The lunar nodes mark the point at which the path of the Moon crosses the ecliptic, the path that the Sun takes through the constellations as we observe its movement from Earth. The Nodes are connected to experiences which feel fated, and we can see this idea in practice when we look at an eclipse. Eclipses occur at a lunation (lunar event) in which the Sun and Moon are within 15 degrees of the Nodes, activating a trigger of the past which requires something to happen before we can move forward.
Unlike other planetary bodies, the nodes move backwards in their apparent motion from our perspective on Earth. (This excellent article explains why.)
The South Node is exactly opposite the North Node as they move backwards through the signs, moving from one polarity of opposites to the previous one. Unlike the traditional order in which we progress from the initiation of Aries to the solidification of Taurus, and then on to the diversification of Gemini to the connectivity of Cancer (and so on), the Nodes take us on a journey to retrace our steps into the past where we must clean up past karma before moving forwards.
The North Node has been in Cancer (family, feelings) since November 2018, with the South Node in Capricorn (career, societal expectations), setting up a polarity between the Moon, ruler of Cancer, and Saturn, ruler of Capricorn. Where Capricorn says “suck it up, and just do what’s required with every man for himself,” Cancer says “but the world is bleeding and I can’t bear it.” It’s not an accident that the US elections in November 2018 marked historic wins for women, since the Moon is Cancer’s ruling planet and strongly associated with the feminine influence. As the South Node moved backwards through Capricorn it triggered both Saturn and Pluto last year in 2019 (you can read more about that here) and this idea of people (Cancer) vs corporations (Capricorn) has been a hallmark of the transit of the nodes through the Cancer/Capricorn axis.
The nodes will shift into Gemini/Sagittarius on May 5th 2020 and remain there until early 2022. (Astrologers, please note that I use the true node, and not the mean node.) Under this polarity we move into the realm of ideas and philosophy, with the South Node in Sagittarius releasing some attachment to the ideals of religion, and the North Node pulling us towards Gemini in which all ideas are welcome and there is less commitment to finding one Truth. In effect, Gemini is about the small mind and small movements, with Sagittarius reaching far beyond the boundaries of human limitation. Since it’s the South Node of the past that will be activating the Sagittarius archetype, we will likely have to let go of some of the expansiveness of hope and optimism that has kept global enterprise artificially afloat. This is especially true in the US, which has Sagittarius rising in the commonly used Sibley chart and will begin its Pluto Return next year. The South Node was last in Sagittarius in October of 2001, just after September 11th which led to a global contraction around the world. Perhaps it’s not a coincidence that the current virus situation is likely to trigger a similar occurrence.
I’ll be writing more about the US elections as time goes on, but the planetary energies for that time period are looking pretty dicey. The nodal axis will make a challenging square to Neptune, denoting an event of mystery and deception and almost certain confusion, and Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto will align more tightly than they have been since January of this year. I suspect that this time period could mark a return of the virus, as is widely expected anyway due to changes in the weather, but it could also wreak havoc on the 2020 elections. I say this not to worry you, but simply to be aware and keep our eyes open.
On a more personal level, a shift in the nodal axis typically marks a shift in attention and focus. Our beliefs and the means through which they are expressed will become more important. Gemini and Sagittarius are mutable signs which require flexibility to adapt to new situations, and this can be more difficult for those of us (like me!) with cardinal and fixed signs who are more action-oriented or fixed in nature. Both of these signs are concerned with learning – Gemini has a thirst to learn about many things, where Sagittarius is searching for a higher Truth. But it’s the North Node of the future which is in Gemini, suggesting that we must learn to be more flexible in our theologies and our philosophies to adapt to a changing world.