Harvest Moon is such a special full moon. It’s the biggest and brightest of all full moons of the year. It signals the turn of the seasons and asks us to review what we have brought to harvest in our lives this year.
The Harvest Moon is always the full moon closest to the Autumnal Equinox, either before or after. If she occurs before the autumnal equinox, she is a Pisces Moon; afterward, she is an Aries Moon. This year she is Aries ~ outgoing, assertive, self-driven, fearless. She balances and merges these qualities with those of Libra ~ also outgoing and assertive, but other-driven.
This year, the Harvest Moon has the added distinction of being a lunar eclipse. It’s getting a lot of attention, with imposing names like Super Blood Moon Lunar Eclipse. Impressive and foreboding. It’s nothing scary, though. The Harvest Moon is always a super moon, every year. It’s a blood moon because it’s an eclipse.
The second type of Blood Moon is the reddish Moon we see during a lunar eclipse. The reddish hue is a result of earth’s atmosphere scattering light from all the sunrises and sunsets happening on earth. This causes the earth’s shadow to look reddish as it falls across the lunar surface. more about moon names
It is a treat that the Harvest Moon is also an eclipse. It gives us an opportunity to celebrate it in a memorable way. This ceremony has three themes: gratitude, release, vision.
For this ceremony, you will need:
- A few twigs and leaves, gathered on your Twigging Day
- Outdoor access, the ability to see the eclipse from a window, or watch it online
- A candle for each person to hold
- If outdoors, a campfire or fire pit
- If indoors, a fireplace OR an additional pre-lit candle.
- Optional: sage, paper, pen or pencil
With a lunar eclipse, we begin with light, move into darkness, and back into light. Time this ceremony to the eclipse, if possible. From start to finish, this eclipse will last for about 3.5 hours. If it’s not possible, time the ceremony to a comfortable pace.
Prepare your fire, or light one of your candles.
Start your ceremony before the eclipse begins, while there is still light on the face of the Moon.
Begin with gratitude for all the things that you have harvested this year. This starts your ceremony on a positive note. You may want to prepare a list of the things you are grateful for beforehand and read them aloud at this point, but you can also speak spontaneously. If you’re with a group, allow everyone to offer their thanks. Be prepared for tears and laughter if you are sharing this ceremony with others.
As the shadow starts to fall across the face of the Moon, the ceremony turns to release. If using a fire pit or fireplace, add some sage for cleansing. If using a candle, burn some sage in your usual manner. Send a message upward in the smoke for emotional healing from the negative things you experienced this past year. It’s hard to move on if there’s still any lingering emotions concerning the past. State out loud the things you want to release. Spend just a moment talking about it with your circle of friends if you like. Nothing long and dragged out, just an acknowledgement. Focus on the Moon and the eclipse. Imagine the darkness that at one time entered your lives, and the black hole it felt like sometimes. If you’re using a fire pit or fireplace, add something to the fire to represent what you are releasing ~ a twig or a written note, for example. If you are using a candle, place a twig or your note on your table. Simply throw it away later.
As the light begins to return to the face of the Moon, see good things entering your lives, bringing light. What would you like to enter? See it happening. You might want to spend another moment talking about this. Light your candle from the flame of your fire (carefully) or your pre-lit candle and state what you would like to enter your life. If there are two or more people at your ceremony, the next person will light their candle from yours, state what they would like to enter their life, and on around until everyone has said something out loud. When you’re finished, put out your candles. Watch the rest of the eclipse, seeing good things coming as the Moon grows brighter and brighter.
Harvest Moon Water
Set jars of water out during your ceremony and leave them overnight. You can then use the Harvest Moon Water to make a room spritz. Put the moon water in a spritzer bottle. Add a few drops of an energizing essential oil to represent Aries to the moon water. Lemon, rosemary, grapefruit, ginger, and peppermint are energizing oils. Use this spritzer whenever you feel your energy lagging. When you use the spray you’ll recall all the things you’re grateful for, the negative things that have passed on, and the good that awaits you in the future.
Have a bright and happy Harvest Moon, and a bountiful autumn.
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