Follow your imagination, and let your heart run wild. Quite your mind, and let your soul speak. This moon is not about structure or direction. It is about growth and transformation, in the gloriously undefined manner that can only mean Pisces energy is in the air. No one said everything has to make sense all at once. In fact, sometimes all that matters is weather it feels right. This is one of those times.
Many people think of Halloween as the Witches’ holiday. It is certainly evolved from our holiday, and it shares some themes. But I don’t consider them one in the same. Not at all. Halloween is a fun holiday for kids, Read More »
Here in Northern California, the weather is just turning cold as October leaves us and November arrives. Nearly every year I have a vegetable garden, and this is the time of year it begins fading. The plants are yellowing and straggly. They bear the weight of a few oversized fruits that were missed during harvest, and a few underdeveloped ones that set too late to ripen. Sometimes we’ve already had a frost, killing off the green leaves. Yet, it doesn’t feel sad or tired. It takes on a notably peaceful atmosphere.
Aries is known as the sign of the warrior, quick to act and quick to react. That gives today’s New Moon an edgy feeling of restlessness and spontaneity. While it’s always wise to look before you leap, Aries doesn’t always give much time for that and you might need to answer quickly if opportunity comes knocking!
Lovely Luna, bright and bold, glowing with the power of old… She is called by many names, worshiped in many ways. Few would argue that, whatever name you give her, the Moon is the guiding light of Witches and Pagans. She fascinates and enchants; guides and empowers. We plan our spells and plant our gardens by the phases of the Moon.
The waxing and waning Moon have very different energies. Under waxing Moon the light is increasing, and the time is right to build, grow, and create. Under waning Moon the light is decreasing and the time is right for endings, release, depth and darkness. It is very similar to the increasing light of the waxing year from Yule to Midsummer, and the decreasing light in the waning year from Midsummer to Yule. In fact, the phases of the Moon mirror the Wheel of the Year.
Beyond waxing and waning, the Moon phases are commonly broken down into quarters. These quarters are associated with the seasonal sabbats. (New Moon – Yule; First Quarter Ostara; Full Moon – Midsummer; Last Quarter Moon Mabon) Like the other four spokes in the Wheel of the Year, the other four Moon phases are rarely acknowledged except in the esoteric or astrological.
The 8 phases of the Moon are:
- The New Moon Phase from 0º to 45º is the first half of the New Moon Quarter – it begins with New Moon. The New Moon Phase is a time of excitement, new ideas and beginnings, forming goals, and self-discovery.
- The Crescent Moon Phase is from 45º to 90º and is the second half of the New Moon Quarter. It is often called Waxing Crescent, especially in astronomy. The Crescent Phase is a time of activity, developing resources, and forward momentum.
- The First Quarter Phase from 90º to 135º is the first half of the First Quarter. The First Quarter Phase is a time of individuality, planning, structuring, and manifestation.
- The Gibbous Moon Phase from 135º to 180º is the second half of the First Quarter – it is the last few days before Full Moon. It is often called Waxing Gibbous, especially in astronomy. The Gibbous Phase is a time of analysis, perfecting, refining and achieving.
- The Full Moon Phase from 180º to 225º is the first half of the Full Moon Quarter – it begins with Full Moon. The Full Moon Phase is a time of awareness, objectivity, and endings.
- The Disseminating Moon Phase from 225º to 270º is the second half of the Full Moon Quarter. It is often called Waning Gibbous, especially in astronomy. The Disseminating Phase is a time of communication, openness, and sharing resources.
- The Last Quarter Phase from 270º to 315º is the first half of the Last Quarter. The Last Quarter Phase is a time of transformation, acceptance, and learning.
- The Balsamic Moon Phase from 315º to 0º is the second half of the Last Quarter – it is the last few days before Full Moon. It is often called Waning Gibbous, especially in astronomy. The Balsamic Phase is a time of quiet, withdrawal, and incubation of ideas for the next cycle.
By the Light (and Dark) of the Moon is a 9 part series focusing on the magick of the lunar cycle. The first post is the introduction. Thereafter, each month, I will post a new article exploring one phase, in depth.
New Moon is the time for new ideas, directions, projects, and perspectives. People often time things to begin on New Moon for maximum cosmic momentum, but today doesn’t have to be a “launch date.” The seed of a new cycle is just beginning to sprout. Inspiration, enthusiasm, synchronicity, and intuition are just as important as details and definitive plans Read More »
It is easy to determine the date of some holidays, as they are printed on virtually every calendar. Witches don’t have it so easy. After all, how many calendars (with the exception of Wiccan ones) list Beltane? Even holidays that coincide with equinoxes can be tricky, because the calendar typically lists the first FULL day of a season. So, if the Spring Equinox occurred at 1:00 pm on Monday, the calendar might list Tuesday as the first day of spring.
At least Samhain is easy. Everyone knows when Halloween is, and they are on the same day. Or not. It all depends on your method of calculation. It can be one of three days. I will explain the differences, but if you came here to find out what day is right , you’re going to be disappointed – because only you can answer that. Like most things in the Craft, there are different methods, different opinions, and I firmly believe the “right” answer is what feels right and works well for you. Read More »
Eclipses, feared by some and beloved by others, are known as harbingers of change. Friday’s Full Moon is no exception. In fact, the winds of change may be blowing a bit harder than usual. The Moon will be in Sagittarius, facing off against a powerful Gemini Sun. These are both mutable signs, the most changeable and free-flowing influences of the zodiac. In fact, the eclipse chart is predominantly mutable, with a strong emphasis on Gemini. Along with the sun, we have expansive Jupiter, and a promising Venus-Mercury conjunction, occupying the sign of the twins.
Gemini is the most restless energy there is, flitting to and fro seeming to accomplish nothing. The secret being, it’s not meant to be something. Gemini is about information, experience, interaction, ideas, details…
The result of this elliptical face-off is a change of perspective, understanding, and direction. Exactly how it will manifest in your life, and what area it will manifest in, depend heavily on your own birth chart. Every person is different. But, for most people, these three steps are key to making the most of the energy: Keep an open mind, embrace inner change, look before you leap.
Many astrologers will tell you that a healthy moon is the key to happiness. Why? Your Moon, that is the position of the Moon in your birth chart, is your emotional hub.
Healthy relationships start with healthy hearts. It can be easy to reason away negative emotions, at least in your mind. The problems is that emotions do not actually live in your mind, so this approach often results in a disconnect.
“Sure, I’m okay,” you think. “There’s no reason to be angry, and I shouldn’t take it personally. I knew this kind of situation would happen from time to time. I anticipated it, and accepted it. How silly would I be to get upset now?” Great. So you’ve thought it through, and you’re just fine. Except you’re not fine. You didn’t work through any emotions. You don’t even know why you’re upset about something so trivial. The only conclusion you came to is that you’re wrong. In reality, the only “wrong” here is that conclusion. Emotions are never wrong. Or right. They just are. Sometimes it is wrong to act on emotions, to use them in decision making, but it is never wrong to feel them. And this simple reality changes everything.
Although some Pagans and Wiccans call Samhain by the name “Halloween” I think of them as two different holidays. Halloween falls on the last day of October. It is a fun and festive holiday for children of all faiths. Samhain is a deeply spiritual holiday, and a powerful moment in time. It falls exactly halfway between Autumn Equinox and Winter Solstice. The date is not exactly the same every year, just as the Equinox dates vary. In 2012, Samhain falls on November 6th at 4:20 pm. According to Celtic tradition, the Sabbats are celebrated on the eve, making the actual holiday November 5th.