Bio Shorts | David Lynch

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Man on the Moon

Industrial Symphony No. 1 is a very ethereal musical play created by David Lynch. It features music by Angelo Badalamenti with vocals by Julee Cruise. It was performed in 1989, after Wild At Heart and foreshadowing, musically and thematically, the Twin Peaks series. I missed it on its release to VHS in 1990 but it’s also been released in the Lime Green Box Set and a lower quality version floats around on YouTube (below).

The Moon through a Loud Speaker

The irrational is pervasive in Lynch’s work.  Watching his films is akin to a swim through the sphere of Yesod on the kabbalistic tree of life.  It is of little wonder to find the Moon as the loudest and most influential planet in his life.

General Lunar Prominence

There are many factors that make the Moon the most prominent planet in Lynch’s life in a general way as if her volume has been turned up. The sect light is the Moon (Lynch was born at night), and she is above the horizon in a feminine sign (i.e. in haym). Luna is very prominent as she is strongly advancing on the MC (conjunct MC within 2 degrees). The Moon is in the place of the Good Spirit (the 11th house; pertaining to friends and social benefit). She’s also in the place of Love (i.e. place occupied by the Lot of Love, one of the 4 principal lots, and actually within 2.5 degrees of the lot).

Lynch with 4 Principal Lots
Lynch’s Natal Chart with 4 Principal Lots (CTRL-click to enlarge)

Personal Lunar Prominence

The Moon is also one of the planets that impact the character and sense of self. The Moon’s twelfth-part is in the most important place, the 1st house, which pertains to the self. She also is a lord of the Ascendant (participating triplicity lord with a regard by sextile). Additionally, she regards and rules the lord of the Ascendant (Mars in Cancer) and she is conjunct the twelfth-part of Fortune.

Lynch with twelfth-parts
Lynch’s Natal Chart with twelfth-parts (CTRL-click to enlarge)

Lunar Themes

Lunar themes of vivid depths of subjective experience, instinct, and irrationality permeate Lynch’s work. Also, lunar themes of the familiar and habitual (i.e. sentimentality) are also apparent in his life and work.  I am thinking particularly of his repeated use of familiar actors, the non-linearity of his work,  and the thematic grappling with the relationship between role and real-life. He also explores the complex and paradoxical subconscious evocations of rural life and nature, as well as the influence of dreams, visions, coincidences, and spiritual experiences on life.

Diving Deeper into Lynch’s Birth Chart

His birth data is rated AA for accuracy. I also provide his chart with twelfth-parts and with four principal lots.

Lynch Natal Chart
David Lynch’s Natal Chart

More on the Moon

The Moon is in Virgo, a mutable sign, thus the Moon tends to express through interactivity, as opposed to through powerful changes (cardinal) or stable developments (fixed).  Virgo is an earth sign, evoking the land, tradition, and the body.  Virgo’s ruler, Mercury, is the messenger. He is in the 3rd House, the Joy of the Moon. The Moon is herself a traveler, while Mercury delivers and communicates. This adds a lot of movement, interaction, communication, and consultation to the prominent relationship between the Moon and Mercury. The Moon rules Cancer, the 9th house, which is the place of God, pertaining to truth-seeking, spirituality, and foreigners.

Mercury in Capricorn with Sun and Venus

Mercury is in phasis and is most directly influenced by Venus and the Sun, with which he is assembled in the third house, Capricorn. Venus pertains to love and art; the Sun to influence and publicity.  This is especially so with Venus, as she is most closely assembled with Mercury and rules his bound (as well as being a triplicity lord of Capricorn).  The combination of Venus, Mercury, and the Sun in a place of connection and conveyance is evocative of many important professional aspects of Lynch’s life, from the artistic direction of important projects to his bold use of music.

Capricorn, the 3rd house, is mostly benefic in the chart. It is occupied by the sect benefic and dominated (right-side square) by Jupiter. Meanwhile, Mercury applies an opposition to both malefics, and it is ruled by an out of sect Saturn (in the 9th house of God). This lends an aura of foreboding ethereal terror over matters of Mercury, Venus, the Sun, and the 3rd House.

Echoes in Life and Work

The Moon pertains to family and childhood, especially the mother. The Virgoan Mercurial influence and prominence of the 3rd house fits with Lynch’s mother being an English tutor and his father and agricultural research scientist. Additionally, the prominence of the 3rd House, the Moon, mutability, and Mercury, all evoke travel and movement. This fits with his experience of moving a half dozen times with his family as a child and embarking on some formative trips as a young adult.  The land, tradition, the elderly, fear, and handicap are all very Saturnine themes evoked in his work. They are linked with the supernatural and lurking in the shadows, contrasted with human innocence.

Lynch Natal Chart
David Lynch’s Natal Chart

Malefics in the Lunar House of God

When it comes to personality analysis, the main indicators are the lord of the Ascendant (Mars in this case), Mercury, and the Moon.  Mars is in sect and in a good place in the chart, but conjunct the out of sect malefic, Saturn. It is also strongly influenced by both benefics (benefics are in the stakes of Mars), and ruled by the very benefic Moon, while in the bound of the benefic Jupiter.  The overall sense with Mars is of an ambitious nature and one which can be irritable and rebellious, but very beneficial and noble (sect, good place, benefic influence). Yet Mars is also touched by the dark, dreadful, and macabre (Saturn).  All in all, there is incredible complexity to the character because of all the planetary influences on the lord of the Ascendant.  Mars additionally occupies the 9th Place, the House of God, drawing Lynch to spiritual matters.

The 9th House of God

Spirituality itself is a complex and prominent matter in Lynch’s life. On the one hand, there would seem to be animosity toward religion given the strong association between spirituality and evil. This is signified by the presence of both malefics in the 9th, the retreat of Jupiter in the 12th house of the Evil Spirit. Also, there is an identification with rebellious Mars and intellectual Mercury. However, there is an overwhelming prominence and personal investment in matters of spirituality, truth, belief, and dream in his life.

Note that most of the planets in his chart (5 of 7) are in the 9th and 3rd houses. This includes both Mars and Mercury. Also, the sect light (the Moon) rules the 9th, lending additional prominence and associating spirituality with her significations.  While Mercury is strong in some ways, it lacks the overwhelming pervasiveness of the more subjective and irrational lunar influence over the life.  Through twelfth-parts, we also find the identification with the Moon and Venus, as their parts are in the Ascendant. Additionally, we find Jupiter, the planet of faith and spirit, playing a more prominent role in career and administrative aspects of the life, with its twelfth-part positioned in the 10th of actions and authority.

Lynch with twelfth-parts
Lynch with twelfth-parts


Fear-inducing (Saturn) and violent (Mars) spiritual entities (9th place) tended over by nature, night, and instinct (the Moon) are frequent themes in his work. The connection with art pertains to the fact that the malefics oppose and rule his Venus, the goddess of beauty and art.  Venus is in the 3rd House, the Joy of the Moon, in the nocturnal house of Saturn (Capricorn), in the bound of Mars, and with the Moon as the primary triplicity lord.  Her twelfth-part is in the 1st House, that of the self, in the nocturnal house of Mars (Scorpio), in the bound of Jupiter.

Venus is the primary planet pertaining to his aesthetic and it is fitting to find her dominated by subjective and spiritually-tinged maleficence (Mars and Saturn in the 9th, in the bound of Jupiter, ruled by the Moon) and irrationality (Venus in the Joy of the Moon, general pervasiveness of the Moon, Venus and Moon twelfth-parts co-present in the 1st of self and identity).  The 3rd house journey/transportation themes also occur frequently in Lynch’s work.  Wild At Heart, Lost Highway, and even The Straight Story are road movies, while main characters are often visiting outsiders.

A Couple Key Years

1966: Age 20

In my opinion, a pivotal year in Lynch’s life was 1966, when he moved to Philadelphia to attend an art school which held more promise than the last one, got his future wife pregnant, created his first short film (Six Men Getting Sick), and became acquainted with the fear of crime-ridden urban living.

9th House Profection

He would have been Age 20 at the time, thus the annual profection would have been to his 9th House, Cancer, occupied by the malefics, Mars and Saturn, with the Moon as lord of the year. These are all key influential planets in his chart and especially in terms of relationship and artistic matters (Venus).  Lunar years are typically quite varied and eventful, as the Moon is prominent and moves quickly.  In this case, the Moon herself profected to the 7th of partnership, ruled by Venus.  It was as if in this year Lynch stepped into the house of the Moon, finding Mars and Saturn there creating fear and violence. The Moon lorded over everything as its guide, in terms of pregnancy, bonds, and the artistic promises of the 3rd house.

Solar Return Moon in the 3rd

At the time of the solar return, the Moon was in the 3rd house, conjunct natal Mercury. This put a spotlight on the work of that house.  Mars and Venus of the return were both in the 4th of home and family, while Saturn was in the 5th of children just as Saturn’s natal twelfth-part is. This signaled weight and apprehension in the house of children.

Lynch 1966 Solar Return
David Lynch’s 1966 Solar Return Transits
Zodiacal Releasing of Spirit to Cancer

The importance of a year in terms of one’s professional objectives is primarily seen through zodiacal releasing of Spirit.  In October of 1965 the 1st Level of Spirit’s releasing made its first transition from its starting period in Gemini to its new period in Cancer where it would stay until 1990.  This started off with a 2nd Level period also in Cancer until October 1967.  Therefore, both of the two main levels of Spirit’s releasing were to the 9th House, Cancer, ruled by the Moon, occupied by both malefics, and additionally activated at the Age 20 profection.

Venus-Jupiter and Mercury Activation by Planetary Years

The activations by planetary year were also interesting.  Age 20 is most prominently a Mercury year, while also a year in which Venus-Jupiter (8+12) relationships come into play, such as his Jupiter in sign and bound of Venus and dominating her, signifying artistic benefit and children (both planets confer children, and both are the main rulers of the House of Children, the 5th, Pisces).

1990: Age 44

9th House Profection

There were many other pivotal years in his career but 1990 stands out as particularly important and prolific.  He won the Palme d’Or at Cannes for Wild at Heart, Twin Peaks was hitting TV audiences, he released the Industrial Symphony No. 1, and his early paintings were in an exhibition.  Interestingly, 1990 marked another profection to the 9th House, Cancer.  The Moon, lord of the year, was transiting through the 1st house of the Self at the time of the solar return, which was also a Venus return, as Venus was at 27 degrees Capricorn in the return, almost exactly conjunct her natal position at 26 Capricorn, strongly realizing Venus’s artistic birth promises.

Lynch 1990 Solar Return
Lynch 1990 Solar Return
Zodiacal Releasing of Spirit to Leo

When we look at the releasing of Spirit for 1990, we find that it marked the next Level 1 transition. It went from Cancer (the period which started in 1965) to Leo, the 10th house, ruled by the Sun.  Thus this next major transition in his professional life marked a new period, ruled by the Sun. The Sun is with Venus in the 3rd and the Sun rules the 10th house of actions, honors, and authority.  It was as if Lynch had received his king’s (the 10th and the Sun both pertaining to rulership/kings).


Image Attributions: Eraserhead poster image (cropped) is in the public domain.



Blogger interested in all things astrological, especially Hellenistic, medieval, Uranian, and asteroid astrology.

3 thoughts on “Bio Shorts | David Lynch

  • January 20, 2021 at 5:57 am

    Great post. I absolutely love Lynch.

    I know your MO is not so much to use house lord occupying house type configurations (this comes later with Rhetorius and Masha’allah), but I think it is worth stating how the 4th lord Saturn is in the 9th suggesting the topic of long distance travel associated with family and home.

    I would make a lot out of this partile Saturn/Mars conjunction that is opposed to Venus and Mercury and Sun. For one, he really hates to provide explanations to his creative projects (Saturn opposed to Mercury Venus). He has also had many frustrations and setbacks with numerous unrealized projects (Mars/Saturn showing the frustration and inability to overcome obstacles afflicting Venus the natural significator of art as well as the 5th lord Jupiter) Indeed, there is a whole Wikipedia page devoted to his unrealized projects which number to at least 11 different television shows and films. He has produced 3 television shows all of which ended before he finished them – Twin Peaks after 2 seasons because he was forced to reveal the killer – a decision that he regrets (Saturn). On the Air was cancelled after 3 episodes. And then Mulholland Drive was shot as a pilot but was not picked up by ABC and was then funded by StudioCanal to be completed as a feature film. Dune was also a huge creative frustration for him as he did not have final cut. Again and again, he clashes (Mars) against authoritarian forces (Saturn) who want more control over his productions or otherwise just flat out reject it.

    Also, some people absolutely hate his films and they receive negative reviews (3rd lord of communication Saturn afflicting Venus and 5th lord Jupiter – so they hate his creative works and Saturn also afflicts the ASC lord – sometimes people talk and write as though Lynch himself is sick and twisted). Lynch famously advertised Lost Highway with a Two Thumbs down from Siskel and Ebert.

    1966 began with a Jupiter/Jupiter firdaria activation which is his natal 5th lord (pertaining to creativity and children). In the 1966 SR, transiting Jupiter is conjunct his natal North Node and is also present with his North Node. So Jupiter as natal 2nd lord but occupying the 8th house with North Node in 1966 SR brings in funding for him with his Six Men Getting Sick short film, which allows him to later get funding to shoot the Alphabet Vimshottari Dasha (which functions as being more specific to charts) gives Sun/Sun period which indicates the beginning of a significant activation pertaining to actions/career.

    As far as 1990 being a big year for him – that is when Sun/Sun Firdaria kicks in. This repeats the theme of the Sun significations being prominent for that time period. Vimshottari Dasha is revealing too – it is North Node / North Node during this time period. North Node by itself would suggest more erratic events but also many opportunities, especially since it is ruled by Mercury and Mercury is applying to Venus and Sun. The North Node also suggests he receives significantly more funding (other people’s money) for his artistic projects and the North Node period overall itself emphasizes an increased focus on criminal activity, seemingly chaotic and non-linear narratives, and increased surrealism in his works (Twin Peaks, Lost Highway, Mulholland Drive, and Inland Empire).

    I find it very interesting that his Venus is in partile opposition to his Natal Syzygy in Cancer and his Jupiter is also in partile square.

  • April 21, 2018 at 2:55 pm

    Just as a little side note about Lynch’s spirituality; he is also very active in promoting Transcendental Meditation. He said his life was “hollow inside” until he started meditating. (Perhaps both malefics and the 12th part of Mercury [Bound lord of the asc] in the 9th are the reason for his initial spiritual emptiness.

    • April 21, 2018 at 7:51 pm

      Sounds about right as someone myself who has Mercury as the bound lord of my Ascendant with its twelfth-part in the 9th conjunct my natal Saturn.


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