This past weekend Will Smith retaliated against Chris Rock at the Academy Awards in response to the presenter’s callous remark against Jada Pinkett-Smith’s hairstyle. Jada suffers from alopecia, a medical condition resulting in her hair loss, and Will’s move to protect his wife perfectly sums the major themes of his life. His birth chart, as the blueprint for his soul’s incarnation, is a powerful map of those themes.
Will Smith’s Saturn is retrograde and in fall in Aries, signaling the influence of a martial father figure who struggled to give an ideal sense of structure, who did not easily embody the role of father.
Will’s father was an alcoholic and physically abusive toward his wife, as Will recalls in his memoir:
“My father was violent, but he was also at every game, play, and recital. He was an alcoholic, but he was sober at every premiere of every one of my movies. He listened to every record. He visited every studio. The same intense perfectionism that terrorized his family put food on the table every night of my life.
My father tormented me. And he was also one of the greatest men I’ve ever known. He was one of the greatest blessings of my life, and also one of my greatest sources of pain.”
Will’s father beat his mother so badly that the trauma remained with Will into adulthood, to the point where Will even once contemplated killing his own father. Will's Moon is conjunct Neptune in Scorpio and sextile Pluto, aptly corresponding to his depth and intensity of feeling. The Moon in Scorpio is martial and therefore signifies a powerful inclination to protect himself and those closest to his heart. Neptune adds a sense of spiritual attunement and calling, yet can manifest as clouded emotions, feelings not readily understood or controlled and that require conscious processing.
The protector aspect is doubly represented by Mars in Virgo, where Mars - who acts and defends - is placed in the Whole Sign 4th house of family and is trine his retrograde Saturn in Aries. Will invests his energy in his family, as his father did, and his complicated relationship to his father comprises both a fundamental disagreement with his father’s methods but a deeper understanding of and alignment with his father’s principles.
Like his father, Will tirelessly seeks to defend his family. But, given that the figures of a person’s life are inextricably linked to their psyche, Will’s retrograde Saturn in Aries can also represent his own struggle to easily enact boundaries and structure in his life, where his journey as a patriarch within his own family unit bears constant inward reflection.
Indeed, his planetary placements in Virgo in the 4th house however show a tendency toward self-critical behavior, where his constant introspection melds with the Moon-Neptune theme of a powerfully felt, unavoidable subconscious. Scorpio and Virgo are signs of scrutiny that fixate rather than relax and let go. Virgo is a sign of perfectionism and Will has consistently sought to correct his own mistakes, to strive for a greater version of himself.
For decades Will has had to deal with his family issues and fame, where his capacity to feel collective emotions so deeply has made him not only a compelling actor but also a spiritual person who openly processes his own psyche so thoughtfully in the public eye, as through his memoir.
Will’s stellium of the Sun and a conjoined Venus and Mercury in Libra also confirms a strong tendency to consider other people, to appear gracious and charming, to consider himself through the eyes of others. The other-oriented lens of Libra further complicates his sense of self and adds to the self-conscious, critical behavior of his Virgo and Scorpio placements.
Will’s Libra placements in his chart clearly speak to his desire to present as gracious and his general skill in accomplishing a persona of likeability, yet his spiritual lessons in life - represented by Saturn, the North Node, and Chiron in the opposite house of Aries - demand that he confronts and masters seemingly untamable energy, that he learns to discipline himself through integrating all the conflicting forces and feelings within his psyche. The drive to forge a singular identity (North Node in Aries) clashes with the comfort of simply relaxing into people-pleasing via a smooth, pleasant, charming persona (Libra). His drive for fairness (also Libra) also positively compels him toward self-evaluation, to determine his actions always come from a place of moral principle.
Yods are astrological configurations comprising planetary aspects: two inconjunct aspects and one sextile, as seen between Will’s Saturn, Jupiter / Pluto, and Moon / Neptune. Yods signify a fated, complex set of themes, a question in the chart native’s that demand an answer, that must be dealt with throughout the lifetime. Karen Hamaker-Zondag writes in The Yod Book that yods often represent unmastered themes and energies that can pass down through family generations.
Will’s outburst at the Oscars, then, came from a wellspring of emotion dating not only decades back to his own childhood, but to generations of family lineage. The relentless perfectionism of his ancestors manifests yet again through Will Smith, as unresolved family karma seeking greater mastery and resolution. Will’s effort to protect his wife from a hurtful comment was triggered by his failure to protect his mother from domestic abuse.
Will was overcome by his emotions, by his trauma, where his immense compassion fused with his capacity for fiery, instinctive action. Will’s actions came from a good place, from a heart of love, yet resulted in the potential harm (more so emotional than physical) of Chris Rock. Will’s wife was humiliated, Chris Rock was humiliated, and Will himself was humiliated and overwhelmed, as confirmed by his teary speech about God’s calling of him, as well as his later apology to Chris, the Academy, and the team of King Richard.
Will’s allusion to God affirms his understanding of his life as one of spiritual purpose, where his chart so perfectly illustrates the destined themes of his life.
Fate presents its demands: How does one master their role as father, as familial protector? How can a soul such as Will preside over his emotions as a conscious, self-aware actor rather than allow those feelings and impulses to seize control?
Each soul chooses their life path before birth, and that a soul’s unmastered lessons from prior lifetimes can mesh with the unmastered energies of a family line, where the desired evolution of a soul can choose to join the story of a family’s shared desired evolution. I maintain that the Smiths have chosen to live their lives as teachers for the collective as they themselves learn and grow. The Smith family - Will and Jada in particular - consistently bring up questions about what it means for them to live their life authentically and have therefore stirred public discussions about raising children, for example, as well as how to conduct a healthy marriage, especially one that defies traditional expectations of monogamy.
It’s never easy to face the chosen lessons of a life, let alone one beneath the ceaseless glare of the public eye. I commend the Smiths for grappling with their humanity so honestly and with so much thoughtfulness and intention, and have shared my thoughts of Will, his life, and his astrology, in an effort to help us do the same.