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Aziz Ansari: Was He the Predator, or Was He the Prey?

Actor and comedian Aziz Ansari came under public scrutiny recently via the publishing of the account of a New York City woman’s experience on a date with Ansari. The woman, who’s only identified by the pseudonym “Grace,” was 22 at the time. The alleged incident occurred on 25 September 2017.

Grace said:

“I believe that I was taken advantage of by Aziz. I was not listened to and ignored. It was by far the worst experience with a man I’ve ever had.”

Writer Katie Way posted Grace’s account of the fateful evening on a website called “babe.” To date, I’ve only read two pieces of journalism related to this accusation:  the account itself and Bari Weiss’s opinion piece about it in The New York Times.

Aziz Ansari has not been accused of a crime. It seems that he’s just being accused of being an insensitive jerk. So what’s really going on here?

The chart for the event itself is fuzzy. I might look at a 9:00 PM chart for the night of their date, but that would be highly speculative at best.

However, my astrological interests are strongly centered on human nature. And we can definitely look at one of the participants’ natures through the lens of astrology. So let’s do that with Ansari.

Ansari’s Natal Chart

Ansari was born 23 February 1983 in Columbia, South Carolina, to Tamil Muslim parents.

I’ve looked at many celebrity charts for which we have confirmed birth times, and I’ve far more often found Pluto elevated in their birth charts, for example, than I have found an elevated Sun. So I typically start with an 8:00 AM birth time for everyone, famous or not, when we don’t have a confirmed birth time.

 

Aziz Ansari natal chart

Ansari’s Venus at 0 Aries explains why this story went public to begin with:

“Events involving the Aries Point, or people with it prominent in their charts, have impact. Their lives can affect many people. They have a connection to the public and the public has a connection to them. This is the degree of the zodiac bearing the message, ‘The personal is political.'” (PlanetWaves)

“Kiss and tell” is nothing new. But we live in the Information Age. And having this sort of of “news” zoom around the world in a red-hot second for consumption by billions of people is new, relatively speaking. The internet functions kind of like a nervous system for the entire planet. And all of us who are plugged into it are continually reacting to the stimuli we receive from the planetary nervous system.

Venus:  Your Sexual Style

Since Valentine’s Day is coming up, I wrote a “love post” a few days ago about Venus. This was before I became aware of the Ansari/Grace story. Here’s what I said about Venus in Aries:

Venus in Aries__Little Red Corvette_-min - Wandering Star AstrologyLITTLE RED CORVETTE. “Baby, you’re much too fast.” But they like it like that. Tell them you want to burn down the night with them. They spend a lot of time at the gym, and they want a lot of sex. They don’t speak in riddles, and neither should you. This is the “go hard or go home” Venus of the zodiac. They may propose on the third date, but you should play hard to get–they love the chase.

So Venus’s disposition/inclination in Aries is to assert its desire in a clear and forward manner. And the repeated vagueness, “mumbling” and “nonverbal cues” that Grace described herself as providing are a complete mismatch for the frank and straightforward style of Ansari’s Venus in Aries to begin with.

According to Grace’s account, Ansari rebuffed her at first–“nevertheless, she persisted.” And Ansari’s Venus in Aries is going to find a woman’s persistence to be very attractive.

The Unattainable Lover

Ansari’s watery Mars also makes an exact square to also-watery Neptune. In other words, friction arises when you combine Mars-style direct action with Neptunian lack of clarity. Marina at Darkstar Astrology notes about this aspect that “Chasing the unattainable lover is another manifestation, as Mars loves the chase while Neptune tends towards unrequited and courtly love.” Ansari was quite literally that night chasing a lover who, as it turned out, was unattainable. They did engage in some sexual activity, but Grace ultimately became both sexually and emotionally unavailable.

A guy with a Pisces sun and a Cancer Moon actually does have access to sensitivity and kindness. So it’s quite a curiosity that Grace didn’t see that side of Ansari on the night in question. Why not?

Even “Hard” Capricorn Has a Soft Side

Ansari’s South Node is in Capricorn, conjunct Neptune (in Sagittarius). There is a duality to the sign Capricorn that I think we sometimes overlook. Capricorn isn’t just a goat. It’s a hybrid creature–a sea-goat.

The goat is a land creature, reflecting Capricorn’s elemental alignment with Earth. But its lower, private half is a fish’s tail. So like Cancer’s crab, its polar opposite on the zodiac wheel, a Capricorn sea-goat also has emotions. But Capricorn’s emotions are hidden beneath its goatish upper half.

You’re not going to see the sea-goat’s fish tail unless you dive into the (emotional) water with it. And this concept is key to understanding Ansari’s South Node Capricorn “default” strategy and the karmic work of facilitating a more balanced nodal approach.

We never completely leave our South Node behind–nor should we. Like all of us, Ansari learned valuable lessons via his South Node “story.” But in order to grow, we redirect the South Node gifts toward different goals than we had early in life (or in a previous life).

Capricorn the Sea-GoatAnsari’s Capricorn/Cancer Nodes

Bari Weiss notes in her article that Ansari is not a mind reader. She’s 100 percent correct about that. His water planets are going to produce a person who’s extremely intuitive, though. Ansari is, by nature, a feelings reader. While he can’t read the thoughts in your head, he has a pronounced talent for reading an environment. Clearly his ability to do this failed on the night in question. Why?

Ansari previously experienced a certain reality with South Node in Capricorn and North Node in Cancer–and I’m going to utilize the natural house positions of 4th for Cancer and 10th for Capricorn here.  I believe he learned that if you show vulnerability, especially in public or to a stranger, that stranger is going to either clean your clock or suck you dry. It has a flavor, to me, of “You’re either the predator or you’re the prey.”

I believe that Ansari, with the fundamentally gentle and emotionally vulnerable nature that shows in his natal chart, learned early on (or in one or more past lives) to camouflage himself from predators. 

Prey animals can use many different means of camouflage to help them avoid the jaws of the predator. Some creatures specifically make use of camouflage in a way that makes them look larger or more threatening than they actually are. But the prey animal doesn’t have the ability to hurt the predator in any meaningful way. What you’re seeing is a show. In reality, it’s a vulnerable creature that’s trying not to become some other creature’s dinner.

What You See Isn’t Always What You Get

Clearly, Grace found Ansari’s Pisces rising “face” attractive enough to initiate a relationship of some sort with him. Interestingly, though, Ansari rebuffed her at first, and she persisted in pursuing him. And, to be honest, I can see how that persistence might be very attractive and relatable to a guy with Ansari’s Venus in Aries conjunct Mars.

snake-caterpillar-head.jpg.860x0_q70_crop-smart

This *looks* like a venomous snake, but it’s really a caterpillar’s camouflage. (treehugger.com)

But Grace’s lack of a foundational emotional relationship with Ansari prior to consenting to have sex with him–and this happened as a “nonverbal cue”  when she agreed to go home with him after their dinner date–meant that Grace had no way of knowing that Ansari is also a sexually bold and assertive guy. She just “saw” his gentle Piscean Sun and Cancer moon and assumed that what she saw would be what she got.

Not to belabor the point, but people are never that simple.

His Neptune conjunct the South Node suggests a early-life or past-life pattern of him not seeing (or not being able to see) the reality (Capricorn) of what’s in front of him. This may well be self-delusion, but it’s equally possible that someone might be trying to delude him.

Grace Felt Unsafe–But I Think Ansari Did Too

It seems that Grace was expecting a soft, fluffy kitty and got a wildcat instead. It seems that Ansari was expecting a wildcat but didn’t even get a soft, fluffy kitty–he got a mouse instead.

Who wouldn’t be confused?!

In private, Ansari became more assertive than the person she saw at first–the Piscean sun and Cancerian moon.

In private, Grace became less assertive than the person he saw at first who had persistently pursued him.

It looks as if these two people were confused by the changes they saw in each other. I think these changes made them both feel unsafe.  And they both reacted, each in their own way, to try to protect themselves in a situation that had morphed into something neither of them understood. 

Update:  “Grace’s” identity is now known, and she is a photographer by the name of Abby Nierman. And the idea has indeed been put forth that “the photographer is accusing Aziz for money and publicity.”

So my question is a fair one: Was Ansari the predator, or was he the prey?

To be fair, Nierman’s account indicates that Ansari was asking her questions about what she wanted–questions that she was not able to answer due to her own confusion–and, perhaps, her own need to make things work out with Ansari if she was pursuing the relationship, at least in part, as a way to advance her career.

It’s understandable after looking at Ansari’s chart that he may have interpreted Grace’s “nonverbal cues” as playing hard to get. Venus in Aries likes that game.

Nierman needs to take responsibility for her inability to “own” and verbalize her desires. And she also needs to look deeply at her own motivations for pursuing Ansari.

And as far as Ansari is concerned, the South Node response or reaction to a situation is regarded in evolutionary astrology as a lower or unevolved expression of whatever it touches.

“. . . once he has made up his mind he [Capricorn] sticks to his course. Fear, frustration, resistance–nothing can sway him. He may feel those forces, but Capricorn’s actual behavior always reflects his intentions, not his emotions.” — Steven Forrest

With that said, Ansari is not wrong, on one level, to protect himself.  Celebrities and public figures often have difficult encounters with the paparazzi or with grifters or starfuckers or straight-up stalkers. His Chiron in Taurus actually does speak to the experience of something painful in the landscape, an “unhealable wound,” whether that’s a karmic experience or something that’s happened in his present life.

Chiron’s loose trine to Neptune indicates that some kind of illusion or delusion is involved. And with Chiron being in Taurus and Taurus being the natural ruler of the 2nd house, Ansari is not wrong to be concerned that someone might be trying to take advantage of him financially.

But there’s a way forward for Ansari that offers him better protection than defaulting to South Node Capricorn’s hard camouflage and dogged persistence in the face of what may look, even subconsciously, like danger.

Dealing With a (Possible) Predator, Cancer-Style

Asserting yourself when you’re suddenly faced with a predator is best left as an emergency strategy. You never want to face a predator when you’re at your most vulnerable. The chances that your scary camouflage will work if you have to whip it out in an emergency are iffy–because if the predator is hungry enough and desperate enough, it might just attack you anyway.

But what if they took steps to avoid or outsmart the predator before things ramped up to emergency status? Their chances of surviving another day just got way better.

For Ansari, his North Node in Cancer secret weapon is his considerable intuition. 

It’s a very good idea for Ansari to get to know potential intimate partners on a deeper emotional level before he engages in sexual activity with them. Now, I’m not saying that everybody has to do this as some kind of stealth imposition of morality on the collective. But it’s clearly a good idea for Ansari personally.

1280_ansari_masterofnone_getty

Ansari with his parents and his brother. His parents periodically appear on the show, and his brother, left, also writes for the show. (Getty Images)

  • He can absolutely trust his intuition–his water sun and water moon are going to key him in to plenty of subtle information about people and situations.
  • He can absolutely trust his Saturn in Scorpio conjunct Pluto, the modern sign ruler of Scorpio. If a sign’s energy works to his detriment in one area of his chart, why not look to the sign’s planetary ruler to see if there’s a better way to work with that energy? Ansari can actually make much better use of Saturn’s persistence in Scorpio than he can with his South Node being in Saturn-ruled Capricorn. Saturn in Scorpio is going to relentlessly dig until it gets to the bottom of it, whatever “it” is. And sex is always on Scorpio’s menu.  Ansari needs to use this energy to help him get clear about people’s motivations before he shows them his more private, sexual side.
  • Cancer on the 4th house cusp with Moon in Cancer shows that he can trust his family, whether it’s family by blood or family by choice, to have his back. And just from what I see in the media, he’s got a wonderfully supportive relationship with his family.

“My mom doesn’t even like acting on the show. She’s really just doing it because she loves me very much. She hates acting. Before the second season, when we announced the second season, she’s like, “OK, this season the mom character’s on vacation or she’s just gone.” And I was like, “She can’t be on vacation the whole time.” She’s like, “No, maybe she’s at a wedding sometimes.” She just didn’t want to be a part of it. She did it because she loves me and my brother is also heavily involved with the show. It’s a really special thing that we get to do this together. … And after the [first] season aired, my dad came to New York and we went on Stephen Colbert’s show together. … And we went out to dinner afterwards, and he was telling me, … “The reason I’m acting in the show and doing all of this is just to spend more time with you and to see you.” — Aziz Ansari

So that Saturn at 4 Scorpio connects in flowing trine to his Sun at 4 Pisces and makes another flowing trine to his North Node at 2 Cancer. So all this deep-digging and intuiting about people is actually laid out as karmic work for him. And it should be rather easy for him because trines are an easy energy to work with. The danger with trines is that we can get lazy and not maximize our opportunities.

With Pluto in Libra conjunct Saturn in Scorpio, this need to dig into people’s motivations is further focused on the topic of his potential intimate partners. And speaking of Pluto in Libra, its polarity point in Ansari’s chart is at 29 Aries. The Sabian Symbol for 29-30 Aries is The Music of the SpheresEsteemed Sabian astrologer Lynda Hill notes,

“This is a particularly intuitive Symbol. It appears that it does not matter if things are going well or not, if you are in tune with your own inner voice, this can be a time of at-one-ment or attunement with your path. Listening to the ‘Music’ around you can open up messages from your own inner voice… Being in harmony with your surroundings can bring rewards both seen and unseen.” 

And this is *exactly* the message being conveyed by Ansari’s North Node in Cancer. 

Many of us have experienced how frightening it can be, at times, to stay real and stay sensitive and stay in the moment rather than reflexively doing something that we think will keep us safe. But in this case, and with hindsight, Ansari’s now-understandable Capricornian hard camouflage turned out not to be the best way to handle the situation.

Aziz Ansari isn’t a perfect person, and neither are the rest of us. But I do find convincing evidence in his natal chart that he’s basically a nice guy who should have listened to his gut. And his Venus on the Aries Point says that this situation has got some things to teach the rest of us too.

Do you have some insights to share about Aziz Ansari’s birth chart? Share your thoughts below in the comments!

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