To understand the North Node or Rahu, in either our natal chart, in synastry or in transit, we need to first understand its nature. And to understand its nature, we must first understand its opposite, the South Node or Ketu, as they are both part of the same thread; and every time you have a planet aspecting the North Node, that means that it is also aspecting your South Node.
The South Node is where we’ve already been – it is the something whose body or form we left behind us and yet it is all around us continuously. It’s the beyond shape and form. It is a scent in the air, a familiar fragrance – it is timeless, and formless. It is the monk who prays or meditates – not the monk’s body, but the spirit of the monk, his prayers, which is why the South Node is related to spirituality, mysticism, surrender, trust and faith, the intangible things, and all things which though we can’t touch can still be around us. The South Node “things” remain even when there is no more form nor shape nor skin. So in synastry, contacts with the South Node help create a portal to and of release, and focus on the essence.
It is the that which has peeled its outer layers, and there is a certain clear seeing of ourselves in that area of life, because in the past lives, over many lifetimes, we’ve been peeling all the false layers and masks through the many experiences that we’ve had. So in a way, it’s that which we’ve come to know on a deeper and more intimate level.
It is something that will always feel somewhat familiar and comfortable, and in our times of uncertainty, instability or doubts and fears, we go back to it – because it’s known, and feels like a home, or our most comfortable pillow.
And yet it isn’t the pillow materially, it is the experience of the good night’s sleep, it is the essence of a serene sleep and beautiful dreaming. This essence cannot ever be taken away nor stripped down. So if the South Node will be transiting a relationship planet/house, the essence will not be stripped down though if the person is not right for you aligned to your essence and higher truth, they’d need to be released so that the real one, who will give you the experience your soul longs for, comes your way.
If the South Node is the part that is formless, and all about the essence of things, our North Node is the place we go to form things – it is like our life’s work or calling in this life, as we continue on our way to fulfilling our soul’s purpose and soul’s desires. So our North Node isn’t our “destiny” or even “soul’s desire or purpose”, it is our soul calling towards its fulfillment through the life work we’ll do in this life. A soul desires to unveil itself in its true essence and wholeness, and it takes lifetimes; and in each life time we do work on that path. After each part that is unveiled in essence, through the South Node past lives, we then move towards another part of life that desiring to be unveiled in its true essence, or take a new approach on something we’ve done before but didn’t finish in one life, etc.
So the North Node is where forms arise – it’s where things form to come into being and materiality. It is how our soul comes through to create forms – it’s like atoms coming together and become material. It is like a sculptor who wants to take the intangible desires and shape it, and form it, with his hands. Our North Node isn’t just some thing we come into life to do or even a simple soul’s purpose description or a place of getting things and possessions – it is a path of forming unformed yet things into the material.
Through this forming, we give it a shape to then be observed – and all that is shaped is easier to observe, to then strip down to its essence. Confusing? Well, the reason why we incarnate at all is to allow ourselves the opportunity for a deepening i.e. to know who we are. Energy needs to be shaped to see itself into more awareness. So from pure energy we become 5d, 4d, and then 3d. We have skin, legs, eyes, we have possessions around us and all and everything, and people with whom we interact to reflect to us parts of us so that we learn who we truly are. So with the North Node too, we form things – with the ultimate soul’s intention to then understand their true essence.
For example, North Node in Taurus desires to experience itself through the senses and material things, but its ultimate intention is achieve moksha or liberation through that; and along the way it also learns about self-value and the higher purposes of the senses. Perhaps in a past life with that Scorpio South Node you were too deep into the immaterial and mystical, and you already reached high levels of occult knowledge and even mastery – however – perhaps you neglected the material part of life. Perhaps you were a monk, if it is in Anuradha nakshatra, devoted to the spiritual path, but became too detached from the material world and the physical senses. And the material is just as important as the spiritual, for we are flesh married soul on this earth; and to love the spiritual means to appreciate the material we are given also. Or perhaps you have a Gemini North Node and you come from a past of many lives where you were really great at knowing the high truths, but your wisdom was not too easily understood by the average person, and now, with this Gemini North Node, you come to simplify higher wisdom so that you can reach more people, and shape spiritual concepts into something more easily absorbed and digested. The overall path is the same, you are still moving along that same soul’s purpose and theme throughout the lives, but each time it is refined even more.
The North Node is also sometimes known as maya or illusion, and we can get obsessed with the thought of it. What is obsessing us is the desire towards it because desire is what guides us to do things we haven’t done as much before – and yet these desires are first formed because there was a need for them already created in the world, and if we weren’t meant to experience them or able to have them, they would not have arisen anyway. The North Node provides us a path of soul growth because we form things out of the unmanifest, unknown and uncomfortable; and new sculptures may sometimes not look amazing at first try, but we learn as we continue hands-on moving and shaping and forming.
As every new formation, or sculpture, we learn along the way because it is new, which is why we may often face challenges, uncertainty, doubts, and many obstacles. One of the main lessons is patience and perseverance, as well as being aligned to values, higher principles, the seven virtues, having integrity, and gaining self confidence and self trust as we continue forward despite the uncertainty that this newness brings. When we are not aligned to higher values and the virtues, this is when things become obsessive and we fall into lower compulsions, greed and even lust – because we don’t trust ourselves and we are not willing to put in the effort and persevere. The North Node asks us to follow our northern guiding star of our values and beliefs, and to pave our own destiny forward – which means – the destiny we shape through our actions every day, through our hands, feet and words. The North Node is the place where the past meets the future in the present – because what we choose to do now is also shaping our future and what weaves us into that.
The North Node is never separate from the South Node, they are together, sharing a thread. So our North Node isn’t something “new” we will create in a life or have a new path of life, or a new soul’s purpose – it is the same soul’s purpose, but we are approaching it differently perhaps, or learning a new skill for our sculping so that we create something more wholesome. Our South Node’s gifts and lessons have been over many lifetimes, and we use this wisdom for our current life.
As part of one, they are forever in a dance like the dance of lovers. Sometimes we lean more towards one than the other, and then back again, but they always interweave and even help one another. Sometimes their rhythms, speeds and movements are quite different and even contradictory, sometimes their natures are hard to reconcile, sometimes we don’t feel connected to them, or one of them, at all. Yet both are always dancing to one song only, and that’s the song of our soul, calling us towards itself.
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Cover photography: The Barcelona Pavilion designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.