Magic, Mystery, a little Whisky, and a Cat

L is for Lunar

The word lunar comes to us by way of Middle English where it meant “crescent shaped.” Before that, of course, it started as the Latin word luna meaning “moon.” From this, we now have Looney, lunatic, and lunacy. Anybody who works with large numbers of people or animals knows the full moon definitely affects behavior. As a teacher, I can tell you that during the three days of the full moon, anything goes in the classroom. Those little brains soak up lunar rays like bums soak up Ripple. (If you are a bum and like something besides Ripple, my sincerest apologies—and congratulations.)

In Tarot, the Moon card is about mysteries, illusions, and sometimes deceptions. Imagine the subtle play of blue shadows in a moonlit wood, wisps of mist along the river at dawn, half-heard strains of violin music, and the fleeting scent of roses and sage. The Moon rules that intuitive, hidden part we keep secret from even our closest friends and lovers. The power of the Moon is the yin power, dark, mysterious, receptive, intuitive, encompassing.

Distinctly feminine, the moon’s phases are divided into the Maiden, Mother, and Crone—the triple goddess. The two weeks of the waxing moon are for building, creating, manifesting while the two weeks of the waning moon are for protection, banish, discard, clean. The full moon is time of highest power with the new moon the second most powerful time. The dark of the moon is especially good for starting new things

Wiccans celebrate esbats on full moon and new moon nights. The Farmer’s Almanac shows the best signs of the moon for planting, harvesting, cutting your hair, among many, many other things.

Strangely, when I was a kid, my invisible friend used to hitch a ride to the moon on a 4th of July bottle rocket where she would stay until Halloween. I was never sure why, but I suspected she just got bored and found the excitement of a barren, airless chunk of rock preferable to Missouri in the summer. Any psychologists in the crowd, feel free to chip in.


Oh and by the way, If you live in North America, you can see a lunar eclipse this very night. I’ve posted the time for my zone. To see more time zones, go to

This eclipse is one of 4 this year—a tetrad—and obviously another sign of the end of days. Seriously, eclipses were considered bad omens by the ancients—and considering all the bad things that they had to deal with who can blame them? Change sucks, was their motto because it usually did. In our more enlightened world, however, it would be nice to think that we can watch the eclipse and enjoy it as a sign of the constancy of the universe. What would worry me is if this or any of the tetrad of lunar eclipses failed to materialize. That would signal something was seriously amiss with the regular movement of our planet and those heavenly bodies we are dependent upon for life. So when the eclipse is at its fullest, bang the gongs and shoot off the fireworks because it means that even though we are hurtling through a vast, dynamic universe at unimaginable speeds, we are right where we are supposed to be and all is well.

Eclipse times for North American Central time zone

Central Daylight Time (April 15, 2014)
Partial umbral eclipse begins: 12:58 a.m. CDT on April 15
Total eclipse begins: 2:07 a.m. CDT
Greatest eclipse: 2:46 a.m. CDT
Total eclipse ends: 3:25 a.m. CDT
Partial eclipse ends: 4:33 a.m. CDT

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