Moon Rhythms and Cycles
Our Connection to the Moon
The Moon waxes, wanes and changes constantly just as we do, or have done, in our monthly cycles.
In the Celtic tradition the day began at dusk just as we swam in the dark for nine months in our Mother’s womb before birth, just as the seed sleeps deep in the belly of Mother Earth.
The ancient Irish women knew instinctively that night time was feminine as the Moon’s power lies in the stillness of her quiet centre, which mirrors our nurturing and loving ways.
In the old Irish tradition, because of her innate wisdom, she is known as Grandmother Moon, ‘Seanmháthair Gealach’ (pronounced ‘Shan-wha-her Gee-al-ack’) in the Gaelic language.
Grandmother Moon has the power to turn the tides on our planet and her monthly Lunar cycle echoes ours from puberty to menopause. Her orbital journey around the Earth takes a little less than a full month, the same time as our menstruation which is why we women often refer to our ‘Moon time’ when we have our monthly bleed.
Her archetypal energies have much to teach us as we embrace the gifts these cycles have to offer. When we go with this flow – our struggles become less. We enter into a wiser, more grounded, brighter and lighter space, helping us to live the life of our dreams. She mirrors us as women adapting and changing to the world we live in at this tumultuous time. The Moon knows she is the Moon. She knows the wisdom of her being – there is no struggle, simply still and deep knowing.
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The Moon Cycle
During her full Lunar cycle, Grandmother Moon will go through eight distinct phases: Dark (New) Moon, New Crescent, Half Moon (first quarter), Waxing Gibbous, Full Moon, Waning Gibbous, Half Moon (last quarter) and Old Crescent. Depending on the exact number of days in each month, the Full Moon occurs a day or two earlier each time. So like us women, she is constantly changing and has a gloriously intricate cycle.
When the Moon is in full luminosity, she reflects a time of ripeness and abundance.
Twice a month Grandmother Moon is in her Half phase. This occurs both when she is waxing – growing larger into her Fullness and when she is waning – getting smaller into her Darkness. These are times of balance in our month when we are invited to be poised in harmony between activity and rest. If we don’t gauge this correctly then we may feel out of sorts. When you next see a glorious Half Moon, note how this delicate see-saw time is for you and adjust accordingly.
The Dark phase of the Moon, also referred to as the New Moon, is least talked about yet once we tune in, we can feel this keenly when she is hidden from view for 3 days. We can’t see her but we can sense her energy of deep quiet potency. We may find that this is the stage of the month when we do not want to be visible to the world preferring to stay in the warm cocoon of our home. Flow with this, expressly ask for time out and enjoy your self-nurturing.
When the Moon is New with a sliver of a Crescent, she reflects a time of fresh, new beginnings, full of expectant promise. We may tap into and harness this vital energy to bring forth new projects and conceive exciting ideas for our life if we are wise.
Three Phases of Being a woman
Mother, Maiden, Crone
As women we have three distinct parts of our lives all beautifully mirrored in the Moon’s phases: our young Maiden phase echoed by growing through her Darkness to a glorious New Cresent, our nurturing Motherhood reflected as she burgeons from Half Moon to stunning Fullness and finally our Crone Elder time as Seanmháthair Gealach recedes back from Halfness to her pensive Dark time.
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