The Lunar Phases
|Sound the ram's horn at the New Moon, and when the moon is full, on the day of our Feast;
Psalm 81:3 NIV
And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall
all flesh come to worship before me, saith the LORD. Isaiah 66:23
In the days of the Old Testament, the ancients watched for the New Moon diligently; when the pale crescent
Moon first appeared in the sky. This was, actually, the crescent Moon of modern astronomy/astrology. The
exact point of the New Moon was always in darkness. It could be expected to hear the ram’s horn at New
and Full Moons as per Psalm 81:3, but another explanation of how the New Moon was announced in
Jerusalem during the days of Herod;
The accurate determination of the new Moon was always of the utmost importance to the Hebrews,
because if they were not precise with the exact time of the new moon it would upset their whole calendar,
and the Lord of the calendar would be sought on the wrong days. If the Lord is indeed the Lord of times
and seasons and designed a calendar, then it was their duty to observe it with accuracy and heart-felt
During the time of Herod’s Temple the high priest was the one chosen to announce the New Moon from
the Temple, based upon the testimony of two trustworthy witnesses. Once the announcement was made
torches were lit on the Mount of Olives, which was a signal to those waiting upon other hills, even distant
hills, that the New Moon had appeared over Jerusalem and to celebrate the New Moon with those even
of the dispersion.
The ancient lunar calendar as well as the tropical astronomical calendar seem to make more sense than
the Gregorian. Very few people realize that some of the holidays we celebrate are based on the ancient
Lunar Calendar as well as the Astrological.
Easter is calculated as the first Sunday after the full Moon after the Spring Equinox which usually falls on
Christmas is celebrated on the fourth day after the Winter Solstice as the Sun begins its Northern trek past
the Spring Equinox to the Summer Solstice when, again the Sun will rise a bit Southerly passing the
Autumnal Equinox and set a bit South of East.
Following the Lunar Cycle as part of our spiritual devotions can be very fulfilling in developing a deeper
connection with our planet, Mother Earth, and Father Heaven.
The Eight Lunar Phases and Keywords
New Moon: New beginnings, fresh start, blank page.
Crescent Moon: Intention, hopes, and wishes
First Quarter Moon: Challenges, decisions, action.
Gibbous Moon: Adjust, refine, edit.
Full Moon: Signed, sealed, and stamped.
Disseminating Moon: Gratitude, sharing, enthusiasm.
Last Quarter Moon: Release, let go, forgive.
Balsamic Moon: Surrender, rest, recuperate.
Following the lunar phases has special meaning to women as for 50 years or so we are physically and,
perhaps, emotionally following the same phases in our lives. The Moon represents women in Astrology.
The New Moon represents the menses and in ancient days women retired from others during this time.
After three days, another hormone takes over and a woman is preparing and intending her next action.
After a week (the first quarter) she returns to the action in her life and takes the steps towards fulfilling her
plans. Any changes comes at the gibbous phase and the flowering occurs during the Full Moon which
occurs two weeks after the New Moon (this is also the time she is fertile and can become pregnant).
The disseminating Moon is the time a woman reaps the rewards for a job well done with celebrations and
accolades. The last quarter is clean-up time, putting everything back in place and letting go of the
emotional intensity of the last weeks. The balsamic phase is the recuperation and surrender phase;
preparing for another time of retiring from her world at the New Moon coming.
The Lunar Phases begin at the New Moon. Today it is all figured out when the actual New Moon occurs,
but in ancient days the New Moon began at the first observance of the crescent Moon.
Historically, new moon spotters in Israel watched for the thin crescent to establish the beginning of each
month. Once seen they reported their sighting to the calendar court authorities of the Sanhedrin. Note
what one authority says, “Originally, the New Moon was not fixed by astronomical calculation, but was
solemnly proclaimed after witnesses had testified to the reappearance of the crescent of the moon,”
Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 12, p. 1039. http://www.yrm.org/whatisbiblicalnewmoon.htm
So, too, today as we cannot see the actual New Moon, the Dark of the Moon is a time for a fresh start, a
clean slate, and a new beginning. It’s a time of gathering our thoughts, planning our campaign, and getting
ready for announcing it at the Crescent Moon.
The Crescent Moon is the time to announce our intentions, hopes, and wishes for the Lunar Month. It is
good to write them down either on a piece of paper or in our Journal. Journaling can be a valuable tool in
our daily spiritual devotions.
First Quarter Moon
The First Quarter Moon appears approximately a week after the New Moon. We might call the First
Quarter Moon, as well as the Last Quarter Moon, “the half Moon,” because the Moon appears cut in half. It
is not a quarter of a Moon at all in appearance.
At the First Quarter Moon, we might meet challenges we had not prepared for. We may need to make on-
the-spot decisions about how to proceed and then do what needs to be done in order for our intentions to
manifest. It is a time for action.
At Gibbous Moon we may have to refine or edit our primary hopes. Maybe something has happened that
we cannot fulfill our intentions; maybe we changed our mind. Whatever has occurred, this is the time to
rephrase or adjust/edit our written note. There is nothing to fret about; it is a good thing to realize
limitations or change of mind. This is the time that it is easy to accommodate and adjust.
This is the time that our contract is signed, sealed, and stamped. Note that it is not necessarily delivered.
It may be, but if it is not, do not be discouraged. We still have two weeks to devote to this intentional
period. Know that the intention is “out there” in the universe and time is gathering all the circumstances
and other people’s intentions and time frame together to make this happen the best way for all concerned.
Some teach that in six months the Full Moon will be in the same House as the New Moon occurring this
month. Therefore, it may take six months for your intentions to manifest rather than two weeks.
This is the time to be grateful, talk about your intention to those who wish you well, share your hopes and
wishes, and ask those who love you to keep good thoughts for you. Tell yourself enthusiastically that your
intentions are “already done.”
Last Quarter Moon
Now is the time to let go, release, and forgive anything and everyone that you may feel has hurt you in any
way. It is a time of emptying self and allowing the universe to take over or whomever you trust in your faith.
It is out of your hands and no more action is needed from you.
Peace. This is the time to surrender, rest, and recuperate. No more thinking, planning, getting in your own
way, or action of any kind; just peace. As the Moon slowly enters “the dark of the Moon,” we allow our visual
minds to become dark, too, and still. Peace.
To find out which Lunar Phase under which you were born and which phase you are presently under, send
your request to
February 10, 2010 (1:18pm)
Gratitude to Kelly Lee Phipps for his amazing work on the Lunar Phases from which I learned nearly all I