Tonight is the Full Moon and our Women’s Full Moon/Cedar Ceremony.
Ever wonder about the full moon? It is amazing how big and beautiful she can be. You will often hear the moon referred to as being feminine because she controls the waters … the rain and tides, as well as women’s fluidity … their menstrual cycles and other bodily fluids. She also influences our emotions and emotional states. People who work in schools, hospitals, jails and other institutions, will often talk about the changes in people’s personality during a full moon. And how many times have you (or someone you know) complained about not being able to sleep around the time of the full moon?
So, while the moon is generally referred to as feminine, the sun is referred to as masculine … generally. In some traditions, it is just the opposite (e.g., Japanese mythology). In the Jewish tradition, each month is a lunar month and begins on a New Moon and ends when the moon is dark. In many (but not all) traditions, the full moon is about abundance … starting with the New Moon and growing to its full potential … or full abundance.
In my practice, I refer to the moon as Grandmother (Nokomis), as she watches over all of us throughout the night. In the evening as the sun begins to set, she steps in and takes over from Grandfather (Mishomis) … always there to lead the way through the dark night sky. Even when she is hidden behind the clouds, we know she is there … ever watchful, regardless of which stage or cycle she may be in … full, new, waxing or waning. As Grandfather begins to rise in the sky, she hands over the responsibility of guiding us (her children) over to Grandfather while she rests. Sometimes, they will both appear in the sky, guiding us ever so gently.
As a child growing up, my father would tell me that you always wanted to plant during or after a new moon because whatever you planted would grow faster. You would weed during or after a full moon because that was the time when you got rid of those things you didn’t want to grow or you didn’t want in your garden. In fact, if we wanted our hair to grow a little faster, we would get it cut on or right after a new moon, and if we didn’t want it to grow so fast, we’d wait until the full moon!
The same concept is true when looking at your personal life. If there are things you want to get rid of … emotions, habits, judgements, patterns, etc. … this is the time to do it … during the full moon and before the new moon. If you want to bring something into your life and grow it, during and after the new moon is the best time to do that! The Full Moon is good for letting go of those things you no longer want in your life, while the New Moon is great for attracting those things you want to bring into your life.
The names given to each month’s full moon helped the Native Americans and others to keep track of the seasons. Each name was carried throughout the entire month. Not only did the Native Americans give names to the full moons, but so did the Celtic, the American settlers, Chinese, etc. During the month of October, with most of the leaves having fallen from the trees, on a clear night the moon appears very big, full and bright. The 4-leggeds (e.g., deer, squirrels, bear) are fat, having fed well through the months of plenty, or have stored food for the winter. So some of the names associated with October include … the Full Hunter Moon, the Full Blood Moon, the Full Dying Moon, the Full Travel Moon, and the Full Blackberry Moon … just to name a few.
This month’s full moon is very busy … based on some of its names (Travel, Hunter, Blood, Dying, Blackberry) and what we have to do to prepare for our own hibernation …
- get to the place you want to spend the next few months in
- clear your space of unwanted materials or items
- prepare your space for the long, cold months ahead
- store some food and supplies to help you through the darker months
- prepare yourself physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually
This is the time to put all of your energies into getting ready for the next several months … and to do it with great expectations, anticipation, and gusto! After all … we are moving towards the elections, holidays, the end of 2012, the dawning of the Age of Aquarius, and the beginning of a bright, new year!!