In a piece called "Old? Me? The Politics of Aging", screenwriter, playwright and lyricist Sherman Yellen wrote this a few days ago :
"Elizabeth Taylor and I share the same birth-date and birth year. She's been married seven, eight times and lived an extraordinary life, famous lovers, world-wide scandals, adventures, diamonds, Oscars. I've only been married once - most of my adventures were part of a splendid and tumultuous inner journey and I didn't make headlines or fortunes along the way. We share the same sign, the same chart, but oh, what a difference in our lives. So much for astrology."
It's a pity that, in all likelihood, readers of his otherwise excellent essay will store up that piece of information and use it in anti-astrology debates at some future date. It would be bad enough, if Mr Yellen's statement were true, but on searching I find, from information on his own website, he was born 25 February 1932, whereas Ms Taylor was born 27 February 1932. On top of that, the two were born an ocean apart, one on each side of the Atlantic. Two days, and no doubt several hours, and over 4000 miles is quite a big difference, astrologically and environmentally, just for starters.
Their natal charts are very similar, although minus rising sign and exact Moon position, both of which depend on exact time of birth - a whole lot of wiggle room remains. The two omissions are vitally important parts of any astrological chart.
There are millions, nay billions, of people being born on exactly the same date, same geographical location (or near enough) and leading totally different existences. That's life. Each individual uses his/her potential in millions and billions of different ways.
Suppose that Mr. Yellen's statement had been true, and he and Liz Tayor had been born on the same date, even in the same country and city: just because two or two thousand people are born with a certain blend of natural inclinations and characteristics doesn't set them on the same life path. Environment, education, family background, childhood experiences, genetic pre-disposition, health, accident, and all manner of other components are also part and parcel of the human condition. Astrology is only one strand of many in a tangled network.
"So much for astrology" ?
Plant two seeds out of the same packet in a patch of garden - one might grow tall, bloom well and long, seed plentifully, while the other, a few feet away, but in the shade of a large bush wouldn't fare as well, or may grow tall but fail to flower as profusely, or perhaps a neighbour's dog came along and dug up a few of its roots, or an infestation of ants spoiled its growth or.....a million and one things can happen to a seed, a plant and a person. What doesn't change though, is the inbuilt potential of a seed, or a person, to develop in certain ways.
The potential to be a loving partner to one, or eight, significant others, the wish to be part of a pair rather than solitary, the potential for artistry whether in acting or writing or painting. Without knowing either Elizabeth Taylor or Sherman Yellen intimately nobody can say how alike or unlike they are in nature. Their respective upbringing may well account for some very obvious differences in lifestyle. Possibly even more significant are the partners they have chosen, and natal charts of those partners. Those factors alone might cause paths of two people of similar inbuilt nature to diverge wildly.
Back to those important astrological differences which are present even when two are born on the same day. Exact time of birth is paramount. This piece of information would, unless both were born within the same few minutes, change things fairly dramatically chart-wise. Rising sign would be different for each, which means the way the world sees each of them and the way each sees the world would be quite different. Orientation of the angles would differ, perhaps putting certain planets in stronger positions in one or other chart. The position of the Moon is almost certainly going to be different in the two charts, and thus the potential for Moon making more or less aspects to other planets, bringing in yet more subtle, but clear differences in the two personalities
Mr. Yellen may or may not have been using a bit of journalistic licence when he stated that his birthdate and that of Liz Taylor were one and the same, but even if he genuinely believed they shared a birthday, his comment, "So much for astrology" was seriously misguided.