An astrologist uses mathematics to predict success, says Cassandra Gaisford
Despite having endured more than her fair share of suffering, Marianne O'Hagan is a woman who exudes warmth, compassion and a zest for life. Her traumatic childhood experiences, deep love of humanity and multiple job losses have guided Marianne to her true purpose in life, where she has carved out an impressive niche for herself as an astrologist.
"My twin sister and I were born into poverty during an air raid in south London at the time of the Second World War. Unlike my sister, I was born with clubfeet. My mother's first words, 'Oh what a shame', plagued me for years where I felt constantly ashamed for not being a 'normal' child," she says.
Lengthy, frequent and painful trips to the specialist to correct her feet meant she missed much of her schooling, and this along with an accident that left her deaf in one ear meant for most of her childhood she was told she was stupid. Naturally left-handed, raps on the hand designed to "encourage" her to use her right hand further hindered her ability to communicate.
Born under the sign of Taurus, Marianne dug her heels in and fought her way to success. She caught up on her schooling and mastered the ability to walk. But the trauma of her childhood scarred her self-esteem.
Marianne clearly remembers the day, during a period of deep questioning, that astrology became her life's purpose. "Mother was reading her daily horoscope.
I asked her what it meant, and she told me that everyone had a star sign and that mine was Taurus the Bull. I suddenly realised that I was the same as everyone else - we all had star signs and we all belonged. I felt a deep sense of knowing. I liked the idea that astrology believes we all are special and have unique gifts. It was at that moment that my love of astrology was born."
Marianne read voraciously on the subject; she coupled her reading with her love of mathematics and natural ability with numbers, and soon began drawing up astrology charts for her friends. She had an uncanny ability to predict people's behaviour and forecast how their patterns and planetary activity influenced their lives.
Marianne's passion for astrology remained a hobby for many years while she pursued more traditional careers. Initially she started her career as a hairdresser. Although she loved it she couldn't stand on her feet all day and after six months reluctantly had to give it up.
"At that time I thought, what do I want to do with my life? I knew I loved maths so I set my sights on being a comptometer operator (the first commercially successful key-driven mechanical calculator). In those days it was a pretty prestigious job. I targeted a company who used these things, started at the bottom and was offered the opportunity to train. At first I was shocked. All my life I'd been told I was stupid and wouldn't amount to anything and then my boss offered me the chance to train in an area I'd dreamed of. I cried."
Later she up skilled as an accountant. She was good at the work but missed contact with people. While doing a stint as a recruitment agent she met a New Zealander, who she later married. They moved to New Zealand where she secured a top job working in a chartered accountancy. Two years later the company folded. She soon found another role but several years later she was made redundant again. As the economy worsened, work became less secure and Marianne faced six redundancies over a 15-year period. "I decided God was telling me it was time to start my own business," she recalls.
Instead of taking the easy option and setting up her on her own as an accountant she decided to choose the path with heart and follow her passion for astrology.
"I changed my name, changed my vocation and my life changed. I made more money then I ever did working for someone else and I've helped so many people," she says.
Doors quickly opened. She was asked to run seminars, which were hugely successful, and was then approached by Radio 2ZB. During the following three years she popularised astrology through radio talk back and became Wellington's leading astrological consultant. With over 34 years' experience, she now attracts clients from all over the world.
Several years ago, a near-death experience following a cerebral haemorrhage gave Marianne a new lease on life and she focused her efforts on writing her first astrology book, Lunar Astrology from the Horses Mouth, which she says will revolutionise the way people look at astrology.
"We all know how the moon affects the tides. Drawing the water in or releasing it out. If we are 90 per cent fluid it makes sense that humans are affected by the planets too, "Marianne says.
"I began by applying the phases of the moon to people and characterising people born under the various phrases. After seven years' research and hundreds of interviews I saw how accurate lunar astrology was. People really did respond to that phase."
So just how can astrology help?
"Most clients come with financial problems or relationship problems," Marianne says. "They come looking for the hope of happiness in the future."
According to Marianne, predicting success in others is all based on mathematics. "It's the mathematical positions of the planets that actually create events - as simple as the tides going out at high tide, twice a day, and it's predictable."
She asks people for the time and place of birth prior to meeting them and draws up their astrological chart so she can understand, and in turn help them to understand, the aspects influencing them. As a result of their personalised astrological consultation, clients who have come to Marianne under extremely difficult circumstances leave with a deeper understanding of themselves, their problems and how to solve them.
"All my life I prayed to God, 'God please make me a normal child like all the other kids'. But I see now that all this time I was being groomed for my life purpose. I have tremendous empathy for people and a deep compassion. People come to me for readings but what I am really doing is counselling them. I love helping people."
Lunar Astrology from the Horses Mouth is available from Marianne O'Hagan's website, marianneohagan.comBy Cassandra Gaisford