In the true spirit of Christmas a film shown at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival draws on the theme of war and the warriors’ dream of peace.
On Christmas Eve 1914 at several locations on the battlefront in the First World War, British, French and German solders observed a spontaneous ceasefire. Fighting each other from trenches barely 100 metres apart on a daily basis, they put down their weapons, climbed out of their trenches, shared coca and cigarettes and sang hymns together. Several days later the bloody battle resumed.
It is the spirit of that event that captured the imagination of French producer Christian Carion whose production ‘Merry Christmas’ drew a standing ovation at this year’s Cannes Festival and is topping France’s box office.
The controversial film opened in Berlin in November 2005. Despite its anti-war sentiments the British military agreed to it being sent to British soldiers stationed in Iraq. German troops have also taken in the movie — but ironically it will not be shown to French soldiers. The superiors on both sides viewed the ceasefire as treason.
What draws a producer to a particular event, or an actor to portray an historic personality? It is always interesting to discover the astrological connections between them.
Christian Carion was born on 4th January 1963 (time of birth unknown) in Cambrai, France.
With unknown times for both Carion and the event of Christmas Eve 1914, the accompanying charts are set up for sunrise. As mentioned the spontaneous ceasefire was observed in several locations so an indication of the place only, the Christmas Eve chart is also set for Cambrai as its location.
Both charts share a Capricorn Sun: in the 1914 chart the Sun is separating from an exact conjunction with Mars the planet of war. Both in turn form a tight opposition with Saturn and Pluto. Astrologically a very apt description of the climate and experience of war. Venus the planet of peace is 27ºScorpio closely trining Neptune: working towards the ideal of bringing the dream of peace and fraternisation between opposing forces.
While the 1914 Sun opposition Pluto speaks of powerful conflict, Carion’s Capricorn Sun is trine Pluto. This gives him the opportunity to turn the experience of the conflict into one that may heal rather than harm — together with Uranus, Carion’s Pluto opposes the healer Chiron together with visionary Jupiter.
The film is seen as controversial: Uranus. Uranus in Virgo is disposited by — and in mutual reception with — Mercury in Aquarius, the messenger. That the messenger is conjunct Saturn, Carion’s ruling planet we can see how he might so strongly be drawn to present this film.
Both sunrise charts have Moon in Aries — the Christmas Eve Moon at the very beginning of Aries and Carion’s Moon in the last degrees of Aries. With untimed charts, Carion could well have his Moon in Taurus and the 1914 chart Moon in Pisces.
But to me, the wonderful connection between these two has to be Venus, the planet at peace, in exactly the same degree in both charts. In the 1914 chart Venus trine Neptune dreams of peace, while Carion’s Venus separates from a conjunction with Neptune carrying the vision and the message of peace with it.
As we celebrate the spirit of Christmas at this time of year, the greeting ‘May Peace be with You and Goodwill to all Men’ takes on a rather poignant meaning.
© Carol Squires 2005