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The Art and Science of Reflexology and Astrology by Lesley-Ann Bowles

Lesley-Ann Bowles (MAR) is a British reflexologist and astrologer who combines her skills to help women with infertility problems to conceive. Through her knowledge of astrology, she has discovered a method of predicting precisely when a woman will ovulate and this has led to a very high conception success rate in her clinic.

This article was originally published by the International Institute of Reflexology (UK)

“In cases of difficult psychological diagnosis I usually get a horoscope. I have very often found that the astrological data elucidated certain points which I otherwise would have been unable to understand.” C.G. Jung (187-1961)

“A physic without astrology is like a lamp without oil”. Nicolas Culpeper (17th century).

Almost 10 years ago I embarked upon a quest to find a naturopathic therapy commensurate with the holistic approach I employed within my practice of psychologist/astrologer. The constant stream of clients, whose problems ensued from or were exacerbated by allopathic medicine, prompted me to look for a medium which would enable me to treat both soma and psyche.

The priest/healer Hypocrates once wrote “ A physician without the knowledge of astrology had better call himself a fool rather than a physician”. Along with Aesculapius (the greek good of healing) he also believed that to achieve total healing of a patient, mind body and spirit must be treated as a whole. This view is in total contrast to the practice of orthodox medicine today, so it is ironic that, until recently, all doctors were obliged to take the hypocratic oath (circa 420 BC) which began “I swear by Apollo the physician by Aesculapius...etc”.

Does the aforementioned term priest-healer strike a cord? For me it did. The ancient Egyptians used astrology for everything from medicine to building the pyramids. I knew of the carvings on the tomb wall of the priest-healer Ankhamor, but at a much later date I was delighted to read the article by Delphine Hall (reprinted in FootPrints June, 1998) which shed so much light on the true significance of the carvings. Delphine describes how she discovered by reversing the pictures of the carvings the Ankh was revealed. It is incredible that the sacred Ankh was not only a part of the name of the priest-healer himself, but also pictorially encompassed within his main medium of healing.

Undoubtedly reflexology was once at the forefront of ancient mainstream medicine, certainly not complementary to it. Still, what goes around comes around, and today an ever increasing number of us are becoming enlightened to the fact that we are all pure energy. We are also self-healing and what better way to facilitate that healing than reflexology; a channel of healing so profoundly powerful it is depicted embracing the Ankh – the ancient symbol of life and joy!

In my search for the right therapy, I read Eunice Ingham’s wonderful books and somehow felt inexorably drawn to reflexology. When I discovered that Eunice Ingham, born 24.2.1889, was a fellow sun-sign Pisces, it became clear why. Pisces rules the feet, and along with its ruling planet Neptune, rules reflexology.

Having decided that reflexology was the route by which I could achieve my aims. I duly enrolled in a practitioners’ course teaching the Ingham Method and later studied ART (Clinical Reflexology) with Tony Porter and have been using his techniques ever since. His work on meridians is a brilliant innovation. His meridian charts (with special emphasis on gynaecological/reproductive treatment areas) have been indispensable. Now I have also matched the meridians with their 12 zodiac rulership signs (see table below).

Way back in my pre-reflexology days the alarming rise in the number of my clients with infertility problems prompted me to search for an astrological solution. I started with the fact that the moon controls a woman’s natural menstrual cycle. The Lunar cycle takes 29 ½ days and the NATURAL menstrual cycle also takes 29 ½ days – NOT 28 DAYS. This misconception is the result of a 2000 year old contrivance to control the natural rhythms of the female cycle that culminated in the false linear time concept of the birth control pill which induced a 28 day straight line cycle.

The natural cycle is in synchronization with the cycle of the moon. Ovulation takes place around the three days of the full moon and menstruation commences on or around the new moon. The introduction of the electric light globe has further affected the natural biological rhythm which was so dependent on the light of the full moon.

Studies by two American doctors in the 1960s involving ½ million women over 8 years, showed that more conceptions took place around the full moon than at any other time of the month. The least number of conceptions took place on the three days around the new moon, demonstrating that women at that time were in sync with the moon. However, since the introduction of the contraceptive pill, women’s natural cycles (and their fertility) have been badly damaged by the presence of so many oestrogen mimicking chemicals in our environment. This adversely affects the reliability of self-testing ovulation kits, only recently introduced. The kits contain 7 test sticks with instructions to use them between 10-17 days of the cycle. It was recently estimated that only one third of women ovulate within this period.

The old wives’ tale about it not being possible to conceive during menstruation was at the time based on fact, ie that the ‘moon/woman’ cycle was a constant. On the basis that two-thirds of women ovulate between days 1-9 and 18-1 - yet are being told that days 10-17 give the best chance of conception - it is no wonder that so many women are referred to subfertility clinics and a miracle if conception takes place at all! In the last few months two of my clients have ovulated simultaneously with the onset of their periods. Subfertility clinics today are using the rhythm/calendar method devised in the 1940s. Women are told the best time to conceive is 14 days before the period is due, based on the mistaken belief that the luteal phase is a fixed gap of 14 days; for two-thirds of women this timing is either too early or too late.

Also in current use at the clinics is the temperature method introduced in the 1950s by Professor John Marshall. It is based on the dip and rise of a woman’s body temperature pre and post ovulation. Although this method confirms ovulation, it does not provide warning of approaching ovulation. The advice at the clinics is to try for conception when the temperature dips and again when it rises. If taken earlier than usual the temperature could dip on any day while waiting for the rise (hormone assays have shown that the rise can be delayed up to two days post ovulation). This means the 8-24 hour egg fertilization ‘window’ could be well and truly shut. Clinics have not yet caught up with facts re the life span of the ovum and still regard two days as the life span.

Eventually I found the astrological answer to this conception/contraception conundrum. There is an approximate two-hour period each lunar month (29.5 days) when the sun and moon will be the exact number of degrees apart as they were at each individual woman’s time of birth. It is within this two-hour time span that always and without exception ovulation will take place. This does NOT apply to women who have taken synthetic hormones, or have had an I.U.D. within a 3-6 month period. In order to calculate this exact two-hour time period, a woman’s precise time of birth must be known, as well as the day, month, year and place of birth. If the birth time is unknown it is still possible to calculate the ovulation time to within 24 hours and adding two days either side provides a foolproof means of contraception.

In another study in the 1960s, Dr Eugen Jonas, a Czechoslovakian gynaecologist, set up a fertility clinic and carried out scientifically controlled tests on thousands of women using this astrological method. His tests resulted in a consistent 98% accuracy. Dr Karl Rechnite, a Professor of Gynaecology in Budapest, confirmed Dr Jonas’s work. The failed 2%? Dr Jonas was not using the art of interpretive Astrology, he was using the mathematical science of Astrology to calculate the precise movements of the luminaries. As this process is pure math, unless he miscalculated, there are only two possible explanations for the 2% failure:

1) The wrong birth date was given

2) The women involved did not adhere to the abstinence period given to them by Dr Jonas’ clinic

I have personally used this method 100% successfully for many years! I would like to make it crystal clear that no matter if a woman ovulates on day 1 of her cycle one month and day 27 the next, her ovulation time can be precisely pinpointed using this method. As mentioned earlier, two of my current clients ovulated on the same day as menstruation began. One of them was so incredulous, she used a left-over test stick to check that the ovulation date I had given her was accurate. It was.

This infallible solution to the prediction of precise ovulation times (these dates can be given months, even years, in advance) has allowed women to plan ahead when trying to conceive. NO thermometers, NO calendars and more recently NO little test kits.

As an example: A woman’s time may fall on a Tuesday afternoon between 2.15 and 3.15pm, when both she and her partner may be working in their respective places of work. Because her ‘times’ can be given so far in advance, they can arrange to co-ordinate time off to coincide with the given time for any particular month.

Quite recently one couple (whose times fell on weekdays for three consecutive months) took two days’ holiday leave per month for three months. They booked short breaks in Paris, Venice and Amsterdam. Venice was very successful! Yet another couple took a trip to Cerne Abbas in Dorset, UK - paying their respects to the giant proved to be a positive manoeuvre!

With no more worrying that the ‘important time’ may arrive at an ‘inopportune time’ much of the psychological pressure leading to stress is removed from the situation. Stress induces a woman’s anterior pituitary to produce prolactin, which not only stimulates milk production after giving birth but also stops ovulation. Although not recommended as a reliable means of contraception for nursing mothers, it does indicate another possible negative when trying to conceive.

During the following nine years, I used this astrological method, in conjunction with counselling and nutrition (also aromatherapy and massage) to help hundreds of clients, friends and colleagues to conceive. Of course, if a woman is ovulating but has blocked fallopian tubes etc, or if her partner’s sperm is well below average count or motility, knowing her ovulation time will be of little help.

As I am reluctant to give false hope, I screen out this category of client at the point of initial consultation. The “let’s see how it goes’ way of working is not my way, as I consider it unprofessional and unprincipled. Happily, since integrating reflexology into the infertility programme, clients falling into this category are few. Over the past 13 years, the last nine of which I have given over my entire practice to treating those with infertility problems, the total number I have screened out is 22.

The following averages are based on the number of clients who completed a one-year infertility programme. I do not usually treat clients for longer than a year, with the exception of those whose toxicity levels have not been normalised, ie high mercury levels sometimes involve additional dentistry. Also some cases require chiropractic when structural distortions are affecting function.

It is to be noted that all conceptions resulting from my treatment programme are of the 100% natural kind. I don't play any part in complementing the ‘assisted’ kind. The exception has been those couples who have needed donor sperm. ( eg Male partner had zero sperm count, due to earlier cancer treatment, or single women). NO drugs were used, I still calculated ovulation dates, and these were "backed up" by Ultra sound scan ( every 2 days after the woman's period) for precise ovulation time: when IUI was used to introduce the donor sperm. These women had at least 4 to 6 months Reflexology prior to insemination, all conceived at the first try. NB: I have found a couple of London clinics,who are amenable to this way of working,although it did take some persuading!

Between February 2001 and June 2002, out of a group of 37 women, 27 had conceived within 10 months. A further 4 women conceived within 14 months, making a total of 31. This gives an average of 84%. The group of women were between 34 and 49 years, an average age of 42. All but 5 of the 31 had undergone between one and 5 failed cycles each of either IVF GIFT or ICSI (a procedure where a single sperm is injected into an egg). All 31 have since given birth to healthy children between 7lbs 7ozs and 9lbs 3ozs.

All 31 received between 3-4 months of 1hour weekly reflexology, continuing with fortnightly treatments until conceiving. Twenty eight continued with fortnightly-monthly reflexology until giving birth. Of the 31 women, 15 of their male partners received weekly to fortnightly reflexology. (I have it on good authority that it does help raise the libido for BOTH partners!)

All partners had a preconceptual nutritional care programme and were advised to use a barrier method of contraception until the first conception date had been given (3-4 months). There are two reasons for this advice. The first is to ensure that both partners have reached optimum health levels before trying to conceive, which will contribute towards the birth of a healthy child.

If optimum health is not achieved by both parents prior to conception there is a much higher risk of miscarriage or the birth of a malformed child. Reflexology is a powerful tool for the removal of blocked energy, eg: blocked fallopian tubes may be unblocked, and allow for conception before the mother’s energies have been sufficiently balanced to sustain a full-term pregnancy. The second reason is to remove the pressure from the “only having sex to try and conceive, then getting disappointed when a period shows up” syndrome.

Of the 6 failed cases, 2 worked in professions which involved taking long-haul trips to Australia, America and the Far East. It has been established that air travel decreases melatonin levels. Melatonin controls the release of FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) and LH (lutinising hormone) the two reproductive hormones which trigger ovulation. The less melatonin there is, the higher the chance of an ovulation. It was not possible to rebalance the endocrine system of either of these women, as they missed so many of their treatment sessions. The remaining 4 had partners who, although willing to take nutritional supplements, were not prepared to give up alcohol, tobacco and caffeine. Of the 6 male partners, none had reflexology.

I am often asked if it is possible to pre-plan the gender of a child. The answer is yes, although owing to the more complex nature of the programme involved, it is not suitable for infertile couples.

Case Study

The expediency of precise conception dates is clearly illustrated by the following case. Anne had severely damaged fallopian tubes, resulting from the removal of a previous ectopic pregnancy. Having been told she would never conceive naturally, she had subsequently had two failed attempts with GIFT (a procedure where eggs are removed and placed separately from the partner’s sperm, at the outer edges of the fallopian tubes) and one failed attempt at IVF. Two months after this, at age 38, her GP (whose sister had conceived with my treatment programme in similar circumstances to Anne’s case) recommended her to me for treatment.

Four months and fifteen days later, Anne conceived naturally. EXACTLY five weeks later, due to slight bleeding, Anne was advised by a locum GP to go to the early pregnancy unit at St Thomas Hospital. Before being given ultra sound, she was reassured that bleeding was quite normal at this stage. During the scan this sound advice was brushed aside when, bowing to the ‘supreme superiority of the machine’;Anne was told that as a heartbeat could not be found, the embryo was not viable, and that she would almost certainly ‘lose it’. I explained to a very distraught Anne that the ultra-sound can only detect a heartbeat at a minimum of seven weeks’ gestation. Anne was only five weeks pregnant but because doctors calculate the approximate date of conception from the first day of the woman’s last menstrual period, 2 weeks and 5 days were added to her very definite 5 weeks.

The only reason Anne would lose her baby was because she had been told she would! In order to paint a more positive picture for her, I told her something else which can also be accurately predicted from the astrological calculation of conception time and date. I told her that her little GIRL would be just fine!

At the end of her pregnancy, Anne asked me to bring her final appointment forward, having been told by the clinic that her baby may have to be induced as it was a fortnight overdue. In fact there were two days to due date. Anne was dreading returning to the clinic for a sweep the following day. So I gave her a treatment (combination of appropriate meridians and small toes) that very evening, and reflexology helped the very beautiful, non-viable embryo named Catherine Lesley to be born naturally, one day early.

Unfortunately these ‘misconception date’ sagas are all too common. Like the old adage, I believe that medical machinery, like fire and imagination, may make a GOOD SERVANT – but all three make BAD MASTERS.

May we all be guided by the planets to practise our ancient Art and Science of Reflexology with wisdom, integrity and infinite compassion.

ARIES Head - Face (except the nose) - Cerebral hemispheres of the brain
TAURUS Neck - Throat - Larynx Tonsils - Carotid arteries Thyroid - - Jugular vein
GEMINI Shoulders - Arms - Hands - Lungs - Thymus - Upper ribs
CANCER Stomach - Diaphragm - Breasts - Lymphatic system
LEO Heart - Aorta - The back and spinal cord
VIRGO Large and small intestines - Pancreas
LIBRA Kidneys - Equilibrium and balance
SCORPIO Nose - Genitals - Descending colon - Rectum - Urethra - Blood
SAGITTARIUS Hips - Thighs - Liver - Veins - Femur bone - Sacral region
CAPRICORN Teeth - Bones - Kneecap - Skin
AQUARIUS Lower legs - Ankles - Varicose Veins - Circulation
PISCES The feet

Lesley-Ann Bowles Bsc hons, MAR, is a member of the Astrological Lodge of London. She may be contacted at her London based clinic for further information on obtaining a set of pre-ovulation dates and times, or a complete infertility programme by email: or telephone: 0207 3946403

© Lesley Ann-Bowles. Uploaded May 2006.

Decumbiture & Medical Astrology