• Richelle Steyn

FASCINATING SOULS SERIES #1: Ghislaine Maxwell on Trial in NYC

The needs of the soul, not the desires of the personality, orchestrate our lives.


The trial of Ghislaine Maxwell starts on Monday 29th November 2021. She was arrested and imprisoned on the 2 July 2020, charged with six crimes (specifically relating to the period 1994-1997) including sex trafficking, enticing minors (grooming) and committing perjury. She has denied all charges.

Ghislaine is the youngest of nine children ('sprat' to her family) of late British socialites Robert and Elizabeth Maxwell. She earned a Masters degree in Marine Biology from Oxford University. Ghislaine is a licensed helicopter pilot, has a submarine license, is fluent in four languages and is a trained Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). Prince Dimitri of Yugoslavia described her as "the best possible company .. wit, intelligence, and a sense of mystery”. This is far from the profile of a typical sex offender. How does a wealthy, intelligent socialite end up at this devastating crossroads in the 60th year of her life? Is there a story of why from the perspective of soul and if so, what is it?

Fig 1: Ghislaine Maxwell's Birth Chart

With her big Saturn-Capricorn-10th house signature, Ghislaine is socially ambitious and an individual of social consequence. While the Capricorn archetype is connected to social law and social conditioning, the shadow of Capricorn, the repression of universal (natural) law is according to Jeffrey Wolf Green the causative factor for all “modern ailments” such as neurosis, psychosis, schizophrenia, the serial killer and the child rapist (Green, 2014).

"Soul" is not a thing but a quality or a dimension of experiencing life and ourselves.

It has to do with depth, value, relatedness, heart and personal substance.


The south lunar node (mother and early family life / seeding consciousness) on the Midheaven (MC/angles) opposite the Moon (mother) on north lunar node IC 4th House (domestic lineage) suggests that mother themes dominate Maxwell's consciousness. Mother is the first person we emotionally attach to and attachment (emotional bonding) central to how we relate and belong in the world. In a three degree conjunction with the Sun (father), Ghislaine's Mars (individuality) is occulted (hidden). In Damian Wilson's article on the book "Fall: The Mystery of Robert Maxwell" he points out that "despite fraudster Robert Maxwell’s frequent cruelty, Ghislaine remained a doting daughter, having learned her misguided loyalty to grotesque men from her mother, who suffered years of terrible abuse from the man she worshipped" (Wilson, 2021). Wilson points to Ghislaine's mother Betty (Elizabeth) Maxwell as the role-model for Ghislaine's "cult leader-like obeisance" (the south lunar node's (Aquarius) ruler Uranus 4th (home/mother) at zero degrees Virgo (service) is in an exact trine with Mars conjunct the powerful 8th House Sun (father)).

It was Maxwell's polished British accent together with her classy style that disarmed the young girls she hand-picked for Epstein. Maxwell quickly gained their trust (Moon on the lunar nodes). She was a young-mother-older-sister figure with a terrible twist. Damian Wilson highlights "Ghislaine’s denial of wrongdoing, as Epstein and his friends trafficked underage girls around the world for sex. A silent onlooker with eyes only for one man, to such an extent that she cannot admit to herself that he is capable of such aberrant behavior, or the fact that she acted as his enabler".

Wisdom is the marriage of the intellect's longing for truth and the soul's acceptance

of the labyrinthine nature of the human condition.


Maxwell's idiosyncratic Uranus-Mars trine signature can speak to both the repression of sexuality due to social conditioning and to peer/group-pressured sexual activity. This signature can also manifest in boredom of ordinary "garden-variety" sex and a need for progressively more eccentric or "unusual" sexual behavior to get turned on. Sex with minors, as well as bi-sexuality could both be a manifestation of this signature.

Ghislaine has the same mercurial talent for languages and chameleon-like ability to shift and change identities to better serve her needs and the demands of her current context and situation - just like her father and Epstein (Gemini ascendant and ruler Mercury conjunct the Sun).

When looking for clues as to why, Neptune square the lunar nodal axis is a red-flag with it's dissociation from common sense, denial, escapism and lack of boundaries. Neptune is also the puppy-dog that loves you unconditionally and eagerly jumps up for attention and affection despite being repeatedly slapped down. Neptune-Scorpio's symbolism of the Faustian bargaining with the devil, illusions of invincibility and omnipotence are easily recognizable in the Maxwell-Epstein story.

Fig 2: Image courtesy Netflix's documentary Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich.

In Maxwell's birth chart, Neptune is exactly to the minute opposite Ceres (Demeter) the mythological goddess of the harvest, feast and famine, mother of raped and abducted Persephone. Persephone the maiden, became the queen of the underworld after her abduction by Hades (Pluto) which happened with the approval of her father (Zeus / Jupiter). Alan Clay regards Ceres as a higher octave of the Moon (another type of mother archetype). Clay points out that the higher octaves are less focused on ego development and more focused on ego disruption or disturbing consciousness for spiritual transformation. Consciousness is personal as well as collective, especially when associated with the Ceres (Demeter) archetype . Ceres brought famine and drought to an entire world to free her daughter.

It is clear that rape and abduction are traumatizing both personally and collectively (consciousness). It is more controversial though to consider this trauma and disturbance of consciousness as a catalyst for spiritual transformation. When I look at Virginia Giuffre, her activism via her non-profit Victims Refuse Silence and the work she is doing to convict her own and other sex-traffickers like Prince Andrew, it is clear she has empowered herself despite her traumatic experience in this lifetime. Giuffre is another fascinating soul and a spiritual warrior worthy of a separate study. Her birth chart communicates many lifetimes of trauma and victimization (Pluto Saturn conjunction square Mars and Neptune on her south lunar node inconjunct Mars). Her breakthrough in this lifetime has come as a result of lifetimes of struggle.

Trauma erodes psychic, physical and spiritual immunity and a compromised immunity attracts further predators and victimization - a vicious cycle difficult to exit once caught up in it. Think of an injured member of the herd in the animal kingdom - they are quickly taken out by predators. Neptune symbolizes immunity - psychic (psyche), spiritual and physical. Trauma is stored in the epigenome and passed down for generations through our lineage. Trauma markers are present in the epigenome at birth communicating an ancestral history of trauma. Building immunity and consciousness is key to breaking out of victimization and victim mentality.

Ghislaine Maxwell's loaded lunar nodal axis communicates a repeating, somewhat intractable soul-pattern across lifetimes. The Aquarius-Leo axis is the axis of mastery, of humans becoming gods, of conquerors and the conquered. The higher purpose of the axis is nobility (noble heart), being a servant of life, leading through creativity and inspiration - not collecting slaves and serving yourself. The danger of this axis is arrogance, ego-inflation and a loss of perspective - delusions of grandeur and messianic complexes. Jupiter in Aquarius inflates, expands, spreads and rises and Neptune in Scorpio is a deep, intense, unbounded abyss. Common to both is belief and the danger of being carried away by illusion and wishful thinking. Belief needs to be constantly tested against reality else life can veer horribly off-track as it did with Maxwell and Epstein. This trial is Maxwell's reality-check (transiting Saturn on the MC, see Fig. 6).

The grand cross created by Ghislaine's luminaries and planets in angular aspect to her nodes, maps very closely (within orb) to Neptune's planetary nodes and nodal bendings (squares). This symbolically soaks Ghislaine Maxwell's soul story in the Neptunian evolutionary archetype and themes. Neptune is the collective unconscious - unbounded, beyond space and time. It's a veritable twilight zone intersecting with three dimensional earth. Sex-trafficking, the classical Roman orgies, Marquis de Sade's type of unbounded debauchery, Epstein's orgy island; Red-light districts and vestal virgin history and mythology.

Fig 3: The years on the diagram communicate when transiting Neptune was on Neptune's own Planetary Nodes. The degrees are Neptune's Planetary Nodes for 25th December. (Maxwell's solar return) using Bradley Naragon's nifty Evolutionary Astrology: Planetary Node Cycles (2011)

Incredibly, Epstein's lunar nodes are even more closely aligned to Neptune's nodes (inverted) and his Jupiter square his lunar nodes is on Neptune's south bending activating in opposition Ghislaine's Neptune. Their relationship synastry (astrological birth chart alignment) communicates a history of shared past lives (lunar nodes aligned, Maxwell's Moon on Epstein's south lunar node, Epstein's Pluto on Maxwell's north lunar node, Sun-Saturn conjunction, Saturn squares etc.). Maxwell's Neptune in Scorpio signature can neutralize sexual development, expression and desire - or encourage unbounded sexual expression, depending on her own level of personal sexual evolution. Jupiter in Taurus has a big sexual appetite and Epstein would not only have merely activated Maxwell sexually but activated unbounded sexual expression i.e. transgression of personal-social boundaries.

Interesting to see the common repeating signatures between Epstein and Maxwell's charts, the Uranus trine Mars (sexual eccentricity), the "plutonic" Mars-Venus conjunction and most notably the Jupiter angular to the lunar nodes, present in the charts of Manson, Milosevic, Hitler, Amin and other historical characters labelled as megalomaniacs.

Epstein's Pluto on Maxwell's north lunar node indicates emotional manipulation, enmeshment and even betrayal and his Neptune Saturn conjunction suggests someone unfettered by social norms and laws. He would have challenged (square) Maxwell in this respect.

Fig 4: Ghislaine Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein Relationship Synastry

In 1994, at the start of the three year period of alleged crimes for which Maxwell is being charged, transiting Jupiter takes a retrograde at 14.39 degrees Scorpio, on Neptune's northern bending and Maxwell's Neptune, fully activating the destabilizing component of Maxwell's consciousness (the square to her lunar nodes) and the unconscious forces of Neptune's northern bending. (Transiting Sedna (higher octave of Ceres) also features prominently). Neptunian themes of escapism, delusion, illusion, unbounded (without boundaries), omnipotence and dissociation from common sense would be repeatedly amplified by transiting Jupiter's three direct hits. Transiting Pluto on the transiting north lunar node communicates a theme of enmeshment and manipulation (souls at a crossroad). Transiting Saturn square the transiting lunar nodes is a karmic red-flag and signals the potential for huge ethical and moral issues. This is when Maxwell lost her way.

Fig 5: 1994 Jupiter Retrograde Transit on Ghislaine Maxwell's Natal Chart

Saturn symbolizes judgement, karma, being tested (do you measure up) as well as death (the grim reaper / time is up). Maxwell's Saturn square Epstein's also communicates unfinished karmic business. There is lack of certainty as to when Maxwell first met Epstein, but "reconnected" (if not for the first time) around the first pass of her first Saturn return. Maxwell's arrest in 2020 happened on the retrograde pass of her second Saturn return. At the start of the 2021 Trial, transiting Saturn (judgement, reality-check) dominates Maxwell chart on her MC square transiting Uranus on Neptune's southern bending. It will be interesting to see what Uranus (elite, cult, humanitarian) brings to light from the depths of the Neptunian collective unconscious. Transiting Mars (fight, defend, separation, loss, death) once again prominently square Maxwell's lunar nodes (transiting Mars also featured prominently when she was arrested (loss of freedom)).

Most importantly, transiting Pluto is now (2021) closing in on a conjunction with Maxwell's natal Saturn which is a big deal. The same archetypal energies of 2019-2020 (transiting Pluto-Saturn conjunction), associated with Epstein's death and Maxwell's arrest are repeated, communicating an exposing of ethical misuse and abuse of power (corruption).

High drama with Venus in the retrograde shadow at the start of the Trial. Venus together with the ruler of Capricorn (Saturn) can be said to be a component of the pedophilia signature astrologically. Venus additionally coming into a conjunction with transiting Pluto (three times) suggesting the possible resurrection of victims or witnesses from Epstein and Maxwell's past, potentially playing a karmic role in the trial.

The all important third and final exact transiting Saturn-Uranus square making hardcore collective demands to disrupt the existing social status quo, takes place on Maxwell's birthday (solar return).

Fig 6: Ghislaine Maxwell's Trial Date 29 November 2021

How do we observe these rites of the soul that are painful and even life-threatening?


Is there a story of why from the perspective of soul and if so, what is it?

Victimization and "victim mentality" are associated with the Neptune archetype but so too are spirituality and surrender. These two seemingly disparate symbolic manifestations of the Neptune archetype make sense only when realizing that the archetype itself undergoes a process of evolution as described in Fig. 7 below. It's not that victimization is instrumental for spiritual progress. Rather, the experience of trauma sets in motion a series of circumstances which provide a rich source of material for self, social and human insight and realization. It's this experience of insight and realization that shifts consciousness and becomes instrumental for spiritual progress.

Fig 7: Milestones derived from Maurice Fernandez's Book Neptune, the 12th House and Pisces

Being naïve about the existence of evil is a Neptune in Scorpio phenomenon.

Naivety is another Neptunian keyword - so is wishful-thinking. When someone offers to connect you with the right people (modelling, acting, business etc.), pay for your education, pay for your travel around the world in exchange for a massage - don't be naïve, realize you are bargaining with the devil. Even if you sense something is off, naivety is thinking "how bad can it be - I can handle it" i.e. not realizing just how bad things can get (the true nature and character of evil). What you learn through trauma (the hard way) is to acknowledge the existence of evil - and avoid it at all costs (the evolutionary lesson). You lose your naivety and become street smart. You learn to recognize vampires, predators and parasites that steal the beautiful light of your soul (consciousness). Fairytales end with children being cooked and eaten as a warning - wake-up!

The difficulty with Neptunian trauma is spiritual crises - being angry with God for not protecting you and allowing bad things to happen to you. The problem with spiritual crises is that it's unconscious (until made conscious through healing work). A common way to manage the pain of trauma is to escape into substance use and abuse (alcohol, drugs etc.) or any other addictive behavior (sex, food etc.). Rather, recovery from victimization and trauma requires building your psychic, spiritual and physical immunity (consciousness).

When breaking free or legitimizing locked fantasies, experience must be based on consciousness not blind desire for freedom, indulgence or excess.

Ghislaine Maxwell could be said to be defying her fears in crossing sexual boundaries in her relationship with Epstein. Crossing boundaries is healthy if done with consciousness and when grounded in consent, truth, intimacy, love, solidarity and trust. Neptunian euphoria is a term used to describe a type of high generated by unconscious, intoxicated Marquis de Sade type depravity (think Epstein's orgy island). Unless sexuality is approached with integrity and consciousness it pollutes and attracts negativity, crises and consequence (karma / Saturn).

Experiences of losses and powerlessness serve to humble the ego and spirit.

Maxwell has had more than her fair share of ego humbling experiences in her lifetime. After four years of relationship with Count Gianfranco Cicogna he unceremoniously dumped her for a relatively short affair with a television celebrity. Heartbroken she moved to New York to work with her father. After his death, the entire Maxwell family were disgraced by revelations of his fraud. Despite his poor treatment of her she was heartbroken about her father's death. It was at this time she reconnected with Epstein which was a milestone in the start of her journey of empowerment.

Fig 8: Headline from the New York Post dated March 2000

This is the headline from the New York Post in March 2000. The question is how did she empower and resurrect herself? Did she do so by using others as a means to serve her agenda and normalizing in her mind predatory and abusive behavior? These are classical Neptune in Scorpio questions and scenarios. The lesson to be learnt on a soul level is to understand that leading life in truth is the only real sustainable path to empowerment. Until we learn these lessons we will be humbled through losses and powerlessness.

Fear of rejection may keep one psychologically weak and tolerant of abuse from a partner.

Fig 9: Conchita Sarnoff providing a glimpse of Maxwell's relationship with Epstein.

In the same way that her mother tolerated Robert Maxwell's many indiscretions, could it be that Ghislaine Maxwell avoided in her mind the painful reality of rejection by colluding with Epstein in a way that served him? Fear of rejection is disempowering and erodes psychic immunity and self-worth. The evolutionary lesson is to identify and heal rejection wounds in order to build immunity and self-worth to enable us to choose conscious closure of love relationships that no longer align with our truth.

In the serenity prayer, Neptune is the part about "accepting the things we cannot change". Neptune is the fate component of the fate and free-will interplay of life. Fate is the tsunami destroying everything in it's paths despite our best efforts. Fate is the unfolding of universal law (Neptune). Neptune teaches us that there are forces we cannot change - like our mortality - things we need to accept and surrender to the inevitability of. When we learn this difficult Neptunian lesson of surrender - accepting things beyond our control (universal law), we change and our consciousness shifts and evolves.


If you're interested in following the FASCINATING SOULS SERIES and reading more about Ghislaine Maxwell on Trial, be sure to subscribe to the newsletter.


Selected References

Clay, A. Sedna Consciousness. The Soul's Path of Destiny. New Zealand: Art Media, 2018

Crawford, G. 2018. graycrawford.net The Planetary Nodes of Neptune

Fernandez, Maurice. Neptune The 12th House and Pisces. Victoria: Trafford, 2004.

Fernandez, Maurice. Neptune The 12th House and Pisces. United States: River of Stars Publication, 2018.

Green, Jeff. Pluto The Evolutionary Journey of the Soul Volume 1. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1994.

Green, JW. schoolofevolutionaryastrology.com Saturn, Capricorn and the 10th house: Chaos and Dark Eros

Wilson, D. 2021. rt.com A new biography of her monstrous father reveals why Ghislaine Maxwell will never throw dead lover Jeffrey Epstein to the wolves

About the Author Richelle Steyn is a South African astrologer and freelance online business consultant. Richelle certified as an Evolutionary Astrologer through The Comprehensive Diploma Course (Maurice Fernandez). Before studying astrology she had a full-time career in Corporate Information Technology (IT). Richelle has an Honors degree in Psychology and a Post Graduate Diploma in Community Psychological Practice, both from the University of Johannesburg. Visit her website for more details.

(C) Copyright 2021 Richelle Steyn. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be used or reproduced without the written permission of the author. www.richellesteyn.co.za

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