Please note: In 2015, long after I wrote this article, my understandings of the quindecile, a 24° aspect, were born out of the new–mathematically accurate–name for the 165° aspect, now called undecaquartisextile. Please read about the Undecaquartisextile as its related aspect patterns which can be found in the Pluto – Full On series. You’ll find the Pluto – Full On series under the subcategory of Undecaquartisextile, located in the Feature Articles tab. Thanks for your patience with the modification of the name.
I don’t remember the first time I heard his name. Theodore Bikel. Maybe it’s the Yiddish melodies or the Hebrew ones, perhaps it’s his starring roles in “The Sound of Music” and “Fiddler on the Roof,” but his name has surely been embedded in my memory for what has seemed like forever. I tend to associate him with “Fiddler” and yet he did not appear in the movie–and I never saw him on Broadway.
Fyvush & Theodore Bikel perform” Fiddler On The Roof” Oct 2003 (about 36 seconds of delay in this)
It wouldn’t be fair to gloss over his life. Theodore Bikel performed at least through 2009 and had been nominated for one of several awards as late as 2010. This man–in at least four languages!–probably touched each of our lives in a variety of ways even if you didn’t know his name.
Kisses Sweeter than Wine – Judy Collins and Theodore Bikel
He was on Broadway, TV and in movies, appearing in a slew of hits like “My Fair Lady,” “Law and Order,” “The Twilight Zone,” “Hawaii Five-O,” “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” and even on “Dynasty.” He danced at least once with an Oscar nomination and performed with Frank Sinatra, Sidney Poitier, Sophia Loren and countless others whose names are still high on the list of top celebs. And how many people have you ever heard of who could have said they had a song written expressly for him to sing in a Broadway show?
Edelweiss – Theodore Bikel in his role as Captain Georg von Trapp (“Sound of Music”)
An Eastern first quadrant below-the-horizon dominance might present something of an enigma to those who would expect an actor to be showy and even pompous in his approach to the world. But regardless of any first impressions you might have had of him, he was very conscious of Self and his role in life. The following quote from the Variety article particularly struck me:
“In his autobiography he addresses the key moral dilemma of his life: He did not return to Israel to fight in the 1948 War of Independence after departing to seek stage work: ‘A few of my contemporaries regarded what I did as a character flaw, if not a downright act of desertion. In me, there remains a small, still voice, that asks whether I can ever fully acquit myself in my own mind.’”
If ever a single comment could have reflected that first quadrant below-the -horizon emphasis, I think this was it. His Moon in Aries conjuncts his natal Ascendant. In the midst of a 30-minute partile conjunction to the current transit of Uranus–not so coincidentally shifting to apparent retrograde motion this week on July 26, the day after Venus shifts to retrograde–Bikel’s Moon also makes a wide opposite to natal Saturn and a wide square to Pluto. In all fairness to those astrologers who would question the wide aspects, while I’m quicker to point to my confident use of the wide orb to Saturn, the Ascendant-Moon-Chiron conjunction easily fits the square to Pluto. (I know, this is a first for me, isn’t it? It fits, as you’ll see.) Would I call these aspects with Saturn and Pluto a T-square? Probably not although, as an afterthought, natal Pluto is in Cancer, and his chart and the current transits reveal an angular T-square at the least, and a Grand Cardinal Cross from where I’m sitting.
His Moon also formed a lovely Grand Fire Trine with Neptune and Jupiter. But don’t make the mistake of thinking he was lazy. That’s just not a word anyone would have associated with his name. Again, his Moon opposition to Saturn comes to mind from this particular aspect creating the first Kite in the Grand Trine. It gave him the energy and the impetus to push forward in his life as he wanted to do. His Jupiter also forms an opposition to natal Venus, so that single Grand Fire Trine actually has two Kites, giving him the love of the work and the ability to put himself into the roles of each character he played through the ability to adapt himself through the communication at the same time he applied the strength of the role through conscientious observation of traits each character might have possessed. For him, this would seem to have been a self-imposed responsibility he saw as part of his job as an actor.
Through the Mars in Aquarius undecaquartisextile to Neptune in Leo, his creative expression represented the tool through which he could achieve recognition which was much of the focus of his life. Here, once again, David Cochrane‘s thoughts about Chiron come to mind since Chiron conjuncts both the Moon and the Ascendant and participates in the Grand Trine. David and I first discussed Chiron specifically as it related to musicians, and Theodore Bikel was every bit a musician, just as he was an actor who was deeply involved in his work. David described this musician-Chiron relationship as “charisma and sizzles in performances,” and clearly Bikel was all of that. So it shouldn’t come as any surprise then to see the ASC-Moon-Chiron conjunction, setting off that entire Grand Fire trine with Jupiter and Neptune also forming a trine to Chiron.
“’38. The Nazis came in in March of ’38. It took us fully six months before we were able to leave. I was 13 when they came. I was 14 when we left.”
A mutual reception of Mercury and Venus and Jupiter in its own sign formed the heartbeat of Bikel’s chart. Beyond his life and work, the heartbeat reveals the drive that ultimately earned him global recognition and brought him from Europe to the United States.
Pete Seeger, Theodore Bikel and Rashid Hussain singing “Hine Ma Tov” the Hebrew folk song in round, from Psalm 133, “Behold how good and pleasant it is for brothers and sisters to live together in unity,” contains the words all of us still need to learn.
Mercury conjuncts the second house cusp. Some would insist that isn’t true; if anything, this proves Mercury does indeed conjunct the second house cusp at least with Placidus houses. Perhaps Koch users would find a tighter orb to the second house, as they would need.
Nevertheless, the Sun-Mercury conjunction–because of Mercury’s conjunction to that second house cusp–links the first house Sun to the second house as well. Here, in the second house, we look for values of how much we earn through our work and other assets like paintings, jewelry and antiques, but also where we look for the self-worth enabling us to develop the Self we will present to the world on first impression. Here then, the undecaquartisextile between Saturn and the Sun becomes a powerful tool in understanding the undecaquartisextile as well as why Ego is set aside for self-validation and self-worth. He needed the appreciation of others through their ability to validate him. In turn, he was able to self-validate.
The Russian translation:
Golden rings and turquoise rings were rolling
Down the meadow and out of sight
Gone, like you, your lovely shoulders
Disappeared in the dark of the night
Then the rings fell in the far green meadow
And scattered like the love we once had known
No regrets and no more wishes
Life is sad now that I’m all alone
Sing, guitar, and cry away my sorrows
Take away the sadness my heart bears
No Regrets and no more wishes,
Love is gone
And I just don’t care
In the midst of the double Kite, the presence of these undecaquartisextiles offer perspectives not always coming to light as we examine charts like these. Perhaps in the chart of one who isn’t the consummate performer in both music and acting as well as his having been a public speaker whose knowledge and expertise related to world events like the Holocaust, we might not take as much notice. Theodore Bikel’s chart serves now as a legacy not only of the great man who was accomplished on so many levels, but also as an opportunity for such examination.
As such then, it bears sharing his words one more time: “A few of my contemporaries regarded what I did as a character flaw, if not a downright act of desertion. In me, there remains a small, still voice, that asks whether I can ever fully acquit myself in my own mind.”
And in reply, what better words than those of the last line in the Actors’ Equity Association statement, “We thank you, Theo, for all you have done.”
Namaste, I love you.
©2015 Michelle Young