All posts here are from sections of the books: "North Node Astrology; Rediscovering Your Life Direction and Soul Purpose" and "Saturn Returns~The Private Papers of A Reluctant Astrologer" Available only on Amazon.com

To inquire about readings or for more articles on the North/South Nodes, go to: http://www.elizabethspring.com


Wednesday, December 5, 2012




I think readers of this blog might be interested in my new blog which is going to move into becoming a book. It's called "Mystics, Madmen and Messiahs~The Unchosen Lives of Carl Jung and J. Krishnamurti."  Check out the link: http://CarlJungandJKrishnamurti.blogspot.com  These two wise sages have been spiritual mentors for me, and there's a lot about the stories of their lives that people don't know and I am excited to share. My passion for them is how their lives and teachings related: sometimes paradoxically sometimes beautifully. Hope to see you there! ~elizabeth spring~

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bitterness: The Silent Disease




   "Anger is a short madness." Horace 65 BC
 
Anger is a short madness, but bitterness is anger that has been boiled, simmered, and then found so unpalatable that it has been thrown into the deep freeze of our unconscious psyches. Recently the “Los Angeles Times” printed an article called: “Bitterness as mental illness?” It stated that:
“Bitter behavior is so common and deeply destructive that some psychiatrists are urging it be identified as a mental illness under the name post-traumatic embitterment disorder.”

How many of us have a touch of this disease? How many people do we know that have it? And towhat degree? Anger is what we feel first in the face of injustice, and repeated anger becomes deep-seated resentment at whoever and whatever is upsetting us. It turns cold and bitter. And the worse part is that it can turn us bitter even when we think we’ve hidden it so well! It can show on our faces, in our expressions, in our tone of voice. It gives us indigestion, insomnia, back pain, and unexplained headaches. We want so much for it not to de-freeze-- we want so much to forgive and forget, but proper disposal of toxic pain isn’t easy. Most of us need help with it.

Bitterness is a crusty disease that grows on unprocessed anger. It is particularly dangerous for us as we age, because many therapists, including myself, believe that it plays a part in heart disease as well. The heart is both a physical and emotional organ that reflects how we treat it. Most of us are trying to exercise away the excesses that have deposited themselves as fat—but what are we doing with all that un-dealt with pain in our hearts? With the years of frozen anger?

First of all, it needs to be acknowledged. Yes, it’s there. Maybe you call it disillusionment with your career, or maybe you say it’s how your sister cheated you out of part of your inheritance, or maybe it’s that romantic love never quite came through for you. You may have the regret of the ‘enabler’ or the one who had to sacrifice a large part of her life for another. Maybe you blame someone or blame yourself. What matters most though, is the story we tell ourselves about it.

We may think that we have done our ‘anger management’ by cooling and repressing our anger, but in most cases, it’s still alive and not well. It needs to be thawed, re-heated, and disposed of properly. Refrigeration doesn’t work well, as cooled anger turns to resentment and bitterness. It has an annoying tendency to leak out at inappropriate times-- upsetting good relationships, disturbing our dreams, and filling us with a vague discontent.


This story needs to be re-told and re-framed. If you will investigate, research, and delve deeper into the place where you hold this bitterness and pain, you can gain a wider perspective and a deeper understanding of the whole picture. You need to have someone who can deeply listen to your story, and whose opinions you trust. Allow them to help you understand it from a variety of different perspectives. Allow them to help you put it into a story that makes some sense (not easy!)

The psychologist, Carl Jung, once wrote that all adult neuroses could only be healed by a spiritual perspective. Perhaps you can find a way to infuse the story with love towards yourself and others. The last step will be to tell the ‘deep freezer of your subconscious’ the new story of how and why it all happened, and how you see it now.

As a psychotherapist and astrological counselor, I often look at what I call the family karmic inheritance. This is the legacy of inherited sins and blessings that get handed down the generations, and I believe it’s responsible for more psychic distress than we realize.

You may notice that you have our mother’s eyes, but have you noticed that you have some of her passive aggressive traits as well? Do you know what she was holding her anger about? Can you discover how far back it goes? Could you be overly sensitive to authoritarian figures like your grandfather, or experiencing a similar conflict between the demands of creativity and family that he once did? How bad did it get? Once you know the nature of the inheritance you can look at it how it’s showing up in your life. Old, long, and difficult inheritances can be particularly insidious. When you become conscious of the “sins of the father’s” you not only begin a healing process for yourself, but you stop the inheritance from infecting your children.

Generations of maternal and paternal legacies influence us in subtle and not so subtle ways. In some families (such as the presidential Kennedy’s) there has been mention of a family ‘curse’. Although that is an exaggeration for most of us, almost everyone inherits a mixture of psycho-spiritual legacies that need to be sorted through. We need to pull out all the stories we can from the family deep freezer.

You can’t be fueled by bitterness, but you can be fueled by anger. Bitterness eats you up, whereas anger can fuel you to do the emotional detective work that heals. It can help you find your voice and your courage. If you are feeling depressed, stuck, or cynical its time to do the psychic de-freezing. This is the time to act, not to “depress.” You may have to admit that your attempts to sublimate and distract yourself from your difficult moods aren’t working any more. This is a good thing, because it means the time is right for you to make a positive and perhaps radical change.

As an astrologer and counselor, I find that there is a grace and energy that shows up when we do things at the right time. If you have no family members who are alive, or who won’t tell you true stories; you can find powerful hints as to this inheritance on your astrological chart. And when you allow yourself to feel strongly about your feelings, rather than freezing them, you allow an opening for grace and serendipity. Call it what you will: God or chance or synchronicity, but whenever you decide to melt the frozen chunks of bitter memories with the healing warmth of tears and heartfelt stories, you invite in powers and graces beyond your rational mind. I believe we ‘summon the Gods’ with our open hearts, and that the Soul is ruthless in finding its way home.

Elizabeth Spring, MA, has two books out on www.amazon.com , the first called: “North Node Astrology; Rediscovering Your Life Direction and Soul Purpose” and "Saturn Returns; The Private Papers of A Reluctant Astrologer"  She can be contacted through her website: www.elizabethspring.com

Friday, October 12, 2012

Excerpt from blog: 'South Node Astrology': How Love Sabotages and Saves our Lives


Sabotage? My hope is that the word “sabotage” in the title gave you a little jolt! Yes, “love” itself doesn’t sabotage, but the distortions and poverty of love (such as when we didn’t get “good enough parenting”) and our interpretation of what love is and isn’t— are the areas where “love” sabotages us. Every romantic movie and love song reminds us of how love “saves” us, but it’s in the therapist’s office that one hears the story of how love sabotages us. So the focus here will be in looking at our unique styles of loving—loving both ourselves, others and God. These were the first commandments we were given, and they certainly seem worth considering.

 One of my hopes for this blog and new book is to explore how reframing our understanding of love and relationship can help us bring in more of its saving quality and less of its sabotaging—and ultimately to explore how it’s truly an “inside job” which is much less dependent on others than we may realize. I don’t pretend to have all the answers, and certainly don’t have perfect relationships, but I’m moved to delve into this territory. Want to come along? I welcome your thoughts on this….


So how does this fit with astrology? In exploring relationship patterns in astrology we look at the South Node, the Moon and to the planets Venus and Neptune. What happens when we have Venus and Pluto (God of the Underworld) in aspect in our charts? What happens when the Moon or Venus is squared by Mars? What happens when we keep repeating the mistakes of our South Node patterns, and keep coming up with the same unfulfilling patterns of “unlove” and bad relationships?


Love itself may be perfect—as the high expression of Neptune itself is perfect mystical love. But humans live primarily “Venus” love or “Moon” love—and it’s messy, confusing and imperfect. I believe it’s imprinted with the past life patterns of the South Node, in a similar way to how DNA is imprinted.


The strongest pattern to understand then may be the South Node in your birth chart. In Evolutionary Astrology, one is advised to “read” the South Node negatively; that is to understand it primarily as what we didn’t get right in the past. This past could be earlier in this life, or in former lives, or even what we didn’t get right yesterday.


It is the “Moon’s memory” not the Mercurial/linear memory, that is carried over from life to life. It is this memory that does not concern itself with facts, or details or stories, but holds simply the emotional impact—the drama and trauma of the Soul. We forget the stories of past lives, but something remains like a forgotten dream—and this “emotional hangover” is called the South Node of the Moon.


As you may know, the Nodes are mathematical points rather than planets, and are calculated by the intersecting orbits between the Earth, Sun, and Moon. Throughout the history of astrology these points have pointed to our re-incarnational history, for they describe where we’ve been (South Node) and where we’re going (North Node.) Like the compass that points North, or the astrolabe with the arrow shooting through the globe, these Nodes hold the “emotional memory” and trajectory of our lives.


As in dreams, and in all unconscious content, there is “gold” in these South Node patterns as well, and we carry over positive attributes, talents and inclinations as well as our default reactive patterns. It’s also been said in Vedic astrology that we give to others from the South Node what we know innately in our bones and psyche, and yet we feed and nurture ourselves from the soul wisdom of the North Node. This was the content of my first book, “North Node Astrology; Rediscovering Your Life Direction and Soul Purpose.”


A new book, of which this blog is the raw material of—concerns the nature of the emotional memory of the South Node. What do we remember emotionally? I believe it’s mostly about love and the presence or absence of Love. Relationships—and the burden we put on our relationships through our expectations and “styles of loving”.


 In this blog, I’ll be delving into the changing nature of relationships (with a little more focus on what love is after the hormones/honeymoon/anima projections have worn a little thinner) and to ponder “styles of loving” with a minimum of astrological jargon. I’d like it to contain enough astrology so that you can look at your chart, and say “Ah-hah!” but not so much astrology that you get lost in technicalities. I’ll attempt to interweave the psychological and the astrological, the personal and the interpersonal, the theories with the messy “particulars” of our lives.


It’s a big subject. We live and love among many “layers of feelings”—why do we dislike someone’s style or persona and yet “love” the person they truly are underneath all that? We divorce, dismiss, and lose people in our lives, sometimes like so many scraps of paper thrown away, yet these people continue to remain in our psyche nevertheless.


But….we can choose to live between the layers of feeling, not discarding or despairing or thinking in black/white polarities, and still honoring all the layers of loving, liking, disliking, and the mystery of love which sits in our hearts.


Here’s what the poet, Stanley Kunitz, had to say about this in his poem, “The Layers.” He wrote this in reflection, towards the end of his life. (This blogging program is printing it as prose--how interesting!--so I will leave it that way in a stream of consciousness style. Forgive me, you readers who are poets!)

"I have walked through many lives, some of them my own, and I am not who I was, though some principle of being abides, from which I struggle not to stray. When I look behind, as I am compelled to look before I can gather strength to proceed on my journey, I see the milestones dwindling toward the horizon and the slow fires trailing from the abandoned camp-sites, over which scavenger angels wheel on heavy wings. Oh, I have made myself a tribe out of my true affections, and my tribe is scattered! How shall the heart be reconciled to its feast of losses? In a rising wind the manic dust of my friends, those who fell along the way, bitterly stings my face. Yet I turn, I turn, exulting somewhat, with my will intact to go wherever I need to go, and every stone on the road precious to me.
In my darkest night, when the moon was covered and I roamed through wreckage, a nimbus-clouded voice directed me: "Live in the layers, not on the litter." Though I lack the art to decipher it, no doubt the next chapter in my book of transformations is already written. I am not done with my changes."

Monday, August 20, 2012


                                                    “Alchemical Astrology”
Workshop at the Boston Jung Institute, Saturday October 20, 2012. For more info, questions, and registration call: 617-796-0108 or email: cgjungbos1@aol.com  10:00 am-4:00 pm  $60~5 CEUs
The archetypal planetary energies of Uranus and Pluto are squaring off to each other seven times between 2012 and 2018. What do these mythical energies represent? This planetary square is both generationally and personally impactful. In this workshop we’ll look at the higher and lower ‘octaves’ or expressions of each of these archetypes as they conjoined in the 1960’s and squared off in the 1930’s, as well as how they might be most skillfully played out in your astrological chart. We’ll look at how Pluto, Lord of the Underworld, and Uranus, harbinger of change, is placed in your birth chart and where it is now by transit. Registration must include birth date, time, and place. All registrants will receive their charts, and basic knowledge of astrology will be helpful.  Limited class size.
 From Rick Tarnas, author of Cosmos and Psyche: "The Uranus-Pluto square could well represent something like a combination of the 1930s and the 1960s in a twenty-first-century context: a sustained period of enormous historical change requiring humanity to radically expand the scope of its vision and draw upon new resources and capacities in ways that could ultimately be deeply liberating."

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Excerpt from book: 'North "Node Astrology; Rediscovering Your Life Direction and Soul Purpose"


“One’s life direction seems to evolve through the mysterious equation of “fate plus character equals destiny.” I’m intrigued by how that middle factor of character grows and is changed through our choices. How much free will do we really have? How random is fate? Metaphysical questions abound, yet I believe that it is in the making of character through our choices that makes all the difference, and the depth of the insight that accompanies it.

My hope is that this book gives you, dear reader, a rather special and curious tool to dig deeper into the whys and wherefores of character and destiny. Our life direction is like the arrow which we shoot through the skies, and aimed or not aimed it lands somewhere. We choose our target based on what we know. And as for soul purpose, I share a common yet sacred bias here, in saying that it is ultimately bound up with our growing ability to love and be loved.”
Pastel: Elizabeth Spring

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

MagicSecret

MagicSecret  (safe link for wise words....) 
     We live the stories we tell ourselves about who we are and how it all is....so choose both your words and your stories carefully! Yes, that is part of the 'Magic Secret'....that is using the North Node skillfully.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Transiting Venus In Gemini: The Challenge: to create a new mind, based in the Heart.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

The North Node~Your Soul Messenger


"The North Node is the single most important
point in the chart...it describes what your Soul wants to learn and
experience in this life. It is a Soul Messenger."

Have you ever wondered what life-lessons and experiences
your Soul wants to have in this life? Do you know what you truly yearn for?

Unique insights into these questions are found by using the ancient
astrological technique of examining the North and South Nodes of your astrological chart. Soul purpose and life direction questions are profoundly significant, and the Nodes in your chart address those questions from the perspective of your Soul---instead of your rational mind and ego.

The re-incarnational theory behind this is simply that your
Soul chose to be born at a certain time and place so that it would carry over
the gifts and challenges from previous lives, and that your chart reflects the
original Soul intention on coming into this world.
The great psychologist, Carl Jung, believed that the time of birth was not a coincidence
but was a mysterious synchronicity that reveals a great deal. He used astrology in his
practice with his clients, and found that it simply worked. So what may seem
unimportant to you--your birthday, time, and place is actually a profound tool;
an oracle. And what may look like a mystery to you, is not a mystery to the
astrologer who can read the meaning contained in the chart.

Lets see how this works. There are three pivotal key-points
in solving the mystery: the Sun, the North Node, and the South Node. . When an
astrologer looks at your chart, these pointsthese clues--are described in some
detail by their sign, house and aspect positions. But we don't need to get
complicated, lets look at it briefly:

Your Sun sign, reads like a personality description
presenting all the positive and negative ways you can "play out" your
Sun sign. For example, as a Gemini Sun, you can play out the flirty, fickle,
uncommitted aspects of the sign or you can use your great breath of knowledge
to live a very full life in which you make wise and helpful decisions. You are
the communicator of the zodiac. From the Souls perspective you chose to be born
a Gemini in order to play out the highest octave of the sign. Thats the first
clue to the mystery: look to the highest possible use and talents in your Sun
sign. Almost any astrology book can help you with this.

The second clue is the North Node. Many astrologers today
believe it is the single most important point in the chart. It is unique to
each person and describes what your Soul wants to learn and experience in this
life. It is a Soul Messenger, describing the evolutionary needs of your Soul.
When we act out the qualities of this Node we heal and nurture ourselves.
It tells us in what area of life we need to bring emphasis, and some of the
ways to do it. The North Node has a sign, a house position, and aspects, and is
an excellent suggestion---similar to the idea of a personal guiding North Star.

By contrast, the South Node describes the qualities brought
over from our previous life, and describes how we lived when we were young. Our
deeply habitual ways of being and thinking are shown here, and as we mature we
tend to act out the qualities of our South Node less. It shows both the
unhelpful and negative qualities that our Soul wishes to move away from, as
well as containing what Carl Jung talked about as the "gold in the
shadow". This gold is the unconscious unrecognized talents and
abilities that we bring over from a former life or that are simply latent or
repressed qualities. It is wise to uncover and use the gold in the South Node,
while leaving the negative old patterns behind, and to move in the direction of
the North Node.

Most astrologers would agree that the South Node reflects
karmic qualities of our previous life, describing the unfinished business
and things that we didn't 'get quite right.' Although there are gifts and
talents shown there, it is the North Node that points to the qualities our Soul
wants to use and acquire in this life. So when you have a chart reading, take a
long look at what your North Node tells you, even if it feels a little
unfamiliar and challenging. It offers a potent suggestion.

So how does this all work together in a chart? Lets look at
my chart as an example. My Sun is in Libra, North Node in Taurus in the 2nd
house, and South Node in Scorpio in the 8th house. "Houses" are the
areas of life where things get acted out, and the Nodes are each in different
houses. In many ways I acted out my South Node till my Saturn Return at age 28.
I have tended to learn things the hard way, to be ungrounded and to go to
excesses when I was young. It has taken me a long time to live into my true
profession as an astrologer. I married late, and after 20 years of marriage was
divorced for five years, and then I remarried my first husband. We've been
married now since 2001, and continue to do the wonderful/horrible work that
soul mates do with each other---we help each other grow. His independence and
my desire 'to merge' are not comfortable together, yet I can see how he
naturally pushes me to live out the independence and grounded values of my
Taurus North Node. I encourage and stimulate the curiosity and expansiveness of
his North Node in Gemini. There's grace and grit here; a true marriage.

My South Node in Scorpio suggests that my Soul purpose is,
in part, to move away from hurtful melodramas and to ground myself in my own
talents and resources. It speaks of the desire for serenity and to move away
from the dramatic reactivity and the excesses of my earlier years and former
life. Ive needed to take on the qualities of loyalty and persistence of the
Taurus North Node and to find the sacred in the commonplace, which is a
beautiful quality of that sign.
The "gold" in my Scorpio shadow-South Node is my intuitive ability and emotional intensity.
One could speculate that with my South Node in Scorpio (conjuncting Jupiter, the planet of expansion and privilege) I may have been the 'power behind the throne' to someone of importance, and was used to enjoying the largesse of another person and a more dramatic life. That is not the case in this lifeI need to use my own resources and power based on that
grounded Taurus in the 2nd house of personal values and resources. The Universe gives me strong hints whenever I move into territory that is not
my own to claim anymore.

My Sun sign in Libra wants serenity, harmony and beauty. Yet
it thinks in terms of opposing ideas, and about the paradoxical nature of life.
I can get easily stressed, yet look poised. The North Node points to the
necessity of creating calmness and living off my own values and resources. It's
also significant that I have no earth signs in my chartexcept the North Node in
Taurus, and yet I was unconsciously drawn to compensate for that (the pull of
the North Node) as I make pottery as well as do astrology. For many years I
lived in a stone house, and married an earth sign, Virgo. Jungian psychologists
would call this the unconscious compensation of my inferior function; the
sensate.

An astrologer sees a chart like my mine and says this is an
air and fire sign personality, whereas a Jungian therapist would say I was an
intuitive-thinking type. This is labeling, and just the beginning of a deeper
discussion, but its still useful.

The movement towards the North Node is a continuous
process, not just one decision you make. For me, I needed to get lost, and
found, many times--- I divorced and remarried the same man. I write and do
astrological counseling, which is my true vocation, but I have followed several
gods home. I continually need to recommit to ever deeper levels of grounding
and persistence in my work and life. Serenity and home life is very important.
I know I survived a difficult family karmic inheritance, yet I strive to act
out the highest octave of the Libra Sun which pulls me towards tactfulness and
deep thinking. And that South Node in Scorpio still tries to seduce me in every
way you can imagine.

So, I come back to the chart and to the astrological work
again and again as a spiritual practice. It helps me remember my commitment to
the work of being a healer; an intuitive astrologer who is grounded and
practical. Astrology reflects the internal dialog between the different
parts of oneself, but at least now I know who to listen to and why. I am
grateful to have this divinatory tool that helps make conscious what is
unconscious in the psyche, and I delight in sharing the gifts of this Soul
Messenger to whoever asks.

ElizabethSpring, MA, is a counseling astrologer and
therapist who has studied astrology and the psychology of Carl Jung since 1969.
She has studied and taught in England, Switzerland, and California, and has
been a professional astrologer since 1992. She specializes in relationship,
career, and soul direction and life purpose issues. Consultations are done by
phone or at her office in Wickford, RI. Other articles can be read on http://www.elizabethspring.com/

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Excerpt from "Saturn Returns" : Chapter Thirteen

“I live my life in growing orbits, which move out over the things of the world, perhaps I can never achieve the last, but that will be my attempt. I am circling around God, around the ancient tower, and I have been circling for a thousand years, and I still don’t know if I am a falcon, or a storm, or a great song.”
“Do you think that’s the German writer, Rilke?" I asked. "It sounds more like ...John O’Donahue to me, do you know him, Peter—the Irish writer?”
“I don't no....I guess I’m a bit ‘parched’ spiritually, eh?” Peter pursed his lips. “We’re drinking up the goodness here Isabelle, but don’t get too enchanted here—this place, this Lindisfarne-- is the place that almost took Sophie’s life.
"I know. I’m trying to understand why she came here, but we won’t get that, Peter, if we can’t get beyond our ideas of right and wrong, of what is true, and what is not."
Peter winced. “I can feel myself holding back—I have too many old ideas about Christianity. I’m trying to see what is good here now, not what they did wrong in the past….yet the past is everywhere, seeping out of the walls and rocks. And some of it is as quaint and sweet as this lichen and moss on this stone wall—and some of it—well, it will show itself, I think.”
And it did.