The Relationship of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes – A study of the astrology of love

Last October, I was commissioned to begin a study of the astrology of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes, and an astrological evaluation of their relationship.

The timing was strange because by a huge coincidence, Saturn was transiting conjunct Sylvia Plath’s natal Moon on 7th October 2010! And Saturn transiting conjunct Moon is the special predictive condition in Vedic (or Indian) astrology known as Sade Sate (see: ). Sylvia’s Moon is at 8 deg Libra. And Saturn is again conjunct her Moon when it goes on station in June 2011 at 10 Libra.

Sylvia Plath’s poetry is consummate genius, but the terrible tragedy is that, I feel, it represents the quarrying of her grief at the unhappiness of her marriage to Ted Hughes, and it seems to me to be a last stand to compete with him. In fact, I feel her poetry is far superior to his.

Sylvia Plath was born on 27.10.1932 at 14.10 hrs in Boston USA.
Ted Hughes was born 17.08.1930 at 01.12 hrs, in Mytholmroyd, near Hebden Bridge in West Yorkshire, UK.

They met: Sat 25.2.1952, in the evening, in Cambridge. Ted Hughes records having a dream on their wedding eve about a pike fish. Did he know the relationship was doomed? Things did not go well.

Eleven years later, in grief at Ted’s infidelity with Assia Wevill, Sylvia committed suicide on 11.2.1963, at 04.30 hrs, in London, at the age of thirty, by putting her head in the gas oven.

The horrific coincidence is that Assia Wevill’s relationship with Ted Hughes ended in exactly the same way, in the same gas oven. Assia Wevill was born on 15.5.1927 in Berlin, and when she gassed herself, she also killed their little girl Shura (born 3.3.1965, at 21.55 pm, in London).

Ted Hughes did have an Astrologer of the time draw up a natal chart report for Shura. This is what the Astrologer wrote: ”There’d be a lot of fantasy,, pretending, Unreality and self deception, as well as willingness to be deceived by others”. The astrologer foretold Shura’s character: ”it’s possible that with the control that comes with age, this person will  begin to produce and be more creative, but I think this is a helof a chart to come with – a real crucifixion….I don’t feel this chart is very promising.” … ”There will be a severe loss in this person’s life –  death, accidents, etc in the family.”

Furthermore: Sylvia and Ted’s son Nicholas Hughes killed himself on 16.03.2009, at the age of forty-seven.

The purpose of the study I was asked to complete was to see what astrology has to say about these tragic lives and this terrible relationhsip.

However, the Purpose of this Blog is solely to see what the Vedic Astrology of Love and Marriage has to say about their relationship. This Blog focuses on their relationship as an entity in itself. It does not, therefore, at all focus on the astrology of their individual lives, which I will report on in later Blogs, save to say, here, that Sylvia Plath has in her birth chart a special indicator  in Vedic Astrology of having a problematic husband, namely that Jupiter in her birth chart is conjunct the South Node of the Moon. The South Node of the Moon is called Ketu in Vedic Astrology. Jupiter is the karaka (or Indicator) of ‘husband’ in a woman’s chart. To have Ketu conjunct a planet ‘spoils it’. The energy of Ketu is dissolution: a dissolving like knives. Women with Jupiter conjunct Ketu have very special love issues – as do men and women with Venus conjunct Ketu.

I want to convey to you that the Vedic Astrology of Love and Relationships starts of with a very sure ‘foundation declaration’. you can trust it. it’s succinct and accurate.  It offers a sure foundation to the evaluation of a relationship. It evaluates a relationship according to a range of key qualities qualities that Western Astrology can not encompass.

If a relationship fares badly in the Vedic foundation analysis, one would not bother to look further at the next step in the analysis of the relaitonhsip: the aspects between the planets, nor at the western psychodynamic astrology between the couple. If the foundation test fails, one would advise against the marriage.

This ancient, sure and valid statement of relationships is still available today in Vedic Astrology, and it now has a huge gift to bring to the modern West.

I routinely offer Relationship Reports, and also the Starwheel Workshops where there is an emphasis on Love and Relationships, where Depth Insight from the astrology is uniquely combined with demonstration of fast-acting depth-healing techniques such as Emotion Code, EFT, Metamorphic Technique, Quantum Touch and other healing methods. there is testimony to the accuracy and vlaue of the insight, and the power fo the healing in these workshops.

So, what does the ancient Vedic Astrology of Love and Relationships have to say about the relationship between Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes?

I now present a very abbreviated form of the Vedic Love and Relationship report I routinely offer (together with the western astrology of relationships) to my ‘love and relationship’ astrology clients, so here is the report as it applies to Sylvia and Ted’s relationship:

The Foundation of the Vedic Astrology of Love and Marriage is to combine the Moons of the couple (Vedic astrology says relationhsip compatibility can not accurately be determined from a comparison of the Suns of the couple, which is the standard approach used in western astrology. Our Sun is our ‘busniness self’, our ego; but it should be our Moons or our emotional bases that we compare to evaluate a relationship).

The Vedic method compares the Lunar Sign the Moon falls in at the moment of birth for each partner. There are 27 of these Lunar Signs (called Nakshatras) and they are unbelievably magical and valid.

Ted Hughes’ Moon is in the powerful Lunar Sign of Bharani. It’s power animal is the male elephant!
Sylvia Plath’s Moon is in the skillful but tricky and duplicitous Lunar Sign of Hasta whose power animal is the Female Buffalo.

Let’s look at how the Vedic Astrology of Love and Relationships rates this particualr relationship according to its standard evaluation headings:

FIRST THERE’S THE ISSUE OF RESPECT – Will the couple respect each other? This is also called Strii Dirga. This facet is crucial. Vedic Astrology says there is the capacity for Respect in Sylvia and Ted’s relationship. They would have started out with this quality.

NEXT THERE’S THE ISSUE OF WAVELENGTH – Are you on the same wavelength? The score out of a maximum possible 36 points – and there are eight factors to score within these 36 points. Sylvia and Ted get 19 points out of the possible 36. Effectively the minimum viable score is considered to be 18. Not very good. Let’s look at the detail of the scoring they get within the eight subheadings under ‘Wavelength’. Note that the eight categories get more and more important as we work our way down the list, and the maximum number of possible points each facet can score gets higher too:

1. Positive Improvement: Will you tend towards positive improvement? (<1 point). This is also called ‘Mutation’ or ‘Varna Kuta’. They get the max possible one point.

2. Innate Giving: Will you innately give to each other? (<2 points). This is also called Vasya Kuta. Ted and Sylvia’s relationship gets one point out of a possible max of 2 points

3. Comfort: Will the man’s presence be felt as comfortable or threatening to the woman? ( <3 points). This is also called Tara or Dina Kuta. They get 1.5 points out of the maximum possible 3 points. This would be how things would have started off before the terrible issue of the imbalance of ‘assertive pressure’ inevitably set in – see below.

4. Sexual compatibility, also called Yoni Kuta. The better the Yonis between the couple the better they can act together and bond.  (<4 points). This is called Yoni Kuta. They get three points out of a possible four, so there was sexual magnetic attraction. But was it enough?

5. Friendliness: It’s so important to be friends – or are you neutral or even inimical towards each other? (<5 points). This is also called Graha Maitram Kuta. Their relationhsip get a dismal and terrible  0.5 points out of five. They were no way friends.

6. Affinity: Is there affinity between the two people’s temperaments? (<6 points). This is also called Gana Kuta and their relationhsip gets three points out of a possible six.

7. Constructivism: Can you be constructive together? Favorable scores predict prosperity and happiness; lowest scores can bring loss, ruin, quarreling and separation or loss of progeny (<7 points). This is also called Bha Kuta or Rashi Kuta, and Ted and Sylvia get a disasterous  NIL points out of a possible seven! This is a major blow: they can never act constructively together.

8. Humour Imbalance: Is there excess of the three ‘humours’: Kapha, Pitta or Vata in the relationship: there should be balance (<8 points). This is also called Nadi Kuta and their score is 8/8:  no problem with this facet.


The ‘Detriments are also known as the Doshas. The two Detriments are:

1. Obstruction: Will there be excessive obstructions that prevent your lives from completely coming together? This is also called Vedha Dosha or ‘Forbidden Combinations’, and they are not rated as being afflicted by ‘obstacles’.

2. Misfortune: Will the couple be ‘roped to’ misfortune or not, and will unexpected troubles arise between them? This system is also used to establish how compatible the energies of each partner’s chakras are with each other. This is also called Rajju Dosha – and there is no problem inherently identified here.


The Beneficial Supplements are also called the Upaskaras. They are:

1. Shared Sense of Purpose: Is there the needed ‘shared sense of purpose’? This is also called Mahendra. And the danger identified with Sylvia and Ted is that they do not have the necessary sense of purpose. Sense of purpose needs to be there moment by moment and long-term over a life-time. Having no innate shared sense of purpose can be overcome if there is Respect (which there was initially for these two) and if there is balance of assertive pressure (and for these two the imbalance of assertive pressure was horrific: see below).

2. Magnetic Attraction: Is there magnetic attraction between the couple. This is also called Vasya. If the magnetic attraction is one-way, this can be an horrifically dangerous ‘Fatal Attraction’.  For Sylvia and Ted there was no magnetic attraction. This is not in itself a problem. The fatal one-way attraction is the great danger here! And they did not have that.


Mars is a malefic. Its energy is good for getting things done but can be abrasive, harmful or destructive in relationship issues. This facet warns us if one partner is far more assertive than the other. This is also called Kuja Dosha.

If you have Mars in the first house in your natal chart, or Mars in the fourth House, you are a Kuja Dosha person, and you are just too abraisive for marriage to work. You would need insight, awareness and healing, and careful choice of marriage partner.

It is here that the hugest flaw in the relationship between Ted and Sylvia is very clearly and accurately identified. Ted is measured to be five times more assertive than Sylvia. This is a horrific and final impediment to a relationship. If only they could have been told that Vedic Astrology gives this verdict before it was too late!


On the basis of a very low wavelength score; the lack of innate constructivism, and no shared sense of purpose, plus, most especially the fact that Ted is irremediably immensely more powerfully assertive than Sylvia, no Vedic Astrologer would have recommended this relationship.

It would not have been OK even just as a friendship.

Most certainly, the marriage would not have gone ahead. It is a no-hoper. And what would have been so useful to Sylvia and Ted to know. Vedic Astrology could have pointed this out to them.

The big and irrevocably huge problem is Ted being five times as assertive than Sylvia, whereas there needs to be assertive balance. I do give out detailed Love and Relationship reports to my clients evaluating their existing or proposed relationships. Here’s the sort of things the report can say in a case of ‘assertive pressure imbalance’ like Sylvia and Ted’s:

Your horoscopes shows that the man asserts himself with more force than the woman. This can result in the woman feeling pushed into the corner or like she never has a say on a matter. She may also find it hard to say “no” when she needs to in face of the man’s stronger presence. The man may also feel that the woman is not rising to the occasion of building the best life together and this can cause him to get quite frustrated. If by chance the man is a very gentle person, then this can manifest a bit differently. He may simply be very stubborn and quietly insist on things going the way he deems fit. This can make it quite difficult for the woman’s concerns to be met and while her concerns may not be challenged, sufficient attention will not likely be given to them.


As a Footnote, let’s look very briefly at the ‘standard’ compatibility issues between the two lunar Signs:

Ted has Moon in Bharani Lunar Sign and his power animal is a male elephant.
Sylvia has Moon in Hasta and is a female buffalo.

Bharani and Hasta: Hasta (Sylvia) will be inviting and loving and will love you with nothing in return. Be careful how you treat them. They are insecure and in constant need of your approval. They get trapped into conventional lives yet yearn to be conventional. The insecurity makes them possessive and jealous.

Hasta and Bharani: Hasta (Sylvia) is fascinated by Bharani’s (Ted’s) sexual confi­dence. This is the area where Hasta is the least confident. Hasta will love Bharani without expecting anything in return. So Bharani would always need to be so careful with Hasta’s feelings, or they would destroy Hasta. A further problem is that both signs are possessive and stubborn. Hasta will always feel insecure, and always suspicious of Bharani’s friends.


Here is my favourite poem by Sylvia Palth:

Nick And The Candlestick – by Sylvia Plath

I am a miner.
The light burns blue.
Waxy stalactites
Drip and thicken, tears
The earthen womb
Exudes from its dead boredom.
Black bat airs
Wrap me, raggy shawls,
Cold homicides.
They weld to me like plums.
Old cave of calcium
Icicles, old echoer.
Even the newts are white,
Those holy Joes.
And the fish, the fish—-
Christ! They are panes of ice,
A vice of knives,
A piranha
Religion, drinking
Its first communion out of my live toes.
The candle
Gulps and recovers its small altitude,
Its yellows hearten.
O love, how did you get here?
O embryo
Remembering, even in sleep,
Your crossed position.
The blood blooms clean
In you, ruby.
The pain
You wake to is not yours.
Love, love,
I have hung our cave with roses.
With soft rugs—-
The last of Victoriana.
Let the stars
Plummet to their dark address,
Let the mercuric
Atoms that cripple drip
Into the terrible well,
You are the one
Solid the spaces lean on, envious.
You are the baby in the barn.