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Full Moon Tarot

This full moon feels particularly potent this time around. I’m not usually one to look into astrology and the like, but for some reason this time it resonates more with me!

So, as it is so potent, I felt the need to draw a tarot card for the energies surrounding at this time. What exactly is going on anyway?

I drew the card from my Rider-Waite deck before looking up the meaning behind or astrology drive behind this moon. Many people like to take stock of or use things like Mercury retrograde as an excuse for poor behaviour. After all, you can’t punish a planet, right?

From astrology’s point of view, this full moon is supposed to be affecting all kinds of relationships in your life. The need for love or affection will grow stronger, but alongside this, the feelings of jealousy or anger/intimidation are also likely to grow. I guess even if you don’t believe in this (like myself) you can still have the knowledge that you have been forewarned. I suppose it’s nice to be able to reflect on what is going on and step back, rather than let things fly out of control.

With this alignment of planets, etc, it may make those of us in relationships moodier, quicker to jump into arguments or fights. It may also have an effect on those who are single – you may feel like lowering your standards just so you are not alone. However, if you are in a healthy relationship, this can actually help to bring any frustrations to the surface and enable you to resolve them now rather than letting them simmer below the surface.

So what did the tarot cards say?

6 of Cups, upright, from the Rider-Waite Tarot Deck

The card which appeared for this reading was the 6 of Cups in an upright position. This card takes you back to the happy memories of when you were younger. The connections you made there are ones which bring you joy and happiness.

This card showing up is interesting, based on what I have found out from astrology related to this full moon. This card is based around relationships, as is the moon this time around. So this card showing up, which indicates that there is an increased level of harmony at your disposal, is fitting. It’s showing that with a little patience, the issues which may arise can be handled with ease. Giving and receiving is in full flow, and you are willing to give each other the benefit of the doubt – after all, everyone has their off days.

This card encourages you to give into your playful side. Be childish. Do the things that make you happy. Play the games you used to. Visit the old haunts of your childhood or teenage years with the same people once again. Embrace living life to the full.

It can indicate children coming into your life too. Perhaps you or someone close to you is yet to find out they are expecting a child (or two! This can indicate twins!). It may also be showing you that you may soon be spending more time with children. Maybe now is the time to embark upon becoming a teacher or a nursery assistant. Children are open-minded, curious and usually have some kind of outlook to life we can all learn from. Keep an open mind, keep moving forward and enjoy the little things!

Planting by the Moon

The following is a very short introduction to ‘planting by the moon’.

It is thought that using the cycles of the moon when planning and planting a garden can help various aspects of the plants reach their full potential. You can read more via the source links below.

Synodic (waxing and waning) cycle

This method divides the lunar cycle into four parts (phases or quarters) and takes approximately 29.6 days to complete. After the phase or cycle grouping, it groups crops into four main categories: root crops, foliage, crops with seeds on the outside and crops with seeds on the inside. Then, the specific category of crops will be assigned to the phases of the moon depending on which phase relates to their growth characteristics.

The cycle beings with the new moon. It then continues to wax until the full moon. After this time it is in the waning phase until the new moon is once again around and the cycle begins again.

The four phases can be assigned to the categories as such:

New Moon (waxing crescent phase): sow leafy greens or foliage vegetables and herbs.

First Quarter (waxing gibbous phase): sow vegetables that have internal seeds like capsicum, chillies, pumpkin, courgettes and legumes, fruits and grains.

Full Moon (waning phase): Sow root vegetables, bulbs and tubers

Last Quarter (waning phase): this is considered a barren period for sowing and transplanting. It is a great time for getting various garden jobs done.

Info from: the-gardeners-calendar.co.uk and jansmith.org

Biodynamic Cycle

This method uses the 12 zodiac signs as a method of the position of the moon for more accurate planting. This was developed by Rudolf Steiner in 1924. Using a set calendar to perform various tasks- planting, etc, helps map out when things go in and when they come out. Over the course of the moon cycle, it visits each of the zodiac signs throughout the month, and the features the signs hold can be related to the planting. For example, Pisces is water so could relate to leaf, Capricorn is earth, so relates to roots. Choosing the plants that grow together is a big part of this too, as it’s in coordination usually with organic farming or growing methods. These methods can be carried out on large and small scale operations, so don’t feel you can’t apply it if you only have a small section in your garden to grow!

Planning the growing around leaf, flower, fruit and root makes for a stronger mixture for the soil, as well as each plant individually. Another option is to rotate the crops around the garden if you have that option- this helps the soil stay fertile and producing what the plants need. There may not be many flowering plants which are edible, but remember that a garden is not just there to feed humans- bees and many other insects love flowering plants, so make sure they get a snack in too. Another aspect to consider in this kind of gardening method is composting. Having a compost heap is a great addition to any garden and it helps bring nutrients to where you need them most whilst gardening. The traditional method with biodynamic gardening is that the compost heap is gathered, assembled and finished in one go, preparations are added and then it’s left to do what it needs to. This may not be practical for all gardeners, because you may not have the amount of material ready that you will need to make your heap as big as you’d like. Some like to contain their compost heap within a container, others may be lucky enough to have a large enough open location in their garden they can place an open heap.

The biodynamic compost preparations that you will need to use in your compost heap are: yarrow, chamomile, and nettle, dandelion and oak bark- these are available from the BDAA (Biodynamic Agricultural Association) if you are not able to get hold of these. There are also field sprays and different ways of preparing the locations your compost heap will be contained in, also available from the BDAA. If you are choosing to build a heap over time, you can add small amounts of the ‘Mausdorf Starter’ to your heap over time which will help temper the heap, keep the smell down and keep the flies away. Also, once the season of growing is over, be sure to keep your own seeds for use the next season. If you’re unable to gather and keep the seeds anywhere, try and use biodynamic seeds that have been produced in an environment where the biodynamic measures are in use.

If it takes a while to get the garden working in conjunction with these methods, don’t worry. According to the website, biodynamic.org.uk, it can take some time for the plants (and also the gardener!) to get used to this rhythmic cycle of planting, growing and harvesting. Growing in line with energies of the cosmos may seem like a very odd concept to many people- many may even scoff at the idea- but as we are part of something much bigger, if it’s a method you wish to try, then go ahead and give it a go!

Sources and ideas for this method were from the-gardeners-calendar.co.uk and biodynamic.org.uk

– Lotte

Lunar Cycles

The moon is a very inspirational thing for many people the world over. Seeing something under the light of the moon can alter your perceptions. Much of ‘Traditional’ magic favours moon or candlelight in order to perform spells and rites. It does help to focus if you are using natural, moon or candlelight when performing a ritual as light bulbs can create a lighting effect that makes it hard to concentrate or focus. Sometimes they can be too bright, not bright enough, or simply give you a headache.

Many choose to do their spell work under the cover of darkness- perhaps harking back to the days of being a witch or ‘Pagan’ in secret- but daylight is just as powerful for spell working and ceremony. Moonlight adds a certain mystery to a setting, the ability to perhaps see beyond what is really there on this plane and focus on the spirit. Daylight can be unforgiving in that it doesn’t always allow for that kind of vision.

Being in a dense forest in daylight can bring a different lighting atmosphere to a setting, because of the dappled sunlight hitting the floor as it comes through the branches and leaves, rather than directly from the sun itself. It acts as a filter from both the harsh light and the intense heat in the summertime. The moon can allow you to see shapes within the trees, moonlight dancing through the leaves and branches and reflecting off pools of water in a subtle, yet powerful manner.

The cycle of the moon is associated with the tides rising and falling, the female menstrual cycle, the tenacity of the sea including the occurrence of storms, and the womb. Moonlight is said to cleanse, to empower people and objects- looking at the sea, it is also traditionally said to help wash away that which is not needed or required and smooths the harshest of surfaces over time.

The moon is also said to affect the growth of plants and the harvest of fruits. The Roman author, Pliny, recommended that farmers pick their fruit for market just before the full moon because it would contain more water and weigh more, but to pick fruit for their own stores at the new moon because it would last longer. This same guidance could be applied to crops- ones that grow above ground were planted during the waxing moon, and those that grow below ground like bulbs and root crops, should be planted during the waning moon. The waning moon is the time to prune and transplant and the last quarter is said to be best for harvesting.

The reason for this lunar growing is because the moon affects the seed and plant’s ability to draw up water. Planting seeds just before a full moon can give them an edge. In relation to magical energies surrounding the moon, it makes sense that they would thrive near the full moon rather than the new moon because it can be much harder to draw energy around the time of the new moon than near to the full.

In many societies, the full moon for each month has its own name which is derived from the agricultural and seasonal cycle. This is from findings dating back to the Anglo-Saxon period of their names for the full moons during the year:

December- January: Moon after Yule
January- February: Wolf Moon
February-March: Lenten Moon
March- April: Egg Moon
April- May: Milk Moon
May-June: Flower Moon
June-July: Hay Moon
July-August: Grain Moon
August- September: Harvest Moon
September- October: Hunter’s Moon
October- November: Blood Moon
November-December: Moon Before Yule

Any extra full moons in a single month were referred to as a Blue Moon.
These names for the different moons throughout the year are from time-meddler.co.uk

Alternative names for them are found over at earthsky.org and are as follows:

January: Old Moon, Moon after Yule
February: Snow Moon, Hunger Moon, Wolf Moon
March: Sap Moon, Crow Moon, Lenten Moon
April: Grass Moon, Egg Moon
May: Planting Moon, Milk Moon
June: Rose Moon, Flower Moon, Strawberry Moon
July: Thunder Moon, Hay Moon
August: Green Corn Moon, Grain Moon
September: Fruit Moon, Harvest Moon
October: Harvest Moon, Hunter’s Moon
November: Hunter’s Moon, Frosty Moon/Beaver Moon
December: Moon before Yule or Long Night Moon.

The moon can be used to bring specific energy to the circle depending on the phase of the moon. Drawing Down the Moon is one of these practices, and is performed at the full moon. This kind of ritual is possible to perform alone or with a group- depending on how you like to practise your rites. The full moon rituals will be to welcome in positive energies- at this time, you draw things toward you.

The new moon is exactly the opposite- you aim to let go or distance yourself from situations or relationships that are no longer good for you, or perhaps a bad habit that’s happening. This then allows you to move on with a clear, fresh energy.

Moving forward and letting go are two major aspects to look at and remember when you’re working with the moon; greeting and parting, welcoming and bidding farewell. You can also look at these aspects from a seasonal perspective which can also help with the energies- spring for welcoming and autumn for letting go, just as the leaves and plants respond to the changing year.

~ Lotte

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