For those of you who saw it, the moon last night was so bright and beautiful, even though technically the full moon for this month won’t occur until Saturday. I am always intrigued by the names attributed to each full moon. The different tribes in different regions offering up suitable names based on seasonal or anticipated events or repetitive occurrences.
Several days ago I looked into my backyard and saw several deer dining on my shrubs and other vegetation. One was a young buck, with his fuzzy little horns just beginning its growth season. Hence you will find names like Moon When the Buffalo Bellow from the Omaha and Arapaho, the Apache’s Full Moon of the Horse, and the Kiowa’s Little Moon of Deer Horns Dropping Off. Many Native American tribes make reference to this being a time of growth and ripening with names like the Full Ripening Moon of the Passamaquoddy, Moon of the Young Corn by the Potawatomi, Moon of the Small Harvest from the Navajo, the Little Harvest Moon of the Creek, the Mohawk’s Time of Much Ripening, the Ojibwe’s Full Raspberry Moon, and the Full Ripe Corn Moon of the Cherokee. The Algonquin’s Full Thunder Moon speaks of seasonal weather conditions, as well as the Comanche’s Full Hot Moon or Full Large Moon.
Each of these names gives us a little glimpse into the simple ebb and flow of natural life. The names were repeated year after year. People knew and understood the meaning behind each of these names. The Cherokee knew that the Full Green Corn Moon would be followed by the Full Ripe Corn Moon, and the Navajo knew the Big Planting Moon would be followed by the Small Harvest Moon.
There is a natural rhythm and progression that exists within all of creation. Grandmother Moon (nookomis giizis) has dominion over the ebb and flow of all bodies of water. In conjunction with Father Sky, Mother Earth and Grandfather Sun, they move, shape and give life to all that exists.
This is a time of fruitful abundance. A time of witnessing all that nature has to offer … to you, your family, friends, and neighbors, as well as to the four-leggeds, winged and finned ones, to the standing nation, rains and waters, grasses, minerals, and those that crawl or slither. It is a time of turning your focus and attention away from your everyday worries and woes, and turning it instead towards the expression of gratitude for all that has naturally, without demand, been given or made available to you throughout your life and the lives of all those you know, have known or will know in the future. This is the time to strive for harmony and peace within your life, your home, your work, your environment, your community, your planet and your universe. Just like a tiny apple seed that grows into a beautiful, flowering and fruitful tree … one small expression of gratitude, without demand, will make a world of difference … now and into the future.