Recently, as I started creating witchy graphics to go with these posts, something began to nag at me. It’s one of those things that you’ve seen so many times, you don’t realize you’re not really seeing it, and when it suddenly comes into focus, you shout, “Eureka!” Last night, I was poking around on the interwebz, looking for information on the new moon coming up next Tuesday, and I asked myself, “Wait a minute, self – why do some people call it the new moon, and some call it the dark moon? Is there a difference between a new or dark moon?”
I sussed it out and discovered, yes – there is a difference.
After a big more digging, I found a clarification that feels right to me, over at Lady Althaea‘s website –
The Dark Moon
Astronomically, this refers to the period when the Moon is not visible in the sky. This lasts between 1-3 days, depending upon your location. This is the period between the end of the Waning Moon up to and including the very start of the Waxing Moon, when the Moon is again illuminated by the Sun.
Astrologically and magickally, this refers to the period when the Moon is not illuminated in any way, it is the period between the end of the Waning Moon and the start of the Waxing Moon.
The New Moon
Astronomically, this refers to the Midpoint of the Dark Moon, the time of which the Moon is exactly between phases, i.e. Waxing and Waning, as such, all times given for the New Moon on calendars, and even on the NASA website, are the Midpoint, the peak of, the Dark Moon.
Astrologically and magickally, this refers to the very beginning of the Waxing Moon, when the Moon is again illuminated by the Sun; that very first Crescent of Moon in the Sky.
Since the 16th will be the Dark Moon, I put together a simple ritual, keeping in mind the lyrics from Libana’s song, “Dark of the Moon” –
Dark of the moon,
Dark of the moon,
plant a seed tonight.
Dark of the moon.
What we envision
will come to be
by the full moonlight.