The Eight Lunar Phases
Several months ago during a gathering I was asked which moon was the best to have ceremony for, the new moon, or the full moon. I answered that I thought all eight phases were important. I promised that I would explain this further in the newsletter.
Now that we are free of the closing out of 2016 energies, and free of most of last year’s very hard lessons and burdens, we can finally begin this new year’s energy of opportunity, love, and new beginnings. A perfect time to re-connect with Mother Earth and the heavens to learn from all the wisdom and knowledge, (ancient and future); they are so willing to share.
One common trend among Native American tribes was that people weren’t interested in time for the sake of time itself. There were no clocks or calendars. And so time was told by the ebb and flow of tides, by the ripening of fruit and vegetables, by the sun’s position in the sky, by watching stars rise and fall, or by knowing when the bears awake from hibernation. Native Americans did track and name the lunar cycles, usually from one new moon to the next. Lunar cycles were named after what was happening in nature at the time. For instance, one tribe named one lunar cycle “laying geese”.
Over the years for many people, the acknowledgement and ceremonies of the phases of the moon have been combined into two events: the New Moon and the Full Moon. Consider looking at the phases one at a time and see how their energies effects how you feel.
Following the Lunar Cycle as part of our spiritual devotions can be very fulfilling in developing a deeper connection with our planet, Mother Earth, and Father Sky.
The Eight Lunar Phases
New Moon: New beginnings, fresh start, blank page.
Crescent Moon: Intention, hopes, and wishes
First Quarter Moon: Challenges, decisions, action.
Gibbous Moon: Adjust, refine, edit.
Full Moon: Signed, sealed, and stamped.
Disseminating Moon: Gratitude, sharing, enthusiasm.
Last Quarter Moon: Release, let go, forgive.
Balsamic Moon: Surrender, rest, and recuperate.
The Lunar Phases begin at the New Moon. Today it is all figured out when the actual New Moon occurs, but in ancient days the New Moon began at the first observance of the crescent Moon.
As we cannot see the actual New Moon, the Dark of the Moon is a time for a fresh start, a clean slate, and a new beginning. It’s a time of gathering our thoughts, planning our movement, and getting ready for declaring it at the Crescent Moon.
The Crescent Moon is the time to announce our intentions, hopes, and wishes for the Lunar Month. It is good to write them down either on a piece of paper or in our Journal. Journaling can be a valuable tool in our daily spiritual invocations.
First Quarter Moon
The First Quarter Moon appears approximately a week after the New Moon. We might call the First Quarter Moon, as well as the Last Quarter Moon, “the half Moon,” because the Moon appears cut in half. It is not a quarter of a Moon at all in appearance.
At the First Quarter Moon, we might meet challenges we had not prepared for. We may need to make on-the-spot decisions about how to proceed and then do what needs to be done in order for our intentions to manifest. It is a time for action.
At Gibbous Moon we may have to refine or edit our primary hopes. Maybe some event has happened so that we cannot fulfill our intentions; maybe we changed our mind. Whatever has occurred, this is the time to adjust/edit our written note. There is nothing to worry about; it is a good thing to realize limitations or change of mind. This is the time that it is easy to accommodate and adjust.
This is the time that our contract is signed, sealed, and stamped. Note that it is not necessarily delivered. It may be, but if it is not, do not be discouraged. We still have two weeks to devote to this intentional period. Know that the intention is “out there” in the universe and time is gathering all the circumstances and other people’s intentions and time frame together to make this happen the best way for all concerned. Some teachings say that in six months the Full Moon will be in the same House as the New Moon occurring this month. Therefore, it may take six months for your intentions to manifest rather than two weeks.
This is the time to be grateful, talk about your intention to those who wish you well, share your hopes and wishes, and ask those trusted friends to keep good thoughts for you. Tell yourself enthusiastically that your intentions are “already done.”
Last Quarter Moon
Now is the time to let go, release, and forgive anything and everyone that you may feel has hurt you or forgive yourself for those you have hurt in any way.
It is a time of surrendering yourself and allowing the universe or spirit to take over. It is out of your hands and no more action is needed from you.
Peace. This is the time to surrender, rest, and recuperate. No more thinking, planning, getting in your own way, or action of any kind; just peace. As the Moon slowly enters “the dark of the Moon,” we allow our visual minds to become dark, too, and be still.
Enjoy The Journey. Blessings, Berena