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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - May 9, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta The Let him dnc THIRD SECTION WEDNESDAY, MAY 9, 1973 PAGES 33-40 MEET MADAME SUN An astrology star' By ROSETTE HARGROVE PARIS (NEA) Fortune tellers have existed in every civilization in recorded history, and certainly even before. No wonder, then, that today 10 million Frenchmen, from the highest to the lowest strata of society, continue to consult 3.400 soothsayers 500 f< r Paris alone paying S5 to and sometimes more, for peeks at future and fate in palms, cards and the stars. It is es- timated that all of anxious French souls consult some spe- cies of adviser daily. The most celebrated in Paris is Madame Soleil (Madam an astrologist. There is nothing mysterious about her. A very plump 60, in the space of 18 months on the radio, she's become the most questioned person in France. When she first came on to Europe No. 1, a state-owned network, close to 25.000 listeners telephoned in, anxious for help with their problems. Earthy, completely uninhibit- ed. Madame Soleil replies with incredible serenity to ques- tions. "I love nothing better than to help people who come to me with their she says. These problems can be classified under five general headings: Love, Health, Money, Children and Death. What ?bout horoscopes in rewspapcrs and magazines? "Any horoscope under your sign is not drawn up sspcifi- cally for she says. "But they are by no means a bit- er-miss effort. Astro1ogists, the serious ones, daily consult the planets and their positon vis- a-vis the various signs of the zodiac. Their findings are meant to be looked upon as a general guidance for the day, week or month." Madame Soleil's following ranges from cabinet ministers, film, theatre and opera stars to doctors, business tycoons and the man in the street. "I have also had outlaws and religious leaders, not to men- tion that many farmers consult me, the latter know I am very 'down to earth.' After two years she recently gave up her radio program and now confines herself to dealing with the thousands of letters which still come pour- ing into her office. Because astrology depends upon exact calculations, Ma- dame Soleil has become recon- ciled to electronics and the computer. The magic modern machine can establish a chart in the matter of a few min- utes. "I let the machines do the groundwork the equations and can devote more time to analyzing each problem, reply- ing to queries with the frank speech of a loving grandmoth- she says. With her, the computer plays the part of an assistant astrologer, capable of juggling millions of combina- tions. Madame Soleil it is her real name, she was born Ger- maine Soleil now is interest- ed in a company, the Institute of Astrological Research and Orientation, grouping a team of mathematicians and compu- ter experts. She wants to ex- ploit to the utmost the ancient traditions of astrology to make it the youngest of sciences. With the aid of her "think" horoscope edited by Madame Soleil constitutes a precise "celestial chart.'7 Madame Soleil was brought up by a father and mother who were barely 18 years older than she. Papa Soleil died before he was 40, from a wound suffered during World War I. At 16, Germaine had to go to work. She got a job as sec- retary in a political weekly, married, bore three children. (She now has eight grandchil- dren.) Then, out of the blue, a for- tune-telling aunt suggested she try her hand at astrology. This was a field already known to her, as one grandfather dabbled in astronomy. As a child he had trained her to read the stars. Came the day when she sub- stituted for aunt as an ad- viser and she has never turned back. A program manager for French radio consulted her and soon after suggested she do an hour's astrology on the radio, answering questions which would be telephoned in. She de- cided to try it out. "Arriving at the office I could s-se that people were somewhat taken off their guard. Here was I, stout, mid- dle-aged, no make-up, look- ing fike anybody's grandmoth- This was in the fall of 3970. That first afternoon over 20 000 calls were registered and came in regularly after that more thousands. "I am very gregarious, love people, and want nothing more than to comfort, encourage and counsel those who have trou- bles. And it sometimes happens that I chide some of my con- sultants when I feel they are unreasonable." Her plans for the future in- clude children. As a grand- mother she feels that astrolo- gists up to now have sadly neg- lected the problems of the under 15s and their parents. 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