Freedom fighter and bon vivant, or pimp and pornographer? Hugh Hefner promoted a fantasy lifestyle that went beyond simply overthrowing bourgeois taboo, though his chart is a peculiar mixture of sex drive and detachment: chart lord Mercury, a eunuch planet retrograde in the seventh, shows a man with an air(brushed) and intellectual style in his relationships. He was formally married ‘only’ three times, and through all his sexual adventures probably valued simple company and conversation.
Mars and Jupiter in the natal fifth house of fun and love affairs are, respectively, exalted and debilitated in Capricorn, a combination of high drive and low morality. Mars, third and eighth lord, also exchanges signs with Saturn in the third house. The third is a kama (desire - not karma) house, the eighth from the eighth, and the natural domain of Mars, where Saturn in Scorpio reveals frustration and over-compensation. This plays up the difference between animal sex and romantic attraction, all with a jaded Saturnian undertone. Hefner first set up Playboy magazine in his Saturn-Mars dasha, in 1953, though his classic bathrobe image only emerged in Mercury dasha, beginning 1960.
April 9th 1926, 16:20pm, Chicago, USA
Capricorn navamsha lagna reinforces a calculating Saturnian style of relationship, which is channelled through the rasi fifth house. Venus rising in the D9 is also a form of karaka bhavo nashto (‘the significator destroys the house’), the notion that too much of a good thing becomes overwhelming. Everything in moderation. Somewhat surprising not to see rasi Rahu & Ketu associating with Hef's Venus or Mars - the nodes are about appetites and escapism, and they exaggerate planets they are with - though Rahu in the 10th shows Hef's public image, while Ketu in the 4th is a symbol for Playboy Mansion.
Moon and Venus are likewise symbols of the feminine, and in a man’s chart of relationship, and ironies, both are together in the sixth house of celibacy (Brahmachari ). Hefner went from a traditional first marriage - in Saturn-Venus period - to the opposite extreme, and said “A number of girlfriends is easier than one wife”, which for him no doubt it was. Venus is not happy in the sixth, and in a different time and place Hefner may have endured a sexless marriage in the traditional monogamous sense, and probably never forgot this. Yet the sixth is also the house of addictions, and shows a man for whom one woman was too many and a hundred was not enough.