would show, as I usually do, a partial harmonic chart for the 1st house, but in LB’s case there is nothing to show! She not only does not have lighted saturn/pluto influence to a 3rd house within the chart and/or Angle, she does not even have saturn and pluto in the same set in the whole chart.
Looking for other types of affliction(which might identify things like retardation, schizophrenia, brain damage, etc.), her 1st chart does not contain any:
Both b and c 3rd houses receive influence from mars/uranus/uranus/pluto/pluto with two Angle rulers, but there is no light. Since it is not on and Angle and has no light, its influence is slight, but tending toward abstraction.
C 3rd house contains c saturn at 17 Aquarius 37 which is lighted by C Asc at 18 Scorpio 51. That gives her a lighted saturn in a 3rd house which includes an Angle. This is an all-charts phenomenon because saturn in non-harmonic.
C 3rd house is also influenced by the following set which does contain a light :
|b1 pluto||6 Aries 18|
|b1 uranus||6 Aries 56||ruler of B Asc in c 3rd house|
|b1 moon||7 Aries 02|
|c1 uranus||7 Aries 42||co-ruler (30 of 35°) of c 3rd house|
|c1 pluto||8 Aries 10|
Summed, then, we can state that her c 3rd house is influenced by lighted saturn (which includes the Angle) and by lighted pluto, which lacks an Angle. This appears somewhat autistic, but it would be the first time in all the charts that I have used a summed saturn plus pluto to identify autistic tendencies. In all the other charts, saturn and pluto are in the same set.
[ If pluto also ruled Scorpio, then the b1 and c1 pluto above would influence B MC and C Asc, respectively, and the set would influence two Angles. Then, summed, she would have lighted saturn influence to a 3rd and an Angle and lighted pluto influence to a 3rd house and two Angles.]
Summarizing, we have seen a 1st chart which is hardly afflicted at all. Her 3rd house saturn in the same set with C Asc is not really a 1st chart set because it occurs in all charts. It stands for a tendency to depression, certainly to seriousness and sober considerations. It also lowers her self-confidence because a forefront saturn consciousness does that (explanation of why is in the paper on clinical depression of William Styron, link on Home Page). She does have a summed set which, summed, can get us to a lighted saturn/pluto influence to Angles and 3rd houses. It could give her some tendency to autism, but if it does, it is much weaker than in “typical” charts of autistic people.
LB, the 3rd Chart of Mental Traits
Once again, I am not showing a drawing of a partial 3rd chart because LB’s 3rd chart does not contain any sets with saturn and pluto in the same set!
Nor does it contain any mars/saturn or mars/saturn/neptune sets.
She still has c saturn at 17 Aquarius 37 in c 3rd house lighted by C Asc at 18 Scorpio 51, giving her 3rd chart (and all charts) an Angle/3rd/saturn influence.
She has no other planets on Angles, but one very close to it which started its influence in her childhood and is also an all-charts phenomenon. She has b saturn at 5 Pisces 25R starting to oppose C MC at 3 Virgo 23. Since her suicide was apparently related to long-term depression, this set is significant. That saturn was progressing closer to her C MC throughout her life. It was at 4 Pisces 01R, 38’ from exact opposition to MC, when she died. That is close enough to be affecting C MC and sponsoring depression and isolation, especially since she started out with one saturn/Angle. Her progressed one gave her two. For saturn/Angle, two is excessive. Since progressing secondary saturn moves very slowly, it only reached exact opposition in July, 2016. And she still would have been under its influence for years after that, until it reach about 30’ beyond exact (as a guestimate).
I have never seen research on the effects of progressed secondary saturn, that is, (non-harmonic) saturn progressed to an Angle. It can be a major factor in death of the indiividual, whether by natural causes or suicide. But, individuals also can live through the years it takes to complete its set with an Angle. It is just, to my understanding, a very dark period.
Besides her two all-charts Angle/saturn sets, her 3rd chart contains astrology relevant to her problem with depression:
LB’s 3rd chart is not autistic. It shows depression.
Summarizing for her 1st and 3rd charts, LB’s 1st chart can be considered to be weakly autistic, if at all. Her 3rd chart is not at all autistic, but demonstrates problems with depression (saturn).
LB, the 7th Chart of Relations with Significant Others, Partnerships, and Marriage (Our Main Chart Because We Are Highly Social Beings)
The biographical data did not contain information on relationships like boy friends and girl friends. She was not married.
Placidus: c11—3 Lib, c12—27 Lib, c2—21Sag, c3—28Cap
b11—7Sag, b12—1Cap, b2—15Pis, b3—19Ari
Set (1) above can be seen two ways. The first five planets on the lower end of Aquarius (saturn, pluto, SN, uranus, moon) can be seen to be in the same set with C Asc, giving Asc/double light/saturn/pluto, with b7 uranus ruler B Asc in c 3rd house, and c saturn ruling c 3rd house. It has multiple influences to c 3rd house (by being in and also ruling) and influences two Angles.
We can drop out C Asc, and include the other planets in late Aquarius (c1 uranus and c1 pluto) and the two uranuses and plutos in Leo. The set is held together by the two lights, c7 node and b7 moon. This set influences B Asc through b7 uranus rulership. It influences c 3rd house three times (twice through rulers, once through the Aquarian planets in c 3rd house).
Either way we choose to view Set (1), it shows “autism” (lighted saturn/pluto with influence to an Angle and a 3rd hose) in the 7th chart, that is, in a chart not implying (or not nearly as strongly implying), as does the 1st chart, early childhood development.
All the Aquarian planets are in b 1st/ c 3rd houses. They started working early (in 1st house) in her interpersonal relations with other as well as her communication (3rd house). They did not preclude intellectual development because the 7th chart is not the site which shows most about early development.
Set (1) includes the moon, and worse, the south node. When planets are conjunct our South Nodes we are pulled toward that form of consciousness automatically. When a moon—which also tends to automatic consciousness, is also conjunct the South Node the tendency to fall into that form of consciousness is overwhelming. It indicates she had a very difficult, if not impossible, time steering clear of that form of consciousness. It started young, and kept her in bondage.
At the same time, it is necessary to point out that L.B’s suicide was not necessarily because of her Asperger’s condition. It was stated (from the quote above), “Depression, brought on by decades of struggling with Asperger’s Syndrome is a far more likely motivator for suicide, they speculated.” Because of her two Angle/saturn sets, she was fighting much more than just Asperger’s. She was fighting depression not brought on by her Asperger’s. That is, those sets would produce depression in any individual's chart, whether or not they had Asperger's syndrome.
Additional problems with interpersonal relationships would have been caused even by the sign her light/saturn/pluto planets were in. Aquarius is a rather abstract sign. People who want a really “personal” relationship have a hard time doing it with some one with strong Aquarius, who are not inclined to passion, possessiveness, or jealousy. Saturn/uranus/pluto in
Finally, it is intriguing that neither 8th house is part of the path of Set (1).
In the 1st and 3rd charts I am tentatively looking at adding the 8th house as part of the path. With LB’s unilateral diagnosis of Asperger’s syndrome, the implication is that the saturn/pluto set does not have to influence the 8th house to spoil emotional connection. Her potential for emotional connection in her 7th chart was wiped out by the very abstract and isolating planets in Aquarius which were simultaneously in her 1st house (individual identity) and 3rd house (thinking patterns).
One cannot come to much of a conclusion with just one chart. But, still, that one chart shows an astrology which makes sense of a diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome. It makes sense of the fact that such individuals are able to develop intellectually, but not emotionally.
When light/saturn/pluto is in the same set and influencing an Angle in any chart it has profound implications. But it is easy to see that occurring in charts which describes childhood, brain function, and mentality, it could have more global effects on the individual than it does occurring in the later, 7th chart. Not that Asperger’s is not a global effect, but it does allow the individual intellectual development and other forms of autonomy.
As is obvious, it would be easier to come to firmer conclusions had I more than one chart of an Asperger’s individual.
Contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org