All posts here are from sections of the books: "North Node Astrology; Rediscovering Your Life Direction and Soul Purpose" and "Lifting the Veil; Becoming Your Own Best Astrologer" and "Astrology for the Third Act of Life" and finally "Saturn Returns~The Private Papers of A Reluctant Astrologer" All available in paperback, Kindle and Audible on

To inquire about readings or for more articles on the North/South Nodes, go to:

Friday, August 27, 2010

Private Journal, August 26

Private Journal, August 26, 2010

It was only in 1920, on this day, that women got the right to vote in the United States! Ah~ how those women struggled “to have a voice” and how we still struggle to find our true voice, our authentic Self and express it…every one of us.

This language of astrology has become a voice for me. But it’s strange how ambivalent I feel about it! I hate cocktail-talk astrology, and just don’t do it. And when I called Kendra after the last letter about her miscarriage, I certainly didn’t want to “talk astrology” but the language of the heart.

But there’s more to my reluctance. When I told her that I feel like a “reluctant astrologer” she asked me what I meant--and I couldn’t find the words! So now as I sit here writing in this journal I’m going to try to “think it out” and find my voice that is so often reluctant and ambivalent about astrology….

First there’s the good: this language has given me a voice so that I can speak and counsel others without pathologizing, blaming or shaming. It’s short term therapy—and all therapies—seem to me to me to be the same at the core. Different techniques, yes, and some better at different times, but doesn’t it all come down to: LOVE heals & INSIGHT heals. That’s the heart of it: understanding, catharsis/crying, and love. Love heals.

When astrology “normalizes” experience, as in “yes, that’s one of the ways that a Saturn Return will play out in your life” there’s comfort there, as one can feel connected to a larger sense of meaning and patterns—even a God—something that is not all about random chaos, and luck or the lack of it—or will power and the lack of it.

And when an astrologer listens well—there can be a sense of loving connection between them as well as this connection to a larger pattern of things—even if it’s only to sacred wounds we all carry.

There are times when astrology is “eerily” on target—when what I say and the details of the story of their life synchronize strangely. How could I know those things if astrology wasn’t at least partially true? How could I know that the key to a Pluto transit is about letting go and surrender, whereas the key to a Jupiter transit is “be careful what you wish for, as you may get it?” Hmm… Jupiter transits sound like a coaching session---“do you know what you really want?” whereas a Neptune focused session might be more like: “No, you’re not losing your mind or getting Alzheimer’s, but you just need to let it be OK to “not know” right now…and don’t sign on the dotted line either till this transit passes…!”

So….what’s the problem then….with astrology? With me? Bottom line: there is no way I or anyone else can say how a particular sign or aspect or transit will be played out. Too much variation; no tight foretelling or “signatures” for events. So when a planet, like Saturn, crosses the 4th house cusp, I can say to a person-- you’re going to start thinking about moving, or at the least, about radical re-modeling your home—because you’re wanting your inner sense of home and your outer physical home to be aligned, and there’s a change coming. But I have no idea if this will be played with joy or despair or just how the person will "rework" this foundation area of their chart...their home.

I wonder if it doesn’t all come down to the fact that we have free will and we’re separate Souls making choices? And so astrology is more like a weather forecast than a fortune teller’s prediction. I think if a fortune teller or psychic is right, it’s more likely that a person is in their default habitual pattern of doing things, and not aware of all their possibilities. I guess that’s what astrology should do….make us aware of these opportunities and challenges so that we make the best choices.

But still…I remain reluctant. What happens when we see multiple aspects that are challenging all at the same time? Like what I am facing in the next few years…I wonder if it plants a seed of anxiety? But maybe that’s not bad? I get to sense my mortality, so my decisions might be better. The Buddhists seem to think that meditating upon impermanence is a good idea. I’m not sure….think I'll go up to the art studio and get out of my head for awhile and into my paints....

Friday, August 20, 2010

Letter #9: Astro-Jargon and the Language of the Heart

Dear Kendra~

Last night I was sitting at dinner between two astrologers who were talking voraciously about their techniques--the rightness of the Placidus or Koch house systems, their views on declinations, mid-points, and orbs, and the disparity between Vedic and Western astrology. I found myself in a strangely quiet mood. They seemed like two jewelers exclaiming the beauty of their gems, the profundity of their skills—and their suspicious interplay left me hungry. I listened to their astro-jargon, thinking all the while that they were like bees gathering no nectar. By the time we got to the dessert, I finally found space in the conversation—and was aggravated enough to offer a different opinion.

"What about going deeper into the richness of this mythological language— what about the art of translating astro-jargon into soulful English--! What about bringing it into useful, practical insights drawn from simple techniques?" I challenged them--asking them what they would say to seeing Neptune squaring Mars in a chart and explaining that to a client. I wondered if they knew the simple “rule of three” where one looks to see if a psychological pattern is repeated three times in order to gage its importance. And finally I asked them if they knew that the Nodes have a way of pulling the whole chart together—they didn’t know that.

Perhaps I was not in a good mood for "parroting about" with the astro-jargon because I was thinking about your heartfelt letter. How could I reply to that? There wasn’t going to be any simple astrological insight that would make it better—only perhaps the knowing that I was hearing and feeling it .love, friendship, caring...whatever.... and I was loving  the reflection you gave about the Moon and Pluto, and how the resonance between what happened and the astrological symbolism made you feel that you were part of a larger whole--you have been through a sacred wounding known to many women. It was a wise letter.

So now, instead of talking Saturn Returns and astrological aspects, I’d rather share with you these feelings that came up as I was having my morning coffee—this is what I wrote in my journal:

“When someone deeply listens to you, the fist-muscle of the heart relaxes and opens, in sweet surprise. When someone deeply listens to you, you begin to breathe. The heart extends itself like a child’s up-reaching hand and is held. It’s as if a cup that was half-empty now fills with waters of unexpected grace, and the touch of their eyes on your Soul opens the floodgates to healing tears. When someone holds you in their heart, listening deeply with words both said and unsaid, the heart rejoices… and you come to know yourself for the first time as worthy, whole and holy. In this sacred moment of time, there is love.”

I hope I have listened to you this way. I hold you in my heart….and this is what I send to you this morning, Kendra~


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Private Papers of a Reluctant Astrologer: Fifth Letter

Dear Isabelle~

I was reading your book last night about the North and South Nodes, and when I read what you wrote in it about my Nodes, my boyfriend, Carl, said it was all “magical thinking.” Well, you know what? I don’t care, because what you wrote about the Nodes, destiny, fate, and especially my North Node in Leo really touched something deep inside me and it felt right…very right. I also haven’t told you something. Not just about the fortune-tellers prediction…

OK—this is what happened: I was re-reading about my Nodes—my life direction and soul purpose as you say—and it was so synchronistic that you used Joni Mitchell as an example of this North Node Leo pattern! You said it was “time to come in from the cold.” Did you know that’s a line from one of her songs? And—I was listening to that song at the exact moment of reading your words about North Node Leo to Carl --talk about synchronicity!

You said: “ The soul purpose here is to create loving connections with others in order to heal a sense of being the outsider or the persecuted one. By leaving behind harsh judgments of myself or others, the idea now in this life is to ‘come in from the cold’ and become one of us. Your need is to open your heart, and make your presence felt—dare to shine and step forward…be effective and compelling rather than being concerned about being right.”

Then you said that the “shadow with these Nodes is an entrenched fear that entices one to be controlling, inflexible or stubborn…but that having a sense of humor shows that one knows or can contain the pain of life, and can accept the drama of it all as well.”

OK, well here it is. I’m pregnant. And that astrologer was predicting that my relationship was going to break up when transiting Saturn reached my “Seventh House” next winter—and he was also saying that unless I change something in me, I’ll never have a relationship! And then he started saying Scorpio Sun and Leo North Node was too controlling, that we’re drama queens, and yet I feel like an exile, not a queen! I feel “out of the circle” as it is, different and alienated, and that’s my fear…that I don’t know how to love and be loved. That’s the South Node Aquarius that I coming from and can’t seem to leave behind.

Well, as I was reading this to Carl he just acted bored and like I was out of my mind, and I got really angry at him. I told him if he didn’t care for me and how I feel inside, then what were we about? I tried to point to his Nodes in your book, but he didn’t even want to look at his own patterns.

It got worse—I showed him the letter between us about my Moon in Cancer and we came to talking about children, and he said he didn’t want children. Period. And I said, guess what? I’m pregnant! Yes, it’s true. I cried, and apologized, and said it was all a big mistake, and he said—get an abortion. Nothing about how it was his “mistake” too. Nothing about feelings or possibilities. Then my rage turned black, and I said yes I would—I’d get an abortion right now! I’m aborting you right now! I screamed. And I threw him out the door.

OK, some drama, I know. But with my back against the door, I started crying and then the tears stopped, and I felt and a certain coolness came over me. I’m angry at my own stupidity for choosing such a cold man, and that it had to come to this. Maybe I do need to dare (with my Aries rising) and to be open-hearted (Leo) and to stop holding it all inside and being secretive (my planets in Scorpio.) You once told me that “the exiled heretic must take a stand and make a Presence in the world”—do something big—well I made a big mistake with him. And now I have to decide what I really will do.

So this is the Saturn Return. So tell me what you think, and send me a copy of your chart too, if you don’t mind. Somehow studying astrology and spirituality while I’m dealing with all this feels like the only good thing happening right now.