Astrology

Steve Jobs Another Look By Steven Stuckey, USA

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Steven Stuckey (Shastrakara das) began his study of Astrology in 1968. He started teaching classes in both Western sidereal and Jyotish techniques in 1979 and was instrumental in the initial introduction of Jyotish in the United States. He currently resides in southern Oregon where he continues to teach and advise an international clientele. He may be reached by email at: shastra@gotsky.com

Steve Jobs—Another Look

By

Steven Stuckey, USA

Steve Jobs passed away at the age of 56 on Oct 5th at 3:00 PM at his longtime residence in Palo Alto, California. He was surrounded by his family members. His last words, according to his sister Mona Simpson, were “Oh Wow, Oh Wow, Oh Wow!.

I think many of his friends and fans might also use those same words to describe Jobs’ life and all the amazing innovations that he contributed to our world during his brief sojourn on planet Earth. At the time of his passing he had 42 United States patents issued in his name and was listed as the primary or co-inventor on 342 patents or patent applications. Jobs was praised worldwide as a visionary who had a leading role in shaping the culture in which we live. From the Apple and iMac computers to the IPod, IPhone and IPad, our world has been forever transformed during his lifetime.

Two years prior to his death, Jobs sought out biographer Walter Isaacson to tell his story. Jobs instructed all of his friends and colleagues who were interviewed for the book (there were over 100) to give an honest accounting of their feelings, as he wanted to leave an accurate legacy of

himself. After reading the nearly 600 page biography I would like to share a few astrological thoughts on the not-so-well-known aspects of his life.

Jobs was the son of Abdulfattah Jandali and Joanne Carole Schieble who were unmarried at the time he was born and were students at the University in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Joanne’s father, Arthur Schieble, did not approve of the marriage and threatened to disown her if she married against his will. Under much duress, she travelled to San Francisco in early 1955 and stayed at a home for unwed mothers to deliver and subsequently adopt her child.

Jobs was born February 24th, 1955 @ 7:15 PM in San Francisco, Ca. This data comes from his birth certificate that was re-issued by the California State Dept. of Vital Records on March 2, 1954. The certificate includes the names of his foster parents Paul and Clara Jobs and was ordered by the Superior Court of California after the adoption was approved. We can be certain that this is the correct document for Jobs, as the Dept. of Vital Records is required by the Court to accurately transcribe the data from the original birth certificate.

Only a week separates the birth and the March 2nd certificate re-issue date so we can therefore assume that Steve was taken immediately into the care of his foster parents and spent little or no time with his biological mother. Joanne Schieble would later express tremendous remorse for her decision to give her son up for adoption and Steve would carry a deep frustration and anger within himself throughout his life because of it.

For a birth time of 7:15 PM, the Lagna becomes 29 Leo using Lahiri ayanamsa and therefore there is a question of whether he has Leo or Virgo ascending. Although a number of articles have been written giving Leo as the Ascendant and there is a good rationale behind them, after reading his recent biography, I’ve decided to give him Virgo Lagna. In this case I am adding 5 minutes of clock time to the birth to get 0 Virgo rising. For all examples below I am also using the parallax corrected Moon.

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Jobs had an impact on millions of people worldwide in his lifetime and his name and products will live on to influence many millions more. One needs a very powerful chart to achieve this type of status. With Virgo Lagna we do have such a chart. Three natural benefics, Jupiter, Moon and Venus occupy Kendra’s. Venus and Moon are the primary indicators of social life and their placement in Kendra’s will often result in the native’s living life in full view of the public, especially with the Moon’s occupation of the 7th house. In addition the lords of all Kendra’s and Trikona’s occupy either a Kendra or Trikona except for Saturn as lord of the 5th.

Additionally, Lagna lord Mercury is in the 5th house of creative intelligence, is free from combustion, has no malefic aspects and is only a few hours from its Direct station. Mercury is disposited by friend, 5th lord Saturn, that is also nearing its Rx station with 00*00’ of motion, is exalted, and receives an exact aspect from Jupiter. Mercury occupies Capricorn in the Rasi chart, while Navamsa Lagna is also Capricorn and the Sun occupies Saturn signs in both Rasi and Navamsa (Aquarius and Capricorn). Saturn also occupies the Mercurial sign of Gemini in the Navamsa. These placements, emphasizing the dual influence of both Saturn and Mercury, describe a very intelligent, logical, critical, detached, and disciplined individual.

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Throughout his nearly 600 page biography, Jobs is described as an uncompromising and compulsive perfectionist who nearly drove everyone around him crazy in his search for a better product. He was also a fastidious and oftentimes fanatical vegan who would eat mono diets and go on fasts. He was highly critical, especially of persons who were in his employ. He would drive his team at Apple, Macintosh and NeXt with constant exhortations to improve their products and he only wanted to surround himself with the best employees or ‘A’ team members. He would even chastise brilliant engineers and scream that their work was total “crap” and that they were all dumb idiots when things didn’t measure up to his nearly impossible standards. He lived for years before his marriage with almost no furnishings except for a few simple chairs.  All of his guests, including business associates, were required to sit on the floor for meetings and meals at his home. While his net worth at this time was in the hundreds of millions of dollars, he went without furniture because he could find nothing that would meet his extraordinary high requirements for simplicity, beauty and functionality.

It was more than a simple desire for perfection however that drove Steve Jobs. He had an artistic vision of life and wanted to instill that in all of his products. His dream was to combine the best of science with the humanities, the technical with the aesthetic, and he wanted to design products that expressed this ideal both in hardware and software applications. He often spoke of purity and strove to find that in himself, his friends and his work. In Steve’s world there was no compromise or middle ground between two extremes—one was either a “brilliant” genius or he was a jerk; a product was either a technical and aesthetic masterpiece or it was “crap”. These ideals of perfection and purity can be derived in part from the qualities of Virgo Lagna, but that alone is not sufficient to describe his extreme position.

Venus is the planet of beauty and art and it occupies the sign of Sagittarius in both the Rasi and Navamsa charts. Venus here is ever striving for something higher and better and often can find nothing in the mundane world to satisfy this idealism. The exact aspect of Jupiter on Venus can greatly magnify this perfectionistic ideal.  Venus receives an exact aspect as well from an exalted Saturn. Saturn’s aspect on Venus is common in the charts of artists and musicians and imparts timing, harmony, structure and form to Venus. This combination of Saturn and Jupiter upon the natal Venus as the 9th lord of Dharma, gave Jobs a lifelong yearning to achieve the pinnacle of excellence by creating unparalleled objects of beauty and functionality.

If we juxtapose the detached, technical, aesthetic side of Jobs with his highly emotional nature, we have a description of a man who possessed two very distinct sides to his personality. The Moon in Pisces has the potential to be the most emotionally volatile of any planetary position and here it also occupies Scorpio Navamsa while receiving the aspect of Mars. The Moon is also involved in a Papakartari yoga, as natural malefics Sun and Mars surround it on both sides. The Moon, although waxing, was only two days past Amavasya and could barely be seen as a thin crescent setting on the western horizon at the time Jobs was born. Saturn and Mercury are involved in very linear thinking and taking ideas from the past, building a careful foundation from predecessors and making gradual improvements based upon an empirical model.  Visionary ideas and thinking ‘outside the box’ on the other hand, are not part of the Saturn/Mercury ‘portfolio’. Visionary ‘thinking’ is more likely to come from the Moon and so it must be here that Jobs received his inspiration. The Moon in Pisces is especially open to the intuitive and psychic side of life and despite having little light, it makes its presence known in the chart by the occupation of a Kendra. It also possesses very high Shad Bala and Vimshopak totals. Sunset on Jobs’ birthday was at 5:52 PM local time and therefore the Sun was well below the horizon at the time of birth that occurred almost an hour and a half later. By moving the birth time forward 5 minutes, the Moon also drops into the 7th house of the Bhava Chakra. Considering his highly visible public persona over his entire life, the Moon’s position in the 7th house of both Rasi and Bhava chakras makes sense.

The Moon’s less-than-ideal situation along with a heavy Saturnian emphasis in the chart, may also account for his near total lack of empathy. His girlfriend of five years, Tina Redse, with whom Jobs had an up and down relationship, explained to biographer Walter Isaacson her reason for refusing Jobs’ marriage proposal: “I couldn’t abide his unkindness. I didn’t want to hurt him, yet I didn’t want to stand by and watch him hurt other people either. I think the issue is empathy—the capacity for empathy is lacking.” The Moon, as the major indicator of empathy in a chart, although angular and occupying a water sign, is not well integrated into the chart by aspect. In fact it receives no full aspects and the closest aspect it makes to any planet is a very close minor aspect with Saturn by sesquisquare or 135 degrees.

Jobs was born under Sa/Ra/Sa and Saturn’s aspect from the 2nd house of the family to Rahu in the 4th of the mother and early environment, may be one explanation for his adoption. Saturn also aspects the natal Venus, lord of the 9th house of the father. As Venus is posited in the 4th house of the mother, its aspect from Saturn may also represent the loss of both parents. Venus and Jupiter, lords of the 9th and 4th, can be taken to rule both the biological and adoptive parents. His biological mother was highly educated and later became a speech therapist[1] as can be read by the 4th lord Jupiter in the 10th house in Gemini, while his real father, also with a Phd and who is currently employed as a VP of a large Casino/Hotel, is represented by the 9th lord Venus in the 4th house. The foster parents, who accepted Jobs as their own son and provided a loving and supportive environment for him to grow up in, can simultaneously be read as being representative of the significations of Venus and Jupiter.

Throughout the biography Jobs is referred to as an extraordinarily manipulative and coercive individual and few could say ‘No’ to him when he wanted or demanded something from them. One of his software engineers described this as a “reality distortion field”. In his presence, reality was malleable, and therefore he could convince anyone of practically anything. In this way, Jobs was able to “con people into believing his vision…” whether they thought it could be achieved or not. Jobs had very little technical background to speak of other than a few electronics classes he took as a teenager and he never finished even a year of college in his youth, yet was able to persuade the best and brightest engineers that his visions could be achieved, even against their own better judgment and experience.

He achieved his ends through charm and intelligence but more often through outright temper tantrums, screaming, insults and threats. He was well known for his very harsh and critical speech which can be easily explained by Saturn’s occupation of the 2nd house and receiving the aspect of Mars while Mars occupies the 2nd house from the Moon and is aspected by Saturn. In his case, a very strong Sunapha Yoga is also formed, with Mars in Aries in the 2nd from the Moon. According to the Saravali, if Sunapha is caused by Mars the result will be: “the native will be valorous, wealthy, cruel in speech, be an army chief, will be fierce, tortuous, proud and inimical.”

Many people were simply afraid of him and few could stand up to his intense gaze with cold, unblinking eyes when he insisted on getting his way. Venus and Mercury as benefic lords for Virgo are powerfully placed in Jobs’ chart in a Kendra and Trine. Although not connected in the chart by association, they nevertheless add their respective significations to his persuasive personality and make up important components of his manipulative ‘toolbox’. Venus’ close aspect to Jupiter, while both occupy Kendra’s, also gives an abundance of social skills and grace. Venus manipulates through charm, nice appearance, good taste and social savvy and Mercury through intelligence and knowledge. These two planets taken together are far more subtly persuasive than the more overt, adolescent and coercive antics of Mars. In Jobs’ case, he had the ability to use both of these methods to get what he wanted.

The Moon in Scorpio Navamsa receiving the aspect of Mars while applying to a sesquisquare with Pluto in the Rasi chart, also added to his coercive abilities. Pluto is known as the most manipulative and coercive planet and we also find the Sun in his chart forming a square to Pluto in the Navamsa. These are more subtle and minor but necessary components of the chart to consider in my opinion in order to fully understand his nature.

There is a special situation in the chart wherein all lords of Kendra’a and Trikona’s are related by dispositorship. Mercury as ruler of the 1st and 10th is disposited by Saturn, lord of 5th. Saturn in its turn is disposited by Venus, lord of 9th and Venus by Jupiter, lord of 4th and 7th.  Jupiter in its turn is disposited by Mercury. So we have a connection then between Mercury, Saturn, Venus and Jupiter by this rule. In addition these planets are all linked by aspect. Saturn gives a full and exact to the degree aspect to Venus. Venus in turn is aspected precisely by Jupiter. Jupiter gives an exact aspect to Saturn as well and both Saturn and Jupiter throw a 75% aspect to Mercury. Jobs’ dream of combining technology and aesthetics is perfectly described by the relationship of these four planets. Saturn and Mercury provide the exacting technical skills, while Saturn’s aspect upon Venus in Jupiter’s sign gives the love for aesthetic perfection.

Many important events in Jobs’ life took place under the auspices of the above four planets. Jobs visited India from April to November of 1974 under Me/Sa/Me through Me/Sa/Ve. He spent several days at the Kumbha Mela in April as Jupiter was transiting across his natal Sun, lord of the 12th house. This sojourn in India had a profound and lasting effect on his life.

Apple was officially founded via a partnership agreement on April 1, 1976 under Me/Sa/Ju, and Apple Computer Inc. was formed in January under the Ke/Ve/Me. The initial public offering or IPO of Apple stock was done on the morning of Dec 12, 1980 under Ke/Ve/Ju and the Pixar Corp IPO occurred on Nov 30, 1995 under Ve/Ju/Ra. Venus as lord of 2nd and 9th for wealth and fortune occupies Jupiter’s sign in the 4th house with Rahu and receives the aspect of Jupiter and Ketu from the 10th.  Jobs made $256 million from the Apple IPO and $1.2 billion from the Pixar.

The incredibly successful iPod was unveiled on Oct. 23, 2001 under Ve/Merc/Ju and the first iTunes store was opened under Ve/Ke/Me in April of 2003. Jobs, although not a musician, had a great love and appreciation for both music and art. He literally saved the music industry with the invention of the iPod.  In 2001 the music business was in danger due to a great loss of sales from MP3 file sharing on-line via Napster and similar software. It was about this time also that unlimited high speed and ‘always-on’ internet connections were becoming commonplace. Royalties to musicians and artists were being by-passed by the free downloading of music. Jobs’ introduction of the iTunes store allowed subscribers to legally purchase songs for only 99 cents apiece and therefore solved the problem that was brewing with the illegal use of file sharing. Jobs personally negotiated contracts with recording companies and musicians to allow their songs to be sold via the iTunes store and thereby generated much love and gratitude from the entire music industry. In doing so, he completely took all of his competitors by surprise, including Bill Gates at Microsoft. Much to everyone’s surprise also at Apple, no legitimate competitor ever emerged to challenge the dominance of the iPod.

Steve Jobs developed kidney stones and other ailments in 1997, a grueling year in which he worked 14 hour days as the head of two corporations, Apple and Pixar. He felt, looking back in retrospect, that this was also the year that he began to develop cancer. The transiting Mars that year spent the first 7 months in the sign of Virgo and therefore was in Steve’s Lagna as it travelled in Direct and Rx motion. Saturn occupied the sign of Pisces the entire year and was casting its aspect on the Lagna as well. Mars possesses only 1 bindu in Ashtakavarga when transiting Virgo while Saturn has 3 bindus in Pisces—both planets therefore are capable of causing troubles or disease in their connection to the 1st house. The transiting Rahu was also in the sign of Virgo in 1996 through July of 1997. During this same year, Jobs was running his Ve/Sa period and was in Ve/Sa/Ve for nearly half the year. Libra and Venus both rule over the kidneys and Saturn in Libra, as lord of the 6th, may cause kidney stones.

Despite his kidney problems, Jobs managed to stay relatively disease free until he entered the dasha of the Sun in June of 2003. He was diagnosed with a pancreatic neuro-endocrine tumor in October of 2003 while in the Su/Su or the Su/Mo. The Sun occupies the 6th house in an enemy’s sign and is lord of the 12th, while it is lord of the 6th from the Moon and occupies the 12th.  The Sun also occupies the Navamsa lagna in Capricorn as lord of the 8th with Ketu.  Sun receives the lowest Shad Bala and Vimshopak points of all planets. Jupiter rules over the pancreas and liver as well as tumors and growths in general and is a maraka planet for Virgo Lagna. Jupiter occupies the sign of its enemy (Gemini) while associating with Ketu and also tenants the 6th house of the Navamsa chakra in the sign of Gemini along with Saturn.

A successful surgery of the tumor was performed on July 31, 2004 while the Su/Mar/Su was running. Mars rules and occupies the 8th house, is aspected by Saturn and also tenants the 22nd Drekkana, so is capable of causing much pain and suffering. However by early 2008 the cancer returned at the very end of the Sun dasha and a liver transplant was required under the Su/Ve/Sa on March 21, 2009. Venus’ connection to the liver can be read by its occupation of the 5th bhava of the Kalapurusha and its rulership of the 5th house in the Navamsa. It receives the full aspect of 6th lord Saturn while in the sign of Jupiter (Sagittarius) in both Rasi and Navamsa. The transplant was considered very fortunate as there is always a long waiting list for such things and not everyone is lucky enough to receive one. Recipients are chosen according to a special score that is determined from various factors including the urgency of the surgery and how long a person has been on the waiting list. Wealth is not a factor in this and a person cannot jump up in the queue illegally. Jobs was able to get on two state waiting lists (California and Tennessee) and received the transplanted liver of a young man who was killed in a car accident in Memphis. Jobs’ doctors had predicted that his liver would give out in April of 2009 so without the transplant he certainly would have died. He was running the Su/Ve/Sa/Ju period from March 29th to April 7th.  This combination includes the lords of 6 and 12 along with maraka’s Venus and Jupiter. Could it be possible that Jobs was slated to pass on at this time and perhaps got a bit of a reprieve?

Jobs returned to Apple after his surgery and was able to put out the IPad before he passed on. He gradually became weaker and continued to lose weight as the cancer reasserted itself and began to spread throughout his body. His death occurred on October 5th, 2011 under the Mo/Ra/Ke. The Moon qualifies as a death inflictor by its occupation of the 7th house and by its rulership of the 7th in Navamsa while occupying its debilitation sign of Scorpio and receiving the aspect of 8th lord Mars. Rahu and Ketu, natural malefics conjoining maraka’s Venus and Jupiter, are also capable of causing death during their period.

Some additional considerations of his chart include Mercury in a close novile or 40 degree relationship with Uranus. Here Mercury is 160 degrees from Uranus in the Rasi chart, which places it in tight conjunction in the Navamsa chakra. Any exact 40 degree relationship between planets in the Rasi will bring about a conjunction of those planets in the Navamsa. This is the closest aspect that Mercury receives from any planet in the chart and is only 14’ from exact. Moon is also in a 200 degree relationship with Neptune and therefore winds up conjoining Neptune in the Navamsa. A Mercury/Uranus connection is known as the inventor’s aspect and is the best possible combination for innovative thinking. Similarly the Moon/Neptune conjunction is a combination that adds to one’s intuitive and visionary capabilities. The psychic or intuitive aspect of the Moon is enhanced by its occupation of the water signs Pisces and Scorpio in the Rasi and Navamsa respectively.

Lastly, Steve Jobs had a somewhat rare combination known as Veena or Vallaki Yoga. This is one of the Nabasha Yoga’s mentioned in the BPHS and other classical texts and consists of all seven planets occupying seven different signs. The result of this yoga is that the person will have a large number of friends, will be fond of music and the fine arts, be learned, happy, famous and wealthy. This description certainly does describe Jobs’ life to a large extent.  He practically became a messiah or savior to the entire music industry with his invention of the iPod and the ITunes stores. He took great pains (to the point of extreme compulsive and obsessive behavior) to design all of his products with the utmost artistic care. This included flying around the world to consult with some of the most talented artists in their field. He also completely changed the standard of animation films with his groundbreaking Pixar Studios.

There is a spiritual component to his chart as well and this is due to Saturn, as the exalted lord of the 5th throwing an exact aspect to the lord of the 9th, Venus. Saturn, Venus and the Sun are all receiving the full aspect of Jupiter. Money was not the main motivating factor in his life. He maintained an austerity and simplicity throughout life and was not interested in having ‘more’. He wanted to deliver the best and most beautiful products to the world and always kept that objective in mind. His most difficult conflicts came after discovering that many of his business associates, managers and board members did not share his lofty vision and were more content to rake in the profits while offering mediocre products. Part of his reputation as an extremely coercive personality came as a result of battles he had with his associates. In some ways, in this respect, I feel his behavior was justified, as he could not tolerate laziness, ineptitude and greed and had to constantly set the bench mark for improving the quality of all of his products. He was strongly service oriented and brought a heightened consciousness to the world marketplace. Without his vision, accompanied by forceful pushing, diligence and vigilance to create a higher standard we would not have many of the modern marvels we take for granted today.

[1] This is a very important clue for his birth time rectification – SA Publisher.

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