Early on in their relationship Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow made a pact never to be photographed together or to talk about their love life in public. For this idealistic Pisces couple – it’s his Sun Sign and her Rising Sign – avoiding the negative attentions of the paparazzi was paramount in ensuring their romance would be as blissfully perfect as possible.
A decade later in 2014, when their marriage finally ended, once again the emphasis was on protecting their privacy, with Gwyneth requesting on her blog that, as she and Chris ‘consciously uncouple and co-parent’, the world should continue to respect their own, and their childrens’ space.
Despite the mutual differences which had slowly revealed themselves during the course of their ten years together, their affection for each other still meant far too much to both of them to risk being destroyed by media intrusion and lies.
A Guy with 'Texture to his Soul'
When she met clean-living Chris at the end of 2002, Gwyneth Paltrow was immediately struck by his sensitivity, which set him apart from the Hollywood brat pack. With two broken engagements behind her and a growing longing to be married (well, she is a Libran!), Miss Paltrow also had a reputation for being unlucky in love. This time, though, she sensed it would be different:
Here, as she told Elle Magazine, was a spiritually evolved guy with a ‘texture to his soul’ – a 'kindness, generosity of spirit and willingness to understand other people'. In other words, just what you would expect of a typical Pisces – the most mystical sign of the Zodiac and the sign most likely to put others’ needs before its own.
At the time, by her own admission Gwyneth had been in a bad place, devastated by the tragic death, just three weeks earlier, of her beloved father, the producer/director Bruce Paltrow. Yet with Martin’s help, she slowly gained the strength to overcome her grief, prompting her to tell the Sun newspaper that it was ‘heaven sent’ that she met him because he ‘really saved’ her.
No question, this was a hugely significant turning point for the American-born actress. Transiting Pluto (the planet of endings and new beginnings), poised on the Midheaven of her birth chart, coupled with a life-changing solar eclipse opposite her natal Moon, confirmed something really big was going on.
As Alike as Two Peas in a Pod?
With such a short interval between her father’s death and her meeting with Chris, it seemed to Gwyneth that the two events had to be interlinked. Could it have been, as she later suggested, that her dear departed Pop had sent musician Chris to be her future soul mate?
Certainly, this was a guy who, at that time, appeared to resemble her so closely, she felt in many ways they were like two peas in a pod. Initially sharing the same spiritual values and the same health-conscious lifestyle – both were vegetarians, both practiced yoga – the brash, hard-living celebrity culture held little interest for either of them.
With so much in common, astrologers would expect to find a particularly strong and harmonious link between the planet Venus – the planet that describes how and what we love – in their respective birth charts. And so it was here.
With Paltrow’s Venus in Leo and Martin’s Venus in Aries resonating harmoniously at exactly the same degree, in terms of their likes and dislikes these two were pretty much in sync at the start of their relationship. Destined to be best buddies as well as lovers, each confirmed their relationship was successful for so long because primarily they are ‘very good friends’. With this astrological connection, neither is ever likely to end up hating the other, no matter what eventually comes to pass.
Or as Different as Chalk and Cheese?
Ironically, however, as time went by, it was the growing differences in their evolving attitudes towards health and spirituality that eventually created a giant chasm between them and brought their marriage to an end. As Gwyneth became increasingly immersed in the Kabbalah religion and more obsessive about her strict health routine (with natal Mars in Virgo square Saturn she’s a hard-working self-disciplinarian), it’s likely that Chris started to feel more and more limited and alienated.
Her natal Saturn (the planet of restriction and discipline) opposing his Neptune (the planet of spiritual ideals) may, in his eyes, have slowly turned her into a hard task master, 'slave-driving' him, and their children, into an ascetic lifestyle that didn't fit with his true values and beliefs, and from which he began to seek escape.
In turn, Paltrow was reportedly becoming ever more discontented with the lack of attention she was receiving from Martin. With his natal Saturn conjunct her Venus in Leo (although this is a wide 10 degree conjunction, in a marriage relationship it will have made itself strongly felt), it is likely that Gwyneth will have begun to feel increasingly neglected.
A woman, like Gwyneth, with a Leo Venus, has an ongoing hunger for applause and attention – something her Saturn partner will find difficult to satisfy, especially as time goes by and he begins to take her increasingly for granted. As transiting Neptune squaring her natal Neptune made her more acutely aware of her deep longings – and her partner’s inability to fulfill them – despite her best efforts to keep their relationship on track, she had to finally accept it could no longer work.
Torn Apart by Their Mid-Life Crises
The infamous mid-life crisis – that period of middle-age angst which hits all of us some time between our mid thirties and our early forties – is notorious for throwing even the happiest of relationships into utter turmoil.
Astrologically, the mid-life crisis (crisis = ‘turning point’) can be defined by three major outer planet transits – Uranus (the planet of freedom) opposition natal Uranus; Neptune (the planet of ideals) square natal Neptune and Pluto (the planet of self-transformation) square natal Pluto.
During these cycles, as we begin questioning our life at a very deep level – seeing it (perhaps for the very first time) for what it really is, how it may be limiting us and tying us down, or how it is falling short of our loftiest dreams and aspirations – even the most perfect of partners can start to appear lacking and we may finally resolve to ditch the old for the new.
For Gwyneth and Chris it was the simultaneous hit of a Neptune square (in her case) and a Pluto square (in his case) that spelled the kiss of death to their once blissful union. Under the influence of these transformative cycles, a couple will change gradually yet quite profoundly – so much so that eventually one or both of them may end up no longer recognizing the person they originally fell in love with.
There’s not necessarily any kind of acrimony or betrayal and quite often both people will retain a deep affection for each other. It’s just that, because they’re both seeing the purpose of their life, and what they want out of it, in entirely new ways, they may no longer feel the same sense of personal connection they once did.
So it was that, by the Spring of 2014, with Chris’s Pluto square gathering momentum and Gwyneth’s Neptune square finally completed, they made the joint decision to embark on a process of ‘conscious uncoupling’ – a New Age technique for separating or divorcing in the most enlightened and kindest possible way.
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