Moon Phases Class

The Moon represents powerful feminine energy. It signifies wisdom, intuition, birth, death, reincarnation, and a spiritual connection. Moon cycles are similar to the cycle of a seed: the seed is planted, it germinates and grows into a flower, then blooms, and then dies, like anything cyclical, these phases or stages build upon each other.

Every lunar cycle begins with a new moon, which is when the sun and moon are on the same side of the Earth, and peaks at the full moon when the two luminaries are on opposite sides of the Earth. After reaching the fullest point, it then begins to appear to fade, showing less light and appearing smaller until it looks like its no longer in the sky, 

 

THESE ARE EIGHT DISTINCT PHASES OF THE MOON:

  • New
  • Crescent
  • First Quarter
  • Waxing Gibbous
  • Full
  • Waning Gibbous 
  • Last Quarter
  • Waning Crescent 

In the photo pictured, the red moon is the new moon, working clockwise around the circle- full moon at the top, before it starts waning, reaching the dark or new moon phase for the next cycle. 

NOTE: The most popular phases are of course the full and new moon. Some people lump together the first quarter and waxing gibbous as well as the last quarter with the waning gibbous when talking or working with the energy of the moon. (for spells, manifestation and intention setting)

NEW MOON: THE BEGINNING OF THE CYCLE

 

This is the time of rest, relaxation, peace, deep wisdom, powerful banishing, divination. It marks the time for new beginnings, fresh starts, growth, optimism, starting over, hope and faith.

Best for: 

Quietly listening, meditating, journaling, reading, waiting 

What it is:

A new moon is when the sun and moon are on the same side of the Earth, astrologically occupying the same sign of the zodiac. The moon is completely dark during this phase. While it is still in the sky, we are unable to see it, or anything in our surroundings without the help of artificial light. Using the metaphor of the life of a plant, this phase is the seed of pure potential that hasn’t yet broken ground.

Action:

The new moon is a great time to journal, meditate and wait to see what comes to you. Once you spot a crescent moon in the sky around sunset (usually 2-3 days after the new moon), you can declare your intentions, whether that’s through writing them down, telling a friend or performing a small new moon ritual. 

 

 

 

CRESCENT MOON: 3 TO 4 DAYS AFTER THE NEW MOON

 

Do your work in the first two or three days the new crescent is visible. This is a good time for setting new intentions like a new diet, a new lifestyle, shifting to a new course of study, starting at a new job, starting over in a new place, or the start of a new relationship.

Best for: 

Setting intentions, reaching out of your comfort zone, taking risks, experimenting 

What it is:

You are able to see a sliver of the moon and slight light in the night sky. This is an exciting but also a tender and vulnerable time. Continuing with the plant metaphor, the crescent moon is when the seedling first breaks ground and is exposed to the elements. 

Action:

Crescent moon days are great for initiating conversations, setting up appointments and experimenting with your style, although nothing is certain yet. You won’t know how things are going to turn out unless you try.

 

 

FIRST QUARTER: 7 TO 8 DAYS AFTER THE NEW MOON

 

Best for: 

Making decisions, organizing, finalizing plans and ideas

What it is:

The halfway point between the New and Full Moon. The light is here to stay, and the plant is setting down roots. This is when you may face some resistance to your plans. 

The Action:

The first quarter moon brings the first challenge in the lunar cycle. There’s no turning back at this point. This is where you continue moving forward or trail off and abandon your plan. This is why it’s so important to make decisions, devise action plans and clarify goals at this time. The clearer your vision, the more likely you’ll make it happen.

 

 

 

WAXING GIBBOUS: 11 TO 12 DAYS AFTER THE NEW MOON 

 

Best for: 

Working out kinks, editing, preparing, refining

What it is:

Energy builds rapidly at this time, and you start to receive insight as things come together, just don’t let distractions distract you from your goals at this time! 

Action:

During this phase, refining and making sure every little thing is in its right place. 

 

 

 

 

 

FULL: 14 DAYS AFTER THE NEW MOON

 

This is the best time for consecrating tools, charging jewelry, and also the time for creating spells about spirituality, psychic development, dreams and divination.

Best for:

Celebration, finalization, harvest, joy and gratitude along with releasing what no longer serves, holds you back or keeps you stagnant. 

What it is:

The full moon is when all the energy we’ve put into our intentions over the previous two weeks reaches a climax. This is when the plant reaches its full bloom and begins to bear fruit. Just be mindful that this time can also bring out high emotion and sensitivity, especially if whatever was initiated at the new moon doesn’t go as planned.

Action:

Reevaluate your goals. Take inventory on your surroundings (whatever that may be) and release what is no longer helpful or healthy. Focus on gratitude for the past cycle and what it has brought you, taught you, grown you or shown you. 

 

 

WANING GIBBOUS: 3 TO 4 DAYS AFTER THE FULL MOON

 

Best for: 

Networking, socializing, collecting feedback

What it is:

If the full moon is the show, then the disseminating moon is the after party, when we harvest the fruits of our labor. When the full moon show has gone well, this is a time for spreading joy and making connections in our success. 

Action:

When the plan/intentions haven’t gone well, it’s necessary to course correct for the next cycle. Start thinking/journaling about how you would like to move forward in the future.

 

 

LAST QUARTER: 7 TO 8 DAYS AFTER THE FULL MOON

 

Best for: 

Pivoting, regrouping, reflective journaling

What it is:

The last quarter moon is another point of challenge. The adrenaline of the full moon has fully worn off at this point, and it’s time to regroup. If things didn’t go well during the full moon phase, this period could be emotionally difficult. 

Action:

The cycle is coming to an end and the plant is beginning to wilt and die. It’s time to reflect on everything that’s happened over the last few weeks through reflective journaling and conversations with close friends.

 

 

WANING CRESCENT: 11 TO 12 DAYS AFTER THE FULL MOON

 

Best for: 

Cleaning, resting, leaving, quitting

What it is:

The Waning Crescent phase is the end of the cycle. At this point, the moon wanes to complete darkness, and we sit in stillness. 

Action:

This is a great time to rest, clean and let go of regrets from the last 28 days. You might feel exhausted or depleted so plan for restorative activities and more self care. Try not to push when the energy just isn’t there. You may also want to do some oracle/tarot pulls or other divination to confirm the lessons of the last few weeks.

 

 The more you can release at this time, the more clarity you’ll have about what you want to initiate at the upcoming new moon.