Between the world of pure spiritual Lights (luces victoriales, the world of the ‘Mothers’ in the terminology of Ishraq) and the sensory universe, at the boundary of the ninth Sphere*… there opens a mundus imaginalis which is a concrete spiritual world of archetype-Figures, apparitional Forms … vision of it in actuality is vouchsafed to the visionary apperception of the Active Imagination.
“The Man of Light in Iranian Sufism” by Henri Corbin
The Nodes of the Moon along with that other set of ‘insubstantial’ points, the antiscia, are easily overlooked. In the article entitled, “A Pilgrim’s Staff: Anno 1514” (to be found here at Altair Astrology) the discussion was centred around the MC/IC axis of the election chart for the Abbey Church of Niederalteich, near Regensburg Germany. There I used the image of a pilgrim’s staff to describe the Nodes placed on the MC/IC axis. Now I would like to elaborate a little more on this theme.
The Nodes always form an axis, they are in their insubstantiality not unlike that space that divides the right from the left lobe of the brain, which both is and isn’t. I would like to suggest that when placed on the angles or in a mutable sign that more attention should be given to them. The MC/IC axis is especially important as here the depths and the heights of the chart are spanned. The depths in one respect being that realm of consciousness that we experience in the deepest of sleep and the heights that of fully concentrated waking consciousness. If the depths are breached we have on one side what may be termed ancestral or pre-birth memory, but there is also the abyss teeming with the shells of lost consciousness. If the heights are extended we have all levels of imagination, intuition and inspiration along with what may be called ‘future memory’, prophecy.
The Nodes on the MC/IC axis then represent that pathway, between the world of waking and sleeping, that belongs to Imagination, Dream and Prophecy. Here may be found that realm which may stream into Art, whether, musical, poetic or pictorial. Here may also be found the lucid dreamer who in dreaming knows he dreams and yet experiences a depth of ‘sense perception’ that is thought only to belong to waking experience. Here is the pathway that may be said to lead to what Henri Corbin describes as the mundus imaginalis a realm of reality that is neither here nor there. This way is appropriately marked by the crossing of the path of the Moon along the path of the Sun.
* the Sky without Stars – th.