"You must not fear, hold back, count or be a miser with your thoughts and feelings. It is also true that creation comes from an overflow, so you have to learn to intake, to imbibe, to receive,to nourish yourself, and not be afraid of fullness. The fullness is like a tidal wave which then carries you,sweeps you into experience and into writing."
French-born writer Anaïs Nin had very strong Pisces signatures in her birth chart -- a Pisces stellium, Jupiter in Pisces, Neptune conjunct the Midheaven...
She was born on February 21, 1903 in Paris, France at 8:25 Pm, to Spanish composer Joaquin Nin and Cuban singer Rosa Culmel.
She came in with such strong Pisces signatures that it really is no wonder she spent her entire life trying to find her "Self." She is most famously known for her life-long journey of self-discovery that she documented (er, fabricated?) in the pages of her diary-- 15 volumes of which have been published to date.
Though she did publish works that were critically acclaimed (fiction and erotica,) fans continue to flock to her personal diaries as a source of inspiration.
Pisces is all about SOUL GROWTH and Anaïs Nin, to me, is the Quintessential Pisces because she left us a body of work (Neptune on the MC) that tracks her personal growth and development over the expanse of her life.
(This could also be a manifestation of that mutable T-Square across cadent houses--the compulsion to create a world of her imagination within the safety of her diary. But I'm get ahead of myself here...)
Nin's father abandoned the family when she was 11. When it became clear he was gone for good, Nin's mother moved her family from their home in France to America. This impacted Nin's psyche in a very big way and it is said she spent the rest of her life trying to attain her father's lost affection. First by writing him letters and later, through her multiple affairs.
She began keeping the diary in 1915, at the age of 12. Nin's analyst said the diary was merely her attempt at writing a love letter to her father. We see this as a manifestation of her Mercury (writing)/ Saturn (father/ authority figures)/ 4th House (family, home, comfort) complex, but also... Anaïs's chart features a combust Jupiter.
A combustion is when a planet is in a very close conjunction to the sun (in Jupiter's case, within 11°) and is "hidden" from plain sight. The combustion has a weakening effect on the planet in question, as if the sun "burns away" the planet's power and the combustion gives power to other stronger planetary influences aspecting the planet in question. For Jupiter, a planet normally associated with abundance and good luck, this aspect is said to instead be a marker for self-obsession, a weakened sense of morals and more challenges than lucky breaks.
As the sun and Jupiter both also represent the father, this aspect denotes an early childhood experience where the father was either too busy to give attention or was simply unavailable.
This combustion seems to have created a life-long lesson or overarching theme of "daddy issues," which manifested in the compulsion to remedy her sense of lost love and affection through her multiple affairs with older men.
This Jupiter combustion in her 5th house of sex also gives Nin a hefty sexual appetite and an over-identification with sex, drama and romance. There is a minor aspect to Mars (ruler of sexual activity) and North Node, in her First house, which tells us that her sexual partnerships would figure into her quest for "Identity" in an almost fated way.
Another key aspect in Nin's chart is that mutable T-Square across cadent houses. Mutable T-Squares, it is said, often manifest internally as compulsions, and we can definitely see a pattern in Nin's life where she was drawn to "re-create" the drama of her abandonment in an attempt to regain this lost love through the projection of her ideal, harmonious -- and created -- world.
However, there is another perfect example of this T-square... she wrote the first of her love letters to her absent father on the boat in transit to their new home in America. (Can this aspect be any more literal?)
"I tell so many lies I have to write them down and keep them in the lie box so I can keep them straight."
ANAÏS NIN'S WRITING CAREER:
Nin's published works include the critically acclaimed "Under A Glass Bell," "A Spy in the House of Love," "The Seduction of the Minotaur," "Delta of Venus," and "Little Birds."
However, for much of her career, she struggled within the literary community often fretting over whether they liked her or not. But she did not let this stop her urge to write. She continued to create, and when she couldn't get a publishing deal, she bought herself a printing press to self-publish her own books.
This is likely a manifestation of her Mercury/ Saturn inconjunct to Neptune in the 9th house. The ninth house is the domain of entrepreneurship and with her Mercury/ Saturn conjunction quincunx here, which is not an easy aspect, foretells of struggle that can be remedied with the right attitudes and adjustments. When a native works out the challenges found in this aspect, it often results in magical, as if fated, results.
Her Neptune is also within 5* of her Midheaven. The Midheaven denotes what we are ultimately known for, our public persona and also our legacy. With Neptune conjunct the Midheaven, there is always a touch of magic and mystery wrapped up in the legacy-- or a career based on delusions, illusions and confusion. Neptune Midheaven natives often become artists, actors, magicians or mental health professionals, or they contribute in one way or another to these causes in a very public way. There are multiple ways this manifested in Nin's life, from the previously mentioned publishing entrepreneur, to the grandiosity of imaginal flights of fancy.
It is interesting to note that Nin embellished many details in her diaries, even bragging about her ability to tell lies in a charming way. In fact, she told so many lies throughout her life that her accounts of having an affair with her own father and brother have recently come under question.
The last twenty five years of her life, she was a bigamist, married to two different men on two different coasts, and in order to keep her lies straight, she kept what she called a "lie box." It was said to contain two of everything -- checkbooks and prescription bottles each with her different married names. She even kept index cards on which she wrote the latest lies she told her husbands, the stories she told her lovers, and the concoctions she dreamed up to hide her multiple affairs.
To this day, there is confusion about the extent of her "real life" versus the beautiful world of her imagination. We don't know for certain which experiences were factual and which were not and Nin scholars often refer to her journals, not as diaries, but as "liaries."
"Luxury is not a necessity to me, but beautiful and good things are.”
Nin's Libra Rising means her chart is ruled by Venus, the Goddess of beauty and of Love. Her Venus is exalted in the sign of Pisces, and expressed itself in a very dreamy "rose-colored glasses" way. Her Venus gains strength from Jupiter, Pisces ruler, being in the sign of Pisces as well, and it gets an extra dose of feminine mystique with its conjunction to both Vesta (Goddess of Self-Preservation + Sacred Sexuality) and Eris (Goddess of Discord.)
Libra Risings identify with beauty and glamour. Anaïs Nin had striking features and was always well-coiffed.
The tendency is for Libra Risings to discover "self" through their relationships with others, and Nin was known to have had multiple sexual affairs with both men and women. She was a bigamist for the last 25 years of her life, maintaining a secret life with a husband on each coast. Nin took great pains to let it be known that she was trail blazer but when it came to her private life, she was well-kept by her banker husband, Hugo, who financed her -- and by her younger husband, Pole, who tended to the daily details of her life that kept her "sane." (ha!)
Mars in Venus can manifest in passive aggressiveness, or it can embolden the feminist spirit. Her Mars 1st House placement meant that she identified as a fearless and independent woman. This placement gave her the chutzpah to hold her own with the men she cavorted with in both the literary worlds and the world of psychoanalysis. With Mars in her first house, conjunct her Node of Fate, there is a sense that her identity would somehow help the collective evolve its consciousness.
With Mars in a trine to Pluto, there is the sense that she was absolutely fearless in recreating her identity throughout life. Her willingness to explore her sense of SELF was highly transformative, not only for her personal journey, but for the collective as well.
Overall, Nin's Libra Rising projects an image that is almost too obviously evident -- Nin was in love with the idea of being an independent yet very feminine woman, a woman who loved men, loved women, loved love...she identified as a Lover and injected the Voice of the Feminine into the literary world, a world that, at the time, made very little space for women to succeed.
In Nin's chart, Vesta, Venus and Eris are conjunct in Pisces. These three Goddess energies combine to give a flavor of "spiritualized erotic revenge."
I was intrigued to find this quote, (an excerpt from her diary, Vol. 1, about Henry and June) "I will always be the virgin-prostitute, the perverse angel, the two-faced sinister and saintly woman." I get the sense there is more to this statement, which can be found in this astro conjunction, which Anaïs felt on a visceral level.
Since Venus is her chart ruler, it shouldn't come as a surprise that Nin placed a high value on beauty and love. As mentioned, she explored her boundaries through relationships and sexual encounters, a Venusian characteristic.
Vesta, Goddess of the Sacred Flame, has strong associations with both the SELF (sacred self) and with sexuality. Vesta represents the Temple Priestess, one of whose function is sexual healing.
Eris is the Greek Goddess of Chaos, whose revenge seeking resulted in the Trojan War. This square to Neptune/ Athena conjunction tells of her struggle to deal with being an abandoned daughter... idealizing her father despite the fact he abused and abandoned her and later exacted revenge by having an incestuous affair with him.
These three Goddesses in the sixth house also correlate to the story of how and why she published her erotica, which she agreed to do on the premise that any proceeds would provide for her husbands beyond her passing.
Sixth house ruled by Mercury, the writer archetype and the house of service. Though she was hesitant to let her erotica be published, early in her career, her daily work as an erotica writer paid the bills. She did not feel passionate about this work. As expressed through the T-square to Venus, this daily work ultimately paid off in service to her husbands...
TO BE CONTINUED...
“I am an excitable person who only understands life lyrically, musically, in whom feelings are much stronger as reason. I am so thirsty for the marvelous that only the marvelous has power over me. Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. Reality doesn't impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls.”
(Wait. Is this not the most Piscean quote ever?)
Astrology Sources: www.astro.com