We have all looked up at the moon at some point of our lives and been in a state of awe at its powerful, majestical presence and magnitude. The moon illuminates the sky and appears as a beacon of light and mystery. It is always there, constant and intriguing in its changing forms.We know that not only does the moon affect the tides on earth, but also female menstruation. It has also been reported that the moon can affect human mental state, behaviour, and emotions. Natal, psychiatric, and general hospital wards are often busier on a full moon.
Scientific research has curiously found that as all matter has frequencies, including the moon, sun, planets etc, and these frequencies have the ability to affect humans and animals, even if it is on a subtle level. The frequencies of the moon can affect and influence the thoughts and impressions in our sub-conscious mind and cause things to surface to the conscious mind and thus bring them to our awareness. When there is a full moon, the frequencies are much more active, and so there is a heightened activity and intensity of the mind as well as behavioural tendencies.
Every moon phase has its own special energy and magic. The constantly changing cycle of the moon can be analogised with the process of a seed sprouting into a full flower in bloom. See the chart below to understand the phases of the moon and its spiritual and symbological significance. By understanding the energy of each phase, you can begin to connect and work with the cycles and have a better understanding of how they affect you.
ANALOGISING THE MOON PHASES WITH THE GROWTH OF THE SEED AND ITS SPIRITUAL / SYMBOLOGICAL MEANINGS
At this part of the moon’s cycle, it has no illumination and so appears dark and not visible (except during a solar eclipse). As it is dark, it denotes the beginning, with a primal instinct for birthing. The seed, as a symbol, is beneath the ground. So this is the germination stage, where you can initiate the emergence of something new by setting your intentions for what you wish to grow. A good time for starting anything new such as a project, idea, business venture etc.
The moon is now partly illuminated by less than one-half, and increasing. The seed is now sprouting. Things are moving forward and there is the hope of more to come.
The moon is one-half exposed, and increasing in illumination. The seed is now presenting a root and plant structure on its way to growing and moving forward. This symbolises a period of decision, action and commitment.
More than one-half of the waxing of the moon is showing and increasing in illumination, therefore it represents the sense of gaining and attaining. So this can be applied to what you wish to gain and develop, such as friends, wealth, skills etc. Now the buds are preparing to bloom. This is the developmental stage where ideas and plans can be cultivated and fine-tuned before the next stage of manifestation.
The moon is full and round in all its glory. It appears to be completely illuminated by direct sunlight (this lasts for three days before and after the full moon date). As the moon is fully luminated, it represents fertility, abundance, transformation and completion. The seed is in full bloom. It is a potent and powerful time for healing, guidance and magic, as well as any positive intentions, including improving your psychic abilities. The moon will act in your favour and you will achieve good results. As the sun and moon are directly opposite each other, it causes tension or polarity. There are associations with the Goddess mother aspect, so you can honour and connect with Goddesses such as Isis, Cerridwen etc.
The moon is more than one-half showing, but not fully illuminated, and decreasing. As the moon appears to be getting smaller, this is a good time to focus on ridding something such as bad habits, stresses or negative thinking.
One-half is showing and it is decreasing in illumination. This is like a half-way point, a kind of contemplative time of introspect & (re)evaluation. The seed has now planted fully and all harvests have been reaped. There is a sense of shedding of the old before the new can come into place.
The moon is partly illuminated with less than one-half showing, and it is decreasing in illumination. The old cycle ends and the new one is near. This is the final releasing & purging stage, completing anything remaining, and banishing anything not required, before the birth of the new seed.
WORKING WITH THE MOON CYCLES
Take time to observe the moon and pay attention to it’s changing cycles. Think about taking an inventory of how the moon may be affecting your life. Are you in sync with its natural rhythms and symbological cues, or fighting them? Learn to honour and work with the moon’s energies.
See my related article: “Moon Ceremonies & Rituals”.