The Moon’s Nodes
Finding themes and patterns suggesting a certain type of event can be relatively easy. But, when it comes to timing an event, we can often use all the help we can get. The nodes of the Moon provide this timing and helps to pinpoint with more detail the particulars of an event.
Timing Events with the Moon’s Nodes
The North Node of the Moon, both in the natal horoscope and in its transit provides a positive influx of energy and power. It has been identified with Jupiter and embodies a joining quality. The South Node is akin to Saturn, and may show a point of self-dissipation. It is of a separating quality.
A planet in conjunction with one of the nodes in the birth chart has the influence of the appropriate node to be either an innate source of fortune and honor or one of potential mishandling and self-undoing. The South Node points to a place where we perform at a somewhat unconscious level, meaning the easy execution of natural abilities or taking the easy road and, occasionally reflecting moral deficiencies.
Since the opposing nodes hold different meanings, as they transit the horoscope, they create a double set of aspects. Their conjunction with an angle or planet, and conversely, the conjunction of a transiting planet with a natal node place a great emphasis on the planet or angle involved in the contact. The nodes provide timing, and their contacts can be relied on to forecast probable events in keeping with the nature of the angle or planet transited. Some of the most significant life developments take place when the Moon’s nodes transit the angles of the chart.
Following is an outline of nodal contacts and can be referred to whether found in the transits to the natal or progressed chart or in any return chart.
By considering each of the nodal connections formed in return charts, a considerable amount of substantial material can be found in the nodal factors alone. In fact, these will often lead the entire chart. Noteworthy contacts in the return chart include not only the transiting node to natal planet, and transiting planet to natal node, but also transiting node to transiting planet. In the latter case, when the return house and sign position of the pair is considered, the trend suggested will be quite a dynamic factor for the return period.
Of course, nodal contacts formed in the Solar Return are more powerful than in Lunar Returns, simply due to the length of time the aspect is in force. Contacts of the transiting nodes to the progressed planets and angles also manifest quite dynamically, and should be considered. Learn more about your Solar & Lunar Returns with my book, Predicting Events with Astrology. This new edition features four chapters on the returns that will basically walk you through, one step at a time.
As the nodes of the Moon transit across the MC/IC axis, there are usually countering themes involving the areas ruled by the 4th and 10th houses. Since a conjunction of the North Node to the Midheaven automatically brings the South Node to the 4th house cusp, these transits will usually show an increase in status and activity runs smoothly in the professional area. There are good relationships with superiors and authorities and they tend to be especially beneficial at this time. This transit often closely coincides with a new professional position or promotion. At the same time, things may not be going as smoothly within the domestic scene, thus an emphasis to the outlet of energies through the professional arena. There may be concerns regarding the parents or family. This time period may coincide with additional expenses or repairs around the house and could time the illness of one of the parents. Occasionally, this transit reflects a period of deep introspection as the individual reassesses his or her security foundations.
The opposite transit with the North Node transiting the 4th house cusp and the South Node on the Midheaven suggests an opposing theme. Here, it is the home front and familial relationships that are progressing smoothly and providing satisfaction, while the professional area is lacking in some way. This transit often coincides with a fortunate relocation or move. This may be a direct result of the unfortunate situations arising in the professional area or a lack of career opportunities. Superiors or authority figures may be frowning upon or dissatisfied with the efforts of the individual at this time. Assistance is likely to come from one of the parents, who are likely to be enjoying fortunate circumstances.
The 10th and 4th houses are traditionally representative of the parents, with the 10th usually identifying the more authoritative of the two. However, research indicates that when it comes to the transits of the nodes, the 4th house relates to either parent, with other authority figures represented by the 10th.
When the North Node transits the Ascendant, the individual is in a “coming out” phase. Personal timing tends to be fortunate, and there is a knack for being in the right place at the right time. Things begin to click, as there is an air of self-sufficiency, with others responding more readily to any personal efforts undertaken by the individual. Those born with the North Node conjunct the Ascendant are always noticeable for these dynamic qualities, and others are quite willing to follow their lead.
At the same time, the transiting South Node on the 7th house cusp shows that others may tend to be somewhat like extra weight to carry, requiring the individual to take on added responsibilities or burdens. This transit occasionally times a health problem or unfortunate circumstances surrounding the marriage partner or an intimate. Due to stressful conditions, partners may become moody or difficult to deal with. Because the individual with this aspect is anxious to move forward on his/her personal interests and projects, any conflicting demands are more taxing than usual.
With the opposite transit, the situation is reversed. With the North Node on the cusp of the 7th house, and the South Node on the 1st, others seem to hold the winning hand for the time being. Whether or not the individual is undergoing some personality crisis, he or she finds that it is not a time for going it alone. Others must be depended upon to a more elevated degree, and it is not unusual to find that there is a very real dependency issue going on here. Whatever help or support needed by the individual at this time can be found easily, since there are others around more that willing to lend themselves. This cycle often coincides with meeting a “partner” who can be of great benefit for some time to come, and it is not uncommon for marriage to take place with this transit. In general, benefits to the individual will come via the partner, and these are sometimes quite substantial.
Although these transits frequently bring an emphasis to the marriage partner as the one who either requires or offers the additional support, this is not a hard and fast rule. It may be some other person or “others” in general who play this role.
These angular contacts of the nodes usually time the more important events happening in a lifetime, and while the foregoing describes the general way they will manifest, there are exceptions in which a North Node transit will coincide with unfortunate events and vice-versa. At such times, there will be other patterns showing in the chart, often involving the nodes themselves, describing this reverse order of things. If the node is transiting with another planet when it makes one of these natal contacts, those factors must be considered.
Even in the return charts, the periods in which either the transiting or natal node fall on one of the angles suggest a dynamic trend. Events tend to be more significant and personal than at other times. For example, if the transiting node aligns with the Ascendant of the Lunar Return, it will be a particularly busy month. The individual is likely to initiate or follow through with a project that is time consuming and personally rewarding. There will be a need for balancing personal needs with responsibilities to others. In fact, it is a good idea to prepare for this transit if possible. Beyond this, if a node falls exactly on any other house cusp in the return, the events relating to that house will contain deeper connotations for the period.
The conjunction of the transiting nodes to the natal nodes also typically times important cyclic events in the life. These connections reflect cataclysmic points in time, similar to the previously described angular contacts. While all events linked to the nodes seem to contain an undertone of karma, these especially point to matters in which others appear to have as much control as the individual in ordering up the events taking place. It is notably preferable to have the nodes lined up on the natal nodal axis as they were at birth to having them interchanged in position. The North Node conjunct North Node often reflects forming relationships and fortunate connections, while the South Node conjunct the North Node indicates broken relationships and unfortunate connections. The latter combination frequently times mishaps, accidents, and unusual circumstances.
Nodes/Part of Fortune
Aspects linking the nodes to the Part of Fortune are also noteworthy. The North Node with the Pars Fortuna reflects comfortable conditions and meetings with those who can be of special benefit. It often times a change in trends brought about through this new and fortunate connection. The individual’s timing and choices tend to be right on target for bringing about improved conditions. The opposing South Node transit usually shows less fortunate circumstances in the living conditions and environment. Support is not only lacking, there may be conflicts arising that push the individual in a corner. In fact, caution should be applied in forming new relationships at this time since someone from this group may be found to have major countering interests to those of the individual. Pressure builds in various areas, and the individual is likely to complicate matters even more through inappropriate choices and unwise decisions.
The nodes with the Vertex have similar connotations. The nature of the Vertex implies that nodal connections to this point will manifest qualities similar to those with the Ascendant axis as well as the Part of Fortune. This is because it is a sort of auxiliary Descendant, and relates specifically to important and seemingly fated encounters, both with people and with circumstances.
Another notable contact of the nodes are those that form with the Sun/Moon midpoint. Since this is a point reflecting a male/female relationship, often the parents as a unit, and is a point of balance of the yin/yang qualities, it frequently signifies events taking place which affects the family unit. Squares to this point frequently appear to be as significant as the conjunction/opposition.
As the nodes transit the natal planets or transiting planet aspects the natal nodes, events take place according to the things ruled by that planet and the area it rules in the natal chart. The nodes tend to excite any planet to manifest at its fullest potential and bring an extreme amount of emphasis to such a planet. The transiting node conjunct transiting planets brings an emphasis to things ruled by that planet. If transiting a natal planet, the inherent potential of the planet is given more freedom to operate. In this case, the potential of any natal planet must be considered when judging probable manifestations. The Solar and Lunar Returns should especially be noted for any of these planetary contacts. They offer valuable detail on the kind of activity that is upcoming, as well as identifying the area of life to be affected and how such activity will take place. These nodal contacts can be combined with an evaluation of the progressed chart and current transits to determine more specifically the events coming due.
Outside of the angular placements of the nodes, their conjunction with the planet ruling the natal horoscope is among the most notable of any. Since the 1st house rules the physical body, a conjunction of one of the nodes to this ruler have been found to coincide with self-initiated changes in appearance or style. They may also time an illness, operation, or accident.
Links of Pluto with one of the nodes is quite dynamic. Pluto is associated with new strength in confronting and overcoming limitations while the nodes also time periods of exceptional strength in facing situations once and for all. Together, they show a time of reckoning with deep and powerful psychological issues.
Because the nodes are reflective of lunar qualities associated with the domestic environment, paired with Pluto, they often translate into literal transformations or reorganization taking place within the home or family unit. Circumstances are often somewhat tumultuous in the home, and/or renovations are taking place. There is a “coming to terms” with inner needs.
This Pluto link also brings termination and times the closure of significant issues, especially if there have been conflicts of interest. Immovable force meets with immovable force, and a collision of interests often results in a victory for one and defeat for another. A previous set of circumstances is rearranged upon a new foundation. Pluto is often involved with the nodes when divorce occurs. Together, this pair is significant of sexual issues of all kinds and it has been found linked to rape. There are death and rebirth situations, and an actual death could occur. This combination has been found to be a significant factor in suicides, overdoses, and murder, as well as hold ups, shootings, and other personal attacks.
These Pluto/node connections are also linked to both kidnappings and forced custodial changes. Relating to reproduction, the pairing may also coincide with miscarriages, abortions, and vasectomies.
The link of the nodes with Pluto is significant also of new enterprise and of financial matters. The house ruled by Pluto should also be considered in judging the probable area of life that comes into focus.
In addition to the changes initiated or encountered by the individual with a node/Pluto contact, on a larger scale it can be witnessed to produce a change in consciousness by the masses when it is the transiting node upon the natal Pluto of a generation.
Neptune links to the nodes often times the rise of confusing issues, and there is a general lack of clarity over a particular situation. A previous set of circumstances may have reached a point of dissolve, and new connections are taking place. There are frequently deceptive practices taking place, and one should question the motives of anyone who comes into the life at this time, keeping in mind that “he can only be deceived who first deceives himself”, a quote from Jean Jacques Rousseau. It is also a time when the individual is more likely to deceive another, or to break the trust of another, even though the decision to do so may seem totally justified at the time. This is possibly the major downfall associated with Neptune, and one’s own judgment should be questioned and reviewed under this combination.
Neptune rules liquids and large bodies of water, and these aspects have been found involved with everything from serious roof leaks to living, working, or vacationing on a beach front property. As noted earlier, the connections of the nodes with Neptune may time a period when drug or alcohol issues come to the surface. This particular combination is also quite prevalent when thefts and robberies take place. A few years ago, the two were transiting close together for some time. During that time period, it seems that all around, people were having their cars stolen, they were getting robbed and/or losing valuable items.
Even with the foregoing, Neptune should not be considered an unfortunate contact, and it often times remarkable events in which important dreams materialize. It means the erasing of boundaries between the real and the fantastic, which makes this possible. To quote St. Augustine, “Miracles are not contrary to nature, but only contrary to what we know about nature.” The intuition is stronger, more reliable and often right on target. These connections also show a time when inspiration acts as a catalyst to profound artistic accomplishments. This is a spiritual combination, and may coincide with the transcendence to a higher spiritual level through meditation, dream work or other altered states of consciousness.
A virtual plethora of possibilities exist when the nodes come together with Uranus. Events are always unexpected and come about suddenly or out of the blue, in keeping with Uranus’ characteristics. There are brief encounters with those who can lift one to extraordinary heights, or dash one into the depths, and these most frequently have their repercussions upon the public reputation of an individual. It is not a good time to take unwise risks if it means subjecting the reputation to negative criticism or ruin, for this is quite likely to happen with this aspect. For that reason, it frequently times the unexpected loss of a job or scandalous attacks to the reputation. Those who have been honest and adhered to ethical codes in their actions and dealings need not worry about this. These configurations are often present when a freedom issue arises. This may be the loss of freedom; literally, as in incarceration for a serious crime, or a black mark against one to reflect a lesser crime. Conversely, the same pair has been found to time sudden popularity and fame.
Chance encounters are common, and they can usually be counted on to be quite significant, one way or the other. Typically, relationships begun with this aspect tend to be temporary, erratic, a source of upset, or short-lived, but they have a definite purpose. Once this purpose is carried out, the relationship comes to an abrupt end, although not necessarily on a sour note. Uranian activities are prominent with these aspects, and an interest may develop or opportunities open up in areas such as astrology, electronics, or advanced technologies. The house position of Uranus can help to pinpoint the area of focus.
Concerns and events may revolve around an authority figure or someone of advanced age when Saturn and the nodes are linked. This is occasionally a parent, but more frequently there are issues with an authority figure. This may be a boss, judge, business associate or someone else of advanced rank and knowledge. Such a person may be a source of loss, or impose delays and restrictions. Actually, the limitations encountered are not nearly as serious as the individual takes them at this time, and situations tend to smooth out nicely in the long run.
For purposes of stability, there is nothing better than the conjunction of Saturn and North Node. Both relationships and enterprises begun at this time are likely to be durable and long lasting, and this is especially notable in marriage and professional areas. The individual is willing to take on heavier responsibilities and the added commitments will prove favorable. The Saturn conjunction to the natal North Node is said to be particularly karmic in nature, bringing due rewards for past efforts. There is much truth to this, and it often coincides with terrific upward professional progress, as well as stabilizing influences in general. If Saturn turns retrograde and passes over this point two or three times, these rewards can be expected at each contact. The alternate transit of North Node to Saturn works in a similar fashion. If rewards do not transpire, it may be time to scrutinize one’s previous efforts.
Saturn with the nodes may time extensive dental work, periods of colds or flu and bowel problems.
Jupiter, as the “greater fortune” does indeed time the periods of greater material assets when combined with the nodes. This combination is often noted when material and financial increase occurs. However, these contacts usually time a period of additional expenditures as well, and the added income is sometimes necessary to cover these. Over-expansion is also a notable characteristic of Jupiter, and this contact may time a cycle of exceptional monetary risks. Heavy financial losses may be the result, although there is usually someone nearby who is willing to bet on the abilities of the individual to pull through and will often lend a helping hand. Even when facing the material setbacks occasionally signified by this contact, the individual will usually make fortunate strides in his or her philosophical beliefs as a direct result of the experience. If one does not benefit materially, then benefits will be of a spiritual nature. This combination also tends to be somewhat social in nature and generally brings one in contact with those of an honorable reputation who will act as a catalyst to spiritual or financial growth.
Weight loss or gain has been associated with this pairing, with much depending on which of the nodes are involved and any linking configurations. Jupiter with the nodes has been noted in horseback riding accidents and leg injuries. It has also been found to time long distance moves and long distance travel, and to be influential in publishing ventures.
Mars with the nodes is the most dynamic for action of any other planet. Mars holds some similarities to Pluto in regards to new enterprise, except with Mars, the individual initiates the activities taking place. An example of the type of new ventures is seen in our recent exploration of the planet Mars itself. During the time that the US surface scanner, Sojourner, was on its way to Mars, Mars itself turned retrograde, spending several months within a conjunction to the transiting North Node. At the time that Mars again reached its original stationary retrograde position and formed a conjunction to the North Node of the Pathfinder enterprise chart, the scanner landed on Mars. The entry into new territories and the pioneering activity of Mars is quite evident in this historical event. The fact that it was Mars itself being explored is exemplary!
Mars with the nodes give the courage to follow through on new ideas, and striking out one one’s own, however there is more of a tendency to take risks. Caution should be applied to the types of risks taken since the combination also attracts law enforcement officers. The recent Mars/node conjunction timed numerous citations for speeding and reckless traffic violations for many individuals in whose chart the pair contacted the natal Mars. For several personal acquaintances, two or more citations were received within days of each other. With these contacts, tremendous energies come bursting forth in an effort to maintain the personal identity. Mars is also the most often noted link to the nodes at the times of accidents, due almost exclusively to sudden careless actions. Confrontations are very likely to surface with this connection and there are increased mechanical breakdowns and malfunctions, also notable in the recent Pathfinder exploration.
Venus combinations with the nodes usually time pleasant events of a social nature, celebrations, meeting with friends and fortunate circumstances in general. They are exceptional timers for childbirth and any related social events, such as baby showers, and post birth visitations. Since Venus signifies affections and attachments, these combinations also reflect a focus on ones children in their later years. They reflect an involvement with women and their interests, including finery, beauty salons, bridal preparations, flowers, and all things feminine and lacy. They may signify romance, marriage, and they frequently time the concern for a loved one.
Mercury with the nodes usually promises an accent on movement. It may signal an actual move, but more frequently times either major or minor concerns with vehicles, occasionally coinciding with a traffic accident. Travel plans are made and tickets purchased. A secondary theme suggested by the pairing is issues surrounding communications and agreements. These tend to take on added importance, and there is an increase of important news personal in nature. Important discussions and negotiations take place. In relation to both these themes of Mercury, it is a good idea to check the overall chart and to consider which of the nodes is involved in the contact to Mercury. Before issuing a statement in writing or signing papers of any kind, think things over at length first. Extra awareness in any communications at this time can help to prevent serious misunderstandings. Mercury sometimes signifies events relating to young people, and for that reason may sometimes reflect issues surrounding children; either one’s own or others.
The nodes combined with the Sun hold a similar meaning as the nodes on the angles of the chart, especially the Midheaven axis. There are frequently locations or job changes. If it is the South Node on the Sun, this change may be due to lack of opportunity in the current location and a phase of bottoming out. Relocation taking place at this time frequently work out very well.
Unless there are conflicting themes, the contacts of the nodes with the Sun can generally be counted on to bring favorable conditions, benefits and the potential for progress and promotion. This is more likely with positive North Node contacts to the Sun. Important acquaintances are made and anyone coming prominently into the life at this time should prove to be quite beneficial, often leading the individual in the direction of bigger and better things. There are fortunate encounters and other discoveries, and financial matters usually improve. The nodal contacts to the progressed Sun are just as dynamic as to the natal Sun.
The Moon partakes somewhat to the nodal contacts to the Ascendant axis, and signifies events quite personal in nature. Similar to the Ascendant tie, this frequently times a period of favor, popularity, and an exceptional amount of support from others. It is especially noted when public support is received. Just as important as a nodal contact to the natal Moon is its contact to the progressed Moon. In fact, the latter contact sometimes appears as the more dynamic of the two.
Events centering on the home and family take on added importance and these contacts especially relate to qualities of nurturing and mothering. Often someone enters the life at this time that plays a nurturing role. This is likely to be a woman and relationships with women tend to be most significant. At other times, this contact may show a time when a nurturing individual leaves or the relationship comes to an end. These node/Moon links also coincide with the birth of children and events surrounding offspring. This contact has been noted as a factor in various accidents and in cases of drowning. As in all the nodal contacts, the North Node will more often reveal a joining quality in these matters, while the South Node indicates a separating quality.
If you liked this article, you’d probably enjoy my book Lunar Nodes, which is a complete reference on the lunar nodes; from aspects in the natal chart, to transiting aspects, to finding compatibility between two people based on nodal aspects. Predicting Events with Astrology includes more about the Nodes of the Moon as well as Eclipse factors. My book, Identifying Planetary Triggers includes a table of nodal positions to 2050.
This article was first published in the April 1998 issue of Dell Horoscope. © Dell Horoscope, all rights reserved.