Questions about past lives and karma are always popular questions that I get regularly. Specifically, I tend to get asked about past life issues and karma that are needed to be dealt with in this lifetime, and how these issues might manifest in the current incarnation. There are different places to look in your Natal Chart to to find unresolved karmic and past life elements, and one of the first place I look (after looking at the North & South Nodes and Pluto and its Polarity Point) is at any planets that may be making a square aspect with the North & South Nodes. If you have any planetary/celestial bodies squaring the Nodes, this formation is known as a “Skipped Step.” A Skipped Step is a planet (or planets) that deal with unresolved, specific issues that you have carried over from previous lives into this lifetime. This may have been an issue (or issues) that you chose to willfully ignore in a past life, or something that you didn’t recognize as an issue, or even something you just didn’t have the time in other incarnations to completely work out. You can have multiple planets square the Nodes (such as in the case of a Stellium square the Nodes, or even just planets in conjunction), and you can also have planets in opposition to one another that both square the Nodes (in the case of the Grand Cross). Just to illustrate what Skipped Steps look like in a natal chart, here is an example:
Now, you may be looking at a chart that looks like my own, or you may be looking at one that doesn’t have the Grand Cross formation, but instead just one planet square the Nodes. Any way you slice it, any sort of square to the Nodes is a Skipped Step (or Steps). I would keep the orbs tighter here with planets and other major celestial bodies square the Nodes (about 6 degrees maximum). Any planet that doesn’t actually square the Node but conjuncts a planet that squares the Node will color the Skipped Step with that planets energy, thus ending up being square it to by proxy. An example of this is Saturn in my own chart above. It would technically be out of orb for me to consider it a Skipped Step on it’s own, but since it is in conjunction with Uranus and Venus, by proxy it becomes part of the Skipped Step theme. Depending on the planets and celestial bodies involved in the Skipped Step, you will be able to get an idea of what exactly was missed or not understood or integrated in your past life, and what you are really supposed to learn and understand in this life. The more planets involved in the this formation, the more likely that these issues have been going on for many lifetimes, have been avoided in some way, and have been compounding and gaining interest. Because these are in a square formation, there is naturally tension that the native is probably unable to avoid or ignore in this lifetime. Squares are almost always things we are forced to deal with, but in the case of squares to the Nodes, you have to deal with them before you can even begin to evolve into your North Node’s soul mission. One way to help yourself along this journey is to look at the “Resolution Node,” which is essentially the Node (either the North or the South Node) that was last in conjunction with the planet (or planets) in the square formation. To do this, you turn the North Node/South Node Axis counter-clockwise to see what planet(s) in the square formation were last in conjunction with what Node. By doing this, you can get a better idea as to how you can resolve these Skipped Step(s) issues. To take an example from my own chart, I need to work through my Uranus, Venus and Saturn shit and I have to go back to the South Node to work through these issues (since the South Node was the last Node in conjunction with these planets). Since Chiron was last in conjunction with my North Node, I would be working through this Skipped Step with this Node. Actually, in the case of a Grand Cross, usually you are working through both steps somehow simultaneously (and are cosmically forced too), just through the different Nodal energies. There is a lot of tension in the Skipped Steps formation, but there is an extreme amount of tension in the Grand Cross Skipped Steps placement.
You can also apply this same concept to Synastry Charts. If you have a Skipped Step (or Skipped Steps) in your own Natal Chart, look to see if your Synastry Partner has a planet/celestial body that conjuncts (specifically the conjunction aspect here) your skipped step(s). If this happens to be the case, this person is generally tied into your Skipped Step issue from a past life. The energy and way they are tied in depends on the planet of theirs that is in conjunction with your Skipped Step (and the area of life they are tied to from past lives depends on the house that holds the conjunction). There will probably be very strong feelings between the two of you, but those feelings may not always “feel” good. There will be a major attraction between the both of you, but there may also be a constant painful lens (unconsciously) on the areas that the Skipped Step person has yet to master. As unexplainably weird as this relationship may feel, the other person who’s planet conjunct the Skipped Step planet in your chart will help you evolve beyond your Skipped Steps and to begin to evolve into your North Node (if you allow them).
More on all of this later 🙂 If you have any questions or comments, let’s talk!
Thank you for an extremely detailed and informative article. My NN is in Cancer in the 9th house. Jupiter in Aries in the 6th house squares my nodal axis. Recently I met someone whose Mars in Aries conjuncts my Jupiter. This is a very intense relationship to say the least. Any thoughts on how to work on my skipped step would be greatly appreciated.
Hey 🙂 I’m glad you liked the article!
It would definitely “poke” at your Jupiter to take some kind of action, probably (what that translates to feeling like and being like would depend on both of your charts – I’d really have to see them).
I sent you both charts via astro.com. Any thoughts would be helpful and appreciated. I noticed you do a Great Attractor reading. Is my sagittarius moon conjunct the GA ?
I sent ya an email back 🙂
Yes, your Moon is conjunct the Great Attractor ^_^
Hi SaturnSeason, great article ! I have a tsquare to my gemini (twelfth house Nodes) from Mars Pluto Uranus conjunction close to my IC and Saturn in pisces in tenth house (MC). I sent you my chart by mail. I had a nodal return last year but i feel stuck
Hi Robi, I wanted to let you know that I shot you an email back 🙂
Ok. So I have been studying astrology since I was an adolescent and I have never heard of this. I have almost every planet with exception of Jupiter in taurus and neptune in scorpio involved in skipped steps.
I don’t know how to post my chart here so I will describe it. Venus, saturn, sun, moon chiron and mercury in Pisces opposed mars pluto and Uranus in virgo in 2nd pisces and 8th virgo house. North node in Gemini in square orb to sun,moon, chiron, mercury and mars and pluto. The other planets conjoin these so they are all involved.
I think I need help to understand this.
Ahhh I’m sorry – yeah I’m not sure how to post pictures on here directly, either.
Damn! That sounds like a lot of skipped step activity, and it’s really super interesting. Even more interesting is the planetary ruler of your North Node (Mercury) is involved, but yet the planetary ruler of your South Node (Jupiter) isn’t involved….which knee jerk makes me think you didn’t play such a hand in all of these becoming skipped steps. It definitely means that whatever is going on here is something that you DO want and need to work through for your North Node mission with Mercury involved (it’s always important, but in your case there is an amplified importance).
So there is some kind of hang up or “snag” with notions involving all these planets, the skipped steps – but it’s so many to come through this way. I do feel like, with the South Node in Sag (not totally sure what house but I would guess the 5th?), and Jupiter in Taurus, this *might* deal with belief or understanding of your own self-expression (per Sag South Node) and perhaps being too fixed in how you believe in your own self worth & value (per Jupiter in Taurus…I’m not sure what house). Those skipped steps are going to tie into whatever is going on with Jupiter and the Sag South Node (and it *might* have been something totally out of your control with Pluto and Uranus squaring the nodes).
If ya ever want me to do something for you, let me know 🙂
Thank you for this informative article! I stumbled upon it since have a Grand Cross in my chart with the Nodal Axis involved. However, I do have a question regarding the “Resolution Node”. You wrote, “To do this, you turn the North Node/South Node Axis clockwise to see what planet(s) in the square formation were last in conjunction with what Node. ” I follow your example and turn your Nodal Axis like a clock pointer clockwise and I get South Node conjunct Chiron while North Node conjunct the cluster of Venus, Uranus and Saturn. It’s the opposite of what you wrote after. How am I getting it wrong? I appreciate your input!
The way I wrote it wouldn’t work….because apparently I’m a huge dork. I should have written “counter-clockwise” It has been fixed. Thank you for pointing that out 🙂
I am delving deeper into my chart and found out that I have a stellium square my north node (north node in Leo, sun/mercury/venus/mars/chiron in Taurus). It honestly makes sense to learn about skipped steps but I’m also feeling overwhelmed by all of these squares!
That’s awesome that you’re taking the initiative to dig deeper into your chart (it’s such an amazing journey). And damn! That’s a lot that you have squaring the nodes! How tight are those orbs between the planets to the North and South Nodes?
Hi there! Thanks for this info. I am having trouble understanding how to locate the planet we look to to resolve the skipped step. In my chart I have N Node in Aries in the 5th and S Node in Libra in the 11th, and Neptune in the 2nd in Cap is making a square to them. (I also have Saturn and Uranus in the 2nd, but they don’t make exact squares I dont think). Which planet would I look to to find the resolution for the Neptune skipped step?Thank you!
Your resolution node would be the South Node in Libra in the 11th. You look to the planet that is left of the skipped step planet. I hope this helps ^_^
I have a synastry grid on 2 people with squares to both the Nnode and Snodes(all squares). This is present in both the natal and the progressed charts. Is this a skipped step ? How do I begin to decipher this ? This chart is of a mother and son. The son has been in a toxic relationship and recently moved back home with his mom. I recommended professional counseling. I’ve been working on his chart so I can give the mom some clues to his behaviors and found this yesterday. Any suggestions would be helpful….Thanks
Which planets are involved/are skipped steps? Is this going on in both of their natal charts, or just in the synastry?
Yes, his venus square my Nodal Axis and falls in my 5th house. And my moon, jupiter, sun square his Nodal Axis, and pluto and neptune trine his North Node and sextile his South Node. I was wondering about the karmic part. Are all these aspects related to my karma or his? I am very curios about this and could not find much about all of these aspects.
Thank you a lot for taking the time to answear.
It sounds like there is a lot going on there. If you wouldn’t mind emailing me the chart, it would be easier to see it all that way. If you can create the chart from Astro.com, all the better. My email is email@example.com
Hi, I have a question related to the NN square Venus in syhastry. My friend has his venus in in my 5th house and he has a venus square NN in his chart. Can I get some clue about this? Thank you
Can you send me the chart or post the chart on here (I’m pretty visual and like to be able to see things to connect the dots, lol). In his own chart, he’s going to need to work through something regarding love and value that wasn’t figured out properly in his most recent previous life. What exactly that is depends on where his North Node/South Node Axis falls (sign/house) and the rest of his chart. Is his Venus square your Nodal Axis as well, or does it just fall in your 5th house?
Hi, I have a question related to the NN square Venus in syhastry. My friend has his venus in in my 5th house and he has a venus square NN in his chart. Can I get some clue about this. Thank you
Hey Lady ^_^ Thanks for the question!
Let’s see….it’s definitely a skipped step. I see this as manifesting in this lifetime as a tension between what one is driven to do and what one’s North Node mission actually is. One thing this could mean is maybe in previous lives (or just a past life) there was too much emphasis on your drive towards material success (like, possibly overwhelmingly aggressive and driven towards material success). Maybe you let material success define your self worth (or it was very tied together somehow). Issues with money management could also be possible here, Aries being impulsive and wanting what they want and wanting it now (and not really giving a damn how what they want effects their finances). There could also be issues with anger and how you express it. Maybe in previous lives you expressed it too freely, as if you were always gearing up for some kind of battle (and finding some kind of security in that you could actually do battle, somehow being tied into your self worth). If any of those are the case from previous lives, they will probably show up somehow in this incarnation with a glaring sort of spotlight on the issue(s), forcing you to do something about it. To grow and evolve beyond it. ^_^
Thanks so much !
I feel like the interception plays a major role in all this because I cannot identify with Mars in Aries (like, at all).
I don’t have „anger issues“, I’m not aggressive, I hate fighting (for myself) and I don’t have a spending issues – all things that my Mars placement would suggest.
The only thing that would kinda make sense is „fighting about „territory““ but not in the way that I am fighting but more that I am forced to fight (Intercepted Mars?) for my space / home / place (2nd House) and also have to fight (Mars) for my self-worth (2H) but have a hard time doing that (interception) and would rather not (also interception).
I‘ve come to feel like the interception of Aries/Mars is extremely important to my chart. All interceptions, for that matter (as I have another one)..
Thank you for your reply !!
I’m sorry that my little part about intercepted houses didn’t make it into my original comment. I had some editing issues (meaning I accidentally deleted some of my original comment, ha ha ha). I thought I had restored the whole thing, but I guess that part didn’t make it. 🤦♀️
Intercepted Houses and the planets in them can have a harder time being expressed, having their energy expressed. Now, there is another theory about Skipped Steps that these qualities exist in the native (and did in past lives), but that there is a blind spot of sorts there where the person can’t see these traits exist, or that they aren’t able to harness that planet (and houses) energy, possibly due to past life abuses of that energy. So in this lifetime, the glaring spotlight of the squares tension is about consciously pulling that energy out into the open and using it in a constructive and good way. I don’t typically read Skipped Steps this way, but I could see how this could ring true in cases like yours with interceptions.
Yeah, I would agree that Mars is particularly important, not only from an intercepted point of view, but also from this Skipped Step point of view. 🙂
Great article !
I‘m kinda new to NN/SN even if I understand the basics .. my NN (early Cap, 12H) is in an exact square to my Intercepted Mars in Aries, 2H.
How would you interpret that ?