Esbats and the Moon Phases

Esbats and the Moon Phases

There are 12 - 13 Full Moons yearly, or one every 28.1/4 days. The Moon is a Goddess symbol, as well as a source of energy. Each Moon has a traditional name: January - Wolf Moon, February - Storm Moon, March - Chaste Moon, April - Seed Moon, May - Hare Moon, June - Dyad (pair) Moon, July - Mead Moon, August - Wyrt (green plant) Moon, September - Barley Moon, October - Blood Moon, November - Snow Moon, December - Oak Moon. A Blue Moon is variable and occurs when the Moon with its 28 day cycle appears twice within the same calendar month, due to that month's 31 day duration.

Esbats are rituals held at various times of the moon's cycle, and consist of healing, magick, growth, inspiration, insight. They change always. While the Sabbats are the eight points of the year, Esbats are for inner workings. These are not holidays, rather designated times of the month where the electro-magnetic pull on the earth allows for greater power to be drawn down from the moon herself.

The Moon is seen as a mystical source of energy. Though it glows at night, the Moon possesses no light of its own. It reflects light from the hidden Sun. Because light can be equated with power, and because of the Moon's strong, proven effects on the tides and the cycles of both women and animals, energy drawn from the Moon during Esbats further empowers magickal workings.

Moon Cycles

Waxing Cycle - This cycle of the Moon refers to the period of time from the New Moon to the Full Moon. The energy from this cycle should be used in "drawing" that which you want towards you. It's a good time to begin new projects and expand any current efforts. It's also a time to craft workings that concern love, harmony, balance, and peace, as well as protection and healing.

Waxing Crescent - Light crescent on right side of Moon.

First Quarter - The right half of the Moon is lit (ninety degrees from sun, end of first quarter, beginning of second quarter).

Waxing Gibbous - Three-fourths of the Moon is now lit.

Waning Cycle - The waning cycle of the Moon is the period from the Full Moon to the New Moon. This is the cycle to use for banishing and rejecting baneful aspects, such as disease and negativity, as well as dissolving destructive energies of all types.

Full Moon - Moon and Sun in Opposition; the entire Moon is lit. The Full Moon actually covers three days, including the night of the Full Moon, itself. This is a time for action, for harvesting the fruits of our labors, for realizing that which we began at the last cycle, and of giving thanks.

Waning Crescent - Dark crescent on right side of Moon.

Third Quarter - The right half of the Moon is now dark (ninety degrees from sun, end of third quarter, beginning of fourth quarter).

Waning Gibbous - Three-fourths of the Moon is now dark.

New Moon - Sun and Moon in conjunction; the entire Moon appears dark. This is the time to rid your life of whatever it is that is holding you back, causing you to worry, or is generally outdated and useless in your life. Use the energies of the waning cycle to banish disease and negativity, and to dissolve anger, guilt, separation, and any other destructive energies within or around you.

Special Moons

The Dark Moon - The Dark Moon is the three day period from the last sliver of moonlight to the first sliver of moon light. This is the time of introspection; of looking within and meditating on the shadow self. The Dark Moon is a powerful time for reflection and meditation. It is a time to become better acquainted with the Shadow side of yourself, and to learn how to channel that shadow energy in a positive manner. Don't try to banish your shadow side; instead, draw on its inherent strength to aid you in the hard times. Remember, your Shadow Self is neither good nor evil. It's simply one half of who you are; how it finds expression is totally up to you and your intentions.

Moon Void-of-Course - As the moon orbits the Earth, it passes in and out of the 12 signs of the zodiac. A void-of-course moon is the time period when the moon makes no major aspect with other planets before entering another sign. The duration of this period can be as little as a few seconds or it can be longer than a day. The Moon rules the emotions, so one can expect to experience feelings of "disconnectedness," as well as emotional upsets, turnarounds, and variability. Therefore, it's a good rule of thumb not to sign contracts, start rituals, cast spells, or begin anything that would require any degree of emotional commitment until the Moon is aspected once again.

Blue Moon - A Blue Moon is that wonderful occurence when the Full Moon shows us her face twice in one month. Also known as a Goal Moon, it's an excellent time to set new goals for yourself.

Harvest Moon - The Harvest Moon is the full moon that appears nearest to the autumnal equinox, which occurs on or about 23rd September. This moon is also known as the Wine Moon, the Singing Moon and the Elk Call Moon. The harvest moon gets its name from the fact that farmers who were harvesting their crops at this time of year were able to use the extra light of the harvest moon to continue the work in the fields. It sometimes occurs in October, depending on the cycles of the moon, and is then referred to as the Hunters Moon.

Eclipses - As Lunar Eclipses represent the perfect union of the Sun and Moon, any type of magick worked or energy sent out during this time will be amplified.


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